A bit of an unusual blog post here – rather than the usual tournament report, this was a tournament which I was running – so while I can’t give a round-by-round breakdown, I can at least detail some of what went on for the day!
Pigfinity was dreamed up by myself and current Pigmar Wargaming Club Chairman Jez in 2014 to run on the same weekend as the Wargamers All Against Cancer event which was organised by Dave Wilkinson. Dave’s plan was to have 24 hours of sponsored wargaming to raise money for the Macmillan Cancer Support Group, and last year was so successful in raising money that he decided to do it again this year, so we decided to do the same. You can still donate to this year’s fund by visiting Dave’s JustGiving page here: www.justgiving.com/waac2015.
This year I offered to run Pigfinity, which was definitely a learning experience for me as I’ve never run such a large event. I’d like to think that things went smoothly for all parties, despite a couple of minor hiccups with table allocation in the second and third rounds.
I’d promoted the event as best I could via forums and various forms of social media/Infinity podcasts, and was pleased that I was able to hit the full capacity of 20 players – it was looking to be a relatively small event at first, with only 10 players signed up, but a last minute flood of entrants meant we had a full hall with entrants coming from as far away as Middlesborough! This in itself presented its own problems in terms of populating 10 tables full of suitable terrain – Infinity is such a terrain-dependant game that you can’t just ‘get by’ with a couple of pieces of terrain per table like you can in other systems. Thankfully, with the Infinity community being on the smaller side and being as awesome as it is, there were more than enough offers from players to bring terrain with them on the day that we actually had more terrain than required!
I’d managed to rope in Darren and Adam to help me set up in the morning, and so we arrived at the venue about an hour early – to my great surprise a number of attendees had also arrived early, and they were more than happy to help us get set up, so we were pretty much ready for the proposed 10am start. I ended up delaying the start by a few minutes to allow for a few late arrivals, however. Not surprising with the rail engineering works going on that weekend, and the lack of decent, nearby parking in Bath.
Here’s are pictures of the tables as they were laid out at the start of the day:
The missions I’d chosen for this event were Supplies, Supremacy and Highly Classified.
Supplies is a fairly simple mission as far as ITS goes, and it’s been one of my favourites since I started playing Infinity, so I wanted to see it played. Supremacy is a well-liked mission by many players too, and so that went in as well, as I figured it would ease the list-building process for players, since you can likely get away with the same list for both missions if you’re clever with your selection. Highly Classified was the ‘odd one out’ mission for this – I’d played it before at the Totally Crit Open 2 back in May, and really enjoyed the mission for its ‘unknown’ quantity for the mission objectives, and since it’s not played that often at other tournaments as far as I could see, I decided to include it in this event.
I was quite pleased that rules queries during games were few and far between, with many players chipping in to answer questions many times when they heard a query on a neighbouring table. It’s clear to me though that time limits do seem to be an issue at many Infinity tournaments, and this was certainly evident at Pigfinity. With all the options available to players, it can lead to some very deliberate thinking as they work out the sequence of their orders and what they plan to do from turn to turn, which can be problematic when there’s a time limit to adhere to. When timetabling the day I’d opted to go with 2 hour rounds, as I felt this was ample time to get the games done, and for the most part this held true, although there were a number of games in each round that ran over. I’d factored in a contingency to allow for some overtime in each round, although for Round 3 I was forced to call time on due to some players who had train/bus schedules to stick to, and I wanted to make sure everyone saw the winners presentation.
I’ve often wondered how to solve the time limit issue – in the majority of cases, 2 hours is more than enough to play a game of Infinity, although increasingly I notice that there are games taking far longer. I’ve toyed with the idea in the past in smaller, internal club events with imposing the threat of both parties getting zero points if they don’t get their game concluded within the time limit, although sadly this is also open to abuse. A player could potentially bring down their opponent’s score if the game isn’t going their way with deliberate slow play. I guess the only thing TOs can do is badger players to get a move on and get a reasonable conclusion to the game within the allotted time.
Because I’m a big proponent of the hobby as a whole, I also decided to use the Hobby Scoring Extra from the ITS rules – the rules for this (taken directly from the ITS rules document) are as follows:
In tournaments played with this Extra, players who have all their models painted will earn more Rank points.
In addition, once the tournament is finished, the Organizer will pick the three best painted armies. Once the Organizer sends the tournament report, those players will earn an additional amount of Rank Points according to their position.
I think this really helps encourage the hobby as a whole and rewards those who have put the effort in to have a fully painted force. While not everyone will agree with that viewpoint, I decided to go with it.
During the lunch break I also held a painting competition and let the players vote for best painted – I’ll also use the scores from this to determine the three best painted armies. I figure it’s better to let the players do it than leave it to the opinion of the TO alone!
The entries were as follows:
In terms of the overall breakdown of forces on the day, the choices were as follows:
1 Aleph, 2 Combined Army, 7 Haqqislam, 1 Imperial Service, 1 Military Orders, 2 Nomads, 1 Qapu Khalqi, 1 Steel Phalanx, 1 Tohaa and 3 Yu Jing.
20% sectorials, and a third of the field playing Haqqislam!
So, with all the waffle I’ll get to the bit that most of you are here for – the end results:
Congratulations to Rob, Robin and Darren on first, second and third place, and to Robey for his fantastically painted Haqqislam which won the Painting competition!
It just remains for me to thank everyone for their donation to the fund and to the guys who helped out with set up, set down, and for providing extra terrain on the day – without you guys on hand it wouldn’t have gone half as smoothly as it did!
I’ll leave you with a link to a gallery of shots taken throughout the day – Pigfinity 2015 images