International Tabletop Day
3 Players, 80 Points in Bellevue, Washington
June 4th, 2022
Dan, Kyle and I met up at Mox Boarding House Bellevue to play a 3 player game! Thanks to my friend Captain Randy I had been alerted earlier in the day that it was International Tabletop Day, so it was fitting that we were already planning to meet up to play!
I went first with a “Windcatcher Triple Threat” fleet:
HMS Mirage + RotF Hermione Gold, canceller Bratley, First Mate Ismail
Mystic + Tia Dalma, captain, helmsman, oarsman
Ghost Walker + Jonathan Haraden, Gus Schultz, helmsman, oarsman, exploding shot
Dan (Witch) went second with a mostly Spanish American fleet consisting of the Neptuno, Providence, President (proxied with a square rigged 4 master) and Mermaid.
Kyle went third with a French fleet, sailing out the Superbe, Dauphin Royal, Possession, Pique and Coeur du Lion.
We used 4 wild islands with 4 coins on each of them, and all terrain ended up touching islands or other terrain. Dan provided the tokens courtesy of Tilorfire27 (affiliate link).
This was my first time using HMS Mirage, a cool looking ship that has solid all-around stats. I decided to go all windcatchers, with the Mystic providing some HI raiding capability and additional cargo, while the Ghost Walker would be the only pure gunship and capable of both powerful offense (2L exploding shot with reroll) and defense via cancelling and Eternal. I like the way their looks contrast against each other!
Dan’s fleet was also mixed; the 4 master on the right is the President proxy.
I though Kyle’s fleet looked the most intimidating out of the three, with a trio of good French gunships all at 4 masts or larger.
I knew I wanted to keep my cancelling cluster together in order to have any chance against the French 5’s nearby. It was nice to see a setup reminiscent of a tropical island chain instead of the typical square or circle setup that often becomes the default when placing islands.
The Mirage reached an island but would have to wait to take any coins. I purposely put the “public” canceller (the Ghost Walker) away from the French gunships in order to try and draw them in a bit so I could cancel their crew with the face down cancellers on the other windcatchers.
Dan’s Providence has round earthed all the way to the east, but poor d6 luck with Commodore Stern’s EA prevents him from striking the French before they get gold. The Mermaid is docked at the southwestern island.
With 3 coins aboard, the Mirage charges the Superbe and shoots a mast off. I knew I wouldn’t be able to avoid conflict on the journey home so I decided to instigate it, with the Mystic right beside the Mirage. I purposely kept the Ghost Walker away to try and appear less threatening, hoping the Superbe would turn to port and pull up broadside to the Mirage, upon which I would cancel her captain and get away soon afterwards.
It worked until it didn’t! I was successful in getting the French to play into my plans, but I didn’t account for BOTH French 5’s having Sac Captains! (Arazure and Arathiel) This was especially surprising given that CC Gaston de St. Croix was on the Superbe, with the ship already having him as an action generator. The Superbe had her source of Captain cancelled by Bratley, but Kyle was able to sac a crew to get an extra action and shoot anyway, hitting the Mirage twice. The Dauphin sacced as well and dismasted the Mystic despite Tia Dalma cancelling her captain! In the case of the Superbe, this was a rare case where it was well worth it to bring multiple action generators on a single ship despite the 2-action limit, since Gaston’s SAT was not going to get the Superbe a single shot in against the Mirage (since Kyle chose to move the ship before I revealed Bratley, and the Superbe would have to move twice).
The Mirage sailed for home, hitting the Superbe on her way by. Then it was time for the Ghost Walker to shine, hitting 3/4 (successfully using Haraden’s Reroll) and setting the Superbe aflame! The Mystic revealed an oarsman to row towards home at S+S.
Dan got in on the action next! The President came flying in from the south, lighting up the Dauphin Royal! Both of his 4 masters had action generators onboard, with Commodore Stern and Montana Mays eager for some cannonades. However, the Dauphin did sac to move twice on Kyle’s turn, hitting 2/2 on the President without the fire spreading. The rest of the French fleet is near their HI.
Stern and his crew hear the battle from afar, but their view is mostly blocked by two fog banks:
Knowing I had Gus Schultz’s Eternal in my back pocket, I felt comfortable sending the Ghost Walker out for more blood, this time setting the President on fire. The Mirage and Mystic would take time to repair, but I was ready to play the long game.
The President escaped into a fog bank, letting the Possession take over in the fight against the Ghost Walker. The Possession stayed out of cancelling range to knock a mast off the GW, but the GW retaliated by setting up off the Possession’s stern (to minimize how much return fire I would face) and setting yet another ship on fire with exploding shot.
Dan and Kyle agreed to team up and sink the Ghost Walker, with the President emerging from the fog to knock a mast off. The Possession finished off the GW with some nice shooting. However, this was the day they almost caught Jonathan Haraden! But Gus Schultz was there to save the GW, warping her home to join the other windcatchers undergoing extensive repairs. He thus acquired the nickname “Ghost Gus” – like a shadow in the night, always there.
Despite their recent agreement Kyle couldn’t help but shoot at Dan’s President with the Dauphin as the latter returned home, dismasting the American. With that we were left to survey the carnage, as the battlefield was strewn with debris across a somewhat wide area. Alas, with the Possession burning wildly and the Mirage already headed out to stop the French from getting more gold, it was not over!
The Pique explores but is quickly slammed by the Mirage, who exchanges successful shots with the Possession and rams the Pique derelict. First Mate Ismail is lost in the boarding party, but I still had HGold and Bratley aboard.
The Possession’s fire finally spread and overcame her crew. The Mirage towed the Pique, who explored the Mirage to transfer two coins. My other windcatchers sailed out fully repaired. Seeing the endgame, I was prepared to build a fort to extend the game since Dan looked to be in the lead from getting a good amount of +2 gold bonuses via LE Dominic Freda. The Dauphin Royal is almost finished repairing, possibly signifying another battle on the horizon.
Dan was coming home with more gold, including the last 2 from the southwestern island that would end the game since the Mirage had already docked hers home. Figuring Dan was winning I built Fort Brompton on the center island, hoping to use the 3 windcatchers to knock the French off balance and for the Mystic to steadily steal some gold that I might be able to keep at the fort in the short term.
Dan regroups, repairs, and gets gold bonuses. Kyle tows the Pique with the Coeur, but I have my eyes on both ships – partly as a numbers game if I could capture them, and also as a slight distraction away from the fort that I don’t want the Dauphin messing with. The Mystic goes from one fog bank to another, trying to get into optimal position for HI raiding. The Dauphin has lost a bunch of crew but still has bite from pure firepower.
Making a play at the French sloops could also give me distractions and ramming options in the potential fight against my opponents. However, Dan was trying to end the game as fast as possible….
The cat and mouse game in the fog bank continued, allowing the Ghost Walker to stop the Coeur from getting the Pique home.
I did capture both ships…
… but then we did a count! It was revealed that even if I successfully stole ALL of Kyle’s gold, I still wouldn’t have enough to beat Dan. So I would have to steal some of Dan’s to win, which seemed unlikely between the Dauphin at full strength, the fort getting attacked by both players or at least Dan’s fully repaired fleet of 4 ships, and getting the Mystic to survive all these HI raids after many many turns of it. So I agreed that we should call it there.
- Dan: 30 gold
- Ben: 14
- Kyle: 11
Congratulations to Dan on a nice win! This was a fun game that gave us a lot of what we wanted: combat, lots of abilities used (all named crew from all fleets featuring prominently), cool plays made and a solid ending. There was plenty of fun bargaining throughout. All in good fun! Thanks for reading and let us know if you want to play near Seattle!
One of these days I might have to take a trip up there for a week or weekend for a Pirates marathon. Either that or we figure out how to get some people to meet in LA.
Anywho, looks like a fun game! Lots of action and some nice shots too. I really need to get HMS Mirage, but I think she’s the hardest or next hardest SS SE to get, right up there with the Lib.
Having you in the PNW would be awesome! Let me know if you (and brothers) make any plans so I can try to rally all the pirates I know of here haha. LA is still the place where I’ve met up with the most people at once, with your clan being the main reason heh.
It was definitely a good game and felt closer at the end than Dan’s score shows. Agreed on the Mirage, she was the last of the SS SE’s for me.