ANR Designer Appreciation Thread

I wanted to make this thread after listening to the latest Source podcast last night. I haven’t been following ANR casts for a time; I think this is the first time I’ve heard Boggs. I have read threads and comments about his community engagement.

I wanted to say in a public space how grateful I am to all designers of this game. Lukas, Damon, and now Michael: all have incredibly difficult jobs and have overall done an incredible job thus far. It will be exciting to see a new design approach with Boggs.

I took a break after Flashpoint, for a number of reasons. Just last week, I finally bought into the Red Sands cycle and am thinking about the game on a daily basis for the first time in a year. I largely attest this to the latest MWL, which in my mind ‘stirred up’ the meta as Boggs would put it. As someone currently playing a MaxX deck with 2 Rumor Mill, and a CTM with 2 (yes, 2!) Sensies, I am still able to play styles I love while also appreciating how much more fair the games seem. I applaud Boggs first iteration of the MWL, and look forward to his curation of it. He is already putting a lot of time and thought into it, and I think that’s great.

I also want to say thanks to Damon. He is a polarizing figure, but I think Boggs nailed it when he said that Damon made some of the most exciting cards in the game. It is very rewarding for me to consider the narrative of this LCG, and look back on all the metas of the past. Faust is one card that I will never forget, and while rightly MWL3 now, I am happy that the card was made, as I had tons of fun playing a number of decks with it. Many others could say the same about other cards. I give Damon credit for not being afraid to push the boundaries. He was also responsible for the MWL, a boon to the game IMO, and was very engaged with the community, which is always admirable.

Please keep this thread positive and respectful. Give thanks for particular cards and policies; share personal anecdotes of the designers; and express your sentiments looking forward under Boggs.


I am a fan of Dave Williams. Not only is he an old friend of mine, but was an original designer of L5R, 7th Sea, Doomtown, and more.

… oh, this is an ANR designer appreciation thread. My bad. :wink:

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Now that Spags opened the thread with non-ANR designers, I just want to remind you all that that Vlaada Chvátil designed Through the Ages, Mage Knight AND Codenames. I can appreciate that.


Very soon after I started playing ANR, sometime in the SanSan cycle, @dashakan played 7-point CI against me. He utterly lit me up (needless to say), but I still felt like I had a path to victory.

I was amazed that such a completely non-standard strategy could be pursued in the bounds of the normal “ice vs. breakers” game I had played up until that point, and (more importantly) that it didn’t feel like it totally broke the game. Even though horizontal strategies have gotten a lot of support in the last few cycles, this game is still quite remarkable for how many different strategies can be viable.

So, nice work, designers!


And Galaxy Trucker and Space Alert…

On-topic: MCH/Bio-Ethics are Lukas design, not Damon, aren’t they? Thought that while Damon was Lead when they were released, the cycles he was Lead during design was Flashpoint+Red Sands?

Oh yes I think you’re correct, will edit

To reiterate what’s been noted elsewhere, Mumbad was Lukas’ last as lead developer and designer. However, Damon was always there as a designer, as well. Plenty of blame to go around for that cycle.

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While he had his flaws when regarding game balance and his comments on he community, I think Damon did something extremely important for the game: He printed a lot of cards that were needed to “complete” the game yet didn’t exist. Namely:

  1. Playable Criminal breaker suites.
  2. Good 5/3 agendas (Elective Upgrades, Graft)
  3. Agendas in general (Armoured Servers, Net Quarantine)
  4. Solid broad strategy hate (Scarcity of Resources, Ark Lockdown, MCA Informant. Yes, he failed with Rumor Mill, but the rest of his designs are good)
  5. Good quality ICE (IP Block, Chiyashi, DNA Tracker, Veritas, Fairchild, Mind Game)
  6. Support for minor strategies (Find the Truth, Mass Commercialization, Kakugo, Anson Rose,
  7. New minor strategies (Jemison, Weyland moving advancement counters, Stinson+Reversed)

His work in that regard is very good even if his mistakes overshadow it.


While a lot of people blame Damon for cards that are unfun or above the curve, I would also like to applaud Damon for the design work he did during Creation and Control, which basically laid the foundation of Netrunner to come and made Shaper into an actual faction. SMC and CC are, if I recall correctly, designed by Damon.

I like to think that Damon is a fine designer but needed Lukas to make sure that his designs were not as unmoderated as the ones released during the later cycles.


I agree. I think the biggest fault in the Damon cycles is the lack of balance or moderation in design. If Damon had a little more balance to his designs, I think Flashpoint could have been the best cycle.

Of course a little humility to admit when something went wrong and react strongly to cards like Rumor Mill would also go a long way.


I’ll also thank Damon for the bin breakers. I really enjoy them as a nice alternative to the Core ones used for 4 years to that point.


Echoing the ICE remark. For the longest time people complained, ‘we can’t play ICE cause it can’t keep runners out’

Turns out we will play ICE, if you give us stuff like DNA Tracker, Chiyashi, and FC3. FC3 is the most impactful piece of ICE in the game since core Tollbooth IMO

The bin breakers are great design IMO, Paperclip is obscenely efficient but the others are backbreaking expensive, and yet they enable Inject and a new style of Anarch play, big impact runs (Shaper style) over the sustained pressure of Datasucker/fixed rig style