A gaming geek blog inspired by the grandiose science fiction imagery from games, comics, books, and popular culture.
Sunday, February 15, 2015
My first sailing ship command
A couple of weeks ago at Dragon's Lair, Grant ran a sailing ship combat game. The minis were from Close Action, but he used a tournament version of Bloody Broadsides. It was my first time playing a sailing ship combat game; it's a lot different when you're so dependent on the wind.
There were nine players, each commanding a single sailing ship. I took the French vessel Pluton, a 74-gun vessel upgraded to 80 for this scenario, as our squadron sailed to meet the English.
As we began play, I quickly found out how important maneuver (and the direction of the wind) can be. The game quickly turned into a chaotic melee, as ships jockeyed for position and that oh-so-satisfying (and damaging) stern rake. In the end, the English fleet drove off the French, but ships on b both sides struck their colors.
Grant was trying out some streamlined rules he wants to use in a Battle of Trafalgar game in a few weeks. One thing I liked was no rolling to see if your cannon hit; you do a set amount of damage based on range. While some players like to roll for hits, it really slows down a large multiplayer game like this one with nine ships. Since the Trafalgar game will involve 23 ships, I think not rolling for hits is a fair compromise.