The Battlegroup Rulebook is a new, small format book published to accompany the release of Battlegroup Overlord. These rules were previously released as an integral part of the Battlegroup Kursk book, but Iron Fist and Plastic Soldier have perhaps recognised that not everyone would want to purchase a full book on the Eastern Front, simply to obtain the rules of the game, and so they are presented in this book.
In essence, this is the first 60 pages of Battlegroup Kursk, shrunk into a smaller handy-sized format. The production quality of the rules remains the same. There are a couple of pages added to the introduction which expand on the design principles of the game and talk about game balance and the desire to instil more historical character in World War II games. This may well have been written in response to initial reaction to the rules, and especially the army lists, which are somewhat restrictive (a very good idea, in my opinion).
All the basics of the rules are covered in this book: Command and Control, Movement, Firing and Morale, plus Special Unit Rules, Aircraft and Engineering. It also includes 4 generic scenarios, an organisation chart and a quick reference sheet.
However, you will not be able to play Battleground with this book alone. What is missing are the army lists – most especially all the vehicle and weapon data, so this very much designed to be a companion to the campaign books.
However, as it stands, it’s a very useful book, and means that if I want to play Western Front battles using the Battlegroup rules, at least I do not have to carry around two large hardback rulebooks – a fact for which my aging back is grateful!
Disclosure: The publisher provided a review copy of these rules