Syrus Starter Deck - 3rd at Bromley (Warboar) store champs

znsolomon 104

Syrus

(For those who don’t get the reference, this is Syrus Truesdale, the main sidekick of yugioh GX. He uses a ‘roid’ deck…geddit?)

So, after playing variants of this deck on and off for a year, I finally made a cut with AoT, so I get to give you my thoughts on the ID/archetype as a whole. The 3 realisations that made this deck infinitely better are as follows:

  1. You cannot play AoT like a traditional glacier deck. Your ID ability can give you credit swings on par to CTM, but unlike them you don’t get anything if the runner just sits back. Therefore, traditional glacier strategies don’t work, you need the runner to run often.

  2. All of your ice is porous. And I mean ALL of it. The price you pay for cheap, strong ice is that not a single subroutine as printed in this deck will always fire on encounter. Acclimatising yourself to this fact is one of the key steps to playing AoT properly. All this means that:

  3. You cannot play 5/3 agendas. Playing a 5/3 agenda in a deck is a statement of purpose, basically saying that ‘my game plan involves scoring at least one of these’. However, your porous ice combined with wanting the runner to be run-happy means you cannot guarantee on any single agenda being scored.

That seems like a good time to move onto the cards, starting with agendas so I can explain the madness that is my agenda suite:

• 3 Vitruvius: Standard for any HB, good for never-advancing. I almost never over-advance, but if you can get away with it recurring some econ/a batty is always a good idea.

• 2 CST: The deck tends to float around 5-10 credits all game, so scoring one of these early is a godsend and tends to increase my win rate considerably. Only 2 as the effect is not useful if you’re rich.

• 2 Successful Field Test: Sometimes, I draw this while poor and wish it was another econ agenda. Other times, I draw this when my opponent has a crazy late game (Geist, Smoke, Haley) and thank my lucky stars. Nothing feels better than throwing down a ton of ice and an econ asset/agenda into the newly vacated remote.

• 2 CFC Excavation Contract: AoT’s pet card, the mistake most people make with this is not scoring it, even if not many bioroids are rezzed. The potential gains from this card are too great not to include 2 copies, and the final agenda can help it out a bit…

• 2 Bifrost Array: Now hold on, I can explain. This deck is on a score-4 plan, so a 1-pointer is nice. Plus, you’re playing 6 agendas with powerful on-score effects, and getting them again is really good. SFT’ing this into a remote, then scoring it to drop another agenda in can inject a ton of fuel into your rush plan, and bifrosting a CST will give you drip for the whole game. Plus, you get a comeback for the people who laughed at your 0-credit CFC score…

Assets/upgrades/operations:

• Campaigns (3 Adonis/3 Marilyn/2 Launch): A pretty standard asset econ package. The trick here is to use these to force the runner to get through your ice, and to money up if they don’t. Often, the money they get is much less important than the money the runner spends/ice they let you rez, so jam ‘em and always rez (even if you lose a credit from adonis you’ll make back 4 from your ID). One thing to watch is anyone packing tapwrm, be careful not to install too many assets!

• 3 Daily Business Show: As you can see, the deck has a lot of moving parts, and getting the right ones into your hand at the right time is really useful. Also synergises hilariously with Eli 2.0. Was trashed on sight in all but one of my games, but always does serious work if they let it live.

• 2 MCA: The deck doesn’t have enough money to commit to a full FA plan, but this is a nice ‘trash or die’ card that also makes your bioriods that much trickier to get through. 2 is just the right number.

• 3 Marcus Batty: To be honest, the batties started out as a way of sinking influence on cards. They are pretty good, not entirely sure there should be 3 of them as they clog up space in the early game, but late game they work wonders. If I had no influence to spend, these would be Warroid Trackers in a heartbeat.

• 3 Hedge Fund: Is a slightly popular card, I hear.

• 2 Preemptive Action: Get back econ, get back batties, get back ice/agendas that got maw-ed out of hand. You can never really go wrong with a bit of recursion.

So, for the ice I’m gonna do something a bit differently. You see, there isn’t much bioroid ice, and most of it is bad, so I don’t really need to justify putting the good ones in the deck. What I’m going to do instead, then, is to tell you where it’s best to place the ice. Ice placement is about 50% of the piloting skill in this deck (the rest is an even split between spotting scoring windows and choosing what to rez), so it’s good to know. Without further ado:

• 3 Eli 2.0: Is a great deterrent until someone drops a paperclip, and a good starting point for a scoring server. Never put it on a central, people will just farm turning wheel counters off it.

• 3 Fairchild 2.0: Super taxing for the cost, and one of the only ice you can comfortably rez the normal way. However, avoid using these on the remote if possible, as plenty of hail-mary runs can be made through it. Brain damage isn’t that bad, right?

• 3 Ravana 1.0: Oh man, this card straight up rocks. Have no fear to hard rez it with no other rezzed bioroids, as 3 credits is as cheap as you’re gonna get. Can go anywhere and everywhere, with the caveat being it’s a little more vulnerable to cutlery than other ice.

• 3 Fairchild 3.0: Expensive, but totally worth it. This can go anywhere, but try to identify your opponent’s targeted central and stick it there, rather than just jamming it on HQ for no reason. Equally viable on the remote, but shares Ravana's weakness to spoons.

• 3 Ichi 1.0: Pretty much the only good sentry, but it sucks to draw early, so slap it on a central and bluff it as ice that actually does anything. Also great as a 2nd/3rd piece of remote ice.

• 1 Loki: The only ice in the deck that can potentially get a hard ETR, so you’d think this is remote ice, but I can only really justify one in the deck, so this often gets drawn later and used to shore up whichever central I’m bleeding agendas out of.

• 1 Fairchild: Can single-handedly win you the game, but handle with care. ALWAYS goes on the remote, to be rezzed through your ID ability. As soon as you rez this, get ready to rush, cause those 5 credits you spent means that your centrals are much weaker than normal and smart runners will hit them hard.

Right, that pretty much covers everything. If anyone needs matchup advice then drop me a comment.

This deck went 2-3 at Warboar, but all the losses were close. Wins against Geist and wonky combo Reina. Losses against maw Maxx 3 times (2 of which were the same deck). Someone told me this is the best ‘fair’ corp deck in the meta, and I agree. It’s not as good as CI, Aginfusion or CTM, but I find the games a lot more fun. Enjoy!

7 comments
12 Dec 2017 Krams

Ichi 1.0 is not the only good Sentry. I still stand by my regular Zed 2.0 includes :D
Certainly not 3-of material, but can potentially be used to Batty away a console, which can be devastating.

12 Dec 2017 znsolomon

@Krams, I'm afraid after extensive testing, I have concluded that Zed 2.0 is a bad card, and does not work in this deck at all, for 4 reasons. 1) Zed does absolutely nothing on it's own, especially early game. See above how I railed on Ichi 1.0 for the same reason. 2) Even in the later game, zed does not have the immediate impact I'm looking for out of ice. You really need to pair it with batty to have any chance of sniping hardware. 3) The batty combo requires 2 cards (one of which is very cheap to trash) to be installed, you to bait the runner to run that server, and to win a psi game, and that's really hard when: 4) Zed costs 6 credits. If you look at the 5 pieces of ice in the deck that cost 6 or more, they all have very powerful effects that are always dangerous for the runner. If you rez zed with your id ability, the runner will see the combo coming and won't run if they want to keep their console.

TL;DR, zed is a bad card. This deck really doesn't like maw, but the time maw is effective (early game) is the time where setting up zed would require you to weaken the deck (to include multiple copies) and your credit pool too much.

12 Dec 2017 Krams

Thanks for your answer, your reasons make a lot of sense.

12 Dec 2017 Krams

@znsolomon Thanks for your answer. Your reasons make a lot of sense.
I guess Zed really want the runner to have their console out, but not their killer. Which is a really slim window in the game, if it happens at all.

13 Dec 2017 znsolomon

@KramsDon't get me wrong, I think the deck could benefit from some hardware destruction (you REALLY don't like maw), but Zed is not the way to go.

16 Jan 2018 NoahTheDuke

What do you think of Najja 1.0? Given that you don't seem to like Eli 2.0, might this find a slot?

21 Feb 2018 znsolomon

@NoahTheDukeOh HELL yes. 3x Najja replaced the elis as soon as it came out. that card does so much work towards making this ID viable.

Also great new cards: Jinja City Grid is good even with no extra draw, just slap one in the scoring server and enjoy your free clicks (replaces launch campaign), and NGO Front does the bluffing thing better than any other asset we've got. You never needed the money from Adonis Campaign anyway, so I swapped 'em over.