6 Player Game at 60 Points
The Bowens and I returned from our Epic Scale game in Seattle to have dinner with the rest of the pirates and another game! This would be a 6 player game with the core PNW Pirates and the LA crew. These are the house rules we used, with more for the weekend marathon:
-Lord Mycron legal, but has Limit and Ransom in addition to his regular abilities.
-Custom game pieces are allowed if all players agree to their legality.
-Three islands placed per player.
-Each player can place 3 pieces of terrain during setup (in the same order as islands, per usual), with a maximum of 1 massive terrain and 1 medium terrain per player. (Picture – Massive=7 in top 2 rows; Medium=7 in bottom row)
-The last player in the turn order chooses their home island location first, followed by the second to last player until the first player chooses their home island last.
-Each player must contribute an equal number of coins of any value or type in order to have 4 coins per wild island. (8 coins per player due to 2 wild islands per player)
-Gold bonuses will be applied permanently to the coin in question (ex: a 7 becomes an 8 ). The added value stays with the coin, and the coin can be “used” normally for the purposes of home island raiding, fort building, etc.
Here are the fleets in the order of play:
White Rose + crew
Virtuous Wind + crew
El San Jose + crew
Banshee’s Cry + crew
A7XfanBen “Universal Pirate Swan”
Black Swan + Captain Jack Sparrow (058 version), SS Bianco’s Haulers, helmsman, explorer, oarsman
Darkhawk II + Captain Blackheart, helmsman
Coeur + Deleflote, Auraa, Cissey
Banshee’s Cry + explorer, oarsmen x2
Rover + oarsmen x3 (2 on HI to start game)
Coins: Maps of Alexandria, Marksman’s Map, Pirata Codex, 5 7’s
-The idea was to take advantage of the Black Swan’s “Free Ride” ability to be immune while docked, flip coins home with CJS using the regular UPS (Universal Pirate Shipping) strategy, and then have the DHII pick up the extra crew left on islands and either bring them back home for more UPS opportunities, or sac them with Blackheart to turn the DHII into a menace.
Calypsos + Grapple shot, double shot
Morning Star + El Pescador, helmsman, oarsman
La Monarca + Dominic Freda (LE version), oarsman
Custom Queen Anne’s Revenge + custom Blackbeard, helmsman, explorer, oarsmen x2
Providence + Dr. Clark Lewis, helmsman, shipwright, oarsman
Devil Ray + Christian Fiore, helmsman
Rover + The Hag of Tortuga
UT’s: Fruit, Cannibals, Wolves
Hai Peng + Bartholomew Roberts, Gentleman Jocard, explorer
Neptune’s Hoard + Captain Blackheart, helmsman, explorer, oarsmen x2
HMS Patagonia + Robinson, Lord Mycron
HMS Grand Temple + OE Griffin, Admiral Morgan, helmsman, crew
Divine Wind + crew
HMS Clear Wind + crew
Sea Tiger + crew
It looked like a fun setup!
Spencer found Maps of Alexandria on the game’s first turn, which flipped all coins on wild islands face up for the duration of play. It revealed two 7’s on an island near me, which I was happy to flip home via CJS on my turn.
Pirata Codex was on an island in the east in between Spencer and Kyle, and could play a big role in some gold running logistics given that Wolves and Plague are also out there.
On the second round the Black Swan returned home, careful to stay docked somewhere and therefore be “safe” via Bianco’s Haulers. Still, the Hai Peng looked like a nice target.
Looking from west to east as various ships take advantage of round earth:
Peter grabbed some coins with the Hai Peng and then ducked into a fog bank with up to 3 other ships potentially approaching that same wild island. I want the 13 gold near Witch’s HI but the presence of Fruit complicates things a bit. Most of Xerecs’ fleet continues east, where Kyle has a ship docked and ready to explore the island where the Pirata Codex waits….
Xerecs makes a play for Lord Mycron’s house-ruled Ransom keyword, capturing the galley with the Morning Star after an assist from his beasties. I explored the Fruit island, putting it on the DHII.
Spencer and Kyle gathering some gold:
CJS was busy flinging treasures home as the DHII stayed at the island for protection. I also wanted the lucrative southwestern island, but had correctly assumed that canceller Christian Fiore laid in wait on the submerged Devil Ray. I also figured the Providence had a captain and so the move seemed quite risky. I considered moving both ships into the big fog bank, but by that point the Devil Ray would have been in cancelling range of the DHII so as to cancel her helmsman and prevent her from entering the fog bank, it being more than L away.
Notable developments in the center. Xerecs’ fleet regroups with the Patagonia safe at his home island, Mycron netting a 5 gold payout from Ransom. Pirata Codex is triggered, eliminating bad UT’s like Wolves. Peter has built a fort with the Hai Peng. Kyle uses his HMS Grand Temple to capture Spencer’s San Jose.
I took my ships back home, not wanting to lose my main ships in yet another fight against Witch. The other reason behind it was that Spencer was clearly winning, and it looked like the only chance Witch or I had to beat him was to not negate our own games by fighting each other. Basically, if Witch and I fought over the southwestern island, Spencer likely would have won easily.
The White Rose reveals a firepot specialist and sets the Divine Wind alight!
Xerecs sends his fleet against Gazerbeam’s fort, nearly making it abandoned with Mist Walker:
Witch scooped up the southwestern gold with the Providence while my Black Swan dismasted the Hai Peng. Calypsos pinned the Black Swan with a ram but couldn’t shoot due to Bianco’s Haulers. At the right, Spencer looks like the favorite to win but Kyle is towing his San Jose home with the GT.
The northern mess became uglier, with the Morning Star dismasted (I think by the Neptune’s Hoard), NH crippled, and Calypsos and Hai Peng sunk. Spencer takes advantage of the chaos and Peter’s weakened fleet to raid his HI with the Virtuous Wind.
The gold available in play is dwindling, with the finish near….
Spencer became even more aggressive with the Virtuous Wind, taking it to Xerecs’ HI via round earth. This would be the end of the junk, as I swooped in to steal the VW’s stolen loot. The Black Swan and DHII arrived on the scene via Deleflote and Sac respectively, though I think only one of them was able to board successfully. Mist Walker rammed the Black Swan but couldn’t win a boarding party, with the VW sunk in some kind of crossfire.
With time running out, desperation increases.
The game truly came down to a single die roll. Kyle rammed the QAR with two of his ships, stealing one of the coins Witch had stolen from Spencer, but failing the second board (with the GT no less) when Witch rolled a 6 to keep the other stolen coin!!
- Dan: 38 gold
- Ben: 37
- Spencer: 28
- Kyle: 19
- Billy: 19 (4 units in play each, Kyle with more points)
- Peter 15
A crazy ending to a memorable game! Yet another insanely close finish!! This meant that in the 3 5+ player games played so far on the weekend, they were decided by 0 gold (tiebreaker used), 1 gold and 1 gold again! O_O If Witch hadn’t rolled a 6 to defend his last coin it would have been in Kyle’s possession and I believe I would have won (unless it was a 1). This capped an incredible day for Witch as he also had won both of the 3 player 80 point games played while the Bowens and I were playing epic scale.
Alas, the game was marred by some factors, mostly a time constraint and some unfortunate debate/drama over when the last round would take place (so that all players would receive an equal number of turns). I can’t recall all the details but this was possibly the most riveting game we had during this weekend marathon, a 6 player game marked by various side conversations about strategy and player goals. It was really fun and interesting throughout, right down to the final player turn.