Infinity: What I learned during my first game

Volunteers from the Caledonian Highlander Army work their way through the city streets to avoid a sniper.

Volunteers from the Caledonian Highlander Army work their way through the city streets to avoid a sniper.

I’ve been eyeballing Infinity for a couple years.

The game pushes my buttons: it’s futuristic sci-fi theme is fun, the tactics of the game are interesting and there are some really beautiful miniatures.

I finally picked up some miniatures, I’ve begun painting them and last night I played my first-ever game.

It was a blast.

I learned the game. I met some really nice people. I also got obliterated on the table. But it was fun.

Our FLGS is hosting an escalation league designed to help you learn the game and build (and paint) an army. Early weeks have small armies and limited rules, but they increase in size and scope until we’ll be playing full-fledged games and missions (with secret objectives) in a couple months.

For this game, we fielded a 120 point army. My opponent played Haqqislam and I fielded my Caledonian Highlander Army.

I fielded six miniatures: Three volunteers, a Highlander Grey Rifle, an SAS and a Wulver.

Volunteers are basically cannon fodder. The Highlander can throw smoke grenades and do some battlefield control. The SAS is an infiltrator with badass close combat skills. And the Wulver – a half-dog, half-man – is a badass with a sword, rifles, grenades and some pretty impressive special skills.

My opponent deployed two of his five models on rooftops, which gave me a bit of a disadvantage. I concentrated my volunteers together and sent the Highlander with the SAS. Then the Wulver was off on his own.

My attempt at strategy was to have the volunteers hold down the middle of the board, the Wulver the left of the board and use the Highlander and the SAS to infiltrate to the right side.

The SAS has an infiltration skill, which meant he could deploy halfway across the board. He was also camouflaged. Several attempts to detect him and shoot at him were ineffective.

After a few moves, the Highlander tossed a smoke grenade to obscure the camo’d SAS even further. It allowed him to run around the back of a building undetected, climb up and sneak attack one of my opponent’s models occupying a rooftop spot.

It was awesome.

Well, it felt like a clever move until my opponent’s turn when one of his models just destroyed him. Should have thought of that…

My Highlander exchanged fire with my opponent’s remaining sniper and died.

My volunteers tried to move up the center, but they caught the eye of my opponent’s one camo’d model (stupid me… I didn’t see the marker on the table) and they were destroyed as well.

This Wulver holds the high ground. For now.

This Wulver holds the high ground. For now.

Then came my Wulver. Bless him.

Running with a T2 rifle (it does extra damage) and grenades, he was the best model on my side.

First, he exchanged fire, dodged and ran from one enemy. He tossed a grenade at a sniper. He dodged under a bridge, just out of the sniper’s sight. Then he ran close, hopped a building and shot the sniper from behind.

This is when my opponent, a more experienced Infinity player than I, jokingly accused me of having played before.

I hadn’t. Honest.

At this point, I had the high ground. It was nice, but the Wulver was also surrounded. He took down one of my opponent’s models, but in doing so, he was shot in the back by another.

I lost, but it was a lot of fun.

So what did I learn about Infinity?

The rules. This is a game you have to play to learn. The first round, my opponent and I had to constantly look up rules. And we screwed up a lot. By the end, I had it down and I played like I knew how.

You don’t need to drop an entire paycheck to to field 127 minis to play your first game as you may in other super popular games (looking at you, 40k). And a single battle doesn’t last hours. You can certainly spend a lot on Infinity models, but you’ll probably field 10 to 15 at the most, and games also last an hour (but probably less).

Some strategy. I learned how to drop a smoke grenade in just the right spot and have a model in camouflage dart through undetected. I learned how line of fire works and how to skirt it. I also learned when it’s a good idea to have your model be detected.

The escalation league format is pretty cool. My first game was easy rules, small army. Next time will be a little bigger and the next even bigger. I’ll learn how to play at smaller levels before I dive into a full-on 300 point game. Plus I’ll be encouraged to paint more.

It’s been said before, but in Infinity, it’s always your turn. You need to be really aware and react during your opponent’s turn, so you also need to leave your team in a good position at the end of your own turn. If not, you’ll get smoked.

I need to paint. Some of us had painted models, but neither I nor my opponent had a full army painted. Some of my models are primed, others are half painted. Some are painted and I need to repaint them. But I would love to have a good-looking army for next session.

I need some terrain. We had three tables full of terrain: Some used cardboard terrain from Infinity boxed sets and some was from Shark Mounted Lasers. I brought exactly none. I’d like to have a few pieces even if it’s hand-made foamboard stuff.

 

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