I've been inspired by that old classic list of @PeekaySK's, Big Girls Play with Monoliths, but I've given up on the idea of getting out the 18-credit bomb fast enough to not lose. PeekaySK's list is very tight, and all the parts interlock very well. I'm trying to rejig it to use Mass Install instead of the big M, and here's where I'm at so far:
Chaos Theory: Wünderkind (Cyber Exodus)
15 influence spent (max 15)
40 cards (min 40)
Cards up to Upstalk
Peekay's list is from C&C, so what's changed? Monolith gives you MU, install spam and economy (in the form of its 12-credit discount). Leprechaun and Sahasrara are program sources of "memory" and discounted installation. Overmind makes landing the first siphons much more of a sure thing. Spamming Mass Install also enables some scary-fast rig building, particularly with Sahasrara (Mass Installing Sahasrara + X doesn't cost you any extra than installing X normally).
How does my list go? Honestly, it feels like there's promise but it's not doing that well:
- Mass install is great. It turns siphon credits into board state quite well, and gives you an out if you have a little money and you're trying to big-draw into Freelance and it fails.
- If it sticks a siphon early, it can apply pretty good early pressure but then has a really rough time rig-building and going late (and your subsequent Overminds start sucking).
- If the first couple of turns misfire (3 draw events into nothing, for example), things get pretty tough.
So where to take the deck in order to make it really sing? I see two main options:
- If using Siphon as a source of funds, the third siphon is looking increasingly necessary to slow the corp down early. The Source just landed where I am, so Shoot the Moon is something else I have to worry about (and there was Information Overload before that).
- Abandon the Siphon/Overmind plan, and use all that influence to bring in some good cheap stuff. Lamprey now exists as an interesting source of HQ pressure and yet another cheap program.
I'm leaning more towards #2, because it seems like the Golden Age of Siphon Spam is behind us.
The deck also needs more card draw, because of all those times where you've spent two clicks drawing, have a zillion programs in hand and need to decide whether or not to go for the FCC/Mass Install. Options worth considering:
- Inject. The influence cost sucks, but paradoxically it's not as bad as it looks. If you save it for the awkward situations where you want to see events and not programs, it has potential. Consider replacing with Steelskin post-O&C.
- Earthrise Hotel. Giving up on siphon means that resources are an option again, and this is another 2 cards on those big Diesel-QT-Diesel-FCC turns.
A note on Ekomind: The brain looks potentially interesting because you can have a humongous hand mid-turn, install the Overmind and then drop everything afterwards. But since levy is going to leave you with a 0-card grip during its resolution, you'll only be able to keep one program across resets. What's the point of all those other programs if you're forced to trash them when you push the big green reset button?
Alternative engines: FCC is only 1 influnce, so Duggar's/Joshua B/Inject/NACH could make a decent engine. Harder to start, though, because of that delay on Duggar's. It gets better when Amped Up comes. Another Anarch engine for this sort of thing is Inject/QT/Steelskin. Anarch also have their own daemon, so you don't have to import Leprechaun. Importing Levy really stinks though.
Alternative IDs: Particularly if going the "cheap program" route, Hayley Kaplan looks really interesting. Has the same Sahasrara synergy as Mass Install but she allows hardware stacking as well as program spam.
After all that ramble, I'm looking for ways to improve the deck or do something similar with the burst card draw + FCC/Mass Install engine in a different ID. Any ideas?