As my regular readers will know; I’m on the hunt for a new game system. Not that I probably need one. But Ever since I decided to take a (zero gravity moon) step away from Games Workshop I feel like an Amish kid on Rumspringa . There’s a whole world of wargaming out there that I’ve heard tell of, but shied away from because I was firmly rooted in the cult.
Well no longer. I still play 40k, I still play Mordheim and (if I could find someone to play) I still be playing Gothic too.
I’ve branched out into Spartan Games’ Firestorm Armada and Dystopian Wars. I’ve also found it a lot easier to write Project Awesome now I’m not buried up to my eyes in the 40k Universe. It’s a little like, I imagine, coming out the other side of an addiction.
But I still want to find another game system with a comparably rich background because that’s very important to me and it’s something that Project Awesome will have in spades. Because the more awesome crammed into something the more fun the gamers can have, especially when it comes to campaigns. At least that’s how I feel anyway.
So I briefly looked at Warmachine but scrubbed it for three reasons.
1. The models, although were good, completely failed to reach down my trousers and fiddle with my hobby spot.
2. I didn’t like the idea of Steampunk & Fantasy colliding in a big sticky mess.
3. The Warjacks. Every army has one. They all look roughly the same and they’re steam-driven, magical dreadnoughts.
No. No no no no NO!
I’d like to be clear; I don’t hate Fantasy as a genre. I hate how creators of Fantasy go straight to the middle ground and justify anything mental by just saying it’s magic. Project HellsYeah which I shall be embarking upon after Project Awesome will be a Fantasy game with NO magic at all. And if there is then you can simply punch me in my face.
And now time for me to get to the point. A couple of my loyal friends on Twitter – and also proud members of The Shell Case forum (hint hint) play Infinity: The Game and so I thought I’d check it out.
Now, correct me if I’m wrong, but it’s produced in Spain, which surprised me. Not because I didn’t think the Spanish were capable or that they could afford it (topical!) but writing wargames has always, for me, been a terribly British thing to do. I know Privateer is American but they are descended from us anyway so it’s fine. The British were the inventors of modern warfare along with the machine gun and anthrax so it stands to reason that we come up with all the cool wargames.
The thing that struck me about Infinity is that it’s very ‘Manga’. At least the artwork is which makes it rather hard to know what to expect when you then move on to the models which are, to put it bluntly; lovely. They’re well sculpted and well cast. The only thing I don’t like is how unbelievably bright they’ve all been painted. First rule of model painting is always paint them a shade darker because by the time the varnish goes on it’ll look about right. But maybe it’s just a very happy bright universe, but then surely the ‘war’ part of wargaming would seem rather redundant.
As I understand it, Infinity is a futuristic skirmish game using primarily special ops units and the like which, as a concept, I kinda like. I like technology, I like elite forces (Space Marine player) and I like a real variety of models (are you listening Privateer). Although the pricing is a little steep. A starter force of 15 ‘man sized’ models and a big beasty for Panoceanic (who look awesome) is £80! Which is, to be honest, is rather a lot. Even the money-grubbing bastards at the Games Workshop, I’d like to think, would blanch at charging that much.
The Cutter, shown above, is awesome. It reminds me of Probotector and for that reason alone I want it. But at £28 it needs to be as big and as awesome as Space Marine dreadnought. I really like the look of this game but I’d have to think long and hard before I take the leap. The same money as the Panoceanic starter set will buy you a Space Marine battle force and a box of Finecast Sternguard Veterans. That’s 30 bods & a Rhino. I know metal is more expensive, but the point is it’s a skirmish game but it just seems not a lot of juice for the squeeze.
Fact is that what I’m looking for is something that’s different but still offers the quality I’ve come to expect from wargaming which Infinity has in spades. The scenery is my kind of futuristic too and it’s also something that can be played in an evening. And I mean an evening, not the wee hours.
This clearly needs further investigation…