Android Netrunner: What to Expect

Android: Netrunner is a two player cyberpunk themed card game by Fantasy Flight. Unlike a collectible card game where each pack is random, Android: Netrunner is a Living Card Game so there is no need to worry about rarity. Everything is fixed in a data pack or a deluxe box and the cards come in sets.

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In a game of Netrunner, players assume the role of a mega corporation and a runner (the hacker).  In order to win, one player has to score seven agenda points. For the Corp, they have to advance their agendas in a server, but he could also win by killing the runner through flatlining them (dealing damage more than their hand). The Runner on the other hand, has to steal seven agenda points from a server, the Corp’s hand, deck or even the discard pile. The Runner can also wait out the game until the Corp can no longer draw.

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Both Corp and Runner have different set of cards. While the Corporations have their Assets, Operations, Upgrades and ICE (Firewalls for securing server), the Runner also has his/her Connections, Events, Hardware, Mods and Programs for breaking through ICE. Each role plays differently as the Corp will always play defensively while the Runner will always be the aggressor.

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Each role is also divided into several factions with their own distinct play styles. For the Runner, there is Shaper, Criminal and Anarch. As for the Corp there is NBN, Weyland, Jinteki and Haas-Bioroid. They are also subdivided into different IDs, so take your pick!

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A Game of Bluffing and Experimentation

One unique thing about Netrunner is that it can often be a game of poker. Bluffing is essential, since the Corp will always plays his card face down, including the ones he discarded, this is why information is key. One peek from a card on the top his deck might be vital on what programs to use on a run, or what kinds traps may be in store for the runner—and with large card pool consisting of more than forty data packs, anything could be possible.

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There will always be variance in Netrunner as most of the cards you’ll get are playable competitively. There is room for experimentation so it’s entirely up to the player’s preference on what kind of deck he or she would like to make. There are plenty of IDs in the game that support different deck archetypes so don’t be surprise you’ll  come across a Corp who can score seven agenda in one turn (only after a long set up of course).

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The Cebu Community

As for the Netrunner community in Cebu City, most of us are new. Only last October did we have our first official tournament courtesy of Ballista Games with a deluxe box as the prize. Prior to that, Ballista Games held a beginners tournament last September to introduce new players to the game.

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Back then, we didn’t have official kits from Fantasy Flight or a proper store so we settled for data packs from the organizers. Now, with Dice Kong opened as the main HQ for Ballista Games, and with the confirmation of Gaming Library and Fantasy Flight, the Netrunner Community in Cebu has finally found a home where they can hold a Store Championship. If you want to learn the game, feel free to join us every Thursday during Weekly Wyldside.

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