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Go to the Android: Netrunner page

Android: Netrunner

28 out of 32 gamers thought this was helpful

I come from a background in computers, computer games and card games like MTG and L5R. When I first saw net runner I was turned off because thought that it would be really hard to get into because I don’t have any particular interest in the Android universe. The rulebook was too long and the key words were too numerous. It was a bit intimidating but after finally taking that initial dive into the game I am glad that I did. Here is a little about my experience with net runner.
Netrunner does an amazing job of creating a unique experience for the player. Playing as either the corporation or the runner will give you a huge change in play experience. Furthermore, each faction inside of each role also plays differently. For example, I enjoyed my games as Weyland Consortium as I raked in the credits and over ran the runner and likewise I had a great time with the traces found in the NBN deck.
I also really enjoyed the art and layout of the game. My favorite art is on the Jinteki cards with its Japanese art feel complete with samurai looking Ice (neural Katana) and anime feel of the Japanese business man (Zaibatsu Loyalty) and the art on Akihiro Watanabe. The game overall had a great theme that made sense (after tackling the rulebook).
The most compelling thing about Netrunner is the replay value. After my first game I was pleasantly surprised at how eager I was to try again. It really sucked my in and now I am trying to get my own custom deck together. The depth is just right to be elusive enough to intrigue me while be simple enough for the general idea of the game to sink and hook me in rather quickly.
The biggest negative criticism I have though is related to that depth. I feel that it is a bit hard to understand and that explaining the game in simpler terms might appeal to more players for example, the runner has built in mechanics (runs) to search and access any of the corporations’ cards. His goal is to access a certain type of card called an agenda. A simple explanation like that could have helped me to get into the game easier. Instead, I spend a few games completely clueless to the basic mechanic of the game because it was clouded by the mountain of rules. I couldn’t see the forest for the trees. I think this could possibly be a marketing problem.
Another problem that compounded rules problem is the thematic naming of every part of the card game. Want to discard a card as the corporation? Instead put in in your archive. Want to talk about your opponent’s hand? You better learn the difference between HQ and grip. These terms make it a challenge to look up the rules and to decipher them, which admittedly happens a lot even now that I have a fair few number of games under my belt.
Finally, I felt that some of the core decks are a bit underpowered when compared to each other. For example, playing a game against NBN, I didn’t mind getting traced because that deck has very little that it can do to a tagged player. Furthermore Weyland Consortium has access to a total of 6 cards that access its identity trait. It feels so underpowered that I might as well be playing some other deck. I guess this can be good because it forces players to change their decks if they want to play seriously, but it can be frustrating for a first time player when they learn that their deck does nearly nothing against an opposing deck.

So in summary here are my main points:
+Unique Experience for each role and even each faction.
+Great art and theme.
+Amazing depth and replay value.

-A little hard to get into at first due to massive amounts of rules.
-Goofy names for common game parts like Archive instead of discard pile.
-Core set decks are mediocre.
Final Thoughts:
If you are looking for a fun game that will give you hours of entertainment, then I recommend Netrunner. Just like the hit series “Lost”, you will need to stick in there for the first little bit to get past the set-up stage, but once you do it is amazing. Best of luck and hope to play against YOU soon!

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