Fine Tuning the Machine: Relearning Supermodernism

Originally published at: Fine Tuning the Machine: Relearning Supermodernism - StimHack

Discuss the latest StimHack article on SuperModernism from our newest author @TheBriarfox here.


Stimhack is the best



Excellent writeup - you’ve made me want to whip out supermodernism again and school some fools!

On the potential negatives, I think standard ‘the deck’ style Andy is one of the worst match-ups playing this style - do you? She’s just so reliably able to find the plascretes and get a decisive rig up.


Nice writeup! I love Stimhack and the people that write here are the best. My takeaway is that “we” haven’t been missing anything: it’s Weyland being Weyland, punishing mistakes hard. The Junebug is great; I won several key matches in the 2nd big BGG/OCTGN tourney with my Weyland-rush-whoops-that-was-jinteki-trap deck.

This doesn’t do anything to change my opinion on Weyland overall, though. I played a very similar build/approach at Nationals last year (11th after swiss), and it was a huge liability against top runners (like @spags / Wisconsin meta, TC guys, the casters here, etc). So I’m, respectfully, still in “plz show me how it works against good competition” mode, not just win/loss records.


My sparring partner, Aaron Andries, has been playing Weyland w/Snare (essentially what became SupMod) since the game’s inception. He rode it to the #1 Swiss seed at Gencon '13 and top 4 at Worlds. He did note that if he were running my HBFA/Destroyer deck at Worlds, he prob. would’ve won it all. It utterly failed him v. top players. Perhaps it fairs better under the new double elim, but in the old match play system, it (like most damage dex) was a liability.

One positive thing about the ‘decline’ of Weyland is that people MAY (big may) stop packing 2-3 Plas in every deck.


The best thing about the Rise of Competitive Jinteki (if it is indeed happening) is that it might overload the Runner’s ability to run all of the hard-ish counters: plascrete vs. meat, Deus X / FF versus net, clone chip / TR / Sharpshooter / Faerie versus destroyers, etc. I, like most Weyland-players-at-heart, look forward to that day :).


and the Weyland deluxe box

A very nice article! I disagree on a few points of deckbuilding – I think the three snares protect against multi-access very nicely, and to quote the person who runs Supermod around here “Jackson Howards are for cowards.”

I can see how the deck’d struggle in Top 8 play, but I think it’s still fairly strong overall, and

One thing that I think is a big mistake in the article though is the pass-over of Power Shutdown. It’s not there to kill Plascretes (usually) or anything like that. It’s to kill SMC and Faerie so that the runner isn’t safe – or has to blow more resources/slow down further in order to become so. We know very little about Weyland in the Lunar Cycle – their ID and two other full cards, and a rough idea of a third. I can see them picking back up soon, between Blue Sun and a few new pieces of Ice/operations.


@groober Andi is a tough row to hoe regardless. Being able to see nearly a quarter of your deck off the bat like that is just stupid. But you also have a reasonable idea of what she’s going to try to do. It’s up to you to disrupt that, force the runner to play ball on your terms, waste clicks and credits digging for/installing plascretes. Andi tends to come down to more of a race then a lot of other IDs, but it’s one you can totally win.

@hypomodern I’m TheBriarfox on OCTGN too. Look me up and we’ll play a few.

That being said, this build did beautifully in Chicago, including against what went on to win the day.

@GreedyGuts Power Shutdown is totally a thing, and it did work once or twice when I still ran it. It’s just not my thing. I’ve experimented with it and it just never clicked with me. YMMV, and it definitely demands consideration, but SMC, Faerie, and even Parasite, just weren’t that big a deal for me. Dropping them for PC is absolutely a personal preference call.

Again, Scorched is a backup win con and mostly there to put the fear of meat damage into the runner. The runner digging for/wasting time and money playing Plascrete isn’t a bad thing, it’s time and money they aren’t spending directly interacting with you/setting up a rig.


Great write-up.

I think the omission of Snares as well as the choice of Punitive over Power Shutdowns are a step back. A timely Snare is the only way you’ll be able to flatline good runners. Power Shutdown is there to get rid of SMC/Clone Chip, Datasucker and Faerie and turn on your Grim and Archer. Should the runner fail to play around it, getting a Corroder is also good.

Junebug is a hit and miss card, even if Weyland agendas offer the best bluff play alongside it. Punitive isn’t that great unless they steal 3, and Plascrete makes it a dead card even faster than it does Scorch.

All in all, solid article.

I keep coming back to this back and forth. I really don’t like the dead weight feel of Snare, even if the logic makes sense, and it’s pointless to try and bluff it in a server, since most runners won’t come near it once they see it sat for a turn unrezzed and unadvanced. I’m probably just bad at playing it. That’s why I swapped it out for the ambushes. I have much better luck catching people that way. But I can’t ignore how much it fits.

Same logic for Power Shutdown. It’s a killer card, and it does work, it just isn’t my style and isn’t all that relevant in my local meta (lotta big rig shaper, right now). But then again, you see it all over the place and it’s ability to do what you need it to cannot be understated. I’ve just worked hard to learn to play without it.

I guess it comes down to the choice between playing really good stuff you aren’t very proficient with, or running something a little more janky that you know you can be lethal with. In a lot of ways, that’s what the article is getting at. The default shell is the default shell for a reason, but you should never be afraid to tweak it, and make it yours. Especially if it works. In a vacuum, sure, stripping PS and Snare it could be seen as a weakening of the deck. In my hands, however, it’s been wholly effective.

It’s one of the things I love about Netrunner. You’re playing your opponent as much as you are his deck.

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Oh, yeah, and I can see how Punitive (wittling away at their hand, slowing them down) could be of some benefit, too. Definitely a playstyle thing, I just wanted to reiterate that there’re lots of ways to go with it, and that PS is still useful in a number of circumstances even without J.How, and mention what might be obvious in case it wasn’t to people less familiar with the deck.

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As I’m sure @Chill84 will attest, Snare is a card I’m ecstatic to see in an opponent Weyland, as our Kate run 2 Deus X, neutering 45-60% of your spent influence. I’m not sold on Junebug, as it suffers the same problem, though not as badly.

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@Lysander Much easier to bluff a Junebug here then a snare, even if the end result is the same. Then again, they may burn the fetch they were saving for the Deus Ex on some other breaker getting through, anticipating landing a Geothermal or something.

I’m building your list and will make folks at my practice tomorrow play against it and will report back :). I don’t have a windows machine at the moment, so OCTGN is a watching-streams-only thing for me at the moment. I’ll definitely be reinstalling my VM for nationals practice, though ;).

Excellent article. I’ll go on the record as a long-time Supermodernism player and say that I too prefer running Power Shutdowns and Snares in my deck. Power Shutdown is most often used to deal with Faerie, SMC, Datasucker, Corroder, ZU.13, Clone Chip, and the central-server breaker suite. Just about every dominant runner archetype in the game is running one or more of those cards. The Snares are typically what trips up the experienced players. Turn 2 runs hitting Snare and forfeiting False Leads. Turn 3 runs on R&D hitting Snare and forcing the Runner to choose between drawing up or dropping the tag (for which there is no right answer if you have a scored Atlas). I’ve run this deck with 3 x SEA Source and 1 x Snare, 2 x SEA Source and 2 x Snare, and 1 x SEA Source and 3 Snare. The 3 Snare version has been the most successful in tournament environments, and I think it’s because smart runners have learned to play around the early-game SEA -> Scorch and more easily fall victim to Snare hits. I do like the inclusion of Junebug… I quite love including Aggressive Secretary in my BABW variants, but there’s simply not enough influence room to throw them into GRNDL, sadly.


Good analysis of the archetype and I like your decklist with a couple exceptions in ice selection:

First, x2 Ice Wall and x2 Bastion. Considering you have GRNDL, Grim, Hostile Takeover, and Geothermal Fracking, Bastion isn’t going to tax the runner. Maybe it would work with Veteran’s Program, but that would require a weaker agenda choice and the right draw order. If you really want high-strength barriers, Ice Wall is the way to go. As a perk, you can prevent slow parasites, Morning Star, and counter Atman too. There’s no reason to at least go x3 Ice Wall x1 Bastion, but I think a better mix would be x3 Ice Wall x1/x2 Wraparound (AI kills Chimera and your light destruction theme). The fact that you can save 3 credits by using Ice Wall makes it an easy choice.

Similarly, I’m not convinced that Enigma is better than Quandary in this deck. Enigma’s main advantage over Quandary is punishing early breakerless runs. Most people aren’t going to run aggressively early against a scorch deck, instead searching for plascrete and economy. Quandary saves 2 credits per rez and does effectively the same job, especially in this deck.

Guard is an interesting card because it protects against a very narrow category of runner cards (Inside Job and Feint). Feint isn’t anything to worry about, worst case scenario is Silhouette exposing your only Junebug which wouldn’t happen enough to build around. Inside Job is a nasty card and Guard is good against it, but only if the runner doesn’t already have a sentry breaker. Instead, you might consider another 4-cost ETR sentry like Rototurret or Fenris. I would go with Rototurret because of the lower influence and synergy with program destruction.

Finally, a note about Jackson Howard. He doesn’t win games outside of the accelerated diagnostics combo (Which you are thankfully not using). He does however, prevent you from losing some games. Jackson Howard reduces variance and increases consistency with both of his abilities. On top of that, he is great at recursion when combined with Project Atlas. I would probably switch identities because of the need for more influence for all of my recommendations and play at least x2 Jackson Howard. You make a good argument about Power Shutdown, but I don’t think Punitive is better in this deck. I would include at least 1 Power Shutdown just so the runner is forced to protect against it.


I agree with you Zeb on all but Quandary. I really thought I would like it when it was spoiled, but contrary to popular belief, it doesn’t force decoders due to insta-Parasite susceptibility. I rarely choose it over Enigma.

Seconded. Also, people who play multiples of Quandary, Chimera and Rototurret in the same deck just make me shake my head in disbelief.

(and I’ll say I often encounter these in rounds 4 and 5 of Swiss so it’s not like they’re bad players, either)

tl;dr: quandary - not a fan.


I’m a fairly new player - around 1 month in, give or take.

I won three matches on OCTGN today with this exact deck. One scored out, two flatlines. One with a scorch after an Account Siphon, and one on a Junebug.

By far, I have the most success with this and the Scorched Imaging decks.

I’m sure competitive players would own me regardless of the deck, but this one seems to be fairly effective.

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