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Cancon 2019 - An Exploration of Soft Power, or, How to Win Without Big Guns

Discussion in 'Battle Reports' started by Jonno, Feb 19, 2019.

  1. Jonno

    Jonno Well-Known Member

    Joined:
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    These are my battle reports from Cancon, the Australian satellite and biggest tournament, which drew around 70 players this year. It is always a great deal of fun to attend and I highly recommend you get to it if you can.

    I have played for about four years now, almost entirely with vanilla Haqqislam or Qapu Khalqi. I just haven't be able to moved away from Saladin and his Fidays :) I think I generally play pretty well and have placed highly the last three times (5th, 10th, and 16th I think).

    For a while now I have been thinking about how power and control work in Infinity. Although I greatly enjoy “hard power”, (killing enemy units through superior firepower), I found “soft power” to be much more effective. What I mean by soft power is the ability to get your opponent to spend their orders on things that don’t help them win the mission. Often this is by redirecting their plans, for example by having a sniper block a lane which often encourages the opponent to spend orders moving down another path. Making them discover camo markers, trigger mines and Reset against Hackers and Jammers are other Order sinks. My favourite part about soft power is that it is not often tested – an MSV 2 sniper may never need to shoot, it just needs to be in the right spot and the opponent will avoid the face to face roll. These choices to test or not force your opponent to waste brain power solving your soft power puzzle, instead of on winning the mission.

    I started playing Infinity with Haqqislam mainly because of their unparalleled ability to play mind games with your opponent thanks to Strategos, Fidays, and the presence of Holoprojectors. Although I had liked the idea of Hafzas, I had never actually been able to fit them into my lists, choosing instead to include more "mundane" long range pieces like a Djanzaban Sniper or a TR HMG bot. What I have often found though is that the Djanzaban never gets to shoot, and instead the opponent will find a way around without dealing with it directly. That, or they apply the correct tool to remove it in an order or two, like with a linked HI HMG, and it was just a waste of points.

    This year I wanted to fully explore and rely on soft power, so decided to take no heavy weapons of any sort. In my lists there are no guns beyond rifle ranges.

    Cancon 2019 had these missions:
    1. Supremacy
    2. Decapitation
    3. Frontline
    4. Supplies
    5. Firefight
    To me these are all very good, straightforward missions that don’t require a great deal of list skew to handle. Apart from Decapitation, they are all about controlling the position of enemy units and preventing the enemy from killing yours.

    Have a look at the two lists I took and think about how you would use them, or how you would face them. They are quite similar, which is what I like to do for tournaments with missions that allow this approach.

    A List is a List
    ──────────────────────────────────────────────────

    GROUP 1[​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]9 [​IMG]1

    SALADIN Lieutenant Combi Rifle, Nanopulser / Pistol, CCW. (0 | 36)

    AL-DJABEL Rifle + Light Shotgun, Smoke Grenades / Pistol, Viral CCW, Knife. (0 | 35)

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

    TUAREG Hacker (Assault Hacking Device) Rifle + Light Shotgun, Antipersonnel Mines / Pistol, Knife. (0.5 | 35)

    FARZAN (Minelayer) Boarding Shotgun, Antipersonnel Mines / Pistol, Knife. (0 | 23)

    HAFZA (Forward Observer) Rifle + Light Shotgun / Pistol, Knife. (0 | 17)

    HAFZA (Forward Observer) Rifle + Light Shotgun / Pistol, Knife. (0 | 17)

    KAMEEL (Minesweeper, Repeater) Electric Pulse. (0 | 8)

    HUNZAKUT (Forward Observer, Deployable Repeater) Rifle + Light Shotgun, Antipersonnel Mines / Pistol, Knife. (0 | 18)

    TUAREG Doctor Plus (MediKit) Rifle + Light Shotgun, Antipersonnel Mines / Pistol, Knife. (0 | 33)


    GROUP 2[​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]2 [​IMG]5 [​IMG]4

    KAMEEL (Minesweeper, Repeater) Electric Pulse. (0 | 8)

    FANOUS REMOTE Flash Pulse, Sniffer / Electric Pulse. (0 | 8)

    LIBERTO (Minelayer) Light Shotgun, Chain-colt, Antipersonnel Mines / Pistol, Knife. (1 | 10)

    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)

    1.5 SWC | 299 Points

    Open in Infinity Army

    The Old Man's Mountain
    ──────────────────────────────────────────────────

    GROUP 1[​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]10 [​IMG]1

    SALADIN Lieutenant Combi Rifle, Nanopulser / Pistol, CCW. (0 | 36)

    AL-DJABEL Rifle + Light Shotgun, Smoke Grenades / Pistol, Viral CCW, Knife. (0 | 35)

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

    TUAREG Hacker (Assault Hacking Device) Rifle + Light Shotgun, Antipersonnel Mines / Pistol, Knife. (0.5 | 35)

    FARZAN (Minelayer) Boarding Shotgun, Antipersonnel Mines / Pistol, Knife. (0 | 23)

    HAFZA (Forward Observer) Rifle + Light Shotgun / Pistol, Knife. (0 | 17)

    HAFZA (Forward Observer) Rifle + Light Shotgun / Pistol, Knife. (0 | 17)

    KRAKOT RENEGADE 2 Chain Rifles, Grenades / Pistol, DA CC Weapon. (0 | 14)

    NAFFATÛN Rifle + Light Flamethrower, Grenades / Pistol, Knife. (0 | 12)

    RAGIK Rifle + Light Shotgun / Pistol, CCW. (0 | 26)


    GROUP 2[​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]3 [​IMG]5 [​IMG]4

    KAMEEL (Minesweeper, Repeater) Electric Pulse. (0 | 8)

    KAMEEL (Minesweeper, Repeater) Electric Pulse. (0 | 8)

    FANOUS REMOTE Flash Pulse, Sniffer / Electric Pulse. (0 | 8)

    LIBERTO (Minelayer) Light Shotgun, Chain-colt, Antipersonnel Mines / Pistol, Knife. (1 | 10)

    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)

    1.5 SWC | 300 Points

    Open in Infinity Army

    My predicted game plan assuming deploying first was quite simple:

    Control the midfield with the 4-5 camo markers and keep the two TO units in Hidden Deployment. Try to position the Ghazis aggressively enough that your opponent is threatened, but not that they will have to die in the first turn. The Hafzas deploy as whatever is worst for your opponent. Often this is as Djanzaban snipers or HMGs, a Lasiq viral sniper, an Asawira Spitfire, or a Janissary HMG. Using the Hafzas, Ghazis and the camo markers lets you dictate where their ARO units have to go, which should let you put your Tuaregs and Fidays in good positions to attack unopposed or be able to flank the enemy when they advance. The remotes hide in the back.

    Once your opponent has deployed everything, your Fidays arrive. They have a few jobs available to them:
    • Assassinate key targets (lieutenants, specialists, link leaders)
    • Destroy their order pool – conga line link teams, weak cheerleaders
    • Guard zones – An effective 12” melee range coupled with smoke and mines means they can happily take on most units who dare to challenge their zone.
    • Distract resources – Starting prone on a building just outside their deployment zone means the opponent needs to spend maybe 5-6 orders rooting them out, or risk getting shot in the back when they advance.
    Although I enjoy assassination runs, I find they are often best used as order sinks and distractions. This lets you spend orders on your other units and focus on the mission.

    Midfield minelayers are fantastic, and I have really enjoyed playing with the Libertos. Although Forward Deployment 2 isn’t as good as real Infiltration, it’s often good enough, especially as I have the Farzan Minelayer as well. With the Hunzakut, one Fiday and both Tuaregs also packing mines, I should be able to put a mine on any corner I need, and often will drop 2-3 a turn.

    The Ghazis are a real threat to most units, and most of my opponents are sensibly cautious about them. Having the 2-3 regular orders in their pool means they can strike at 20-30” reliably without spending Command Tokens. They usually run in pairs, so one can throw smoke for the other, and so they can guard each other when attacked.

    Originally, I was going to take 3-4 Ragiks for Firefight, but to be honest I have found Tuaregs and Fidays generally do a better job at exploiting holes in the enemy’s position and killing soft targets, and can much more reliably get to where they need to be (as well as being 4-4, and the Tuareg having TO mods).

    I took the Krakot to replace a second Naffatun deployment zone guard as they are just amazing. Twin Chain Rifles is fearsome, as are grenades thrown on 16s or 19s if they roll right on MetaChemistry. On top of that, they have Beserk with a DA CCW.

    Round One – Supremacy
    Opponent: Ryan, Invincible Army
    Table: Outpost

    Supremacy
    • Dominate more Quadrants each round (1)
    • Dominate the Quadrant with your Xenotech in it (1)
    • Hack a console (1 each, up to 3)
    • Place the Multiscanner (1)
    • Don’t place the Multiscanner (-1)
    • One Classified (1)
    • If the Classified has the “world” symbol (1)

    [​IMG]

    I can’t remember the Classified I drew, so it may have been impossible for me and I ignored it. I didn’t realise we shouldn't keep the red deck shuffled in until the fourth round, so perhaps it was one of those cards (this was my first time using the new deck).

    I took my first list as two TO units are better than one in Supremacy, and the Hunzakut is amazing here with its Deployable Repeater and mines.

    I won the LT roll and chose deployment so that I would likely also go second. I took the building covered side, so my Ghazis could run up unopposed and so that he would have trouble holding his quadrants without good cover.

    Invincible Army

    ──────────────────────────────────────────────────


    GROUP 1[​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]9

    DĀOYĪNG Lieutenant L2 (Minelayer) MULTI Sniper, Antipersonnel Mines / Breaker Pistol, Knife. (1.5 | 32)

    HǍIDÀO (Multispectral Visor L2) MULTI Sniper / Breaker Pistol, Knife. (1.5 | 37)

    SON-BAE Yaókòng Missile Launcher / Electric Pulse. (1.5 | 17)

    ZHANSHI HMG / Pistol, Knife. (1 | 19)

    ZHANSHI Paramedic (MediKit) Combi Rifle / Pistol, Knife. (0 | 13)

    ZHANSHI Combi Rifle / Pistol, Knife. (0 | 11)

    ZHANSHI Combi Rifle / Pistol, Knife. (0 | 11)

    Zhanshi YĪSHĒNG Combi Rifle / Pistol, Knife. (0 | 15)

    ZHĒNCHÁ (Forward Observer) Submachine Gun, D.E.P., Antipersonnel Mines / Pistol, Knife. (0 | 34)


    GROUP 2[​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]4 [​IMG]1

    WÈIBĪNG Yaókòng Combi Rifle, Sniffer / Electric Pulse. (0 | 16)

    CHAĪYÌ Yaókòng Flash Pulse, Sniffer / Electric Pulse. (0 | 8)

    CHAĪYÌ Yaókòng Flash Pulse, Sniffer / Electric Pulse. (0 | 8)

    PANGGULING (Minesweeper, Repeater) Electric Pulse. (0 | 8)

    WARCOR (Aerocam) Flash Pulse / Stun Pistol, Knife. (0 | 3)

    5.5 SWC | 232 Points

    Open in Infinity Army

    Well, I guessed any midfield camo marker would be the submachine gun Zhencha, and any backfield camo marker to be a Daoying Lt.

    I have been learning to write down in a little book what I see on the table and estimate the missing points costs. This has also helped me stop overlooking key pieces of information, such as who is prone and who is not. If you want, estimate how much this list is worth and predict what must then be coming.

    He only deployed about 230 points, and for some reason I forgot that Invincible Army have TO, so I assumed he must have two Liu Xing BSGs waiting to drop, when he very well could have a Hac Tao KHD (but not ML, as he has used 5.5 SWC already).

    He deployed his Zhanshi link on the left building and catwalk. One camo marker stood on the right building, with the other just in front of it on the ground. The Warcor synched to his Xenotech went on the right flank, with the FO bot in the right back corner. Behind the midfield building went the Zhencha.

    My deployment wasn’t very clever; I put a mine on the right console, the Doc+ Tuareg behind the centre container, and the AHD on the left console. Al-Djabel went up on the right building so he could crawl forward to contest their zone, but I should have just put him in the zone to start with which is what I would normally do. I think I was flustered as this was the first round of the tournament so went for an easy, defensive start which put me on the backfoot in this match.

    Top of turn one - IA

    I doubt that he will run anything important into range of the Ghazis, but I still don’t want him to gain momentum, so I strip his main pool. Of course, this was silly considering what was in the second pool and what I had hiding.

    From his second pool he coordinates the two Sniffer bots and puts down sniffers on the right and left flanks. The Hunzakut reveals to take a shot as he is definitely in Sniffer range and will be Sensored next order anyway. I forgot the Tuareg AHD was there as well so forgot to ARO Oblivion. The Hunzakut whiffs his shot and the Sniffers deploy. He then Sensors and catches – the now revealed Hunzakut, the Tuareg AHD, the Libertos and his mine, and the Farzan and his mine. My Tuareg ARO Oblivions his FO Bot, which on writing this sounds illegal so I’m not sure exactly what happened. His Sensor range missed the Tuareg Doc+ by about half an inch. What a ridiculous start, of course I should have seen the Sensor coming. It was a good lesson and a great play by him J

    His link doesn’t have anything to shoot at so just moves two Zhanshi into the quadrant. He moves his Warcor with Xenotech up and drops the multiscanner. His Zhencha pulls back and comes around to be in position to attack my Hunzakut and friends next turn.

    Bottom of turn one – Haqq

    My right Ghazi runs up and knocks out the Snifferbot and Warcor, missing the camo marker on the ground by about an inch. The Hunzakut takes out the Sniffer bot by shooting the Sniffer to avoid the Mimetism MOD, then peeks around the corner and puts down the Zhencha. I push my Xenotech up, then recamo everybody that can. The Libertos drops a mine or two.

    I hold my two quadrants, and his right quadrant as my Ghazi is the only one in there. With my Xenotech bonus I’m on 2, and he’s 0.

    Top of turn two - IA

    Surprise surprise, it’s Hac Tao time! I had forgotten they were in IA, hopefully I will never do that again. He walks through to my half of the table and takes out the Hunzakut. Then he strolls over to the Libertos, tanking the mine, and puts down the AHD and the Libertos despite their best efforts. The Fiday there watches the carnage with distaste but doesn’t intervene. He pulls the Hac Tao back into his Xenotech quadrant but doesn’t have the orders to recamo. His FO bot is by itself in the back and Isolated, so starts walking up to get in the action.

    Bottom of turn two – Haqq

    Hmm, now I need to take out the Hac Tao to prevent him getting his Xenotech bonuses. I push my left Fiday up, smoking my way past the link team and getting into CC. I spend an order or two whiffing hits before I realise I’ve now emptied my left Quadrant, so that’s not good. I reveal and push my Doc+ into his left quadrant just to steal it from his two Zhanshis. I walk my Asawira (Hafza FO) up to hit my right Console, before realising the real console is on the roof and the one on the ground is just scenery! I put my Multiscanner down and pray.

    He gets a point for controlling the quadrant with the Xenotech in it, but I have two quadrants plus my Xenotech to his one quadrant so it’s now 4-1.

    Top of turn three - IA

    His link team charges out and battles the Doc+, putting him down. They then flood into my left quadrant and take out the Asawira (Hafza FO). He leaves the Fiday alone with the Hac Tao. He moves his Lt multi-sniper over to the centre, it was the ground camo marker after all! What a great bluff, he must have been sweating when my Ghazi almost clipped it.

    I think he scores his two classifieds, but I can’t remember what they were.

    Bottom of turn three - Haqq

    Ok so I have to deny him the quadrant control in order to win and I have about 6 orders. I can’t get any consoles, and I think I can’t get any Classifieds. If I knock out the top right quadrant he’ll lose the Xenotech bonus so that seems the best bet. I stand Al-Djabel up and walk him across the building and down the ladder. With Impersonator he can just ignore everything anyway for the first order, and his second order gets him out of LoF of enemies, so his third order is a risk-free move into CC with the Hac Tao. Having the other Fiday there increases his burst by 1, so with MA4 he has B3 on CC23 with a Viral CCW. The dice gods are kind, and I force 6 BTS saves on the Hac Tao, killing him instantly. Next my Farzan runs up the right flank, and after a couple of shots takes out both the FO bot and his lieutenant without dying, securing me that quadrant.

    I burn the two orders in my second pool, and then while we’re writing the scores realise I could have just run my baggage bot up the left flank to Secure the HVT! I’ll try to remember that for next time.

    Conclusion

    6-4 minor win

    A friendly and fun opponent, and a great match. I couldn’t ask for a better start to a tournament.

    Things I learnt:
    • Invincible Army definitely has Hac Tao.
    • First turn Sensors are very sensible and docking that pool would have prevented it.
    • Hac Taos have nanopulsers.
    Things I could have done better:
    • Put the Fidays in the opponent’s quadrants! That was always what I’ve done previously so I don’t know why I didn’t this time.
    • Don’t allow two objective markers to be present, just use one (especially if one is just a token).
    • Consider Secure the HVT, always.

    Round Two - Decapitation
    Opponent: Sam, Combined Army
    Table: Canyon shantytown

    Decapitation
    • Kill more Army Points (2)
    • Kill more Lieutenants (3)
    • Kill same number of Lieutenants (2)
    • Kill the Designated Target (2)
    • Kill the Designated Target with your DataTracker (3)

    My experience with Decapitation has always been this:
    0. HVT deploys 20” out as the Deployment zones are 16”. This usually means it’s in a terrible spot and is hard to defend.
    1. First player kills the enemy HVT with their DataTracker on the first or second order. (Securing 5 points)
    2a. First player synchs with their own HVT and pulls it back to safety. (Defending 2-5 points)
    2b. First player assassinates the opponent’s DataTracker. (Denying 3 points)
    Usually that means the first player has got an enormous lead, and now just needs to not be tabled.

    Thanks to Strategos, going second isn’t so bad as they can’t hold their DataTracker in reserve, so I can counterdeploy the HVT somewhere difficult for them. Against other Strategos however, I lose this major advantage. Against an Avatar Datatracker, it is also very difficult to kill his Lieutenant and army points.

    Today, of course, I face an Avatar and he wins the roll and takes first turn. This usually means an auto-loss, or hard fought draw, but on this map I found a perfect spot to defend my HVT so I think I’ve got a chance.

    We ruled a couple of things:
    1. “Killed” only happens at the end of the game if Null, so you can repair/heal from Unconscious without having counted as Killed.
    2. HVT’s cannot be heal/repaired as they are not Friendly troopers.
    3. Engineers can re-roll to heal Ghost: Mnemonica, as the Wiki page for Engineer says they only need Ghost to re-roll. I highlight this because the Ghost: Mnemonica skill does not include a point indicating it allows re-rolls, unlike Ghost; Remote Presence. Additionally, Mnemonica does not grant two levels of Unconscious, only Remote Presence does, and the Avatar does not have that.
    Combined Army
    ──────────────────────────────────────────────────

    [​IMG]10 [​IMG]1

    AVATAR Lieutenant (Strategos L3) MULTI HMG, Sepsitor Plus / DA CCW. (3.5 | 137)

    [​IMG] STALDRON Flash Pulse / Knife. (0 | 0)

    SPECULO KILLER Boarding Shotgun, Smoke Grenades / Pistol, Monofilament CCW, Knife. (1 | 34)

    Q-DRONE HMG / Electric Pulse. (1 | 26)

    KERR-NAU (UPGRADE: White Noise) Plasma Rifle + Pitcher, D-Charges / Breaker Pistol, Knife. (0 | 27)

    DĀTURAZI Chain Rifle, Grenades, Smoke Grenades / Pistol, AP CCW. (0 | 14)

    MED-TECH OBSIDON MEDCHANOID Combi Rifle, D-Charges / Pistol, Knife. (0 | 23)

    SLAVE DRONE Electric Pulse. (0 | 3)

    R-DRONE Flash Pulse, Sniffer / Electric Pulse. (0 | 8)

    R-DRONE Flash Pulse, Sniffer / Electric Pulse. (0 | 8)

    IKADRON (Baggage, Repeater) 2 Light Flamethrowers, Flash Pulse / Pistol, Electric Pulse. (0 | 9)

    IKADRON (Baggage, Repeater) 2 Light Flamethrowers, Flash Pulse / Pistol, Electric Pulse. (0 | 9)

    5.5 SWC | 298 Points

    Open in Infinity Army

    [​IMG]

    This shot was taken from the right hand side of the board. My deployment zone was the left edge of the photo, his was the right. The watertank and bus shelter where the whole game took place can be seen in the middle at the back.

    Deployment

    He puts his HVT in the left bus shelter with the Q-drone looking over it. His whole force then goes in the backfield.

    I put my HVT on the left as well, hiding behind the shelter and the watertank (which was played as filled). My Fiday stands next to him, and I put both mines and minelayers, three Ghazis, and both TO units in overwatch. My Hafza FO Asawira can see a sliver of the shelter so will catch anyone running up to the HVT.

    [​IMG]

    His Avatar was naturally his reserve and goes on the left. Al-Djabel was my reserve and hides in the bus shelter next to his HVT.

    I make my Djanzaban HMG my DataTracker to try and bait the Speculo away from my HVT, as I’m planning on preventing my HVT from dying at all this game. Also, I don’t have any other good Datatracker choices as the Asawira (Hafza) was even closer to the Speculo, and Saladin too far away.

    Top of turn one - CA

    He can’t get anything near my HVT due to the two mines, three Ghazis, Fiday, Libertos and Asawira (Hafza FO), nor can he spec fire grenades on it due to the “friendly” Fiday guarding him. Instead he decides to take out my Datatracker with his Speculo. It takes him a few orders to get into position, but crits my Djanbazan HMG (Hafza FO) on the first try with his monofilament blade. Luckily my aros kill the Speculo, preventing any Automedkit shenanigans. He pushes up his Daturazi to guard his HVT and puts his Avatar in Suppressive Fire overlooking the corridor connecting both HVTs.

    Bottom of turn one – Haqq

    With my Datatracker dead I can attack his HVT with anyone, but now there is a pesky Daturazi in the way. My Ghazis get smoke down so my Fiday can stroll up past the Daturazi, planting mines and taking out the HVT in CC. My Ghazi Intuitive attacks the Dat through smoke, forcing him to Dodge. He fails, copping the mine and Chain Rifle, and dies. The Ghazi pushes on and jams the Q-drone through smoke just because I was in range, but it cost me a Command Token I really needed later. My Fiday reimpersonates.

    Top of turn two - CA

    He still can’t get anything near my HVT, so he pushes his Avatar forward and kills the minelaying Fiday, the AHD Tuareg and a couple of Ghazis, before pulling back to safety and going into Suppressive Fire.

    Bottom of turn two - Haqq

    I’ve got to get that Avatar down, and Al-Djabel is the man to do it. I get smoke off, and Al runs up into it. He Speculative Fires more smoke onto the Avatar, then runs in to cut him up. I don’t have the orders to reimpersonate for the Surprise Attack, so I just have to win it through luck against his CC 18. MA4 gives me B2, and I manage to win the rolls. Damage 13 against BTS 9 means I need 4s to wound. He rolls 19, 4, 3, 4. The Avatar is down! Unfortunately, I have no orders left so cannot Coup de Grace because I’m out of Command Tokens. I wasn’t really hoping to actually wound the Avatar, but just to tie it up for the turn so that next turn I could kill it. My Hunzakut uses his Irregular Order to move-move and gets a bead on Dr Worm for next turn.

    Top of turn three - CA

    There is no Loss of Lieutenant in Decap, so he’s got a few orders to play with. He brings Dr Worm around the corner, dodging the Hunzakuts ARO rifle shot, and manages to heal the Avatar after two rerolls (but he still had two Command Tokens left after that). He then runs his Ikadron up the field and manages to get it around the corner to see my HVT. My HVT valiantly tries to dodge but is knocked unconscious by the twin flamers. The Ikadron survives the AROs but is Jammed and Engaged by my Libertos, (which was to stop further attacks on the HVT if he had survived).

    Bottom of turn three - Haqq

    So we’re even on HVTs, and no Lieutenants have been killed. He has killed heaps of my stuff, and I’ve killed hardly any of his, so currently he is winning. Al-Djabel is still engaged with the Avatar, so all I need to do is take off one wound to win. I’ve got about 7 orders to do it, with about a 30% chance to crit per order. Somewhere distant the Evolved Intelligence hears this and laughs. First order – he crits me instead, and Al-Djabel is dead. Now I need to take down the Avatar, in cover, and I have pretty much nothing nearby. Also, there is a Q-drone on overwatch.

    Take a moment to plan your attack, Commander. You have:
    1. One Farzan minelayer with boarding shotgun.
    2. One Ghazi, but not enough orders to get it into range of the Avatar.
    3. One Tuareg Doctor Plus with rifle and light shotgun.
    4. One Hunzakut who is too far away to make it to anyone.
    5. Saladin in the back field.
    As the Avatar is ARM9, he is ARM12 in cover, meaning against a damage 13 rifle he needs to roll a 2 or higher to save. A boarding shotgun using AP is DAM 14 against ARM 5+3, so he saves on 7s and higher, but you’re hitting on -9 outside of 8” due to ODD and cover. (For interest the boarding shotgun with template mode is DAM 14 against ARM 9, needing only 6s to save, so is worse than AP).

    I couldn’t think of anything cleverer than critting the Avatar with a rifle, so that’s what I try. My only hope is my Tuareg Doc+, so he begins his long slog directly towards the waiting Avatar and Q-drone. He hunkers up next to his unconscious Tuareg AHD buddy, and now has about 4 orders to survive the Avatar and crit him on a 5 (BS 11, +3 range, -3 cover, -6 ODD). Luckily the Avatar is only hitting back on a 6 (BS 15, 0 range, -3 cover, -6 TO), and the Q-drone on 2s (BS 11, 0 range, -3 cover, -6 TO). First order, miss. Second order, miss. Third order, miss. Fourth order – CRIT! With that crit the Tuareg has won me the game. Talk about snatching victory from the jaws of defeat.

    [​IMG]

    Conclusion

    5-4 minor win

    Another great opponent. He was friendly, and it was a fun match. The positioning around the HVTs was a great puzzle, and we both got important lucky crits which always feels good.

    Things I learnt:
    • Decapitation is not always lost on the Lieutenant roll, sometimes you can win if you just have Strategos, run Impersonators to prevent Speculative Fire, and can get the Avatar in CC, and/or crit it to death twice.
    • Daturazis are fantastic.
    Things I could have done better:
    • Maybe I should have used Al-Djabel’s MA3 in my last turn, just to be safer? It wouldn’t have reduced his crit chance, but it would have reduced his regular to-hit chance. This would have reduced the number of orders I had for Plan B: Crit With A Rifle, but that wasn’t a very good plan to begin with.
    • Jamming the Q-drone didn’t do much except steal an order from his last two turns. I probably should have used the Chain Rifle or E/Marat to Intuitive Attack through the smoke instead. He would have shot back on 2s (-3 range, -6 through smoke) which is pretty good odds. Even better, I could have saved the Command Tokens for later which would have let me Coup de Grace the Avatar, but it’s hard to tell these things at the time.


    Round Three - Frontline
    Opponent: Jacqueline, Steel Phalanx
    Table: Haqqislam outpost

    Frontline
    • Dominate the far zone (4)
    • Dominate the mid zone (2)
    • Dominate the mid zone with your Xenotech in it (1)
    • Dominate the nearest zone (1)
    • Classified Objective (1)
    • Place the Multiscanner (1)
    • Don’t place the Multiscanner (-1)

    My two Classified options were useless, so I took Intelecom with a 9-value card. She kept her Classified.

    Frontline to me is all about going second and securing that third turn zone scoring or going first and killing everything.

    If you take your two closest zones and do your Xenotech stuff, you get a 6-3 minor win (assuming both sides get their Classified and Multiscanner). If you do the same, but prevent their Multiscanner, you get a 6-1 major win. Therefore, striking the Xenotech can be very important and once you deny it, you can just keep your two zones and still get the major win.

    I win the lieutenant roll. Normally I would go second, but this table has some very open deployment zones with flat edges which make hiding difficult, so I choose to go first to get my Fidays going. In hindsight I could have probably chosen Deployment and there would be chance I’d still get to go first, as going second is so powerful in Frontline but that opportunity is rare and takes a very brave opponent to risk the deploy-second, go-first alpha strike.

    Steel Phalanx
    ──────────────────────────────────────────────────

    GROUP 1[​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]10

    HECTOR Lieutenant Plasma Rifle, Nanopulser, Stun Grenades + 1 TinBot A / Heavy Pistol, EXP CC Weapon. (0 | 71)

    PHOENIX Heavy Rocket Launcher, Nanopulser, Smoke Grenades / Heavy Pistol, DA CCW. (2 | 40)

    MYRMIDON Hacker (Assault Hacking Device) Combi Rifle, Nanopulser, Smoke Grenades / Pistol, AP CCW. (0.5 | 31)

    MYRMIDON Chain Rifle, Nanopulser, Smoke Grenades / Pistol, AP CCW. (0 | 16)

    THRASYMEDES (Fireteam: Enomotarchos) Submachine gun, Light Rocket Launcher, Nanopulser, Stun Grenades / Pistol, Shock CCW. (0.5 | 30)

    THORAKITES Submachine gun, Light Rocket Launcher / Pistol, Knife. (1 | 15)

    THORAKITES (360º Visor) Submachine gun, Chain Rifle / Pistol, Knife. (0 | 12)

    THORAKITES (360º Visor) Submachine gun, Chain Rifle / Pistol, Knife. (0 | 12)

    AGÊMA Marksman Missile Launcher / Pistol, Knife. (1.5 | 27)

    NETROD Electric Pulse. (0 | 4)


    GROUP 2[​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]4 [​IMG]1

    WARCOR (Sixth Sense L1) Flash Pulse / Stun Pistol, Knife. (0 | 3)

    DALETH Rebot Combi Rifle, Sniffer / Electric Pulse. (0 | 17)

    LAMEDH Rebot Flash Pulse, Sniffer / Electric Pulse. (0 | 8)

    LAMEDH Rebot Flash Pulse, Sniffer / Electric Pulse. (0 | 8)

    NETROD Electric Pulse. (0 | 4)

    5.5 SWC | 298 Points

    Open in Infinity Army

    [​IMG]

    Deployment

    I put my Djanzaban HMG (Hafza FO) in the left corner, with the Farzan minelayer in the left midfield. This left side is such an open deathtrap that I’ll be very happy if she sends any units into it. My Libertos is on my side of the central building, with a mine guarding the left side. The Hunzakut goes under the middle building, with the Tuareg on the second story. My Tuareg AHD goes prone on the right walkway, with Saladin and my Djanzaban Sniper (Hafza FO) with Xenotech prone on the right building. My baggage bots hide behind the right building with a couple Ghazis.

    Hector and friends go behind the middle white oval tower, with a netrod and flashbot in the right corner. The Thorakites link sits on the left building with the Warcor + Xenotech, and the Agema is on the very top. The FO bot and a flash bot go in the left corner.

    I’m not sure how to approach the Hector, Phoenix and double Myrmidon link. Only the Fidays and the Ghazis can handle the ODD, and the Ghazis can’t get past the Agema ML. The link is good in CC, so I don’t really want the Fidays to 50/50 it with Hector. I think my best bet is to kill the rest of the list, and let the Ghazis take out the Myrm link. I have deployed both TO models as camo makers so that my opponent is unsure where the AHDs are, and so that I have the extra orders.

    I go conservative and put Al-Djabel prone on the central building to score at the end and kill anything that tries to take cover there. Collectively I’m hoping this will funnel all her units onto the right side of the board, so my Ghazis will be able to reach them, and where my AHD is hiding.

    Top of turn one - Haqq

    My minelayer Fiday finds a nice spot on the left building to start ganking. Since her Warcor was not against the wall, I could walk behind him, go prone and be out of line of sight of the Thorakitai link leader. I then drop a mine, and then next order shoot the Warcor with a shotgun. Reading this now, I think we forgot the Warcor has a 360 visor. Or maybe she took Sixth Sense? The Warcor and the Thorakitai dodge, triggering the mine, and both go unconscious. This disconnects the Xenotech and breaks the link. I’m hoping this will cost her 2-3 points in this game, or at least 4-5 orders resynching and running up the field. The Fiday then smokes the other Thorakitai (not just killing him as they have chain rifles) and reimpersonates. This lets him climb the ladder and engage the Agema without being seen, and he knocks her unconscious. Not using the knife (which has shock ammo) was a lucky move as it blocks the spot in the pool, preventing my opponent from transferring a unit.

    My Ghazis move up the field to block the Hector link, resolute in the face of certain death.

    Bottom of turn one – Steel Phalanx

    Jacqueline, being more observant than me, spots a ladder leading up to Saladin, my Djanzaban sniper with Xenotech, and a good view down on my backline. If she can get Hector and friends up there, they’ll have a field day and that’ll be the game. I had put my HVT at the base of the ladder to block it, but during the game we ruled that she could move through it. I don’t know which is correct, but luckily for me, we never had to test it. Phoenix led the team, waltzing across to my right flank where waited Mr Ghazi Muttawi’ah, Defender of the Faith. Phoenix was good, but she didn’t want to get too close or be Chain Rifled/E/Marat’d or Jammed. With armour saves and dodges Mr Mutt managed to keep Phoenix at bay and after an order or two dodged into template range. Hector broke the link and ran back to peek around the right building to take out the Ghazi from afar. Unfortunately, Hector succeeded, but now Jacqueline didn’t have the orders left to press the attack. She was forced to retreat to where she started or die in the midfield in my next turn. If she stood in ARO to kill the Ghazis, my MSV 2 sniper (Hafzo FO) would kill likely them, but if she took cover in the midfield the Ghazis/Impersonator would get them. Sensibly, she reformed the link and pulled back into her deployment zone.

    Top of turn two - Haqq

    Now that I could appreciate the danger the Hector link posed, I was a bit nervous. I wasn’t able to kill them, but in the true soft power mindset I just needed to slow them down. I went after orders, sending the left Farzan up to knock out the netrod and one Thorakitai. Then my right Tuareg AHD pushed up on the right, taking down another netrod and a flashbot, before dropping two mines and recamoing. If I were a sensible man, I would have ensured enough orders to run away again but sometimes the heat of the match just gets to you.

    Bottom of turn two - Steel Phalanx

    With six orders in the main pool (plus 1 regular from the Lieutenant) Jacqueline pulled some from the second pool, so my turn was a bit of a waste to be honest. Then Phoenix came up, discovered a mine then blasted it with the Heavy Rocket Launcher. I really should have seen that coming. The Tuareg burnt to death L This lets the Hector link push up hard on the right and settle into the midfield, dominating the midzone.

    Top of turn three - Haqq

    Hmm… I need to remove the Hector link and score the far zone. I move the minelaying Fiday back down the ladder just to get out of her deployment zone. I push the Djanbazan sniper (Hafza FO) with Xenotech up and drop the Multiscanner. One Ghazi valiantly charges the Hector link and manages to get an E/Marat down on Hector, isolating and immobilising him, but dies in the process. This breaks the link, so Saladin stands up and puts a crit on a 10 on Phoenix before she ducks out of LoF with her Guts movement. I have always found Saladin a great third turn pocket defender, as that BS13, ARM 3 and NWI lets him reliably bully enemies that have made their way to the midline.

    Bottom of turn three - Steel Phalanx

    Luckily for me, Jacqueline is in Loss of Lieutenant due to Hector’s Isolation. Thrasymedes comes around the left building and knocks out my Farzan. Her backline bots roll up into the scoring zone. Phoenix walks out to take on Saladin but gets crit again and dies. Unsure of the points values, and with a table that was difficult to guess the zones, the Myrmidon hacker moves up to secure the midzone, denying me the extra points from the Xenotech.

    We get out the measuring tape and divide up the zones. I have my close zone uncontested. Hector is definitely in the midzone as is my Tuareg and Hafza. The Myrmidon hacker is also in, but only by majority base width. Unfortunately, Hector was already enough points in the midfield, so her hacker was wasted there. In the far zone my two Fidays beat her backfield.

    Conclusion

    6-1 major victory

    Killing the Warcor at the start stopped her placing the Multiscanner and getting the midzone bonus, which would have made it 6-4. If she had pulled the hacker back out of the mid zone and into my far zone it would have been a 2-2 draw, so really Jacqueline got the draw, but I was lucky at the end. I look forward to a rematch.

    Things I learnt:
    • Hector and friends are a very solid link.
    • Thorakitais are a really hard link to assassinate with their 360 visors and chain rifles.
    • When defending against Impersonators, don’t leave room for a Fiday to go prone behind someone to hit two models while only being seen by one. Having the Warcor prone would also have prevented this manoeuvre. Presumably she had chosen Sixth Sense instead of the 360 visor, which would have also made me do this without putting the mine down first.
    • I just cannot leave mines next to models when the enemy has a blast weapon, unless I actively want them to die.
    Things I could have done better:
    • I could have sent both Fidays against the Thorakitais and taken out the whole link. If Hector pushed without many orders, I would have had my TO hacker deal with him, then the Ghazis and Libertos. The whole thing about Frontline is letting your opponent come waste orders coming forward just to be killed anyway.
    • I should have chosen Deployment and taken her side of the table. If she really wanted to go second, she could have, and I would have the deployment advantage, and if I went second that’s great too.
    Jacqueline was a great opponent. She constantly put me on the backfoot and managed to keep the pressure on even with having her link team in the deployment zone.

    Round Four - Supplies
    Opponent: Andrew Noakes, Tartary Army Corps
    Table: Downtown

    Supplies
    • Per each controlled box (1 each)
    • If you have more boxes (3)
    • If they have no boxes (2)
    • 2 Classifieds (1 each)

    Noakes, the man, the myth, the legend. He is well known in the Melbourne Infinity scene, being one of the major community leaders and an extremely nice guy. As far as I know he plays all factions and has been in the game since N1. I had always looked forward to getting to face him and was really happy with this chance. This also meant he was likely to know all the tricks I tried, which is itself a trick as now both players have to guess at which level the other is playing. For example, I know he knows I’ve got units in Hidden Deployment. He knows I know he’ll have Sensor everywhere he wants it. The question is then, am I placing the HD units near the Sensor units, or am I placing them far away? If I put them close, he’ll Sensor me and they’ll die, so I can’t do that. Since I can’t do that, he doesn’t need to waste the order Sensoring. Since he’s not Sensoring, I can put them there after all. I love these kinds of mind games.

    I draw Data Scan and Coup de Grace, both fantastic Classifieds.

    Supplies is a funny mission, with a couple of good ways to win. Taking one box and denying the other two results in a 6-0 major win (plus Classifieds). Taking both boxes, and letting your opponent have one is a 5-1 minor win (plus Classifieds). Denying boxes is generally easier than keeping boxes, so I find it depends on the table which strategy I’d go after.

    I lost the lieutenant roll and he chose to go first, which I would have as well. I took the side with one box extremely well protected, while the other two boxes were open to both of us. Importantly, his middle box didn’t have a great retreat position.

    Tartary Army Corps
    ──────────────────────────────────────────────────

    GROUP 1[​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]6 [​IMG]2 [​IMG]1

    VETERAN KAZAK Lieutenant AP HMG / Heavy Pistol, Knife. (1 | 47)

    LINE KAZAK Missile Launcher / Pistol, Knife. (1.5 | 17)

    LINE KAZAK Paramedic (MediKit) Rifle / Pistol, Knife. (0 | 11)

    LINE KAZAK (Forward Observer) Rifle / Pistol, Knife. (0 | 10)

    LINE KAZAK Rifle / Pistol, Knife. (0 | 9)

    DOG-WARRIOR 2 Chain Rifles, Grenades, Smoke Grenades / AP CCW. (0 | 27)

    ASSAULT PACK . (0 | 25)

    [​IMG] HANDLER Rifle, Smoke Light Grenade Launcher / Pistol, Knife. (- | 10)

    [​IMG] x3 ANTIPODE AP CC Weapon. (- | 15)


    GROUP 2[​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]5 [​IMG]2 [​IMG]1

    STRELOK (Forward Observer) Boarding Shotgun / Pistol, Knife. (0 | 20)

    STRELOK (Forward Observer) Boarding Shotgun / Pistol, Knife. (0 | 20)

    STRELOK K-9 Submachine Gun, Chain-colt, Antipersonnel Mines + 1 K-9 Antipode / Pistol, Knife. (0 | 24)

    [​IMG] K-9 ANTIPODE Trench-hammer, AP CC Weapon. (8)

    DOG-WARRIOR 2 Chain Rifles, Grenades, Smoke Grenades / AP CCW. (0 | 27)

    ASSAULT PACK . (0 | 25)

    [​IMG] HANDLER Rifle, Smoke Light Grenade Launcher / Pistol, Knife. (- | 10)

    [​IMG] x3 ANTIPODE AP CC Weapon. (- | 15)

    SPETSNAZ (CH: Ambush Camouflage) HMG / Pistol, CCW, Knife. (1.5 | 38)

    4 SWC | 300 Points

    Open in Infinity Army

    My thoughts on TAK is that, although there 9 midfield S2 camo markers, guessing what they are isn’t always hard. In Supplies he’s going to have an FO on at least two boxes, and the Strelok camo maker means one is not a specialist. When the order count arrives at the start of his turn, you can figure out how many real troops there are. In this game, he’s not going to put any unit on a rooftop as he needs the mobility to chase down my boxes, so all the camo markers above ground must be Ambush Camo and can be ignored.

    [​IMG]

    This photo is taken from my opponent’s side so all the rights and lefts mentioned next are switched, sorry.

    Deployment

    He splits his forces, putting an Antipode Pack, a Dog Warrior, and a FO Strelok on each flank. In the left corner goes his link team, and the right gets the extra Strelok. His Spetsnaz takes the middle.

    Top of turn one - TAK

    I aggressively place my minelaying Fiday in a spot that has a shotgun shot onto two Antipodes and three members of his link, including his likely Lieutenant (the Vet Kazak HMG, which admittedly does have NWI and Shock Immunity). This forces his Dog Warrior to come around and throw smoke on the Fiday, allowing his Antipodes to form a ring, trapping the poor Impersonator in Camo markers. It also forces his link to move away from the Fiday, as there is a chance I’ll get the shotgun templates or mines onto them, or even survive the Antipodes and come a’killing.

    [​IMG]

    His Strelok with Antipode come around into the right building, staying out of mine range by half an inch. She drops a mine to guard the objective and continues to the corner.

    The link team avoids confronting the Djanzaban sniper (Hafza FO) due to the extreme range bands and takes residence in a left back tower. They fail some Discovers against Al-Djabel in the middle, and knock out my flash-pulse bot.

    His midfield Antipodes come towards Al-Djabel and the midfield objective, one of them getting discovered by a Ghazi.

    Bottom of turn one - Haqq

    A Ghazi charges the right Strelok, and after a few orders whiffing around is killed, taking the Antipode out but not the minelayer. My Libertos runs out, dodging with Hyperdynamics against the mine, but instead dies to my dismay.

    Another Ghazi gets smoke onto the midfield, so my Tuareg AHD can appear and steal the objective on his second try. He pulls back, dropping mines on the way, to go into Suppressive Fire with his Hafza buddy in my backfield in cover. It wasn’t much of a turn, but it’s honest work.

    Top of turn two - TAK

    His right Dog Warrior charges into the right building to chase my Tuareg but eats a mine and transforms. This means he’s too big to fit through the closest door, so he has to run back out the way he came and come around the side. He smokes the corner, then runs out into twin Suppressive Fires and gets his second smoke down. This gets him through smoke, so when he leaps out at the end he reaches base to base with the Tuareg. My hacker dodges, just trying to burn orders and stay alive, while the Hafza uses Suppressive Fire. The Dog splits his chain rifles, and takes two wounds from the Hafza, going unconscious. My hacker, the Hafza and the nearby baggage bot all save against the chain rifles and I breathe a great sigh of relief.

    The left Dog Warrior comes around the building, eating the mine and transforming. The now enraged Dog jumps past the Farzan and Hunzakut on a beeline to Saladin. I take shots and he chain rifles, the Farzan getting one wound through but the Hunzakut going unconscious. The Dog leaps up to Saladin and tries to get him, but he dodges, and the Farzan doesn’t wound. He attacks again, Saladin dodges and the Farzan whiffs. He moves into CC with Saladin, who takes one wound and is now in NWI.

    His link shoots out my Djanbazan sniper (Hafza FO).

    He pulls his right FO Strelok around into the building and crawls in front of the objective but doesn’t have the orders to get it and get to safety, so stays in camo. His right Strelok puts a mine on the right objective.

    His Antipodes come around into the midfield after recamoing.

    Bottom of turn two - Haqq

    I can’t see a way to save Saladin, so he just stays wrestling the werewolf and I’ll let Noakes spend Orders on his turn getting the kill in.

    I want to rush one of the objectives and put mines down, but don’t have good options. There aren’t any other specialists on the right flank, so I’m happy to trade Al-Djabel for his FO and deny the box. The assassin walks up and vaults a container, to stand looking through the window at the camo’d FO Strelok next to the right objective. He then Discover+Shoots and shotguns the FO dead, with no AROs from the Ambush Camo markers guarding the rooftops. The Antipodes dodge into Engage range, which means I’m in Engage range too if they try to go for my Tuareg AHD.

    I reveal my Tuareg Doc+ and go for the right objective but can’t get a good spot where I won’t be seen by his link. I end up rifling an Antipode, putting some mines down and hunkering in a spot to slow the Antipodes should they charge for my box.

    My Tuareg AHD Datascans the unconscious Dog Warrior, then gives him a Coup de Grace for two Classifieds.

    Top of turn three - TAK

    His left Dog Warrior kills Saladin then makes his way back to take out the Farzan, but dies enroute.

    His left Strelok FO rounds the corner to the Farzan, 6 inches from the objective. I have three choices here: drop a mine to physically block the path and make him waste orders dodging next time, shotgun him, or engage. Noakes picks up his Classifieds to remind himself what they are, which reminds me that he might try to Forward Observe me for the Classified. That means I have to shoot or engage, so I shoot. I crit on a 12, and my left flank is secure.

    Without any other better option, he breaks his link, running his paramedic across the board to the right. He shoots Al-Djabel in the back, then legs it to grab the right objective, with just enough orders to get back into total cover.

    Bottom of turn three - Haqq

    I’m in Loss of Lieutenant, which is always a bit unfortunate for the final turn. I have two Command Tokens, and three orders in my main pool. The baggage bot in the other pool has nothing to do.

    We both have one box, but I’ve got two Classifieds while he has none, so I’m at a minor win. If I can kill his paramedic or grab the other box I’ll have a major win. If I run out and get Forward Observed, we might tie. With only three orders I am not confident about even reaching LoF to the paramedic, and certainly not to the left box, so I just burn the orders and we call the game.

    Weeks later, I learnt that Forward Observing is not an ARO skill so I wouldn’t have had to worry about any of that and could have tried for either box, but I don’t think I was close enough anyway.

    Conclusion

    3-1 minor win

    Things I learnt:
    • Veteran Kazaks are Veteran, so immune to Isolated. Their profiles don’t mention E/M immunity, so I don’t think they are, but since they are Hacking Immune it doesn’t make much sense why they would be vulnerable to E/M.
    • Dog Warriors are great, but not the most reliable. Grenades are great on PH 16, but you can’t use them when you get too close (due to the template hitting yourself) so you’re relying on twin Chain Rifles, which are only a 42% chance to wound a dodging PH10 ARM1 model.
    • Forward Observe cannot be used in ARO (just like Spotlight).
    Things I could have done better:
    • I probably should have had my Tuareg Doc+ on either flank instead of the middle. I didn’t think Noakes would Sensor anywhere first turn, as placing a mine is just as good a defence against HD, and only a crazy aggressive player would put a Hidden Deployment unit in front of an Antipode Assault Pack :P
    • A second Djanzaban would have been better than the Asawira, as it might have discouraged his Dog Warrior attack. On the other hand, it reduced the likelihood he thought I would have an HD unit on that objective as well, which I did.
    It was great to finally get a game against Noakes. I had a wonderful game and look forward to a rematch. As per his reputation, I found him very nice to play against, and incredibly sharp, understanding and catching onto everything I was doing. Luckily, the dice were on my side for a few key moments and that got me the game.

    Round Five - Firefight
    Opponent: Alistair, French
    Table: Corporate blocks

    Firefight
    • Kill more Specialists (1)
    • Kill more Lts (2)
    • Kill more Army Points (3)
    • Get more Panoply items (1)
    • Kill the Datatracker (1) – we forgot about nominating one
    • 2 Classifieds (1 each)

    One of my Classifieds was to hack the HVT, the other was impossible so I was going for Secure the HVT.

    Firefight to me is all about going first and alpha striking, then being dug in and trading up with mines and Ghazis.

    I lost the Lieutenant roll and Alistair chose to go first. I took the side of the table with the multi-level building, which turned out to be unimportant to his attack style, but at least denied him the vertical advantage for his sniper.

    Force de Réponse Rapide Merovingienne
    ──────────────────────────────────────────────────

    GROUP 1[​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]9 [​IMG]1 [​IMG]1

    MÉTRO HMG / Pistol, Knife. (0.5 | 19)

    MÉTRO Paramedic (Medikit) Rifle / Pistol, Knife. (0 | 10)

    MÉTRO Paramedic (Medikit) Rifle / Pistol, Knife. (0 | 10)

    MÉTRO Rifle / Pistol, Knife. (0 | 8)

    MÉTRO Lieutenant Rifle / Pistol, Knife. (0 | 8)

    ZOUAVE Rifle + Light Grenade Launcher / Pistol, Knife. (1 | 20)

    DOZER (Traktor Mul Control Device) Rifle, D-Charges / Pistol, Knife. (0 | 14)

    TRAKTOR MUL Katyusha MRL / Electric Pulse. (1 | 11)

    EQUIPE MIRAGE-5 . (2 | 69)

    [​IMG] MARGOT AP Rifle + Light Grenade Launcher / Pistol, Knife. (37)

    [​IMG] DUROC 2 Chain Rifles, Grenades, Smoke Grenades / AP CC Weapon. (32)


    GROUP 2[​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]6

    ZOUAVE (Sapper) Sniper Rifle / Pistol, Knife. (0.5 | 25)

    PARA-COMMANDO (Forward Observer) Rifle / Pistol, Knife. (0 | 21)

    CHASSEUR (Minelayer) Rifle, Light Flamethrower, Antipersonnel Mines / Pistol, Knife. (0.5 | 20)

    CHASSEUR (Minelayer) Rifle, Light Flamethrower, Antipersonnel Mines / Pistol, Knife. (0.5 | 20)

    CHASSEUR (Forward Observer) Rifle, Light Flamethrower, Antipersonnel Mines / Pistol, Knife. (0 | 20)

    CHASSEUR (Forward Observer) Rifle, Light Flamethrower, Antipersonnel Mines / Pistol, Knife. (0 | 20)

    6 SWC | 295 Points

    Open in Infinity Army

    [​IMG]

    This photo is also taken from my opponent's side, so all the rights and lefts are switched again.

    Deployment

    His Metro link went in the right corner, with the sniper watching the left mainstreet. His Chasseurs spread across the midline.

    I put most of my stuff in the left corner, then the real Saladin in the right corner being guarded by the Krakot and the Naffatun. I severely underestimated the reach of speculative fire in this mission.

    Top of turn one - French

    Seeing what he has deployed, you know that there are multiple drop troops in bound as Ariadne don’t have TO or Holoprojectors. My guess was Margot + Duroc, and a Paratrooper, but I didn’t actually know how much French troops cost so wasn’t sure.

    To start, he walks Margot on my left flank and WIP rolls my HVT. It turns out she’s classed as a Heavy Infantry, despite having only 3 ARM, one Wound with no Dogged or NWI. She Speculative Fires on my left Saladin who dodges and survives, but it reveals he’s a Hafza. I probably should have just let the grenades fall unopposed to preserve the illusion. Alistair then walks on Duroc from my right side, who starts running up towards the real Saladin. I decide to protect Saladin by revealing both Al-Djabel and the Tuareg AHD to shoot, but they both die and only one wound gets through on Duroc. He then super-jumps onto Saladin’s building, and after a few orders kills him. In hindsight, I probably should have not revealed either, and let Saladin die as it wasn’t really that big a deal to be in Loss of Lieutenant as I was confident I was going to kill his lieutenant next turn, even with only 1-5 orders.

    Some of his midfielders shuffle about and put down mines, which tells me which of his camo markers are FOs, and therefore Specialists worthy of being hunted down.

    Bottom of turn one - Haqq

    Loss of Lieutenant in the first turn of Firefight doesn’t feel great, but I’m not giving up yet. I had very aggressively deployed my Fiday on his link, with view to one Metro and I’ll be able to catch two more in the shotgun blast, one of which I expect is his lieutenant. I take the shot and put down two. Another shot takes out the survivor, but luckily not the unconscious guy next to the Fiday who is protecting him from the Katyusha’s blast-only weapon.

    The Ghazis isolate Margot and put pressure on the left Chasseurs. The Naffatun takes a shot at Duroc but doesn’t wound and the beast drops prone on the building out of LoF. My Krakot moves up a bit, putting pressure on the midfield.

    Top of turn two - French

    Now he’s in Loss of Lieutenant. He spends a bunch of command tokens to successfully root out the Fiday. Duroc attacks the Krakot, who Berserks in response, but Duroc survives and the Renegade does not. His paramedic tries to revive a downed link team member but kills him instead.

    Bottom of turn two - Haqq

    A Ghazi makes it to midfield and trades for his Zouave light grenade launcher and a mine.

    My left Ghazi gets into the flank, tanking a flamer to kill an FO Chasseur, then Margot, then the last FO. After the flamer hit failed his units started dodging, so I started pistoling and managed to get the shots through.

    I don’t have the position or orders to bring my Ragik on yet and can’t really remember what my main group did this turn so I guess it wasn’t much.

    Top of turn three - French

    We’re even for Lieutenant kills and he’s out of speculative fire options, so now he just needs to secure a point advantage, grab any Classifieds and plunder the Panoplies.

    His minelayer Chasseur and a para-commando open the right Panoply and get into defensive positions defending it. His paramedic continues reading from the Pano medical field journal and kills another of his link members.

    Bottom of turn three - Haqq

    My left Ghazi kills a baggage bot in the far back corner, then the other two smoke the left Panoply before grabbing some goodies to even the score - getting a second Chain Rifle and a Panzerfaust, but they don’t have the orders to use them.

    My Hafza uses his lieutenant order to stand up and take a shot at the Para-Commando, critting the Frenchie. I think the new command suited him well.

    At this point we’ve got even equal Lieutenant kills and Panoply items, I’ve killed more Specialists thanks to the Chasseur FOs, but he’s got a Classified so we’re dead even. I need to ensure more Army Points kills, get Secure the HVT, and/or kill his Lieutenant. I’m not sure about Army Points as I have no idea what the French are worth, especially with Duroc still alive. I can walk the Ragik on for Secure the HVT, but then I won’t be able to get his Lieutenant.

    I decide to go for the risky major win instead of the guaranteed minor. I walk the Ragik in his deployment zone and take out the paramedic after two orders. I’ve got two orders left, but the Katyusha has DA ammo and the paramedic previously killed the unconscious model who was protecting me from it. I can either put one order on the Katyusha, then one on the Lt Metro, or try for both on the Metro and take the Katyusha unopposed. I decide to trust in Dogged and go for both shots on the Metro. The Ragik runs out in true Hassassin style, ignoring the danger, and hits twice on the Metro with his shotgun. One roll is saved, the other fails and the Metro is down. Unfortunately, the Ragik eats the DA from the Katyusha and dies, trading his life for the cause.

    Conclusion

    6-1 major win

    If the Ragik had died without killing the Metro, I would have lost 4-1. Another game decided by the last die roll!

    Things I learnt:
    • Speculative Fire measures from base to base as the crow flies, so hiding in a room on a building with the doorway behind you doesn’t help at all.
    • French have gross Speculative Fire ability.
    • Margot is a HI.
    • Katyusha only have a blast option, so you can prevent it from firing by with using Civilians, enemy models or Impersonators.
    • I don’t enjoy being shot at with Speculative Fire very much.
    Things I could have done better:
    • I could have brought 3 Saladins and have the Hafzas just stand there and not dodge. This would have wasted extra orders before he found the real one as some of his shots were only hitting on 7s or so.
    • I should have kept Al-Djabel and the Tuareg hidden, and just let Saladin die. They would have done a lot more work in my turns 2 and 3, and I didn’t need the orders in my turn 1 as I was going to assassinate his Lt anyway (meaning his turn 2 was just as much as waste as my turn 1).

    Overall

    In the end I had two major victories and three minors, collecting a measly 26/50 OP and 805/1500 VP. This put me 4th overall, as the first and second placed players had five and four major victories respectively. The next player in the list who had OP as low as mine was Alistair, my opponent in the final round, who came 18th. It just goes to show minor victories don’t win you tournaments, but they can certainly place you high up.

    All of my matches were tight battles, and all of my opponents were great fun to play with. Many times it came down to the last dice roll and I was very fortunate to get the wins I did. I couldn’t have asked for a more enjoyable tournament and hope to come back again. I have now moved to Germany, however, so may not get back to Cancon again but I look forward to discovering the Infinity scene here.

    I hope you’ve enjoyed sharing about my experiences. If you have any thoughts about the games, the lists, the choices we made, or my writing style please drop a reply below.

    Thanks for reading!
     
    Xeurian, Barrogh, Aemaru and 27 others like this.
  2. Tongfa

    Tongfa proudly selling out since 1991

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    Thanks for the write-up. It's gratifying that in this Post-VIRD world of mixed links and viciously points-efficient AROs that the humble rifle-based armies still stack up and hold their own.
     
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  3. Themailedfist

    Themailedfist New Member

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    This was very likely the best Infinity tournament report I’ve ever read. Hugely appreciate the effort you put into this to educate and entertain. Thank you!
     
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  4. Capo.Paint

    Capo.Paint Member

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    Thank you very much for this report and the idea behind your lists! For me, it fits perfectly in my thoughts about playing vanilla Haqqislam. I was not sure, if this way to play is possible, but you proofed it.
    Is there a chance to meet you on any german tournament this year, to have a little chat about the details of your playstyle?
     
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  5. oldGregg

    oldGregg Well-Known Member

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    Congrats @Jonno and well done!

    I took the time to read through this more than once. I really appreciate the insights you provided, and I must say it wouldn't feel out of place stickied over on the Haqq subforum. I think this will be a great resource for newer players who are looking to make a step up to more competetive play.
     
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  6. MicroWarp

    MicroWarp Active Member

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    Superb.
     
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  7. SirGrumpyPants

    SirGrumpyPants A little grumpy

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    Your battle reports make me want to play Haqq...
     
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  8. Solar

    Solar Well-Known Member

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    I would very much like to subscribe to your newsletter, sir!
     
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  9. M0rk4

    M0rk4 New Member

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    Amazing bat rep, I've learn a lot as an Haqq player here.

    Thank you for this contribution :)
     
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  10. ChoTimberwolf

    ChoTimberwolf Artichoken Friend

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    Welcome to Germany we got quite an active Infinity community here too so have fun ;)
     
    Jonno likes this.