OK, so Blue Sun is out and it's the new hotness. It can obviously do a lot of things well... but that's not what I'm interested in. The questions that I'm asking myself are "What are the things that Core Weyland does better than Blue Sun? Which of them are better there than in GRNDL?"
Looking over the various IDs:
- BS benefits greatly from asset economy (Adonis is particularly outrageous, but even Private Contracts are fine) and high-impact assets that normally need to be placed in the scoring server. This should in turn mean it's best-positioned to take full advantage of a "clean" (no BP) build, and glacier. Spending influence on high-quality ICE seems like the reasonable thing to do, because that investment is much safer from both negation (Knight, Femme) and destruction (Parasite). The ability to liquidate investment again significantly facilitates credit-dependent plays (Restructure, Punitive, SEA/Scorch, Ash). As a side benefit, (in addition to its normal use) Oversight AI sort of becomes Restructure #4-6, with the caveat of requiring two actions, another card, and delaying the payoff for a turn. Being a standard 45/15, the only disadvantage the ID brings is the opportunity cost of not being another ID.
- GRNDL has the advantage of starting cash big enough to make power plays, whether it's rushing, scorching or others. The disadvantages are BP (which means assets/upgrades will be inherently less valuable, especially if there are non-asset alternatives) and being only 45/10 - obviously they can manage, but this means they have to stick closer to Weyland's native card pool.
- BWBI is very sad and is still waiting for a card that will give you extra clicks for advancing ICE. Being able to grow Ice Walls (and now morph... well, morphs) free of charge is nice, but the click problem remains.
What, then, are BaBW's strengths? What got me thinking was this remark, over in the Keystone 2.0 thread:
If you add 1 credit to Restructure's gain, it becomes as good as Curtain Wall + OAI is for Blue Sun, money-wise. That makes it pretty obvious:
BaBW makes you money, sort of like ETF (weaker, but still). That's what makes it most different from the other Weyland identities:
* BS only makes you money in some cases, and it needs clicks, time and sometimes influence to do it.
* GRNDL doesn't make you money, it only gives you more money to start with.
* BWBI doesn't make you money, it gives you a discount on an action that costs money
BaBW mandates an operations-based economy (duh), thus technically leaving us free to decide whether to pursue the BP route. Looking over the list of currently existing transaction operations:
* Hedge Fund and Restructure were going in anyway
* Beanstalk is Hedge #4-6, so that's good
* Commercialization won't recoup its costs
* Diversified Portfolio doesn't play well with the operation-based economy our ID mandates
* Paywall Implementation might be interesting, if we go the "let you in, kill your ass" route. Still, fringe benefit
* Fundraiser definitely becomes better than it is in Jinteki. Whether it's good enough is a different question entirely
* Successful Demo doesn't seem worth it unless coupled with Troubleshooter - we can already get this much money without the pre-condition
* GLC and BLC are solid enough to be splashed elsewhere, and here they're further improved.
So, in order to make the opportunity cost of not having BS's flexibility worth it, it looks like we'll be wanting to spend at least some part of our influence on properly leveraging the transaction bonus. The way I see it, the best road to take is to pack 3 BLCs. This will turn us into a slightly slower GRNDL (with a little higher variance, possibly) with progressively bigger upsides as the game progresses. We'll effectively have only 9 influence, but that might be ok - GRNDL manages with 10, and most builds spend 2 of that on draw power, which is something we've got built into our econ splash.
So, let's assume we're better off than GRNDL. What are the situations where we're better off than Blue Sun, as far as trying to win goes? Let's be honest here - flatlining probably isn't going to be it. Whether SEA Source, Midseasons or Punitives, BS's instant liquidity will be more useful. The only thing I can think of where having a larger pile of cash on the enemy's turn is better are Ash and Tracers. That also sounds like going the BPless route might be a good option.
Along those lines of thought, here's my first draft:
Would BS be worse here?
Weyland Consortium: Building a Better World (Core Set)
Code Gate (4)
15 influence spent (max 15)
21 agenda points (between 20 and 21)
49 cards (min 45)
Cards up to Up and Over
Deck built on NetrunnerDB.
Some random thoughts:
- Not doing Jacksonless, because of that Chinese-Irish G-mod jerk
- No Power Shutdown for the same reason
- The one-of Archer has been pretty good in testing so far, people don't expect you to rez one when you don't have a Hostile scored - this makes it much easier to actually make it connect (and stick)
- Going clean means I get to run NAPDs, making overadvanced Atlas harder to spot. It also means Crisium Grid makes more sense, which is awesome because I love that card
- Changeling seems decent, and tends to end up swapped to Sentry mode most games. This in turn makes me more comfortable with not running a full set of Archers (and as a result, dropping Hostiles)
- Wendigo is more useful than I originally thought, and it's a very good outermost piece for the scoring remote
Now, what I'm interested in:
* Is there some (more or less) obvious thing I missed in my analysis? If so, what is it?
* Should some of my ICE pieces be the big, impressive Weyland barriers? If so, which and why?
* Should I be trying to run OAI, both to enable the Archer, and potentially to enable the barriers? (if OAI were to come in, it would probably be a 2-of in lieu of the Grids)
* Does the agenda spread look ok? Would you change something, and why?