Infinity – How much terrain do you need?

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Terrain plays an extremely important part in Infinity, but how much do you need and how should you set your table up? Lets take a look…

How much terrain do you need?

If you are new to Infinity then there is one aspect of the game that you really (really!) need to wrap your head around. Terrain and table set up. It’s so important it’s in bold, see. It’s so vital that Corvus Bellis Bostria has made videos, and posts about how to set up your table. I’ll be pulling pearls of wisdom from his teachings, as well as showing off some of the superb tables from the Infinity community.

In most games terrain plays somewhat of a background role, to give the odd bit of cover and maybe a thematic feel. Its a background singer. But with Infinity the terrain is a part of the story, it’s a player, it has a significant role to play.

The range on most guns in the game is loooong, and they are deadly. No foam bullets that vanish after a few inches here. So terrain is important to keep your band of Black Op bad asses alive long enough to achieve their objective.

So what are we looking at here?

1) You will need terrain that totally obscures models, including big bad TAGS. Look for 4″ or more in height, specially in the middle of the table.
2) Start with around 8 buildings, or blocks of terrain of differing size.
3) You will need scatter terrain that partially covers a model so they can shoot over or around it. Pew! Pew! Barrels, crates, and barriers etc.

Lets see what that may look like using Bostrias diagram of an open table:

We have some great terrain that blocks line of fire here, but there is still some pretty big fire lanes that are dangerous to those that value their heads. So we will need more…

While this table looks good, it has a problem. It’s too balanced. Say what?? If the table has a symmetric display of terrain, the decision between having the first turn or choosing where to deploy doesn’t have the same tactical value.Your enemy will probably have a deployment area as good as yours, that is not cool.

Try and lose your balance, to get your balance

So to make a more interesting set up, it’s better to create some imbalance and make the decision to take initiative or deployment an important one. Lets take a looksie at a good and interesting table layout:
We can see that the red deployment side is filled with cover and has an elevated sniper tower, while blue is open and risky. So the guy that goes second is most probably going to have more cover, protection and ARO vantage points. So through imbalance we have created…balance. Ommmmm.
Here is my humble table, which has height, variety and some scatter elements. The collection includes some quality HDF kits, as well as electrical boxes, gum holders and a few home made plasticard buildings. Total cost was around $150.

Sniper vs Chain Rifle, or Cat vs Mouse

The density of a board will also favor certain units over others. An open board will be  heaven for 40-50 point snipers who will have clear open shots to anyone running the gauntlet over open ground. While a clustered maze of buildings will allow 5-10 point Irregulars to close in with damaging template weapons like a chain rifle or flamer. 
So you want to experiment, and see what works best for you and your group. If you feel one type of unit is dominating, then switch up the boards. TAGs in particular can dominate with long range speculative shots from across the board, if you don’t have enough high blocking terrain. No one wants those 3 pointers of doom exploding in their depolyment. So look to block those with good terrain placement.

For example…

With all that in mind, what sort of boards do the Infinity community come up with? There are so many, and these are some of the finest boards I have seen. These guys have gone above and beyond to create fantastic boards that showcase their modeling skills. I hope they don’t mind me showcasing them to the world.

Boards on a budget

But one of the best things about making a board is getting creative. As I mentioned earlier I used electrical boxes that were dirt cheap from a DIY store, and gum holders for silos. You can use anything from shoe boxes to high end HDF pieces. Just look around and see what you can find.

You can also use terrain from other games by applying a few hose rules. Like ruins with the windows boarded up to give more cover, or tree patches that become low vis zones.

But for now here are a few pieces of terrain the community has made from everyday stuff.

So while Infinity does require terrain, you don’t have to break the bank. Just get creative and rummage through the junk, DIY stores and the cupboard. Remember the golden rules of blocking fire lanes, height, scatter terrain and imbalance and you will be good.

What’s your favorite table set up?
What’s the most creative terrain idea you have seen?

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