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No more Netrunner


Apart from Mti being absolutely broken, Kitara has been absolutely excellent, yeah.


Now I’m a little bit saddened that this is the end. On the plus side, I’ve heard people are buying up a ton of Netrunner Data Packs, due to the cancellation. I’m hoping this means there will still be an active demand for this community.


Another lapsed player here. Been out since TD but always with an eye to get back in. Heartbreaking news. So many great memories. Thanks to everyone for everything.


Well, at least I’ve got an explanation why we had no cards in french since like monthes and monthes ago.
I’d say they know this since TD because the non-translation of TD was VERY shaddy. We still have no explanations. Result were it destroyed our community. Then we had the rotation that shattered the remaining ones.


A response from Damon on the question of what exactly the license is for:

i.e. it doesn’t actually have any legal effect. This is a commercial decision by FFG, not a legal one.

(if this sounds bitter, that’s because it is)


Still bitter about Fisk.

remorhaz out.


This is really interesting, and I’m pleasantly surprised that we haven’t seen a race to the bottom in this way. While people might be saying “screw the license” for Netrunner, just this once, breaking that equilibrium could get very ugly.


Well, it’s more complicated than that. Yes, you can’t copyright mechanics, but every single existing AN:R card referenced the name “Netrunner” as well as other terms that were copyrighted by WOTC. So yes, FFG could (still can) make a Netrunner clone, but the existing game would still have to end without the licensing in place.

(Also, WOTC would still drag them to court, and by the time a judge ruled in favour of FFG they will have spent millions defending themselves)


Is it an outlandish pipedream for some kind of ‘Kickstarter for the fans to buy the license’ sort of movement?

All you would really need to keep the game going is the license, enough money to get Boggs on board and the people of J-net. If there was a patreon we could actually pay the good folks at J-net, which I also think would be a good deed.

Granted, keeping the print game published might be too ambitious but the first step would be going all digital for awhile to get the ball moving, I would suppose.


To answer the obvious next question people might have: there’s theoretically nothing stopping FFG from coming up with a new card game in the Android universe that seeks to get all those ANR fans back. They might already be planning such. However, they have to know that WOTC will be watching them intently to make sure they don’t stray too closely to Netrunner-type rules. I imagine that if Asmodee and Hasbro butt heads, nobody wins, and that risk is weighing on FFG’s mind. So I wouldn’t hold out hope for Android Webhacker in 2019.


I don’t think this is correct. I’ll defer to a US lawyer on this, but quick Googling confirms that - like in the jurisdictions that I’m more familiar with - copyright does not subsist in individual terms. The relevant IP right for those is trademarks. I’ve looked at the databases for those and there aren’t any live trademarks to Netrunner.

So I’m sticking with this being a commercial decision and not a legal one. At the end of the day it doesn’t really matter, I suppose, but if FFG take the “our hands are tied” line, that’s not really true.

(I don’t disagree that it makes commercial sense, but I’m not really able to be impartial about the loss of the game!)


Netrunner was canceled once before. It will rise again.


My two cents thoughts on what is going on:

  1. There is a lot of talking about initiatives in several places (different FB pages, here, slack etc). This is all great and shows the love of the community for the game, however, I believe we should decide on one place and try to focus all our thoughts there, not to be dispersive and to act as a whole.

  2. People are talking about community made cards, in order to sustain the game after FFG stops doing so. Whereas I could even believe that some people in the community have the skills to design and publish card cycles that would lead to a new fun and healthy meta, I don’t think this is the way to go.

    The reason, I believe, for which netrunner has survived so far is that the community is highly centralised and compact. There are a few main hubs, each specialised in a single aspect of the hobby, which people into netrunner from all over the world refer to. Because of this we have been able to go on together, so far, with a community that can help, inspire, challenge and in general develop the interest and skill of new players.

    If we were to introduce custom cards, the community could fragment depending on whether the single local communities have the means to actually print out and distribute these cards in real life. Sure, playing on Jinteki is fun and very comfortable, but I believe that the RL interactions and relations that physically playing the game entwines are fundamental. Would netrunner be the same if it was only played on Jnet? And would you keep on playing both IRL and on Jnet if your physical card pool would be substantially different from the one used online? So, this make me thing that custom cycles might be a bit premature now.

  3. I am no game designer, but the current card pool seems to me wide enough to allow still for a few years of play (perhaps with adjustments of banned and restricted list). For this reason I would propose to focus first on replacing the Organised Play support. Making some custom tournament kits would allow to to keep the RL communities going and gauge the problems in the distributions of such kits. I think in the US you have already something going on with your pro player circuit, but in EU an equivalent thing is still missing (or not so well rooted). Just to say, could we finance the kits via kickstarter, for instance? This would be also a preliminary exercise if we intend to go full in with custom cycles (which would require some form of global distribution to ensure that they are accessible by all the local communities of the galaxy).


@V01d fully agreed.


It would take someone with some credibility in the community step forward and take initiative for any sort of forward progress to work. Theoretically, if maybe a well-liked youtube personality like Beyoken started doing videos about how he wanted to kickstart a way for him to purchase the license to make it open-source and raise funds to keep a designer working, it would be a great, more forward-thinking model for community/game design relationships.

Rather than talk about how the reality has always been that FFG has to run things a certain way that might not even always be the best course for the game itself in order to support their bottom line, why not consider a new grass-roots model where the game is free to evolve as the best game that it can be.


Well, there was a period of 16 years between the publication of the original Netrunner and Android:Netrunner…
I’m not sure I’ll still be around when that happens…


With regards to your 2nd and 3rd points, I don’t see why we can’t do both. In the short term, making sure there is OP after the licence lapses in October is the pressing concern, but if the community were to come together to produce new content, this is something that would take a significant amount of time and effort, so if for example we wanted to have something new released by this community group in Q1 of 2019, work would likely have to begin now.

I totally agree with your first point though, the biggest threat to what will remain of the game after FFG support disappears is splintering into many small groups all trying to do things slightly differently. I’m aware of the Netrunner Future Chat FB group and the #future and #future-op channels on StimSlack, which seem to be the main hubs for discussion right now and I would encourage anyone keen to be involved in or informed of the efforts to continue the game to check out those outlets and try to keep everyone together!


I think this is the last thing I’ll post on this because it’s veering towards off-topic, but my counterpoint to that would be that if we were in a world where publishers felt that it wasn’t taboo to make their own games with the Netrunner mechanics, they would need to distinguish their games by other means. Like better organised play support, or better prize support, or better curation of the active card pool, and so on.

In a world where it’s felt that only WotC are “allowed” to use those mechanics, it’s the players who lose out - like when something like this happens.


I agree. But I would say theme would be super important in such a world, more than the other things you mentioned.


I’m not exactly sure the name of the Star Wars CCG that is OOP but has Organized Play (via their community), but I think they would be a good example for figuring out how to move forward.

As mentioned above, having a centralized team (hehe, we could call them The Board) that releases updates to MWLs (quarterly and on time!) and helps figure out how to do some sort of prize support would be helpful.

I also agree that we still have one more box to go and there’s cards that will probably really fun to explore in the next few months.

Finally, we have to keep on eye on this stuff going on with Cyberpunk 2077. GwentRunner seems to be conjecture that is floating around in everyone’s mind. That might be for another thread.