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Subject: Attending first draft tournament tomorrow: suggestions? rss

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Clyde W
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I have been dying to attend a draft event and tomorrow I'm heading over to Labyrinth Games in Washington DC (a few blocks away from my apartment--I love my life!) to attend my very first. When I was thinking about it this morning, I realized that because of the identities that have zero restrictions on deckbuilding, the games I play tomorrow will be completely unlike anything I've ever experienced with Netrunner. I'm excited!

Are there are suggestions to a first-timer from people who have done this before?
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Jacek Wieszaczewski
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Your deck will have stronger and weaker cards. Because of this, when drafting runner, take Mr. Li anytime you see him as he will greatly improve your draws.
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Mathieu
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Economy is very important for both sides. On the other side of the coin, things that cost a lot are not very good. Don't forget about the agenda goal when you pick agendas. Most agendas need to be installed and advanced over 2 turns, that means traps are better than in the usual meta where decks use fast advance strategies.

or.. Just use your sexy beast powers and pound them into submission!
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Carl Frodge
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Watch this video:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zptzwPqZcW0

Scott (Apreche) did a draft and he recounts the bad decisions he made while picking cards, so you could definitely learn from his mistakes.
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Kevin D.
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Traps are awful in draft. Every corp deck has Snare! and every runner plays around it. As corp just draft a very straightforward deck focusing on economy, good agendas(not Fetal AI), and solid etr ice of all three types.

As runner you usually have plenty of time to set up your rig so draft an efficient one to ensure late game dominance. Ecomony, icebreakers, and draw/search effects are most important. You need to be able to get into remotes as that is where most agendas will end up.

Draft seems like very much a "back to basics" format where solid economy and timing are the keys to success.
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Nate K
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On the Corp side, make sure you have both early- and late-game ice, and a plan for winning. (The Scorched Earth route can work in draft, for example, but you'll have to pass up other good cards to get the pieces you need.)

On the Runner side, make sure you get good breakers. You really don't want to be relying on Crypsis to get through.
 
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Anton R.
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Pick economy!
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Clyde W
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Thanks all! Will report back my experiences!
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Clyde W
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Just back from the tournament.

I won my pod! I have no idea how that happened. Crazy times for sure. We had six players per pod, with two pods, and each pod played four matches. I went 1-1, 1-1, 2-0, and 1-1, for a total of 5-3, 3 wins as Runner, 2 as Corp. Overall, Corps lost way more than Runners over the course of the day, but in one of my matches, I actually won as the Corp and lost on time as the Runner, to the TD David Kempe. We were matched up first, and he very nearly won running (but I Scorched him for the win) and won handily as Corp. He had crazy good decks, from what I could tell.

Here are the "brilliant" decks I drafted:
April 2014 Labyrinth Draft Tournament

The Masque: Cyber General (Special)

Event (8)
1x Déjà Vu (Core Set) ••
1x Easy Mark (Core Set)
1x Infiltration (Core Set)
2x Sure Gamble (Core Set)
2x Surge (Humanity's Shadow) ••
1x The Maker's Eye (Core Set) ••

Hardware (5)
1x Akamatsu Mem Chip (Core Set)
1x Cyberfeeder (Core Set)
2x Grimoire (Core Set) ••••
1x Plascrete Carapace (What Lies Ahead)

Resource (8)
1x Aesop's Pawnshop (Core Set) ••
1x Bank Job (Core Set) ••
1x Crash Space (Core Set) ••
1x Scrubber (A Study in Static)
2x The Helpful AI (What Lies Ahead) ••••
2x Underworld Contact (A Study in Static)

Icebreaker (7)
1x Battering Ram (Core Set) ••
1x Corroder (Core Set) ••
1x Crypsis (Core Set)
1x Deus X (A Study in Static)
1x Femme Fatale (Core Set)
1x Force of Nature (A Study in Static)
1x Peacock (What Lies Ahead) ••

Program (2)
1x Datasucker (Core Set)
1x Parasite (Core Set) ••

36 influence spent (max ∞)
30 cards (min 30)
Cards up to Humanity's Shadow

Decklist published on NetrunnerDB.

April 2014 Labyrinth Draft Tournament

The Shadow: Pulling the Strings (Special)

Agenda (8)
1x Braintrust (What Lies Ahead)
2x False Lead (A Study in Static)
1x Fetal AI (Trace Amount)
1x Hostile Takeover (Core Set)
1x Priority Requisition (Core Set)
1x Project Beale (Future Proof)
1x Project Vitruvius (Cyber Exodus)

Asset (6)
2x Melange Mining Corp. (Core Set)
2x PAD Campaign (Core Set)
1x Project Junebug (Core Set)
1x Ronin (Future Proof) ••••

Upgrade (4)
1x Bernice Mai (Humanity's Shadow) ••
1x Corporate Troubleshooter (Core Set)
1x Hokusai Grid (Humanity's Shadow) ••
1x Red Herrings (Core Set) ••

Operation (3)
1x Archived Memories (Core Set) ••
1x Closed Accounts (Core Set)
1x Scorched Earth (Core Set) ••••

Barrier (1)
1x Ice Wall (Core Set)

Code Gate (2)
2x Pop-up Window (Cyber Exodus) ••

Sentry (8)
3x Caduceus (What Lies Ahead) ••••• •
2x Data Raven (Core Set) ••••
2x Ichi 1.0 (Core Set) ••••
1x Janus 1.0 (What Lies Ahead) •••

ICE (1)
1x Chimera (Cyber Exodus)

39 influence spent (max ∞)
14 agenda points (between 14 and 15)
33 cards (min 30)
Cards up to Future Proof

Decklist published on NetrunnerDB.

One of my more memorable games was as Corp. The Runner (can't recall his name--sorry!) ran on his last click against HQ with one unrezzed ice. I have 5 credits, and so rezzed it, an Ichi 1.0. This allowed me to kill his Magnum Opus and Femme. That was amazing. So I decided to get cocky and on my turn advance a previously installed Project Beale 3 times, leaving it unscored. I was gonna go for a 6pt Beale win! Over the next two turns I advanced it twice more, so it was now at 4pts. Unfortunately, I miscalculated on the amount of money I needed to rez ice installed protecting it and he stole it. After that, I decided to play it safe and score a False Lead instead. He was very adamant on running R&D as much as possible, and I had two Data Ravens protecting that. He ran R&D on click 2 with 4 cards in his hand, took two tags and didn't hit an agenda. I forfeited False Lead, Scotched Earth, Archived Memories, Scorched Earth him for the win. My only two Corp wins were both from SE flatline.

On the Runner side, I had a better record but a HORRIBLE deck. Completely awful. I have no idea what I was doing drafting most of those cards. I even messed up and built the deck thinking I could have two Helpful AIs allow me to have 2 Underworld Contacts, but Kempe in our first match pointed out that Helpful AI is unique. WHAT? More like Unhelpful AI. I'd clone that bitch if I could. Anyway, that gave me 3 completely dead cards and 1 mostly useless card, but the fun didn't stop there. I had way too much memory and a bunch of super inefficient breakers (Force of Nature, Battering Ram, Peacock). But I suppose it didn't matter, because I ran ridiculously aggressive. Parasite was easily the MVP of the deck, allowing me to get into servers I had no business being in any other way. Femme was also pretty good, given the high number of Sentries drafted by the corps, but I hardly used her at all. Most of the time, I was running rigless.

My last Runner game was pretty memorable, and its outcome would determine if I won the pod or not. The Corp's R&D sat mostly undefended for a while, but he kept trashing ALL of my useful programs. I even stupidly hit a Snare at one point and lost my only Deja Vu AND my only Corroder. Super bad news. But whatever, I Parasited the Wall of Static protecting R&D and bided my time (there was another unrezzed card there as well, I wasn't sure what it was). In the meantime, the Corp was getting pretty low on cards, and I was going to try to deck him even though I was up on points. I had floated tags earlier in the match and he seemed upset when I decided to clear them, so I didn't know what that meant. Eventually my Parasite blows up the Wall of Static, and I start running his very thin R&D again. The unrezzed card it turns out is a Hunter, but I'm like, whatever, you think I care about tags? So I take them with the intent of trashing or stealing anything I could get ahold of. On my final turn of the game, with two cards left in R&D, I run, steal a random 1pt Agenda to get to 5 points, then run again and see the final card... ack! Scorched Earth. I have like 5 tags at this point from running the Hunter so much (and a brain damage from earlier). Third click I draw so I have 5 cards, fourth click I install Plasacrete in case it matters. The corp can't score any more points or flatline me on his final turn turn and I win my first match ever by decking! Amazing! If only I had also won a game with a 6pt Beale.




So, what were my overall thoughts about the Draft? I will say that the MOST important thing going into a draft is understanding the rarities of the cards in the packs. I had NO IDEA about what cards were considered rare, so in my opening hand of 10 cards as Corp, I pass over Hedge Fund and Liberated Account for a ... Chimera. Which is AWFUL in this format, because of both Crypsis and Darwin, two pretty common breakers. But I had no idea that Chimera is a card I'd see over and over again in subsequent hands. And of course I had no idea that I'd never see a single Hedge Fund ever again. I was quite lucky to pretty late in the draft snag 2 Melanges, which were easily my Corp MVP cards. Without those though? I'd have been in a world of hurt, econ-wise.

I never saw Magnum Opus as Runner, which I think is an auto-pick, given how often I clicked for credits, but at least I was slightly better at drafting econ cards in the Runner draft. After both drafts ended I was feeling pretty bad about my Corp and pretty good about my Runner, but my Runner deck was just horrible for me. I don't understand really how I went 3-1 as Runner, other than sheer luck and running far too aggressively for my own health. Who knows, maybe that threw people off? I probably should've been flatlined at least twice.

In hindsight, I think the Corp deck I drafted isn't actually all that bad. It has consistently taxing ice, a good mix of agendas, and despite what I thought after the draft, a pretty healthy economy, assuming I could Chimera a Melange in the early turns, which I did on multiple occasions. And while I didn't have that many issues scoring agendas, both of the wins were on SE Flatline, which I think highlights the strength of that card even more in draft format, where people were hardly ever prepared for it. If your deck is too slow, however, be prepared to be be decked. It can totally happen! Anonymous Tip is a dangerous card.

So, yeah, fun times at Labyirth and thanks big time to
David Kempe-Cook
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for running the tournament! I'd do it again for sure.
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Scott West
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I'm curious. How did your runner deck work with 2 Underworld Contacts and only one link (at a time)?
 
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Clyde W
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profligate wrote:
I'm curious. How did your runner deck work with 2 Underworld Contacts and only one link (at a time)?
It didn't. I didn't realize Helpful AI was unique when I built it, then in my first Runner game, Kempe pointed it out. Derp!
 
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Scott West
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clydeiii wrote:
profligate wrote:
I'm curious. How did your runner deck work with 2 Underworld Contacts and only one link (at a time)?
It didn't. I didn't realize Helpful AI was unique when I built it, then in my first Runner game, Kempe pointed it out. Derp!


Ouch.

Interesting read. I'm looking forward to doing some drafting myself, since I enjoyed drafting in M:tG and playing sealed deck in O:NR.
 
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Jeremy Brown
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clydeiii wrote:
profligate wrote:
I'm curious. How did your runner deck work with 2 Underworld Contacts and only one link (at a time)?
It didn't. I didn't realize Helpful AI was unique when I built it, then in my first Runner game, Kempe pointed it out. Derp!


I believe you can change up your draft deck between rounds. Did you have anything that you could have swapped in?
 
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Clyde W
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Auricle wrote:
clydeiii wrote:
profligate wrote:
I'm curious. How did your runner deck work with 2 Underworld Contacts and only one link (at a time)?
It didn't. I didn't realize Helpful AI was unique when I built it, then in my first Runner game, Kempe pointed it out. Derp!


I believe you can change up your draft deck between rounds. Did you have anything that you could have swapped in?
Oh?! Really?! Yes, the Armitage that comes in the Starter Set would've been significantly better. Clearly I didn't read the Draft Tournament rules going into this thing, otherwise I definitely would've swapped out those four cards with pretty much anything else.
 
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Clyde W
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hsiale wrote:
Your deck will have stronger and weaker cards. Because of this, when drafting runner, take Mr. Li anytime you see him as he will greatly improve your draws.
Never saw a single Mr. Li. Is he even in the draft packs?
 
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Micheal Keane
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I think I was in the other pod since it doesn't sound like we played each other.

On the corp side, I drafted a good amount of asset economy and some decent agendas but my ice was sorely lacking so I didn't have much to spend the money on.

Runner side I drafted anarch destruction. 4 demolition runs, 3 Imps, 1 Parasite and 1 Deja Vu plus some other virii (Datasucker, Medium, etc). So basically NoiseShop without Noise and the Shop. The best thing was that I drafted two Magnum Opuses. I decided to mulligan to get it in the opening hand. I otherwise ran lots of hardware. I realized after the first match that I could just go full blown TagMe so I started ignoring tags.

Not surprisingly, two of my Runner matches ended with flatlines, including a double-Scorched Earth by the winner (who drafted three!) and a private security force ping after a run on what I thought would be a game-winning agenda.
 
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Micheal Keane
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There was also a hilarious game next to me where a guy Data Dealer'd away 6 of the 7 agendas in the Corp's deck before decking for the win. Funny thing is that he very nearly lost due to time because she had scored one agenda and he had no points.
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Mathieu
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Did you feel traps were any good? (was the project junebug ever useful?)

I feel discarding some key cards can be very important in the games I played, but not everyone is agreeing. Maybe it's too luck dependent.
 
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Micheal Keane
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My traps got trashed before I could bluff them. I plowed into an advanced Aggressive Secretary one game but fortunately the Corp was too poor to activate it.
 
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Clyde W
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Borgoto wrote:
Did you feel traps were any good? (was the project junebug ever useful?)

I feel discarding some key cards can be very important in the games I played, but not everyone is agreeing. Maybe it's too luck dependent.
Too luck dependent?

And what do you mean "discarding some key cards can be important"? During play, or the draft?

I definitely had to discard a ton of crap cards in my runner deck, and I discarded a few cards as corp. It's just my style to draw very little as corp and draw a whole lot as runner. Drawing in corp only makes sense if you really need an agenda or final piece of a kill combo.
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Clyde W
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I only drafted a single trap if I recall, and didn't ever use it. I think Snares are slightly better than Project Junebug in this format, but they have different uses. If you do plan on running them, be sure to hate draft away the Infiltrations.
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Mathieu
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clydeiii wrote:
Borgoto wrote:
Did you feel traps were any good? (was the project junebug ever useful?)

I feel discarding some key cards can be very important in the games I played, but not everyone is agreeing. Maybe it's too luck dependent.
Too luck dependent?

And what do you mean "discarding some key cards can be important"? During play, or the draft?

I definitely had to discard a ton of crap cards in my runner deck, and I discarded a few cards as corp. It's just my style to draw very little as corp and draw a whole lot as runner. Drawing in corp only makes sense if you really need an agenda or final piece of a kill combo.


I meant that doing damage to the runner can be useless if it does not kill them or make them discard important cards. But if they discard important stuff, it can turn a game. In my drafts, I have seen multiple losses because of traps, especially secretary. But it may be players in my area which are not cautious enough.
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Clyde W
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Oh, yes, I see. Yes, due the draft format, you are likely only running one of each type of icebreaker and maybe a few AIs. If any of those are trashed, you're really screwed. I got lucky to get a Deja Vu, but like I wrote above, in one of my games, a Snare took it and my only Corroder away from me.
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Zeb
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I drafted and used 4 Aggressive Secretaries in a game but was never able to trigger them
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Jeremy Brown
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Zebadiah wrote:
I drafted and used 4 Aggressive Secretaries in a game but was never able to trigger them


You never fooled me, Zeb.
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