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Friday, 26 August 2011

Infinity - why play anything else?

Friday, August 26, 2011

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Domaru Butai on the prowl...

After a couple of months without playing any Infinity me and my friend Anders thought it was time for some action! So the other day Anders brought his terrain boards out of storage, we plonked some terrain down (quite a lot of terrain actually) and put together a small 150pts force each. I've been using my Kuang Shi quite a lot in earlier battles to great effect, but I thought it'd be fun to try something else. So some Zhanshi, a Domaru, a couple of Celestial Guard, a Tiger Soldier and finally a Ninja as I hadn't used one before. Anders who plays Nomads had some Alguacile, a Zero, a Hellcat, an Interventor and a Mobile Brigada. I won't go into a blow by blow account, but just summon up the highlights.

We rolled up a couple of missions using Mission Roulette (looking forward to the upcoming campaign/scenario book from CB) and I got Blockade and Degrade, two fairly straightforward ones, while Anders got Triangulate and Collect that are a bit trickier.

  • Anders started his turn by dropping all of the Zero's mines, practically making his right flank unavailable for me. Earlier we've been fairly conservative with our mines, waiting for that "perfect opportunity" that usually never comes. I think this might be a better strategy.
  • In earlier games our play area has been fairly tight, about 80x100cm, but this time we had a full 120x120cm so weapon ranges mattered a lot more. This was really noticable when I air-dropped my HGM toting Tiger Soldier and he took down four enemies alone (five if you count the one he had to put down twice because of the medic!). Having +3 to hit at a range where a combi rifle has -6 means you rarely have to fear the return fire from most opponents.
  • Doctors (or Engineers) feels like they could be worthwile investments considering their cheap price. In this game Anders only managed to revive a single Alguacile, but if he had managed to take out my Tiger Soldier with his Hellcat he could very well have been able to revive most of the casualties thus far.
  • Flamethrowers are nasty! We had actually played it wrong in earlier games where we rolled for continued damage at the start of each turn (habit from Necromunda I guess) instead of right then and there when you get hit! This means that not only are flamethrowers an excellent counter to TO troops, but to multi-wound heavy infantry as well. My Domaru almost bought the farm when she charged the Mobile Brigada and got a face full of liquid fire! 
  • Close combat is not all that common in Infinity, but it's very rewarding when you actually do manage to get one of your melee monsters into base to base contact with something! My Domaru did survive the flames (barely) and then simply proceeded to cut the Mobile Brigada into tiny little pieces.
  • I had a TO infiltrator for the first time and I think I need to consider a bit more where best to place it in my next game. Now I just kind of plonked it down in the middle of the field.
  • The important thing in Infinity is actually hitting with your weapon. If you manage that there's a good chance you will do some serious damage, no matter if you fire with a rifle or a heavy machine gun. That being said, range can play a big factor (see above) and not having any heavy weapons of their own really crippled the Nomads. I think a HMG or a sniper might be the next purchase for Anders, this looks nice... 

At the end of the fourth turn the last remaining woman standing was the Interventor who decided to hoof it. It was a fairly uneven battle but nonetheless a lot of fun. Around the time my Tiger Soldier had gunned down his Hellcat Anders said kind of off handedly "Why look for any other game when we have Infinity? It has the best rule system by far." And I had been thinking pretty much the same thing as we played. Returning to Infinity after a few months of not playing it felt almost like coming home - it really is such a cool system!

Me and my friends have this thing about classifying miniature games after how 'headachey' they are. 40k is probably the most headachey for us, but any game can get headachey, no matter how much you actually like it. Except for Infinity. A lot of it naturally comes from the fact that you don't have all that many minis to worry about, but also from the amount of choices you have as a player. It's not only the active-reactive turn system that does it, nor is it the large selection of different actions available to you - these are really great, engaging mechanics, but what really makes Infinity unique is the entire system with Orders and the resource management that single mechanic brings. It also allows you to sometimes do some really cool cinematic maneuvers that you simply can't do in other games!

Hmmm... I could go on but you get the idea; Infinity is excellentacular! Of course I'll be playing other mini games but I think Infinity will be the go-to game that I'll always be up for. Now I really should finish my Aragoto and get started on my Sù-Jiàn...

6 kommentarer :

  1. Never played the game, but the minis look really nice, expensive though.

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  2. Well, yes and no. Yes, the individual models are fairly expensive but you need so few of them that the overall cost is lower than a lot of other miniature games out there. And since just adding a single unit can alter your strategy radically you'd be wise to expand slowly.

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  3. Infinity models are still cheaper than 40k's when you compare metal to metal/finecast. The fact that there isn't any plastic makes it seem more expensive when it really isn't, because like martin said, your buying less models.

    Sounds like an awesome game. I played my first game vs Nomads last night. A couple of highlights, my Hac Tao got hacked early on, then got hit by 3+ guided missiles...ouch, dead Hac Tao. My tiger soldier with HMG was a beast taking out a number of the Nomads, and yes flamethrowers rule. I got good use out of one on my Shang-Ji.

    The thing that I believe makes Infinity so great are the Order and ARO system and the challenge. It never gets boring. You constantly engaged and making tough decisions. Plus everyone like rolling tons of dice and guess what? the most basic weapon in the game has a burst of 3! The camo mechanic is so cool too! As are the mines! This zero in our game was using them very well. He was dropping them as AROs in his reactive turn, a great way to get them down without spending orders.

    I got pics and a write-up for Remote Presence after the weekend.

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  4. The dreaded guided missiles eh? Hehe! Not anything I've encountered yet as my friends still haven't expanded their armies beyond the inital purchases. I think I'll bring my Shang Ji to the table nex time. Love the models and want to see if I can make him work well.

    There are many things that put Infinity apart from the rest. The order mechanic and the active/reactive mechanic makes up the core, but then there are all the really cool little details (like camo!) that makes it even better. Like you say it never gets boring with the amount of choices you have available to you. And the fact that even a "lowly line trooper" can take down heavy infantry if used correctly is also a big draw for me and my group.

    Looking forward to the write-up! I need to take more pictures next time...

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  5. Infinity would be one of my favourite games. The constant decision-making puts an unsurpassed focus on the actual player rather than a stat line.

    In the early days, I would say Infinity was 90% tactics 10% army lists but as more and more models get introduced it is getting "Special Rules-itis" (Or "Warmachine Disease"/"Malifaux Rot") where there are so many special rules

    Now I reckon it is 60% tactics 40% remembering what your opponents minis can do

    Still a great game - when it gets a campaign system (I'd like to be able to "level up" soldiers etc but doubt it will happen) it will kick ahead further...

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  6. Hey evilleMonkeigh! Glad to see you in this neck of the woods! :)

    I agree that getting to know all (or at least most of) the special skill/equipment rules is the biggest hurdle for someone trying to get into Infinity. I don't think it's a really big problem if you're starting it from scratch with other people, so that you're all new. But I could see how getting into an established group could be tricky.

    However, it is a hurdle that you overcome over time. After a few games you will have formed a good grip of the abilities of your regular opponents and it will be more about tactics, as it should be.

    I certainly see where you're coming from though and I do think that Infinity is walking close to the edge. From what I hear of Malifaux it's a lot worse and almost incomprehensible for new players (if you use all expansions) and I really hope CB is wise enough to avoid that trap.

    Speaking of the campaign book, I do recall reading that there would be some kind of "experience" system in place. Somewhere...

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