Factional strengths by ship type

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  • This topic has 3 replies, 3 voices, and was last updated 1 year ago by Ben.
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  • #9889
    Ben
    Keymaster

    Even when my collection was much smaller I noticed certain disparities among the factions when it came to ship types and sizes.  For example, England has a TON of great 5 and 4 masted ships.  America has a superb array of 3 and 4 masted schooners to choose from.  Both to the point where I sometimes have a hard time deciding which ship to use!

    Since 5 masters are my favorite ship type, it’s easy for me to think about those.  England is arguably king, but the French and Pirates both have a high quantity of great options, usually in the 13-17 point range.  They might not have an Endeavour or Acorazado, but they make up for it with quantity and budget options.  The Spanish arguably did get slightly “shafted” a little on 5 masters in a weird way, since they have their fair share of strange or subpar options.  Of course, the Acorazado and San Cristobal at the top can rival any other pair from any other faction.  In addition, their many great 4 masters make up for it.  The Americans are incredibly strong with 5’s as well.

    Master Spreadsheet for reference

    For small gold runners of 1-2 masts, the Pirates and French are usually the best.

    This is something that ideally I’d make into an alternate Rankings idea, such as Top 10 American Schooners.

    What other factional strengths by ship type have you noticed?  (outside of obvious ones such as Viking longships)

    #9890
    Daddy Garand
    Participant

    I always found the Spanish to have a plethora of good 3 & 4 masted ships, lots of great support gunships and potential hybrids.

    #9900
    Mitch
    Participant

    I actually need to look more into this. I have a better understanding of things from expansion to expansion with a few exceptions of ships (Acorazado) that have always stood out. Though I’ve mixed and matched over the years, when I used to play more than I do now I tried to work with the newest release simply because it was in fact new, again with a few exceptions. It wasn’t until later than I mixed sets and began looking at what worked best overall. I used to play some large fleet action games with friends where we would use duplicate ships as others in a “class” based on the namesake. I have notes somewhere I made on which ships worked best and to what end in my opinion.

    In any case, I would agree with the analysis of 5-mast vessels. I have fond memories of some of the British and pirate heavy hitters, but the Spanish and frankly most other nations have at least one or two that are very enjoyable to play in their own right. For me the overall quality of ship type is dependent on how big a game is being played. If it’s a smaller game, most nations can bring something competitive to the table, if it’s a larger action, the strength of some nations for 5-mast vessels does drop off a bit to the point where it does begin to matter.

    As for 2-3 mast vessels, I need to look into this some more as well. I have some I enjoy a lot for pirates, Britain and Spain, but it’s an area I’ve not given a ton of thought to as a group overall.

    #9902
    Ben
    Keymaster

    I used to play some large fleet action games with friends where we would use duplicate ships as others in a “class” based on the namesake.

    That makes sense!  I would have had a large “Mayfair” and “Birkenhead” class.  XD

    For me the overall quality of ship type is dependent on how big a game is being played. If it’s a smaller game, most nations can bring something competitive to the table, if it’s a larger action, the strength of some nations for 5-mast vessels does drop off a bit to the point where it does begin to matter.

    Great point!

    As for 2-3 mast vessels, I need to look into this some more as well. I have some I enjoy a lot for pirates, Britain and Spain, but it’s an area I’ve not given a ton of thought to as a group overall.

    It’s part of the reason I ran out of things to discuss in my post.  I think there’s considerable balance with 2 masters for the most part, though the Pirates and French are probably still the best.

    I feel like most of the factions have a lot of great 3 masters, which is one of my favorite ship sizes due to the competition, point levels, and hybrids.  From the Fleet Review I did, I remember the Americans having a weird advantage in some niche 3 master class types – arguably the best hoist (Frontier), longship (Kettering), AND submarine (Mercury).  However, they don’t have some of the awesome square-rigged 3 masters that the Big 4 factions have, although their excellent and quick 3 masted schooners make up for it somewhat.

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