Thursday, 29 September 2011

Roland asks, Ven answers: Infinity Army Building

Roland Durendal of 3++ fame asked me to have a look at some of his army lists..the easiest way to respond to these, rather than in long winded comment form, was to post up a new article for them.
I fully take on board that this post has a very limited appreciation level, Infinity in general not being anywhere near as widely spread as 40K. However, what the readers want, the readers get…and yes, that means more 40K in the very near future.

So onto Roland’s lists. He has provided 5 lists, but as I am myself still new to the game, I will keep my responses fairly short to each as I have yet to develop a real depth of tactical awareness and list building skills.

In addition, I think it is really important that we note, straight away, that the golden rule in Infinity army building is this:

“It’s not what you bring, it’s how you use it”

Every unit in Infinity has a use and can be used to lethal effect. Whilst there are some units that seem over costed for what they add to the force, they can still be used effectively. But of course, 40K philosophy tells us that this is not an efficient use of points!

Included below each army is the code for inputting into the Online Infinity Army Builders.

Merovingian List 1 or How the French Army Rolls…

Here it is for those that can’t be arsed… So what do I think, what can we say to Roland…

10 orders, this is a decent amount of the finite resource used to activate models. This’ll give Roland the option to power up any given model in any given situation as and when it is required.

With regard to flexibility, it is not just having a good number of orders that creates this – with the French, it is the different deployment options.

The Zouave’s have ‘Mechanised Deployment’ which allows them to essentially infiltrate up to the half way line of the table. But they have to be within 8” of the first Zouave placed, however, this still creates a very wide coverage net.

We then have the Chasseurs who can infiltrate normally up to half way. These guys are all equipped with Anti-Personnel Mines, one of whom is a Minelayer meaning he can place one mine before the game begins in his 8” Zone of Control. It’d be useful to combine this with the Sapper Zouave, who will be dug in and doesn’t really want to move – so protect him from assault and close range template death with a net of anti-personnel mines. In addition, setting this net up will slow the advance of the enemy, granting more time for the HMG Moblot and Sniper Rifles to plink away at range before having to close with anyone.

The odd ones out in this list? The 112 (Emergency Services i.e. Doctor) is an odd one out because he can’t deploy abnormally. Ideally, he’d stay back in your deployment zone, not venturing out of his LOF blocking terrain until someone goes ‘man down’, then it’s time to leg it up field and try and heal up the wounded dude.

The Loup Garou also has no funky deployment options, however, given his X-Visor and the naturally long ranged Sniper Rifle, he wants to sit back at the most extreme effective range (around 36” – 52”) where he will still not have any range modifiers.

However, this dude is pretty much the only issue I have with this list. The build of the Loup Garou is clearly for extreme range fire support. Unfortunately, the terrain for Infinity is all about blocking terrain, densely packed no more than a 5” – 10” apart. Across such long range as the Loup Garou is designed for there will be numerous sight blockages (crap term I know but I couldn’t think of how else to describe it…it’s been a long day), reducing his effectiveness in this role.

On the other hand, if the Sniper weapon was replaced with a Viral Rifle, then not only can the short to medium range of this weapon be maximised by the X-Visor, but the lethality of the Loup Garou remains intact. Viral weaponry is easily as deadly, if not more deadly than the regular Sniper. The Viral ammunition type requires a saving throw based on the BTS stat rather than the ARM stat. BTS is Bio Technological Shielding and on most units, the value is 0. Only superior Heavy Infantry units in powered armour (with closed environments such as Astartes Power Armour) have any real BTS. Viral ammo also requires 2 rolls to be made versus each wound taken. Viral ammo ignores Dogged (a special skill that can keep a model up and running even after taking wounds) and makes a model pass immediately to Dead, meaning there is no opportunity for a Doctor to heal the model as it is Unconscious.

In addition the use of the Loup Garou in a more midfield role allows you to capitalise on another amazing piece of wargear – Flash Grenades. Successfully hitting a group (screw it, or even one) of enemy models with a Flash Grenade explosion means that they can generate no ARO’s against your models and they automatically fail their Guts! Roll.

Mero List 5 ("Legion" Linked 2):

I like the concept, but I think with 2 teams you need quite a lot of orders, Team 1 will be very tight on Orders because the Para Commando’s wont add their Orders to the group pool until they are on the table, leaving the guys on the board with very little they can do. The maxed out Loup Garou Link Team is sweet and so so deadly, but again only has 5 Orders available to it.

To be honest, I’d try and fit in more order monkeys. You have the points to at least just add 1 Metro before even having to make any changes… do so, add it to group 2. Change one of the basic Para’s to 3 regular Metros and generate lots of Orders for your Para’s when they hit the table to cause real disruption… that’s just some thoughts..

Here are the other lists for you all to have a look at, I’ll get to them in another post as I realised this one was becoming a little long, but I’m up for discussing in the comments too.

Mero List 2 (Linked):

Mero List 3 (Linked):

Mero List 4 ("Legion" Linked):
(Not a massive fan…but I’ll get to it soon… !)
Disclaimer: I am a noob myself to Infinity, remember that I am not that shit hot that I can just become an expert overnight!! However, I am basing these thoughts on my actual play experience in the system over armchair general stuff…

Please, please point out if I am wrong on any of these comments!!

Roland, hope this is some of what you were looking for, remember that first point up top though brother, it's not what you bring, it's how you use it!!

Last point - check out the Infinity Forums for the best and broadest knowledge on the game, found here.


  1. Ven: Thanks for all the feedback and help!

    As for List 1: I agree with the Loup-Garou. I initially wanted the Sniper Rifle L-G to add in another ranged Sniper Rifle. But on re-looking at the list, you're right a Viral Rifle for midfield shots is excellent. Having X Visor and no negative modifier for long range and only a -3 for Max range is awesome. Otherwise, I love the Chasseur's, especially the one with Minelayer. Setting up mines and disruption zones is a great defensive maneuver.

    List 2 (i.e. Mero List 5): I also love the Loup-Garou linked team of doom :) I originally planned on having everyone start on the board to give max orders production, and to prevent from suffering from the lack of an LT. I do realize I have points to get a Metro for an extra order which would help the L-G's if I do decide to keep the Para's off at the beginning. I actually hadn't thought of how I'd go about using those last 10pts and adding a Metro seems like a solid idea.

    I like your point about how it's not what you bring but how you use it, as I feel that's a key difference to 40K. It's easier (and seems encouraged) to use a mix-mash of different units here to bolster the overall army's effects. A simple rifle dude bolstered with several orders can become a key unit. Likewise, Linked teams (even a small 3 man one) makes a massive difference in tactics, as you get all the bonuses and can swap around who's the team leader - which if you're like me, you bring around 2 different type dudes in a link team to allow different options to use in a given situation.

    Thanks and I look forward to the rest!

  2. Right the first list is workable for a 250 list, I just think against perhaps some aggressive forces it might be wise not to infiltrate and actually bunker up with mines and try to force your opponents into channels you want. With those snipers that should be possible.

    That second list is an absolute no, no. No where near enough orders to make either group work. Sorry to pimp my blog out on here Ven but I wrote an articles on some basic principles of building Infinity armies here:

    People might find it useful.

  3. Yeah the more I look at list 2...there are things I would probably tweak...notably drop one of the regular L-G from a Viral Rifle to a Boarding Shotgun (saving 2pts), and then dropping the Sniper Para-Commando and replacing it with 3 Metros. This would bump me up to a 6-7 Combat Squad split and orders split. I'd prolly put the Chasseurs into group 2 with the L-G, and the Metros in group 1. That way I could reliably move the L-G (with 7 orders) around as a forward maneuver unit and still have a few orders left to snipe with Chasseur or lay some mines.

    Now that I think of it that could work tactically - the L-G Link team scares people out of cover, Sniper ARO's them, and the other Chasseur protects their flank by dropping mines and clearing people out with the flame thrower.

  4. @Frontline, pimp away brother, pimp away. I did say it was light on orders, glad I was on the right lines...

  5. @Ven Definitely on the right tracks. My 9 rules on Infinity army building aren't the be all and end all but there re some useful pointers. You've picked up in your advice on the obvious and thus the really important things. I wouldn't add much to the advice.