Lately I've been quite simply obsessed with infinity.I've poured over the rules, watched every Beasts of War video on it, made terrain and assembled a bunch of miniatures. Why? Because it's simply awesome. It's action-packed, sophisticated and tactical. The game mechanics have a couple unique selling points, the most obvious is the turn-sequence. Unlike other games, you can act during your opponent's turn. It's based on a system of orders, done in your turn, and automatic reaction orders or AROs, done in your opponent's turn.
When it is your active turn, you have a pool of orders based on the number of models in your force. You use these orders to make actions with your miniatures. So for example, I have 3 models giving me a pool of 3 orders. I use these orders to activate my models, spending an order to do actions,, but there is no limit to how many orders I use for each model. So I could one action with each of my models, or make up to 3 actions with 1 of them, moving and shooting multiple times. While this may seem an unbalanced rules mechanic,potentially allowing a powerful model to move and shoot multiple times like Rambo, it is balanced by your opponent's ARO. ARO is an action that enemy models can take in response to your moves in your turn. As your soldiers open fire, the enemy reacts by ducking behind cover or returning fire. It means that running out in the open is dangerous and that you have to plan your moves carefully. You have to cover your advance. Leadership or willpower as it's called in Infinity is an important component to combat and your tactics. Each time a model is hit fire and survives, he must roll under his willpower or move back 2 inches to get out of sight. Models can even go prone, lying on the ground for better use of cover.This allows you to be tactical with your shooting, by forcing key enemies behind cover, you can create opportunities for your other models to get into better positions. Your troops support each other in this way. To make the game interesting, there are a host of special rules that give you different deployment options like combat jumps and other rules that give you other in game effects like camouflage and hacking enemy systems. There's even two kinds of weaponry, those that cause damage and those that disable machinery and computers, immobilizing soldiers in power armor. Onto the fluff. The game is set 175 years in the future at a time when mankind has populated the galaxy. Major powers are locked in an eternal conflict over resources, information and influence. The army that I've started off with is Yu Jing, a pan-Asian conglomerate power with advanced technologies married with ancient tradition. They can field a large array of heavy infantry, ninjas, and powerful battlesuits. Because of their adherence to the tradition of martial arts, they also boast the best close-combat units in the game, although is of little significance due to the game's focus of shooting. In general, the Yu Jing specialize in armored heavy infantry.
The Hac-Tao are their elite and embody much of the Yu Jing character; a heavy infantry unit, well-armed, with both close-combat and ranged weaponry, and possessing advanced technologies like thermal-optical camouflage. They also exemplify their main weakness, a vulnerability to electro-magnetic weaponry, hackers and sepsitors, that can disable, immobilize and even control their computerized power armor.
One of the things that draws me to Infinity is the sleek weapon designs and true-scale miniatures. Below you can see my first painted infinity model. This girl is a Zhanshi, a basic line trooper of Yu Jing. The sculpt is very detailed and certainly carries a bit of character. Her face, although I haven't photographed it well, is distinctly Asian. Such is the level of quality of Infinity models.
If this post sparks your interest, check out www.infinitythegame.com or you can even post questions in the comments section on this blog. The game has a surprising amount of support on-line and I've collected a few links that I recommend if you're interested in the game. The first iswww.toposolitario.es. This is a Spanish website with English text of course that is an excellent source of paper terrain for Infinity. Check out the Ikubes. These are great, colorful and free terrain pieces. You simply print the PDF, cut and fold the piece and you're done. I've taken it a step further, building a structure from foamcore and gift wrapping them with Topo's printed textures for a more durable terrain piece. The next site I'd like to share is the Infinity wiki: http://infinitythegame.wikispot.org/Home. Because the game's ruleset is free online, the Corvus Belli is able to share them through wiki. If you have an iPhone or iPad, the wiki is a great reference during games, allowing to find rules quickly with flipping through a book. If you are in the DC area, I am available on Wednesday nights for demo games at Dream Wizards or Games and Stuff in Glen Burnie. Just email me and we'll sort something out.