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Runner side slump


#1

What do you do if you feel that one side of your game is holding you back?

It’s not even really a feeling at this point - so far this season I’m 13-2 on Corp side but 7-8 as Runner (and really the Runner stats should be worse, as one win was purely because of a mutual rules misunderstanding and at least two more were on an absolute knife edge and one turn away from a loss).

I’ve stuck with NEH FA on one side but have been flitting between Runner decks in an attempt to get those numbers up. Clearly the lack of experience with each deck hasn’t helped, but going 1-4 with a Noise deck that was almost identical to the ones that were winning the same tournament means that it’s probably my play that’s at fault more than anything.

So, as a general point, how do you address having your play on one side being much weaker than the other?


#2

Practice

Grab a Dumblefork list and play it wherever you can, even against randoms on jinteki.net


#3

Back a good horse. I’ve been playing Noise since core set. Not sure I’ve ever played a tourney without him. He sucked at first, now he’s like a bottle of whiskey with a good friend. Super smooth and comfortable.


#4

It is practice which determines your efficacy with a deck/side. Im not too dissimilar to you - I play 90% of my online games as corp (I just prefer it) and my Corp win rate this SC season is 70% (I head faust was causing some problems for others?) and just 45% as runner. I came to this conclusion a few weeks ago and have been trying to rectify it.


#5

Oh, you want to win with Noise? Me too! I had some very good luck early in this SC season, but I’ve hit a slump lately. I’ve been studying my earlier games to see what changed that’s holding me back.

I’ve had some success with it this SC season, much more so than my NEH corp side. BTW, on the note of NEH, in my last SC I lost 4 games as NEH, and 3 of those I was literally a single turn away from winning, but the runner accesses a single new card from R&D (and once a 1/5 HQ) to steal the game winning agenda, so I feel like winning on the ‘knife’d edge’ as you say, is still a very real victory, since my margins are often quite close from the corp side.

So, back to Noise! One thing that I like that no other Noise decks seem to do is play Hades Shard from hand. There is no window for the corp to Jackson in this scenario, which is important to know since many players either don’t know or ‘forget’ this when the play comes up. I normally hold this to close out the game or avoid going to time, it’s kind of a crutch that I don’t always need, but I know that it won several games thatI should have lost because of this play.

A second thing I noticed about my play is that I tend to focus on R&D and the scoring remote far more than HQ. In my best games, I hit HQ a lot. I use Imp as a crude barometer for HQ accesses; whenever I have an Imp installed, I should run HQ and trash things out of HQ. Some matches require you trash specific cards out of HQ, so keep an eye out for those. Asset-spam matches usually require the Imp trash remotes, so my HQ pressure will suffer. Just remember, as the corp, if the runenr never runs your HQ, you’ll not dedicate much ICE to it, and hold your agendas safely where the runner isn’t looking.

A third point that has hurt me the most is focusing on setting up. Noise is not a shaper, he should not be worried about setting up. You can win games as Noise with very few cards installed because you can pressure any server in ways that make the corp very uncomfortable. Lamprey and Medium are a great turn 1 combo. With the obvious threat to R&D in Medium, run HQ to force an ICE rez to open up R&D. If the corp won’t rez, hit HQ until the corp is on ~2c and switch to R&D. There are many small combos that Noise can make to pressure the corp everywhere and pick them apart, recognize and use these without mercy. The most important thing is to play with the cards in your hand. Don’t focus on next turn or 2 turns from now, what are you doing this turn, with the cards in your hand now? If you aren’t about to use the cards you are holding, they’ve just become Faust food, make a run.

I guess a last point I’ll add is Run Amok is a good card for hitting remotes when you primarily pressure centrals. Early on the corp will be very reluctant to rez any ICE when you can break any (or almost any) ICE they rez, and 100% will jack out and run again if they rez something that can actually stop you. It works on any server, but I often neglect the remote enough that all of the ICE is face-down, making Run Amok a 1-click 3-credit Quest Complete.

My final point (I promise) is: If you are very comfortable on the corp side, put yourself in your opponents shoes. What would you do in this situation? what are you hoping the runner won’t do? What card did he probably install last turn? Did NEH just toss a turn-1 Astro on the board thinking I’d set up instead of checking it? That’s a ballsy move, I like it, but not enough to give him an Astro token. Strong corp instincts can direct your runner play and force the corp onto the back foot. The more you can make the corp react to what you are doing instead of advancing their own board state, the stronger your position. Remember, as Noise you are always pressuring the corp to win quickly because of all the milling you keep doing; a slow standoff is a victory for Noise, and you can fall back onto Hades Shard for those last 3 or 4 points…


#6

That’s the opposite of what will get the numbers up. Play one deck that you know is solid, and play only it until you understand what it does and how to play it.


#7

Bringo. I was in a runner slump and I kept jumping around thinking I’d just find a magic solution. Eventually I opted to play nothing but a basic money/breakers deck for weeks straight. Now I win runner games again.

It’s not a sexy word, but consistency is key. You get consistent by knowing every single thing there is to know about your deck. Every possible line of play, what you can afford to lose in a face check, how low you can go on resources without crippling yourself, etc. Take a proven netdeck that you like the look of and play it to death.


#8

That’s been my mentality day one here. Treat decks like a new hero and just play to learn it. But I really haven’t been pulling a lot of luck in general. Like how do you beat CI?


#9

Similar to what everyone else has been saying, but when I find myself having Runner troubles, I just fall back on NoiseShop. Sometimes it takes a bit, but playing something really familiar over and over again eventually gets me out of that slump.

I’ve found myself in a bit of a slump with Corps lately, mostly because I’m dicking around a bit too much. Might have to go back to either RP or NEH FA, just to get that confidence up so that I can mess around some more.


#10

[quote=“warpchy, post:8, topic:7067”]I really haven’t been pulling a lot of luck in general
[/quote]
Like me last year, until I realised I could not see luck when it was on my side and adjust some too oldschool variables in my builds :slight_smile:

Meta is still faster than me (or I’m too fast for it, who knows).


#11

Two things.

One, which has been stated over and over by others in this thread is practice, practice, practice.

Two, recognize that your number of games isn’t statistically significant. This is akin to what is frequently said about the best players of any game having a very short memory for failures. You can’t let your recent struggles color your coming games and play. This isn’t to say that you shouldn’t look at your past play and try to identify and correct poor decisions and/or behaviors, but do so with an understanding that the next game is a new clean slate where you start over from scratch to perform your best.

Good luck.


#12

Build up a massive turn for Legworking, CBI, pack clot/siphon. CI hasn’t changed at all in the last year, really, it just can run six agendas for lower density.


#13

If CI is a real concern in your meta CBI raid is the hardest counter yet. Siphon’s good too. Set up Legworks. Play blue, basically.


#14

How badly does CBI affect CI? I feel like you’re also letting them set up the perfect Accelerated Diagnostic combo without the need for Power Shutdown, but I haven’t thought it through very deeply.


#15

If you’re really looking for counters to 7-point CI, Archives Interface is an entertaining place to start.


#16

Archives Interface isn’t bad in the meta filled with museums, especially if your getting Desperado creds or viruses on Sucker.


#17

Clot + 3 SacCons. Watch them weep as they try to math out how to CVS 4 times and still combo. Bonus in that SacCon’s not a bad card in other matchups, especially with Hayley Aesops decks.


#18

I will add another echo to the crowd vouching for commitment. I’ll use myself as an example. I’ve been playing Whizzard decks almost exclusively for the past 2 years. Despite the archetypes I’ve moved through, the list has never varied more than 50% across those 2 years. I consider myself a pretty reasonable Anarch Junk player (see: RegAss) but it didn’t come overnight. Any time I try to play Noise I feel like I am playing so poorly, whereas I can pick up any Anarch Junk list and be incredibly comfortable. The difference is practice.

Be warned: there is a dark side to commitment. I’ve been playing Whizzard for so long that I may be too tied to his recurring credits. It’s much harder for me to know when the optimal times to trash things are when I play other Anarch IDs. I am really not looking forward to his rotation. Moreover, any time I venture outside of Anarch my play suffers. I have somewhere close to a thousand games of Netrunner in at this point, and I would say at least 70% of my Runner side has been Anarch. When you commit to an ID/faction your play with them will drastically improve but your playstyle may be warped if you’re not careful.

Last note: even the ‘good decks’ require a lot of practice. Don’t fall prey to the idea that you can win lots of games with Mean MaXx, Kwik-e-Shop, or Faust Noise right out of the gates. These decks still require practice.


#19

Incidentally, it is great for getting that CVS out of there so you can start building those sucker tokens too!

I really like AI as a concept, but never had the balls to cut something for it.


#20

Thanks for the helpful and insightful advice. Lots of food for thought here.

I think my problem here, as pointed out, is that I’ve been chasing the meta rather than playing something I’m comfortable with. I’ve never been a particularly good Anarch player, and yet that’s what I’ve mostly been focusing on due to the power level of their card pool right now. That’s a mistake; I’m never going to be able to take advantage of that power level if I’m simply not comfortable playing the decks and cannot identify the strong lines of play that those cards open up.

I’m sticking with Shaper for a while. Regardless of the position in the meta, I’ve always been most comfortable with Runner decks that i) have a more-or-less linear plan, and ii) can treat any given board state as a solvable puzzle. With that in mind, I’ll be taking a tweaked Pitchfork Hayley build to the Store Championship this weekend, and have been getting (limited, unfortunately) practice games in this week. It’s essentially the same Resource and Hardware (and, broadly, economy) package I’ve been playing with since before the last SC, and I’m fine with the different program suite. I’m back on comfortable ground and have been winning games on jinteki.net, for all that matters.

Let’s see how it goes!