Flames of War is a World War II game owned and marketed by Battlefront of New Zealand. The game is aimed at play with 15mm models, though it works equally well with other scales. The rules are produced by Battlefront with basic `core' rules sets supplemented by a series of `period' rules and army list books.
The rules recognise that technical development was incredibly quick during WWII and that mixing ISIII and King Tigers with earlier vehicles simply does not work. They have therefore been sub grouped into `Early', `Middle' and `Late' war groups, sub divided by theatre, so `Mid War, Eastern Front' for example. The `early war' is undergoing one of Battlefront's periodic `redevelopments'. Note also that BattleFont have to date shown no interest in the Far East, so there are no `official' Army lists for Japan, China, or the USA or Britain in the Far East, and while other companies produce quite extensive catalogues of equipment for these Theatres Battlefront do not currently produce any. Bizarrely 1960's Vietnam is covered!
`Early War` lists are available on line, though it should be noted that they are not yet `official'. Early War Army Lists
Flames of War uses an `I go - You go' (alternate movement) format familiar in many current sets of rules. This lends itself to tornament play and accounts for the very quick gain in popularity with these rules. For more about tournaments look at the BHGS website which advertises most of the major tournaments in the UK. Games are usually played to a points value - 1500 for ealy / mid war and 1750 for mid - late. Each of the intelligence briefings sets out what can be included in each type of force. In common with many rules sets an army consists of a core of compulsory troops with add on or `attached' elements like artillery or air support.
Don't however be fooled into thinking that like `Games Workshop' products Battlefront are the only kids on the block producing 15mm WW2 models. A producers directory showing half a dozen others is here. All 15mm WW2 models by other producers can be used as direct substitutes for Battlefront models on the table and are allowed in tournaments.
It it is worth noting that some vehicles not produced by Battlefront have been `written out of history' (the army lists) until they can get round to producing them themselves. Conversly, some vehicles produced only as prototypes, or in very small numbers appear as `Mid War Monsters' for example'. Models for these tend to be unique to Battlefront, but players need to be very cautious about their use.