Infinity CodeOne is a sci-fi skirmish wargame from Corvus Belli. CodeOne is a streamlined version of their Infinity game and while it includes the core mechanics of Infinity, it has a limited army pool, 8 with the two new factions in this release, and a maximum limit of 10 units in a force. Operation Blackwind is the brand new 2-player starter set for Infinity CodeOne and along with Operation Kaldstrom and Crimson Stone before it, is the quickest way to get into CodeOne.
In this article, we'll have a quick look at CodeOne and talk about the Operation Blackwind boxed set and the forces it contains.
CodeOne is a more beginner-friendly Infinity experience as the limited pool to draw forces from means that there is less to learn for a new player in terms of troops, abilities, and weapons. Games are much faster and take up less space than full games of Infinity. It’s a perfect jumping-in point and if players like CodeOne, they can easily expand their forces out to the full rules. Infinity CodeOne is still a complicated game, so if you're new to wargames, the learning curve can be steep, but the Operation Crimson Stone box guides you through the learning process with some step-by-step tutorial games to the full rules.
What Are The Main Infinity CodeOne Mechanics?
For those new to Infinity, Infinity CodeOne has two core mechanics. The order pool and Automatic Reaction Orders (ARO). Each turn, every unit still standing in your CodeOne force provides an order token. Order tokens are spent to activate your units during your turn and can be allocated to units as you choose. For example, if you have ten orders, they can all be spent to activate a single unit ten times, or split between different units. This gives a lot of flexibility each turn and you can prioritize a goal, and spending orders until it’s achieved.
Automatic Reaction Orders are actions you take during your opponent's turn. They allow units to react to actions made by the enemy, like dodging an attack or shooting in response to an enemy attack or movement. This makes turns very dynamic, and you have to be aware of your opponent’s possible reactions to your actions. If your units move out of cover, which enemy units will be able to fire at them? If you fire at an enemy, will they be able to return effective fire?
Skill tests are taken on D20’s, and require rolling under the attribute being tested. If the enemy reacts to your action, it changes the roll to a face-to-face roll, which means you have to roll under your attribute, but above the enemy's roll to succeed.
What Are The Differences Between Infinity N4 And Infinity CodeOne?
The main difference between Infinity, which had the brand new N4 rules released for it last year, and CodeOne are the forces that are available for it. Infinity N4 has nine main factions, each with several available sub-factions along with a number of Non-Aligned Armies. Each force has a huge selection of units available to it. Infinity CodeOne has six different factions, each with just over twenty units available to them. CodeOne games are limited to ten units, which controls the required table space and the time it takes to play games.
There are some streamlining of rules, but the core difference between N4 and CodeOne is this smaller-scale game, with limited forces. Infinity N4 is well known as a complex game. The simplicity of the core mechanics are followed by a huge learning curve, and this control and limitation of the CodeOne forces makes it a lot more beginner-friendly, whilst keeping the rules that make Infinity what it is.
CodeOne and N4 are entirely compatible, within the CodeOne forces. What this means is that players picking up any CodeOne releases can use those forces in Infinity N4, expanding into a full game when they want to. Infinity CodeOne also has streamlined releases planned, with limited key boxes for each faction, which will make it easier for players to build up their forces. All of the tokens, templates, and dice in the CodeOne boxes are also the same as those used for N4, so once you're ready to upgrade, you can buy the N4 rulebook or download the core N4 rules and you're ready to go.
What Does Infinity Operation Blackwind Contain?
Infinity CodeOne Operation Blackwind contains everything that two players need to start playing. It includes two forces, a Haqqislam force of covert operatives, sent to infiltrate a research facility and its guards, the best troops the alien AI, ALEPH could muster, the Steel Phalanx. Blackwind also includes a scenery pack to represent the Darpan Xeno-Station all the tokens, dice, and measurement tools two players need, and an introductory rulebook, that sets the narrative for the operation and includes five introductory missions that slowly build up the forces and rules, guiding players through their first games.
After players have worked through the introductory booklet, they are free to expand to the full rules, which are available for free download here. Also on that page are the quickstart rules. So if you already own some miniatures, you can give the rules a go straight away to see if you like the system. Infinity CodeOne also has a free army builder, that's available online and in an app that can be used to plan the expansion of your force.
Infinity CodeOne is a fairly brutal game, and your units can be eliminated quickly if left in the open for too long, so ensuring your battlefield has sufficient scenery is essential. Operation Crimson Stone comes with enough scenery to fill the recommended 32x24 inch battlefield and a gaming mat that matches.
The scenery is all solid and extremely durable card, and the four buildings can be built in one of two ways. The scenery slots together, so no glue is required, letting you disassemble it for transport or storage and rebuild when you need them. The two small buildings fit on top of the larger ones if you want to build multi-level terrain and the barriers offer mixed full and partial cover terrain to spread between the buildings.
The Blackwind box includes a token set that has all the tokens you should ever need for CodeOne (and Infinity N4 later on) including templates and measurement sticks. All the tokens are double-sided and include information and modifiers about the condition, which is an incredibly handy addition. All the tokens and templates are the same solid card that the scenery is made from, so they are very hard-wearing.
What Forces Does Operation Blackwind Contain?
Operation Blackwind includes two brand new factions for CodeOne, ALEPH and Haqqislam, which also contain re-released miniatures sectorial sub-factions for Infinity N4, Steel Phalanx, and the Hassassin Bahram.
How Do I Use The Infinity Operation Blackwind Aleph Units?
The Blackwind ALEPH force contains:
- Thorakites - The line troopers of Alpeh's Steel Phalanx force. They come armed with a mix of Nanopulsers and Combi Rifles or SMGs. The SMG profile requires them to get pretty close to be effective, but the AP ammo is helpful. With ARM 3 though, they are quite durable compared to other factions' line troopers.
- Ekdromos Hacker - This profile comes armed with a hacking device and +1B Chain Rifle to deal with anyone who gets too close, which when all their profiles come with Combat Jump, Martial Arts L3, and a CC of 22, you will want to get close to everyone. Oh, and a DA close combat weapon that means anyone hit will have to make 2 saving throws just for fun.
- Agêma Marksman - The Agema is an extremely effective sniper. equipped with an L2 Multispectral Visor, they can catch tricksy enemies trying to hide. Their MULTI Sniper Rifle is effective at longer ranges, so try not to let enemies close the distance. Their weapon can be fired in 2 modes either in Burst 2 AP, or Burst 1 DA (which causes the target to make 2 saving throws against any hits).
- Hoplite - This heavy infantry unit isn't any more armored than their lighter Thorakites, but they carry heavier weapons, like this HMG profile which can keep your opponents in cover with its burst 4. The Hoplite can also be your Lieutenant option and with move 6-2 and 2 wounds, they can be where you need them with some durability.
- Thyreos - Different from the normal Steel Phalanx armored units, this very mobile unit can forward deploy, has a 6-2 movement, and along with ARM 2, also has Dodge +2" and Mimetism -3 to help them avoid incoming fire. This profile comes armed with a submachine gun and antipersonnel mines and there are also options for hacking devices.
How Do I Use The Infinity Operation Blackwind Haqqislam Units?
The Blackwind Haqqislam force contains:
- Daylami - These line troopers come with some interesting profiles. Armed with rifles and light shotguns, they're not particularly hard-hitting, but they do have single-use camouflage to initially protect them and they are very cheap.
- Barid Hacker - This Barid profile has options for carry both a rifle and light shotgun, or even doubling up as a Lieutenant and hacker. All options are cheap, and while not physically durable, BTS 3 is handy when defending against other hackers.
- Lasiq - This sniper is armed with a basic sniper rifle, that's effective at long-range with Burst 2 and their profile has +1 ranged damage. ARM 2 and Mimetism -3 help protect them from return fire.
- Nadhir - These specialist operatives come with forward deployment and Mimetism -6 to help them achieve goals. This profile comes armed with a submachine gun for close-up work.
- Bokhtar - This fast, armored and well-equipped unit really stands out against the lighter Hassassins. a 6-2 MOV, Dodge +3 and +2" and Super Jump help movement. ARM 4 and Mimetism -3 to keep them forward into fire. A Multispectral Visor and Red Fury with burst 4 to punish anything they find. They come with a variety of profiles. For some extra cost, they can be a Parachutist, to deploy them along any table edge, or Lieutenant if you want to keep them back and protect everyone with their AROs.
How Do I Expand Beyond Blackwind?
Both of these forces can be expanded instantly with the Obsidian Head Dire Foes mission pack and then later on with the Beyond Blackwind pack. Obsidian Head contains:
- Rahman Rouhani - A Haqqislam medical specialist that can bring fridnly units back from the unconscious state with their medkit and very effective Doctor +3 ability.
- Trisha N33 - An ALEPH engineer that can repair anything with structure points. They come armed with the solid Breaker Combi Rifle which is Burst 3 against enemy BTS, and AP ammo which halves their save. A 6-2 move keeps them mobile, but they don't have the same high armor of other Steel Phalanx units.
- Underworld Fixer - The fixer is an objective miniature and doesn't have a specific profile for use in any faction. They're used in the Obsidian Head mission available on the CodeOne downloads page.
The Beyond Blackwind pack will come with 6 new units, 3 for each ALEPH and Haqqislam and we'll look at that in more detail when it's released.
The copy of Infinity CodeOne Operation Blackwind used to produce this guide was provided by Corvus Belli.