December 14, 2021 at 1:04 AM #14129December 18, 2021 at 8:39 PM #14151
Last night I had a couple of friends over for games, which included a trial game of Pirates! I kept it simple to start with, using basic ships without keywords and sticking to single faction, 40 point fleets. My friends selected the French fleet and Pirate fleet, while I took the British.
The fleets were not master crafted affairs; I used what I had, though I made a point of including one five mast gunship in each and a couple of speedy gold runners as a minimum. No crew were included for simplicity.
Standard rules, no terrain and rather than counting out a gold value, I used random value coins. I like that wildcard.
Our table set up was pretty basic and all three of us ended up with home islands more or less in a row against the southern board edge. The British were on the left, Pirates middle and French right.
In the first few rounds the British, Pirates and French rushed north to the three most distant islands with our quickest gold runners, while our slower ships sailed to the closest middle isles. The pirates split off aggressively, attacking their two neighbours, attempting to plunder the middle islands while our gold runners were away. The pirates scored first blood, with the Harbinger blowing a three mast French ship to dereliction before using her power to capture and return both ships to the Pirates home isle for repair. The pirates attack on the British fared poorly, with the single ship out-gunned and derelict. Unfortunately for the British, the pirates scuttled the ship before they could capture her!
Meanwhile to the north, the French were hot on the tail of the cheap, single mast pirate ship attempting to plunder their northern island. This is where our ‘moment of the game’ occurred, with the British and Pirates expecting the French to attempt to manoeuvre close for a shot… but instead the French ship performed the first ram action of the game. A quick rule review… roll higher than the number of masts. Which was one. We all burst out laughing as the French ship smacked into the cheeky Pirate, making it a derelict, before boarding and retrieving the treasure. The fast gold runners of the French and British could now loot the northern islands with impunity and no more conflict occurred.
Back at the middle islands, the repaired Pirate fleet set sail again, sending their recently captured French ship for another cheeky grab at the British middle island, while their five mast Harbinger crept towards the French home island and the hovering French five mast gunship. The French-now-Pirate ship engaged the British but was devastated by long range cannons and again derelict by the British. With much thanks, they towed the Pirate-French ship home and and made her the British-Pirate-French ship.
By now most of the gold was taken. The French and Pirates exchanged a lot of insults, but little cannon fire. The game was almost over, so the British snuck over to the Pirates home isle and stole a treasure. Just because they could. With no more gold to be had, we called the game and added up the plunder.
The British had the most coins, the French not too far behind and the Pirates got an A for effort.
It was a quick, simple and fun game, with a few funny moments and we all agreed we’d happily play again.December 18, 2021 at 11:36 PM #14153
@Shamsy: Nice game! This is the thread where battle reports go.
Standard rules, no terrain and rather than counting out a gold value, I used random value coins. I like that wildcard.
I generally like random value coins as well.
Was the Harbinger the Pirate 5 master? She has the ship stealing ability; the Revenant can shoot through other ships but doesn’t have the Harbinger’s ability.December 19, 2021 at 1:51 AM #14154
Ah yes! Harbinger is the one! I felt Revenant was wrong, but the name had stuck with me. I’ve corrected the battle report. I didn’t think to write down or photograph the other ships, so while I could take a look and remember most of them, it probably adds little to the report. Next time I will record the ships properly so the ones that have stand-out turns get a mention by name.
I do see some possibly unbalanced outcomes with random coins (all the higher value being near one player, for example), but it think it’s fun to play that way. It does also preclude one way to finish the game (by reaching a certain gold value), but again, I think I’d prefer to play until all gold was plundered anyway.December 22, 2021 at 2:04 PM #14204
Thank you to Xerecs for inspiring me to do my first video battle report:
Another BR! (very engaging 100 point game)December 22, 2021 at 7:00 PM #14209XerecsModerator
Thank you to Xerecs for inspiring me to do my first video battle report:
Yoooooo! You finally did one! Awesome!
I think the difference in collections especially showed, but also I think play styles too. Your fleet clearly had a purpose built objective with some strats and combos you wanted to pull off and did. The other fleets seemed to lack that. Then again, the report is mostly from your point of view so they could have had combos and things they wanted to do but couldn’t.
I know that at 100 points I’d have had at least one maybe two full loaded gunships, between the Acorazado, RV Constitution or HMS Grand Temple. Supporting them I’d have whatever I could fit into the fleet once the gunships were fitted out.
Seeing this I’m now putting some serious thought into a trip north to Bellevue. IF it were to happen, it probably wouldn’t happen until some time next year, possibly after the Summer.December 22, 2021 at 7:13 PM #14210
Seeing this I’m now putting some serious thought into a trip north to Bellevue. IF it were to happen, it probably wouldn’t happen until some time next year, possibly after the Summer.
Epic! If it happens we’ll just make sure to plan it really well in advance.December 22, 2021 at 7:18 PM #14211XerecsModerator
Epic! If it happens we’ll just make sure to plan it really well in advance.
Indeed, and perhaps not just me, but one or both of my brothers. Imagine, a genuine 6-7 player game….. We’d need more than 6 islands! 😀December 22, 2021 at 7:21 PM #14212
Imagine, a genuine 6-7 player game…
Witch actually has a playgroup where they do 10 player games. O_O But it requires him to make all sorts of house rules and extra win conditions so the game doesn’t take super long. XD I hope to play in that group at some point.December 23, 2021 at 3:36 AM #14215
I enjoyed the video battle report. There were a few game mechanics and terms I am not familiar with, which just reminds me how early I had to drop out of playing. You clearly put a lot of thought into the fleet where I think I’d just throw together a few ships and crew and see what happens.December 23, 2021 at 10:14 AM #14216
I enjoyed the video battle report. There were a few game mechanics and terms I am not familiar with, which just reminds me how early I had to drop out of playing. You clearly put a lot of thought into the fleet where I think I’d just throw together a few ships and crew and see what happens.
Thanks for the feedback and for watching! Indeed, my mindset nowadays (after over 450 plays of this game) is stuff like “what can I pull off”, “how can I cause shock”, “could I really win with this crazy fleet”, etc. XD I want to stretch the boundaries of what people expect from fleets and gameplay, and win with new or very infrequently used combos.January 2, 2022 at 12:33 AM #14290
Last night saw the second game of Pirates, with four participants this time! As with the first battle, I kept it simple as we learn the game and made all the 40 point fleets for the players. Each fleet was a single faction to assist in keeping track of ships, and I ensured each fleet had a five mast gun-ship and at least one fast gold-runner. I’ll add that I picked my fleet last out of two remaining options (Pirates and Americans), so there was no bias or advantage in building fleets. Due to my limited collection (about 50 ships), the French fleet came in at 39 point. I mention this because for this game, I brought in a few more rules and bits so we can ease into play with the full gambit of rules. Each player was given 5 extra points for crew (with the French getting 6) so each fleet was 45 points total. I let people pick the crew from generic options. The Spanish, Pirates and British all selected a Captain and Helmsman, while the French elected to take a Captain, Explorer and Cannoneer.
The Spanish and British players placed their Helmsman and Captain on their five mast gun ships, El Neptuno and HMS Lord Algernon respectively. The Pirates elected to add the Captain to the five mast Revenant and a Helmsman to Neptune’s Hoard. The French added their Cannoneer and Captain to five mast Le Dauphin Royal while the Explorer was assigned to Le Pique.
This was also our first game with a Keyword, Schooner. I initially wanted to throw in some terrain, but as it was the French players first game and the British player wanted to keep a limit on the number of extra rules being introduced, we elected to stick with islands only.
Here are a few pictures of the ships in each fleet.
The islands were placed, we played flat Earth, an assortment of coins were selected (8 per player of random value) and home islands assigned. I got a bit lost in figuring who would chose a home island for who, but the players seemed to reach a consensus we were all happy with.
The British wound up in the middle, with the French Northeast, the Spanish West and the Pirates South East. You can see our set up in the below picture.
With sea shanties blasting from the speaker, the game got under-way.
The game got off to a quick start, with the British rushing East to contest the islands below the French and above the Pirates. The Pirates, seeing a hotly contested area to their North, sent only Carrion Crow to see if she could snatch and run with a couple of coins, while Revenant pondered towards the British schooner Apollo who was busy loading up some treasure for the British. The Spanish took advantage of their isolation, sending El Leon and El Duque to gather gold while the nippy schooner La Cazadora headed North East to contest an wild island to the West of the French. Finally, the French split, sending Le Dauphin Royal South where she could fight the British and the remaining three faster ships set sail West for plunder.
HMS Oxford rammed the Carrion Crow, before exchanging cannon fire and ultimately sinking her as she tried to steal a few coins. First blood to the British! The Crow did land one shot though, so the Oxford got a bloody nose for the effort. Meanwhile, Revenant had shot Apollo, causing her to become derilict after she had already loaded a couple of coins. It was an easy choice for Revenant to tow Apollo home with her treasure. Neptune’s Hoard and Batavian Bat flew West to grab what gold they could before the Spanish laid claim to everything to the West.
The Spanish continued to plunder unopposed with El Leon and El Duque, while La Cazadora fought the French and successfully rammed Le Pique, causing her to become derelict. Revenge came quickly though in the form of Le Mercure, who shot La Cazadora, in turn causing her to become derelict. Meanwhile, El Neptuno crept closer to the conflict as the French Duc De Bourgogne raced to join the fight.
Le Dauphine Royal fired upon HMS Cumberland, setting her derelict before Lord Algernon appeared to fend off the French. This saw the beginning of a fierce broadside battle that lasted three turns before Le Dauphine Royal was sunk (yep, the British got over-eager and fired too many cannons). A badly wounded Lord Algernon limped back home, towing the derelict Cumberland in her wake. Interestingly, or perhaps a bit of a blunder, HMS Oxford likewise chose to return home to repair, rather than exploring and taking what gold she could from the far Eastern isle.
Fast as lightning, Neptune’s Hoard retuned a fair haul of treasure to the Pirate home isle, while the Batavian Bat set off for a second slow plod to fetch a small batch of gold from the island to the Pirates North. The captured Apollo repaired one sail and went off to grab the last coin from an explored island, while Neptune’s Hoard set off at speed for the Easternmost isle the British left un-plundered. Revenant sailed toward the British to cover Neptune’s Hoard. The Spanish Neptuno caught up to and fired upon both Le Duc De Bourgogne who was coming to fight and Le Mercure who was attempting to tow the capture La Cazadora home. Some lucky rolls saw her adding two more derelicts to the game. At this point the French were out of ships and without any gold, decided to start furiously drilling holes in their hulls, remarkably scuttling three derelicts ships over a couple of turns, allowing the Spanish to only tow one ship slowly home.
By this point the French were out of the running, there would be no means to contest the remaining gold on wild islands (though HMS Cumberland had a go at intercepting the Spanish) and it was clear the game was concluded. We added up the loot and scores were as follows:
Pirates with 41 gold
Spanish with 23
British with 10
French with their bravery undeniable.
Our new player really enjoyed the game and as with last time, we all agreed it was a fun and enjoyable time. I’m looking forward to the next game, though I do really need a few more ships in my collection so that we don’t need to recycle some ships each game.January 25, 2022 at 12:45 PM #14385RandyModerator
Welcome to Ice World 2022. Simple idea: Three fleets featuring at least one Ice Breaker each. All Wild Islands are situated inside a ring of icebergs. While Ice Breakers are meant to forge a path and deal with the bergs quickly, the ever changing map could become a frosty sea of terror for hopeful treasure runners. Standard set up, however random gold amounts were chosen to be placed on islands along with four random Frozen North UT’s. Mostly an excuse to give some new Frozen North ships their Maiden Voyages.
Vikings v French v Spanish
All three fleets begin their journey and make a path into the fray. Immediately, Le Breton takes the first hit from a moving iceberg.
Without missing a beat, Le Breton continues to open up the path for her fleet, while La Dijon makes the first explore action. Le Coeur de Lion stays close to her cohorts, and La Lyon heads North into Viking territory.
Le Lyon sees her chance to claim the offensive upper hand in the North, and moves to attack Muninn. Unfortunately, she misses all three of her rank 1 cannon shots, but Gendarmerie Rene Moreau manages to successfully make his only attack in the game.
With a successful extra action, courtesy of Sigurd Anderson, Muninn obliterates Le Lyon just for having disrespected her so blatantly. Polaris and Beowolf continue their path of treasure collecting in the North.
Le Breton has another close call with an ice berg but narrowly evades its clutches. Back at the French Port, Le Coeur de Lion uses Runes of Speed, which she acquired at a mid positioned island, to return home and hastily evade the encroaching Muninn Murderer. La Dijon sneaks through the icebergs, avoiding damage and finishing off the initial scoring turn of the game.
Having made her way across the Southern edge of the map to threaten the French, La Tartessos finds herself in the death path of Muninn. Muninn relieves the Spanish behemoth of two masts.
Feeling free of La Tartesso’s threats, Le Coeur de Lion makes her way out to collect more treasure, while Le Dijon hides in the fog. La Hada remains safe at a central wild island with the help of Bianco and his Haulers, and the Vikings prepare to take treasure from two more islands in the North.
In a poor choice of allegiance, La Tartessos tests her might on the passing Coeur de Lion, dismasting and sinking the sneaky French vessel.
Still unable to attack La Hada, Muninn aims to finish the job she started on La Tartessos, and completely dismasts her.
Meanwhile, Le Dijon gets her first taste of ice while returning to the West to secure some previously explored islands. Exceeding French dismay, her cohorts get another taste of death in the South when Muninn swiftly sinks Le Breton.
While their gunship is securing offensive prowess in the South, Beowolf and Polaris return home with gold and some newly acquired Unique Treasures they are preparing to deploy.
The French get some karmic revenge rolling an iceberg combo that sends it directly into the bow of Muninn.
Later, La Hada finally makes her way home with a large amount of gold. Muninn gives chase, hoping to use her last remaining bit of firepower to thwart the Spanish.
El Profeta prepares to explore a wild island that protects her from an incoming iceberg. La Dijon also sees a second iceberg locking into place on the island she had just explored.
Doing her best to make haste, La Hada nearly arrives to the safety of home. But the Vikings are watching close and determined to stop Spanish progression without having their say. El Profeta finds the final Unique Treasure, but keeps her acquisition a secret.
In the West, the same iceberg that pestered La Dijon previously, returns to stop her dead in her tracks. With a decent amount of treasure aboard, the shipwreck becomes a focal point for the opposing nations.
Vikings unleash Runes of Magic on a nearby iceberg sending it directly into the port side of La Hada.
Muninn now has her chance to bring the Spanish vessel to a full stop, and does so, derelicting La Hada with two successful shots.
In the North, Beowolf utilizes Runes of the Serpent to dock at a nearby iceberg. With many prospects on multiple sides of the map, the Viking captain is unsure of where to appear next turn.
Seeing El Profeta make way towards home, and the derelict La Hada, Muninn rams into the last remaining Spanish vessel that is able to move. After a risky boarding party, Muninn loses her devastatingly useful Helmsman.
El Profeta continues home undeterred and leaves behind a present of Fear…no not that Fear….the fear of Odin!!
Beowolf arrives on the opposite side of the map via iceberg, and immediately explores a hotly contested wild island.
Muninn takes a center position aiming to protect the last unexplored island in the game, and attempting to move away from the Red Odin-Berg. The Odin-Berg moves North towards the unexplored island, along with three other icebergs blocking the direct path.
As El Profeta makes her dash towards the island, Muninn cuts her off, fires, and removes two masts from El Profeta. Odin-Berg begins to return to the fray.
Polaris spends several turns making her way towards the lucrative shipwreck that was the Le Dijon, but just as she arrives within range the capture, a successful scuttle from the previous turn is activated. The French have officially exited the game.
After a missed attempt to dismast Muninn, El Profeta continues to race towards the last bits of unclaimed treasure.
As Odin-Berg heads directly towards her, Muninn circles around, staying close to the desperate and wounded Spanish vessel but elects not to attack. Muninn uses a second action to move even closer to El Profeta.
Odin-Berg seems to be maliciously targeting Muninn, but stops just short of smashing into her stern. Odin-Berg could not be any closer to possibly changing the outcome of the game.
Polaris reaches the unexplored island and takes treasure aboard, giving the Vikings an interest in ending the game.
Securing her reputation as the game’s MVP and military powerhouse, Muninn fires and sinks El Profeta, removing the Spanish from the game and bringing a close to standard play.
A Surprising victory, both offensively and economically!!!
Bird’s eye view of the carnage that was Ice WorldApril 18, 2022 at 7:41 AM #14790
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