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Battlegroup 2009+ for The War In Angola


Battlegroup has been written because of modern wargamers, dissatisfaction with the commercial rules available. Battlegroup has been play-tested over the last few years and were used successfully between 1997 and 2008 in the Ultramodern World Wargaming Championships, the 1997 Royal Air Force Wargames Association Championships and the modern competition at Roll Call 2001-2007. The feedback from all those experienced players helped the rules evolve into this edition.

Although these rules offer nothing revolutionary in the field of wargames rules you will find Battlegroup faster and easier to follow than previous modern rules, rules that due to the complexities of modern warfare ended up either too complicated or far too simplistic. Battlegroup is designed to give the feel of modern combat, taking into account all the latest technologies being fielded, yet still remain an enjoyable game. These rules are ideal for quick battles, competitions, and campaign games or even for new players to learn about modern warfare.

At first glance the rules may appear as complex as its predecessors; however, you will find there are some key differences:

  • The DATASHEETs are dedicated to a particular nation and date period and most of the complex statistics have been applied already, cutting down on the player’s workload.
  • The arithmetic has been reduced to the bare minimum so after a few games the players will be able to roll a die and tell instantly if the result is successful, fails or needs checking in the rulebook.
  • Morale is tested at Company level to try and bring a result within the normal playing time of a game.
  • The rolling of dice for spotting targets has largely been removed. Spotting targets is done on a distance table and this speeds the game up immeasurably.
  • The effects of suppression are so severe that it also encompasses neutralisation.
  • There are comprehensive examples throughout the rules; these are in italics for easy reference.
  • If there is a chance of success then the top score will always succeed and the lowest score will always fail. The top score will usually kill the target too.
  • There is the possibility of friendly fire.
  • Armour and penetration values have been generalised so that certain types of AFVs, ATGMs, gun penetration values, etc. can be grouped together. The secrecy that surrounds modern equipment makes it impossible to give accurate number values for their performance.

The aim of these rules is to put some fun back into modern wargaming and players should try and keep the game relatively light hearted. Some players may not find these rules comprehensive enough, feel free to amend them as you see fit but remember you can only use the original version for competitions. The first and most important rule is this: enjoy the game but in the event of a disagreement that cannot be resolved amicably try and get a third party to make a judgement, if this is not possible both players should roll a die and the winner gets their way.

Finally, I must thank the following people; Bruce Rea-Taylor and Bob Connor who gave us the excellent Challenger series, Ian Shaw and his Leopard rules, Jim Dickinson, Ray Lowe, Tony Booth, “Paddy” McKee, Tristan Trench, Bob Medcraft, Matt Biggs, Mike Watkins, Richard Bush and Theunis Vorster for their invaluable help and all the competition players who play tested these rules.

I’d also like to thank Mike Jones who originally wrote these rules for all the hard work he put in over the years. This 2009 edition owns everything to his 1st edition.

Ian Clarke

Worlds Championship Umpire 1996-2007

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