UPS 5 Enhanced

UPS 5 “Enhanced”

70 (75) Point Fleet

The idea for this fleet came to me when a game for the 10th anniversary of the Facebook group was discussed.  Xerecs led the setup process, with a build total of 70 points.  I immediately thought of an idea – use the extra 30 points to “enhance” my powerful and competitive UPS 5 fleet. (which did rather well in VASSAL Tournament #1)

It’s a fun concept I actually haven’t really played around with much – take an existing uber-competitive UPS fleet build, and scale it up to non-standard build totals.  I do find 70 points to be a fun build total, so let’s see how much better UPS 5 can be with some extra points available.  Just the thought of “enhancing” any UPS fleet is scary…. O_O  XD

As a side note, all credit goes to darrin for (as far as I know) creating the UPS fleet strategy – his fleets can still be seen via links in the T2 bracket.

I quickly started realizing I could combine existing elements of prior UPS fleets and integrate them into UPS 5. However, the original idea was to start with UPS 5 and enhance it from there with the extra points, so I came back around to that.  For the next iteration, see Bonus Zeus.  XD  All game pieces found in the Master Spreadsheet.

The Fleet

Zeus + Captain Jack Sparrow (058 Common version), “Don” Pedro Gilbert, Tia Dalma, helmsman, explorer, oarsman

Le Coeur du Lion + 2 oarsmen

Jolly Mon + The Hag of Tortuga

Sol + helmsman, explorer

Banshee’s Cry + Genny Gallows (SM version)

4 oarsmen on the home island (1 or 2 being Spanish)

Hidden Cove

+All forts available to these factions (but mainly Paradis de la Mer, The Devil’s Maw, Fortaleza Dorada, Dead Man’s Point and St. Pierre)


Tia Dalma climbs aboard the Zeus to provide cancelling protection.  This will help to ensure the Zeus is protected while CJS does his dirty work, in addition to making it more likely that the Zeus would get a first strike advantage against any opponent.

This is where it gets fun.  The UPS strategy has been beaten to death by myself and darrin, so I won’t go into the extreme details.  However, with the additions there are now TWO ships teleporting coins home, and two ships waiting at home to unload the goodies for instant gratification.  XD

The Zeus might still sac out to the nearest wild island, but Hidden Cove allows for supreme flexibility and options.  The Sol doesn’t have great speed or a source of extra actions (for a build total of 80, add the Patagonia+Robinson+Mycron combo for 10 points), so she is likely to get Coved out.  In that situation, both ships should be able to teleport coins home on the first turn.

The Coeur was the unloader in UPS 5, but in this fleet the Banshee’s Cry is the primary unloader.  The BC isn’t even a regular gold runner or the star of the fleet as she usually is, she’s just a home island receiver barge!  XD   Here the free transfer of crew to and from your home island gets abused – par for the course among UPS fleets lol.  When the Zeus or Sol explores, the BC starts with an oarsman aboard. The oarsman is flipped for a coin. Then Genny Gallows boards the BC as a free action.  Then the BC redocks and unloads the coin, giving it +2 to its value!  XD

This fleet might still be susceptible to a fleet that has at least one (preferably two) hard hitting gunship, especially something with good L range cannons like HMS Grand Temple that could start messing with the Zeus (maybe via Capitaine Chevalle) without having to deal with Tia Dalma.  But given the powerful presence of the Sol and BC, those ships might allow the Zeus to just handle combat on her own.  If the Zeus went ham on an enemy gunship, it could spell trouble for any adversaries – between Sac and cancelling, the Zeus is a pretty nasty foe.  There’s also the potential for the Zeus to sac for L+S+L+S speed and chase down an enemy runner late in the game, boarding with Hoard to steal a win.  However, with two sources of the CJS ability, a +2 bonus applied to multiple coins, and the BC as gold running backup, I don’t think this fleet will have a lot of trouble winning games.

If you want, comment below your thoughts on the fleet and rate it on a 1-5 scale!

UPS 5 Enhanced - Zeus from Pirates at Ocean's Edge

Posted in Fleets and tagged .


  1. At face value I’d rate this a 5/5. UPS 5 was a powerhouse in the tournament, and it only lost to the eventual winner IIRC.
    You might run into a snag if you go up against someone who
    A) Uses events to attack your ships, Mermaids, Becalmed, etc.
    B) The fleet comes up against a mostly gunship based fleet, something built around the HMS Grand Temple or San Cristobal.

    I’m wondering if a single ship fleet built around one of the other ten mast ships would be any good against this one.

    • @Xerecs: Indeed, events always pose an issue. (which is of course why I like to ban them)
      That would be an interesting counter – a fully loaded 10 master could pose problems if they used it with their own Hidden Cove and Sac. However, Tia Dalma would help a bit against that contingency, and having two quick-acting “CJS ships” would increase the chances of having one survive long enough to teleport home an entire island of coins.
      Now I’m thinking of other potential UPS combinations, like putting CJS on the OE Deliverance or Roanoke in a 40 point game….

      Thanks for commenting!

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