I like what Hollis had to say here about the interview:
"He seemed to be putting an amazing amount of effort into sounding mysterious and enlightened, without actually putting the rest of us on to the path of enlightenment as well. The whole dancing around “hey, there’s a card I think is incredibly undervalued but I’m not going to tell you what it is!” (~20:28) was really weird. My experience is that when people do that sort of stuff, they are usually posturing to look more important than they are. However, Damon has a very extravagant persona in this interview – could just be that shaping his words.
I was really hoping to hear discussion of specifics. Instead, we mostly got high-level hand-wavy suggestions and implications that were incredibly difficult to evaluate or go out and test. His whole spiel about “How NBN aught to be played” was very motivating, but it also came across as naive. Specifically:
Damon said around 59:08 "So, NBN’s idea was always about taxing the runner. You want in? Come in. I don’t mind! I’ll even let you in. These four pieces of ice? Ohh Don’t worry about that! None of them are end the run. Ohh, and here’s a tag. Here’s two tags. What? You’re now six credits low? Excellent. Ohh this? Ohh sorry, Ghost Branch. Four tags. Now my turn. And i’ll lay this out, score it from hand because of all those tags you have and lay this out and score it from hand. You know, and that’s how that is intended to play…. "
I hope it is self-evident this is a best-case scenario. Stuff like this happens maybe one in fifty games. It is not actually a realistic expectation – more of a windfall. And even when situations like this have occurred, you have usually over-committed to a remote server and the runner is destroying you on a central somewhere. I sincerely hope that Damon isn’t advocating that NBN be played by waiting to get struck by lightning
The next thing Damon said was:
“You’re not supposed to put out agendas until you get your runner tagged. I get some tags, suddenly you’re super scared…”
This might be good advice against a mediocre, first-time opponent but against people you have past history with, or against opponents that can make assumptions based on meta-knowledge, this is such terrible advice that it makes me a little apprehensive about where A:NR is going.
On his discussion about Scorched Earth, maybe I misinterpreted what was being said, but it sounded to me like he was implying that Muresh Bodysuit was good protection against Scorched Earth. This was really weird, since it’s (obviously?) not. It has value against PSF lock that does a little meat damage over lots of turns, but it really doesn’t do anything against lots of meat damage all on one turn. I guess you could pair it with Public Sympathy, but Damon specifically said “Muresh Bodysuit” not “Muresh plus Public Sympathy”.
Lack of specific, realistic examples really detracts from Damon’s credibility in this interview. If he were a corp, he’d definitely be earning some bad publicity right about now.
In short, he came off as a snake-oil salesman to me.
As a final remark, since I just cannot resist it, I really enjoyed the comment at 1:01:40 of “I did in two or three turns of one click, one click, or you know one credit, one credit, do some other stuff, one credit. Ohh, you’re going to run [ohh, take three net damage]! So what I did in two or three turns, you now have to compensate for in one entire turn. So I can expand the work that I do and spread it out, but you have to do it all in one go because if you don’t – hey look, scorched earth… who knew! Or, you know, Neural EMP, Neural EMP, and you’re dead.”
I like this comment because it sets up a contingency: either this was an intentional design decision of A:NR and I have a good understanding of how to play the game (in fact Damon implies this is an underappreciated concept, so I can probably place myself well above average), or Damon presented this game concept in a slightly unethical way, (probably unintentionally) misappropriating it as his own.
Either way, the outcome lends weight to all my above comments (one by way of expertise, the other by way of questionable motives of the speaker compromising the integrity of his words). For the record, my best guess is that I have a fairly good understanding of how to play A:NR well; I doubt Damon was forgetting to cite his sources."
Edit From Sneaky: I added the quote in full.