Castle Grayskull

icecoldjazz 536

Cake? Or Death?
Castle Grayskull is, without a doubt, the most fun corp deck I've ever built. I fell in love with Cambridge PE the first time I played it and I've been fooling around with Argus since it came out. Dissatisfied with all the Argus builds I've made, it dawned on me to try a Cambridge-style shell game. And it worked.

Teach Them A Lesson About Trust.
The deck plays very similarly to Cambridge PE, and thus being able to "read" your opponent is a valuable skill to have. It's a shell game, and you can never let the Runner be sure what you've just played. A huge part of being successful with this deck is forcing the Runner to make difficult and bad decisions. Plus mind games are so much fun!
Punish them for running your remotes with Ghost Branch; you'd be surprised how may people will faceplant into one and hand you the game. Unadvanced remotes are not safe either; your opponent will learn to respect the Psychic Field. And if they don't, kill them with Contract Killer. GRNDL Refinery is some serious econ, especially when the Runner is too afraid to touch it. Be wary of going overboard though - eight or twelve credits is usually enough. Posted Bounty makes the Runner explode if they ignore it. All of your agendas come with spikes factory-installed, so absolutely don't be afraid to naked-advance them, especially if the Runner decides that your remotes are too hot to handle. IAA that agenda you've been sitting on and watch the Runner say, "Oh look, a Ghost Branch." Or vice-versa.

Scary Remotes = Scored Agendas.
The agenda composition is pretty straightforward. Similarly to Cambridge PE, 3-pointers are to be avoided. Our identity does a good thing when the Runner takes an agenda, so we want that good thing to happen several times over the course of a game (otherwise we'd simply be playing a blank identity, and that's no fun). Generally, you won't score out behind ICE. It's rather easy to hide your points in plain sight.
False Lead is definitely the best agenda in the mix. Scoring one forces your opponent to run click three or risk death. An IAA'd Ghost Branch will often win you the game in this scenario, especially if it looks like an agenda (slap an ICE in front of it and watch them run!) - either they hit it early and you forfeit False Lead, or they hit it click three and explode anyways when you hit 'em with a toasty surprise. Getting one online early usually means you've got the game - and the Runner - in the bag.
Over-advancing Atlas is comically easy. Use the fact that the card you find is revealed to your advantage - fetch a trap, then play Mushin No Shin. Or find Contract Killer and IAA Ghost Branch.
Hostile Takeover = Dollars. Posted Bounty = Your opponent explodes.

Spontaneous Combustion, RIGHT NOW!
Cambridge PE players will notice an absence of Cerebral Overwriter. Three reasons for this, actually: First, it's two influence, which is a bit pricy for a single card. Second, it costs money to activate, which means some clever cyber-terrorist might think they are safe when you are low on cash. Ghost Branch will put them in their place. Finally, brian damblage is a little useful, yes, but tags are more useful. Making your opponent more susceptible to Scorched Earth is not as good as simply playing it.

"Intrusion... Countermeasures?"
Most of your ICE gear-check the Runner. This will keep your opponent out for a few turns while you set up a strong remote game - it doesn't take long. Archer is the baddest kid on the block for sure. They think they're safe when your only agenda scored is an NAPD. Put them in the DANGER ZONE. Archer gets rezzed nine times out of ten against everyone except Kate. Wraparound is AI-hate that Eddy K. would be proud of. Errand Boy usually gets broken and is pretty taxing. It'll bait a Parasite away from your Archer.

Good Luck, Have Fun, Don't Die, Don't Be Lame.
Words to live by.

7 Oct 2015 prozz

very interesting build, it needs Private Security Force tho!

7 Oct 2015 Lemonbrick

Looks really interesting, I love a shell game kill deck , how do you cope with aggressive Eater / Keyhole style decks or repeated Account Siphon style decks ? I feel they would lock you out

7 Oct 2015 icecoldjazz

Private Security Force isn't necessary. The Runner certainly isn't holding onto their tags for more than a turn. If they take a tag, kill them. Nine times out of ten it's simply a blank 4/2.

Mushin No Shin + GRNDL Refinery is an excellent way to recover from zero credits. The deck needs surprisingly few to play; just enough to threaten Scorch. I haven't had any trouble against Siphon spam in practice. If a Keyhole/Eater deck ignores your remotes, score a Posted Bounty and flatline the Runner,

7 Oct 2015 ANRguybrush


Played something a while after order&chaos, but couldn't fine-tune it. Maybe I will give it a shot.

7 Oct 2015 Lemonbrick

I will definitely give some thing like this ago any cards you would change given your experience with the deck ?

7 Oct 2015 icecoldjazz

@Lemonbrick No, this is my most recent version.

7 Oct 2015 elstob

I love Back Channels in PE Shell decks, no room for it in faction here? Maybe taking the space of some Beanstalk Royalties?

7 Oct 2015 peacelord2002

Back Channels is such an all star; if they are scared to run, getting 5 advances on a card is going to be super easy with Mushins, and then go to 15 credits from 0? Yes please.....

7 Oct 2015 unitled

"I'll have... cake?" "Well, we're out of cake." "I'll have the chicken then, please?"

7 Oct 2015 ctz

Cool dreck. You don't need back channels, DRT, or PSF.

Here are my only recommendations:

  • -1 psychic field -1 ice wall + 1 wraparound -1 contract killer + 2 crisium grid

Keep it the Rangus way!

7 Oct 2015 Myriad

By the power of Greyskull!

Keep fighting the good fight He-Man.

7 Oct 2015 icecoldjazz

@thesenorcortez I agree. I'm wary of dropping a Contract Killer; he's very useful al eliminating pesky Film Critics or just killing the runner.

8 Oct 2015 hi_impact

Takes me back to Order & Chaos when someone made a shell game Mushin Government Takeover deck. Go about your business and suddenly start advancing an old Mushin to 6. Good times and runner sweat were sure to follow.

9 Oct 2015 Cliquil

Did you ever play with a version with Midseasons/SEA Source & Profiteering/Geothermal? I made a deck with ludicrous Bad Publicity but still with economic advantage. it is gloriously fun to play and I recommend trying them out.

9 Oct 2015 Dixie_Flatline

I'm a big Argus player and just can't imagine not using DRT

10 Oct 2015 CowboyHatValor

Played this for a few games last night. Was pleasantly surprised how often good players will still hit a loaded ghost branch assuming you're too low on credits to trigger any traps that actually hurt.

10 Oct 2015 icecoldjazz

@CowboyHatValor like I said, Ghost Branch very often turns into free wins. People forgot it exists.