Tuesday, 27 December 2011

World Exclusive: Sarissa Precision 'System ∞'

These are early mock up, the finished article has slightly different detailing

You know what? Sitting on a world exclusive isn't very easy you know. Especially when it's something a little bit exciting. Sure, so I'm not about to break the news on a new race in 40k, or tell you the 8th race in Warpath. Neither am I about to show you the profiles of the 0-12 forces in Infinity. But, hey I'm only a little blog and any world exclusive is a big deal for me alright! It's also my first so yeah... I'm milking it baby! No, what I'm about to show you is the latest efforts of those lovely chaps at Sarissa Precision. You know the people behind all that Old West scenery I've reviewed and used for my games of Malifaux of late. I'm a fully signed up fan of their Old West scenery and indeed laser cut HDF scenery in general. I really do think it's the future of scenery as it's strong, versatile and affordable what's not to love?

Easy access for internal gunfights
So imagine my delight when a fair few months back now I got an email off of Steve at Sarissa Precision asking me if I'd look over some new concepts for them. Stuff with a more futuristic 'slant'. I was only too happy to oblige and feedback my comments. This back and forth has gone on past a fair few emails and months now, and all the time I had to keep my big gob shut about how cool their stuff was. Not able to say a thing on pain of death, and trust me as somebody who just loves talking hobby and letting others know about cool stuff, it has very nearly killed me. I've been bouncing off of walls with anticipation, because I'm genuinely interested to see what other gamers think of it, and what you think of it. However, I can now break the silence and let you see what I've been looking at for quite a while now, and that is a really cool fully modular set of futuristic HDF terrain, suitable for many types of future war skirmish games, such as Infinity.

It is with Infinity that I really see this stuff taking off. Sure we've got Micro Art producing their admittedly really nice looking buildings and walkways, but as of right now there isn't really that much variance with what's on offer in that range. I'm sure that variance will come with the Micro Art stuff, as they've promised it will. But, what Sarissa Precision are starting with is a full set of buildings that offer you that versatility and difference, with it's own unique style and look. That ability to shape your battlefields the way you want to. And I'm bloody excited about it! The other really good thing about the Sarissa Precision stuff is cost, the Old West scenery was all extremely well priced and This range is no different with prices for buildings starting at £12. So this really could break down one of the two remaining barriers, that I think are stopping Infinity really taking off as a game system, and that is a suitable, quick and cost effective way of building up a board full of well made scenery. The other issue I'll be touching on soon in a series of articles.

Laser cut prototype. I'll show more pics in my reviews

So just what the hell have those lovely chaps at Sarrissa Precision got in store? Well over all I think the look and feel of their 'System ∞' stuff is more of a sci-fi outpost, or a colonisation town, a temporary settlement and intransigent in nature. The first settlement in a new region of some recently discovered planet, if you will. I suppose the best way to describe it would either be industrial prefab units or maybe even the Wild West in space! In short it's a very different feel and vibe to what we've seen from other companies, the frontier town ambiance should see people create different types of board, or at least I hope it will, I suppose I'm looking at a kind of Wild West town in space kind of look, mixed in with research outpost... yeah this means I'll be doing a board with this stuff. So I'll be doing work in progress articles of that for you too. Currently I'm looking at doing a Haqq Islam desert outpost settlement with some medical research facility attach. Lots of sand and palm trees, but what have Sarissa Precision got to help me achieve that look?

Walkways and Gantries

Well, we've all seen recently how cool walkways and gantries can be, some people may even have mercilessly 'borrowed' another companies design (you know who you are!). And yes I'm trying to be polite about it. However, we already have Micro Arts urban looking walkways, so I don't see the point in a company following that design or trying to 'emulate' it, the market has already provided that. So praise the lord that Sarissa also saw no point in going down that same route. Yeah, sure they're walkways, but nobody owns the right on walkways and gantries, besides Sarissa have gone for a more utilitarian and industrial looking set of walkways. They look like they belong in a frontier town in space, or an iron works, or a petrochemical factory, not some futuristic social housing estate. They wear their functionality on their sleeves, not that they actually have sleeves, look it's a turn of phrase. Oh here look at some pretty pictures:

This is a low and long Gantry section, there will be shorter and higher versions

A bot like this! This is a high short section
They are also bloody versatile. Not content with making one type of walkway, Sarissa have developed a veritabe gaggle of options with their walkways, we have the standard walkway sections with open sides and top, in two heights high and low. But they've also produced various add on kits such as the nifty looking 'Gantry Rail Lighting' kits complete with laser cut acrylic lights. Swanky. Or my personal favourite add on kit the 'Gantry Canopies with Lighting' I can just see so many possibilities and uses for them in the games that I have played in Infinity. Genuinely when I saw the covered canopies there might have been an audible girlish squeal of delight emminating from my vicinity... OK I'm a wargames geek and I'm easily pleased! I think these few options alone would have been enough to keep this gamer happy creating walkways in the sky...

But not Sarissa. They decided they needed to offer more options, some of the criticisms gamers have leveled at the Micro Art Walkways is that they are open, well so far the pictures of the walkways I've shown you are also open. Well, you've got options now. There are 'Low Enclosed Gantry Signage Rails' and 'High Enclosed Gantry Signage Rails', both of which offer you as a gamer sturdy solid cover, at varying heights. Bloody fantastic option if you ask me. However, Sarissa haven't been content to stop there, oh no, they also give us the exceptionally cool looking (well I really like them) 'High Enclosed Gantry Tech Rails', in short they've given us gamers all the possible options we could desire. So there is absolutely no way in the world any of you guys could complain about what is on offer here, unless of course you're just a whinger.

Gantry side walls low. You'll get your cover bonus now!!!

This is a covered gantry section
The final type of walkway has only actually very recently been passed under my nose! Yeah, that's right, hot off the press. It was an option that I wasn't expecting, and didn't even known was something I might actually want... but again it's a fabulous option. They're called 'Gantry Walls' and they provide a solid wall of complete line of sight blocking terrain. They provide you with the option of building an enclosed military compound, or maybe a secure high tech research facility or industrial zone. They can be linked on the internal walls side with the other walkway systems, and also the rather cool looking 'Outpost Watch Tower'. There is also the 'Gantry Wall Gate', which actually has doors that can open and close. So where are the pictures I hear you cry? Well Sarissahaven't put them on sale yet and I don't want to spoil every surprise now do I? You'll just have to wait for these. The options are a little bewildering at first, but also really liberating. They really do give you all the options you need, and the best bit is that as they're sold seperately you only need buy the options you want so there's no wastage and you get the perfect layout you were after. They're off to a good start with these walkway options, they really are!

Habitation Pod Explorer - The smallest option
Pods and hab units

These will be the meat and veg of the 'System ∞' modular terrain sets. They offer a really cool way of constructing your own outpost frontier space town. As such there are a fair few options to hand, all of which allow you easy access to their interiors. We have the nice small, but perfectly formed 'Habitation Pod Explorer' Great for stacking smaller units on top of bigger units. Or even for creating small, narrow back street warren type environments. Next up we have the slightly longer version of the this pod, the 'Habitation Pod Settler'. It has the same neat hexagonal 'tube' like shape, but offers a more substantially sized construction. Again the possibilities for building your own frontier town are opened up with this building, with the ability, in conjunction with those walkways to 'stack' these in interesting configurations and create your own unique habitation block units.

Habitation Pod Settler - The medium option
Building on the length of 'Habitation Pod Settler' we then get the positively huge 'Habitation Pod Family', I guess the clue is in the name, it doubles or thereabouts the width of the 'Habitation Pod Settler' while retaining that length. You know, not that size matters or anything. This wider pod also introduces some standard internal detailing to the mix, in the shape of some 'structure frames', they add a nice utilitarian functionality to the interior of the building. The Habitation Pod Family also has the rather neat feature of these big open panel type windows, that come supplied with the shutters 'down' look, but can be removed, and I'm also told that at a future date there will also be some laser cut acrylic 'windows' made available. A variation on this particular theme is the 'Plaza - Pod', looking suspiciously like the Habitation Pod Family, you'll actually see that it has a 'porch' type area to the front of it. Offering yet another subtle variance for us wargamers to use. Pretty much all of what I have said about the largest Pod also rings true about the Plaza - Pod.

Habitation Pod Family - The largest option
But just like the walkways, Sarissa Precision have also got some nice conversion and add on kits to bring to the base units as well. From nice details such as the 'Pod Tech Panel' accessory kit that will allow you to add some extra surface details to your Pods, such as numbers or various service panel hatches, a simple idea but a welcome one. There are also the 'Pod Trade Signage' options, to attach at the front roof sections of those pods to turn them into commercial looking units, again a simple idea, but a again very useful, not just aesthetically but also for breaking up any high vantage points Line of Sight, and providing some cover. You want more? What about some 'Pod Roof Access Ladders'? Yep, you'll have a cool looking sets of steps designed to grant easy access to those roofs, again something Infinity players have been begging for. There are also A variety of 'Elevation Supports' for raising those pods higher off of the ground, either at 'high' or 'medium' elevations that match up with the gantry options. Cunning! Yet more splendid options.

Yet another configuration that can be built

However, that's all external stuff right? Well yep, and external stuff is great no question, but in my games of Infinity invariably we end up going inside buildings to get away from the withering hail of bullets. So it is great that all of these pods allow really quick and easy access to the internal structures, just like they do with their Oldwest range. Even better is the fact that there will be 'Pod Interior Wall' kits to subdivide the interiors up. Yeah they really have thought of everything, these internal walls will allow you to section off parts of the internal sections into rooms, with doors and everything. I very nearly wet myself when I saw that, OK maybe that was too much information, but hopefully all of you Infinity gamers are just as excited about all of this as I am, because now we can create workable realistic buildings quickly and cost effectively. I've always wanted to have a shoot out in a kitchen / dinning room, with a few bits of decent resin internal details my dream can now be turned into reality. Thanks Sarissa.

Look futuristic stackable shipping containers!!!
Industrial units

There are plenty of us gamers out there who want to create Industrial looking boards. Replete with shipping containers, warehuses and storage silo's. Up until now if this is the look you were going for you had to be a dab hand with the old scratch built scenery. Or have been lucky enough to have tracked down some AT-43 shipping containers, which are rarer than rocking horse poo! However, my main issue with the AT-43 shipping containers, apart from their scarcity, is the fact they don't actually look all that 'modern' or 'futuristic'. Maybe in a couple hundreds of years shipping containers will look as they do today, or maybe they'll look a little bit more sleek and more like these shipping containers from Sarissa. The way they interlock in nice straight lines and retain a nice space between the upper and lower sections just looks modern to me. Yeah OK, so that gap might be considered wasted shipping space, but in the future we'll all be hedonistic, decadent consumers, so what's a little wasted space between containers? Besides these fit better with the sleek anime look of Infinity.

Side Silo with ladders

The other great staple of Industrial designs that I've seen, apart from the utilitarian gantries already covered elsewhere in this article, are those silo type structures. I mean come on, admit it, we've all tried the Pringles tube silo. Haven't we? Sure some of us have probably achieved better success with it than others, but if your 'Pringle silo's' are anything at all like mine they're a weak structure that eventually breaks down and need re-doing from the ground up. So when I saw the 'System ∞ - Silo' there may have been a hallelujah moment. They look cool, offer your snipers decent positions with which to pop heads, and also provide great ground cover. The standing up silo's will also get a great accessory set in the shape of the 'Silo Ladders', that will hopefully stop snipers sitting on top of them killing people with impunity, unless they're smart enough to bring some antipersonnel mines with them. The second accessory offered with for the silo's is the 'Silo Horizontal Support Frame', which allows you, rather obviously, to put those Silo's horizontally, to add to this there will also be some 'Silo Horizontal Side Ladders. Again versatility seems to be the watchword here... and I like it

I have however saved the best till last. During one of my many emails to Steve at Sarissa, mentioning the sorts of things I think us gamers might like to see, I may have mentioned that we'd all like to to see a warehouse type structure. Sure enough a few days later I got this image I know, totally fracking awesome right, RIGHT? The 'Industrial - Warehous Unit' has to be my current pick of the bunch, I mean look at it and tell me you don't want at least one of them right now! On your gaming board, completed, and ready to play games over. They'll provide a nice big internal space that you'll be able to stack boxes and crates inside, hell maybe you might even be able to fit a resin sci-fi vehicle in there from somewhere like Antenocitis Workshop. Now wouldn't that look ace, and wouldn't that just be a brutally cool piece of scenery to fight over? Just look at the possibilities all of this Industrial looking scenery now affords us as gamers. There's not too much you can't do with this now is there? Go on build yourself a future warehouse / industrial sector... there may even be a rather huge center piece office / factory / research facility building I'm not showing you yet. I know I'm mean aren't I.

Street furniture

Finally, but by no means least comes the street furniture. It's something that many of us I'm sure mess up or neglect on our own boards. Many of us are good at getting the big square blocks of buildings done, although if you're like me recently you might even be a bit poor at getting those done! So street furniture isn't always the highest of priorities, trust me I know. So it's great Sarissa have also provided a few options in this department as well. Although it's not quite classed as street level clutter, there will be a 'Roof Clutter' set, that will provide you with a solar panels and AC unit to put onto building roofs. There will also be the very hi-tech looking 'Satellite Ariel Array', which sure could end up on top of roofs, but there's no reason why they couldn't be at street level, they'd look ace amongst a temporary looking street market, Ghost In the Shell Stylie! Ah yes, shoot outs amongst melons. They've also decided to provide us all with some street lamps, it's the one thing that is always missing from my own urban boards and totally ruins the illusion of a street. Well no more, I have a solution for that now. There's even the 'Street Canopy with Lighting', which looks a bit like a bus shelter, or maybe one of those 'smoking shelters' that have sprung up at workplaces all over the UK since the smoking ban. Either way it will have its uses in helping to create a frontier town. There will be some 'High' and 'low' street walls made available, so that's most of the bases I can think of well and truly covered.

Street Canopy with lighting

I know this has been a mammoth article, and a huge amount of information for you to digest, but hopefully you all think it has been worth it. I know I'm super excited by all the stuff Sarissa Precision have shown me over the last month or two, and I've been itching to get my hands on it and game test it all... and now I have! I also want to work out cool configurations and build a cool looking Haqqislam military outpost / research facility out of it all, I even have a colour scheme and basic plan in mind. Although when I look at this stuff I see endless possibilities for Infinity, it also has scope outside of Infinity. There is no reason why this stuff couldn't be used to make a Tau outpost in 40k or maybe a futuristic looking shanty town for Dark Age or Eden. Hell It would even make some utterly fab looking Necromunda terrain. Obviously I'm sure my enthusiasm and excitement for this range comes through loud and clear. It's just yet another great scenery option for us wargamers to choose from, and choice is a good thing right? What I now want to know, having broken the story to you all, is what do you think of it? Please jot your comments down below, I'm sure the guys at Sarissa would also love to hear what you have to say about it all as well. I'll be posting an Interview with Steve Cumming of Sarissa Precision tomorrow and doing some reviews throughout the week... oh and did I mention when this stuff goes on sale? I didn't? Well guess what, it goes on sale on January 2nd. Not long to wait is it? Peace out!


  1. These look great, got a real Firefly feel going on. If there's one thing Infinity needs, it's cheap scenery - the game relies on terrain so heavily you need to fill quite a bit.

    I guess it'll all come down to the pricing, but given the high costs of Micro Art's scenery it shouldn't be hard to compete on that level.

  2. This comment has been removed by the author.

  3. @Ant, I think the pricing is reasonable, plus as it's all pick and mix you get to buy only the stuff you want / need and that saves on cost / wastage that other systems give you. PM me your email on Facebook and I'll chuck you the price list if you want.

  4. @Entopomancer, right at the end of the artickle, 2nd of January.

  5. Okay, this stuff is pretty sexy.
    I'd better get started plotting an Infinity table....and saving for it!

  6. Looks awesome, we just got a load of their Wild West buildings for Malifaux and these look ideal for Infinity.

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  8. *nerdgasm*

    Skimmed most of it (sorry), but the pictures look GREAT and you seem to think it's the bees' knees, and so I'll just trust you for now.

  9. @SinSynn, it is pretty darn cool to be honest with you! I have a shed load of it and am slowly making my way through it all reviewing it. It's nice stuff.

    @Heid, I did a load of reviews of the Sarissa Precision Old West buildings and you're right they're pretty darn sweet. Well I like them. But hand on heart these Pods are ever so slightly better as standard buildings. They clip together without the need for gluing.

    @NerdandGeekStuff, bit cheeky posting a link like that without asking first... but I'll let you off for now. :P

    @GoldenKaos, I'm glad you trust me matey.

  10. WOW!! I would have been excited enough just with the stackable, futuristic shipping containers, but oh my goodness the housing units and silos are amazing! I can't wait to get my hands on some of these for an Ariadna table.

  11. This looks really good! I'm thinking Ariadna. Might have to change my mind about going for an urban table...

  12. @Papa JJ, there's more. Much, much more. I've only shown a fraction of what I've seen I really have. There's a really, really cool looking centre piece as well as the walled gantries which I think have a really cool Ariadna vibe to them. Just Frantically reviewing it all.

    @Martin, My initial thoughts were Nomad workers village all broken down and rusted and chock full of litter and graffiti. Next came the Ariadna landing site with life pods and houses built out of the scraps on the ship. But finally I settled on a secret Haqqislam research facility in the middle of the desert. I could easily have gone with a Pan O jungle base though, what with the cool futuristic looking watch towers in the range. So many options there really are.

  13. Combining that street furniture and other interesting bits with their city blocks should produce a nice Blade Runner/Fifth Element look, which is something I find very interesting indeed...

  14. @mDZ, yep if you mixed things up a bit from their city block range with some of their sci-fi stuff then yep Fifth Element or Blade Runner type boards should be a definite possibility. If you give it a blast you'll have to post pics of the outcome.

  15. You have a shedload of it?!?

    Ok, I'm a lil' jelly!

  16. @Angus, agreed. I think its really cool stuff.

    @SinSynn, yes I do. Still not enough to make a full on desert board yet but I'm working on it!!! I didn't expect to get anything really, but it's nice that I did. First few reviews up shortly.

  17. I agree with Ant Holloway up there - a definite Firefly vibe to some of those pieces. In my books that's a very good thing :)

    I almost want to start playing Infinity just so I have a legitimate reason to order some of these kits. Maybe when I move into a decently sized house and can reserve some space for a gaming board...

  18. @Kemp, now there's a great reason to buy a bigger home!!! Stuff extra bedrooms for a growing family... I need a table for my Toy Soldiers!!!