♦ Vamadeva 6[credit]

Program: Icebreaker - AI - Deva
Memory: 1 • Strength: 2
Influence: ●●○○○

Interface → 1credit: Break 1 subroutine on a piece of ice with exactly 1 subroutine.

1credit: +1 strength.

2credit: Swap this program with a deva program from your grip.

The Preserver.
Illustrated by Liiga Smilshkalne
Decklists with this card

Salsette Island (si)

#61 • English
Startup Card Pool
Standard Card Pool
Standard Ban List (show history)
  • Updated 2022-01-04

    UFAQ [Damon Stone]

    The Runner encounters a Tyrant with a single advancement token on it and breaks the subroutine with Vamadeva. If the Corp then uses Firmware Updates to add another advancement token to Tyrant, can the Runner break the new subroutine with Vamadeva?

    No. Broken subroutines still exist on the ice.

    Can the Runner use Vamadeva to swap in another copy of Vamadeva from the grip?

    Yes. Vamadeva does not specify "that is not a copy of itself".

    If Vamadeva is hosting The Personal Touch when it is swapped with another Deva, is The Personal Touch trashed or hosted onto the new deva?

    Trashed. The hosting card was removed from play, so all hosted items are immediately and unpreventably trashed.

    If the Runner has no unused MU, can they still use Vamadeva's swap ability without trashing programs to free up MU?

    Yes, because the rule about MU and trashing is about installing. Swapping is a simultaneous exchange of two cards. The moment the one deva is coming into play the other is leaving, with no overlap, so there is no need to free up MU.


Edited to remove misread. I was thinking it worked on ice of one subtype. Obviously that's not the case.

Alright, take 2, this time looking for one sub, not one subtype.


Ashigaru (only if there is just one card in HQ)

Asteroid Belt




Brainstorm (only if there is just one card in grip)


Burke Bugs

Cell Portal





Clairvoyant Monitor

Cortex Lock


Data Hound

Data Mine

Data Raven





Galahad (only if the corp doesn't reveal any other grail ice)





Gyri Labyrinth

Himitsu Bako

Hive (Only if they have scored 4 agenda points)



Ice Wall

Information Overload (only if the runner has 1 tag)


Ireress (Only if the corp has just one bad pub)

It's a trap!


Komainu (Only if the runner has just one card in grip)

Lab Dog

Lancelot (Only if the corp doesn't reveal any other grail ice)


Lotus Field




Matrix Analyzer

Merlin (Only if the corp doesn't reveal any other grail ice)

Meru Mati


Mother Goddess


Neural Katana

News Hound (Only if there is no current in play)

NEXT Bronze

NEXT Silver (Only if it is the only NEXT ice rezzed)

Paper Wall

Pop-up Window







Salvage (Only if the corp has advanced it once)




Special Offer


Swarm (Only if the corp has advanced it once)





Tour Guide (Only if one asset is rezzed)


Tyrant (Only if the corp has advanced it once)

Universal Connectivity Fee




Wall of Static


Woodcutter (Only if the corp has advanced it once)



(Salsette Island era)
Your 'scientific process' seems to include no less than 21 errors: —
The following ICE are incorrectly listed in this review: Architect Ashigaru Builder Curtian Wall Datapike Enigma Errant Boy Hadrian's Wall Harvester Hive Hourglass Inazuma Interrupt 0 Ireress Little Engine Patchinko Shiro Spiderweb Tour Guide Troll Tyrant. Please try to keep your review information as accurate as possible. I occasionally make mistakes too but I think everyone knows Architect has two subs right? —
Just an important bit of clarification: Vamadeva breaks ice with exactly one subroutine, NOT on subtype. You seem to have made a list according to sybtypes, which doesn't all apply to Vamadeva. For example, Architect, the first card on the list, has two subroutines. Sadyojata is the only Deva that references subtypes. —
Wow, ignore my typos... —
I originally misread this as 1 subtype too. —
I misread it as subtype also. —

Vamadeva has three limitations:

  • It can only break 's on ICE with exactly 1 .
  • It's an AI breaker and hence struggles against the terrible triad
  • It costs 6 to install.

Out of these three limitations the only problem is its installation cost.

By it's very nature it is not going to be a solo breaker like Eater or Faust (which also have problems against the terrible triad). Vamadeva is the final piece that rounds out other breaker suites. I've covered it's uses as part of the Deva suite in my Endless Hunger review but here I want to focus on Vamadeva by itself.

Vamadeva is very strong against Rush decks (except possibly which contains Spiderweb and Hive). Enigma is probably the most common problem Vamadeva may encounter that can't be solved without an appropriate breaker. Bioroid ICE can be dealt with using e3 implants and a .

Vamadeva is the perfect companion to Sunny's cloud suite breakers (GS Striker M1, GS Shrike M2 and GS Sherman M3). All of them are quite efficient to pump against large ICE and are highly efficient against multi ICE. However they have a serious efficiency problem against cheap single ICE. Having to pay 4 to break Wall of Static or 2 for Quandary is rather unpleasant and will quickly deplete a runner's credit pool. Vamadeva has the efficiency of Corroder or Eater and is perfect for handling the cheap stuff.

Combined with Grappling Hook + e3 Feedback Implants (to break multi ICE) it is also a great utility breaker for Geist, getting you through the cheap ETR barriers and code gates and saving your Crowbars, Shivs and Spikes for better targets.

(Salsette Island era)
Vamadeva does not break 1 subroutine on a piece of ice: it breaks subroutines on ice with only 1 subroutine. Therefore it doesn't interact with Grappling Hook or e3 Feedback Implants. —
@RubbishyUsername they are complementary, not supplementary. Vamadeva only works on ICE with 1 subtype and the Grappling Hook+e3 Feedback Implants will break ANY multi-sub ICE (once). They don't interact, but between those 3 cards you can beat any ICE in the game. —
Except Turing. But then you can use the Crowbars for that I suppose (or click three times). Wraparound remains annoying without Spike around. —

@Zakalve It breaks ICE with 1 subroutine, not subtype

Vamadeva is the opposite of solo breakers like Eater and Faust. It is an excellent fourth breaker for any deck that already has strong solutions for barriers, code gates, and sentries. It breaks every trap and every mythic ice in the game, so with a full standard suite you can literally break anything. As an added bonus, it is more efficient than Mongoose or Shrike against many common sentry ice (Cortex Lock, Data Raven, Gutenberg, Guard, Hunter, Rainbow), and superior to Zu13 or Striker for almost every 1-subroutine code gate with strength 2 or higher.

You might not install this deva in every game, but if your opponent is using trap or mythic ice, it is your one-card solution that isn't fiddly like Atman, Brahman, or Crypsis, and its efficiency against sentries and code gates can allow you to recoup its high install cost over the course of several runs.

(Blood Money era)
I think you overestimate this card's efficiency against sentries - ichi and architect are big names and impervious to this breaker. I think it's an excellent code gate solution, though. —
I'm not sure I see your point. Suppose you ran R&D protected by Gutenberg and Data Raven. Disregarding the auto-tag from Data Raven for the moment, Mongoose breaks in for 12 credits, Shrike gets in for 10, and Vamadeva gets in for 8. —

Surprisingly there is a lot of ice with one sub. I've counted 90 ice with 1 sub, 91 ice with multiple subs, 12 ice with a variable number of subs and 1 ice without any subs (Troll). That means Vamadeva can break 46% of all ice. Assuming the average division of ice is something like 33% barrier, 33% sentry, 33% code gate, 1% trap / other special that means Vamadeva breaks 13% more ice than a regular breaker.

Here's the thing though: because there's no ice breaker that only works on ice with more than one sub you cannot cover all the ice without either a less efficient AI or a conventional set of breakers. And while the break/pump stats on Vamadeva are the same as on Corroder that means it's not the most efficient at breaking barriers (Paperclip). Similarly it's not the best at code gates either due to Gordian Blade being more efficient if there are multiple code gates.

So what you end up with is an AI that sucks at the things AI's are supposed to be good at: working on significantly more cards than normal breakers. Vamadeva is efficient (1/1/2 break/pump/strength) but not top efficient.

Another criminal AI, Mammon, has no restrictions on what it can be used on and isn't much less efficient (2 to pump means it's 1 less efficient on half the ice).

I don't think this is a card that would be useful in practice. Though looking at knowthemeta it's in 5% of the decks, so maybe I'm wrong.

(Free Mars era)
One reason it is played in 5% of the decks is to specifically counter Mother Goddess shenanigans. Most of the 'weird' ICE that can't be broken with a full set of fracter+decoder+killer has exactly 1 subroutine, which makes Vamadeva a valid option to counter them. Also, many early game gearchecks have only 1 sub, so as long as you only see quandries and vanillas you can run with Vamadeva alone (or Vamadeva + Mimic/Mongoose for safety reasons). —!barrier+s!Code+s!Sentry <-- All existing non-standard-type ICE have exactly 1 sub! —