What do you consider the biggest missing thematic element in Pirates CSG?

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This topic contains 16 replies, has 6 voices, and was last updated by  Ben 3 months, 1 week ago.

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  • #4078

    Ben
    Keymaster

    What do you consider the biggest missing thematic element in Pirates CSG?

    For me it’s wind.  Other concepts I can think of would be return fire (or at least some form of simultaneous combat), storms or bad weather in general (squalls, hurricanes, etc), boarding where you can capture an enemy ship without making them derelict first, and some kind of massive Fear-type bonus for Pirate ships going up against ships without captains or ships with all cannons rank-4 or worse.

    #4080

    Ed
    Participant

    Wow all of those ideas sound awesome, I myself love to add a touch of mundane,my shipyard games are played with a circle of our extra ships surrounding play with a shopkeep token placed in between 2 ships the two ships on either side of it are for sale when 1 ship is purchased its moved onto the board and now another ship would be up for sale.

    #4082

    Ben
    Keymaster

    I myself love to add a touch of mundane,my shipyard games are played with a circle of our extra ships surrounding play with a shopkeep token placed in between 2 ships the two ships on either side of it are for sale when 1 ship is purchased its moved onto the board and now another ship would be up for sale.

    Interesting, that reminds me of my harbor system from a while back when I had unbought ships on the deckplate docks of harbors in big games/scenarios.  Example picture

    #4083

    Jack
    Participant

    Ooh, good topic.

    Wind is a big one, but I’ll go with resources/resource management. Most of my favorite strategy games are about managing resources in some way. Gold isn’t really a resource since you can’t exchange it for anything except in the case of Carbon Charlie and some random RotF ship. It seems like it would’ve had to have been something in the game from the start, as suddenly adding a new universal game mechanic is not something Pirates CSG ever did.

    #4084

    Mechavelli
    Participant

    I like the idea of resources! It would place more importance on treasure runners and gathering, setting up supply lines and defending territory, all that good stuff. Don’t get me wrong, I love combat, but resource management would give the game a lot of replayability and strategy (on top of what it already has!)

    #4085

    Jeremiah
    Participant

    I like the idea of wind and resources as well. I’ve often enjoyed adding more depth to the game that you see in rule sets like Economy edition.

    Wind in my opinion is one of the few mechanics that could have easily been implemented to the game and would not have required large rule reworking. I imagine they could have made a small emblem with numbers on it to act as the wind gauge and still fit it in one pack. I believe the easiest way to implement wind would be to copy the rules for icebergs. Roll a die every round. The wind is then going in the direction according to the die rolls.

    Yes that would be somewhat annoying as rolling for icebergs  is but it would be a simple and straightforward way to determine wind direction. The rules for wind is another conversation. I will say that wind could be game breaking( like not being able to return to your home island due to wind) but would offer an interesting new power for the cursed to control and change a lot of strategies for both war and gold collection.

    I think resources are beyond the scope of pirates when it was in print and just too much for a game to be contained within one pack. However, the depth it adds is an excelled house rule which I often use.

     

    #4086

    Ed
    Participant

    Ive been trying to figure out how to add wind and rescoures into my games but it almost always causes slower turns I still love to use special rules to switch things up though.

    #4087

    Ben
    Keymaster

    I like the idea of resources! It would place more importance on treasure runners and gathering, setting up supply lines and defending territory, all that good stuff. Don’t get me wrong, I love combat, but resource management would give the game a lot of replayability and strategy (on top of what it already has!)

    I agree, but a lot of people have complained that the game is too much of a grab gold and win type of game.  A lot of complaints I’ve seen have been concerned with how the win conditions pretty much de-emphasize combat, which can make it boring or less interactive between players.  I think a healthy mix would be resources along with captures and/or your entire fleet having endgame value.

    Ive been trying to figure out how to add wind and rescoures into my games but it almost always causes slower turns I still love to use special rules to switch things up though.

    It probably always will slow things down.  (+@Jeremiah) There are some decent wind rules at BGG of which I’ve used at least one.

    It’s a compromise between historical accuracy (gold is scarce, wind is not; game has it backwards in a way lol) and time of play.  I like long games, but mostly just when they’re huge and I know that upfront going into it.  Unless it’s a super memorable game, I prefer to not have smaller games take over an hour.

    #4088

    Mechavelli
    Participant

    How would we place an equal amount of emphasis on combat and capturing? I’m interested in having incentives for both running and fighting. My friends love deathmatches but I like resources with contention for territory so a happy medium achieved through house rules would be excellent.

    #4089

    Jack
    Participant

    I think it can be as simple as “if you destroy the other person’s entire fleet, you win regardless of players’ gold count.”

    #4090

    Mechavelli
    Participant

    I like that idea! It stands to reason that if your entire fleet is obliterated, your HI wouldn’t be able to put up much of a resistance vs the enemy, so they’d win eventually thematically. In multiple player games, perhaps modify that rule so that it’s elimination-based. For example, player 1 destroys all of player 2’s ships. Player 2 is eliminated and can’t win anymore, but player 3 can still win by gathering the most gold or destroying player 1.

    Makes me think back to Age of Empires and how a civilization would be eradicated from the game with a simple war! I’d definitely enjoy the option of going either for gold, a hybrid approach, or go all out with gunships and try to eliminate my opponents before they can satisfy their win conditions.

    #4094

    Ben
    Keymaster

    How would we place an equal amount of emphasis on combat and capturing?

    I like using points in play count towards the victory condition of most gold/points.

    I think it can be as simple as “if you destroy the other person’s entire fleet, you win regardless of players’ gold count.”

    It makes a lot of sense, and some players I’ve played with in the past assumed or wanted there to be a “simulation” at the end of the game where the remaining fleet automatically got all the remaining gold in play.

    However, I think it would lead to a lot of power strategies where people would try to kill the other player as fast as possible.  Fleets using ships like the San Cristobal and HMS Grand Temple can be very effective against good gold fleets, to the point where the “meta” could devolve into somewhat boring deathmatch play unless you always ran a version of the UPS strategy with Captain Jack Sparrow just to survive the onslaught.

    #4095

    Mechavelli
    Participant

    That’s definitely something I thought of, but I’m not sure how to prepare for that eventuality. Killer fleets would be more important than gold runners since all a player would have to do is blast everyone and they’d win, no matter how much gold the other person accumulated (unless it triggers a win condition)

    Could you explain a bit more about the points system? I like that dismasting ships could be a viable winning strategy, but how do we balance it?

     

     

    #4097

    Ben
    Keymaster

    Could you explain a bit more about the points system? I like that dismasting ships could be a viable winning strategy, but how do we balance it?

    I think I first got the idea from here, then expanded.  I played a game (BR not republished yet) where we tested it out – one of my all-time favorite conceptual house rules.

    Adding the main concept to the Game Ideas page.

    In terms of balance, it becomes difficult to have as much gold in play as points.  For example, you’d have to include 80 points of gold to have a 2 player 40 point game with an equal distribution of points and gold.  There are many things you could do to balance things, such as half of your points in play instead of 100%, or higher gold values like 8-10 instead of just 1-7.

    My conclusions after that 2017 game:

    I must say, I like this new endgame variation, and not just because I won. It’s rather practical, and adds more realism to the game. Ships were very important, and losing a ship could be as bad or worse than losing a cargo full of resources. It really emphasizes keeping your fleet healthy, and trying to make a decisive engagement with another player so you can take ships and crew (and therefore points) from their fleet and add them to your own. In addition, it makes sinking ships less practical, and incentivizes the winners of battles to keep derelicts afloat and capture them. This is also more realistic, as ships didn’t sink from cannon fire very often in the Age of Sail. Finally, it makes combat more enticing since the gold scores aren’t the end-all be-all like they usually are. This is great because various people expected the game to be more of a combat game and wish there was more battling, and because gold running is usually more boring than the combat. I’d love to hear feedback on this idea!

    #4102

    Jack
    Participant

    I’ve done a system like this, but instead of points remaining ships that have been wounded lose points proportionally per mast lost.

    So for example, if if the Raven’s Neck lost two masts in the game, it would be considered to be worth 6 points. It’s a 12 point ship, and has 4 masts, so each mast would be “worth” 3 points.

    For ships where you can’t divide the cost up evenly by mast, round it and the last mast is worth extra. So for El Acorazado 21/5=~4. The first 4 masts lost loses you 4 points each. The last mast is worth 5.

    #4472

    Countupyourcoyne
    Participant

    Wind is a big one, but I’ll go with resources/resource management. Most of my favorite strategy games are about managing resources in some way

    This is something I’d love to have incorporated as well. I recently bought a huge lot of different resource tokens (40 different types). The first version I’m working on uses them as trade goods. In a regular game there are multiple “ports” which will purchase resources from you when you dock. The way I value the different resources is through die rolls. When you take resources to market, you roll a die corresponding with the resource (for example a lot of lumber you roll a D4 but a lot of spices you roll a D10) and that is what the port will pay for that resource. You can sell or risk visiting another port but that ports value does not change unless you bring new resources to be valued. I also am working out a way explorers can find “raw” resources on a wild island (raw resources such as lumber, livestock, stone). When this is combined with a small start game, about 20 points, you and your opponent are forced to weigh your options for victory against multiple options. I’ve also played with the idea of having a third player control a “mercantile” faction giving the players the option to raid traders but risk ports no longer allowing them to dock.

    #4474

    Ben
    Keymaster

    @countupyourcoyne: Sounds interesting, and reminds me of cannonfury’s Economy Edition and a little of Merchants and Marauders.  If you do flesh out full house rules or an entire alternative ruleset, feel free to post about it in Game Ideas.

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