Bloodlock: An unexpected monster v0.99

Erik_Twice 1986

When I took Industrial Genomics to Sunday's tournament, I didn't expect to do well. I was doing it for kicks! It looked like a fun card, that could build a different deck and, hey! I already won a Store Championship, I can just play whatever and have fun, right?

Well, I did have fun. The five Runners I flatlined...not so much.

The deck looks awful on paper: 54 cards, a hodgepodge of upgrades, three copies of Interns, and ICE that is both prone to Parasite and extremely expensive to rez. But it works. It works hard. And is very punishing towards the Runner.

What this deck does is force the Runner into a cycle of bad decisions, that can be boiled down to this:

1) They need to trash cards, specially Hokusai Grid and economics assets. But they can't do it while Hostile Infrastructure is on the table. 2) They can't trash Hostile Infrastructure because it's too expensive, they need to run archives first. 3) After running archives, they don't have enough cards and money to trash anything, so they sit back and click for credits and cards. 4) While they recover, assets pay off their profits, archive starts to fill back again and any trashed card of importance is brought back by Interns.

Basically, the deck combies the taxing aspects of both HB and Jinteki PE. It's a glacier deck that taxes cards, clicks and credits, constraining the Runner and preventing him from making runs. Going through Tsurugi, trashing Hokusai Grid for 11 while taking an extra point of damage from Hostile Infrastructure just to faceplant a NAPD or a Snare! is not pleasant so runs are few and very damaging.

The deck is also extremely hard to control economically because of the increased costs of trashing and the free turns not being able to run gives it. The usual denial tactics (Parasite, Siphon, etc.) are often a expensive in clicks and cards that is better spent elsewhere and, in practice, I wasn't bothered by either of them.

Really, it's an absurdly powerful deck and I didn't expect it to be. Hard to play, though, you must take care not to be forced to play your Jacksons early in the game.

I decided to run 54 cards to prevent self-milling, some matchups will go long and you really need those five extra turns to score and win. The influence is not neccessary and can be probably spent on a better Code Gate than Lotus Field, because I hate how it becomes blank if the Runner plays Atman or Torch.

So yeah, I'm afraid I've created a monster. Sorry guys!

65 comments
23 Mar 2015 wittela

This looks good, but have you had any success against Prepaid Kate with a feedback filter? I've beaten an IG deck similar to this one in two consecutive tournaments with Kate. She makes a ton of money, pays for net damage, and just wears down the corporation. Is there any thing unique in this deck that deals with that issue?

23 Mar 2015 Erik_Twice

@wittela

I haven't tested the deck enough to say but if they want to one point of damage for three more credits of tax, I'm not complaining. :)

23 Mar 2015 wittela

I'll have my playing partner try your deck against mine this week. I'll let you know what happens. Thanks!

23 Mar 2015 Erik_Twice

@wittela

Hope you have fun! Feel free to report later :)

23 Mar 2015 ItJustGotRielle

@Erik_Twice Thank you for the write up! I've been seeing a few IG decks win store champs, and they don't explain "how" they do it. You shedding insight is much appreciated! My main question:

How do you score agendas? I see you mentioned five flatlines- do you avoid scoring then? What does your remote look like? With no advanceable traps, how did you stop runners from only running things you advanced? Red Herring is great, but if the runner simply stops running and econs up, how do you keep them out of scoring remotes with so few ice? Do you aim to Caprice remotes?

Also, what are you throwing away to up the trash cost? I'm interested in what feel guides you through deciding to shape the board in terms of when to ice or toss it, when to install an asset or toss it. What is your focus early game? Setting out remotes, or installing on centrals? Thanks for your answers, I'm really interested in piloting this!

24 Mar 2015 Dydra

Errr... how do you prevent them from "fictive" running your archives early game, while you still have 2-3 face down cards?

Considering the amount of ICE u run in the deck, I expect it's close to a miracle to have 1 layer of ICE on each central early game, let alone a remote ...

Do u simply rely on Caprice (and chance) to protect your advancing agendas in the remote?

24 Mar 2015 x3r0h0ur

I've been working on an IG build similar to this, the full 3 herrings though, and I recommend moving to 3 subliminal where possible. It only takes 2-3 cards to make the ID effective, sometimes pitching SM is the right call. I've found that dropping PAD for this is fine, the ID's ability is enough with Hokusai, Hostile Inf, and snare/shock etc.

Then to help score out in not a shell game, medical breakthrough is superior to fetal AI, if just for speed sake. I ended up beefing up the ice, because breaking in and beating RH AND trashing it is too much for the runner. I do love your choice of ash though, that seems like the perfect add if you're high on bucks from PAD. Killer IG :P

24 Mar 2015 x3r0h0ur

Oh, and 54 cards is nearly certainly correct, in testing I/we have found that triggering the ID can cause you to deck out much too fast, and in this style, the extra cards almost certainly help, rather than hurt (no real combo cards)

24 Mar 2015 Erik_Twice

@Dydra

You only need three pieces of ICE for most of the game, one for each central so having ten is more than enough, you'll draw them pretty quickly.

Still, the thing is that you don't need to trigger the ability early on, so I simply drip out the Shocks! I draw and focus on dropping assets. I start using Jackson to fill up archives only when there's a piece of ICE or at least two shocks, whatever comes first.

You are in no rush to start scoring and you'll probably wait extremely long to do so so you'll draw most of your ICE by then. Still, you'll probably end up with 6 pieces of ICE on the table, you don't need more when you have so many upgrades.

24 Mar 2015 falseidol

I play a 54 card replicating perfection--I think Jinteki has the agendas to play 22 points of powerful agendas, and the quality cards to fit in 5 more ICE/money and be comfortable. I would still recommend DBS with 54 cards, to offset your increased variance (you could also run anonymous tips, if you want faster discards, but DBS with the IG ability is so strong).

24 Mar 2015 Erik_Twice

@ItJustGotRielle

I normally score one agenda at the midgame, there's a point in which the Runner has to recover for a couple turns and you are rich enough to score, or at least safely store an agenda in a remote composed of Ash and two pieces of ICE. So you score or store one there and score the other two later in the game. Basically, I bank on Caprice and Ash and then score.

Not having any advanceable cards is an important flaw but I took a singleton Jubeburg to the tournament and never used it, you can just manage your Ash and Caprices and score simply by matching economic might. Red Herring, weirdly enough, tends to go on Centrals, not remotes.

What you trash depends, but normally you trash Shocks/Shi.Kyu, Hedge Fund, Snare!, some economy cards and agendas. You can control the game in such a manner that if they trash Jackson they can't run archives so you can just dump three there and recur Jackson if he's trashed. Keep in mind many decks play Hades Shard, though.

Early in the game your goal is to get a piece of ICE on every central and enough money to rez them all. So you pretty much play facedown assets to get money and slow the Runner down until something sticks and you can start dumping cards in Archives with Jackson.

You are in no rush whatsoever, the more assets you drop, the less central pressure you'll suffer and stalling the game works out in your favour because they'll burn cards, bringing them closer to exhaustion. It's easy to end up in a situation where they spent half of their deck just trashing your economy, which is though.

I'm no expert on the deck, I really built it for trolling and did not expect it to be so competitive. So yeah, feel free to try it out and make some changes :)

24 Mar 2015 Erik_Twice

@x3r0h0ur

I tried Subliminal, but it's not synergetic with making the Runner trash your assets because you keep them running that way. I also feel you need to stack several PADs together, which is not something Subliminal can do, it's limited to 1 per turn.

@falseidol

I would love to run Daily Bussiness Show but I dont' know what to take out!

24 Mar 2015 Heartthrob

My favorite thing about this deck is how hard it hoses Wanton Destruction, Keyhole and DLR. Good luck Wantoning 4 cards out of HQ when 4 net damage is the reward. Almost makes me want the 3rd Hostile Inf to make sure you have it ready. Really dig this build!

What are your problem runners? Net shield feels like it would help. Reina Headlock give you any problems? Or Siphon locks?

24 Mar 2015 Heartthrob

on second thought, they'd only take 1 net for trashing 4 on Wanton, right? It's one instance. Still good though.

24 Mar 2015 Erik_Twice

@Heartthrob

Hostile Infrastructure triggers every time a card is trashed, so if four cards are trashed, you take four damage. And yeah, I should fit a third copy, if simply because running two won't suffice when Runners start trashing them on sight.

I really don't know what the deck is bad against, haven't tested it enough. But Reina, surprisingly enough, isn't it. Siphon generally isn't a problem because you are either horribly rich or can sink your money on assets and upgrades.

24 Mar 2015 Heartthrob

Right you are. That makes this deck that much more sick. You're totally right about the asset siphon protection too. An early siphon can be blocked with a Komainu/Asset install on turn 1. I'm going to try this out...looks like a helluva good time.

I was thinking Whizzard with I've Had Worse would be a good matchup. But the best Whizzard decks I've seen are the ones that use Wanton and DLR to wreak havoc...that version would die hard to this Bloodlock.

24 Mar 2015 talking_chicken

@Erik_Twice Wanton Destruction doesn't trigger Hostile Infrastructure, does it? It only triggers when the runner trashes a corp card, and in this case, the text reads that the runner forces the corp to trash cards.

24 Mar 2015 talking_chicken

Same thing with DLR and Noise's ability. It does trigger off of Keyhole, though.

24 Mar 2015 Heartthrob

@talking_chicken may be right. It's corp trashing, not runner trashing.

24 Mar 2015 Heartthrob

So find room for Crisium, because Wanton + DLR can be brutal and will bust through your traps. Also Crisium is just solid for so many cards. Crisium is already hard to trash...this deck makes it way harder to trash.

24 Mar 2015 Erik_Twice

@talking_chicken

Yeah, you are right, I misrembered the card. Still, I don't fear Wanton Destruction, it's basically a Legwork that dumps cards into a well-defended archives instead of letting the Runner access them. So yeah, it doesn't seem a problem worth fixing to me. :)

25 Mar 2015 falseidol

@Erik_Twice It's your deck, but if it were me, I think I would cut: 1x shi.kyu, 1x interns, 1x pad campaign, and substitute any of those for hostile infrastructure, depending on how often you get them online and taxing, they can be unwieldy at times, especially against imp, though maybe you just dump them against anarch?

25 Mar 2015 SlySquid

Love it!!!

25 Mar 2015 Saikron

Was anybody running Eater at the SC?

25 Mar 2015 Erik_Twice

@Saikron

They were. Eater is worse than a normal rig against this deck, though, because it doesn't access and all the pieces of ICE cost as much to break with it than they do with normal icebreakers.

25 Mar 2015 x3r0h0ur

The worst part about eater, is if you ice archives, they can use eater to break, then flip all cards in archives without accessing, clearing the ID for 'free.' IG's worst enemy is Eater. Unless you splash for checkpoint or something.

25 Mar 2015 Erik_Twice

@x3r0h0ur

I'm not worried about Eater not accessing archives, you don't rely on your ability and you can choose whether to tax them for flipping (ICE) or damage them (Open). Either way is fine by me.

After all, if they have to spend 4 credits just to return trash costs to normal, are you really having an easy time trashing cards? I don't think so =P

26 Mar 2015 Sarmatian

Took out the Melange Mining Corp. and added two Shell Corporation. Worked pretty good. I just sunk it on top of a Hokusai Grid on R&D behind whatever ice is already out there taxing. Spreads out the clicks so you can install or jackson draw more often. I also replaced Sundew with Ronin because I couldn't not run ronin when it will protect archives once the shocks are in there and archives will protect it from getting trashed. Brutally taxing and so fun to play.

26 Mar 2015 Sarmatian

Also, I think Imp spamming is the biggest weakness here.

26 Mar 2015 serax

Traded out 2x Hedge Fund for 2x Blue Level Clearance for giggles. Will see how it does at my game day tomorrow.

26 Mar 2015 Erik_Twice

@serax

Hey, that's actually not that bad of an idea! Hope you do well and report back! :D

26 Mar 2015 Erik_Twice

@Sarmatian

Imp is annoying, I think that if this deck gets popular we'll see more of him around. What I like to do is put Hostile Infrastructure in the same server a Hokusai Grid is, seems a good play.

Feel free to test any other economic combinations. I was tempted to run Shell Corporation too. :)

26 Mar 2015 CJFM

@Erik_Twice Awesome deck!

26 Mar 2015 Erik_Twice

@CJFM

Hahaha, thanks! Hope you have fun with it :)

27 Mar 2015 kojku

Mi like para ti , te lo mereces , un placer ver el mazo funcionar durante el torneo . Lastima que no nos tocara enfrentarnos. Supongo que ya lo habras pensado pero... ¿No crees que tres copias de Encryption protocol cerraria el circulo de la maldad absoluta?

3 Encryption + 1 Hostile + 1 Fetal AI , 59 cards , creo que lo probaré

My like for you, you deserve a treat to see the deck work during the tournament. Too bad we did not touch face. I guess you've already thought but ... think three copies of Encryption protocol would close the circle of absolute evil? 3 Encryption +1 Hostile + 1 Fetal AI, 59 cards, I think I'll try

27 Mar 2015 kojku

Sorry , fucking tranlator XD

27 Mar 2015 Erik_Twice

@kojku

Es que Encryption Protocol es overkill y en el fondo te sale igual jugarlo que descartar cualquier otra carta así que no merece la pena. Mucho mejor meter 3 Hostile Infastructure y más Becarios o sucedáneos creo yo :)

Pero vamos, tu prueba y ya me comentas :)

PD "Too bad we did not touch face" jajaja

27 Mar 2015 Heartthrob

De acuerdo, Encryption sería overkill. Lo que haría yo, es usar la influence que te queda y cambiar dos copias de PAD por Adonis/Eve.

Ojalá que pudiera incluir mas ShiKyu también. Pero no sé que descartaría para incluirlo.

Voy a probarlo este fin de semano. I'll touch some faces, jeje.

28 Mar 2015 esutter479

This is impressive, Erik. :) I think when I'm off my Argus kick, my fiance and I might just have to have a field day with this build. I wish I had more time to devote to competitive play locally. I really like the Red Herrings in here. I'm guessing money isn't a super huge issue for ya? Including 2 Babies seems fun too. :D I run 3 Babies and 3 Snares in my RP deck to mess with rig building early on, and for the most part it works. Dydra brought up an interesting proposition when I posted it and recommended Shocks instead of Snares. I'll probably have to give that a whirl too, sometime. Ramble ramble...either way, congrats on all your success with this new monster! :D

28 Mar 2015 Erik_Twice

@esutter479

Well, money is an issue in so far the deck needs a grotesque amount of it to win , but it's not an issue in so far you only need a few credits to prevent the Runner from winning. It's odd, I know =P

I'm not that fond of running Babies (ha! love the term) or Snare! on taxing decks but I can't deny they can work well and sometimes they eat one and die so :)

Thanks a lot for your kind comments esutter479

28 Mar 2015 esutter479

I was just looking at the last part of your write-up. Would you rather have 2 Tollbooths or perhaps 2 Wormholes than the Lotus Fields maybe? That would fill out the influence and give you a stronger code gate in the process.

28 Mar 2015 Erik_Twice

@esutter479

I tried Tollbooth, but it was too expensive. Wormhole...I don't think it would work, since it requires another rezzed piece of ICE, which is a problem, and the subroutines you can copy aren't very good. Half of the time it would leak up accesses because it copies damage and the other half it foces me to spend money to copy Tsurugi's subroutine.

I don't know, I'm not fond of them.

28 Mar 2015 esutter479

Hmm...Inazuma perhaps then? Trying to think of CGs that are 2 inf., heh. Hourglass can possibly wreak havoc, as well.

28 Mar 2015 esutter479

Wait, nm...Inazuma is in faction. RSVP is another viable option, IMO.

28 Mar 2015 CJFM

@Erik_Twice Architect may be the best two influence ice for what you're doing.

28 Mar 2015 esutter479

That might be true, but I don't think he wants to be without CGs, unless he decides to go one less of both Komainu and Tsurugi.

29 Mar 2015 Erik_Twice

@esutter479

I really don't think there's a good replacement. Inazuma is combo ICE and you need all your deck to be self-serving, specially since you won't stack it on your centrals. Hourglass could work, but it really only punishes the Runner with Snare!

RSVP is better than Lotus Field, but it has two flaws: The first is that it does nothing against Account Siphon, Datasucker and Wanton Destruction and the second is that it doesn't prevent archives from being flipped. Given how little ICE I can afford to run, these are pretty big issues.

@CJFM

Architect has become so common in my metagame that everyone plays Mimic so I don't think it's worth a slot, it wouldn't do anything Pup wouldn't. And I would rather at least one code gate, I think :)

Thanks for your suggestions you both, though :)

30 Mar 2015 chrispedersen

I did quite a lot of testing with IG early, and made some fairly popular IG decks.

EBC will let you tutor snare. You could then choose to add kitsune to your deck. In these circumstances account siphon is useless due to your number of assets. So I will often leave hq devoid of ice (although not against a likely wanton deck).

You missed the point about subliminal I think. You recover them to hand and then trash them. So even if the runner ran you last turn, you have have 2-3 in archives.

31 Mar 2015 dreamlike_villainies

Record Reconstructor, a card most people have treated as binder fodder, is pretty much a hard counter to this identity. Here, have a Shock! back and wipe out your trash cost increase. I'll go soak 1-3 net damage to put a stop to all this Hostile Infrastructure.

Just goes to show the evolving meta.

31 Mar 2015 Jotery

Great deck. Glad to see this Id getting some love. Have you considered power shutdowns?

1 Apr 2015 rezwits

I love the 54 cards, I actually found I like 59 cards, agenda wise and because it gives me extra crap to throw in archives, namely 3 Shock! and 3 Shi.Kyū. These are just trash but they aren't when they are in archives. I feel this identity is a 55/15 or 50/15, because you just have to pad the deck. So when they made the identity they just gave the ability to it and said well if you can some how get the deck to 49 (45) cards then more power to you. But I couldn't and still make it effective.

1 Apr 2015 juliandark

I feel this deck would get wrecked by eater (as they can flip all cards in archives without accessing them) or someone with enough imp counters to trash the assets.

But I LOVE seeing Sundew playable outside of RP.

1 Apr 2015 chrispedersen

@juliandark

Julian, that's not the case.

The runner runs archives, pays the tax to break the ice, and flips the cards. Click + credits tax- just like RP. This gives you a one turn window to kill assets, for their regular cost. So the corp is controlling the runner's actions.

In the worst case - the corp fills trash with 3 subliminals on the next turn...

3 Apr 2015 Evilawn

I might be a tool for not seeing it but wouldn't Hadrian Wall be a better card than ashigaru? Even if you can only fit one in there, it's 1 more cost and it is relatively as taxing depending on your meta (assuming 5 cards in hand, 4 str + 5 sub routine = 7 Credits for corroder. Then for hadrian 7 str + 2 sub = 7 credits again) it seems more reliable :s I guess it might not even be an important part of the deck lol but I just wanted to point that out. Also obviously if there's lot of darwin out ashigaru wins, but against wanton destruction hehhh (unique scenarios I know). Obviously in the end you need the influence for it. Looks like a very fun decks grats for making it work!

3 Apr 2015 esutter479

If Morning Star is rampant in your meta, then yah, Hadrian's Wall may be the better choice. I gotta say, though, Ashigaru can and WILL lock runners out of a server if they're relying on Corroder to get in. Even Cerberus "Lady" H1 will only last for 2 runs against Ashigaru.

6 Apr 2015 Erik_Twice

@Evilawn

The great thing about Ashigaru is that it's a slighty more expensive Tollbooth that cannot be easily passed by Femme Fatale. In that regard, it's far superior to Hadrian's Wall which WILL get Femmed and bypassed by two credits instead of five. Its only weakness is Morning Star which I've only seen once and which I don't think is competitive in the world of Curtain Wall spam.

It also completely wrecks Lady, which is hilarious :D

@juliandark

If they pay 4 credits, a click and possibly a point of damage from Hokusai Grid, just to be able to trash my assets at a normal cost, then I'm more than happy to let them do it. And Eater really sucks if it doesn't let you trash protected Hostile Infrastructures or stacked upgrades.

@chrispedersen

No, no, I got it, I just don't think I have slots for a card that only fills up archives. I do like Kitsune, though, I think one can make a more flatline-focused version and use Kitsune to get them to take damage though right now Snare! is one of the first cards I discard.

14 Apr 2015 wittela

I used this in a small local tournament and finished 2-2 with it. Not bad considering I had only played it one time before that. Of the two losses, my more frustrating was when I couldn't get any ICE and lost my economy to repeated Account Siphons. Conversely, my scoring win was through a strong economy with Melange, protected by an ICE and Caprice, and a Sundew protected by one ICE. I also had an easy flatline win against an overly aggressive runner. I plan to stick with this deck for the next few tournaments. The competition will get stronger, but I hope my growing familiarity will offset that.

17 Apr 2015 parasitetwin

I played four games against a Leela with security testing, 3xfaeri, emergency shutdown, desperado and account siphon and lost every single one of them. Is that just an insta-lose matchup or am I doing something completely wrong?

18 Apr 2015 Erik_Twice

@parasitetwin

No, I don't think you were playing wrong, it's an awful matchup. Bloodlock in its current incarnation is a very slow deck that relies on having open remotes which means they'll draw AND play several Security Testings and deny your whole gameplan. Siphon, Faerie and such aren't too worrysome, the problem is Security Testing.

We have been discussing how to solve this. My bet is on more ICE to put Sundews behind, but the ideal solution is a powerful current that protects remotes. One of our local players vouches for Enhanced Login Protocol and I'm temped to try Manhunt despite it being terrible against Runners with link. But we need to do something because the deck right now is in a very bad spot against it. I've even considered SEA Source to get rid of the Security Testings and it may work, but it's not fully reliable.

I didn't notice at first because my meta hasn't had Security Testing for a good while. So if you have any suggestions, I'm all ears.

@parasitetwin

I'm glad to hear you took it to a tournament, I'm flattered :) It takes some time to get used to it, against Siphon I mostly stick to dropping assets and playing around it. The key is sticking a Sundew or (preferably) a Melange. If you have a Melange, you are probably going to win because their denial becomes meaningless.

20 Apr 2015 Myriad

My suggestion is find room for x2 paywall. It will net you more than 3 creds against any security testing deck. Their economy is built off of the run! Might as well get a sure gamble+ in there.

As for what to cut, that is the big question. But cutting two cards to slot in two paywalls will at least get you some decent passive cash on the side.

22 Apr 2015 drewlawson

Erik,

I've been playing around with this deck with a couple tweaks, and it's a ton of fun (for me)! A few people have talked about going up to 59 cards—do you have any experience doing that? Has it worked out well or no?

22 Apr 2015 Erik_Twice

@Myriad

I've been testing currents, which are very strong in this deck and I've found that Paywall Implementation will give you around 20 credits, which is not quite enough to compensate the Runner being rich himself and being able to trash your stuff. Enhanced Login Protocol is the better current of the two, specially since it makes central runs only possible on clicks 1&2.

You should cut out the Red Herrings, they are not really useful compared to the other stuff.

@drewlawson

You rely a lot on some key cards (Hostile Infrastructure, Jackson Howard, Hokusai) which would be harder to draw with 59 cards. Since milling yourself is no longer an issue with 54 cards, I see no reason to increase to 59, specially since that would put another agenda on the deck.

22 Apr 2015 hbarsquared

Now that Crick has been spoiled, how do you feel about it in this deck? It seems like it would be better Archives protection mid/late game, allowing you to reinstall Hostile Infrastructures and Sundews without using a click. You could maybe cut an Interns for a one-of?

29 Nov 2015 ahocorasik

I think that Targeted Marketing would be great to deal with Imp/Account Siphon this deck is prone to. Especially that you have influence to do that.

29 Nov 2015 Erik_Twice

@ahocorasik

This version of the deck is very old, you should check this one which is more recent and better suited for the current metagame. netrunnerdb.com

Still, one of the strenghts of this deck is the huge resistance to Account Siphon. Imp is not an issue with good play in newer versions of the deck since you can put your early assets behind Crick.