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Are we not talking about Mandatory Upgrades yet?


I tried searching and did not find any topic for this deck yet. Germany is full of it apparently, and it got into Dutch regionals top8 as well.

I watched it play a bit, it seems very nice.

Anyone care to share some expert opinions or thoughts?


This deck outright lose to Andy sucker with sectesting and to anarch with scrubber/desperado. We playtested it at our last game night and it didn’t do well at all against econ denial / derezz deck with desperado econ engine.

Only worth if you don’t expect crim. So probably not as good as germans think it is.

Well, the thing is, you can keep your assets protected - especially the sexbots. And with Encryption protocol or two, the trash costs become ridiculous.

I played my glacier this regionals with 6 sexbots and pads and it worked great, I had all the money in the world. I had a bit more ice though, but still.

Lot of comments on the link btw, from Krystian and also from the original german pilot of the deck, and also a link to the grandfather of the deck: http://eriktwicereviews.com/netrunner-upgrades-incorporated-a-haas-bioroid-primer-part-i/

The decklist may seem janky but make no mistake - this is absolutly a top-tier deck.

This deck is the sensation that is sweeping the German meta at the moment. From nowhere, a player called Waldemar swooped in and got 3rd place at the North-German regionals. I used the deck myself since then and got 5th place in at the West-German regionals with little to no training. Another player (Putzlappen) won a qualifier tournament for the German Nationals with it (DMQT).

Let’s Talk Mandatory Upgrades

The deck has 3 of the agenda Mandatory Upgrades. It sounds like a joke but this deck list should really make you re-consider the agenda. The goal here is to score the agenda the regular way. No tricks. Just slow-advance it up to 6 in a taxing scoring server. Here are some reasons why this is so powerful.

If you get the agenda scored, you pretty much won the game. The fact that you can fast-advance many agendas isn’t even the main advantage. Just having 4 click turns is huge. You can purge and install. You can keep developing the board while churning out agendas. You can advance a previously installed agenda, score it and put another agenda in that scoring server ready to go next turn. The click advantage means you are likely to pull ahead of the runner very quickly.

The advancement requirement of 6 sounds daunting since you need 3 turns to score it. But it’s actually quite doable. You even have some leeway since you don’t need to spend ALL of the clicks of those 3 turns to keep advancing the agendas. A move I like to do its Install, advance on the first turn to fake out an NAPD Contract. Next turn advance, advance and use the 3rd click to keep developing the board. This second turn will often seriously confuse the runners. Are you baiting them into a super-taxing run on a NAPD? Is this an HB trap? Or is this just an awkward 5/3 score? The final turn is then advance, advance, advance, score. It gives you immediatly a 4th click on that turn. Note how you have an extra click on every turn of the scoring process to let you develop the board state, play Hedge Fund or whatever you need to keep tabs on.

Your servers are taxing enough to keep an agenda safe for longer than just 2 turns. Especially Noise often simply lacks the tools to seriously contest a server with Ash 2X3ZB9CY and Red Herrings in it. Most players won’t even try, not expecting the kind of advantage you will get from scoring it.

Finally, the most important advantage of Mandatory Upgrades is that it is a 2-pointer. I’ve never seen anybody comment on it, but this is huge. There are no 3-pointers in the deck. Which means both players needs to score 4 agendas to win. If the runner does manage to break into your scoring server and steal the Mandatory Upgrades they just get 2 points. And they will likely open up the scoring window to drive a second agenda through. The agenda seems like you are going out on a limb, but it is actually much less risky than most 3-pointers people are happy to run with.

The reason why there are 3 agendas in here is because you WANT to have it on hand when that magical scoring window opens. You also want to be able to lose it in a central server run and still have that option. Finally, you can try to make the runner concede by scoring 2x Mandatory Upgrades. Why not?

Asset Economy

Your have all the asset economy in the world. It will either make you rich or it will make the runner poor (and you still will be rich). Runners usually really don’t have the economy to trash all your assets. To twist the knife, you also have Encryption Protocol. There really is no good play against those. They can trash them, but they will waste money and time. They can keep them around but that will make your assets untouchable and, as an added benefit, your upgrades like Ash 2X3ZB9CY, Red Herrings and Crisium Grid become untouchable as well. You can easily get moments where the Ash 2X3ZB9CY trace will be cheaper than its trash cost.

That’s why Red Herrings is here. This deck is all about financial supremacy and Red Herrings allows you to leverage that even more. I had games where I played it on R&D making the runners bite their lips as I parade my agendas in front of their eyes on a super taxing multi-access R&D run.

Playing the assets requires some planning. Playing them naked may work against some Shapers. Against Criminals you’ll just create servers for Security Testing. Anarchs have the Imp. Better protect your assets. Don’t shy away from putting an Eve Campaign behind a Tollbooth. Play your Adonis Campaign in the scoring server. You want to create those win/win situations.

Imp may sound like a problem but it rarely is. It is very taxing for Anarchs to contest assets servers when they are protected by your ice. Don’t shy away from purging virus tokens to seal the deal. You have time.

Cards you may have issues with are Scrubber and Whizzard. Neither of those are very popular though. And they just mean you need to tax by protecting the asssets a bit better.


The decklist here is not the original deck by Waldemar. I swapped 1 IQ against 1 Excalibur for some additional tactical options. I’ve seen some people replacing the IQs with Enigmas and additional Vipers. One of the Wraparound can free up an influence for a Lotus Field.[/quote]

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I also discussed a bit with @ff0x about the deck and he seems also to acknowledge it’s power.

It’s a LOT of setup with not enough ICE to protect all your 3 centrals (because yeah you don’t want to have your archive being SecTested for 3 creds and a sucker token), all your sexbot and still find some timing window to score your Mandatory Upgrade.

I think it took people by surprise because for some reason, a lot of players think crims are low tier atm.

It’s not as we haven’t tried the deck @mtgred (arguably a good player) took it to our last game night and got absolutely crushed by @nuTella AndySucker. I played a couple of game against with Desperado Headlock on OCTGN and the game was also one sided. The Encryption protocol is good only if the runner doesn’t have sustainable econs to trash everything (which is actually the case for Voicepad Kate btw). If the runner can keep up and trash everything on sight, the deck isn’t nearly as good because it doesn’t play a lot of ICEs and still need to stabilize to be able to score a Mandatory Upgrade.

I also suspect Desperado / Opus / Vamp Valencia to utterly crush this deck.

While the deck certainly is playable (I piloted the grandfathered deck to a Chronos win) the deck is significantly better if the opponents don’t know the decklist. Only runners that don’t know the deck will keep Encryption Protocols around and let them stack up. Or let 3-advanced cards sit in remotes…

Also any runner that can put significant press on the economy can really hurt as scoring the first Mandatory Upgrades is really expensive. Compared to when ManUp was introduced the runners have much more efficient rigs now and the ICE has not kept the pace which makes the econ race much harder to pull off.

I played a modified version of this at the Wasau, WI Regionals on May 9. From that experience, I believe it is a bit ICE-light to reliably be able to protect the assets. Also it is rather vulnerable against derez tricks. Against Shaper, however, it was solid.

I also agree with Ilza that scoring Man Up is difficult, but it does deflate the runner a bit to spend a bunch of credits early on to steal what must surely be a 5/3 only to come up with 2 points.

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Exactly. It’s a good answer to PPVP Kate which is arguably all over the regional season.
It just suck hard against deck who can trash the econ engine and keep derezzing the ICEs. The Desperado Headlock is I think a really hard matchup for this deck. Same as Good ol’ Andysucker or even Leela.

I played a game against this on OCTGN with CT stimshop, and yeah, opus really craps all over this.

To be honest, I have not seen both Opus nor AndySucker in more than 6 months :smile:

I am not saying that it makes the deck shine, it’s just that if those are the counters for the deck - it sounds like a good idea to play it :smile:

I think EPL might be a very nice include in the deck as well, to tax/prevent asset trashing.

We tested it against Noise, and Imp/Parasite and open Archives made it fall over too.

Opus/vamp has become fairly common here (UK) as tech against RP, and this just happens to also fall to it.

It’s only a matter of trends. Andysucker / Opus deck disappeared because they weren’t reliable enough to beat NEH astrobiotic AND Komainu/Tsurugi RP at the same time.
Since worlds, RP stopped to play multiple sub sentry because it sucked against Kate / RegMaxx and opted for either Code Gate or Barrier, something Andysucker is good at breaking through. I think right now, Andysucker (with or without parasite) is well placed and if Andy become more prevalent, a lot of corp decks have to bend backward to keep their game against both Andy and Kate.

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I’ve been messing around with it, and the build I’ve liked the most was an HB Caprice Glacier with the Mandatory Upgrades. Since the deck I’m running doesn’t have the Red Herrings or the Encryption Protocols, I’m not sure it’s the same deck, but hey, Caprice really helps to score ManUps.

Caprice + Ash + Hudson = The Worst Server Ever; I don’t know if it was you, but I’ve played a few games against such a deck online at this point. I’ve walked out of each of those matches a winner, but it was all down to psi games. Caprice always made sense to me out of HB; With ELP in faction, I never understood why it wasn’t done more often. Guess people wanted tollbooths, etc.

Mandatory Upgrades is definitely a card that easily pivots into an HB win if it is scored. I guess brain damage threats from HB might be real enough to provide a scoring window for it? Honestly runners have probably forgotten that it exists, so now’s a good time to sneak 'em out as if they were traps or bluff the brain damage.

This sort of thing was definitely tried around here (10x 2pt w/MU) back in 2013 and the issue was usually that no runner would let the corp score a 6-advanced agenda :).

In short: I could see this taking the runner meta by surprise, and it is an extremely powerful effect that snowballs rapidly. I would expect that runners will adapt pretty quickly, unless we’ve made glacier Just That Powerful.

You can Mushin for it out of the new Cybernetics ID. Either way, if the runner gets it wrong they’ve probably lost - zero hand size or four clicks a turn.


Yeah, that’s a very strong play. New ID is scary :).

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Pretty sure I played against this deck in Stimhack League. I wasn’t paying attention at the time but there were definitely a bunch of mandatory upgrades in my score area at the end. :stuck_out_tongue: