In a world where Archived Memories and Preemptive Action were (as of this writing) recently banned for allowing too much corp recursion, this card came as quite a surprise. Especially in light of the collection of strong recursion options that Jinteki has already accumulated.
And make no mistake. At this point, Jinteki is really good at bringing back cards from archives. They've never been bad at it, but it feels like it has been kicked into overdrive recently. Maybe the difference between these and Archived Memories is that these are mostly either high-influence, or agendas, making them difficult for other factions to make use of? Not sure. But whatever the reason, they're here, and worth taking notice of!
So. We're here to talk about Simulation Reset in particular, so let's get to it. On the face of it, it's a good way to cycle up to five cards back into your deck, if you don't like what you're holding. And that's assuming you just take the boring route, and reshuffle everything that you just discarded. What makes this card neat is that you don't have to reshuffle what you tossed - you can reshuffle whatever you want. So you can drop 3 Ice Walls, once the runner has their fracter down, and bring back 3 Hedge Fundss or something, that you know you can still use. Or bring back 3 assets that the runner has already trashed. Or whatever you want. With the ability to reshuffle up to 5(!) cards back into R&D, I think this may well be the most powerful recursion option available to the corp at the moment. (It certainly is in Startup format!)
So this already makes it a noteworthy card in my book. But wait! There's even more!
Because this card gets you another resource as well. One that is quickly becoming very important in modern Jinteki decks: Facedown cards in archives. This is key! I mean, obviously Jinteki: Restoring Humanity likes to have at least one for their drip econ, but whatever. That's old news. I'm talking about some of the newer toys:
- Nanisivik Grid lets you fire off guaranteed subroutines, from facedown ice in archives.
- Hybrid Release lets you install stuff out of archives as long as it is facedown.
- Moon Pool lets you use facedown agendas in archives as fast-advance tokens. (And reshuffles them back in as a bonus!)
- Regenesis lets you score agendas that are in archives. (Okay, this one doesn't strictly care if they are facedown, but there are very few ways to ever have an agenda faceup in archives...)
All of these really benefit from something that dumps up to five cards of your choice in archives as a side effect.
As a broader trend, I really like the way that Null Signal Games is leaning into Jinteki's historic connection to archives. They've done a really good job of making the runner actually care what's in there, beyond just fishing for stashed agendas. Letting the corp keep archives facedown is starting to open up a lot of potential for chicanery! But as archives have gotten more attention from runners, it has sometimes been hard for corp players to keep the mystery alive. This card is great for that.
As well as, you know, also happening to be the single most powerful corp recursion card I've ever seen. :P
Archived Memories returns a card to HQ to be played or installed immediately, while most of Jinteki's recursion shuffles cards into R&D to eventually be drawn. The immediacy of Archived Memories is part of its power.— Jeffrey Bosboom
Comparing Simulation Reset to Preemptive Action, it should be noted that Simulation Reset draws the same number of cards that were shuffled back, so it does not extend the clock on the Corp. Spin Doctor and Sprint, two other NSG recursion cards, also draw at least as many cards as they recur. The recursion agendas draw the game towards its conclusion simply by being worth points. Game length wasn't mentioned in the ban announcement, but it seems to be on the designers' minds. (In my limited Netrunner viewership, I haven't yet seen a game end by inability to draw, but I have seen games where the danger of decking out forced the Corp to play aggressively.)— Jeffrey Bosboom
I think you are probably exactly right on both of these. The immediacy of Archived Memories, just reinstalling whatever the runner just trashed (or just pulling back an operation to play a second time) is quite strong. And if the corp brought x3 copies of Jackson Howard and Preemptive Action, those six cards could extend the game by up to 18 turns total, which is actually kind of crazy to think about.— Bwob