Pirates of the Caribbean movies – Ranking them all!

Ranking the Pirates of the Caribbean movies

Pirates of the Caribbean movies are my all time favorite.  I have found no better movie or series that combines action, adventure, excitement, and some historical details so beautifully and perfectly.  I like them so much more than other movies that they almost “break the scale” for me in terms of ranking other movies.  In addition, I usually enjoy even my least favorite Pirates of the Caribbean movie more than any other movies.

In Pirates CSG Podcast #30, I briefly ranked all 5 of the Pirates of the Caribbean movies.  You can find that podcast at the bottom of this page, but in this post I wanted to rank all of the Pirates of the Caribbean movies in text form, more comprehensively.  I know this is a little off-topic compared to my usual Pirates CSG focus, but between the 2007 expansion and intense relation to Pirates CSG (exact same theme), I think it’s quite fitting.  Keep in mind that my ratings are comparing these movies against each other – compared to all movies in general, I would rate them all about 9/10 or better haha! (I love them that much)  So without further ado, here is my official opinion on ranking what I believe to be the best movie series of all time!

1. The Curse of the Black Pearl

The first movie is the most classic.  A true swashbuckling film from start to finish, this movie resurrected the pirate genre and spurred a blockbuster series that has lasted 15+ years.  

Pros:

  • Cast and the characters they portray
  • Historical setting mixed with the right amount of fantasy
  • Understandable plot with twists and turns that make things exciting
  • ACTION!
  • Multiple climaxes in a way – many peak experiences throughout the movie
  • Unforgettable music, on par with the best in movie history

Cons: None?  I feel that CotBP is the most perfect movie I’ve ever seen!

Ben’s Rating: 10/10

Captain Jack Sparrow

Captain Jack Sparrow

Best game piece from Pirates CSG: Captain Jack Sparrow

This ship can move and shoot using the same move action. When this ship is given an explore action, you can swap a treasure on the wild island with a crew on any friendly ship.
Link: All Pirate Ships

  • Collector’s Number: 058
  • Faction Affiliation: Pirate
  • Rarity: C
  • Type: Crew
  • Point Value: 6

CJS is arguably the best crew in the entire game, as proved by VASSAL Tournaments #1 and #2. You could make a case that he is the single best game piece ever released by Wizkids. When most of the best fleets in the history of the game have this guy as their centerpiece, you know he’s amazing, and you also know that something went wrong. I do find it rather ironic that our beloved character is such a dominant force in the game, since he’s such a major character in the movies as well.

 

2. Dead Man’s Chest

The second movie was shot simultaneously with the third movie, and DMC does serve as a link to At World’s End while the first movie is really on it’s own in terms of the plot.  While Dead Man’s Chest is another fantastic pirate movie, it’s definitely not as perfect as the first one. (though it would be nigh impossible to match the original of course)

Pros:

  • We get to see Captain Jack in a completely different state
  • Great amount of fitting humor
  • Davy Jones and his crew are menacing but fun

Cons: 

  • No ship battle
  • Kraken a bit overpowered/excessive

Ben’s Rating: 8/10

Best game piece from Pirates CSG: HMS Endeavour

HMS Endeavour PotC

HMS Endeavour

  • Collector’s Number: 003
  • Faction Affiliation: England
  • Rarity: R
  • Type: Ship
  • Point Value: 21
  • Cargo Space: 4
  • Base Move: L
  • Cannons: 2L,2L,2L,2L,2L
  • Number of Masts: 5

This ship eliminates two masts with one hit.

Flavor text: Lord Beckett’s flagship and the symbol of the Crown’s power, HMS Endeavour is the most impressive warship on the sea.

Sure she didn’t play much of a role until the 3rd movie, but this cannot be avoided.  Just about on par with El Acorazado and the Constitution as the best gunship in the game. Combine the best guns money can buy with just about the best offensive ship ability in the game, and give those to the most offensively-minded faction, and you’ve got a warship for the ages.

 

3. At World’s End

The 3rd movie is in my opinion the most EPIC, which gets it major points in my book.  The movie is the culmination and grand climax of the first 3 movies, building everything up to some of the most epic moments ever seen in movies.  The humor is still there, the cast is top-notch, and there are few movies that can match its brilliance.  A complicated and difficult-to-follow plot is the only thing that holds it back from being as good as the first movie.

Pros:

  • EPIC!!  On par with Lord of the Rings for me.
  • Everything you could want in an epic/action/adventure/Disney/pirate movie
  • Climax and payoff of just about all major storylines built up from the start of the first movie
  • Incredible actions scenes including an epic ship battle
  • LUDICROUSLY amazing soundtrack

Cons: 

  • Overly complicated – plot can be very difficult to follow at times

Ben’s Rating: 9.5/10

Best game piece from Pirates CSG: Hai Peng

Hai Peng PotC

An afterthought in the movie, overpowered with the right crew in the game

  • Collector’s Number: 013
  • Faction Affiliation: Pirate
  • Rarity: R
  • Type: Ship
  • Point Value: 13
  • Cargo Space: 4
  • Base Move: S+L
  • Cannons: 3S,4S
  • Number of Masts: 2

Junk. If this ship has a captain crew, she gets +L to her base move.

But where would Captain Jack Sparrow be without a ship? It might not be a ship he even sailed on in the movies, but the Hai Peng is the fastest ship in the entire game, and the fleets involved in T1 and T2 prove how insanely effective it is to pair them up. The only reason the Hai Peng isn’t higher is because without CJS, the HP wouldn’t be as ridiculously good.

 

4. On Stranger Tides

The 4th movie was supposed to have a smaller budget and reduced cast from the trilogy of 1-3, so I went in with lowered expectations.  That was key to my enjoying the movie, as it turned out to be an (arguably inevitable) serious letdown to most of the fanbase.  With Captain Jack trying to hold up a lesser cast by himself, the movie just doesn’t have the magic, scale, and excitement of the originals.  A “new era” of Pirates of the Caribbean is born after the true high of AWE’s ending scenes.

Pros:

  • New characters to spice things up (though they aren’t quite as good as those from the original 3 movies)
  • Adventuring theme that may have been slightly lacking in movies 2 and 3

Cons: 

  • A bit “meh” in nearly every way – just not the same for cast, music, plot, action, or emotions
  • No ship battle – in fact, not a single cannon shot I believe!  🙁

Ben’s Rating: 4/10 (still 8.5+/10 compared to all other movies)

With this movie and the 5th one being released after Pirates CSG went out of print in 2008, there were no game pieces from this movie.  However, we can make customs!

 

5. Dead Men Tell No Tales

If the “lower budget” and different cast made me appreciate the 4th one more, I was overhyped for the 5th movie.  Although fantastic overall, myself and others had many gripes with the movie, from the casting to the plot to redundant repetition.  It’s a fun movie, just not quite as great as the trailers or cast would make you expect.  You can find my full review of the movie here.

Pros:

  • Humor – St. Martin town scene, wedding scene, etc.
  • Blurring of lines between good vs. bad – you can easily root for the antagonist

Cons: 

  • Wasted star power (Will Turner, Elizabeth Swann, and Paul McCartney are hardly in the movie!)
  • Continuity issues/plot holes
  • Too unrealistic – many bizarre things that were really obvious mistakes
  • Meh characters/acting – even Captain Jack is not the same anymore

Ben’s Rating: 6/10 (still 9/10 compared to all other movies)

Although there aren’t game pieces from DMTNT, I’ve made some customs that you can find at the bottom of the Epic Seas sheet (4th tab).

You can also find all the movies in boxed sets, not to mention the excellent soundtracks.

Here you can hear my opinion during the 30th episode of the Podcast.  I’ve also ranked the Top 10 Caribbean game pieces and the best game pieces from the set with multiple versions.

Check out the other episodes of the Podcast here.

 

Pirates of the Caribbean celebration game 1

Pirates of the Caribbean celebration game played in 2017 to celebrate the 5th movie and 10th anniversary of the 3rd movie! Click for the battle report!

Dead Men Tell No Tales Movie Review

Originally posted to Miniature Trading on May 30th, 2017

Dead Men Tell No Tales Movie Review

Here are my thoughts after seeing the movie a second time (first viewing was the first one I could go to, last Thursday 5/25/2017 at 7pm).

I thought the movie was great overall but a bit disappointing based on the previews and past movies.

Random things I liked:
-Jack pulling a pistol on Henry after Henry held a sword to him (like father like son, CotBP)
-Jack roping the shark, and tricking Carina
-Pretty much the entire St. Martin part, especially with Jack drinking rum on the way through and the actions/lines of the other pirates.
-Wedding scene was extremely random but funny
-Blurring of lines between protagonist/antagonist. If you hadn’t seen the previous movies, it would be very easy to root for Salazar (who never did any wrong, arguably other than killing defenseless pirates). None of the protagonists are as lovable as in the previous movies (other than maybe Barbossa), and they really don’t deserve everything they get in this movie. If this were anything like real life the bad guys won big-time. (also the Royal Navy wasn’t as “evil” as it was under Beckett, and they lost too)
-Post credits scene (mostly since it hints at a 6th movie)
-Barbossa talking about the Pearl only having one captain (AWE)
-I generally enjoyed the lines and comedy
-Not enough original music, though they did a good job reusing themes in new ways (Geoff Zanelli was supposedly a protege of Hans Zimmer but the lack of brilliance showed)

Things I didn’t like:
-They completely wasted their star power. Orlando Bloom, Keira Knightley and Paul McCartney got like 5 minutes of screen time combined. Everyone was hoping for more Will and Elizabeth after On Stranger Tides, but the movie almost completely ignored them.
-By extension, they wasted the Flying Dutchman. There were multiple scenes where it would have been perfect for Will and the FD to pop up. One was when Jack and his crew threw Henry overboard. Will could get angry at Jack and confront him, which could have led to Will and the Dutchman playing a role for the rest of the film (along with making a great entrance). Also, when Salazar grabs Henry, we don’t see him again until Salazar possesses his body (lol). This is another great opportunity – the Silent Mary is alone on the water, Salazar looks like he’s about to kill Henry, and then all of a sudden the Dutchman shows up and starts shooting at the Silent Mary!! Would have been a fun ship battle, maybe with the same ending if Salazar and his ghost crew just ran away towards the trident and Will can’t do much but watch. Also could have had the Dutchman on the other side of the divide with her own anchor. (can she shoot while submerged? Imagine seeing the FD zooming along underwater, shooting cannons out one side of the water and into the other at the ghost crew!!) An absolute utter waste of one of the coolest characters and coolest ships in the series.
-Continuity problems. Everyone is talking about how the whole flashback did away with the established story regarding Jack’s compass, but also his accessories and hat.
-Why did Salazar and his crew survive? Since they died in the Devil’s Triangle, but this also brings up the fact that they’ve done the same thing for every movie (undead/unkillable antagonist with cursed crew on a ship with some kind of supernatural power)
-Will should die since he has no heart (lol)
-Elizabeth doesn’t talk
-Henry and Carina are a bit bland, and I’m a bit sick of the forced love story between two characters we don’t have a lot of reason to care about (this aspect was far worse in OST but continues here)
-Plot revolves around an all-powerful device that gets destroyed almost immediately without anyone being able to use it hardly at all
-Carina is like the “science woman” who explains everything in plain detail to the audience, while everyone else in the film is a buffoon regarding it (except for Barbossa to some degree)
-Forced family theme (similar to the Star Wars problem) – in a big world/universe, why do random family connections unexpectedly happen all the time? Carina wasn’t that likable and the way and speed in which the concept was introduced didn’t make me care more about Barbossa (he’s already a great character)
-Why was a Royal Navy ship of the line (by the looks of it, nearly a 3 decker if I saw things correctly) able to catch the Black Pearl that night? Barbossa was running from the dead, so there’s no reason to not go full speed.
-Too magical: For me this movie had too many cartoonish, supernatural elements. Obviously that’s been a theme since the beginning, but the entire Trident sequence towards the end (from when they touch land until Barbossa falls) felt way too much like some Guardians of the Galaxy/cheap superhero kids movie sequence. It felt too “disneyfied” (I like Disney but the previous movies had more realism and historicity). Too much science/gems/magic/fake island stuff for me.
-Jack isn’t as enjoyable – I actually didn’t have as much of a problem with this like most people did, since it makes sense for him to be a washed up drunk after all he’s been through and frustrated with the Pearl still in the bottle.
-Pacing was a bit too fast – movie could have been longer with some more exposition/slightly more drawn out scenes. Some fast cuts during the action sequences (especially the night battle between Jack and Salazar) were hard to follow, tough to tell what was going on with the details.
-Another dead villain after one movie. I understand they aren’t sure about a potential 6th movie, but I thought Salazar was probably good enough to remain as a villain for more than one movie (not as good as Davy Jones).
-Salazar and crew too similar to DJ and crew: can’t step on land, can walk through stuff (brig cell w/ Henry)
-Davy Jones or Barbossa returning in another movie would continue to cheapen the threat of death for the main characters (Elizabeth and Blackbeard seem the most reasonably mortal)
-Why wasn’t Jack more hurt from getting stabbed with the trident? (even before it broke there was no blood or evident pain)
-Especially during my first viewing, it really didn’t look like Salazar was about to kill Carina at the end. It seemed like all 5 people on the chain could just keep climbing, with Barbossa letting Carina go ahead of him if he needed to defend her from Salazar. Jumping off and dying on purpose seemed completely unnecessary and was kind of a cheap death, especially with how little the audience likely cared about Carina and how much people loved Barbossa. (Jack also didn’t seem to care about Barbossa’s death at all, but he’s understandably happy to finally not have a rival for control of the Pearl for once)
-Jack just randomly didn’t have his signature hat on when sailing off with the Pearl at the end

I seem to have had the opposite problem most people had. My expectations were too high for this one (based on the cast and amazing previews, again, wasted star power), but low enough for the 4th one (which was originally going to have a lower budget, and obviously a different cast than 1-3). The 4th one was as good or better than I expected it to be, but this one was somewhat of a disappointment. It seems like others expected way more from the 4th but after that one (which most people liked far less than I did), their expectations were lower for this one.

I did enjoy the film a little bit more the second time, since I knew what to expect.

My updated rankings
1. 1 and 3 (1 is a more “perfect” movie due to 3’s plot and deals being hard to follow)
3. 2 (DMC)
4. 5 (DMTNT)
5. 4 (OST)

Also, I agree with most of this.  I’ve made some customs that you can find at the bottom of the Epic Seas sheet (4th tab).

Feel free to share your thoughts in the comments below!!  Dead Men Tell No Tales Movie Review

Pirates of the Caribbean Tribute Celebration game!

Originally posted to Miniature Trading on May 24th, 2017

This was a special game to celebrate the 5th (and possibly final) Pirates of the Caribbean movie being released this week, Dead Men Tell No Tales. It’s a PotC tribute game, with tons of ships and characters from all 4 movies represented.

Here are the participants. They each have special victory conditions, as they’re fighting for separate goals. This makes it a tiny bit like an RPG (role playing game), and should make for an interesting experience. (crew abilities found here)

English:
HMS Endeavour + Lord Cutler Beckett, Mercer
HMS Dauntless + Admiral James Norrington, Governor Weatherby Swann
HMS Interceptor + Mullroy, Murtog
Edinburgh Trader

At 86 total points, the English fleet is out for pirate blood. They will not stop until all pirates have been defeated.
Goal to achieve victory: Eliminate all Pirate ships and crew.
Pirates of the Caribbean Tribute

Captain Jack Sparrow:
Black Pearl + Captain Jack Sparrow, Joshamee Gibbs, Cotton, Marty, Pintel and Ragetti

Somehow the crew fit into the point and cargo limits of the ship due to the links! Jack is up to his usual tricks – staying alive by whatever means necessary. He’s got his full crew aboard to help him, which should make the Pearl a force to be reckoned with.
Goal to achieve victory: Be alive at the end of the game.

Davy Jones’ Cursed:
Flying Dutchman + Captain Davy Jones, Bootstrap Bill Turner, Jimmy Legs, Palafico
The Kraken

Davy Jones is out for more souls, with Jack Sparrow in particular on his hit list. However, he has a target on his back, and wants to live forever. This fleet functions as part of the Cursed faction.
Goal to achieve victory: Be alive at the end of the game. (bonus points for capturing as many enemy crew as possible, and for keeping enemies from finding the chest OR its key)

Hector Barbossa:
Hai Peng + Captain Barbossa, Cursed Crew 1, Cursed Crew 2

Barbossa is wise, and has a lot on his mind. He’d love to get the Pearl back from Jack, but avoiding the English and Davy Jones while doing so will be difficult.
Goal to achieve victory: Capture the Black Pearl. (bonus points for staying alive)

Blackbeard:
Queen Anne’s Revenge + Blackbeard

Blackbeard is the odd one out here, as the only standout from On Stranger Tides. However, his historical record speaks for itself.
Goal to achieve victory: Survive, eliminate other Pirate rivals (especially Jack and Barbossa), and end up with the most gold whether through coins or captured crew. (his ability lets you unload captured crew for gold worth their point cost)

Anamaria:
Jolly Mon + Anamaria (obviously illegal due to her point cost, but I’m also negating the Jolly Mon’s ability because she would weigh less than Jack, especially with all his gear lol)

Anamaria is still annoyed with Jack for not having gotten her ship back. She had to pay for the Jolly Mon to be raised from the bottom of Port Royal, and now demands payment AND another ship from Jack.
Goal to achieve victory: Receive gold AND a captured ship from Jack Sparrow. (can be any amount of gold and any ship in play, with bonus points for HMS Interceptor)

The Brethren Court:
Empress + Captain Sao Feng, Lian and Park, Tia Dalma
Ranger + Gentleman Jocard
Centurion + Captain Villanueva
Seref + Ammand the Corsair
Fancy + Capitaine Chevalle
Otter + Sri Sumbhajee
Ningpo + Mistress Ching

At 101 points, the Brethren Court’s fleet is the only thing capable of directly standing up to the Royal Navy in the Caribbean. Sao Feng has gotten the real Calypso aboard his ship, and intends to release her to combat both Davy Jones, the Royal Navy, and possibly Blackbeard as well. To do this they must get Ragetti’s wooden eyeball (Barbossa’s piece of eight) and Jack’s piece of eight, both of which start the game on the Black Pearl (though they may not realize this).
Goal to achieve victory: Release Calypso, defeat the Royal Navy, and be the last fleet standing.

It’s possible that more than one participant will achieve victory, at which point various tiebreakers may be used.

Now onto the house rules and other variables (forgot to use a few others I originally planned on):
Wind rules
-The Flying Dutchman can submerge. When submerged she follows the rules for submarines, except that she gets +L to her base move and cannot ram.
-Will and Elizabeth Turner will be in the Port Royal jail to start the game. This is where the Royal Navy will sail from. By docking at the port and being given an explore action, any Pirates (not the English or Cursed) can free them and use them if desired.
-Some crew have multiple versions; if that crew is on a ship, either version can be used on that turn.
-The undamaged Empress is standing in for the damaged version, which is the version I’m using stats for.
-Any UT’s can be loaded face down. No UT’s take up cargo space.

Custom UT rules:
Jack’s Compass: Lets you look at all face down treasures on islands and ships. (points to thing you want most)
Dead Man’s Chest and Davy Jones’ Key: If both are on the same ship, you can either kill Davy Jones outright or command the Flying Dutchman and the Kraken. (the latter of which could make you a huge target)
Curse of the Black Spot: Automatically makes this ship a target of the Kraken. (target changes if the Kraken already had a target)
Aztec Medallion: This ship’s crew cannot be eliminated.
Letter of Marque: English ships cannot attack this ship in any way.

Here is the setup. Port Royal is at the upper left, which is the northwest corner of the map. Isla de Muerta is at the top, and you can see that the Black Pearl is starting the game inside a fog bank nearby. Blackbeard has entered the area from the northeast, while Shipwreck Cove holds the Brethren Court’s fleet in the far east. Barbossa has emerged in the southeast. That small island near the center represents Isla Cruces, and Davy Jones and his Kraken are to the south of it. The big sandbar represents the one from At World’s End in the “Parlay” scene. Anamaria is on the Jolly Mon in the southwest.

The English, with the Dauntless anchored in a position similar to the outset of Curse of the Black Pearl. Three 4L and two 4S cannons occupy the fort, which fire in fixed lines of sight (no rotating their line of fire like normal cannons). The Turner couple is in jail.

Scenes from…
The Curse of the Black Pearl:

Dead Man’s Chest:

At World’s End:

World’s End! Ocean’s Edge! This game actually features a waterfall cliff.

A few turns in, and the Interceptor has explored the Sandbar, with Cannibals killing Murtog.

This looks familiar…

… ironically enough, Jack Sparrow has gotten the Curse of the Black Spot! The Kraken is after him! He also picks up Rum (which his whole gets drunk on), a Spyglass, and the key to Davy Jones’ chest. (NOT just a drawring of a key!)

Blackbeard aboard the Queen Anne’s Revenge has found both Plunder and Smuggled Goods, which will be worth 6 gold combined if he can unload them.

The Edinburgh Trader is the only English ship not to venture into southern waters, but the Flying Dutchman lurks underwater nearby. Barbossa is after the Black Pearl, and would rather not use his Jailhouse Dog to eliminate Jack’s Black Spot, hoping the Kraken can damage the Pearl but leave her intact so Barbossa can capture it.

However, the Brethren Court have other plans, which include taking Barbossa’s and Jack’s pieces of eight to release Calypso!

Barbossa tried to tell Sao Feng that his piece of eight was Ragetti’s wooden eyeball, currently aboard the Black Pearl with Jack. But Sao Feng didn’t trust him! The Empress gets the weather gauge and rams the Hai Peng! However, Sao Feng’s boarding party is repulsed, with Park taking the hit. The Centurion also rammed, taking out one of Barbossa’s cursed crew. Unfortunately Captain Villanueva, one of the Pirate Lords, died in the ensuing boarding chaos. This made Sao Feng come to his senses, and he agreed to not attack the Hai Peng any longer as long as Barbossa was telling the truth. (as a side note, Sao Feng has collected the pieces of eight from the 7 Pirate Lords in his fleet, so he need be the only one alive to release Calypso if he acquired all 9 pieces)

I forgot to take pictures for a while. The Black Pearl used her great speed and some occasional wind gusts to avoid the Kraken and Flying Dutchman. Jack decided to rescue Will and Elizabeth from the Port Royal jail, with no English threats guarding the harbor. However, this put him into a corner, surrounded by Port Royal on one side and Davy Jones and his pet on the other! Jack temporarily accepted his fate, letting the Kraken engulf the Pearl. He planned to fight his way out since he couldn’t run any longer.

Barbossa, Blackbeard, and the Brethren Court head northwest to seek out Jack and the Black Pearl, who were starting a brutal fight against the Kraken! The Seref was attacked earlier in the game by the Dauntless, and here she is being escorted by the Otter back to Shipwreck Cove where she can repair. Unbeknownst to the Brethren, Blackbeard deposited his stash of Plunder and Smuggled Goods in part of the town of Shipwreck, netting him 6 gold. Tia Dalma’s canceller ability halted the Dauntless and Admiral Norrington, so the English have sailed back south. Anamaria was headed to Port Royal to pick up Will and Elizabeth for their assistance, but strong and constantly shifting winds made her journey difficult. By the time she had nearly reached the harbor in this picture, Jack already had them aboard the Pearl.

This looks familiar! Ever the savvy pirate, Jack intentionally let the Kraken take the Black Pearl near Port Royal, who had a cannon in range of the beast.

Devastation: after a fierce fight, the Black Pearl is gone. The Kraken is mortally wounded and has taken damage from the Empress, who used Tia Dalma to cancel the Kraken keyword. All hell has broken loose, as the Royal Navy contingent engages the Brethren Court. Blackbeard has left the scene to pursue Barbossa and the vulnerable Otter with Sumbhajee aboard. However, Barbossa is using the Hai Peng’s speed to full advantage, racing towards the ocean’s edge/world’s end. Anamaria spots him and looks to join, eager to do anything but join the melee up north.

With a timely AA from Beckett, the Royal Navy unleashes English gunnery! The Fancy, Ningpo, and Centurion are quickly dismasted, leaving the Ranger with no support. Even the Interceptor and Edinburgh Trader are available, having no better things to do.

In another unintentional irony, Barbossa steers the Hai Peng off the edge of the world and over the waterfall! Anamaria follows him in desperation on the Jolly Mon!

In the chaotic aftermath of the main battle, the Royal Navy continues to reign supreme. The Flying Dutchman finally was able to get at Sao Feng in the Empress, which sank. Davy Jones then turned his attention to the Dauntless, with Jimmy Legs saccing Lian to provide a move+shoot. It went horribly, and the Dauntless took advantage by blasting off 3 of the FD’s masts. The severely weakened Kraken has surrounded the Edinburgh Trader (again), but the Endeavour and Interceptor are healthy, the latter having captured the Ranger and Gentleman Jocard for the fun of it.

Here’s a cool sea-level view near a rocky outcropping, showing the Kraken in a familiar place and the Dutchman’s gunports. Especially with the Endeavour looming, you can tell the battle is going in favor of the English.

After a turn in Davy Jones’ Locker, Barbossa has succeeded in rescuing Jack and his motley crew from the depths!!

Here is the Black Pearl setup with everyone on board!

The English were able to kill the Kraken and capture the Flying Dutchman.

Knowing they must team up with each other to stand a chance against the Royal Navy, the Pirates band together and fight! A shift in the wind gives the English the weather gauge! The Black Pearl is quickly dismasted, while Blackbeard’s ship loses two masts. The partially repaired Seref arrives on the scene, but the Otter has already been dismasted. The Edinburgh Trader engages the Empress.

Despite the QAR sinking and having just two ships left, the Pirates put up a good fight.

In the end the Royal Navy emerges victorious, having accomplished their goal of ridding the Caribbean of piracy!
Pirates of the Caribbean Tribute

The English definitely benefited from being out of the action during the middle of the game, and basically all the pirates wanted something from Jack, which led to infighting. The themed strategies were fun to watch play out.

This was a fun game that showcased a ton of aspects from Pirates of the Caribbean. I hope you enjoyed reading about it, and I hope my videos will improve over time. I also recorded my first few videos for Instagram, where you can hear the background music I had on and even glimpse a few moments that the pictures don’t show.

The Jades can use Calypso too! A good game – May 4th, 2018

Another game was played between A7XfanBen and JohnLock

I went first with The Jades can use Calypso too! JohnLock followed with a Pirate fleet comprising some of the best ships in the game, including the Banshee’s Cry and Hai Peng. 

Once again we had 10 wild islands with 3 coins apiece, and flat earth rules. 

The Pirates took off for 4 different islands, but the Virtuous Wind had already scoured one of them. I purposely went for islands farther from home, knowing I could probably get close gold later. Calypso got into action early, allowing the Tiger’s Breath to explore an island in the south that would have taken longer to get to. 

Here I wanted to try raiding the Pirate home island, but Calypso and Cheng couldn’t come up with a whirlpool in the north. The Virtuous Wind instead headed northeast. 

Seeing both Pirate gunships (Hai Peng and Carrion Crow carried captains) away from the Pirate HI, I decided it was time for the VW’s raid. Throughout this game, both of us had dismal luck with whirlpool travel, and Protection from Davy Jones wasn’t found until the end. 

Having found the Jade UT earlier, I was taking a big risk going to the Pirate HI instead of just going home with the 7 the VW had. Risking both the UT and the 7, the VW only robbed a 1 coin. 

Though the Pirate brigade did turn for their robbed home island afterwards, I decided to “ride out and meet them”. 

Smile

 The Hai Peng had 3 coins aboard, and I figured the VW could win the fight. The Hades’ Flame and Carrion Crow have warped to the southeast, losing masts. 

The Hai Peng rammed the VW instead of docking at the home island, taking off a mast but being dismasted in return by the Wind. This was my golden opportunity to cash in and tow the HP home for a bunch of gold. 

Using a little-known rule, from Page 10 of the Reference Diagrams I confirmed that I could capture and tow the Hai Peng with the Virtuous Wind since the HP was derelict and her bow was already in contact with the VW. The VW moved S to enter a new whirlpool Calypso had created (Clutch Calypso! XD), warping back to the Jade HI in a jiffy! 

Both fleets maxed out their gold scores at the end, specifically the Jades with you guessed it, Jade. XD The VW used the UT to double her old 7 coin into 14 gold after the Tiger’s Paw took the stolen 1. The TP then gave the 1 back to let the VW double that coin too. Good thing, since unfortunately I would need it…. 

In very improbable fashion, the scores end up tied at 58-58!!!! 

The Jades won on both tiebreakers: they led the Pirates in points in play (my favorite tiebreaker, and something that should have been a standard rule) 55-21, and led in masts standing 7-5. 

I’m very happy with how my new fleet performed in its first game, essentially winning against a fleet using some of the best Pirate ships out there. We both made some mistakes; the Hai Peng ramming the Virtuous Wind instead of docking home her gold led to the Jades capturing the infamous junk, while I should have been more conservative actually, since going for the HI raid only resulted in 1 more gold. If the VW had been successful in doubling both the 7 and the 4 from the island northeast of the Jade HI (Carrion Crow eventually got the 4 for the Pirates), the Jade profit would have been 22 instead of 15. However, then I probably wouldn’t have captured the HP, who netted 12 gold from her 3 coins. So many moments, decisions, and strategic moves that matter in the end – one of the reasons I love Pirates so much! 

Overall though, a very fun, close, and strategic game that came down to the… rope? XD See you next time!!

Conclusion of tournament + HMS GT and Altar of the Loa fleet – February 22nd, 2013

Battle Report with earlier tournament results

The Pirates took the first two games of the final series, beating the English.

For the third game, I decided to mix things up to see just how good the Pirates are. The English were automatically the first player, and they made the Pirates’ HI next to their own.

On the first turn, the London and Hound (towing Gibraltar) moved towards the Pirates. The Star of Siam and Banshee’s Cry went off to get treasure as usual (as did the Aberdeen Baron). Normally the Neptune’s Hoard goes to a wild island on the first turn (and she can get there because of the sacced action), but it was obvious that the English would be able to fire upon her after she docked. Instead, she moved and shot at the London, using the extra action to eliminate all 4 of the London’s masts.

After the Hound (who didn’t have a captain) moved it into position, the Gibraltar shot at the Hoard and took out 3 of her 4 masts. By this point, the Aberdeen Baron was returning home with 8 gold, 2 of them from Smuggled Goods. The Star of Siam had grabbed some gold for the Pirates, and the Banshee’s Cry used it to build Dead Man’s Point on the middle island, which she had just explored. Afterwards, the Cry used Screw Engine to move to the last wild island, the only one yet to be explored.

The Hound wanted to finish off the Neptune’s Hoard, but the Hoard still had plenty of crew left to sac. She zoomed away to assist the Cry in emptying the final wild island. The Hound used to the Gibraltar to destroy Dead Man’s Point, and the gold left over was soon picked up by the Aberdeen Baron.

The Neptune’s Hoard sacced all of her crew (other than Captain Blackheart) to get home in just a few turns, staying out of range of the Extended Range guns of the Gibraltar. The Star of Siam also sacced the rest of her crew to pick up the last two gold coins from the island she had explored earlier.

Since she didn’t have any sac crew, the Banshee’s Cry was stuck moving at L+L+S speed (so slow! Conclusion of tournament) to get home, with both Barbary Banner (worth 5 gold) and another coin aboard.

Now things got a little crazy: this was the best part of the tournament. The Hound had just finished destroying Dead Man’s Point, but the fort had got off a shot, which took out 1 of the Hound’s 2 masts. The Hound and Gibraltar would be able to cut off the Cry before she got back home. However, the Hoard took Don Pedro Gilbert (the sac crew for the Star of Siam) away from the Star, and sacced him (a sac crew saccing another sac crew since there weren’t any others left) to move within range of the Hound, and she also moved so that she blocked the Hound. With her final mast, the Hoard dismasted the Hound, and the Cry was safe to run home. However, the Aberdeen Baron had the gold from the middle island, and was also racing home. In the end, the Banshee’s Cry was able to get home first (only because of her helmsman, however), giving the Pirates the narrow victory!

The Pirates’ Norvegia fleet proved to be the best of the bunch, winning even in the face of tough odds. They have won the tournament, but I think I’ll test the fleet against my HMS Grand Temple fleet.

Additional Comment:

The HMS Grand Temple fleet beat this fleet in all three games. The GT was able to crush the treasure runners before they got back home. The devastating UT’s helped a bunch, but the English still won the third game despite not using the UT’s.

Additional Comment:

Today the Altar of the Loa fleet went against another 60 point fleet. The fleet consisted of HMS London, HMS Victor towing the Tower flotilla, the Bonnie Liz, the Bloody Jewel, and Le Bon Marin. For the Pirate fleet, Becalmed and Divers were used in place of Mermaids and Favour of the Gods, since they should be banned (and I don’t have them).

The first game went according to plan for the Pirates, who were able to get to an MI, and set up the Altar of the Loa system. Becalmed was used to delay the enemy ships while the White Rose raced to the island. The Pirate navigator on board the Rover helped the slower ships get there quckly. Once there, the Pirate ships began saccing crew to control the other fleet, and moved their ships into firing range of the Pirates, who picked them off easily. Due to Becalmed, the other fleet wasn’t able to give actions to their ships on any turn. 

The second game was much more competitive, and fun. Since the Pirates went second, Becalmed was only able to affect 2 of the 5 enemy ships. When the Pirates got to the MI, they rolled a 2, which forced them to move all of the island’s treasure to another wild island. Since the MI requires a replacement treasure to be present, the island was a dud for AotL. Of course, they picked the closest island around, but the Bloody Jewel got there first. She picked up some treasure, and then sacced both her helmsman and her explorer to take over the Pirates’ turn. This seriously hampered the strategy of the Pirates, as their tactics were being used against them! However, the Bloody Jewel only had those two crew, so the Pirates were able to take their turn normally in the next round. By this point, Le Bon Marin and the Bonnie Liz had returned home with a total of 12 gold, and sailed back out for more.

Now the Mermaid (of the Pirate fleet) docked at the island with AotL, and rolled a 2, forcing the UT to the center island, where things got heated. The Darkhawk II hit the Victor and sacced some crew so that the other fleet wouldn’t have their turn. The Banshee’s Cry grabbed the last coin on the island, and the White Rose managed to sink the London, Bonnie Liz, Bloody Jewel, and Bon Marin all in quick succession, since they were dead in the water and the Rose was able to get off 8 shots per turn. The Bon Marin went down with 2 gold aboard, which brought the gold total to 13 for her fleet, needing just 2 more to win (since a 2 was replaced with AotL). The Victor was blasted by the Rose as the Cry took home the gold. In the end, the Pirates won with 15 gold, winning by the slimmest of margins.

The Pirates went second in the third game, and again things deteriorated when the MI roll landed with a 2. The White Rose used Havana Black to sac an oarsman and dismast the London and cripple the Victor, while the Darkhawk helped out with a hit on the London. I’m not entirely sure of all the details from the last game, but somehow the Pirates managed to squeak out another victory. Things looked bad for them at first, but once they got ahold of AotL, they were able to dominate the game.

So, “The Pirate’s Way” fleet is currently 3-0 through 3 games, and it’s a very interesting way to play. I would recommend trying it out; it’s very fun. The fleet is not unbeatable, but it has a lot of things going for it.

What is a pokéship?

Originally posted to Miniature Trading on June 23rd 2017

What is a “pokéship”?

crsluggo wrote:
Please excuse my ignorance, but I see this term “pokeship” referenced from time to time on this site. What defines a pokeship? Is it good, bad, indifferent? Is there a set or sets in which they appear frequently? What are some examples of a pokeship?

(NOT laughing at you, I’m laughing at the concept and silliness of it all lol)

LOLOLOLOLOLOL Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing

XD

As far as I know the termed was coined by Holofernes back when the last sets were being released.

You’ve probably heard of the Pokemon phenomenon, which I happened to grow up with and love, hence why it’s even funnier to me haha. (scroll through post heh)

Pirates CSG Scythe Scorpion ship

Scorpion ship literally called “Scythe”

What is a Pokeship

Scyther card from 1999

Pirates CSG Bombardier

The Bombardier uses flamethrower! XD

What is a pokéship?

The mighty Charizard

Pirates CSG Skin Flayer Switchblade

The Skin Flayer, a Switchblade

Kabutops

The hoist is a lot harder to pin down…

Pirates CSG Hoist Buscador

The Buscador, a Spanish Hoist ship

Mawile