High off of a great NOVA Infinity experience, I was pretty hyped for the Baltimore Brawl. It was a great day of Infinity, though it did end on kind of a rough note.
The Brawl was a single-day, four game event at Games N Stuff in Glen Burnie. I’ve heard lots of great things about GNS as a store, but had never been able to make it up there before.
Google Maps suggested it’d be between an hour and a half and two to get up there, so I left early; unfortunately, I’d mixed up setup times with check-in times and Google was overly pessimistic about the travel time, which meant I got there a good hour and a half or so earlier than I needed to. Chatting outside the store wasn’t a bad way to spend the morning, but I wouldn’t have regretted an extra hour’s sleep.
These were my lists:
I wanted to run the Kriza, but that sucker is so expensive the next thing I knew I was looking at 11 order lists, and at that point it made sense to dial it in to a single, full group. I don’t think I like running things so tight; you have less wiggle room, and if there’s one thing I need, it’s wiggle room. I think my List B shook out to be just a bad list,
Game 1 was against Justin (J-Skewers)’s Qapu Khalqi. I had a great time playing with Justin, but every. single. roll. went my way. When nothing goes wrong, that means everything’s going wrong for your opponent, and having been on the other end of that, I felt pretty bad for him. It didn’t really phase him at all, though. I won this 9-0 without losing a single model.
The most notable moment for me was using the Tsyklon to fire a Pitcher next to Justin’s hacker and then using the Interventor to Isolate, then incapacitate her. I also made the right call with Intelcom and revealing my Hidden Deployed Spektr to push into his sector at the bottom of turn three to eke out dominance by the skin of my teeth.
Game 2 was against John (JBear)’s Hassassin Bahram. I got my clock cleaned pretty thoroughly: where all my rolls went my way in Game 1, they pretty much didn’t go my way in Game 2. I also made a couple of mistakes in terms of positioning, and I made the wrong decision re: going first (which was a theme for the rest of the day). Even though I lost this one 0-10, I had a great time, and came away learning some stuff.
Not much in the way of memorable moments about the game (besides John’s graciousness as he kicked my ass up and down the table). I kept forgetting my Stempler Zond was knocked out. The Kriza performed well, but wasn’t even close to closing any sort of gap.
Game 3 was against Wilson (Masterofmelee)’s Bakunin. Wilson’s one of the top players in the world (we had a couple of those: I think four of the top twenty at the Brawl), and I’d been second guessing this list since I made it, I didn’t expect to do well in the match. I didn’t, but I do think I held my own. I definitely goofed by choosing to not go first. He knocked my teeth in in the first turn, but I was able to bounce back, hold my ground, and squeeze out a couple of OP. Even though I lost this one 2-9, I’m proud of my performance.
In turn one, Wilson used his Morlocks to throw smoke and tear ass down the edge of the board and cover the approach of his Überfallkommando, who nuked my Interventor Lt and Iguana before I knew what was happening, so I started the game in Loss of Lieutenant. After that, though, Kriza Boracs was able to hold the line, my Morans were able to defend themselves against the Morlocks and Zeroes sent against them. What appeared to be an Intruder turned out to be my one specialist: the Bandit Hacker, who was able to nail both Classifieds.
Game 4 was against Chris(?) (Zah90)’s vanilla Haqqislam. This game was brief: again, I made the wrong decision by not going first. He had me in Retreat before my first turn, which was rough, but did mean I didn’t have to wallow in my poor choices for too long. I lost this one 0-1; he’d have likely have gotten 10 OP except he pushed too hard and had me in retreat too soon.
This wasn’t an easy game, but I handled it well, I think. I’m not very good at this game, and when you’re not good, you’re going to have games where you just get the shit beat out of you and you can either roll with it and try to learn something from the experience (I think I did) or you can find a different game to play.
So, I was in a perfectly fine mood (three great games, one learning experience)… until he spun his open bag around and his open bag front swept across my entire army tray. It’s been a couple of days, and just thinking about it now makes my adrenaline race. I still don’t know the full extent of the damage, but he definitely broke two of my S5 remotes: one of them had four pieces broken off, and another had two pieces broken off and one piece actually broken (as in what was cast as one piece is now more than one). I don’t know what, if anything is or isn’t broken. I put everything away as quickly as I could and sat outside counting to 10 for a while.
This sort of thing happens. It’s happened before, it will likely happen again. It’s never not traumatic, though, and the carelessness, the extent of it, and combined with it being done by someone with a bunch of unpainted minis (which, fairly or unfairly equates to “doesn’t give a shit about minis” in my mind) makes it really upsetting. The last time something like this happened to my minis (my fault: I slipped and fell down the stairs carrying my Khornate Daemons), I couldn’t bear to look at them for a year and a half. I need to psyche myself up to look at the damage.
Despite the upsetting end to the day, I had a great time. John Junghans ran a great event, the Infinity community is really the best, healthiest game community I’ve ever experienced. It’s tough to have a bad game of Infinity: I find losing games as or more satisfying than winning games, because I come away knowing a bit more about the game. I can’t not point out that of four opponents, two were painted, two were unpainted and that’s something I’d love to see change: the lack of painting expectation is the greatest flaw with the game.
Anyway, I’ll definitely be back again next year.