So the boat is extremely powerful, to say the least. It's worth discussing what the boat is, and is not.

The boat is arguably the strongest early game card in standard right now for Runners. That's right, early game. There is a common misconception that high-cost=late game, when the reality is that Netrunner's economy doesn't work like Magic's or Hearthstone's. If you want to SMC out a Unity when coming across a gearcheck like Enigma, you're paying 2+3 just for the install. Pay another 3 to break Enigma's subroutines, and you have now paid 8, the same cost as installing the boat and breaking through the ice for free.

But there's some important things to take into account: First of all, the boat can break essentially any gearcheck. If you've installed Unity, you can't break Ice Wall. You certainly can't facecheck carelessly in a world with Stavka. On the other hand, the boat will solve any ice that the corp will use to stop you in the early game. A second point to take into account is that the boat only gains more value over time as a sort of run economy card. Unity will force you to pay up for any gearcheck, no matter how small. The boat will continue to snowball by breaking ice for free.

What ends up happening is that the boat player will slam down the boat in the early game, and for the cheap, cheap price of 8 credits, they can run over all ice the corp installs. No need to keep drawing into Boomerang, no need to dig for more breakers, or even charging Aumakua. You have a boat, so you can get in. Nuts.

That said, as easy as it is to deem the boat overpowered (which it totally damn is), it isn't truly the be-all-end-all of ice solutions, because there are viable corp responses. Amani Senai can heavily punish careless boat installs, although in practice a good Runner will be cautious about installing the boat against NBN asset decks for this reason. Envelopment's ridiculous number of subs are a massive pain for the boat. Anansi and Fairchild 3.0 are obviously annoying for the boat for similar reasons.

It's also worth discussing what does not beat the boat. Public Trail+Retribution is a bait combo and you shouldn't try it. If you're in standard, Drago Ivanov with Retribution is simply too weak to be playable. Cheap gearchecks also don't work. In theory, spamming cheap ice can eat boat counters, but in practice, boat decks absolutely slaughter these types of rush decks because again, you can't gearcheck the boat. It breaks anything, and it's only a matter of time before the Runner manages to lock the remote. Hard-Hitting News also doesn't work, or at least not more than it usually does. The Runner saves money the turn the boat is installed by breaking ice for free, not to mention the fact that boat shapers are in a faction with Misdirection.

The boat has given all of the early game power shaper has wanted, and much more. Most rush decks are either on fast advance or a cheesy kill combo, because the boat+Pinhole Threading slaughters the jammy rush style that we're used to. Whatever corp deck you build, you have to answer the question, "How do I not just immediately f***ing concede on turn 2 when a boat gets dropped down." For many corp archetypes, the answer will be "you hope the runner throws the game." Now, this isn't necessarily a bad thing, it's just how metas turn out. However, it can't be overstated how impactful the boat is right now.

I know I'm million years late, but: why this is so expensive (in credits, memory and influence) vs his static brothers Mimic and Yog? What's so special about barriers? Love the jank in the trio supported by Dedicated Processor, but the (triple) cost hurts.

An ice tailor-made for Pravdivost.

In most NBN decks. this card is just kinda ok. Its subs are good, having both a somewhat painful face-check and an ETR. But at 5 cost, it isn't exactly cheap. Sure, Tollbooth is even more expensive, but it has a 'guaranteed' "lose 3 credits on encounter" ability that doesn't require any upkeep on your part. And at 5 strength, it is very annoying to break for Black Orchestra, as a nice bonus. You could advance this ice manually, but spending a click and a credit to make the runner lose 3 during a run on one specific server doesn't seem great. Still, NBN can always use more code gate options. On the cheap you have Authenticator (Pop-up Window doesn't even count imo) and funnily enough you often see Enigma. The aforementioned Tollbooth is the BIG one. At 4 - 5 credits you have Archangel (pretty good), Funhouse (good in tag decks), Peeping Tom (eew) and Sandman (EEEEW). Especially in a glacier deck, Mestnichestvo might see play due to being straightforward.

However, in Pravdivost this card becomes a beast. Because you can keep charging it for free, I think Mestnichestvo goes from ok to great. A 5 cost ice that cost the runner 6 - 7+ credits to get through every time is nice value. My big complaint here is that your ability is only once per turn, and if you are constantly using it on this ice you won't get value elsewhere. Still, on turns where you don't have anything else to advance, you can just keep parking counters on Mestnichestvo. Too bad its ability is only once per encounter. Vasilisa + this also allows you to trade more efficiently with the runner (1 of your credits for 3 credits of theirs), so you can use your ability for other purposes.

So yeah, neat little ice. One of the backbones for 1 ID's ice suite, and might even see play in other NBN decks. Probably not out-of-faction. Except maybe Eternal because of Tennin Institute. Is that a thing? I assume it isn't, but then again I usually stay with Standard and away from the shark-infested waters that is the Eternal pool. Anyway, happy to have Mestnichestvo.

EDIT: Oh god, I just remembered Cayambe Grid is a card in not-Standard...

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<p>Built to Last may also like it enough to spend 2 inf, as it's much better when charging it up pays you a credit</p> —

As the corp, would you rather have 7 credits, or 3 cards? The answer to this is almost always the former, and that's why several weeks after the release of Borealis, I have yet to see this card make an appearance in any HB deck, and I don't expect to see it pop up in (m)any decks going forward.

Is this agenda any good? I think it is right on the edge of "playable". And that's not good enough. Sure, drawing cards is usually nice but as the corp, cards come pretty cheap to us anyway. The skipping of discard is quite sweet, especially since on the turn we score we are most likely to be over our hand limit anyway. If we're Asa and we start next turn with 10 cards (6 + 3 + mandatory), we can empty it out with a bunch of installs. Too bad Lateral Growth just rotated. We could play something like Hansei Review to get more value out of the extra cards. But is that worth a deck slot in a world where shuffling cards back is cheap and easy? Nah.

This card's biggest problem is that even with the recent ban of Cyberdex Sandbox (and SSL a while back), most corps aren't starved for good agendas. And as a 4/2, this just doesn't make the cut. Not in a world where every corp can play Offworld Office. I understand and agree this could never have been printed as a 3/2 (Sports is already looking super strong). But as already established, even with all the support we have gotten, 4/2 is still a bit of an awkward type to score. So the ability has to merrit its inclusion. And with M3, that isn't the case.

HB even has other decent 4/2's you could consider. Hell, I think Architect Deployment Test is a outright good agenda. Even Remote Enforcement is arguably better than M3. When is the last time you've seen either of those? Right. And then there are truly amazing agendas like Vitruvius, Luminal Transubstantiation and now also Élivágar Bifurcation.

So yeah, I think this agenda will probably be binder fodder. Or at least it will be in Standard, until we get a big shake-up of the agenda suites.

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TL;DR

This card is not good from an econ perspective, as other reviewers have pointed out.

However, because you can use it to draw cards on the corp's turn, it gives you a way to survive double Punitive Counterstrike.

This is probably the best in-faction way for shapers to survive that right now, and it's not easy for the corp to prevent this.

It is also highly relevant in games vs. Jinteki: Personal Evolution. If the corp plays Mitosis, and you run and hit an Urtica Cipher, this can help you get your card count back up rapidly so that you don't die the following turn.

So, think of this card as a shield.

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