Meeples & Miniatures – Episode 96 – Battlegroup Kursk

Download Episode 96

Welcome to Episode 96 of the Meeples & Miniatures Podcast

In this show, I take an in-depth look at the new World War II rules from Iron Fist Publishing and The Plastic Soldier Company: Battlegroup Kursk.

Firstly, I talk to the author, Warwick Kinrade. Then I am joined by co-host Mike Hobbs and we look in-depth at the rules.

I hope you enjoy the show.

9 Comments on Meeples & Miniatures – Episode 96 – Battlegroup Kursk

  1. Hi, the quality of sound of the interview is not very good unfortunately

  2. Sorry, but I am just not able to listen to that one. The sound quality is bad to the point of extreme annoyance. Which is a shame, because I usually enjoy the show.

  3. At one point in the interview with Warwick Kinrade he mentioned that some players during a game place their infantry transport trucks in front of their tanks to block line of sight. Gamey indeed! That sort of move never occurred to me. I was horrified that so called “historical players” could stoop so low. It’s the sort of tactic I would expect to see during tournament play. That’s one reason I don’t play in tournaments.

  4. Neil – your index bugbear. Do you know how much work creating an index involves? And the person who writes the book (in this case, Warwick) is usually not the right person to create the index, and there is no ‘automated’ way of doing it properly. Sadly, the vast majority of wargames companies are happy to spend money on the eye candy and hard covers, and even, in this case, on half-decent proofreading — but not an index. 😦

    I persevered past the sound problems and found it an interesting and exhaustive review. very interested to hear how Mike is happy to do a bit of paperwork which he calls ‘old school’. Actually, that’s more ‘middle school’ (think Bruce Quarrie, not Charles Grant) — old school proper would have no truck with such faffing about. 😉

  5. My first post on here so firstly a big thank you to Neil for producing the Meeples & Miniatures podcasts. However this was not one of the better episides IMO. It wasn’t the sound that I found to be a problem but the content. A few of the recent shows have focused almost exclusively on one game, but I prefer the more general update type shows, where there is discussion on recent goings on in the wargames world, and maybe a review or two. But two and a half hours devoted to one game is rather excessive, espcially when the game is (due to a rather strange production decision) not even a general WW2 set of rules but a rulest devoted to a niche area within WW2.
    And that two and a half hours consisted of the designer talking about the game (so effectively an extended advert), then two people “reviewing” it who have not actually played the game. I think Mike Hobbs has some very useful and interesting insight when discussing Saga, but in this podcast I’m afraid he comes over as a devoted fanboy who cannot accept any criticism of the game, even when it is clearly valid and deserved.

    • Mark

      Thanks for your comments, and for listening to the show.

      I’m sorry that you felt that this episode went on far too long – in fairness, that’s probably my fault for not being more ruthless as editor – I usually don’t like to have shows go one for more than two hours – but I wanted to both have the author interview plus a review with Mike on this show – I will bear this is mind in future.

      On your note about reviewing a set f rules for a niche part of WW2, I fear that you perhaps misinterpret the publication. Battlegroup is a set of rules designed to cover the whole of WW2, and is only bundled with the Kursk campaign book in it’s initial publication – I think that it is clear from the interview with Warwick that the intention is to release multiple campaign books in future.

      I think it is clear that both Mike & I really like this set of rules, and I apologise if this has come across in any way as ‘fanboy’ – it certainly wasn’t meant to be – but I as much as anyone tend to get enthusiastic about those wargaming rules that I like.

  6. Hi Mark

    Well that’s the first time I’ve been called a fanboy of anything, not sure how to answer that one, but here goes

    It wasn’t my intention to come across so pro Battlegroup Kursk, I guess if I like a game and it excites me then that must come across in my voice. But at the end of the day I do really like the game and the mechanics that are included, I’ve waited a long time for a game that allows me to play WWII with the enough detail to give you a good club game (i.e. playable in 2 hours) and for me BGK does that, although if I’m being honest I still class Battlefront WWII as the best WWII game out there.

    When we record a podcast; myself and Neil chat about the subject beforehand so we know each others positions and usually we will disagree on some stuff which then kind of gets raised during the podcast recording, this way you don’t get 2 or 3 guys all saying the same thing and hopefully that makes for interesting listening. I guess in this recording I was prepared for Neil’s criticisms and therefore dismissed them fairly lightly, and that probably made me sound even more enthusiastic that normal, so I will work on that Mark as it’s a valid comment.

    I’ll let Neil answer the other comments on the shows content, but one thing I do have to disagree with you on is calling the Russian campaign a Niche area in WWII. Honestly the campaign lasted nearly 4 years and resulted in the deaths of Millions of people, the front line stretched from the Baltic to the Black sea and anyone who has looked at the conflict would agree that WWII was won in the East not in the West. Just because people don’t play it very much doesn’t mean that we should dismiss it. I am personally glad that they produced a Kursk specific game instead yet another one based in Normandy, it showed a lot of courage to go down that route, I know a lot of people would disagree with me on that but that’s what makes the hobby so much fun

    Anyway thanks for comments on the show and on my delivery I’ll try and be more objective in the future

    Cheers

    Mike

  7. Neil / Mike
    Thanks for the responses, and glad to hear you are taking my comments on board. Neil – I understand that the rules can be used for the whole of WW2, but as they currently stand they will really only appeal to gamers playing the Kursk campaign (or 1943 Russian Front) because that is all they include vehicle and unit data for. This has put people off buying them, as you can see from discussions on TMP. Mike – I agree that the Russian Front was a major theatre in WW2, and I am certainly not dismissing its importance. But these rules are not for the 4 years of the Russian Front – they are just for one year, which I would call a niche area. Half of the book is stats, scenarios and army lists for 1943 Eastern Front, so that is a big chunk of pages (and hence cost) that many WW2 players will not necessarily want.
    Mark

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