Infinity Unit Review: Hardcase, 2nd Irregular Frontiersmen
The humble Hardcase is the cheapest camouflaged infiltrator in the game. It allows a bit of a shell game with USAriadna, allowing you to place more camo markers than you have models, but also just provides an incredibly inexpensive road block for an advancing opponent.
The stat-line of the Hardcase is fairly standard across the board. BS11, and WIP12 mean it isn't going to be winning many fire fights or accomplishing a lot of objectives. That said, you aren't taking the Hardcase to be a combat master, it's his special rules and equipment that really make him shine.
CH: Ambush Camouflage is an amazing ability, allowing you to place a decoy camo marker, anywhere within the Zone of Control of the camo marker representing the Hardcase himself. By combining a Hardcase or two, with a few Foxtrots, your opponent is going to be walking through a metaphorical minefield of camouflage that could be nothing at all, or a shotgun to the face. It's important to remember that while he can re-enter the camo state, it won't place a new decoy.
The only decision to make between the two profiles is if you want a light shotgun, or a rifle. Both have their uses, a Hardcase with rifle in suppressive fire and in cover imposes a -9 penalty for the enemy to shoot at, meaning your mere 14 point model can turn into a real pain to remove. Alternatively, on the active turn, a light shotgun to the face with surprise shot can turn his paltry BS11 into a stunning BS17 attack, with the enemy shooting back at potentially -9 (camouflage, surprise shot, cover). I prefer the shotgun as an active turn pain in the butt, but the case can be made for either profile, and being so cheap, it's not going to break the bank either way.
Another perk to keep in mind is the Hardcase's tactical bow. I previously wrote an article about using silent weapons, but on top of being able to sneakily execute enemy troopers, the tactical bow gives the Hardcase an anti-materiel weapon that can be crucial in ITS Scenarios like The Grid.
Despite not having an amazing profile or set of weapons, being the cheapest camo infiltrator in the game has some important perks. At two points more than a Grunt, it's almost trivial to add a couple to any army list. When you're playing scenarios with multiple objectives, or claiming board territory, being able to sprinkle up to 7 camouflaged infiltrators, and 10 camo markers, can really give you an edge in the scenario.