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Subject: Getting better at running rss

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Tanner Griffin
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I am confident in my decks and abilities as corp. I win a lot when I'm corp; I have an HB deck that I win more than 70% of games with. A good portion of those are shutouts too.

However, I am really bad at running. I have won so little as runner that it's almost embarrassing, particularly after winning as corp.

My question is, are there general runner strategy guides somewhere? I want to be able to at least hold my own as a runner, even if I don't win every time.
 
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Steve Prahl
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run early run often
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Carl Frodge
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I asked similar questions when I first started. Hopefully this thread will be of some help:
http://boardgamegeek.com/thread/1131152/basic-strategy
 
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Sean Trundle
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victorygamesllc wrote:
run early run often


True as it ever was, but I would add: don't be afraid of unsuccessful runs.

I find that once people get the hang of "run early, run often," they start overextending themselves with early aggression, thinking every installed card HAS to be run/trashed/etc. Then they burn out by mid-game and create huge scoring windows.

The key to "run early, run often" is that you're forcing the corp to respond to you. They have to spend credits, clicks, and cards defending servers. That doesn't mean you necessarily have to spend resources right now to get into those servers. It's often better to let them score a couple of points or reap 2-3 credits from a PAD Campaign than to cripple yourself for the next 3 turns.

On a similar note, I'd also suggest that you know the econ options in your deck, and keep a certain amount of "startup capital" in mind as a soft floor for yourself. E.g. if you're relying a lot on Dirty Laundry and Daily Casts, try not to drop below 2-3 credits. If you're planning for most of your cash to come from Magnum Opus, try not to dip too far below 5 until you get it on the table. On the other hand, if you've already got an MO on the table, you should be a lot more comfortable zeroing out since it will only take a couple of clicks to recover. In any case, whatever your threshold is, you can drop below it in a pinch (e.g. to trash a rezzed SanSan), but make sure that whatever you're doing is worth the damage you're about to do to your own tempo (spoiler: a single random access of R&D usually isn't worth it). There are few things quite as painful in Netrunner as clicking for credits five times just to play a Sure Gamble.
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Nephtys Nephtys
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1. Know all the ICE that can be rezzed for how much money the Corp has, and be willing to accept the negative consequences (It's OK to faceplant through a Neural Katana sometimes, or hit a roto... and not at others)

2. If you force the corp to rez an ETR ICE, you're WINNING as Runner. That drained money from the Corp without harming you, or advancing the Corp's plan to score.

3. Being afraid to hit unrezzed ICE means that the corp just payed 0 credits for an unbroken ETR.

4. Decide what you're willing to allow the Corp to have (Econ asset, Scored Agenda) in exchange for buying yourself time to make your position better (building up money, getting another icebreaker, etc)

5. Don't throw good money on bad investments. At match point? Don't blow your entire wad and open a scoring window just to randomly see 1 card from hand or R&D, unless it's a total desparation play (ie, Astrochain will win if you don't win on the next run)
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Zak Jarvis
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If you're worried about being too tentative, you could try playing Reina Roja. It'll give you a little nudge to make the most of your ability!
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Benjamin White
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Nephtys wrote:

2. If you force the corp to rez an ETR ICE, you're WINNING as Runner. That drained money from the Corp without harming you, or advancing the Corp's plan to score.


This. Any ICE Rezzed that only says "End the run" is a simple challenge that you can beat and it cost you much less than the Corp.
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Wesley Kinslow
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Make sure you have a full hand and run as much as you can before installing ANYTHING, especially programs.
 
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Erin OConnor
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don't worry. I am in the same boat as you.

I have the corporation side of the house down.

I am getting better as the runner. I cant tell you how to do it I can only tell you what is [starting] working for me.

1. Pick an ID.
2. Build a deck.
3. Play it. Play it. Play it. Play it.
4. Change out cards that you think are not working. Add in cards that you think may help.
3. Play it. Play it. Play it. Play it.
4. Change out cards that you think are not working. Add in cards that you think may help.
3. Play it. Play it. Play it. Play it.
4. Change out cards that you think are not working. Add in cards that you think may help.

Choose another ID and repeat the process.

[edit]
+Build your own decks. Know what you are putting in and why. Know what you are taking out and why.
+try as many ID as you can. They each play different from each other.

Eventually you will find a runner ID/deck that you are comfortable playing with. I generally like the shaper decks. I really like having all my breakers down with a pile of cash to run with.

I finally build a KIT deck and I am actually starting to have more success on the runner side of the house. Her ability is nice since you only need 1 breaker early. Shaper also have 6 cards you can use to tutor out programs with. Steal some forged activation orders from criminal and things start to fall in to place. (especially if you hit the corporation with Escher) (there is a lot more to it than that like economy etc but...)

Hope that helps.
 
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Greg Nordeng
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3 things:

-Watch how better runners run against you and duplicate their patterns.
-Watch other player IRL or via videos from stronger players
-Run more

That will help!
 
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Mike Bialecki
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Here's my advice. Don't fixate on the content of your runner deck. It's probably a safe assumption that you are experienced enough to have built a reasonable deck. So don't look for cards to add to it to make you a better runner - that's just a band-aid solution.

You need to focus on the sort of deck-independent skills that others have been discussing. One of the most important skills I learned was to keep pressure on the corporation's remotes. That doesn't necessarily mean that you are always running the remote, it just means that you always have the resources in hand to run it if you needed to. This means that you shouldn't waste your time on a single-card access R&D run if you will no longer have the resources to get into the main remote. But keep in mind that you can always start a run on R&D (or wherever) with no intention of going all the way through. If there's a new piece of unrezzed outer ICE, I'll often times run it to force the corporation to rez it, then end the run allowing me to save credits to keep up the pressure on their remote. With any luck, I'll eventually have an efficient enough rig that allows me to regularly run and access their R&D and still have enough resources left to maintain pressure on their remote - the dreaded "R&D Lock."
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"Don't be afraid of unsuccessful runs" is very solid advice.

I was playing GRNDL the other night and had a fair amount of ICE protecting my servers. The runner continued to make runs again and again, never really getting through. Everytime he'd make a punch, I'd rez a piece of ICE and think, "Aha! Kept you out again!" He kept doing this, bouncing off of Curtain Walls and Tollbooths, seemingly making no progress. I was feeling pretty good and mighty safe.

Until I looked at my credit pool and realized I had like 8 credits. "Where did my 45 Credits go?!"

And Richie Rich McMoneybags was no more. The runner had lulled me into a false sense of security. I felt protected behind my ICE and watched as he "wasted" click after click pinging off of my servers. But that adds up quickly and it can quickly turn the tides on your plan.
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Gregory Pettigrew
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Unfortunately, I am in the same boat and have seen all of these suggestions before. This is all level zero and level one advice. Geek Gold to anyone who seriously improves the way I play the Running Game.
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Captain Frisk
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etherial wrote:
Unfortunately, I am in the same boat and have seen all of these suggestions before. This is all level zero and level one advice. Geek Gold to anyone who seriously improves the way I play the Running Game.


To get past level 0 / 1 advice, you need to start talking specifics vs. generic advice. Throw up a deck in the strategy forum, and give us a session recap from the last game or two you played and lost with it.
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If you're very comfortable as corp then think about what makes it hard for you when you're playing them and flip it round.

EG:

You have a pile of cash as corp.
The runner goes for a face-check, you rez a tasty piece of expensive ice and look smug.
Then you realise that rezzing your San-san and scoring that agenda will take your money real low, or at least low enough that rezzing more ice will pretty much empty your account, so now you have a dilemma: score and be vulnerable, or hold back.

So flip that thought round to the runner side:
Even if they have loads of money, as long as you're suitably protected it's still worth running on stuff as that is how you create windows for yourself (or one way at least).
 
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Mike Bialecki
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etherial wrote:
Unfortunately, I am in the same boat and have seen all of these suggestions before. This is all level zero and level one advice. Geek Gold to anyone who seriously improves the way I play the Running Game.



Well, to get level 2 and level 3 advice, you have to ask something a little bit more specific than, "How do I play better as a runner?"

Level 4 and level 5 advice requires some sort of monetary compensation. And level 6 advice only comes after you've proven yourself worthy in front of The Council of ANR Elders.
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Zeb
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mbialeck wrote:
etherial wrote:
Unfortunately, I am in the same boat and have seen all of these suggestions before. This is all level zero and level one advice. Geek Gold to anyone who seriously improves the way I play the Running Game.



Well, to get level 2 and level 3 advice, you have to ask something a little bit more specific than, "How do I play better as a runner?"

Level 4 and level 5 advice requires some sort of monetary compensation. And level 6 advice only comes after you've proven yourself worthy in front of The Council of ANR Elders.


All hail the Council of ANR Elders! May they remain elderly as long as they live!
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Lluluien
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Captain_Frisk wrote:
etherial wrote:
Unfortunately, I am in the same boat and have seen all of these suggestions before. This is all level zero and level one advice. Geek Gold to anyone who seriously improves the way I play the Running Game.


To get past level 0 / 1 advice, you need to start talking specifics vs. generic advice. Throw up a deck in the strategy forum, and give us a session recap from the last game or two you played and lost with it.


I disagree; I think between the level 0/1 advice and the next set, there's a level in there where you start to consider whether or not any particular "run early, run often" runs that you make are going to impale yourself on a spike. That's more about knowing the Corp deck and less about knowing the Runner deck, in my opinion.
 
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Daniel Wray
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You say you have your Corp side nailed down? How many different ID's and factions do you play? How solid is your understanding of all the different Corp tactics (not just your own fine-tuned deck)? Just a shot in the dark here, but if someone only ever played one faction/deck as a Corp, their Runner side would likely suffer. Having a solid grasp of the full Corp card pool is very important to determining your play. (not saying this is you, geniunely curious)

Another question - due to the assymetrical knowledge levels of each side, some people fare better with one or the other. Do you find yourself 'tilted' during the Runner game grappling with what you don't know?

What do you see as your biggest fail point? In a match, what is the thing that most seems to keep you from winning? (not enough money for everything, hitting traps, getting scorched, locked out of servers, etc)

Maybe with some of this information we can help you better identify what's happening in your Runner games.
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Daniel Wray
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Another recommendation. Have your opponent tell you where you went wrong. They know the board state from the other side, they can tell you what mistakes you made. Accumulate that knowledge and adapt. Your victorius enemies are your best teachers. Also, the A:NR community being what it is, most players will be more than happy to do post-game analysis with you.
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Gregory Pettigrew
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cynchwyrm wrote:
You say you have your Corp side nailed down? How many different ID's and factions do you play? How solid is your understanding of all the different Corp tactics (not just your own fine-tuned deck)? Just a shot in the dark here, but if someone only ever played one faction/deck as a Corp, their Runner side would likely suffer. Having a solid grasp of the full Corp card pool is very important to determining your play. (not saying this is you, geniunely curious)

Another question - due to the assymetrical knowledge levels of each side, some people fare better with one or the other. Do you find yourself 'tilted' during the Runner game grappling with what you don't know?

What do you see as your biggest fail point? In a match, what is the thing that most seems to keep you from winning? (not enough money for everything, hitting traps, getting scorched, locked out of servers, etc)

Maybe with some of this information we can help you better identify what's happening in your Runner games.


I have 9 Corp decks built ATM. My best decks are my Cerebral Imaging, Because We Built It, and Making News decks, all of which have ~70% win rates. My ETF is kind of vestigial at this point. I keep meaning to try UpInc but never get around to it. My best Runner decks are Mahamacatman and Noiseshop, which chew through Corps when they're On and die slowly and painfully when they're Off. I used to have a great Virus Gabe deck that I used to defeat the Plugged-In Challenge Decks, but the Corp play in the area has pulled away from it and it's not very successful anymore.

I cruised into the top 8 in Regionals last year, but since then everyone else's Corp play has gotten better and my Running really hasn't.
 
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Daniel Wray
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Quote:
I cruised into the top 8 in Regionals last year, but since then everyone else's Corp play has gotten better and my Running really hasn't.


How big is your local meta? Are you familiar with everyone you play or are do you play against unknowns often? Sometimes the factor ends up being people learning your deck(s) and your play. Not sure how that would equate to lopsided Corp/Runner wins, but it could be contributing. Playing a close friend or regular sparring partner is often a very different game than a tourney setting with a random opponent.

Again, just thoughts.
 
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Captain Frisk
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lluluien wrote:
Captain_Frisk wrote:
etherial wrote:
Unfortunately, I am in the same boat and have seen all of these suggestions before. This is all level zero and level one advice. Geek Gold to anyone who seriously improves the way I play the Running Game.


To get past level 0 / 1 advice, you need to start talking specifics vs. generic advice. Throw up a deck in the strategy forum, and give us a session recap from the last game or two you played and lost with it.


I disagree; I think between the level 0/1 advice and the next set, there's a level in there where you start to consider whether or not any particular "run early, run often" runs that you make are going to impale yourself on a spike. That's more about knowing the Corp deck and less about knowing the Runner deck, in my opinion.


Probably a discussion best elsewhere, but I'm with you - my request for deck AND recap was to basically get enough information to be able to provide efficient feedback.

I'm sure you and I could spout off hundreds of next level pointers (since as you point out run early run often isn't exactly great advice for every runner vs. every corp) However, the only thing we know about the person requesting advice is that he's already read the other advice in here. If he posts a deck and a session report, we can start to understand whether his running problems are associated with:

1. Deck that could require tuning (perhaps he's playing Professor and doesn't understand why he's only winning 45% of the time vs. tournament caliber players)
2. Specific matchup problems
3. A bizarre meta where everyone knows how to play corp better than anyone else in the world so its impossible to win > 30% of your games as runner.

Basically, I'm not sure what "generic" advice I could provide beyond:

Level 0: You should probably run more. The corporation isn't actually wearing any clothes. If you're planning on taking credits and drawing - draw first. Don't run on your 4th click.
Level 1: The corporation sometimes does wear clothes. You can run on your 4th click sometimes. Don't run on your 2nd click vs. false lead. Always keep money vs. weyland. Count influence, scout your opponents deck to determine how you should play. You should consider the game state fully before making your course of action. (respective credit pools, what is the worst thing that could happen if you run, whats the worst thing that can happen if you don't)

Beyond that - most of what I'd consider to be "advanced" knowledge is specific to game state based on experience. I don't want to spend a bunch of time with other tips and tricks and then be told that he already knows all that too!
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Ian Neufeld
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Okay, I'll bite on the Advice Levels.

* The Corporation has money, Ice, and Agendas. You have money and Programs. Money spent rezzing Ice is not spent scoring Agendas. Make the Corp rez Ice to deny them the money they need to score. Money spent installing the wrong programs is wasted. Make the Corp rez Ice so you know what programs are best to install and when (if all three pieces of Ice on the board are Barriers, why are you installing Yog.0?)

* The Corporation might refuse to rez a piece of Ice if the cost outweighs the benefit. Paying to rez an Archer against a Runner with no rig is painful for the Corporation. Rezzing a Tollbooth against a Runner with no money is also a losing game. If a Corp is refusing to rez a piece of Ice against you, think about why that is. Is it too expensive? Will the loss of surprise hurt them? Do they have something that will stop you better? Are they not worried about your access?

* Sometimes a lot of runs is best, sometimes one big surgical run is best. Some decks benefit more from lots of cheap runs, some decks are best with a massive "access 6 cards from R&D" run. A deck that wants lots of cheap runs should focus on denying the Corp the economy for their Ice (or destroy the Ice). A deck that wants only a couple massive runs should focus on their own economy and strong penetration tools. Even a surgical run deck can benefit from some limited early aggression to keep the Corp slowed down.

* A Corp deck can be built in one of four ways: "I will score like crazy", "I plan to score out, but will threaten a kill if you're not careful", "I plan to kill fast, but can score if left unchecked", or "I will burn your house down and kill all your friends". The sooner you understand what the priority of the Corp deck is, the sooner you can play to counter it. What does the Corp need you to be doing in order to succeed, and how can you best counter it?

* Just like the Runner, the Corp is limited to 3 copies of a card and a finite amount of influence. Most decks do not actually use 3 copies of each card (especially high-influence out of faction ones), because just like you sometimes it's more beneficial to have diversity (mixed Ice) or 2 copies of a card that are best used once/game.

* Keep the Corp honest. There are safe moves (like discarding the Shock!), and there are sneaky moves (like discarding the agenda to recover it later). Make sure you check to see if the Corp is trying to pull sneaky moves on you.

* If the Corp discards, check Archives. Not only can this force them to burn Jackson to save agendas, it also means you can see what cards the Corp does not consider valuable right now. Was the Psychographics not valuable because they already have a second one in hand? Of course you threw away the Chimera now that I have Crypsis, but why did you throw Enigma too if I don't have a strong decoder out? If I negate the reasons you would want to keep these cards, what am I left with as your current game plan?

* If the Runner is at Match point, it is usually a very tense time for the Corporation. It is easy to force them to rez every new piece of Ice on R&D because a single access could be the end of the game for them. Can you use that to punish the Corporation economically so that even when they finally get the Agenda, they won't have the ability to score it?

* What is the Ice of my enemy trying to accomplish? Am I being taxed? Am I being stopped? Am I being tagged? If I assume that there are multiple copies of the first couple Ice I encounter, but not of Ice that appear later, what kind of strategy is being used? Does my opponent want me to come in? Lose my cards? Break my rig? Why?
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Gregory Pettigrew
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OK, I got a specific question. How do you guys deal with Punitive Counterstrike? Assume for the purpose of this exercise that Plascrete Carapace is not an option (you can't always succeed in drawing it). I find Scorched Earth relatively easy to play around, but if Weyland is able to get an early credit lead, I can't wait for the Runner Economy to outpace them, I have to risk getting dirty by Stealing a 3-pointer.

Since trying to play around this one card lost me 2 games last night, I want your thoughts.
 
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