High Scoring Game – VASSAL action of May 4th, 2018

High Scoring Game – VASSAL action of May 4th, 2018

Another game was played between A7XfanBen and JohnLock.

I went first with The Jades can use Calypso too! JohnLock followed with a Pirate fleet comprising some of the best ships in the game, including the Banshee’s Cry and Hai Peng.

Once again we had 10 wild islands with 3 coins apiece, and flat earth rules.

The Pirates took off for 4 different islands, but the Virtuous Wind had already scoured one of them. I purposely went for islands farther from home, knowing I could probably get close gold later. Calypso got into action early, allowing the Tiger’s Breath to explore an island in the south that would have taken longer to get to.

High Scoring Game - VASSAL action of May 4th, 2018

Here I wanted to try raiding the Pirate home island, but Calypso and Cheng couldn’t come up with a whirlpool in the north. The Virtuous Wind instead headed northeast.

High Scoring Game - VASSAL action of May 4th, 2018

Seeing both Pirate gunships (Hai Peng and Carrion Crow carried captains) away from the Pirate HI, I decided it was time for the VW’s raid. Throughout this game, both of us had dismal luck with whirlpool travel, and Protection from Davy Jones wasn’t found until the end.

Having found the Jade UT earlier, I was taking a big risk going to the Pirate HI instead of just going home with the 7 the VW had. Risking both the UT and the 7, the VW only robbed a 1 coin.

High Scoring Game - VASSAL action of May 4th, 2018

Though the Pirate brigade did turn for their robbed home island afterwards, I decided to “ride out and meet them”.  The Hai Peng had 3 coins aboard, and I figured the VW could win the fight. The Hades’ Flame and Carrion Crow have warped to the southeast, losing masts.

The Hai Peng rammed the VW instead of docking at the home island, taking off a mast but being dismasted in return by the Wind. This was my golden opportunity to cash in and tow the HP home for a bunch of gold.

Using a little-known rule, from Page 10 of the Reference Diagrams I confirmed that I could capture and tow the Hai Peng with the Virtuous Wind since the HP was derelict and her bow was already in contact with the VW. The VW moved S to enter a new whirlpool Calypso had created (Clutch Calypso! XD), warping back to the Jade HI in a jiffy!

Reference Diagrams rule

Both fleets maxed out their gold scores at the end, specifically the Jades with you guessed it, Jade. XD The VW used the UT to double her old 7 coin into 14 gold after the Tiger’s Paw took the stolen 1. The TP then gave the 1 back to let the VW double that coin too. Good thing, since unfortunately I would need it….

In very improbable fashion, the scores end up tied at 58-58!!!!

The Jades won on both tiebreakers: they led the Pirates in points in play (my favorite tiebreaker, and something that should have been a standard rule) 55-21, and led in masts standing 7-5.

end of the game

I’m very happy with how my new fleet performed in its first game, essentially winning against a fleet using some of the best Pirate ships out there. We both made some mistakes; the Hai Peng ramming the Virtuous Wind instead of docking home her gold led to the Jades capturing the infamous junk, while I should have been more conservative actually, since going for the HI raid only resulted in 1 more gold. If the VW had been successful in doubling both the 7 and the 4 from the island northeast of the Jade HI (Carrion Crow eventually got the 4 for the Pirates), the Jade profit would have been 22 instead of 15. However, then I probably wouldn’t have captured the HP, who netted 12 gold from her 3 coins. So many moments, decisions, and strategic moves that matter in the end – one of the reasons I love Pirates so much!

Overall though, a very fun, close, and strategic game that came down to the… rope? XD See you next time!!

Fleet Showcase: The Jades can use Calypso too!

Fleet Showcase: The Jades can use Calypso too!

Here’s another Fleet Showcase video from youtube!

Got this idea during the 12th episode of the podcast.

Pirates CSG Calypso

Get Calypso for your own fleets!

The perfectly costed Tiger’s Paw allows the use of Pirate crew, providing a niche use for one of the game’s lesser ships. Calypso comes aboard, with Ms. Cheng providing a “free” reroll for the ability to maximize the number of whirlpools put in play. Ms. Cheng would be linked to the captain of the Virtuous Wind, since it does not say that the crew have to be on the same ship. The TP will sit at home and create as many lanes as possible to provide opportunities for the other ships. The Turtle Ship keyword should provide insurance against ramming and boarding, making it a relatively safe place for Calypso.

I originally had the East Wind with a captain and oarsman as the main gunship, but then I didn’t have enough points to add the Sea Crane AND the Tiger’s Breath. Well, at that point, why not substitute for the best Jade Rebel ship in the game, the Virtuous Wind? She has a hybrid complement of crew, with 3 spaces left open for treasure. She will be tasked with a big workload – protect Calypso and the Tiger’s Breath, grab gold from islands (including enemy home islands), and fight the best enemy warship if necessary. What I like about the whirlpool exploration strategy is that you don’t need as much speed: since the whirlpools are placed within L of wild islands, you don’t need much speed from there (just S can work depending on the length of the ship’s hull measured out from the whirlpool) to reach the wild island. Hence the explorers instead of helmsmen (my usual preference) on the gold runners. By placing a whirlpool L away from a wild island and as close as possible to an enemy HI, it could be very easy to allow the Virtuous Wind to steal gold. However, as soon as Calypso is revealed, your opponent will know this.

The Tiger’s Breath completes the unintentional “tiger” theme of this fleet, but more importantly gives a true gold runner. The Tiger’s Breath will go into a whirlpool and out of the other on one turn, and then move to dock and explore an island on the next turn. The oarsman was transferred to the TB so she can get home even with bad whirl rolls on the way there and on the way back.

UT’s are pretty basic – I’m counting on the speedy whirlpool travel to allow me to find Jade, and Marksman’s Map could determine where future whirlpools are placed (and help me to know if I should bother raiding an enemy HI). The Protection will make the journeys less treacherous, since a couple bad rolls could really mess with the crew setups and even dismast the Tiger’s Breath.

One weakness would be fellow HI raiders – they can raid easily with all the whirlpools near the Tiger’s Paw, and could use the same whirlpools to make fast getaways.

I definitely want to test this fleet out at some point, since I think it has the potential to get some gold quickly. I was surprised by how effective the concept worked in this game.

Please comment and vote!!!! (on a scale of 1-5 with 5 being the best)

Question of the Day: Have you tried using Calypso in a small game? (less than 60 points for example)

-Also let me know if you’d like to see more Fleet Showcase videos!  I could also review fleets that aren’t my own!

The fleet: http://m.miniaturetrading.com/im/showDeck/deck_id/830152/grouping/0/extended_format/true

South China Seas on eBay: https://goo.gl/9RjChU
Calypso: https://goo.gl/BS9QS9
– I HIGHLY recommend getting Calypso – she’s super unique and a ton of fun to use.
Tiger’s Paw: https://goo.gl/TywyQn

Battle Report mentioned: https://pirateswithben.com/the-jades-can-use-calypso-too-a-good-game-may-4th-2018/
Another example of using Calypso in a small game: https://pirateswithben.com/testing-a-gimmick-fleet-june-27th-2017/

Fleet Showcase: The Jades can use Calypso too!

Fleet on Miniature Trading

The Jades can use Calypso too! A good game – May 4th, 2018

Another game was played between A7XfanBen and JohnLock

I went first with The Jades can use Calypso too! JohnLock followed with a Pirate fleet comprising some of the best ships in the game, including the Banshee’s Cry and Hai Peng. 

Once again we had 10 wild islands with 3 coins apiece, and flat earth rules. 

The Pirates took off for 4 different islands, but the Virtuous Wind had already scoured one of them. I purposely went for islands farther from home, knowing I could probably get close gold later. Calypso got into action early, allowing the Tiger’s Breath to explore an island in the south that would have taken longer to get to. 

Here I wanted to try raiding the Pirate home island, but Calypso and Cheng couldn’t come up with a whirlpool in the north. The Virtuous Wind instead headed northeast. 

Seeing both Pirate gunships (Hai Peng and Carrion Crow carried captains) away from the Pirate HI, I decided it was time for the VW’s raid. Throughout this game, both of us had dismal luck with whirlpool travel, and Protection from Davy Jones wasn’t found until the end. 

Having found the Jade UT earlier, I was taking a big risk going to the Pirate HI instead of just going home with the 7 the VW had. Risking both the UT and the 7, the VW only robbed a 1 coin. 

Though the Pirate brigade did turn for their robbed home island afterwards, I decided to “ride out and meet them”. 

Smile

 The Hai Peng had 3 coins aboard, and I figured the VW could win the fight. The Hades’ Flame and Carrion Crow have warped to the southeast, losing masts. 

The Hai Peng rammed the VW instead of docking at the home island, taking off a mast but being dismasted in return by the Wind. This was my golden opportunity to cash in and tow the HP home for a bunch of gold. 

Using a little-known rule, from Page 10 of the Reference Diagrams I confirmed that I could capture and tow the Hai Peng with the Virtuous Wind since the HP was derelict and her bow was already in contact with the VW. The VW moved S to enter a new whirlpool Calypso had created (Clutch Calypso! XD), warping back to the Jade HI in a jiffy! 

Both fleets maxed out their gold scores at the end, specifically the Jades with you guessed it, Jade. XD The VW used the UT to double her old 7 coin into 14 gold after the Tiger’s Paw took the stolen 1. The TP then gave the 1 back to let the VW double that coin too. Good thing, since unfortunately I would need it…. 

In very improbable fashion, the scores end up tied at 58-58!!!! 

The Jades won on both tiebreakers: they led the Pirates in points in play (my favorite tiebreaker, and something that should have been a standard rule) 55-21, and led in masts standing 7-5. 

I’m very happy with how my new fleet performed in its first game, essentially winning against a fleet using some of the best Pirate ships out there. We both made some mistakes; the Hai Peng ramming the Virtuous Wind instead of docking home her gold led to the Jades capturing the infamous junk, while I should have been more conservative actually, since going for the HI raid only resulted in 1 more gold. If the VW had been successful in doubling both the 7 and the 4 from the island northeast of the Jade HI (Carrion Crow eventually got the 4 for the Pirates), the Jade profit would have been 22 instead of 15. However, then I probably wouldn’t have captured the HP, who netted 12 gold from her 3 coins. So many moments, decisions, and strategic moves that matter in the end – one of the reasons I love Pirates so much! 

Overall though, a very fun, close, and strategic game that came down to the… rope? XD See you next time!!

Testing a gimmick fleet – June 27th, 2017

Played another game on VASSAL with repkosai! You can check out the video if you’d like.

I went first with a recent fleet of mine. To fill out the last 5 points I added the Paradox with an explorer.

Repkosai followed with a Spanish fleet:
El Acorazado + captain
Morning Star + Capitan Alarico Castro, helmsman
El Leon + captain

The setup featured 6 wild islands with 3 coins apiece, and flat earth rules.

Calypso was successful on the first turn, and the Paradox used a trade current to reach the first whirlpool and pop out of the second near the southwestern wild island. The Akua Lapu didn’t want to risk a lot of masts or crew via whirlpools, and needed to wait in order to use Grim’s ability, so she wasn’t in a hurry to do anything for the first part of the game. I must admit that the 5 extra points helped, since it allowed me to have a dedicated gold runner. The Paradox is very slow without a helmsman, but between trade currents and the whirlpools being placed close to wild islands, she wouldn’t need a lot of speed to move all over the map.
Testing a gimmick fleet

The Spanish set out, and the Paradox has an eventful trip already. She found an abandoned helmsman in the south, but also Barrel o’ Monkeys and a 6 coin. The monkeys took the 6 for themselves, which left the Paradox with no gold. Thus, she used another of Calypso’s whirlpools to emerge near another wild island, losing a mast in the process.

Risking negative UT’s, the bored Akua Lapu looks to explore in the northeast. The Paradox gets 3 coins from an island but one will be left behind due to the greedy monkeys.

Here, the Morning Star has emptied an island for the Spanish, while their gunships head northwest towards the Pirates. The Paradox unloads, while the Akua Lapu loads up 3 coins.

The AL gets the SAT from Calico Cat, allowing the AL to dock home for a Pirate windfall! You can see the strange situation around the Pirate HI, with two sargasso seas, a bunch of whirlpools, and a few trade currents, all near a corner of the map.

Much excitement! After some rules issues, the Paradox is forced south from using some faulty Bad Maps! However, the Spanish weren’t completely fortunate: Calypso finally rolled to place another whirlpool, and luckily for me Calico Cat also rolled successfully. The Akua Lapu took off for the Spanish home island!

Grim the Savage led a raiding party, and the Pirates took all of the Spanish loot!! The gimmick was complete, though the AL still had to make it home in one piece and unload the gold. Speaking of unloading gold, the Paradox did just that, further increasing the Spanish treasure deficit. At this point everything in my fleet was working perfectly, as even the slow Paradox was turned into an awesome gold runner between the whirlpools and her explorer.

Calypso placed another whirlpool, allowing the AL to scoot around the fog bank and be whisked back to friendly waters. The Morning Star unloaded another island worth of gold, and the Leon was approaching the Pirate home island and managed to hit the AL.

Another windfall! The Akua Lapu docks home the stolen gold, and the game was turning into a blowout. I decided I had enough whirlpools and trade currents to execute any late-game strategies and maneuvers I might need, so the Coeur and Banshee’s Cry got to do some sight-seeing.

However, the Morning Star would have none of it! She rammed the Coeur out of action and stole the 6 that the monkeys had originally stolen from the Paradox. The Leon arrived through a whirlpool, but the attack naturally triggered a Pirate response, with the Paradox and Akua Lapu arriving shortly thereafter. In hindsight, the AL could have just raided the unprotected Spanish home island a second time, but instead there was some fun combat.

Disaster for the Spanish! The Leon sank the Coeur, but the Morning Star boarded the Paradox (when she had 3 masts remaining after the AL shot off 2 of them) and lost the 6 coin! The Paradox took full advantage, speeding away through the whirlpool. The AL got another SAT from Cat and blasted two masts off the MS before turning east in anticipation of another HI raid!

The MS and Leon exchange crew so the Leon has Castro, captain, and helmsman. The Paradox docks home the 6 coin she originally found on the second turn, while the Banshee’s Cry prepared to sacrifice herself to defend the AL.

Race for the Spanish home island! The Leon gets an SAT from Castro, but now the Paradox is ready to assist the AL too.

The AL raided the Spanish home island of the last two coins in the game, but Castro got an SAT to allow the Leon to shoot twice. Furthering Spanish woes, both shots missed, which allowed the AL to escape via whirlpool after yet another SAT from Cat. The Pirates had escaped, and more gold was unloaded to end the game!

In a huge blowout, the Pirates defeat the Spanish 55-0! This is one of the only games I’ve ever played where a fleet gets every single coin in the treasure distribution. No gold was sunk, and the Pirates collected and stole the rest for a massive victory. This game made me want to use Calypso more, and it’s also one of the best gimmick games/fleets I’ve seen.

We both learned a lot from this game: I learned how effective Calypso can be by not always needing helmsmen on slower gold runners, as the Paradox was just as valuable a ship as the Akua Lapu. Repkosai learned the opposite – speed wins games, as the Acorazado was way too slow to have any impact on the game. We also learned some rules situations; though I was surprised by the answers and we played them wrong, it wouldn’t have affected the final outcome since the Pirates were so dominant in this game. Thanks for reading! More adventures await!