Command the Oceans – Whirlpool attacks=Failure (11/11/2017)

THE BIGGEST EVER

The French scuttle the Geographe to try and get Terrox to leave the Harbor.

The destroyed dock has finally been completely cleaned up, with half of it sinking and the other half disposed of. However, the damage dealt by the Cursed attack will take a while to repair fully.

With the Cursed basically gone, the French set about defending the whirlpool that Davy Jones/Calpyso created. Some cargo ships are finally able to enter the Harbor now that the battle has ended!

The Nautilus submerges to safety as the French have no way of getting at the Mercs right now. I have gone back to my original ruling on ram damage, which means that submerged submarines cannot do any ram damage. Each major faction only has a couple ways of dealing with submerged submarines, and it doesn’t seem fair for the Mercs to be able to endlessly take masts off enemy ships when nothing can be done about it.

A good strategy! With ships simply waiting their turn to enter the Castle waters in the battle area, some ships head south. They will round the terrain to the west and come at the Americans from the south. The Mercury is standing guard there, but it will be good for the Franco-Spanish to have another angle of attack.

By maneuvering perfectly, the French manage to extract the Monaque!

The Pequod is captured, with the Aaron Burr and Sioux derelict. This was taken before the end of the French turn.

The French win the battle up north and advance into American waters!! The Congress is dismasted by the Hercule and Mont Blanc, with the Superbe leading the charge west.

Deleflote gave the action of L’Argus to the Crete Argentee, who towed the Monaque to The Flat, extinguishing the flames and saving the ship!! This is a cool part about campaign games: you have so many ships available for support and rescue that oftentimes the most impossible maneuver or task can be accomplished due to the sheer amount of actions given out.

The Ville de Paris sets the Concord aflame, while the Soleil Royal helps to plug the gap in the French line.

The Solitaire has captured the Aaron Burr.

The graveyard for this faction turn, with the Peacock sunk by the Martinique and some fires put out. The destroyed dock is no more, but will live on in infamy!

Shot at by 4+ ships and an American artillery cannon, the Charlemagne goes from undamaged to derelict!!

Preble uses the President to capture the ship, as the French didn’t put an oarsman aboard!

The Saratoga and Hudson tow the ship down the chain, but where has she gone now?

Captured!! The Philadelphia received Preble’s AA this turn, allowing the ship to warp the French capital ship home and save her from the fires! In an extreme rarity, the ship went from French hero ship (the first to tow the Monaque out of the line to save her) to American capture! Going from healthy to derelict and aflame, the Americans have captured a big prize. This also swung the momentum completely the opposite way, as the French had a huge morale victory by saving the Monaque, but an even greater morale loss when the Charlemagne was nabbed before their eyes!

The 3+ American gunships in the way of the Santa Ana and Santo Columba hold their water, dismasting the SA after the Saratoga moved out of the way into a fog bank.

The Enterprise got bad fog rolls, but the Hornet and Mohican join the repositioned Mercury at the southeastern edge of Castle waters.

The Gold Eagle simply puts out the fire started by the Granada, the Harlequin misses the latter, and the Kentucky finally knocks a mast off the Asesino de la Nave.

The Jarvis and Kettering team up to hit the Superbe. The Kettering has turned into a mach speed weapon, going from the southwestern battle to the northern area of the French battle in just two turns with the help of extra actions from Commander Steven Decatur.

There seems to be a “danger zone” right where the Castle, Flat, and lumber island intersect. The area has been the place of the hottest action so far in this battle, and the masts are piling up. The Monaque, Charlemagne, and Pequod were all dismasted right around there.

Albert Crenshaw pushes the Albany home with all speed, but she might not make it. The Nene-nui succeeded with exploding shot, knocking out a reef that makes the 5-beach island more accessible!

American logistics in the southwest: towing and whirlpool defense patrols.

The Full Moon has been captured, ending the final symbol of Pirate resistance in the area. The Americans captured around 14 Pirate ships in the battle, which could be a high for any single battle in any of my physical campaign games.

Here you can see seven of those prizes, along with USS Jackson, who is receiving some fighting crew after leaving her cargo hold open for infantry earlier in the game.

Speaking of infantry, the Providence and Carolina load three units each. The Americans hope to unload them at the lumber island for some cheap defense against the French. However, we’ll eventually see if they’re too late….

The American graveyard for this turn. The second reef was destroyed by the Louisiana off Ruby Island, making American passage to the Castle easier!

In just the second turn of the battle, the Pirates have utterly defeated the English!!!

With an incredible turn, the Pirates dominate in their home waters. The Deliverance went 4/4 to knock 2 masts off the Guy Fawkes, and was followed by the Charles setting the Belle of Exeter on fire.

You may have noticed that the Tejon, Dolphin, and Rickets are not aflame anymore. The Pirates rolled three 5’s in a row to extinguish their flames, allowing those ships to hold their positions in the defensive circular line! The Revenge didn’t get her revenge against the English, going just 1/4. However, the White Rose and Black Mongoose were there to bail her out, going a combined 6/7 (or 5/7, either way great shooting). The BM went into the whirlpool itself to rake three English ships by the stern, scoring a hit on each.

The Fool’s Hope, Cutlass, and Raven damage the Forge and Wycliffe:

HMS Hastings gets hit a whopping SEVEN times during the turn, getting ravaged by 5 different ships.

Of the ten English ships in the area, none have more than 2 masts remaining.

With a wide-open area and two factions ready to go at it, the battle area has accumulated considerable wreckage and debris in a very short time.

Various ships in the Pirate fleet doing various things. A couple ships at the far left head to Dead Man’s Point for repairs, while some severely damaged ships north of the shipwreck look to repair as well. The Pirates are setting up a total blockade of the northern whirlpool, to prevent any hostile ships from coming out of it. At the bottom, support gunships patrol the reefs, guarding against attack.

Here you can see about 7 Pirate gunships speeding south to assist against the English, but it’s likely they won’t even be needed!

With the Tunnel as empty as it’s been in weeks, the Celtic Fury receives an AA to get into position. If you’re wondering, yes this means the Pirates didn’t even need both AA’s (they got both this turn) to do all that damage against the English, although I think the Fool’s Hope was given the other AA.

The ladder is raised once again, and Pirates will soon clamber up!

Here you can clearly see the hole left by the Pirate rock-blasting operations in the western half of the Tunnel; Mission has chosen the next spot on the eastern side, not far from the entrance.

With the Crusher and Celtic Fury just visible in the Tunnel, here are the Piratical activities of Turn 72.

Captain Mission’s Pirate Kingdom! The Pirate fleet is truly gigantic and contains a large percentage of their ships released by Wizkids. The ocean is just teeming with gunships at this point; I would estimate that any hostile ship dropped almost anywhere in the eastern half of the Sea of Allost would be set upon by at least half a dozen Pirate ships on the following turn.

From the foremast of the Foresight, the southern and northern entrances to the kingdom structure itself.

The Pirates and Cursed don’t like each other at this point, but neither side wants to engage. From these pictures you can see how close some of their game pieces are by the northern whirlpool, but both sides have adopted a kind of “convenient ignorance” when it comes to acknowledging the presence of the other. (a cold shoulder based on self preservation you could say)

It’s a curious thing that these Pirates aren’t nearly as excited about the shipwrecked gold as they were about the gold island. Captain Villanueva of the Rum Runner has been assigned to get the gold he himself discovered, but it remains to be seen if other Pirate ships will be sent over the reef.

Now for some rare views!

Looking from the northeast corner to the west:

From just above the newly constructed Plumb Point Lighthouse:

Didn’t get the right focus here, but massive size of the Tunnel and Roost dominate the horizon.

Difficult to get these shots from the corner. XD

I really like this one a lot though; it shows the Tunnel from a weird angle and shows the gold waterfall in the kingdom.

The current texture of the kingdom is not conducive to standing them upright, but the Pirates hired a bunch of infantry this turn, continuing their new theme of home defense over whirlpool expeditions.

The newly launched Bonnie Liz carries a few 2L ladders.

Maybe one of the coolest closeups yet:

Jade Rebellion turn

The Fallen Angel and Sea Hag lose a mast each, as the Jades reposition their ships and shoot on the way by.

The Hrothgar puts out her fire but misses the Pale Moon twice.

This part of the sea is on a bit of an incline, which has combined with dense wreckage (fast becoming one of my favorite Pirates CSG phrases XD) to make moving ships difficult. The Hrothgar is literally sailing over her own debris along with main masts from the Grand River (repairing herself with a shipwright at the right) and Executioner, possibly with more masts underneath those. O_O

The Fenrir captures the Executioner! Again, the reason they’re a bit apart is because the Executioner was getting caught on the Fenrir’s mizzenmast, which may be stuck under the Ragnarok and above the submerged Locker. What a mess! XD The Scorpion repairs with a shipwright, while the Fire Djinn hits the Flying Dutchman with a firepot for the second turn in a row!

As the Scorpion pitches to larboard, the Tiger’s Eye and Donar are mostly ineffective against the Monkey’s Paw and Sickle. The Hrunting is nearly trapped in the fog; when she tries to come out, almost any die roll will send her crashing into a friendly ship, which I usually play as forcing the ship back into the fog bank.

Sadly, the Beowulf may be doomed. Bucking the trend of ships putting out their fires (I think 4 ships in a row between the Pirates and the Hrothgar), her flames have spread to the forecastle.

The Corsair galleys in this picture are given actions, forcing them to fight the Cursed hordes who fell from the sky last turn! The Nubian Prince and Janissaries’ Blood win their boarding parties to send the Cursed troops to Davy Jones’ Locker, but the Majestic loses her helmsman. I may have the infantry cut down masts if they win a boarding party against a ship with no crew left.

The Ivory Star tries to come to the rescue, but it looks like the Beowulf will burn. The IS does knock a mast off the Sickle, who will probably retreat to the nearby Roost for repairs. At the right, the flood of healthy and pretty Corsair galleys continues, though they’re running out of places to sail.

The Asgard unknowingly joins Behemoth and Mist Walker in a fog bank, while the Polaris finally gets back to being an icebreaker! The Polaris was delayed in the Tunnel wall of fog banks by Cursed L-movers, and now has finally been able to sail north to smash a huge berg.

The Jades continue to fail in the northeastern area of the battle, though many of their ships are still advancing towards the combat area. The Pirates have simply fled, with the Fleur de la Mort turning around into the Tunnel and the Revenant hiding in the fog.

Wreckage, debris, and stormy waters. As I said last report, this most intense area of the battle has seen major damage dealt on both sides, so naturally it may be the first area to quiet down a bit. It’s still hectic obviously, but the SEVERE damage done to most of the gunships has left them shattered and their crews exhausted.

Craziness! Just as the Cursed line of defense begins to falter, the Jades are too exhausted to advance (just like in MANY real life battles, both on land and at sea). Various galleys are straggling towards the far west slaughterfield of action, but fog banks and their own allies are getting in the way right now.

A less impressive view from above, but cool nonetheless. It was perhaps inevitable that these two factions would have a major clash after a decent period of inactivity, and here we get to see a full-scale war with a battle front that stretches the entire length of their territorial boundary.

Here I liked the contrast between the white BC sails and the black sails of the Rook’s Folly and Harbinger:

Due to the Poor Adams, fog hoppers, and Cursed submarines, the battle has nearly reached the Jade resource island!

The Leviathan and Spilled Salt may get into action soon, seen at the top of the frame:

~~~~~~~~~~

IT WAS TIME!!!! At the end of Turn 71, I did another point count!!!!

You are not ready for this! XD Here are the three oceans:


9,078 POINTS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 

O_O

Shocked Shocked Shocked Shocked Shocked

Very Happy

The point count was insane! I had been planning it for a while, but wanted to try and catch it on some kind of peak, though there haven’t been many launches in a while. When the random resource roll wasn’t a 1 at the beginning of Turn 72, I knew it was time for another epic count. With the current resource change lasting for another 4 turns (out of 8 total) and no random changes occurring for a while, I wanted to do a point count before the game starts shrinking due to all the combat. After hitting 6,000 last time, I wanted to hit 8,000 to obliterate the game’s own record. I knew it was a good possibility given all the launches and how much time passed since the last count, but 9,000 wasn’t even on my radar. XD

Here we go!

Turn 71 point and ship count for Command the Oceans, November 11th 2017

Pirates: 105 ships, 1,840 points
Jade Rebellion: 62 ships, 1,187 points
Cursed: 61 ships, 1,138 points
English: 52 ships, 923 points
Spanish: 27 ships, 417 points
French: 101 ships, 1,804 points
Americans: 96 ships, 1,660 points
Mercenaries: 5 ships, 109 points

Totals: 509 ships, 9,078 points 

O_O

As compared to the last point count (October 6th), there are now FIVE fleets with OVER ONE THOUSAND POINTS!!!! O_O With the English not far behind!!

Overall, I thought it was cool to see how close the rivals were. The Jades and Cursed are nearly on completely equal footing, as are the French and Pirates. The Americans are the third-largest fleet but can certainly hang with the top two, while the JR-Cursed war threatens to whittle those down to a less competitive level. I see the English as the dark horse right now (as I plan to elaborate on when I do the factional analysis post), but their current struggles against the Pirates could dent their hopes quite a bit. The Spanish and Mercenaries realistically have almost no chance of winning the game, unless they can team with a very loyal ally and betray them at the very end after the ally’s fleet is decimated by war against the other strong factions. However, it’s clearly anyone’s game! Six out of the eight fleets are serious contenders right now, so the finish over the next 4-6 weeks should be anything but predictable.

Time for some stats:

Points per ship:
Pirates: 17.5 points/ship
Jade Rebellion: 19.1
Cursed: 18.7
English: 17.8
Spanish: 15.4
French: 17.9
Americans: 17.3
Mercenaries: 21.8

Average: 17.83

Surprised to not see the Cursed atop this list! Though they aren’t far behind the Jades, who have a VERY high percentage of gunships in their fleet, having operated with the same seven cargo ships for almost the whole game. (not really counting the Mercs who have two 32-point subs with the Nautilus and Terror maxed out) The average is also quite in line with my historical average, with Economy Edition having an average of 17.46 points per ship at the largest point count in that game, which is my second-largest physical campaign game. Thus, we can have a very solid estimator for CG sizes based on ship counts alone, simply multiplying by some number between 17 and 18 to get a solid estimate of the total points in play.

By percentage:
Pirates: 20.2% of the points in play
Jade Rebellion: 13.1%
Cursed: 12.5%
English: 10.2%
Spanish: 4.6%
French: 19.9%
Americans: 18.3%
Mercenaries: 1.2%

From this you can think about the various alliances (French/Spanish, French/English are pretty much the ones remaining at this point lol) or try to come up with scenarios where a faction could have a path to victory.

By ocean:
-These are extremely flawed at this point due to all the whirlpool traveling and battles, but serve as an indicator of the factional strength contained in those oceans, not the number of points actually sailing those oceans right this turn.

Sea of Allost: 4,165 points
Caribbean Sea: 1,340 points
Sea of Karkuda: 3,573 points

It’s OVER NINE THOUSAND!!!! XD Laughing

And now for the pictures of the full deckplate areas. This shows the original Pirate fleet location, although they now have more points allocated in Room #2 than #1 lol. The Guichuan is there since the Cursed area is full.

Nearly spilling over into the JR area:

The rest of the Pirate fleet! (with a column of English deckplates here as well haha. When you don’t know how the game will turn out it’s difficult to project deckplate space for future expansions)

Getting to the Jade Rebellion area…

Those crew at the bottom right are on the Grand River, my custom proxied by the Grand Dynasty.

The Cursed! At the upper right, I have stacked most of their crewless sea creatures to save space.

The Cursed recently spilled over onto a bookshelf in Room #2:

As promised, here is Wraith’s haul! He has been in play for a LONG time now, possibly 50+ turns. This is the result of his 6’s, though no named crew yet. Overall, 43 points of crew! If you’ve read this far into the report you get a little nugget of new information. XD I am allowing the Cursed to use any crew captured with this ability on any of their ships, as if they were normal Cursed crew. (whether or not that breaks the existing rules XD)

The English!

Despite having the 3rd-smallest fleet (at a whopping 923 points lol), the English have deckplates in three areas now.

The Spanish:

Similar to the Jades, they have needed to go underneath the Caribbean table to fit.

The Mercenaries, showing the setups on the Terror and Barracuda for the first time.

The French!!

The Americans! (with a big section of captured Pirates extending out from the right column lol)

I was actually going to do a bit more too haha – if I remember, I’ll try to take a picture of the entire GIANT deckplate area in Room #2 (where you see the French, some Pirates and some English above) and also count how many deckplates are in that area alone. XD It’s also the area where the English and Franco-Spanish were in Economy Edition, but with my extremelyconsolidated deckplate system for this game (necessary due to space constraints – 500 ships in the game!!), that area now has an unprecedented amount of stuff in it.

At 9,078 total points, this game is now far larger than Economy Edition and VASSAL Campaign Game 1 combined. It’s more than 3 times bigger than EE, and more than twice as big as CG1. Certainly seems unbelievable, but with all the pictures above, you can count the points if you want. XD

Enjoy it while it lasts, since I won’t likely be able to do this again for a LOOOOOONNNGGGG time. By that I mean like 3+ decades. XD

Anyway, thanks for reading, and I’ll be back with stuff I forgot lol. Won’t be able to play tomorrow but I hope to resume on Monday!

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