A German 38(t) tank crunches over a purple objective marker on a canal bridge. On the right, a tiddly Dutch Carden-Loyd tankette nervously awaits the oncoming menace.
This is a scene from my first game using Iron Fist Publishing’s Battlegroup rules, which I played recently. My Dutch forces had their first outing, and in true ‘newly-painted’ tradition, lost the battle against Scott’s Germans (who I think broke the tradition as they were also newly painted!).
Pride of my force was this Landsverk armoured car, a beautiful model made by Dutch company May ’40 Miniatures. Sadly, it blew up part-way through the battle. But now that it has had its baptism of fire, perhaps it will do better next time!
Here are my Dutch Marines in their distinctive dark blue tunics man the hedge-line. They didn’t play a huge part in the battle, other than their support fire keeping the Germans’ heads down.
In the foreground sits a Böhler 47mm anti-tank gun. This performed quite well during the game, scoring a direct hit on Scott’s Sd Kfz 222 armoured car.
The game stats for this gun and other oddities in my Dutch force aren’t in the core Battlegroup rules. But fortunately an article in Dispatches magazine features everything you need to know to field this less well-known army.
Here’s my opponent Scott discussing a point of the rules with our mate Herman, who popped in for a look-see. This pic also gives you another good look at the Landsverk and some of my Dutch infantry.
Scott made the fantastic terrain board with its realistic canal in a week. He also 3D-printed two of the bridges, and provided many of the buildings, which I supplemented with my windmill, brick roads and cardboard Dutch village.
I also provided the third bridge. But as you can see, I need to make some abutments for it to sit properly instead of the brickwork hanging out over the water!
Unfortunately I didn’t get many photos of Scott’s German forces, nor did I capture the most ‘fun’ pieces on the board, our two mortars. One of Scott’s mortar’s wilder shots actually took out some of his own troops.
Overall, it was a fun game and a great evening out. Hopefully it marks the start of some more regular gaming in the future.
5 thoughts on “May 1940: somewhere in the Netherlands”
Love the board – great scenery!
great looking game!
Looking lovely! Looking forward to seeing more.
Artillery (or mortars) can be pretty dangerous in early war games in Battlegroup due to the Rounds away rules. We had game depicting the invasion of Poland, were the Polish defender of the crucial bridge bridge were so had pressed, that they requested close artillery support by a heavy battery. The Poles were a HMG team and half an infantry squad short after that.
Lovely article Roly, great pics! Thanks again for bringing your Dutch over for the game, which was a lot closer than you make out!