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Frisco Del Rosario writes about chess960, women's basketball, minor league baseball, unsupported collectible card games, lettering in comic books, and Golden Age movies

Dogpoo is South Park: Phone Destroyer’s Tycho Extension 12/24/2017

Days ago, I talked about the old NetRunner card Tycho Extension, which fueled a powerful deck so simple that a beginner could (and did) win a tournament with it.
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Tycho Extension took advantage of some NetRunner arithmetic. NetRunner was a race to seven points, while Tycho awarded four. That meant scoring the first Tycho enabled the player to sell one superfluous point in order to make the second, winning Tycho automatic.

Most of the good cards in the Tycho class had the same difficulty as Tycho, but were worth just three points. However, those cards conferred special abilities when scored, while Tycho had no special ability.

The joke was: “Tycho doesn’t need a special ability. Its fourth agenda point is its ‘special ability’.”

Dogpoo is the South Park: Phone Destroyer answer to Tycho Extension.

Dogpoo doesn’t have a special ability. It just deals huge damage, 80 points or more.

Dogpoo fits into SPPD decks the same way Tycho Extension fit in NR decks. Their special ability of having no special ability also makes them compact — if one wanted to play with 20 points in a NR deck, one could go with seven 3-pointers or five Tychos, and give the two free card slots to something else. Instead of two fighters that deal 40 damage, SPPD players play one Dogpoo and have another option.
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The top SPPD players sneer about Dogpoo the same way NR experts did Tycho. NR players used to say “live by the Tycho, die by the Tycho” (because while the Tycho player only had to score two Tychos, his opponent only had to steal two). SPPD experts believe Dogpoo moves too slowly to be useful at high levels —once I was in position to resign, but instead of standing still, I experimented by casting Dogpoo behind new kid, then Hyperdrive. Even a Hyperdriven Dogpoo stumbles along.

Next time I play NetRunner, I’ll stick to my opinion that Tycho Extension is crap, but call it dogshit instead.

I own the original art to Tycho Extension. Even if we hate the card for its training-wheel-simplicity, it’s a NR icon for the same reason, and moonscapes are just cool. When NetRunner the game was at death’s door, there wasn’t much to do as an enthusiast — I’d written every idea I ever had, and traveled to Virginia and The Netherlands just to play; buying original art was one of the last kicks to get from that game. The artist gave it to me for 1/5 his asking price — he could tell I was one of the few people who’d really like hanging it on a wall.

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