Fantasy Flight Games just announced the upcoming release of Fear and Loathing, the fifth Data Pack in the Spin Cycle for Android: Netrunner!
The sixty new cards of Fear and Loathing (three copies each of twenty individual cards) translate this dichotomous existence to your games of Android: Netrunner. On the one hand, you have powerful and exploitative business entities like GRNDL, and on the other, you have the beaten down and fearful masses. But there are other categories, too, and while many people may be driven to silence, the game’s Runners and other spirited individuals, like the investigative reporter Tallie Perrault, are driven to action.
They Will Pay For Their Arrogance
The megacorps of Android: Netrunner have granted humanity access to the solar system and its resources, and as they have opened up that access, they have immediately set their sights upon the most efficient ways to attain those resources. Of course, many consider such practices exploitive and fear the impact they may have upon the planet’s ecosystem if allowed to continue unchecked.
Now, the access and abuses accelerate as Fear and Loathing introduces GRNDL to the game. While businesses like NBN and Jinteki invest heavily in their public images, the GRNDL division of a Weyland Consortium subcorporation could scarcely care less about PR messaging. Instead, they work at fracking, and work is good. While bleeding heart environmentalists and media staffers with axes to grind may try to slow the division’s work, GRNDL has plowed ahead, finding and refining all manner of resources. Accordingly, GRNDL offers Weyland players a huge early game advantage, starting with ten credits, though they come at the cost of one bad publicity.
Of course, GRNDL wouldn’t be such a successful investment for Weyland, nor would its practices be so controversial, if its exploitive practices had been limited to a single, historical abuse. It’s only because of recent environmental disasters that it merits continued attention from both Consortium executives and activist protestors, and the GRNDL Refinery serves as an example of how GRNDL can continue to help Weyland Consortium operate deep in the black.
But even as Fear and Loathing offers Corp players the opportunity to pursue riches and advance their agendas with a variety of new Gray Ops and Black Ops, it offers Runners new ways to make megacorps pay for their arrogance.
For starters, every Corp player knows better than to leave his servers protected by just a single piece of ice when he plays against a Criminal Runner. Criminals can simply bypass those layers of ice with the event, Inside Job. However, Fear and Loathing adds new tricks to the Criminal arsenal with a console that ensures that Corps seeking to rule by intimidation will suffer if they can’t fund the tech to back up all their posturing.
Meanwhile, any Runner can take advantage of the work that Tallie Perrault invests in exposing the different Gray Ops and Black Ops activities that Corps fund. Whenever the Corp player trashes a Gray Ops or Black Ops operation after resolving it, Tallie Perrault heaps a point of bad publicity on it. This makes her a highly visible Corporate target, and it’s not necessarily safe for the Runner to associate with her too often. Each time she assigns the Corp a point of bad publicity, she also gives the Runner a tag. This can feed right into the sort of tag-and-bag strategy that Weyland Consortium often employs, but the bad publicity Tallie Perrault heaps on Corps can also make the Runner’s job much, much easier…especially for the sort of Runners who might use the fruit of Tallie Perrault’s investigative efforts in more direct and morally ambiguous manners.
It’s naive to think of Runners as noble vigilantes who patrol the network for the good of the common people, and in fact many would be quite simply delighted to use the megacorps’ dirt against them. For such Runners, a well-timed bit of Blackmail can lead to an easy pay day.
It Doesn’t Hurt To Make Them Fear You
In Android: Netrunner, you don’t need your opponent to love you. But it doesn’t hurt to make them fear you. Wield the blunt force of GRNDL’s wealth and resources, or Blackmail the game’s megacorps. With Fear and Loathing, the Spin Cycle further amplifies its focus on bad publicity, tagging, and the various games within the game. Bluff your opponent, or force his hand. Run the network like you’re on a quest, work to save face, or completely ignore public opinion. Fear and Loathing gives you new tools to play the game the way you best enjoy.
Look for Fear and Loathing to arrive in the first quarter of 2014!
Release: 1st quarter 2014