Is this a Sunny Lebeau: Security Specialist, Apex: Invasive Predator or Hoshiko Shiro: Untold Protagonist card? I would say it's for all of them.
So let's have a look. If you fulfill all the requirements it is giving you 1 credit & 1 card which basically means instead of drawing or taking a credit you make a run. So it will give you forward tempo and you want to run at least once a turn.
You can compare it to Symmetrical Visage / Baby, which is 1 cheaper & gives you the same, besides a run. So to make more use out of it (or you use Baby on top) you need to have something that make your runs more valuable, like Security Testing, Dirty Laundry or any other run event, such as Bravado, Diversion of Funds, Khusyuk and so on. Or cards like Datasucker & Aumakua. So often against these decks icing archives is a good call as it will deny them the benefit they are looking for, even a Pop-up Window will be enough.
On the other hand running can be dangerous against decks that want to tag you, in this case you should sit back a bit, until you can effort to run and avoid being Hard-Hitting Newsed. The card also has similarities with John Masanori and besides being 1 more to install you wont get a tag from this card. So I would call it often straight up better. For 1 link runners it's also possible to add one link to make this card better. The Archivist or Cybertrooper Talut might be a solution.
So whats it with Hoshiko Shiro: Untold Protagonist this card is kind of made for her. Her better side will lose her a credit & gives a card per turn. But it enables also the credit gain from this card. So when you can run for cheap it's often a good way to get the credit from Dream Net and keep you good side drawing you more cards.
In general don't forget Symmetrical Visage! It's not that bad when you compare it to DreamNet!


I don't like Bellona as a concept. It's not a bad agenda by any stretch of the imagination nor is it an overly strong agenda. What it is is a ridiculously safe agenda. It's a 5/3 Hyperloop Extension that defends itself. If you can slam it down early enough you can score it on thoughts and prayers alone and the opportunity cost to trying is close to zero with only Film Critic or the rarely-seen Whistleblower really countering it. Either the Corp scores 3 points with zero momentum lost since the Runner didn't contest, the Runner steals Bellona and is down 5 plus however much it took to break the Corp's token defenses, or the Runner is short trying to break in and are now down however much it took to break the Corp's token defenses and the Corp scores 3 points with zero momentum lost. It is the 5/3 I have to compare other 5/3's to in yellow since they're competing against what is often a free and riskless 5/3.

I really don't like Bellona as a concept.

<p>I understand what you are saying, but I think what this does is help protect Corps from early and explosive multi-accesses from Runners if your agendas are inconveniently stacked. In the mid/late game, the Runner should have enough money and tools needed to break into the server to stop a 5/3 from being scored. As for “zero momentum lost”, I think that is a bit of hyperbole as you had to install and rez ICE to keep them out and spend 5 click and credits to score it. If the Runner cannot stop all of this from happening, then the 5 credits is not going to swing the game already in the Corp’s favor, but it will help stop the Runner from stealing 2-3 agendas a turn outside of Film Critic/Whistleblower.</p> —
<p>Bellona rebates the 5 credits used to score it. That is what I meant by zero momentum lost. The Corp spends nothing but their time to earn 3 points if they're scoring Bellona. That econ ability to pay for itself is very potent on a defensive agenda since defensive agenda are usually balanced by being blank when scored. Bellona rewards the Corp for doing what it's supposed to be doing anyway while having an unusually wide scoring window. It is overtuned and opens the door for bs combos.</p> —
<p>Valkyriez_Gaming on reddit found a hilarious combo that exemplifies what I mean. Mushin No Shin -&gt; Bellona -&gt; NAPD Cordon. It costs the Runner 15 credits to steal that naked Bellona and it costs the Corp -3 credits to score that naked Bellona. The Corp actually got paid to score 3 points and it only took two cards.</p> —

The easiest thing to compare this to is Clone Chip. Both are 1 install hardware that allow a program install from your heap. If he wasn't rotated, I bet the Exile would have fun with it. Anyways, with Clone Chip now gone, we have this to take its place. The first notable difference is the additional cost. Whereas Clone Chip is a flat to install for cost, this costs 3 less, but in order to use it, a program has to have been trashed this turn in order to fire off; otherwise, you have to trash a program. If you have a disposable program, such as a Kyuban on a piece of ice you can no longer feasibly get to or an SMC when you have your full suite out, then Simulchip is the chip for you. Otherwise, the best time to use it is after dealing with or recovering from a trash subroutine or operation, such as Enforcer 1.0 or Trojan Horse. In addition, if you're running bounce programs, like Lady, Gauss or Euler, this could be useful for a reinstall.

My thoughts on this hardware? Personally, I like Clone Chip better, simply because of its flat "install for cost". You could see this as a better version of Clone Chip if you have a lot of disposable programs, but I tend not to do that. However, Simulchip does give the option to save a program after having to trash it from a Corp card. However, if I need to recur something like SMC, I'd prefer to not waste the 3 less on it. 0 or 1 programs are probably better as fodder for this if you can spare it. Otherwise, this is a more reactive hardware to be used after the Corp tries to shut you down.

Well, Cpt_Nice beat me to it, but I'll say it as well: This is Cloak, but better. When I first saw this card, I dismissed it. I wasn't paying attention at the time; I was at work and it was way too cold to check my phone without killing the battery. When I got a good look at it, I realized it fulfilled the same role as Afterimage: fill a niche emptied by rotation.

So why is this better than Cloak? Same install cost, same memory unit cost, same amount of recurring credits. However, unlike Cloak, this lets you pay for programs and hardware. In other words, you're not limited to just using it to fire off icebreakers. Cloak was limited to just your icebreakers, but this has so much more utility.

On the bright side, I'm ahead of Cpt_Nice on something: I've already slotted Mantles into my Smoke deck.

I guess I wasn't expecting this to be saved from rotation. It's nice to see some of the older cards get saved and given a new lick of paint, so thanks for that, Nisei. I don't have a lot to say about Cerebral Overwriter, except that I think this version has a much cooler artwork. Nicely done, Krembler.