I have a fair bit to review from the folks over at Micro Art Sudio, but I want to start with my favourite piece - the District 5 Holo Ads.  MAS have promised us another set of these sometime in the future, which I'm very much looking forward to, but this is what we have released right now.

As you can tell from the intro up there, I liked the Holo Ads.  I think they bring something to an Infinity board that was previously missing, and that's character.  You can spot 40k terrain miles away from its style and that elevates it over "generic sci-fi battlefield", these ads do exactly the same thing for me in regards to Infinity - it takes the battlefield from generic sci-fi and uplifts it to an Infinity battlefield.

I know that some people pick issue with anime-style art and they aren't going to be happy with these boards, but that's where Infinity has its roots.  You're going to need to come to terms with that sooner or later (or just ignore the fluff/art and play the game).

All the pieces for the small stand
The Holo Ads come as a single sheet of HDF with three printed 3mm thick acrylic panels for the holographic projections themselves.  The HDF is laser-cut, so expect to be hit with the smell of burnt wood the moment you pop open the shrink-wrap, but I kinda like that smell.  Each piece has been cut almost completely through, with a couple of tiny joins on each one to stop it falling out.  My package had a fair few that were detached, but it's no big issue.  Make sure you use a craft knife to break the tabs on those that are still attached - HDF is fairly strong, but it'll rip like cardboard if you pry the layers apart.

The fit of the pieces is fairly tight and I had to put a lot of pressure into getting the boards together, but thankfully none of them snapped.  You'll have to put more force than you're expecting into them, but they'll hold.  Just be careful of the smaller pieces.  It's fairly hard to get the acrylic panels into position once the stand is fully assembled but if you're patient and careful it can be done (and has to be done - you need to paint the stands separately to not ruin those lovely prints).

Once complete they do look good though.  They don't have a large footprint, so you're not getting much on the pounds to inches ratio of board coverage, but they're tall and adaptable.  I know some people play them as a zero-vis grenade, selectively blocking line of sight, but you could play them as anything you fancied for the holographic part.  The ability to take cover behind an item that can be fired through is an interesting idea, and one that enhances Infinity's natural play.

Quick size comparison
I have concerns as to the durability of the print, as a tiny part of the print on the larger board has scratched off on my set.  I'm hoping that a thin layer of varnish or watered-down PVA will protect it, but I can't say for sure that this won't damage the quality of the pieces.  I'll have to work up the courage to try it and see where it leads.

The price is fairly steep for the three boards, coming in at around £12 RRP.  Again, in terms of board coverage you don't get much, but I feel that the character they bring to the board is well worth it.  Some folks only want terrain that affects the game and that's fine - these boards probably aren't for them, but I like the field I play on to have a bit of character.  Plus I love the image of a sniper firing a long-range shot from behind a holo ad, disrupting the image briefly before impacting.  A bit of character is very welcome and Infinity's small scale lends itself perfectly to these emergent situations.

So, all in all, I like them.  I really like them.  As I said above, they're my favourite piece of the stuff I purchased and I can't wait to see what else Micro Art Studio can do with their mix of HDF and acrylic.  If you're the kind of player who adores the look of a masterfully crafted board, these do the job without needing all that difficult work.

Now, where'd I put that Multi-Sniper Rifle?

Product: District 5 Holo Ads Set One - by Micro Art Studio
Purchased from: Maelstrom Games - product link


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