Today we have a guest post from previous contributor Chris, this time sharing with us an awesome Infinity battle report. Chris has previously written about how great Infinity is and why he started playing. If you are interested, check out his previous post to get an overview on how Infinity works as a game before reading his battle report. Even if you don't know Infinity, Chris does a great job in the report of explaining what certain actions do and how the game plays, so be sure to check it out!
Over to Chris.
Assault on SYGTIR-2 - an Infinity battle report
G'day dear readers of St. Andrews Wargaming!
Chris here, the avid reader turned guest writer that offered you a glimpse into the world of Infinity in fall last year if you remember (http://standwargaming.blogspot.de/2016/09/guest-post-infinite-patience-or-long.html). I'm mighty pleased to be able to contribute another small piece to this magnificent blog and, fittingly, this will be about Infinity as well.
Before we get to the actual battle report I want to give you some very basic information about Infinity and how it works. If you're already familiar with the game, feel free to skip this bit.
Infinity is a skirmish game set in the year 2200 (the rules are free to download by the way). The various factions on Earth have merged into different constellations. For example, the state empire of Yu Jing that comprises most of the Asian nations, or PanOceania that includes, well, all the rest of the world. Of course, the various factions are still squabbling as they are today, but there's no open warfare going on, only mostly clandestine work. So far humans have made contact with 2 alien races - the Tohaa, which are seemingly benevolent, and the Combined Army, which seeks to conquer all races they encounter. A few new planets have been settled, too, and we have researched the technology of "jump gates" to facilitate travelling large distances. One such jump gate is the "Wotan Gate" which basically connects two planets, one being Paradiso, and the other being Svarlaheima. Paradiso is already being attacked by the scout forces of the Combined Army, which now try to make a push through the Wotan Gate.
Gameplay-wise, an Infinity game has 3 turns, similar to Warhammer 40K in the way that the players alternate moving and shooting with their respective armies. One of the interesting differences is that there's always an active player (whose turn it is) and a reactive player. When the active player moves or shoots with a unit, the reactive player gets to shoot back (but less powerful than in his active turn), or dodge with his models. A mechanic that makes Infinity games quite engaging, as there's almost no downtime.
The second big difference in the game play mechanics, and one that took some time getting used to, is that in Infinity you can move and shoot with a unit several times in your turn, by consuming "orders". Orders are supplied by each of your models in your army, one order for each model. This is balanced out by the fact that even expensive elite units are still relatively fragile, so unless something goes really wrong, there won't be a single unit Rambo-ing through the whole opposing army. This does open up a world of tactical opportunities though, as you can freely spend your orders on several models or just one troop model in any order you wish.
So a few months ago, Corvus Belli, the Spanish manufacturer of Infinity, started a global summer campaign ("Strikezone: Wotan") with 3 stages that is now complete. In this campaign, the various factions got to fight over strategic locations in the space around the Wotan Gate, for instance, a space station or various orbital defense platforms, and the results will advance the storyline of the game. This is one of the battles I played during this campaign, and the most memorable for me.
Disclaimer: The faction I play in this mission, called the Acontecimento Shock Army (with descendants hailing mostly from South America, India and the Philippines), I chose to play because I wanted to avoid a mirror match. It is my second faction, and this is my second game with them. That's why none of my models are painted and I apologize. Have a picture of my primary faction, the Combined Army, instead:
The mission: Capture & Control.
Capture & Control works basically like Emperors Will: 2 objectives are set up in each deployment zone, only here the exact placement is defined within the mission rules. In this mission there are also 2 consoles that can be activated for additional victory points. Each Infinity mission also includes 1 or 2 so called "Classified Objectives", which are like Maelstrom Cards, but unknown to your opponent until they're accomplished (this mission featured one). What's cool about Infinity is that you can substitute one of your Classified Objectives by "Securing" the enemy's "High-Value Target", which is a civilian that cannot be targeted and doesn’t cost points or can do anything but stand there. You secure the enemy HVT by having one of your models within 8" of it at the end of the game, and at the same time have no hostile models within 8” of your own HVT.
The Yu Jing HVT model
Combined Army (my opponent)
Charontid HMG MSV3- a heavily armed and armored alien beast, infused with part of the conscience of the alien "overmind" (for lack of a better term). This one is armed with a HMG and has a Multi-Spectral-Visor, allowing it to see through smoke and ignore other modifiers to hit except cover (camouflage for instance).
2x Ikadron Remotes (Light Flamethrower)- a drone/robot for deployment zone defense
Shrouded (Hacker)- an infiltrating skirmisher
Shrouded (Minelayer)- another infiltrating skirmisher
2x Daturazi Witch Soldier (Smoke Grenades, Chain Rifle)- crazed close combat specialists with large shotgun-like guns with short range but a big template
Q-Drone Remote (Plasma Rifle)- an automated sentry turret
Aswang (Spitfire)- another kind of skirmisher with something like a submachine gun
Speculo Killer (Boarding Shotgun & Monofilament Weapon)- an "Impersonator", think of it like a Callidus Assassin
Obsidon Medchanoid- an artificial creature capable of performing both Doctor and Engineer duties.
Acontecimento Shock Army (me)
Regular (Lt.) - Júlia Tavarez, commanding officer
Regular (Hacker)- Fernanda Amorim
TechBee (Flash Pulse)- Emily Williams - a unit that remotely supports all friendly Engineers. A Flash Pulse is something like a better laser pointer, able to stun enemies.
Naga KHD - Cobalt-11- an infiltrating skirmisher
Naga KHD - Cobalt-12- another infiltrating skirmisher
Tikbalang (HMG, mines and a heavy flamethrower)- a "Tactically Armored Gear" or TAG, which is kind of small mecha / robot, remotely controlled by an operator off-site.
Machinist- an Engineer
Regular (Sniper Rifle)
2x Regulars (Combi Rifle)
Bulleteer Remote (Spitfire)- an automated sentry turret with something like a flickerfield, making it very hard to hit
Peacemaker (Heavy Shotgun)- an automated sentry turret that can infiltrate]
GNN NEWS FLASH - Latest Headlines
+++ SYGTIR-1 beset by EI forces +++
+++ Alien combatants briefly in control of orbital station +++
+++ PanO command overwhelmed? +++
+++ Aliens supported by Nomad terrorists? +++
"Put that thing away, Amorim. Nothing but merda on it anyway."
"Sorry Ma'am, just checking if they bother to report our little scrap with the frogs at SYGTIR-1, too, or if it's just the bad news that make it on the channels."
"Yeah, you can do that later when we're finished here. Oi galera [gang], you know the drill - from now on we switch to network silence until we're on site. Intel says we have suspected sapo [toad] activity near one of the control rooms of SYGTIR-2, so we're checking the place out for them. If it's nothing we buckle down nice and comfy and wait for further orders, if anything smells funny we put some holes in them and ask questions later. The area is being evacuated as we speak so there shouldn't be any civvies around unless they have a death wish. If you see any stragglers try not to shoot them but as always personal safety comes first. I don't need to remind you of that Speculo that tried to poke some holes into our Tik a few hours ago. We also have 2 Aleph operatives doing sweeps of the area so we should know more soon."
Ikadrons cover flanks
Shrouded minelayer next to the left console
Shrouded hacker fairly central
Charontid fairly central, flanked by Daturazis
Doc Worm further back
Aswang on the left flank, Q-drone, too.
Deployment Combined Army
Acontecimento Shock Army (left to right)
Machinist prone next to Bulleteer
Regular Minelayer and mine to trap Speculo (both the last models to deploy)
TechBee & Regular Lt.
Peacemaker & Auxbot
2 Regulars (prone)
Each of the Nagas close to a console.
Deployment Acontecimento Shock Army
Turn 1 - Combined Army
"Tavarez here, our Aleph friends just told me we have someone creeping up right to our doorstep, possibly a hacker, be ready to hard reset ..."
Eager to make combat the Daturazi Witch-soldiers move up first and cover their advance with smoke. Then predicatably the monstrous Charontid moves into action, killing in short order the Regular Sniper and the Peacemaker, then proceeds to put 2 wounds on the Tikbalang which thinks better of the exchange and ducks into cover. With all ARO (AROs, or “Automatic Reaction Orders” are the declarations of the reactive players’ action, e.g. shoot back or dodge in most cases) pieces on my right flank and center removed a camo token activates, moves up and reveals to be a Shrouded Hacker. The alien promptly tries to posess the Tikbalang but gets his brain fried by my alert Regular Hacker, while the Tikbalang resets successfully (in Infinity there’s also hacking rules which is pretty cool. Here the enemy hacker tries to take over my big robot, but thankfully fails and is killed by my own hacker).
"Shit, that's one of those creepy EI robots... nossa, é o cão chupando manga... [literally translated: it's ugly like a dog/the devil sucking on a mango]"
Get your filthy alien hands off our robot!
End of Turn 1 Combined Army. The red markers are unconscious markers.
Turn 1 - Acontecimento Shock Army
"Hostile HI locked down, I repeat, I got the sucker, take him down!" "I hear you Amorim, Gear moving up to engage"
With some damage taken but not too badly mauled I prepare to retaliate. My Regular link moves up to take ground and help take care of the Charontid. The Hacker manages to immobilize the enemy, after which my Tikbalang dares to poke it's head out again. I get some hits in with the HMG but they're all saved and the Charontid even resets successfully (units that are immobilized through hacking can reset their systems to clear the effect). Great. With my last order I switch the Tikbalang to Suppressive Fire.
"Not a scratch, enemy commander fully operational. Brace yourselves."
Above you can see a wound marker (the red one) and 2 dropped smoke grenades. The others are order markers so we know how many have been spent on what model.
Turn 2 - Combined Army
"Witch-Soldier incoming, take cover, take cover!"
After my unsuccessful attempt at neutralizing the Charontid I get ready for a mauling. The Daturazi move up and smoke/chain-rifle, with one Regular going down. Then the Charontid activates and hoses my Tikbalang down once again. This time at least I get a critical hit through (those may not be saved). My hacking ARO is unsuccessul however, and draws the ire of the alien creature/machine. One of the Daturazi moves up to chain-rifle again, this time all remaining members of the Regulars go down, as well as the Witch-Soldier to a Combi Rifle ARO. The Charontid then destroys the Tikbalang. My mind says "game over", and then "at least try not to lose 10:0.". The Charontid now advances unmolested toward my (Emperors Will) objective, happily humming some merry alien tune no doubt. Then suddenly a painfully bright and blinding light hits the creature, temporarily stunning it. Small good it will do with another turn to go and nothing but the TechBee and her Flash Pulse between a hulking alien and my objective, but I'm grasping for every straw here.
"I've taken heavy fire, there's smoke and hydraulics everywhere and my suit just went on emergency shutdown protocols - you're on your own!"
More unconscious markers and the advanced Charontid next to the yellow container with a “stunned” marker.
Turn 2 - Acontecimento Shock Army
"Commander down, commander down!! We need to stop that fucking bastard NOW!"
Yes, one of the unconscious Regulars was my Lieutenant (those are important, without them every unit can only use its own order). Like I said, mentally I'm in the "at least don't lose this 10:0" area at this point. So I move one of my Nagas toward the unprotected console of the two and claim it (for a victory point). Nothing else to do with my 4 or 5 irregular orders sadly.
"This is Aleph operative Cobalt-12, moving in to secure objective."
Turn 3 - Combined Army
"Alright boys and girls, it's looking bad, but we've seen worse. We have back-up on the way so let's hold them off for just a little bit longer"
The remaining Daturazi moves and throws smoke. The Charontid activates, moves and splits fire between the Naga that just claimed the console and the TechBee. The Naga crits (yay!), then the Charontid also crits (boo!). The TechBee hits with her Flash Pulse while the Charontid misses her. And then the alien construct fails its armor roll. At this point I (trying my best not to look too happy) remind my opponent that picking up the (Emperors Will) objective is an "attack". And stunned models cannot make attacks. Is there actually a sliver of hope for a draw on the horizon?
Slightly panicky the alien commander instructs his unconscious Shrouded Hacker to use his auto-medkit, in full view of the Naga that still crouches next to the console. Not sure if he was busy checking out St. Andrews Wargaming on his phone or playing the latest MMO or something, but either way he misses, and the Shrouded gets back up. Uh oh. The Shrouded then moves, exchanges fire with the Naga unsuccessfully, then moves again and shoots at the valiant TechBee - my last short-skirted bastion of humanity standing defiant in the face of the alien onslaught. She hits, as does the Shrouded. But she hits better and wins the exchange. The Shrouded fails his save and is stunned (as is my opponent, by the way). I'm pretty sure the ensuing alien cries of rage and dismay could be heard over at SIGTYR-1 (the weapon platform we’re fighting on), too. In a last spiteful hail mary attempt the Speculo Killer finally activates, taking a shot at the Bulleteer drone to hit both the drone and the Machinist behind it, but misses thanks to its Optical Disruption Device and is then blown to ribbons by the exploding mine right next to it.
"TechBee reporting Flash Pulse hits on 2 targets"
Brazilian standoff - the TechBee with her Flash Pulse (5 pts) vs the hulking Charontid with its HMG (60+ pts).
Turn 3 - Acontecimento Shock Army
"Cobalt-11 reporting enemy high-value target in range for pick-up, requesting cover fire to approach."
We realize that at this point I'm already leading by 1 point, but as this is only my second game with SAA I want to get some more practice in and I also think I might have a shot at securing the enemy HVT. My second Naga activates for the first time, moves up, dodges both an exploding mine and a shot by a Shrouded minelayer. So far so good. I then move up the Bulleteer drone and riddle the Shrouded with holes, unfortunately rather than dodge or shoot the enemy boldly places another mine. Hmmm OK. The trusty drone moves up again, takes the mine to the robotic face and drives a suddenly appearing Spitfire Aswang back somewhat, clearing the way for the Naga to advance. My Naga then dodges another Spitfire bullet and lifts me to a highly unexpected win thanks to "Secure HVT". What. A. Game.
"They're pulling back! Hey sapo, you've got enough already?! ... I think I'm gonna puke now."
My Naga securing the hostile HVT
Addendum: It is my pleasure and honor to announce that TechBee Emily Williams was awarded the PanOcianian Silver Cross for exceptional bravery and has been promoted to Taifeiro-Mor [senior specialist] with immediate effect.
TechBee Emily Williams proudly representing her unit on the cover of "GEARS" PanO armed forces magazine
Unit pictures, PanOceania Logo and TechBee Logo by Corvus Belli
TechBee "magazine cover" picture by Crystal Graziano @deviantart.com
Thank you for reading and if you ever fancy having a closer look at Infinity there’s video batreps on Youtube as well as the complete rulebook available online for free. Until next time!
Thanks to Chris for taking the time to write up the report and send it to me! I hope you all enjoyed it. If you did, let Chris know in the comments below and we can hopefully convince him to do a few more in the future!- Mike.