Skorporate Town (1st place US Nationals)

BlueHg 372

For my Runner writeup go here.

I felt so lost on Corp for a very long time. I strongly considered @omnijeff’s Potential Unleashed for a while, but ultimately settled on the best rush ID out there because I’d either win or lose fast and conserve my mental energy for the next round. I based this deck off of @massisi's Euros list here. There were a couple of times the judge looked shocked that we were already done with the round because it went so fast. 30 minutes just chilling, drinking water, watching other games, or using the bathroom freed up a lot of mental energy and really aided my performance in a long tournament like this. Every mull I was looking for 1-3 agendas and at least one ice. You run low to the ground in this deck so you need your money agendas to propel your game forward. Don't be afraid to let an agenda get stolen if you can HS a crucial part of their rig (e.g. Turntable, TTW, breakers).

Deck Choice Highlights:

Standoff

This can be a huge boon or a huge liability. Having more fodder for your Tithonium, Archers, and Corp Town is great, as is using it for tempo or clearing an EStrike. If you get Turntabled, Hunter Seeker that card ASAP.

SSL Endorsement

This is the only real ‘defensive’ 5/3 Weyland has, so it goes in. The money is nice, but tbh you’re normally pretty comfortable running relatively low on credits until you can score a Hostile or an Oaktown. One line of play which I’ve won a non-zero number of games with is install single advancing this, letting them think it’s an Atlas, then double advance Audacity next turn to close out a game. Stay flexible. @massisi's list uses Graft instead, which has some merits, but your plan is never to score this mid-game, so the extra economical insurance if/when the runner steals SSL is why I chose it over other 3-pointers.

Project Atlas

Okay, obvious card is obvious. But there’s some special stuff I want to say about this because it will make or break your Skorp rush. Always try to get a single advancement out of this if you can. It keeps you so flexible; it can be your closeout Hostile, the missing piece of your Audacity/Project Atlas combo score, a Hunter Seeker to hit a key card, the Ark for their Levies/Paperclip, etc. One challenge I ran into this tournament was having Atlas counters and getting Clan Vengeance locked. For those of you who don’t know, CV has a lot of windows it can fire in, including after you Atlas for your game winning agenda. It’s a hard position to be in, and my games vs both @podoboyz99 and @samrs really tested that.

Ark Lockdown

Hits through EStrike, beats discard from hand. Don’t bin your breakers vs Skorp y’all.

Wraparound

Expected a lot more Aumakua. I saw one this tournament and by that point in the game this might as well have been a Vanilla. If you don’t expect turtle, this influence could be an Archived Memories.

Fast Track

Scoring agendas wins you games. This lets you get agendas. Easy peasy. But really, you want to go as fast as possible, and this card really helps that.

Hortum / Enigma

3x Enigma / 1x Hortum is probably right in a Val meta, but it’s awful vs Aumakua, which I expected a decent amount of going into the tournament. Joke's on me. Side note, it doesn’t feel good when Geist on PAD Tap Gbahalis Hortum and you both gain credits from its first sub. This one is a meta read; the facecheck is more punishing for Enigma, but Hortum is 5x better vs turtle.

Corporate Town

This is probably the spiciest include in the list. I was worried about CV lock, and this card warrants an immediate response. It has targets in a lot of matchups, including the prevalent TTW and resource econ. People have been sleeping on this card. @tzeentchling convinced me it’s a 1x not a 2x card because it’s an absolute blowout in some games, entirely dead in others. The second Corp Town became the second Fast Track, which is 100% the right choice. Killing their resources will hurt the Runner a lot, but getting and scoring agendas wins you the game. That said, this is great no matter when you use it because it costs the Runner tempo to break the 1x ice you have in front of it and then pay 5 credits to trash it.

The tournament.

DISCLAIMER. I don’t have great memory, as I showed in my last round when I completely blanked on what @pj20 had in his hand (and forgetting all my TTW counters). If any of my opponents or watchers notice I recounted something incorrectly please let me know and I’ll correct it.

DAY 1:

R1 vs. Izaac Swan @Swan (Valencia) / WIN

I rush out before he can find his breakers. Game is over in less than 10 turns iirc.

R2 vs. Cory Diers @stonar (Alice) / WIN

VIDEO

There’s more back and forth in this one. I ice Archives early, essentially turning his ID off, then score a Hostile turning him into Valencia. I remember RFG’ing one Paperclip to either Inject or Lockdown, and then I Hunter Seeker the second, then he lays down his third and I throw my arms in the air. Like I said in my Runner writeup, 3x breakers is good. I can’t remember exactly what ice I end up putting on my remote (Archer maybe?) and manage to rush the rest of the points pretty handily.

R3 vs Clint Sbiza @ramus (MaxX) / LOSS

MaxX is like an easy win for Skorp right? WRONG. Especially if you make silly mistakes and your opponent was top 2 Nats last year. I RFG a couple of breakers, and score 4 points worth of agendas (and an Atlas with a counter I think), then he lays down Turntable and proceeds to make me very sad. I Hunter Seeker/RFG it asap. He ends up on four points with his last Paperclip on the board, so I IA an Oaktown with a Hunter Seeker in hand ready to fire. He mills a Mad Dash AND I DECLINE TO RFG. Clint is so nice he even asked me if I wanted to do so! He proceeds to install Same Old Thing the Mad Dash for the win, and I facepalm until the next round starts.

R4 vs Sam Suied @samrs (Valencia) / WIN

I have agendas and ice early, but I know he’s on DDOS so I can’t just start jamming out behind one ice like I normally like to. I ice R&D/ice HQ/Hedge to start, then score a Hostile and a Standoff to build a two Archer remote which I just start scoring out of. He has his breakers but can’t get his econ up and running to threaten that kind of remote. He ends up installing all three Clan Vengeances and Zer0 and quickly has me in a solid CV Lock. I’m on six points with an Atlas counter, but can’t use it because he’ll just CV me. I draw into the winning Hostile on my second click, and stone-face install it in my 2x Archer remote last click, pausing between each action so Sam can CV if he wants to. He briefly considers chasing the remote, but decides it’s a bluff and just hits R&D and HQ and tries to stabilize his economy. He passes to me and I score the Hostile. Sam’s a great guy and he’s probably the best new friend I made at Nats. We were rooming together and we talked about deck choices a lot, so I think he directly contributed to my tournament win. Feel bad because I think this round knocked him out of the cut, but Sam’s an absolute saint and handles the loss incredibly gracefully, and continues to root for me in the cut the next day.

R5 vs Pete Johnson and R6 vs Ben Torrell are IDs, and I finish at top of the 8-4 split in Swiss at sixth. I’m over the moon happy, tempered only by the fact that Sam and my meta-mates Gustavo and Albert didn’t make the cut with me. We eat, drink (shakes), and be merry and I get a good night’s sleep.

DAY 2:

T16 vs Noah Podolske @podoboyz99 (Valencia) / WIN

I’m higher seed so I get to pick after seeing lists, and I directly tell him that if he’s on 2x breakers then I’m Corping. He is (and 1x Turntable to boot!). I score to six pretty fast with an Atlas counter, but he gets 3x CV online pretty fast. He uses a 3 counter CV to hit my Corp Town (though I think he was going for Batty or something else), then he does it again later to hit a Hunter Seeker (iirc) after stealing a Standoff or a Hostile. I Fast Track the last Hostile Takeover to bait the last CV, and he fires it, as he has to, leaving me free to use my Atlas counter. I have one card in hand when I mando draw into Audacity and almost commit a rules error by getting excited about FA’ing the winning Atlas, but manage to catch myself. Noah knows he’s on a losing plan, so his best lines are either find Turntable and steal something to neuter my Atlas or just run and lucksack into enough agendas on R&D. He grabs the Hostile from Archives click one, lifts an Oaktown off R&D click 2, then runs R&D again. I briefly consider Atlasing for the SSL to prevent a loss but then realize what a terrible idea that is because it makes it a 1/3 chance in my hand for his last click vice a 1/18 in R&D. He whiffs, then runs HQ last click and seeing the Audacity. Atlas for an Atlas then Audacity out my next turn.

Winners’ Quarterfinals vs Jon Moormann @IAMWALRUS (419) / WIN

Not much to say about this game. He’s on 419 Nexus, so I ice HQ, get a touch of econ, then rush before he gets his engine up and running. Very glad I rolled Corp for this game because his PU is brutal.

Winners’ Semifinals vs Raj Giri @grogboxer Ran this game.

Winners’ Finals vs Pete Johnson @pj20] (Geist) / WIN

VIDEO

So I kind of dread both my matches with Pete. He’s doing really well with underplayed strategies and decks, and although Skorp seems like it should have a field day vs Geist, my Skorp is all rush and doesn’t handle Gbahali/Grappling Hook well. I start off by mandatory drawing into my Corp Town and it’s all I can do not to raise my hands to the high heavens in thanks. T1 is icing an empty remote and HQ since he has Legwork and Embezzle; if he’s gonna wreck my hand, he’s at least gonna have to expend resources to do it. T2 I score a Hostile, then T3 I Corp Town/ice the remote and ice R&D. I forfeit the Hostile to rez it and kill his Maxwell James. There were a lot of good targets and I think this decision point is pretty contentious; others suggested the Gbahali or a Tech Trader, but I was on something like 2 credits at that point and couldn’t afford him using a Kongamato to get into HQ and then saving one of his more dangerous breakers on the remote. He immediately goes in and trashes it next turn (as he should), spending a Gbahali and a Grappling Hook and I’m totally fine with it because that gives me the time to score an Atlas with a counter then an Oaktown (the second by Battying a Rototurret trash program sub on Grappling Hook on approach to prevent Geist draw tempo). At this point I have an Audacity in hand which he’s seen about four times through Spy Cams and running HQ, and he blitzes a Legwork into HQ to try to fish out an agenda. He whiffs (5 card hand), but I think I could’ve played out a steal considering I had a Hunter Seeker and I don’t think he had Fall Guy out anymore. I Audacity out the Atlas next turn, then Atlas for the winning Hostile.

Grand Finals vs Pete Johnson @pj20 Ran this game.

I had a great time at Nats, and winning as a queer person during Pride month felt surreal but poetic. It was awesome to get to meet everyone and put names with faces, and the atmosphere was super friendly. Tbh I forgot I was on stream a couple of times because the general feeling was just like playing a new person visiting our meta in sunny San Diego. Special thanks to Ben Torrell (@dodgepong) for being da real MVP by streaming the entire thing AND still making the cut, which can be a thankless job. His PeachHack channel helped get me into Netrunner and without him I probably wouldn’t have kept playing. Donate to his Patreon! Also thanks to the #rainbow-coalition and #artist-colony channels for good talks; Sam and Timmy for the cut advice talks; Raj for his playmat Day 1; and Kris, Gustavo, Albert, and the rest of the San Diego meta without whom I’d miss out on a lot of good times. This community is amazing, and I hope it continues past the game’s official demise. I love you all. <3

5 comments
30 Jun 2018 pj20

Ooooo I'm sorry this decklist is illegal, since you used cards from the Core Set :p (JUDGE!!)

Jk, congrats again on the win, and DotW... this is such an amazing writeup, and you played sooo well during the tournament. I'm stoked AF for coming in second, obviously wanted to win, but you were obviously deserving of the win.

Still shaking my fist at that early Corporate Town tho lol

2 Jul 2018 Cpt_nice

As a fellow queer person, very happy for you that you won this tournament. While I hate the ID with a passion, I cant deny Skorp was a great meta pick. I watched some of the matches on stream and so many people were on zero Val. This deck says "bollocks" to that nonsense.

2 Jul 2018 BlueHg

@pj20 The poker face I felt like I needed when I drew it was real! I really enjoyed our games. :D

@Cpt_nice Yeah I hate the design of the ID too. I actually really enjoy Skorp vs Anarch games because they're so dynamic, but Skorp makes every other Runner faction cry. Proud to carry the ?flag to the win!

3 Jul 2018 lunchmoney

Another Skorp DotW. Nice :)

26 Jul 2018 LSK

Would you cut anything for Too Big To Fail?