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Thought Experiment: Banning Cards


What do you think the game would be like if the following cards were banned:
Museum of History


Would the game be any better or worse off if Damon brought down the hammer (which he never will, as he is a fan of the “one type of deck can beat it” theory) ?

Would it be more fun? Less? What would the meta look like? Do you want to kill me for starting a perfectly reasonable thread? (as I am aware I shall receive angry posts and threats)



I think the competitive game right now would be better without Faust and Museum for sure.


I think either Faust OR D4v1d would be an improvement. I’m not convinced both need to go. Chronotype would be the other card I would consider. Any one of the three would probably do enough to bring Anarch in line.

Museum seems like a fine ban target. For every neat deck it enables there are two that are permitted to do nothing for two hours.

Astro I’m more conflicted about. MWLing it and SanSan seems to have done a decent job of diversifying NBN. I don’t really see it as much of an issue any more.


Banning Astro would be a mistake. NBN as a faction has been built and designed around the understanding that Astro exists and will almost certainly be played. Banning Astro would weaken the faction to the point where it would see little-to-no play.

Faust and D4, I think one or both should probably be on MWL, but a ban seems excessive.

MoH is the only card in the game (other than maybe IT Department) that I think should not have been printed. I would be fine with banning it.


Since when did you become an Astro apologist


Since Clot came out :laughing:

(I’ve never actually had an issue with Astro. It’s really strong, but it, and FA in general, are both important for the game).


MoH is in a different category from powerful cards. It is a problematic card, not a powerful one. When it gets tossed in carelessly in lists like this, I end up getting strawmanned about it more.

It needs a ban, in a different way and for a different reason, than any other card.


No reason Astro should be banned but Faust yes.


I’d almost rather see D4v1d banned than Faust. Maybe then we’d see big ice make a comeback, which would in turn make Crescentus/Shutdown better includes… I think there’d be quite a few ripple effects from banning D4v1d.

I don’t think it’s enough to put D4v1d on the MWL. It’s so good it’s still absolutely worth running 2 of in Anarch, IMO, so all putting it on the MWL would do would be to further concentrate power in the Anarch camp. It’s just too good a value proposition to be able to cancel big, single-sub ice for such a small up-front cost.

It’s possible that big ice would become too good if D4v1d were banned, but we survived up to the Lunar cycle without it, and the only big ice to come out since then are the Weyland space ice, Archangel, Little Engine, and Assassin. I think it’d lead to a resurgence of ice like Susanoo-no-Mikoto, Grim, Inazuma, and…actually that might be it. :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye: I don’t see it being catastrophic.


Fewer people would play NBN or Anarch. The game would probably be the same amount of fun.


Ban D4V1D and IT Department as a first step. If ITD exists then D4 has to exist to cap the unbounded quadratic growth of ICE strength. If that threat is gone then removing D4V1D is much safer. If runner economies are too strong for large ICE, then consider restricting them further.


Maybe David and Chronotype would be good. Because at least then Faust would have drawbacks, and not be as universal.


Random musings, but what if some cards counted as others for purposes of maximum copies allowed in a deck.

Say, D4 and Faust. So you could have three copies of D4, but no copies of Faust then. Or two of one, and one of the other.

Or Wyldside and Chronotype.


Not the worst idea. Maybe not elegant, but it’s been said many times that the Anarch tools by themselves aren’t overly powerful, but when combined they turn into quite the powerhouse. To directly address this issue, you place restrictions on the combo(s) to bring the cards in line.

Clone Chip can combo with Parasite and Lady, primarily, so CC’s restriction would be any combo of those card up to a total of 4. For reference, Signature Kate has 6…and now tough decisions have to be made, but influence is kept as originally designed.

I like the idea on the whole, but the extent to which this could be applied could be dangerous.


just some semi-related ramblings, but i think the problem lies in the initial design.

compare Wyldside to something like Hard at Work, which costs 2 more and gives credits in lieu of cards.
compare Hard at Work to Magnum Opus, and it kind of makes sense. it’s a once-per-turn, mandatory Magnum Opus that doesn’t use up MU. i can see the math on that.

ignoring similar things like Tri-Maf Contact, we can then go back to comparing Hard at Work to Wyldside. the ability to click for 2c is apparently valued higher than the ability to click for 2 cards, given that Wyldside only costs 3

i can see the logic. you don’t want to draw too much. you don’t want to have to discard. etc. etc. etc.

but 3c for the ability to draw 2 cards at the expense of a click for the rest of the game on its own is already a great deal. now you can pay 6c, another click, another card, and get 2 clickless draws for the rest of the game. i would argue that drawing is one of the most powerful actions you can do as a runner, even comparing basic actions to more complex ones, like playing powerful cards. imagine if Wyldside was 5c to install. would it be perceived as useless, balanced, etc? it’s effectively 6c now, but you don’t have to spend your click anymore. that is insane value.

it reminds me of the one-for-three cards from magic, like Lightning Bolt, where you spend 1 mana of a particular colour and get 3 of something, depending on your colour. it was determined very early on that some are way more valuable than others, and 3 life for a white mana wasn’t nearly as useful as 3 cards for a blue.

back to Netrunner, now then let’s compare Faust to Eater, probably the closest card in the design space. when Eater came out, Anarchs got a huge boost. they were Eater / Keyholing everything. can’t get into the remote? no problem: Singularity. Eater / Siphon was a big problem as well. spend all of your money defending HQ, lose all the rest of your money to Siphon, then it doesn’t matter that Eater is your only breaker. who needs Blackmail?

it was strong, but it had a definite downside, in that as soon as any ICE was rezzed, the runner needed some kind of backup breaker, or the use of Parasite / cutlery to get rid of it. being able to use replacement effects was very strong, and Eater is a pretty efficient breaker.

then, we have Faust. since its introduction, i haven’t seen a single Eater, and it’s no real surprise to me. it costs less influence, less credits to install, and if we value 1 card = 1 credit (or as we learned above, 1 card = <1c), it pumps twice as efficiently, breaks for the same, but it has no drawback whatsoever printed on the card (it has an inherent ‘drawback’ of losing cards in your hand and effective HP, also credit pools have no real cap, but handsize is effectively capped at 5 + anything else used to increase that or draw before you run). but it needs no real support other than card draw, which is already something nearly every deck wants anyway. i think that they valued Faust a little too low, considered things like max hand size, ICE like Komainu, ambushes like Snare! and Project Junebug, and kill decks in general, but many kill decks are somewhat difficult to work effectively.

imagine if Faust were printed with the same cost and influence as Eater and boosted 1 strength per discard instead of 2. would it be balanced then? would it need some other drawback as well?

i think it’s clear though that Faust as a singular card is a little imbalanced in that it completely nullified a pre-existing card and fits well into nearly any type of deck, whereas that pre-existing card, Eater, needed very specific kinds of support. Wyldside seems undercosted when compared to the mechanically similar Hard at Work.

i don’t think Adjusted Chronotype is necessarily an issue on its own. if you consider that, at base value, it’s good for getting clicks back from things like Enigma. it works with relatively underpowered cards like Hard at Work and Starlight Crusade Funding

D4v1d i think is problematic in that it breaks ICE from 5 and higher, and i think that range is actually too low. i think it should have been 6, 7, or 8 from the beginning. i get what it was trying to do. the fixed breakers for Anarch are mostly at 3 strength, so D4v1d doesn’t completely fill that gap, so there still needs to be some help, like Atman at 4, Datasucker / Parasite, The Personal Touch, etc.
i also get the 4 + 1 = 5, which is cute, but 5+ things covers so much ICE. too much imo.

i don’t know if banning is the right idea. i don’t know if it’s the wrong idea, either. and, granted, all of this analysis is with the benefit of 20/20 hindsight, plus several cycles of cards that have been released since, so i don’t know if i can really say there was any fault in the design process itself. i do like the idea and implementation of the MWL. i think that some of these problematic cards being on the list is probably going to help, and i imagine if things are as common as they are perceived, we’ll see Museum and Faust and probably Wyldside on the MWL at some point. considering that D4v1d is 4 influence for everyone but Anarch and Clone Chip is already on the MWL, i don’t see it being there.

but all of that said, i would still point out that when the MWL was first revealed, a lot of people said ‘it’s just going to be some other top tier deck that’s common’


To all intents and purposes Chronotype is a 3 cost Rachel Beckman without the tagging downside.

Its hugely undercosted when its in faction with Wyldside.
It should cost more and probably be Green.


With typical 3 Wyldside/2 Chrono setup you will draw Chrono before Wylside in 40% of your games (and I guess half of those it will be significantly earlier, so that for some time it stays in your hand as a dead card). Also Rachel enables 5-click turns, which are a bit better than 4-click turns with some bonus at the start.


I cant think of many instances where I have installed Chronotype before wyldside.


Of course you wouldn’t install it before (unless you really want to run through some Enigma multiple times). Think of instances where you drew it before Wyldside and it sat useless in your hand.


Without Faust, Anarchs will simply move towards more regular rigs and tone down a bit the cutlery in favour of a more controllish game ala Valencia.

Without D4v1D, most Anarchs would be unplayable. They cannot deal with Curtain Wall or Assassin spam without it and would simply ceased to be played competitively the moment Blue Sun or other big-ice capable deck starts doing all right.

Without Astroscript, there’s no NBN. There simply are not any agenda spreads without Astro that make sense and work, the best you can hope for are Psychographics or Scorched variants, both of which are far weaker than the average deck in other factions. If you could play “Yellowcoats” and leverage cards like Midway Station Grid in faction, this wouldn’t be an issue but you can’t.

Without Museum of History people would still be crying and complaining about non-oppresive cards instead of taking out their useless Plascretes for more appropiate meta cards so nothing would change.