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"BATTLEGROUP rule?" Topic

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QUATERMASS10 Dec 2021 8:25 a.m. PST

Have any of you guy's played Battlegroup rule's by plastic soldier company?
What are the theatre supplement's like? Any good?
How historicaly/tactically accurate are they?

I got stung by the hole FOW 4th education thing so have some 15mm stuff gathing dust and want to use them.
I have a PDF of the FOW 3rd edition but feel a bit nervous printing out 400ish page's to find I've printed out another Turkey.
I have the RAPID FIRE rule's but couldn't get on with them on a meta level.
WWII is my favorite historical time period and seem to have no luck.
The best I got is TIDE OF IRON.
Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

witteridderludo10 Dec 2021 8:51 a.m. PST

It is a great set of rules. When FoW v4 came out and the guys at the club were like "meh"… I proposed Battlegroup, played a few games and within less than a month, FoW was history.
I'm sure you could find reviews and battle reports on Youtube

Ostroc10 Dec 2021 9:24 a.m. PST

FOW V3 is much better than V4, which is simply too simple. The army list they've produced are appalling and whilst proof reading has always been poor under V4 it's awful.

I would suggest FOW V3 for casual points based play and Battlegroup where someone has the time to design scenarios.

Night Owl III10 Dec 2021 9:47 a.m. PST

I find BattleGroup to be a set of rules written for WWII from the ground up rather than a set of rules that feels like a WWII theme has been pasted on the surface after the fact.

The two authors are both well studied in WWII. The list building is accurate based on early, mid or late war and the points reflect availability of units and realism.

BattleGroup is not and does not try to be a tournament game. This is a plus for some players.

The downside is that obtaining rule books can sometimes be tricky as they seem to do small print runs.

BattleGroup is highly recommended!

cj177610 Dec 2021 11:44 a.m. PST

Battlegroup is my favorite WW 2 ruleset.It gives me what i'm looking for but ,as was already said,obtainng the supplements can be diffiult.
The most recent supplement,Stalingrad,sold out on the day it was released.

Personal logo Extra Crispy Sponsoring Member of TMP10 Dec 2021 12:32 p.m. PST

Our group tried it. It had some good ideas. But we found the combat cumbersome, and the random events were pretty powerful.

In the end we went back to our house modified Flames of War 3rd and Fistful of TOWs.

Chimpy10 Dec 2021 12:54 p.m. PST

I like Battlegroup but it plays considerably slower than the other current popular WW2 rules. I don't think that this is just trying to get to know the rules, it's also having to keep track of tank ammunition.

On the plus side:
Keeping track of tank ammunition can be quite entertaining when you foe runs out of ammo and has to pull back to resupply.

Rules for reserving fire for the opponents turn means that you get an chance to take opportunity fire.

The rules books are lovely and look even better than the FOW ones IMHO.

Scales of support seem more reasonable for a company sized game ie no flights of ground attack aircraft which can be expected to turn up one turn in two.

On the downside you're pretty much on your own for deciding what can see what or how far you can see into woods etc.

I didn't have much trouble obtaining the books and I'm in NZ. But that was in a pre Covid world.

Wargamer Blue10 Dec 2021 3:58 p.m. PST

Battlegroup has really good infantry and artillery rules but I found armour to be be very tedious, especially keeping track of ammo. We ended up going with the Blitzkrieg Commander rules from Pendraken. We have had some cracking games.

cj177610 Dec 2021 4:12 p.m. PST

I must confess i never bother to track ammo.That is a level of micromanagement i dont really need.

QUATERMASS10 Dec 2021 5:29 p.m. PST

Thanks for the feedback Lot's to consider.
Torlment games don't interest me.
The idea of a ruleset designed for WWII sounds cool!
The ammo count is a bit worrying although I'll probably be playing small action's.
Blitzkrieg commander sounds interesting.
This period seems to be a bit of a minefield.

VonBlucher10 Dec 2021 8:58 p.m. PST

Excellent set of rules, forces you to play the actual tactics used in WW2, and if you don't, you'll be toast. Combatants each have their own Battle rating in points and when you go over you're battle rating, it's like a radio message telling you to disengage and pull out. You pull chits to unpin troops, or when a unit is destroyed. the chits are numbered and the number is a minus to your battle rating. There's also some random events on the chits. Since FOW V4 came out there is probably over a thousand ex FOW players that picked up Battlegroup and love it. The theater books, each gives you the flavor of that time frame of the war.

ccmatty Supporting Member of TMP11 Dec 2021 8:25 a.m. PST

For those of you who went from FoW to Battlegroup, were/are you able to keep your FoW infantry bases the same or did you rebase individually?

I have the Battelgroup rules and love the flavor and British and German forces ready to go at 20mm scale – but I have yet to play.

I also have 15mm DAK/Italians and Allies based for FoW but would like to play Battlegroup rules with these.

Thoughts? – and not trying to hijack the thread here.

VonBlucher11 Dec 2021 8:47 a.m. PST

From the looks of their battle reports most of them kept their infantry bases as is and you can pickup small dice to put behind them to reflect casualties. All my newly painted troops I mounted them individually with the exception of the 3 man machine gun teams are mounted together. Very active Facebook group with over 5,000 members and very helpful if you have a rules question as some of the older guys and even the author respond pretty quickly to your questions. No problem with 15mm as the rules were created for 15 & 20mm figures in mind. So no need to change any distances.

ccmatty Supporting Member of TMP11 Dec 2021 10:39 a.m. PST

Thanks VonBlucher. So, if you based your 15mm infantry individually, do you mind sharing size and shape bases do you use? I might actually prefer that to the 5-man or 4-man bases. Also, what size and shape for your 3-man MG teams?

dantheman Supporting Member of TMP12 Dec 2021 6:31 a.m. PST

Battlegroup is on the same scale (one to one) as Flames of War. Prefer Battlegroup. It does play slower than FOW, but once you know the rules it goes reasonably quick. Feels much more like WW2 combat.

Don't understand the gripe about ammo. I tape tracking strips to the bottom of the tank. Then use erasable markers to track use. Easy. Just pick up the tank. The indirect artillery fire rules are cumbersome and could be simpler, but quick to learn if you make a flow chart. Set up does takes more effort.

You can use FOW infantry stands but you would have to track strength with hit markers or the sticker system I described above. Simple and it works.

To learn Battlegroup don't do what my friends do. Throw everything on the table and play a game. Start with an infantry skirmish the size of Bolt Action. Then build from there. Do a simple tank battle to learn those mechanics, etc..

It really is easy to learn and play.

QUATERMASS12 Dec 2021 9:30 a.m. PST

Thanks for the advice about learning the rules piecemeal.

First impression's
I've picked up the rules yesterday and have to say it has some of the best miniature photography I've ever seen if you squint you're eyes you could be forgiven if they were shots from a film, I like the pencil drawing's they look like they were traced from photographs.

Skimming through the rules it looks like its gonna be a while before I get a game in.

I like the way its laid out it feel's finding that rule in the heat of battle won't be to much hassle.

The special rules is very cool I had no idea the Soviet's used bed sping's as anti Panzafaust armor I've had the book less than 2 day's and I've learnt a bit of history.

On the photos can anyone identify those lovely Tommy's on page'2&3
On a negative the book States
"To facilitate this reprint the campaign section of the previous hardback rulebook Canada's crucible for the 3rd Canadian Division vs 12th SS at Norrey-en-Bessin in Normandy has been removed.
This will be made available as a separate PDF from plastic soldier company."

Well i can't find it and it would be great help.

BeneathALeadMountain12 Dec 2021 1:06 p.m. PST

Battlegroup is an excellent set of rules and by no way slow or complicated. It's easy to learn, fast to play and has proved popular with every non-historical gamer I've introduced to it. Quatermass if it's a picture in the books then it's probably one of Piers Brands model collection and thus 20mm, from, I think, AB miniatures (sometimes some Adler miniatures as well I think).


QUATERMASS12 Dec 2021 2:30 p.m. PST

Thanks BALM!

VonBlucher12 Dec 2021 8:54 p.m. PST

I use 15mm round bases for individuals, 25mm for 2 man teams, and 30mm round for 3 man teams. I had these specially made for me by a friend who works with sheet metal.

Achtung Minen13 Dec 2021 5:56 a.m. PST

My memory is that Battlegroup is written by an ex-GW guy (Warwick Kinrade) and it is very much in the same mode as competition-style GW games… each model has a point cost and an army list from which you buy options. That alone is reason to steer clear in my opinion, but even the name of the game is confusing… it is basically a platoon-level game in practice as I recall and "Battlegroups" were actually much larger formations than a platoon! I think it was suggested in the rules that you could play bigger formations but I have never seen it with more than a company per side (and really, who does larger than that with 28mm 1:1 models?). There is no ground or time scale to the game, as I recall. Plus it had the usual problem that many platoon games have of encouraging you to field the world's most well-supported platoon, with tanks and artillery and air support and field guns and the kitchen sink to support 30 lowly infantrymen. The core mechanics also had the rather tedious "you can move twice or shoot twice or move and shoot once" concept that is seen in far too many rules and the shooting mechanics were largely lifted from 1990's GW games.

cj177613 Dec 2021 10:31 a.m. PST

All of the army lists are based on what units were actually
used in a real WW2 campaign.
It's not like bolt action where you can put just about anything into a game,historical or not.

QUATERMASS13 Dec 2021 12:16 p.m. PST

Achtung Minen
Why is a point system a deal breaker for you it seems the most logical way of valueing a unit.
Is their a better way?
Do you have a surjection for an altunitive 15mm ruleset?
Oh and I'm guessing its a typo but the game is 15/20mm not 28mm.

dantheman Supporting Member of TMP13 Dec 2021 5:50 p.m. PST

cj1776. Yes, you are absolutely correct. It is not ‘set up to put what you want on the table' as some claim FOW does.

You are limited in each supplement to what was available. For example, in ‘Fall of the Reich' you will be fielding more volkssturm than any Tiger. The point system is a guide to setting the size of the scenario. It is not a free shopping cart wish list. You are restricted by historical limitations.

Any suggestion to the contrary about Battlegroup is misleading.

Achtung Minen13 Dec 2021 8:41 p.m. PST

Quartermass, my favourite method is how Battlefront WW2 handles it: you are given the actual OOBs so you can see what elements were organic support and figure out how and what assets were generally available for attachment. Then you just research the scenario you want to put on, learn about the formations that were present and instantly know what kind of units they might expect to have. That's the same way military commanders did it during the war… they liked to know not only how many enemies are in their sector but what kinds of formations, as that will then give them insight into what kinds of forces they might encounter.

I don't like point systems for historicals though… I'd rather leave scenario design in the hands of a gamemaster or referee than bother with a points system, and I don't play "bring and battle" type games ever.

Cormac Mac Art13 Dec 2021 10:06 p.m. PST

I'm a fan of Battlegroup. What got me hooked on it, other than the actual rules, is the facebook group that Piers and Warwick are both active in. Warwick is the creator and Piers has been involved with Battlegroup to help playtest and write theater books. I highly recommend joining that group. Anytime I've posted a question regarding rules, or other hobby related things, I've always gotten great help.

The system is scalable, can be played from squad level to battalion sized games. The points system and battle rating system both exist to help balance the games between players, but balance isn't required. The system has some malleability to it that allows scenarios to be built and played, even with wildly uneven forces, and still get a fun game. You can use miniatures already based for FOW, you just have to keep track of casualties. There are different ways to track ammo to make it easier.

If you want to get started, you'll need the core rulebook. The soft cover, most recent printing, is the cheapest and easiest to come by. You will also need a theater book. Theater books contain all the info you need to play battles using theater appropriate forces and within a certain timeframe and a certain geographic location. Overlord: Beyond the Beaches has info starting with D+1 in Normandy in 1944. It is probably the most useful theater book to start with. It will have army lists for Germans, Brits, and US forces from D+1 to Market Garden. However, the army lists in this book will be used till the end of the war and each theater book that comes after will have modifications to these army lists.

It's a fun system and I hope you have a great time with it.

QUATERMASS13 Dec 2021 10:08 p.m. PST

Achtung Minen
I see, it sound a bit intense for me but I understand now why you don't like point system's maybe someday I might meet someone who will hold my hand through a game like that I'd like to try! alas I'm the hand holder in most games I play.

Cormac Mac Art13 Dec 2021 10:08 p.m. PST


The PDF of Canada's Crucible is on the facebook group for the Battlegroup rules under the files section. If you don't have access to that, I could always snag it and email it to you.

QUATERMASS13 Dec 2021 10:52 p.m. PST

Hi cormac Mac art
I was gonna go with market garden but overlord beyond the beaches would also be cool, living in brexit Britain (Churchill would be spinning in his grave) it relatively easy to pick up supplement's from PSC website.
I don't do Facebook so could you grab that pdf for me? That would be great however I don't know how to private message you so I can give you my e-mail address

Cormac Mac Art14 Dec 2021 6:47 a.m. PST


just shoot me an email to giovanni DOT jov AT gmail DOT com

QUATERMASS14 Dec 2021 3:38 p.m. PST

Cormac Mac art
You get that?

Cormac Mac Art14 Dec 2021 5:32 p.m. PST

I did. Sent ya a reply

QUATERMASS15 Dec 2021 7:16 p.m. PST

Comac Mac art
I've had a look at that stuff you sent me and I'd like to thank you again the QRS PDF will be very useful and Canada's crucible PDF will be of great help, while I like the idea of a rule book with just rules I think realy it needed this campaign section to help get a feel for the game possibly as a separate booklet that would come with the main book.

VonBlucher18 Dec 2021 1:06 p.m. PST

Point system is only there to play balanced forces. We have used many scenarios from other sources that were not balanced and just need to attach the BR values to the forces. We've done this quite a few times in playing Market Garden scenarios. Using upwards of a full company of infantry and a squadron of tanks.

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