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Why is virus breeding grounds not used?

Since I see medium all over the place why is virus breeding grounds a bad idea?
Checking the math it seems great:
Run once with medium to get a counter. Get money with the other 3 clicks.
If they clear counters, then yay you got a free turn.
If they dont clear, then at your turn: click 3 times on VBG and see 5 new cards.
After a medium with 5 tokens they ARE gonna clear it, because if not you would probably win the game.
We are talking 6 cards, for the price of 2 runs spread in 2 turns. If that’s not efficient, then what is?
We are not talking about Darwin which needs the counters to run, we are using normal breakers.
VBG is not essential yes, but you only need 1 in play, 2 at the most and it improves the medium/nerve agent plays by a lot.

Why is this not seeing play?

Because you haven’t made the deck. I want to see a good deck that isn’t just virus spam noise. I thought it would be cool even to have imp with progenitor on it, just to have the ability to trash whatever card you see when you run. Maybe a deck with multithreader, cyberfeeder and regular breakers with some AI support to make occasional destructive runs a thing. It would probably be eaten alive by NEH without clot though.

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Just play quetzal Faust and add some VBG…

Card slots basically. If you could click for medium counters you’d do it, but it’s not a good enough ability compared to just being able to run rd (especially with yog/parasite to make it cheap)

Try it. And you will see that it is too slow.
Nevertheless I do enjoy playing a one-off Surge in my deck.
It’s nice with medium and parasite, and will most of the times be more usefull imo.

Because it’s not usually a good idea to fit your deck into a certain frame and give it just a certain win condition, this especially applies to the Runner’s side. A deck and it’s player should be able to adjust it’s playstyle during the course of the game. If you spend too much effort R&D locking the opponent, he can still be able to outplay you.

Virus Breeding Ground helps you a lot when you can get into R&D. It doesn’t, however, help you when you can’t. Also, it’s usually not that great to spend the whole of your turn running R&D for medium counters, multiple turns in a row, just as it is not that smart to use Melange for multiple turns in a row.

Why can’t you build around it though? Surely, having a medium with 5 counters on it against low agenda density would be super useful. Could a build be made that goes all in on r&d lock, partly using r&d interface AND medium? If you could see 8 cards on a whim during the end game, you pretty much win, no? I’m not suggesting you use the makers eye too, just something that is undoubtedly focused on r&d. It would probably need some way to not lose to NBN, but whatever, all decks do.

You seem to have misread the card. VBG adds a counter each turn and you can spend a click to move all counters off VBG to another card. In your example, clicking VBG would only add a single additional counter to the medium. You could do that each turn, but again, slow.

I assume it’s for whatever reason hivemind isn’t seeing play. My guess, lower prevalence of fast advance (no chakana decks needed) and a move away from single, power runs (i.e. 12 deep medium digs) all enabled by the hivemind progenitor-breeding-grouds combo.

Hivemind doesn’t see play because generally it is a “conditional combo”, meaning the card is of suspicious value unless you have a certain card (Progenitor) and worthless if you don’t have other cards (viruses) installed. The best cards are valuable on their own and get better when used in conjunction with other powerful effects. Datasucker is valuable for reducing strength and “paying you back” for central runs. Desperado is a straight discount/profit on all runs. Security testing lets you turn a click in to two credits on an empty server. Any of these effects are good on their own, but together you get the nightmare Archives run of Andysucker yore, spending single clicks for 3 really good effects.

I definitely agree, however conditional as it is it’s not a combo I would underate, if only because of the huge upside in the right metagame. I brought it up as I can’t really see another deck where I would want to use breeding grounds.

That’s the one place I used it, a janky chakana lock deck with hivemind. The only other place that comes to mind would be a Valencia blackmail dig deck that lets VBG tick over multiple turns waiting for a big ass blackmail run. Could be fun, but could get wrecked by the wrong matchup.

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You mean those two decks weren’t the same? They sure were for me :slight_smile:

Curse Caprice! (and to a lesser extent butchershop)

No, you’re misreading the card. You only transfer one virus per click with VBG. Incubator is the one that works more like what you’re saying.


Good catch. Still only ticks up a counter at a time, but yes, I was thinking of incubator.

One of the top decks on nrdb uses it. http://netrunnerdb.com/en/decklist/14677/can-o-whupass

In Noise I think it definitely is a space issue, not a bad card thing.

You’re talking about Incubator, not VGB.

I’m not playing VBG myself because it’s usually better to just run R&D and get the counters that way. Sure, I can see the benefit if R&D is expensive, but depending on your deck you can quite often play around it so that R&D is, in fact, cheap to get into (BP, Blackmail, Desperado, Vamp, Parasite…).

I just htink it’s one of those cards that are good but end up being cut because they don’t do enough for their slot. I think it can see play on dedicated decks, but right now it’s just a “nice have”.