Neal's Last Words
by Byron "Neal" Massey
Don't Drink and Run
It was great to have Scott Dickie, the director of the World Domination
online tournament, come out to the West Coast (on vacation). He
played in the WotC tournament I mentioned in last week's column
("What's Netrunner?"). From there, he came to my hometown
for a beach vacation before heading back to the old homestead in
Minnesota (go Vikings!).
I didn't get a chance to play against Scott in the tournament,
but we had a lot of fun playing Netrunner one evening with my brother
and a longtime friend (and genius) Charles Gordon. Charles has the
highest skill/experience ratio of anyone I have ever played with
(including people like Holger Janssen, Nat Johnson, Frisco Del Rosario,
and Dennis Duncan).
"...I am seriously thinking about hosting a meatspace Invitational
Best-of-the-Best World Championship."
I played a couple of sealed deck matches with Scott, I think I
won a single game out of four. We then proceeded to a four-player
game. We used the simplest multi-player rules possible. Each player
had either a Corp or Runner deck, and we sat in a circle that alternated
Corp and Runner. A Corp went first and we just went around the circle
taking turns until someone scored seven points. Runners could run
wherever they wanted (although it was illegal for the first Runner
to run on the second Corp, who had not yet had a turn, the first
time around). The game continued if one Runner was flatlined. Tags
were shared, all exposed cards were exposed to both Runners, and
Corps could play Tagging/Tracing Operations even if the Runner they
attempted to trace ran on the other Corp in their previous turn.
We had a great time and were unable to detect any imbalances created
by these very simple rules. The two games had a Corp winner and
a Runner winner.
There were a few rules changes I would recommend. A tag should
be the property of a single Corp. Cards that are exposed but not
rezzed should only be showed to the Runner that exposes them. A
flatline should end the game with the killing Corp as victor. Like
Monoply, Corps and Runners should be able to sell information and
tags for whatever price the market will bear, but only for bits,
not cards, actions, etc. A purchased tag should not be lost to the
Corp that sells it, only gained by the Corp that buys it. Exposed
cards should be marked as such without actually being turned over.
The Runner that exposes them should be able to look at cards whenever
After the multi-match was over, Scott and I settled down for some
constructed-deck action. Unfortunately, he crushed me. I could blame
it on the five bottles of beer I drank (I hardly ever drink, that
might have been a record for me). I could blame it on bad luck.
The truth is, Scott is a good player and he has been training with
the Fort Collins, Colorado duo of David Bartholow and World Champion
So, it was a great night of Netrunner but I didn't accomplish any
noteworthy personal successes. I forgot to bring the Krash stack
I listed last week, so I didn't even get a chance to further test
it. Maybe the highlight of the evening for me was Scott's Netrunner-Widow-in-Training,
Christa (sp?) remaining remarkably pleasant while being ignored
all evening. Count your lucky stars, Scott...
Some of you may know that I recently returned from a vacation halfway
around in the world in Bali, Indonesia. After seeing Skip Pickle's
new version of the tournament rules and playing with Scott, I am
seriously thinking about hosting a meatspace Invitational Best-of-the-Best
World Championship. The plan is to get airfares as cheap as the
ones I got to Bali, and fly in the best players from around the
world for a week of private, small group play to determine sealed
and constructed world champions.
It probably won't happen soon but I will be sending out informational
email to top players. If you have credentials that you feel would
qualify you for this event, send me email so I can put you on the
list. The plan right now is to get the top twelve players, but that
It's been a month since I wrote anything about a specific card,
so I will find time this week to put out a special column about
an extremely hard-to-find rare, Pavit Bharat.
The deadline is still two days away, but the voting on Mulligans
seems to be a lock. The tally at this time is 17-1 with "NO"
in the lead. send in a vote if you think you can change these early
Daffy suggests that Blink would be a nice match for Evil Twin.
I agree. For other ideas about Evil Twin, see Evil Indeed.
See you in Wilderspace,