Tips for Stealth Ninja Hacker Build
Stealthy netrunning gets a lot better once you reach Tier 3 quickhacks, but you can’t use them until you have a Tier 3 cyberdeck. You can’t buy one until you reach level 20 (since cyberware tiers get unlocked at levels 10/20/30/40), but if you hoard enough crafting components you can upgrade a cyberdeck to one beforehand.
Tier 3 gets you e.g. a Sonic Shock that will cut off the target from communications, which means that you can quickly follow it up with a Short Circuit or Overheat or other single-target hack without initiating a trace.
Likewise, a tier 3 Memory Wipe temporarily stops that enemy from being able to even detect you, which sets them up for a grab/takedown; and it’s a ‘covert’ quickhack that does not trigger a trace.
If you don’t mind the noise, hacking objects into overloading and exploding also doesn’t initiate a trace.
Even at lower tiers, you can sometimes make use of e.g. Bait or Distract to lure targets into some location you can conveniently Takedown them. Ex: on a gig that involved rescuing a hostage from a dojo, I used Bait quite liberally to draw enemies away from allies to where I could snap their necks out of sight of any of their allies, and thus whittle down the potential witnesses along my intended path.
When it comes to dealing with groups, RAM recovery will be an issue. There are quite a few perks relating to discounting RAM costs a bit or improving RAM recovery, as well as combo potential (e.g. Queue Mastery halves the cost of the final quickhack in a full queue), and there’s a lot of cyberware that increases max RAM or improves RAM recovery. And then, of course, there’s Overdrive mode, which lets you use up health to keep quickhacking when out of RAM.
There’s also stealth-friendly cyberware, like lynx paw legs (reduced movement noise) and optical camo for reduced visibility.