Android: Netrunner Draft Play

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Draft play for Android: Netrunner has arrived!

Android: Netrunner Draft Starters and Draft Boosters allow you and your friends to test your skills in an exciting, alternative draft play format.

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What is Draft Play?

Many players associate “Draft” play with collectible (i.e. blind-purchase) card games rather than Living Card Games® like Android: Netrunner. While playing a typical draft game, all players contribute an equal number of packs to a random pool. Once the random pool is compiled, players select the cards they’ll use to build their decks.

In a typical draft, players divide into groups and open packs of cards. Each player drafts one card from a pack, then passes the pack to another player. Every pack is passed around, with players selecting cards from what they are given. After everyone is done drafting cards, each player possesses a small collection of cards to build a deck, before competing against other players that are part of your draft.

Now, draft play can introduce its unique challenges to Android: Netrunner, forcing you to select cards one at a time without full knowledge of the available card pool. Accordingly, you’ll develop strategies for how to approach the draft. As you develop new deck-building strategies, you’ll stretch and adapt to the format’s challenges as you and your friends test your mettle against each other with draft-built decks.

How Does Draft Play Affect the LCG® Model?

Android: Netrunner is a Living Card Game (LCG). This format offers dynamic, expanding, and constantly evolving game play, and its fixed distribution allows you to focus on improving your skills, rather than chasing rare cards. We love our LCG model. We believe in its transparency, we believe in the player benefit it provides, and it works. Over the years, the LCG model has flourished and grown all over the world, and we are committed to it!

However, despite its success and increasing player base, the LCG model used by Android: Netrunner has prohibited players from fully enjoying draft play… until now.

In early 2013, however, FFG invested in its own cutting-edge printing facility. This digital printing and manufacturing technology allowed us to execute a number of projects and products, and one of the most exciting is the production of Draft Packs for Android: Netrunner.

Using a custom algorithm for randomization, each Android: Netrunner Draft Pack is individually compiled from a draft pool of hundreds of LCG cards and then printed and distributed as an individually unique pack ready for use in “Draft” play.

Both the random selection algorithm and the associated card pool have been carefully designed and considered by FFG’s LCG team to engender a truly dynamic, intriguing, and rewarding draft experience.

These new Draft Packs and the draft format they support are in no way meant to replace the LCG model. Instead, they allow you to experience the bluffs and high-stakes cyberstruggles of Android: Netrunner in an additional, alternative format of play… one that may be particularly attractive to new or casual players.

What Do I Need to Play?

If you want to start an Android: Netrunner draft with your friends, each player will need to bring three products: a fixed Draft Starter and two randomized Draft Packs, one each for Corp and Runner. All must match the draft’s set, which identifies a select number of cards drawn from the full Android: Netrunner LCG card pool and which are randomized for draft play.

For example, the Cyber War draft set is a selection of 169 cards from Android: Netrunner, and in an Cyber War draft, each player must bring one fixed, sixteen-card Cyber War Draft Starter; one randomized, forty-card Cyber War Corp Draft Pack; and one randomized, forty-card Cyber War Runner Draft Pack.

Draft Starters: Each Draft Starter is a fixed collection of necessary cards that can be reused in any number of drafts, so you only need to purchase this item once before drafting from the same draft set. Draft Starters contain rules for draft play, identity cards, agendas, some important economy cards, and a few utilitarian icebreakers.

These cards are clearly distinguished from the larger Android: Netrunner LCG card pool and the cards in the set’s Draft Packs, allowing you to collect them after your games and prepare for a new draft. No matter how many drafts you play using a given set, you’ll only ever need one Draft Starter.

All draft cards are clearly identified by a new icon, and starter pack cards are further distinguished from draft cards by color.

Draft Packs: At the heart of every Android: Netrunner draft format are its randomized Draft Packs for both Corp and Runner, each of which is an unique collection of forty cards that have been carefully compiled from a larger, pre-defined card pool.


Will There Be Cards Exclusive to Draft Play?

A select few draft cards will be marked “draft format only.” These cards are designed to help players navigate the unique challenges of draft play, and they are never legal outside of the draft play format.

For example, the identity card, The Shadow, is unique the to Cyber War Draft Starter and bears the text, “Draft format only.” The Shadow is legal within the Cyber War draft format, but it is not legal within any other format.

When Do Draft Cards Become Legal for Tournament Play?

Cards marked “draft format only” are never legal for play in standard tournaments. All other cards from Android: Netrunner Draft Starters and Draft Packs are legal in standard tournament play as soon as they are tournament legal and released within the standard LCG format.

However, our in-house manufacturing may result in slight variations in production color and card-stock, so players using draft cards in tournaments must sleeve their cards with opaque or art sleeves.

Plug in to the Next Frontier

How fast can you go from zero to zetabytes? Compile your cards and jack into draft play for Android: Netrunner The Card Game. Draft Starters and Draft Packs are now available via FFG’s in-house manufacturing!



Keep checking this space for more information about Android: Netrunner Draft Play, including the rules.