Tuesday, May 28, 2013


The next random game from my collection is a relatively new one, Infidel.  This is the second game in the "Men of Iron" series, though as opposed to the first game in the series, this one focuses on cavalry tactics instead of infantry tactics.  And, as you can probably guess from the name, all of the six scenarios are taken from historical battles in Anatolia and the Middle East during the Crusader era.  I already wrote about how the system works when I discussed volume 1, so here I will discuss the differences.

As I mentioned above, these scenarios focus on cavalry tactics.  Interestingly enough, the two armies (Crusader and 'Moslem') have very different tactics.  The Crusader armies emphasize heavily armored knights and heavy cavalry, while the Moslem armies emphasize light and quick mounted archers.  Thus, while the Cruasders try to close to charging distance and then crush their opponents through superior shock power, the Moslem forces usually don't close to melee range and instead dart in for missile fire and then dart out again.  So, playing one side is very different from playing the other. 

The scenarios provided with the game have a lot of variety, from relatively straight battles upon open ground to odd tactical situations.  One of my favorites is Montgisard, where the Crusaders are outnumbered by more than five to one, but they catch their foes off guard, so at the beginning of the scenario all of the Moslem forces are disorganized, and have to try to get organized and fight back while heavily armored knights are plowing through their formation, doing as much damage as they can in as short of a time as they can.

This game, due to its focus on cavalry, has a much different feel than the original Men of Iron game.  However, the system is still fairly simple but with fun tactical complexity, so this one is a keeper.  I think this is also the only game I have that features battles of the Crusades, so another reason to have it in my collection.