Fireside Chats: Redundancy and Having a Plan B
Good evening, friends.
In this series of articles, we will explore the advanced topics that will make your game a more enjoyable experience. We will talk about things such as dirty tricks or underhanded tactics but also meta-game elements such as list building. We will try to evaluate certain plays and game-play elements, such as TAGs or HI in the ITS environment.
We all know the saying that even a best plan does not survive contact with the enemy. Keeping that in mind, we have to remember that regardless of the tactic of approaching the game that we may have when we approach the table, that tactic will probably have to be updated as the casualties on both sides stack up and as key pieces are removed from play.
Building a good list and playing a decent strategy means that you are ready to accomodate your game taking those changes into consideration. What that means, for example, is that if you are running an MSV2+Smoke combo, you would ideally have at least 2 or 3 models with smoke grenades and hopefully 2 models with MSV2 to take advantage of the combo. Why so many?
It’s simple – because of the crit mechanic. Unlucky crits can turn even the best rambo models into an unconscious casualties. If throwing a smoke grenade down is crucial to your strategy, you should make sure that you will put it down eventually – if not with the first model, then with the second or the third. Several game pieces that perform similar roles should make their way into your list to form a kind of a safety net in case the first pawn fails to produce the desired result.
So, for example, if you are running Inferior Infiltration and/or Minelayers, you probably want at least 2 or 3 of each, in order to maximise confusion as you are playing against the odds. Putting only 1 Inferior Infiltrator on the table and failing the roll means that this part of your strategy is essentially removed from play. Having 3 of the same Infiltrators means that there’s a decent chance of being able to use at least one of them.
That said, it’s always good to have a plan B. A back-up plan is always best thought of during the list creation process. When chosing which pieces go into the list, ask yourself the question of what happens if key elements get K.O’d during the fight. If you lose your Intruder, do you still have a model with long range weaponry, or will you have to rely on Rifles? Maybe including an infiltrator, such as a Prowler or a Bandit would be a good idea for such an occassion? Or maybe a second HMG carried by an Alguacile platform? How unlucky can you be, right?
Most of the decisions in Infinity are taken during the game itself – e.g whether to dodge or shoot back as ARO, whether to focus on objectives or maybe do more damage to the enemy. However, doing your homework and actually thinking about the game before it even starts will help you in coming up with a general outline of how to approach a given problem.
All that said, even the best plans and back-up contingencies will sometimes fail. When that is the case, you should not despair, for as long as there is light, there is hope. There are two things that you can do after all your heavy hitters are removed from play.
One approach is to focus on objectives, if you haven’t done that already – there’s a high probability that if the battle was bloody, your oponent is also down a couple notches on the amount of tricks he has got left. A better approach, however, would be to secure some easy objectives first and only then start shooting the enemy. I know, however, that it is not always possible. Second approach is to remember that you still have the most potent weapon in your arsenal, the (Combi)Rifle. The Rifle does not cost any SWC and rolls 3 dice when shooting. This means that by clever positioning and maximizing your modifiers while minimising those of your enemy, you can still have a decent chance of fighting even Camouflaged enemies or Heavy Infantry.
Remember that the expert in battle moves the enemy, but is not moved by him. If you spoil your enemy’s plan while simultaneously working your own, even through backup pawns, you will be victorious. Let us know what your plan B is in the comments below!