|The Next Evolution
Honor and Profit Is Now Available for Android: Netrunner
|Android: Netrunner The Card Game | Published 30 April 2014|
“I saw it coming… That was the problem.”
–Silhouette describes a close encounter with a psychic field
Personal evolution or personal profit – choose your path.
Honor and Profit, the second deluxe expansion for Android: Netrunner is now available at your local retailer and online through our webstore! With 165 cards (three copies each of fifty-five different cards) split primarily between the game’s Jinteki and Criminal factions, Honor and Profit floods the game with a dizzying array of tricks and traps, as well as a host of ambushes, ice, ops, AI, and connections that are certain to appeal to all fans.
Meanwhile, even as its cards focus on the Jinteki corporation and the game’s Criminals, Honor and Profit looks to make a major impact upon the very nature of the game’s cyberstruggles.
In our previews, we’ve seen how Jinteki becomes more devious and more lethal than ever, Criminals gain the means to enhance their most established strategies and explore new ones, and every faction benefits from the new technologies hitting the market. Now, as the expansion becomes available, guest writer El-ad David Amir explores how its cards might impact the game’s constantly evolving metagame.
Guest Writer El-ad David Amir on the Next Evolution
Honor and Profit draws us into the conflicts between the Jinteki corporation and three notable Criminals. Both of these factions are known for their aggressive approaches to the game, and the tricks and traps that they uncork during their struggles will have resounding implications for the entire net. Players must tread carefully; all bets are off with this latest addition to the game.
Traditional Criminal strategies revolve around mercilessly pummeling central servers, exploiting every chink in the Corp’s armor and undermining their economy. A new suite of breakers – Alias (Honor and Profit, 41), Breach (Honor and Profit, 42), and Passport (Honor and Profit, 46) – augment this ability well. For Criminals, they free up influence often spent on Corroder (Core Set, 7), Gordian Blade (Core Set, 43), or other out-of-faction programs.
Still, these tactics can spill over to other factions, and any Runner can benefit from these Criminal tools. Shapers and Anarchs will be especially fond of Alias because it’s such a cheap and efficient killer. The theme of efficient solutions continues with Grappling Hook (Honor and Profit, 45) and Overmind (Honor and Profit, 53), both of which could jeopardize seemingly well-defended servers throughout the game.
An important side effect of this suite of breakers is that Account Siphon (Core Set, 18), the Criminal faction's bread-and-butter economy denial card, becomes even easier to trigger. The fifteen-credit swing a successful Siphon offers can single-handedly decide the game, and another run event from Honor and Profit is the perfect companion to this weapon. Planned Assault (Honor and Profit, 36) effectively doubles your chances of drawing Account Siphon when you need it. It also opens up a toolbox approach to Runner deck construction, in which you stock the deck with a greater variety of run events, and fewer copies of each, then use Planned Assault to pull them according to the circumstances of your game.
In the previews, we also saw the economy denial provided by Donut Taganes (Honor and Profit, 55), a new Connection that increases the cost of all events and operations by one. Still, it’s worth noting that the symmetric aspect of Taganes is a ruse. Current Corp economies are highly biased toward operations, relying upon such staples as Hedge Fund (Core Set, 110) and Sweeps Week (True Colors, 76) to stockpile their credits, while Runners often draw their credits from a mix of events and resources.
The game’s Runners aren’t the only ones becoming more aggressive with the new cards from Honor and Profit. As Jinteki unveils a series of deadly ambushes, ice and operations, their latest developments offer the Corps more damage and higher payoffs than ever before.
Psychic Field (Honor and Profit, 10) is a new ambush that empowers all manner of mind games. Psychic Field is operational immediately once it’s installed, and if the runner accesses or exposes it, it completely wipes his grip. Naturally, Psychic Field complements the Jinteki shell game, where the Corp installs multiple servers and does not rez or advance them until necessary, but thanks to its low influence cost, it is also a great asset to splash in other factions. In NBN, it could masquerade as a dangerous AstroScript Pilot Program (Core Set, 81) or Breaking News (Core Set, 82). Komainu (Honor and Profit, 17), a piece of Jinteki ice, is another card that may find a home in a variety of Corp decks, as it can completely obliterate the Runner’s grip.
Another aggressive card, Mushin No Shin (Honor and Profit, 15) – “mind without mind” – deals no net damage at all; at least, it deals no damage on its own. This operation can easily be splashed into other decks and converts two clicks into the equivalent of seven: installing a card, and paying three clicks and three credits to advance it. This is an amazing economic gain, and a Mushin No Shin followed early in the game by a cheap piece of ice may be enough of a boost to help you score a Government Contracts (A Study in Static, 77) or Mandatory Upgrades (What Lies Ahead, 11).
As a result of this influx of new Jinteki cards, bluffing offers higher dividends. One wrong move by the runner will lead to disastrous consequences. Conversely, Jinteki’s rise means that expose effects and net damage prevention are worth their weight in platinum.
Additionally, three neutral Corp cards deserve special mention. The expansion introduces two versatile pieces of ice: Guard (Honor and Profit, 24), which nullifies the notorious Inside Job (Core Set, 21), and Rainbow (Honor and Profit, 25), a strong and efficient piece of ice that ends the run in the early-game and continues taxing the Runner later on. The third neutral card to call to attention at this point is Fast Track (Honor and Profit, 27), a dream card for fast Corp decks that will often be used to pull low-cost agendas, meaning the Runner will be under pressure to try and grab them from HQ before they’re installed and scored. All three of these cards permit higher Corp flexibility by freeing influence that would have otherwise been spent on out-of-faction cards, and that means the game’s Corps will come away with more total answers to the challenges before them.
Honor and Profit is about to prompt some huge shifts in the ways that players think about Android: Netrunner. Runners and corps are both getting shots of speed and aggression. Personal evolution or personal profit – which path will you choose?
Honor and Profit offers players a wealth of new strategies to explore, and it’s a great way for new players to delve deeper into the game’s central servers. Head to your local retailer or visit our webstore to pick up your copy today!
Based on the classic card game designed by Richard Garfield, Android: Netrunner The Card Game is a game for two players set in the dystopian future of Android. It pits monolothic megacorps against subversive netrunners in a high-stakes struggle for the control of valuable data.