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Faustian bargains and sharp objects do not mix

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DGM    14

I've been playing on expert and finding it too easy so I decide it's time to step up to expert plus.  I randomize and get Draco and Derek for my agents.  Not bad.  I also get Faust and Rapier for my programs.  Umm...  not good.  But what the hell, I figure I'll roll with it.  

After all, how bad could it be?

Turn 1: 2-point Blowfish.
Turn 2: 5-turn Modulate.
Turn 3: 5-point Siphon.

Bear in mind that I've already stunned two guards and shot a third (Draco got hacking), so I'm already an alarm-level-and-change ahead of where I should be.  I've done a grand total of one hack (taking down a camera) and Rapier already costs 4 to use.  At this point I'm staring at the screen and seriously considering a restart because Murphy seems to have turned His baleful eye upon me.  But I'm so intrigued to see how screwed up this can get that I decide to take notes instead.

Not having found anything else to hack yet I spend 16 power to take 3 safes before anything else goes wrong, and then:

Turn 6: Rubiks.
Turn 9: Fractal.
Turn 12: another Rubiks.

I've managed to get the site list but the firewalls are ridiculous and Rapier is spending my power like politicians spend my money.  I figure I can hack one more thing if I'm lucky.  Forging ahead I find: a nanofab, the last two safes, a camera I can't get around and can't afford to hack (because why not) and...

A secondary server.  Oh please, whatever dark, unholy Gods have decided to "bless" this run, I beseech thee: let it have a breaker program.

I take 3 of the 4 firewalls off with what power I have, then Derek waits for Faust to provide while Draco pushes past the camera and looks for the exit.  Which turns out to be on the other side of 4 more unavoidable cameras.  Oh, hi there Alarm 6!  How's the kids?

Would you believe I'm actually grateful to find Brimstone in the server?  It's not a good program and it seems odd to call something with that name a Godsend, but for this run it kind of is.

Derek makes his contribution to Shopcat's catnip fund and hoofs it for the exit, but just before we get out:

Turn 16: another Fractal.  Because apparantly Murphy feels like rubbing salt in the wound.


Admittadly I came out of it much better than I expected given that brutal start.  I got everything in the mission but two safes and a nanofab.  Brimstone will help when Rapier gets too expensive or Faust gets too trigger-happy.  Also, Monster coughed up what is probably the best item he could have right now: a hand cannon for Draco.  And finally, I can take two more missions on day 1 and the second will be at K&O (hacked turrets make Draco cheap to feed).

But still, that was 7 daemons across 16 turns.  And not only is that more than twice the usual rate but every single one of them seemed chosen to make working with Rapier more difficult.  Yikes.

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