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Where is the MWL? - As of August 20th, 2018 - MWL 2.2 is here (effective 2018.09.06)


I was surprised by Mother Goddess. I always thought it a good card but have just never run into the kind of degen decks Boggs cited as problematic.

Rumor Mill doesn’t strike me as as anything particularly special at the moment. Since it’s a current, it doesn’t even totally counter cards in a lot of cases so much as it really just delaying them or forces you to play your current. Compared to Film Critic, which can be a lot longer-lasting and harder to deal with.

RIP Leela/Gang Signs/Tapwrm. I know that everyone hated that deck anyway but it was very special to me, personally.

It’s interesting that the more cards that get restricted, the more it feels like cards get effectively ban. Which I think is a very good thing.

Wouldn’t have minded seeing a couple more cards make the list but it’s hard to complain about. Would have liked to see Museum of History hit the ban list on the grounds that it’s just very unfun and frequently just slows the game down. Can’t imagine anyone complaining about seeing that one disappear forever.


Agree 100% with this reasoning. Good Stuff Anarchs tend to be well equipt to deal with most of the RM targets just by stimhacking into the remote. The only consideration that would change this is if we get some kind of Caprice-level defensive upgrade in Kitara that would justify slotting a hard counter.

Interesting aside, it seems like just recently the use of Stimhack has a “server scrubber” has become more prominent. Maybe because Whizzard was around for so long, there wasn’t a need another option, but the old adage of “Stimhack wins games” seems to have shifted to “Stimhack wipes out servers.”

Perhaps just a shift in the game’s hivemind of how to use/value certain cards. Kinda neat.


Gotta get on that Singularity tech. Now that scrubs a server.


Vs CTM it lets you host a GFI so it isn’t exchangeable.


I think Rumor Mill has more effect on the Skorpios matchup than people are giving it credit.

Hunter Seeker is often relevant only about twice per game. The Skorpios player needs to have it in hand—opponents take this as a given, but it’s not—and the runner needs to have a breaker on the table that’s worth sniping. In the early game, hitting that breaker buys the Skorpios player time to rush ahead and, ideally, generate Atlas tokens to respond dynamically to the runner. By the late game, hitting one breaker out of a full rig has less value. Runners will have multiple vectors of attack by this point and the Skorpios player’s (largely) flimsy ice will be rezzed and spread too thinly. If you add in additional threats such as Maw, bypass effects, or simply a couple of Fisk Investment Seminars, Skorpios can become fragile. There are many ways a runner can close the game without one or even two breakers.

The biggest threat Skorpios poses is not Hunter Seeker, it’s Marcus Batty into Archer or Tithonium in the midgame. Scooping a full rig into the toilet gives the Skorpios player the advantage to Fast Track or get those Atlas tokens and close the game within two or three turns.

Rumor Mill returning to the fold will have a measurable impact across Skorpios winrates.

Source: approximately 75 games of Skorpios since January 8th, including two SCs.


Playing Anarch with conspiracy rig, Employee Strike allready “kills” it better than Rumor’s Mill (trash programs, they will come back). In other factions, Mill cost lots of inf.

I don’t think it will be harder than these matchups.

I’m playing MaxX against Skorpio with conspiracy Strike, this win me some matches (instead of being steamrolled with a regular Levy MaxX). I don’t say I win more than 50% there, but I win some.


Nothing makes me happier than Anarchs playing Employee Strike and thinking they can safely Inject.

I added a Preemptive so I can shuffle my Ark Lockdown back in and tutor for it with an Atlas token. I wasn’t sure Preemptive would pull its weight but it did.

Trust me, your breakers aren’t safe in the bin, they just aren’t.


That’s why you install them by hitting ICE.


Sure, most Anarch can have troubles against it, or against Chronos.

I’m not “most Anarchs”.

You may want to wait for my 71 cards to be in the bin before you Chronos / Ark with certitude, I’ll be allready in the first opened of your servers, toying with Baghat and / or Maw. 12 of my cards are breakers. You need to be perfectly secure everywhere before that, or I would be Mawing this out of your hand.
If by any chance I’m not set - this happens - then this case is just “win-more”. I already greiving and trying impossible moves (that works more than you think : being called a “lucky guy” happens maybe 30% of my win : then I found a way to have a piece of “insolent luck”. Which is fine, because “insolent luck” beat better players than me.).

Chronos / Ark is not the best card you can have in hand against a dilluted conspi runner with Maxx draw engine. Snare is the one.

80% of my games are violent toward one of the players, and the goal is to direct the violence to them instead of me. That deck is like that.

I don’t really see why you may think Injects is safe with Levy. Levy’s tempo with Conspi / Injects is even worse :sunglasses:

I’m just pragmatic : Completed: 125 - Won: 68 (55%) - Lost: 55. I’ve got another 100 with a weaker list. It’s a fine runner. Not a super strong one, just a fine one. Experience is one of the keys.

Locked like that happens, but not as many times as the corp would want : I made more runner rqing when FAing Chronos against regular runners than them against my deck :stuck_out_tongue:

And if this happens, then I’ll headplant in something à la “be rich or die trying” and take a chance : this is MaxX fluff :slight_smile:


I think your point about Skorpios & Hunter Seekr is great but it responds to one list item of one half of @jdc_wolfpack’s post. Right now, it really looks like Rumor Mill is a lesser option in comparison with Film Critic and Employee Strike. All three cut across different segments of corp archetypes & hose them pretty hard, but FC’s impact looks broader. Those 75 Skorp games can’t really inform how much you’re going to see Rumor Mill in the wild once the new MWL is active.


Obviously the issue with unbanning Rumor Mill isn’t whether it hits Skorp… It’s that instead of dealing directly with overpowered or stupid cards like Bryan Stinson and MCAAP, they’re putting another stupid card into the wild that hits defensive upgrades, arguably an honest and fair strategy that needs some TLC even without RM in the pool.

Maybe I’m romanticizing glacier, and I agree with the general consensus that RM is an unlikely restricted choice so whatever glacier options exist will likely remain unaffected, but it feels like RM was chosen over restricting or banning various corp cards simply to keep the lists shorter. I’d prefer the hammer fall faster and harder on more targets to balance the game, rather than playing within a rock paper scissors circle of silver bulletry.


But why should RM remain banned if it’s an unlikely restricted choice? Even if they did ban Stinson in the past, or they do in the future, it doesn’t change RM’s fate.

Given that, it’s worth seeing if RM can change Stinson’s fate. It might be that they still end up having to ban or restrict him but they don’t want to pull the trigger too early. Especially since they also recently banned VLC.

I’m a fan of Ash 2X too, but if a runner wants to tech against him there were already playable options. You just have to take the chance that they don’t want to.


Having been through (like many of the OldRunners on here) the Rumor Mill days when it was blanking Caprice, Batty, Jackson and all the Super Friends, I was so happy to see it go.

However, in this NuRunner Era (In Year 1 of Our Boggs), given the choice between Cat or Critic, I’ll probably be slotting critic 8 out of 10 times.

For the most fun for your buck, it’s when you slam Interdiction down on the table and then stimhack into that sever that has an Ash and a Batty in it. :slight_smile:

As for Employee Strike, none of my runners have enough gainful employment to influence the job market anyway.


This may be what players of other card games are most accustomed too, but it’s worth considering the circumstances. FFG is very reluctant to ban cards. We played under MWL for almost 2 years before a single card saw a ban and that was with even more egregious cards like Blackmail, Sifr, Astro, and Breaking News. It’s likely FFG still isn’t fully on board and doesn’t want a huge ban list. Re-introducing RM is the most likely way they can get ahead of potential issues within FFG’s ideology. That said, it’s also likely the right call. If MCAAP, Stinson, and Batty are the targets they are admittedly strong cards, but they’re not so overpowered as to warp a meta like we saw with GFI, Sifr, and Breaking News.


I think about this sort of thing a lot. If a card can wreck certain matchups, is it enough to make it a bad meta choice? My gut says no, ban it, but I don’t know whether this is an unrealistic (and/or design-stifling) expectation, and it also takes us back to the fundamental questions of what purpose the MWL is supposed to serve. Has it done its job if lots of different archetypes are represented in high-level play, or do we expect more than a Nash equilibrium of bad rock-paper-scissors games? I don’t want to be like “all decks and all matchups must be equally fun, and the following items are Not Fun:…” and yet there’s often a surprising consensus on such matters.
I’m not going anywhere with this; I’ve been drinking.


Yeah there’s not a clear distinction between acting on fun and acting on power. In Hearthstone they won’t print any cards that destroy the opponent’s mana crystals, but in Magic they still do print land destruction but just at a low power level - low enough that even casual players aren’t drawn to it, and that even if they are, their opponents will beat them enough to not mind having to play against it. And on the other end of the spectrum, when deciding to ban in tournaments they will sometimes decide to leave something in if its fun even if it hurts format diversity, or take something out if it’s unfun. But more often, format diversity is the sole deciding factor for bannings.

Is rumor mill unfun? One insight from Magic is that a lot of things people find unfun effectively “blank the text on their cards” by winning too fast, stopping them from casting their spells, or countering or killing everything they cast. Rumor Mill literally blanks the text on cards so you can see the problem there. But it only hits a subset, it’s not like Vamp or Blackmail that stops 90% of what the corp could do. It’s more like Yog that blanks some code gates, but even fairer than Yog because it’s a current and can therefore be removed easier.


Well, back when RM was released it saw hardly any play at all and glacier decks still disappeared! Ironically, it saw more play after it got put on the MWL tier 3, and that was purely to counter Estelle.
Having said that, I think the current format makes a big difference, and its unbanning won’t be nearly as impactful. Since it’s restricted, having it means no e-strike, no critic. So if you’re, say, AgInfusion, you know that even if your Batties are blanked your ID ability and your Obocatas aren’t.


Good question. If the Nash equilibrium is a 2-deck environment (CTM vs Whiz comes to mind), then I don’t mind high-power hate as much. The match is still competitive. If the Nash equilibrium is Rochambeau then high power cards can ruin the competitiveness of matches, even if the expected win rate is the same. I think competitiveness (i.e., beginning more matches at near even odds) is a reasonable metric to advance. This said, I’m not always confident that the Nash equilibrium is reflected in meta for the given cardpool.

My gut seems to agree with your gut that the game may be better without RM. While competitiveness can sometimes be achieved with such OP cards in the pool, it’s probably easier to achieve competitiveness more reliably without them. Then it doesn’t matter whether the topology of the Nash Equilibrium is steep vs flat, or whether the dominant meta archtypes even reflect the optimals for the cardpool at all.

Still it’s generally more desirable to unban a single card instead of restricting multiple new cards. This is why we have a Boggs.


If I can add an addition 2 cents as a player who entered the game recently enough that RM is essentially a new card to me;

As some seem to be implying, it might be possible that RM was a game ruining card at a certain time and that makes people from that time nervous but in the current meta, it really looks like nothing more than an interesting alternative possibility to 3 other popular cards that are about as good.


When Rumor Mill was released, it saw a lot of play, in a great many decks, and continued to be played until it was banned.

At a minimum, Jackson Howard was legal for all of this period, was a 3x auto-include in every corp deck, and was one of the most important cards in the game. Blanking Jackson provided a high floor for RM, and there were still Jeeves, Sandburg, Chairman Hiro, Genetics Pavilion, Moon, and Stinson all getting blanked before we even mention Ash and Caprice.

Rumor Mill hit important cards in every major archetype, and most decks were effected beyond Jackson Howard. RM was a major difference maker from the day it was printed until the day it was finally banned. Every day in between it saw a lot of play.