The Stream, or stream as sometimes written, is the battleground for Phreaker Life.
The Stream thrives on energy. One could think of the stream as a null consciousness devoid of life. When Phreakers wish to engage one other in the stream, they do so by expending energy. Energy gives life to the stream when devices, objects, or characters enter. Devices, objects, or characters would enter or exit the stream based upon their energy rating or when losing in battle.
Setting up The Stream playing field
Following this text is an image of how cards are placed in the stream battlefield. There is some room for replacement of the cards when the table space is limited or none existent.
Resource cards is a player's deck of unseen and unplayed cards. The resource deck is placed in the lower right hand corner of the stream so it's easily accessible.
The cards visible to a Phreaker but not yet in play is called the stack. They are held in a phreaker's hand or on the table face down.
Energy collected by a Phreaker, in the form of playing cards, is stored at the bottom of the the stream. When energy is expended for any reason, to illustrate that the card's energy has been expended, the player expending energy turns the card sideways, upside down, or flip it face down. After the beginning of each player' turn, the expended energy card(s) are returned to their upright, face up position. For more details about how energy works, read the fine manual.
Device cards are placed into the stream at the top of the battlefield when energy is expended.
Object cards are placed into the stream covering part of the bottom of a device card when energy is expended.
Anhackronism cards are placed to the left of device cards when energy is expended. Multiple Anhackronism cards in the stream are placed directly below each other, opposite of the Bit Bucket and the Trash Heap.
The Trash Heap, named after when computer thingys are deleted and in combination with a priority queue, is where defeated cards or one-shot style cards are no longer in play are placed in a growing heap. Items in the Trash Heap may be returned to the stream, but that's a roadmap item for a future release.
The Bit Bucket is named after when things in computers disappear and really don't go any place that's recoverable. When devices, objects, or characters are sent to the Bit Bucket, they are there for the duration of the game. How do they enter the Bit Bucket, well, you'll have to play the game to find out.