Symmetric Boards and Keyholes, an Experiment

We tried an interesting experiment for this game, building a completely symmetrical board of geometric shapes. We had two concentric square rings, the outer one broken at the midpoint of each side, the inner one broken at the corners. Even the scatter terrain setup was as symmetric as we could get it. Standard practice is to encourage slight or even pronounced asymmetry in board setup to present a choice post-Lt roll off, but some of our local players were discussing the concentric ring table setup and we wanted to give it a go. We kept the board short, which turned out to be a bit of a problem for me later.

Overview

  • Mission: Quadrant Control
  • ForcesNomads versus Hassassin Bahram (300)
  • Deploy First: Nomads
  • First Turn: Nomads

I hadn’t really built a list for Quadrant Control, but had a few lists lying around from various ITS mission practice games and just rolled a D6 to select one. I got a list that I had built for the Armory, which turned out to be a real challenge to pilot in this game!

The Armory


GROUP 1 | 9

INTRUDER Lieutenant Combi Rifle + Light Flamethrower, Grenades / Pistol, CCW. (0 | 35)
WILDCAT Boarding Shotgun, Stun Grenades, Deployable Repeater / Pistol, Knife. (0 | 17)
WILDCAT Hacker (Assault Hacking Device) Combi Rifle + Light Flamethrower, D-Charges / Pistol, Knife. (0.5 | 25)
RIOT GRRL Boarding Shotgun, Stun Grenades / Pistol, Knife. (0 | 27)
RIOT GRRL Combi Rifle, Blitzen, Stun Grenades / Pistol, Knife. (0 | 29)
REVEREND CUSTODIER Hacker (Assault Device Plus UPGRADE: Icebreaker) Combi Rifle + Pitcher / Pistol, Knife. (0.5 | 32)
GRENZER Missile Launcher / Pistol, Breaker Pistol, Knife. (1.5 | 29)
STEMPLER ZOND Combi Rifle, Sniffer / Electric Pulse. (0 | 17)
JAGUAR Chain Rifle, Smoke Grenades / Pistol, DA CCW. (0 | 10)

GROUP 2 | 5 2 4

KRAKOT RENEGADE 2 Chain Rifles, Grenades / Pistol, DA CC Weapon. (0 | 14)
KRAKOT RENEGADE 2 Chain Rifles, Grenades / Pistol, DA CC Weapon. (0 | 14)
JAGUAR Adhesive Launcher, Panzerfaust / Pistol, DA CCW. (0.5 | 13)
JAGUAR Adhesive Launcher, Panzerfaust / Pistol, DA CCW. (0.5 | 13)
JAGUAR Adhesive Launcher, Panzerfaust / Pistol, DA CCW. (0.5 | 13)
MORLOCK Chain Rifle, Smoke Grenades / Pistol, E/M CCW. (0 | 6)
MORLOCK Chain Rifle, Smoke Grenades / Pistol, E/M CCW. (0 | 6)


4 SWC | 300 Points | Open in Infinity Army

Hassassin Bahram


GROUP 1 | 10

LEILA SHARIF Hacker (Killer Hacking Device) Shock Marksman Rifle, D-Charges / Breaker Pistol, Knife. (0 | 20)
GHULAM Doctor Plus (MediKit) Rifle + Light Shotgun / Pistol, Knife. (0 | 16)
GHULAM (Forward Observer) Rifle + Light Shotgun / Pistol, Knife. (0 | 13)
GHULAM Lieutenant Missile Launcher / Pistol, Knife. (1.5 | 17)
GHULAM Missile Launcher / Pistol, Knife. (1.5 | 17)

FIDAY Rifle + Light Shotgun, Antipersonnel Mines, Smoke Grenades / Pistol, AP CCW, Knife. (0 | 31)
FIDAY Rifle + Light Shotgun, Antipersonnel Mines, Smoke Grenades / Pistol, AP CCW, Knife. (0 | 31)

MUYIB (Fireteam: Haris) Rifle + Light Shotgun, Panzerfaust, D-Charges / Pistol, Knife. (0.5 | 25)
MUYIB Doctor Plus (MediKit) Rifle + Light Shotgun, D.E.P. / Pistol, Knife. (0 | 27)
MUYIB (X Visor) Spitfire, D-Charges / Pistol, Knife. (1 | 28)

GROUP 2 | 2 4 4

LASIQ Viral Sniper Rifle / Pistol, Knife. (1.5 | 25)
MUTTAWI’AH Chain Rifle, E/Marat, Jammer, Smoke Grenades / Pistol, Knife. (0 | 5)
MUTTAWI’AH Chain Rifle, E/Marat, Jammer, Smoke Grenades / Pistol, Knife. (0 | 5)
MUTTAWI’AH Chain Rifle, E/Marat, Jammer, Smoke Grenades / Pistol, Knife. (0 | 5)
MUTTAWI’AH Chain Rifle, E/Marat, Jammer, Smoke Grenades / Pistol, Knife. (0 | 5)
FARZAN (Chain of Command) Boarding Shotgun / Pistol, Knife. (0 | 26)


6 SWC | 296 Points | Open in Infinity Army

Deployment

I deploy first, and totally make a mess of things. I enjoy symmetry, so I tried to deploy symmetrically, at least as far as my list would allow! Probably not the smartest thing to do blindly, especially against Hassassin Bahram.

I put the Jaguar Panzerfausts and the Grenzer ML in pairs on either side of the board, intending to cover the board with a crossfire of scary EXP AROs. I bundle the rest of my units into the center “cavity” of my deployment zone, pairing Riot Grrls with Wildcats at the boundary, a pair of Morlocks tucked in the back, one on each side, with the Stempler and my Intruder Lt in the middle. I put a Krakot on the left, to advance up the bridge, and then it’s his turn to deploy.

My opponent sets up his favorite link team archetype on my far right, with both missile launchers out to ARO and Leila Sharif in a forward position to advance in his active turn. The Muyib Haris deploys on my left, wrapped around the building in the corner, with just the Spitfire exposed. The Farzan is hidden in the back, along with the Mutts, two to each side. The Lasiq hangs out on the roof of the building the Muyibs are hiding behind, and then it’s Fiday time. A Fiday shows up behind my Grenzer, and then I drop a Krakot on the right side of the board, and another Fiday shows up next to my Lieutenant. Greaaaat.

Turn 1

Top of Turn 1 – Nomads

The right Morlock runs out to die and gets the right Wildcat killed by the Ghulam missile link team. Before she goes, she drops some smoke on the Fiday next to my Intruder. The other morlock advances towards the Lasiq safely. The Krakot on the left goes down to a missile as well, but the right one advances safely. I spend a bunch of orders on the right Krakot, getting him up to the Ghulam link team. I get cocky because of his PH+3 Metachemistry roll and throw a grenade instead of double chain-rifling them, roll terribly, and get shot off the table. Stupid stupid stupid. I attempt to discover the Fiday next to my Intruder through the smoke with my Intruder’s Lt order, but fail the WIP roll.

I spend a coordinated order on all the Jaguar Panzerfausts, leaving them where they are but turning them towards the Fiday on the roof behind my Grenzer as if I’m going to attempt a discover. The Fiday drops smoke at his feet, and I coordinated order Panzerfaust the Lasiq, blowing it off the table. Now that the Fiday behind my Grenzer has revealed itself, I gun it down with my Intruder’s combi-rifle.

The remaining Morlock lobs a smoke grenade to break LoF from the Grenzer to the Ghulam link team, and I move the Grenzer into position so he can see the Muyibs and drop a template on them. I hit, but the Spitfire Muyib crits the Grenzer. Fortunately, the Muyib Doctor standing next to him doesn’t pass his ARM rolls and gets blasted off the table. I’ve gotta get my Lieutenant to safety, so I recamo him and scurry him away around the corner of a building with a coordinated order, driving my Stempler away from the remaining Fiday, and advancing one of my Riot Grrls. What a rough turn!

Bottom of Turn 1 – Hassassin Bahram

The Mutts do what they’re supposed to do and roll up the field, throwing smoke and being jerks. The Ghulams advance and trade some fire with my Jaguar on the right, taking him out, but not before I Blitzen one of the ML Ghulams with my Riot Grrl. The Muyib Haris rolls up my left flank uncontested, the Spitfire Muyib leading the way with the other Muyib playing rear guard in case I AD in something. It’s at this point that I remember that we’re playing Quadrant Control, and that I haven’t advanced anything! Whoops! The Fidays completely occupied my attention. 

Speaking of which, he activates his remaining Fiday, shotguns down the last Wildcat with the Riot Grrl passing her ARM save on the template. The rest of my forces blow the Fiday off the table with extreme prejudice. He’s got 2 quadrants to my one, so he gets two points for the turn.

Turn 2

Top of Turn 2 – Nomads

My Morlock trades shots with a Mutt, but nothing happens. I push the Jaguars forward to take the close quadrants, and drop a Mutt with my Intruder. I attempt to Blitzen another Ghulam but fail. Not good. I spend some orders on my Reverend Custodier, who just dismantles the Muyib link with her ODD combi-rifle. Okay, maybe there’s something to this ODD thing, eh? With my Lt order, I recamo the Intruder.

Bottom of Turn 2 – Hassassin Bahram

He advances his Mutts. One of his Mutts and attempts to discover my Intruder. I gnash my teeth, flamethrower him, and get shot in the face with an E/Marat for my trouble and fail my BTS roll. At least he failed his ARM roll! The Ghulam link pushes up some more, with the Blitzen’d Ghulam ineffectually shooting his Missile Launcher. Under the cover of smoke, a Mutt pushes all the way up to threaten my Custodier but isn’t in range yet.

I’ve got two quadrants to his one now, thanks to my Custodier wiping out his Muyibs, so we’re tied, 2-2.

Turn 3

Top of Turn 3 – Nomads

He’s actually got a Mutt behind my Morlock now, so I have to run backwards, getting chain rifled by another Mutt in the process. I’m in Loss of Lieutenant too, so I spend the Jaguars’ frenzy orders carefully to advance them, taking hail mary pistol shots and ADHL shots as appropriate. My opponent, as he is wont to do, passes his ARM saves left and right while I whiff shots left and right.

My Intruder goes down shooting it out with his link team with only my Custodier left standing on the left, the Stempler having gone down to a lucky crit.

Bottom of Turn 3 – Hassassin Bahram

With run of the board, he takes 3 quadrants to my one and finishes it out with a 4-2 win.

4-2 Hassassin Bahram Victory!

Notes

  • I should’ve canceled the first Morlock’s order, since I knew she was going to die and take the Wildcat with her.
  • Definitely should’ve chain-rifled the Ghulams with the Krakot instead of trying to get fancy. Stupid. That would probably have fixed a lot of stuff for me.
  • I got distracted by the Fidays, definitely needed to stay calm and push into the midfield and get objectives. My first time seeing them on the board, so I guess I handled it okay all things considered.
  • I didn’t deploy at all on the relatively open flank paths, aside from the Krakot on the right. Given that I basically had run of those advancement routes, I should’ve taken advantage of it!
  • Symmetry in deployment, while pleasing to my eye, wasn’t terribly good in practice.
  • Jaguar Panzerfausts are quite toolboxy. I miss the smoke grenades though, and it can be hard to find 1.5 SWC to take three of them.
  • I need more Riot Grrls in my life! Blitzens on an HI platform are great!
  • Stempler Zonds are useful, but not against impersonation. Drat.
  • Loss of Lieutenant hurts but if you’re careful and efficient with your units (and your units are amazing, toolboxy Nomad units) you’ll be okay.
  • Intruder Lt’s are quite toolboxy.
  • Even though I was a bit low on high-burst long range weapons, I made do with my Panzerfausts and Blitzens. I wish I had my trusty Intruder MSR though. I always miss that guy when I don’t have him on the table.
  • Reverend Custodier with combi-rifle is a pretty good midfield pusher! ODD and a decent BS makes for a good gun platform, even if all you’ve got is the combi-rifle.
  • Mutts. =(
  • Grenzer did his job. Sad that I lost him to a crit though.

Thoughts on the Table

  • This board had lots and lots of firelanes. Basically there were three fights:
    • If you were on the roofs, you were shooting at units in the opponent’s DZ that were also on the roof.
    • If you were on the ground, you were fighting in your vertical firelane and possibly getting shot by someone on a roof.
    • If you were on the flank, you could ignore the roofs but you had to deal with long firelanes there too.
  • The staggered keyhole idea of broken concentric boxes didn’t really work. Being able to deploy on the roofs and therefore being able to see across the board and into the center made for a “shooting fish in a barrel” situation and fights devolved into who had active turn.
  • The corners weren’t blocked off enough, and ended up in corner-to-corner firefights.
  • The symmetry made for somewhat symmetric movement. The Muyibs on my left, the Ghulams on my right. I had my Intruder on the right and my Custodier on the left. At that point my superior troops contended with his link team bonuses and it came down to dice.
  • Once the rooftop AROs were gone, the Mutts became very strong, especially since my Intruder couldn’t be everywhere at once. Clearly I need more Intruders all the time.
  • On that note, warbands with smoke are very strong on this table.
  • I think I’d be willing to try this one again, but with a different list. I basically had nothing with high burst at all, and only disposable weapons for out to 32″.
WiseKensai

WiseKensai

I primarily play Infinity these days, but I have PHR fleet for Dropfleet Commander and I will eventually get my CEF for Heavy Gear built...

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