An identity I initially underrated at first, Lat has the ability to draw you a large chunk of your deck, which is something only a few cards in the game’s existence can brag about. Let’s explore him further, shall we?

Lat’s “minigame” revolves around matching the number of cards in grip at the end of your turn vs. the number of cards in HQ. The minigame is checked after the hand-size discard is completed so if Lat draws you a 6th card, a discard down to a hand size of 5 is not needed. While the minigame is fun in itself (and really, that’s all that being a Shaper is about), it can also be a great pressure tool to force an opponent to consider playing sub-optimally. This can come in the form of excessive ice installs or perhaps even excessive drawing on your opponent’s part; this sub-optimal play almost reminds me of what a Criminal like Leela or 419 can do.

Actually playing Lat can be a bit intimidating at first especially given the analysis paralysis that can come with planning all 4 of your clicks (or more) to capitalize on your ability. Common combos with Lat to fix your Lat number (cards in grip – cards in HQ) include:

Patchwork: If you’re +2 with one click to go, “Lat-chwork” gives you the option to save 2c on a play/install and earn a draw.

The Supplier / The Artist: If you’re +1, these are both great ways to unload a card from your grip with savings.

Professional Contacts: If you’re -1, ProCo is a great way to make that last click draw into a Build Script. Alternatively, the same thing could be applied for Artist when you’re 0 after your 3rd click to get a Process Automation.

I hear you asking how Lat stacks up versus 40-deck Shapers, and it’s a fair comparison – both can get through their decks quickly. However, if you can fire Lat’s ability every other turn, the 5-card difference can be made up in only 10 turns with any further Lat-drawn cards just being icing on the cake. And trust me, when you earn enough experience, firing Lat’s ability 60%+ of turns becomes muscle memory.

What about Hayley and Wu? That’s a tougher question as those two have click compression abilities that allow them to spend slots/basic actions on draw while Lat is trying to spend slots/basic actions on everything besides drawing.

I actually think the biggest thorn in Lat’s side is the fact that a lot of his gameplan is controlled by the Corp’s actions. There have been many times where I’ve been screwed over by a Sportsmetal off-turn trigger, an Audacity, or just an empty HQ. Ultimately, these factors make me believe that Lat is slightly worse than those competitive Shaper powerhouses for the time being. However, if he’s given a few more hand manipulation cards - just enough to enable him to fire his ability 90%+ of the time - he has the potential to become the best Shaper in the game.

P.S. I don’t recommend playing this guy in Eternal.

Tiered Subscription is one of 3 new advertisements in Downfall and at first glance, it looks quite attractive (even outside of Spark) with its strong rez/trash numbers. It’s definitely the strongest of the 0 instant-rez advertisements and that’s quite a big deal as Spark when you can drain credits turn 1 without ever losing initial tempo. Its 3 trash cost isn’t too bad either and is on-par with the other commonly played advertisements/campaigns.

However, in testing I found Tiered Sub alone does not always do enough for you. Tiered Sub’s true use is being an additional supplement to other must-trash assets. Without the latter on the board, the Runner can often ignore runs altogether until they are fully set up, leaving you creditless turn-after-turn while you were wishing you had an installed PAD Campaign instead. In that regard though, Tiered Sub can really find a home in horizontal decks who constantly require the Runner to run and interact with the must-trash assets. At 1 influence, it could be widely splashable anywhere.

What about the alternatives like Paywall Implementation or Sundew? Paywall is in most cases likely to make you more money but is 1 more influence and takes up your current slot while Tiered Sub could combo with ELP or Service Outage. Sundew is a stronger way to force the Runner’s decision-making and is the superior option in RP but is pricier in influence and isn’t in-the-black 99% of the times that Tiered Sub is.

In conclusion, you want to use Tiered Sub to put the Runner into a lose-lose situation. If they run and trash/steal your stuff, Tiered Sub makes you money; if they don’t, you steamroll them with your other tempo assets.

I agree it is best when you combine it with a must trash asset. It is very good to run with Jeeves and MCA, especially since in spark you will have three Marilyn already. It is also really good vs run-heavy criminal. —

NISEI rarely prints strict upgrades to previously-printed cards but that’s what Bukhgalter feels like to the now-rotated Garrote… wait a minute, haven’t I published this review before?

Jokes aside, the two criminal Killers have the exact same paid abilities that are so rare and elusive: "1: Break 1 sub" and 1: +1 strength". But that’s where the similarities end as Bukhgalter is 4 cheaper, 1 less , and pays you money for using it while Garrote gets 1 additional strength. I think the winner between the two is obvious.

Now I can already hear you saying, “Cherries, this card is OP!” Let’s take a look:

MKUltra is better vs:

Mongoose is better vs:

Na'Not'K (3 str) is better vs:

  • Surveyor (2 str*), Nebula *, Assassin *, Anansi *, all 3 str ice, all 2 str ice *

Na’Not’K (4 str) is better vs:

  • Surveyor (2 str*, 4 str, 6 str, 8 str*), Orion *, Archer, Trebuchet, Nebula *, Assassin *, Anansi *, all 3 and 4 str ice, all 2 str ice *

*Bukhgalter is better vs. these ice if it is the first piece of ice that it breaks all subs on

Ignoring the obvious offender Na’Not’K, that is not a lot of ice. Most of the ice listed above are also asterisk-marked. Does this comparison even matter though? At 4 influence, Shapers will gladly stick to their star pupil and Anarchs to theirs. But you best believe, Criminals now have their own Killer worthy of the icebreaker spotlight. If you’re running in blue, there is little reason to run anything else.

P.S. Thank you NISEI for a powerful blue card that is not under-influenced. I look forward to future sets!

Definitely agree--it's nice to finally see the Killer faction actually get... well a good Killer. Anarch has always had Corroder and Shaper Gordian--Crims had... arguably Femme, but more often than not at 1 Inf it was just imported into other factions more often than actually being useful in Crim. Finally Crims own the "basic, all-around good killer" breaker. —

Many cards get touted as Hedge Funds #4 – 6 and this card just gets added to that list. At 1 influence, it will see play anywhere, including the mini-factions, and is a great way to turn off a pesky resource that has overstayed its welcome such as Drug Dealer, Stim Dealer, Lewi Guilherme, or even Always Be Running. This card can also work on any normal self-trashable resource such as Crowdfunding, Armitage Codebusting, or Daily Casts. For that reason, Isolation won’t see much play in decks that already run Aesop's.

For the most part, Isolation is definitely a vanilla economy card – and that’s OK. Remember to factor in the install cost of the resource trashed. You wouldn't want to find yourself having played a crappy Lucky Find.

Most importantly though, can we take a moment to appreciate the flavour of this card? What happened to Hoshiko? Have they always been alone? Did they murder someone close to them to get these hard-earned credits? Are they now suffering from the guilt and burden of – no? Oh, okay.

Crowdfunding costs 0 and is a clickless install most of the time —
Thank you, I have it included. —

When you think of Weyland 5/3’s, they’re often very specialized and require building around:

High-Risk Investment barely sees play outside of Titan and Hollywood Renovation the same treatment outside of SSO. City Works Project generally does not require being built around and synergizes well with common green cards Punitive Counterstrike and Dedication Ceremony but it does have the Public subtype downside and is blank in centrals.

So for a Weyland 5/3 to see play alongside GFI and SSL, what will it need?

• On-score/on-steal ability like SSL? Check.

• No influence or unicorn unlike GFI? Check.

• Throwback to now-rotated flavourful Weyland card? Check.

SDS Drone Deployment is nasty and is the program-trashing Weyland card that might keep runners honest again. Sure Clone Chip is back in full force and yes, the conspiracy breakers are everywhere but icebreakers are bigger and more expensive than ever these days.

Unfortunately, SDS has one big weakness and that is on-steal, it allows the Runner to choose which program to trash. Whether that be a Rezeki, a Datasucker, or maybe even a Bankroll, the flexibility is huge and I wish this had specified “icebreaker” instead.

Overall, I don’t see this agenda seeing too much play over SSL or GFI. It’s just as weak to Film Critic or Whistleblower, provides flexibility to the Runner, and it has additional hate in popular cards Clone Chip, Dummy Box (on-score), or the conspiracy breakers. It’s disappointing that this is the case though as this card screams Weyland.

Beong —
Being able to choose the program yourself is still enough to see some play in rushy decks. Maybe the outfit? But I mostly agree with you. —
Yeah, it's a zero-sum game for agendas. You can only slot SDS by removing your current 5/3 so I'm not even sure rush decks would give up GFI. If Skorp were still around... —
SDS has potential to pull ahead of Food in two very important respects: first, it is not restricted, so if you want Surveyor you can't also have Food, and second, it actually rewards you for scoring it. SDS is competing with SSL Endorsement though given that it too has those advantages over Food. —