The jank that never worked

Hey everyone,
What is a jank card that you tried really hard to use but never got working? Share your story of woe.


I played a lot of IG before Bioethics came along, and I was always trying to get Allele Repression to do something. My deck had Mushins, Junebugs, and Snares so at least on paper it made sense: Mushin out Allele Repression, use it’s trash ability to repopulate Archives with facedowns while filling up HQ with traps and Mushins and even recurring the Allele Repression to do it all over again. This was also before Museum of History and Friends in High Places, so recursion was pretty much limited to Jackson, Archived Memories, and Interns.

It turns out, it didn’t end up being very effective because it seemed like too many moving parts, too many wasted clicks on Mushin for a relatively low payout, and Allele costing 2 credits to rez was actually a deal breaker.

I still think Allele Repression is a really cool card, with an effect that screams Jinteki, but it just wouldn’t do what I wanted it to, even in what seemed like an ideal situation.


I love Chief Slee. I’ve tried every sort of deck composition to try and get her to fire (let alone trying to get her to fire and have a way on your turn to kill them). I’ve only ever gotten it to happen out of Blue Sun once with Inazuma and Hive in there for added measure. It didn’t hurt that the player was reckless and would’ve been dead turn 3 to any decent Midseasons kill deck.

But she fired. Twice. On one turn. Worth every heartbreak.


From my experiments, Allele worked (sort of) with triple Subliminals messaging and Slee worked (sort of) within RP.

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@hhooo and I tried MANY times to make Akitaro Watanabe and Amazon Industrial Zone to work. Apart, and together. It never happened, the decks were always better when we cut them.


That does look like it should be a great card. Now I want to try that!

The double Slee. The white whale of janklords!

That’s the trick, right, keeping them from running on Slee after they charge her up?

I hadn’t thought of combining it with Subliminal Messaging, that’s some cool synergy.

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I starting building it when it was spoiled, super excited by the possibilities. I tried to make it work for months, going to meetups and a couple tournaments with better and better versions, but the tempo hit of having to both draw and reinstall a program every time it’s used eventually leaves scoring windows open, even if you get to break stuff for super cheap. It also takes too long to set up. It won games, usually by locking the remote, just fewer games than a good deck would.


I totally agree with Allele Repression. Tried to make it work but only learned the card is terrible on practically every level.

Fundamentally the card is on shaky ground because it is pure click disadvantage. You are spending one card to switch other cards so you end up with one less card than you started. You have to install it, so you end up with one less click than you started with. And you have to advance it, which is both clicks in money and clicks in the actual action. Even if it costed 0 instead of the 2, it would be such a massive investment that no card would be worth recurring.

Second, you have to discard cards to recover other cards. So you need to have a ton of cards in your hand that you don’t want. And, as Corp, you do want all your cards. You don’t want to throw Agendas, or ICE to get back a Hedge Fund even if it were free to do so. They serve different functions and if you regularly find yourself throwing one to get another, why don’t just just switch the slots? If your deck is properly built you don’t need this kind of switch.

I’m going to say Iain Stirling.

This one is not really right fair because Stirling has worked for me at several points in the game. He has a surprisingly strong ability and synergizes with a broad range of strategies. In the right metagame, he served me well.

But he’s not well designed. Like every other 10 influence cards, the influence numbers just don’t add up. Most of the time you tried to build a deck and you ended up with 11 or 12 influence, no matter how you tried. The vast majority of Stirling decks I tried to build ended up not being playable because in order to get to 10 influence I would need to cut key cards.

In fact, now that I think of it, the only times I was happy with him were times I could run 1 Corroder, 2 Medium and have two influence to spare. Any time I had to spend any more influence, it was infuriating.

The other problem is that there’s no card pool for him. When Tri-Maf and Mr Li were decent you kind of had a deck. Perhaps not a good one, but hey, it worked. Now he has nothing going for him because the Criminal card pool does not allow it and Medium is out of the game.

Some more stuff:

The Foundry: Drawing ICE makes R&D agenda density untenable without Museum of History. And with it, you are just drawing a lot of cards that do not allow you to pusht he game foward, only to hold it. Design-wise, it’s not there.

Rook: This is a powerful card, but much more expensive than it seems at first glance. One click to play, another to move, 2c to install and 1 MU all add up. It could have been good if the rest of the Caissa suite were, but they are all pretty poor (Pawn) or non-synergetic (Bishop).

Janus 1.0: Seems much cooler than it is in practice. The issue is that you can click it and only take 1 Brain damage, without ETR. Hence you need at least two to protect a server and they can click through one and break the other. Needs a buff.

Dedicated Response Team: This is a fantastic card with Data Raven and Snare, but you can only play 3 Data Ravens. Worse, this is a 3inf Weyland card and both DR and Snare are out of faction.

Weyland: Builder of Nations: 1 damage per turn is simply not enough to matter and it’s very, very hard to get that much damage. Jinteki PE does the same amount of damage, with no influence hit and without setup.

The nature of drip damage is also at odds with the Runner running a lot.


I once got Director Haas, Victoria Jenkins and The Board rezzed on a Worlds Plaza. Blew it up with a Self Destruct when the runner ran it. Then I never played any of those crap cards again.

(Took me like 30 games to pull it off once.)


It worked wonderfully in Blue Sun kill decks. Nobody wants to play ‘find the Janus!’.


Paintbrush. There’s an enamored review for Paintbrush on NRDB written by a younger me. I had hopes.


I’ve always been a crim jankster at heart. So it was love at first sight with her. And she coulda been good if she wasn’t soooo underpowered.

Why does a Savvy Skiptracer have zero link?
Why does she only have 12 influence?
Why can she only install Breakers after passing ICE?
Why does the install only happen after the first ICE?

Here’s my theory. She originally had none of the above restrictions. In testing she was way too powerful, but they ran out of time to get her right. Khan should have been the Crim Hayley. Because her ability is so late game, she was basically only playable as Andy Rebirth. So that nullified her deck limit benefit. Somwhere in an alternate universe she has a link, 15 inf, and “once per turn when she passes an ICE, she may install a card from her hand grip.”


You also needed some kind of enabling victory card to recur for this to work. That was cute with ToL & Biotics. But anything out of Jinteki worked a lot better.

Brahman was good in Shaper Apocalypse decks, where getting your breakers out of the table before landing Apoc was helping you recover faster than the corp.

Interesting, I never tried that!

I’ve had success with Brahman not using it as the main breaker, but to bounce things that are limited use and you would otherwise Scavenge: Lady, D4v1d, CyCy. Getting to break str 3 or lower multisub ice for cheap is just a bonus. It’s a really funky breaker suite and a blast to play. Plus your breakers are actually efficient, so you can threaten early scores to some extent.

Also synergizes with London Library. Kind of. You can spend the click to recover your program on your next turn (and maybe net a credit with Proco).

I tried so hard to make Khan work when she first came out. It was always just an okay deck and never had major teeth. The only way I got her to work at any level was to import a bunch of link cards and the cloud breakers to make surprisingly efficient runs.

There’s more high utility link in crim now, but I don’t think I’ll be going back to revise it. Like you pointed out, she just had too many restrictions.

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