Mandatory Media - the Upgrade Blitz!

Krams 938

This was supposed to be a silly theme deck, but much to my own surprise it's performance actually isn't that bad.

Any comments welcome! :)

How to get 4 per turn

  • Feed the runner an early Mandatory Upgrades by leaving it in HQ undefended or installing it naked.
  • Try to score out an early Mandatory Upgrades behind a cheap ETR ICE if the runner didn't catch your bait.
    • If you manage to score it out, congratulations, you now have 4 per turn for the remainder of the game. Your chances of winning just have drastically increased.
    • If you can't score it, well, don't worry. It's actually not in the deck to be scored, but to be stolen.
  • If the runner has a Mandatory Upgrades in his score area, use Media Blitz to copy it. Now you have 4 until the runner scores something. Make use of it while you have it!

What to do with 4 per turn

  • Install, rez, use Melange Mining Corp. behind some ICE
  • Use a preinstalled Melange Mining Corp. and play any card.
  • Score any 3/2 agenda from hand.
  • Turtle up by playing 4 cards if you're rich, but have no agenda to score.

What to do if you can't get 4

  • Get some money by clicking for creds or using Green Level Clearance and Hedge Fund.
  • Defend your HQ, R&D and a single remote by laying out some ICE.
  • If you get agenda flooded, try to use Jackson Howard, if not, try to use up your cards in HQ. When you're low on cards, use your remote to score normally or use Melange normally. It's riskier this way, but still possible. A layer of three cheap ICE can work wonders.

Additional notes

  • Pay attention on which ICE you use. Depending on the runner's rig some of the ICE might be useless, especially Fenris (might not be worth the BP against some decoders) or Swordsman (if they've got no AI).
  • Don't let the runner know what kind of deck you're playing until you can get 4 . Try to disguise as a brain damage based kill deck to scare off the runner and score out a Mandatory Upgrades if he's too scared to check it. He doesn't know you don't have a Cerebral Overwriter.
  • Don't be afraid to use Jackson Howard for non-agendas. It's a small deck and you got three copies! Media Blitz and Melange Mining Corp. are essential. If their gone, get them back!
  • The 3/2 agendas are meant to be scored for points only. But that doesn't mean you shouldn't use them when there's a good opportunity. Jackson Howard can save you against a complete backfire of Accelerated Beta Test and Project Vitruvius can be used as a superior version of Jackson to bring back key cards right when you need them.
  • Cycle the Mandatory Upgrades. You want one copy to be stolen and the rest to be sitting in R&D or (only if you've got Jackson out!) Archives.
20 Oct 2015 lorion42

Why don't add a Cerebral Overwriter? Add it to your archive if you don't need it. Just to make a runner fear you.

20 Oct 2015 Krams

Hmm, actually, that's a point :D Maybe remove one of the Ryons for it...

20 Oct 2015 FarCryFromHuman

@Krams: I'd also think Cybernetics Court is a candidate in any Cybernetics Division deck. With 4-5 per turn you can clean your hand out faster than most but overdraw is a serious thorn in the side of a 44 card R&D with a max 4 card HQ.

20 Oct 2015 ANRguybrush

Hey, saw you play it today. Pretty neat. A few things though: You have one influence left. Why not play 1 wraparound instead of the second wall of static? Also, I think it's a mistake not to play three Architects.

Fenris kinda blows imho. It would be decent if it weren't for the bad pub which you will gain even if you betatest this. Ichi 1.0 is way better.

Anyway, keep up the good work.

21 Oct 2015 SlayerCNV

i'm really not understanding the 3x Ryon Knight

21 Oct 2015 Dydra

@SlayerCNV I'm sure you don't.

21 Oct 2015 Krams

Ryon Knight is a way of dealing brain damage. And I want to be able to do that to scare the runner. If I wasn't dealing brain damage I might as well use ETF, which, actually, is a possibility I'm thinking about... But for now, this stays a brain damage based deck. Or at least, it mimics one.

about the ICE:

  • Wraparound is inferior to Wall of Static as long as they have a Fracter installed. And they probably will use one to get past Eli. If the Runner relies on AI only, I have Turing and Swordsman to punish that. Deckspace is tighter than influence for this deck and 4 anti-AI-ICE are enough.
  • Fenris is in the deck because I was looking for three things: A sentry, brain damage and ETR. Moreso even the combo of sentry and ETR! But I find myself discarding him from hand more often than installing him. With any decent killer out, he's a tax for 2 per encounter while giving the runner 1 per run for free and costing me at least 4 to bring into play (usually more because I tend to stack ICE a lot with this deck.) So while he has exatly what I wanted, he's still a lackluster.
  • Ichi 1.0 was originally left out because of his low trace strength. The chance of actually dealing brain damage with him are pretty low. Plus, I can't really punish the tags if he does win the trace. But then I looked at him again. It's a scary piece of ICE! It can trash programs if facechecked unprepared, it can force the runner to spend all his , giving me a chance to fire Ryon. And as an extra, this deck can get rich enough to make the trace a must-break-sub. Fenris is fired and Ichi takes his job!
  • I'm still considering Enigma, but for now, I can't find a dekc slot for it and I'm overall satisfied with my Vipers.
  • Markus 1.0 is still sad that I prefer Wall of Static over him as a 4th and 5th Eli. He's crying in the binder.
  • Architect is kinda nice and can be useful in the right moment, but I don't think he's as great as the hype for him. Unless you go horizontal, which this deck simply doesn't. Two of him is fine until I find another sentry to replace him, but more than two would be too much. Actually, he's only in the deck because he's a sentry and I don't like to run almost only code gates.
21 Oct 2015 FarCryFromHuman

What about Guard to replace Fenris? It's identical except you lose the brain damage and the bad pub, plus gain an ability that's great against criminals and Sunny.

21 Oct 2015 Krams

Guard is an interesting idea, but I already replaced Fenris with Ichi 1.0. And I don't want to remove any other ICE. People are so eager to break Architect that they don't realize I really don't want to install that much. And the rest already is ETR, except for Swordsman, who has proven himself worth to keep in the deck on many occasions.

So currently I'm happy with just +2 Ichi 1.0 +1 Cerebral Overwriter −2 Fenris −1 Ryon Knight

I'll test an ETF version of the deck with EVEN MORE cheap ICE and less brain damage. I'll post it once it's tested.

22 Oct 2015 Kelfecil

I love this. I am so going to try playing it with EtF as the ID as soon as I get my hands on the D&D expansion!

22 Oct 2015 Krams

@Kelfecil Here is an idea of how it could look like in ETF.

23 Oct 2015 voltorocks

Love this, played avery similar list myself with Mushin No Shin where the idea was just to use the ID as a bluff to score the most powerful agenda ever :D Media blitz seems like an even better way to take advantage of this.

thought I'd pop in and mention, once you have 4 clicks, theres a good chance you can score another ManUp by IAAing it, If you think they'll still fear a cerebral.

Swordsmen would be a waste in my meta, would probably drop them for a Marcus Batty(using up your last influence) and some other ice - 3rd architect or an ichi or something cheap.