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Project CROW - A crash course to introduce beginners into current decks

Hey Stimhack community,

I’ve spoken to a lot of beginners who have played the Core Experience format but are then intimidated by the jump in complexity and necessary knowledge of the card pool of Standard. The solution often presented to them is to try alternative formats like SOCR (Cache Refresh with 1 Big Box and the most recent cycle) or Modded (Core + most recent cycle). And while these can be a great step to expanding your card knowledge, it always seems to fall short in the intention of showing new players the excitement of a Standard match.

That’s why I have created a mini-campaign aimed at beginners who are familiar with the System Core 19 card pool. It starts off with a match of Reina Roja vs. NBN: Making News and progresses in 4 steps to the classic Valencia Estevez vs. NBN: Controlling the Message matchup and introduces and discusses the use of new cards step by step.
The final decks are the winning Corporation of Worlds 2018 and an adjusted version of the winning Runner deck of the Taunton Regional 2019.

You can find the decklists below. I’d kindly ask you to give feedback on how the matches felt and if there is anything that can be improved. My plan is to make more of these mini-campaigns once I’ve a good idea for the next pair of decks.


Corp 1: Hard-Hitting times
Runner 1: Getting to know the basics

Corp 2: Recursion is everything
Runner 2: I can make news as well

Corp 3: Enter the Bankers!
Runner 3: There has been a t e r r i b l e accident

Corp 4: Final stop: AMERICA CtM
Runner 4: Final stop: FREDPI-ish Val

Overview lists by @presheaf

These great lists show you what cards to put in and out for every game transition:
Corp overview, Runner overview


This is great and should be on the actual Stimhack blog! Why don’t you write it up?


I really like it and will try it out with a friend and provide feedback!

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So we played it yesterday with 3 people and it was a blast! Thanks so much @lostgeek for the idea! Not being a CtM veteran, it helped me a lot and Core NBN + HHN is really strong.

The main issue from my side when sleeving up cards, was to prepare for the next iteration. Which cards do I need? So it would be very helpful to have a list with + & - what to add and remove for the next deck evolution.

Besides that my feeling is, Scrubber can be a big deal in the matchup as well as ICE Carver. Maybe remove Scrubber? But I’m not an expert.

@presheaf has just made exactly those lists for the Project CROW decks! I’ve added them to the deck descriptions as well as the topic post here.

Corp overview, Runner overview

Regarding Scrubber: The Runner lists for game 1-3 have a bit more economy that is needed for the matchups. That is in the form of Scrubber as well as additional copies of some other econ cards (Kati Jones, Career Fair and so on). If you feel like Runner games get too easy, replace them with blank cards that represent tech cards for other matchups that are not useful in this specific match.

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I’ve just uploaded the second iteration of Project CROW! Same idea as before. We’re building up to competitive decks that have done very well at Worlds 2019. Starting with a match of Aesop’s Chaostheory against Border Control Jinteki RP, we end up at Surfing Rainbows (for value) Pelangi Hayley vs. 2 Grid for 2 Place La Costa Palana!


Corp 1: Bröther, may I have some clïcks? Runner 1: Sellin everything and the kitchen sink

Corp 2: What Costa the World? Runner 2: Install Cycy, install Pelangi, go

Corp 3: You thought this food was for you? Runner 3: Cowabunga, dude!

Corp 4: 2 Grid for 2 Place Runner 4: Surfing Rainbows (for value)

Overview lists

These list show you what cards to put in and out for every game transition: Corp overview, Runner overview.


Hey! @5N00P1, a couple new people in our meta, and I did some playing with the first iteration, and while they weren’t balanced at every level for very experienced players, they were great for new people. I’m looking forward to seeing how this iteration plays out! Thanks for the work you’re doing on this; it’s given a great starting point for several newer players. If we have any feedback in the coming weeks, I’ll let you know =)


This shit is fantastic Oguz! I’m gonna use them on my beginners! :slight_smile:


Totally agree with @Saan. Often the beginners want to move forward fast, my feeling is depending on the level of experience even 4 - 5 games are not wrong. Our players play against the different players with the same deck to see how to deal with them and who approaches the game in which way.
And of course playing both sides.