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Android: Netrunner» Forums » Strategy

Subject: Analysis of Sentry ICE vs ICEBREAKERS Commentary 2/9/14 rss

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John Smith
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I have placed this as a downloadable excel file below. It will soon be followed with barrier ice and code gate ice analysis.

This is an open forum for discussion. Which is the best icebreaker and which is the best sentry ice to install.

By the averages, you can tell that the lowest sentry icebreaker is Faerie, even lower than an Atman at the assumed correct strength. The only consideration is that Faeire must be destroyed afterwards even though there are ways to ge around this like Sacrificial Construct. However, at a FC of 3 is Faerie worth splashing?

Everyone talks about how great Femme Fatale is and I agree that her second ability is amazing, even though (and I might be wrong please help!) I have heard that using her to bypass an ICE doesn't set off the Oversight AI's rules for breaking all subroutines. However, if you attach her to a Personal Workshop and use Stimhack to pay for the install cost. Is this correct? Otherwise it seems that she is an overpriced Sentry buster and I would rather use Crypsis. She is at 5.4 while Garrote is almost two below at 3.64 (although not splashable and high in MU). What do you think?

Ninja vs Garrote: which do you choose?

Everybody knows that pipeline sucks at it shows with the highest average cost of 6.84. Anarchy only has one sentry breaker that has gotten progressively worse as the game continues: Mimic. Not being able to break 12 of 25 sentry ice makes it seem unplayable. Do you agree?

Shapers best Sentry Icebreaker is Creeper. Still, at an average cost of 5.64. It is still more costly then Crypsis at 5.24, although Crypsis needs the virus counter.

What do you think is the best ICE to play?
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Nushura
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You cannot compare credit costs so easily. With Barriers and Code gates there exist quite simple breakers (say, corroder and gordian blade). They have a low to average strength, but cost 1$ to pump and 1$ to break subroutines.

However, FFG decided not to make a similar option available for sentries. This is a great idea, since there will not be one clear "best" sentry breaker (of course, the choice of which Barrier/Code Gate breaker is not straightforward either, but at least there is a recommended program to use).

Let's look at several examples of sentry breakers:

-Faerie is very cheap, all that we would dream for...but can only be used once.

-Pipeline as you said is very expensive, but when you have 2/3 sentries together it is the best one

-Crypsis is quite cheap...but you have to spend extra clicks adding counters.

-Dagger is great (with 1$ you add 5 strength!), but you need to have cloak installed or it will suck. Also, you start having memory issues when you want to break through archer.

-Femme Fatale is expensive, but it can be used to ignore any single piece of ice. Even non sentries. And yes, it can be installed from a personal workshop with a stimhack. And yes, since you bypass an ICE you do not break the subroutines, which means that Oversight AI is unaffected. It is way worse (for the runner) when combined with Chum, though.

-Mimic is wonderful, but needs to be combined with Datasucker for heavy ICE (which adds an extra memory requirement, and the need to fetch that card)

-Garrote is the closet thing to a Corroder/Gordian blade. However it costs a LOT (more than Mimic + Datasucker) and uses 2 memory slots.

So the answer to both of your questions is "it depends". Do you have ways to pay for expensive breakers for cheap? Then Garrote/Femme could be nice options. You have kate that gives several discounts? Maybe Mimic/Datasucker is better. Do you plan to destroy ice with parasites? Then you do not regularly need a sentry breaker, so a Faerie could be good, etc...

For the corp you have the same questions. In what way do you want to punish the runner? Brain damage so as to flatline him? Make him spend a lot of money? Make him lose clicks? Break his programs so that he cannot go through? etc etc etc

Choices choices choices make this game a wonderful one
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Sam Suied
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femme in any datasucker rig is probably the most effective, especially since a good chunk of the sentries you can expect to run into are low strength, and I'd rather not pay to break an archer with any sentry breaker unless I really have to anyway. use faerie or sharpshooter for those things
 
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Sean Trundle
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I think you'll want to check out http://www.sneakdoor.com/ before you invest a lot more time in this project. =)
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Sean Trundle
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Sorry for the double post, but wanted to add --

Regarding your comments about Mimic, I think you're missing something key here. There are not a lot of good mid-range sentries. This has been changing slowly (e.g. with the introduction of Grim), but for the most part, they still come in 2 flavors: stuff Mimic can handle, and stuff you need a non-breaker solution for anyway.

Having a Ninja or Garotte on the table with a pile of cash is a great insurance policy against a surprise Archer/Janus/Flare, but making multiple runs against those ice is really not feasible with *any* killer in most realistic situations. You're going to have to find an alternate route to deal with those things in the long-run anyway (e.g. Parasite, Femme, etc.).
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John Smith
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haha... thanks for that Sean! Didn't know that existed... but I had fun creating the excel files anyway. I love the site but I am happy to provide a downloadable printable version which will be easier for me to scan when I am making decks then going to the computer. Still... It is nice to have the images and the colors and I will be copying that
 
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John Smith
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I might be missing something and thank you all for responding. Personally, I hate not having an answer to an ice. If as a runner you cannot bypass a piece of ice then the game is practically over.

That being said, I agree that it is hard to deal with the high cost of handling certain large ice. However, the Criminal fraction is particularly good at it and almost every deck uses those cards:
Account Siphon
Emergency Shutdown
Forged Activation Orders
(Inside Job sometimes)

If you can pull off all three then just wow...
 
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John Smith
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What about bishop, ice carvers and femme or mimic? Better than data sucker?

The opposite is to build up the ice breakers' strength with Dinosaurus and personal touch. That is when free breakers like Yog.O start to shine.
 
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Deny Everything
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There's a lot of analysis on the subject out there, but it seems like you are enjoying your own so I won't spoil it, but my opinion:

a final rig usually consists of two mu dedicated to sentry killers. Main options being

Garrote
Easiest to set up. More for the late game runner.

Mimic plus
For the aggressive runner. Mimic is cheap for what it breaks. Plus (datasucker, fairie, deus ex, sharpshooter) addresses what it can't.

Femme plus
This is more of you like femme (which is often a separate question). It can get ridiculous on expensive ice, so assistance is necessary.

Alias and Crypsis
Possibly the best, but not out yet so theoretical. The core server breakers are fairly competitive with the better breakers, and you have much more control because you know you'll need Crypsis on remotes, unlike with other combinations where you don't know how strong the unrezzed ice is.
 
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