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My humble thoughts on Quetzal, and why I don't think she will be very good(Please prove me wrong)

Alright guys, tonight was the second night I went and played with my playgroup using a Quetzal deck. I was running a build using Account Siphons, Darwin, Knight, D4v1d, and E3. The other deck I have been seeing a lot is the use of Overmind+Deep Red. Here are some of my thoughts(I reached after talking about this at some length with my playgroup) on why i don’t think these decks will work(I really want to like Q, so please tell me I’m wrong)

The problem with the focus on AI breakers is that, while you can get through any ICE, it isn’t as consistent, monetarily or otherwise, as a standard breaker suite.

With Darwin, once you get it to a decent size, if you are also running datasuckers, parasites, or mediums(which I feel most would), your day is ruined by purges. Once the purge happens, you have to wait multiple turns to get back up to strength, in which time the corp has plenty of time to get set up, or recover from damage you have done to them. And having out Knights to break everything while you recover isn’t entirely feasible. This is the problem I suffered.

With Overmind+Deep Red, the problem is that, although you don’t have to spend the counters when you have E3, constantly having to spend money to get up to strength from 0, then using creds to break the subroutines instead of counters, doesn’t make sense. Why not just run regular breakers that already have a base strength, which will save you money? Yes, then rig building becomes a problem, but if you are only running 3 Overmind(or 3 Darwin) then you should be running some kind of tutoring anyway. I think using a standard breaker suite would save you money here.

But then you need out of faction tutoring, because Anarch doesn’t have much in that way(Djinn for Darwin, yes, but then the purging again). And then you need draw power(John masanori?), and if you want to run Overmind, probably more money than usual(Maybe Account Siphons? Or Desperado+Security Testing?).

As you can see above, most of the cards I mentioned including are Crim cards. This comes to my main point of why I don’t think that Q is that great(for the time being, who knows what Order and Chaos will hold): She is a Crim identity. What I mean is that her ability emphasizes running, running early and running often. But the best support cards for that play-style are Crim cards, and we don’t have enough influence to splash everything we need to make it effective.

Anarch is about disruption. Noise mills your needed cards, Whizzard denies your assets, Reina disrupts your econ with her ability. Q doesn’t really disrupt anything besides barriers. It makes it easier for us to get into servers, easier for us to make a lot of runs, but I don’t think that is what Anarch is all about.

Let me say, I really want to use Quetzal. I love the idea of breaking a Heimdall for 2 creds with E3. And I tried it, and I won some games, but I also was just totally shutdown some games because of the problems mentioned above. I don’t think the deck is consistent enough. For the time being, I don’t think Anarch has enough to support her playstyle because her breakers aren’t as efficient as Crim and Shaper without datasuckers supporting them.

Also, I could be totally wrong. I really want some guy to come on here and put a decklist that is just great and works for some reason I never thought of. I would love to hear all your thoughts, provided they are given in a nice way.


This is pretty much where I’ve landed. She’s a Criminal ID in Anarch, which is the least able to support the style needed. No in-faction support for rigless running (Faerie, Inside Job, SMC, etc.), no in-faction abilities that trigger off of breaking ice subroutines (E3 + Crescentus)… and because it’s once/turn, no way to benefit from some of the key Anarch cards that tend to require multiple runs/turn.

With Hivemind (to pump all Parasites) and Virus Breeding Ground (to boost Darwin following wipes) she might be more useful, but… I dunno.

Going to play more with SamRS’s proposed build (swapping Reina for Quetzal) and seeing how it does more. Might have legs, just don’t know if they’re better legs than Reina’s.

I dunno, though. I like the idea of being able to invalidate (in whole or part) a solid chunk of ice and obliterate the rest. I’m just not sure if Global Warming strats are feasible.


back to basics anarch is always a good place to start testing from.

fixed strength breakers + parasite/datasucker. influence is usually something like 2 special orders, 2 legwork, 3 quality time and 2 modded. the rest of the deck is mainly just money and some way to pressure RnD like medium or keyhole.

the temptation is to build around the IDs in netrunner but when you do that the tendency is to build on a unstable foundation of trick cards instead of breakers and money.


I agree. I think @SamRS was spot on in his First Contact evaluation thread. She has a powerful ability, but without a clear strategy to take advantage of it. She really wants to be running powerful run events, but they all cost influence and Reina does account siphon better because she can take better advantage once it has landed. Also, it’s not like Anarch have terrible fracters that they are desperate not to run. Quite the opposite. Playing Quetzal makes it less optimal to run your best in-faction breaker and that isn’t appealing.

My thought on quetzal are quite similar. She could be a real beast early game, cause the only cheap early game ice thats good against overmind, my breaker of choice in a quetzal deck, is barriers like wraparound and eli.

So an early overmind with like keyhole could be very nice. The question is, can she keep up the pressure? my problem is that with her ability, i want so many out of faction cards, that in the end, i think noise is simply the better anarch.
At this state of the game, i think she would be great in shaper or criminal, but is okish in anarch.

I really want Quetzal to work, do somewhat agree with the above, but will be testing some more to see what works (or not). It seems like the conundrum is - “I can get in early, but then what?”

Maybe Quetzal just isn’t intended to keep the game stuck in the early like we’ve been thinking ala Siphon Reina? More of a tempo mid-game because you do need that Anarch lag time program setup and don’t have the event tricks of Crim/Shaper. The corp spreads their non-barrier ICE thin across 2+ servers and then you go it’s easiest, poke holes with Parasite/DS. Just a thought.

Regardless of where she ends up I do believe Crescentus + Clone Chip will be very strong for her.

I have the same reservations when it comes to Quetzal. If it would be any other type of Ice it would be something else entirely. Barriers are barely a problem for anarchs. Quetzal just allows faster access in the early game and might be a blank id later, while the others still have uses.

What? It’s never* a blank ID.
Ah, I guess you were saying “might as well be a blank ID later”?

You are right of course and you read my mind flawlessly. I hope I never have to play a psi game against you. :smile:The idt will still save a credit every turn you break barriers, just don’t think it is really better then the others anarch ids.

It saves 3 creds on bastion/rainbow click on eli, 2 creds on wall of static. Not just a credit.

From my opinion, Quetzal deck should be ice denial deck with recursion of parasites and crypsis/darwin support. Srubbed, ice carver, datasuckers and 3 clone chips. Forget e3, it is not as good as you think about it.


I’ve not played her much, but my evaluation out of the box was that she would never see play beyond month 1 because you can’t pick her AND Noise. Basically when it comes to anarch, you’re either playing Noise, or you shouldn’t be playing Anarch mostly. Quetzal doesn’t bring too terribly much to the table. If AI breakers didn’t exist, then I could see it, because then most ETR would be taken care of by installing 1 breaker.

My only idea with quetzal is to run low on cash, use Cerberus breakers with overmind and spend 0 credits breaking subroutines. Her ability saves you OM and other breaker counters. I don’t really think her time is here yet.

After some evaluation this weekend on OCTGN and a number of in-person games yet, I had this gut feeling that she just wasn’t quite there yet. It felt like I had a really cool ability and then nothing to do with it; opponents would just not play barriers, which didn’t really seem to affect their gameplan at all, while I had to scramble to play the game like usual, effectively netting me 1 link and a blank ID.

I also feel like E3 is something of a trap, but building heavy into E3 is also why people are building heavy into AI, I figure.
Probably not worth it for a traditional Anarch suite build.

I think the Anarch Cerberus head will help with at least some of that, and maybe it’s even worth revisiting the “rigless running” aspect at that point - it’s a little more expensive than a faerie (3 vs. 0), but it serves a lot of the same purpose - low-cost breaking of sentries that could otherwise cause a nasty setback. Unfortunately, one card is just one card, so I’m tentative about it even then.

It’s weird, elsewhere people are reporting excellent results with her; but of course you never really know what level of opposition they’re facing. Stimhack > BGG > Facebook IMHO.

I’m inclined to agree with all of the above. She has a strong early game ability, but currently Anarchs are not well-placed to exploit that. From the mid-game onwards it turns into a reasonable economy ability, presuming you’re playing a “small” Fracter - she’s probably less value it if you’re playing Morningstar. I think Keyhole is a big card for Quetzal - it’s best in-faction multi-access/destruction card all in one.

That all being said, Lukas has stated in interviews recently that the first two deluxes added new archetypes to factions that were already strong. The new box will up the ante for the struggling factions and both Anarch and Weyland are in line to get some seriously cool stuff that has not yet been spoiled. I’d be very surprised if Quetzal didn’t receive some useful tools in that box. Similarly, Weyland may well get a boost too and they specialise in barriers, so that could improve the power level of Quetzal.

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No lie- I went to a 14 player tournament and went undefeated 4 rounds with Quetzal. The deck did well, but it was only in part to Quetzal. In fact, while I used her ability, it was the ability and E3 interacting with Eli that was the saving grace (and it was magnificent spending 1 click, the ability and 2 credits to get through double Eli).

The deck could be run out of any anarch ID, and would still probably be better out of Noise because you can save the 4 influence on E3. That’s where I totally agree with Sam. Still fun, still effective, can potentially be brutal depending on what ICE the corp starts with. ICE wall and Wraparound can suck it, Eli can suck it. Noise is the best Anarch ID right now, even with those advantages.

Here’s the deck. Not refined, but it may be a good starting point if you’re interested in checking her out.


Just a free spirit, man. (45 cards)

Quetzal: Free Spirit

Event (14)
2 Account Siphon
3 Deja Vu
3 Quality Time
3 Queen’s Gambit
3 Sure Gamble

Hardware (5)
2 E3 Feedback Implants
3 Grimoire

Resource (5)
3 Liberated Account
2 Same Old Thing

Icebreaker (8)
3 Knight
1 Mimic
3 Overmind
1 Yog.0

Program (13)
3 D4v1d
3 Datasucker
2 Imp
2 Medium
3 Parasite

Parasite the small ICE, D4v1d the big ICE. Knight and Overmind anything else. Queen’s Gambit is amazing in the meta right now with all the asset economy. I triple advanced 2-3 Ash during the tournament and 1 Caprice. I triple advanced what I knew was an agenda to get enough cash to deep dig and win. Queens Gambit… I’m just saying.

Edit: The most important part is what everyone has already pointed out: the E3 interactions with the AI breakers/d4v1d. Also randomly fucks HB players, like really hard.

I keep thinking this, I keep trying it, and then everytime I play the blasted card it’s always on a 3/2 that the Corp has randomly stuck down.

Also, don’t corps just rez everything straight away when they realise you’re playing it?

When Queen’s Gambit came out I tried to make it work (free, in faction Lucky Find for anarchs) but I had a similar experience. It seems to be working now, maybe I just got lucky.

The corp players were not just rezing right away. Maybe that’s why I was successful with QG. Then again, If they react in that fashion I’m not too upset because they’re giving up a good amount of hidden information.

I’ve been running bank job and queens gambit, 2 of each, in my noise deck and the cash is phenomenal! (aesops bank job after taking 7 credits off it!)

The key is to wait until they don’t score a card for a turn, you’re looking to target upgrades.

Also when your game sense is developed, knowing you’re up against a good opponent who knows you can get in (1 ice when you have a knight installed), you can safely QG it, because it can’t be an agenda unless they’re playing a level. NH installing a card naked to draw is another good target. Vs. RP most are running 6x2for4 and 3x3for5, so every agenda must be advanced. The second queens gambit you play might merit some more investigation though :stuck_out_tongue:

I actually have a pretty good track record with Queen’s Gambit as well, when I bother to stick it in a deck. (I get a lot of Jackson Howards with it.) I think Queen’s Gambit is played so little right now that people don’t pick up on the obvious method of shutting it off; i.e., rez everything.

Hey buddy! It’s Corey (Corwin)!