Hammer Horror (Adam with Independent Thinking)

Greasythumb 412

I build Adam with Independent Thinking about once a meta. I've always been convinced it's a better card than people give it credit for, because it offers insane burst draw that can radically change the shape of the game. This deck is one of my better attempts at showcasing that argument.

Pretty early on in the history of the game it became accepted wisdom that Adam's directives were better to lean into than to fight against, and that's mostly true if you just look at the directives themselves, especially since Find the Truth was printed and effectively replaced Always Be Running. But trashing directives for benefit is more complicated to evaluate. You're trashing the one that's helping you least/annoying you most, and in return you're getting (in this deck) either a bunch of cards or a bunch of cash. That's not always a good trade, but it often is.

The upshot is that Independent Thinking creates fun, high skill, high stakes decisions, which is why I'm a fan. Playing this deck well requires you to make some tough calls when it comes to trashing your stuff. You should do it more often than is probably comfortable to begin with. That's not to say that you should trash every directive - you shouldn't - but you should trash a lot of them, because a) it gives you pace corps won't expect out of Adam, b) it effectively lets you tailor your ID to your matchup, and c) You've got replacements.

There's no overall gameplan here other than 'go fast and break stuff', but I'd like to comment on a few of the card choices.

Jailbreak is great. I'm really surprised The Maker's Eye still sees play outside Shaper with this as an option. Two and -1 card for an extra access is an OK deal, but I don't think it's worth 2 influence, and that's not even factoring in the extra flexibility Jailbreak offers by also letting you target HQ.

An Aesop's Pawnshop based economy is pretty essential for an Independent Thinking deck, because the latter requires a ready supply of trashables, and if you're filling your deck with cheap fuel you need to make sure you have reliable options for burning it.

Always Be Running is just fuel 70% of the time, but occasionally it gives you surprise pressure early on. Think very hard about playing it if you don't have the means to trash it when you need to.

The Find the Truth/RNG Key combo is a good old reliable Adam economy staple, but in this case you should strongly consider burning it once there's defense on R&D, even if it's relatively light. See points a, b and c above, and consider that it's not one, but two card's worth of glorious engine fuel. In addition, don't underestimate the downside of Find the Truth. Showing the corp all your options actually sucks quite a lot, which makes playing Independent Thinking on FTT for a bunch of cards the corp doesn't get to see feel surprisingly good.

Wasteland is solid econ, but it might be a self-indulgent use of influence. They're trash fodder in a pinch though, so that's nice. Remember that you can also fire them with Logic Bomb on the turns when you don't use your main engine. I might cut one of these for a Simulchip in the near future.

Carmen and Corroder are arguably a crutch this deck doesn't need, but they both do work on occasion. I'm loathe to cut them, but that doesn't necessarily mean doing so is wrong.

Algernon isn't usually worth it, but I figured it was worth giving it a go as long as I'm reviving forgotten Adam cards in a deck that doesn't mind having cheap trash lying around. My review is this: it's good when you're up against a corp that isn't trying to tax your economy. Most notably, five s against Jinteki spam decks is nice. On the whole, you should probably cut this for a good card.

Multithreader is good, but also feels clunky here. 80% of the time it ends up as fuel for Emergent Creativity.

That's all I got. Be Adam, but faster and more reckless. You know it makes sense.