It is set in a Blade Runner style (The word dystopian gets used a lot) future where Corporations are the real powers and Hackers known as Runners are their sworn enemies. It's a strict two player game where one side plays the Corporation and the other a Runner. Corporations are essentially defending their servers from attack by Runners and Runners are trying to gain access to those servers to steal information. The prime winning margin are things called Agendas. The Corporation installs them into their servers and tries to Advance them (Pay for them) and thus they can be scored. Conversely the Runner tries to steal them from the servers using programs that cut through the Corporations defences.
Still with me? The language gets a lot worse. After you've used a few clicks and spent some credits to rez your ICE or ICE breaker you feel like genuine nerd.
|A dystopian landscape|
When playing these more complex systems, getting a handle on what is a good move is quite impossible. Therefore we dove straight in placing down impressive looking cards and talking the talk. Our game play did speed up although a rule referral was never far away and irritatingly the rule book didn't supply a break down of the individual cards to aid comprehension.
|Action tracker - thats clicks to you|
In the end the result was a narrow win for me as the Runner. 7 Agenda points to 6, 7 being the winning margin. Chatting afterwards we agreed that the game didn't really click with us. We couldn't generate the tension that is supposed to be the best part of the game. I had a pretty powerful card and it seemed to rip through James' defences if I had enough money. We were left pondering whether we had played it entirely correctly.
We decided to give it another chance the next time we have a games evening because there is a cool game in there somewhere, we just need to see if we can find it.