TL;DR: 8 point agenda self protecting agenda suites are broken.
Morning folks, today I have been examining Agenda composition in Palana, specifically the split between TTTG 2222 & TGGG 2222 where T =The Future Perfect and G = Global Food.
I did the usual construct of assuming X accesses out of a 49 card deck (so assuming all accesses are equivalent to random pokes on a full rnd – in reality HQ/remote accesses are more highly valued). Using this we know that the traditional 2222 2222 211 suite needs 17 accesses to generate a 50% chance of getting to 7 points. The renowned Foodcoats suite of GG 222 2222 requires 22 accesses on average to get to 8 points (17 accesses to get 6pts and then play notoriety).
Adding TFP perfect into the mix does two things. Firstly the chances of stealing it under normal circumstance is reduced to 1/3 – the chance of winnng the psi game. Secondly however, there is a drawback, namely if the runner can steal it, they only need 3 agendas to win. With this in mind I analysed the results assuming various psi success probabilities simulating various in game scenarios (e.g. psi = 1 if runner has a film critic). Given that in the TGGG case its far more likely the runner will need 8 points to win, I skewed the results to look for the expected number of accesses = 7.75pts to represent this whilst in the TTTG case I looked for 7.25pts.
Description | P(Psi)= | TTTG | TGGG
Yomi master | 0 | 40 | 28
Expectation | 0.33 | 27 | 26
I never bet 2 | 0.5 | 24 | 25
I suck at psi | 0.67 | 22| 24
Film critic | 1 | 19 | 23
The results are not unexpected, TFP protects itself and its expected points you get on access is 1 (3 * 1/3) vs GFIs 2, so in the base/expected case, TTTG is the optimal suite. However, it also comes with significantly higher variance. If the runner does manage to nab one (or has film critic) then their chances of winning increase dramatically. TGGG is the lower variance option, and is quite stable requiring somewhere around 23-26 accesses for the runner to win vs 19-27 for the TTTG version.
However there are some other considerations
1) Influence – the additional influence buys an Eli over say, an enigma, which is decreasing the probability of access in the first place.
2) Silver bullets –
a. if the runner is packing notoriety then they can get away with scoring 3 agendas in either case.
b. If the runner is running film critic you probably want TGGG.
3) HQ/archives accesses – here TTTG is stronger
4) Remote accesses – in the event you lose the caprice games, its better to give away 2pts than 3, so TGGG
5) Mental stress – playing multiple psi over a tournament can be very stressful and lead to tilt.
6) Turntable - if the runner steals a TFP and wants to turntable it for a Nisei counter, you are pretty happy about that trade, at least more happy then them swapping a GFI.
Both are great to be honest – the runner needing 25 or so random accesses on average vs glacier and remote they have to win multiple psi to get into is just stupid.
What do people prefer, better expectation (and better ice), or lower variance?