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SeaFall» Forums » Rules

Subject: Question about transferring goods between ships/warehouses rss

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Becq Starforged
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Quote:
Before and/or after you sail, if both your ships are together at any
region (that is, at land), you may rearrange goods between their holds.
You may also load or unload goods from your ships’ holds into or out
of warehouses you control in that region.

Does the phrase "before and/or after you sail" mean "at the beginning and end of the sail action", or does it mean "before and after a given ship moves"? For example, let's say I have two ships at two nearby islands, and each has a good in its hold. Can I move Ship A to Ship B's location, transfer a good to Ship B (or vice versa), and then move Ship B elsewhere?

As a follow-up (depending on the first answer), do I understand the rule correctly that you can't "drop off" goods in the middle of a move? For example, I almost made it back to my harbor last turn, but ended my move in the coastal waters. This turn, I sail one space to my harbor, and unload some goods. Can the ship head back out to sea with its remaining moves?

Thanks in advance!
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Keith Pishnery
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Before and after suggests you can only transfer your goods before starting a sail action and after ending a sail action, which seems to be confirmed by the Merchants Guild article:

Quote:
Before a ship starts its sail action or after it ends its sail action, you are allowed to rearrange what is in its hold provided the ship is at land (not out in the open sea). For example, you could sail back to your home harbor and unload your goods to your warehouse. Or you could move goods between your ships if they are at the same island. One trick is to buy goods on two different islands, then move your first ship to your second ship, transfer the good to the second ship, and then sail the second ship home with both goods. This chaining of sail actions allows a good to go twice as far in one turn than keeping them on their original ships.


So Yes on Q1 and No on Q2, it seems.
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Becq Starforged
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Good catch; that's not the answer I expected (on Q1), but I'll accept the designer note example as official!
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Ben Martell
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I think the answer to the latter question does need clarification.

What is very clear is that you cannot use a different action between sailing your two ships - so buying or selling goods can only happen before or after doing the sail actions for both ships (I queried this during the original discussion of Update 4 - I don't think the rule book is abundantly clear that actions must be consecutive rather than concurrent but people have pointed out aspects of the rulebook that support that view - in particular that 'claiming a milestone can end your turn after one action').

However, I do wonder if depositing goods in your warehouse is more akin to transferring them to the hold of another ship, and therefore can be done in the middle of the sail action. It doesn't take an action to do it, and it seems like the general rule might be that anything that doesn't require an action could be done at any time during a turn (provided the conditions for doing that thing are met eg being present at your warehouse).

In Pandemic: Legacy (no spoilers, components available at start of game only), there were upgrades that expressly allowed things to be done without spending an action. That meant you could do them at any time including out of turn provided that the conditions for doing the thing were met.

It seems logical to me that the same would be true here in the absence of any rules that expressly prohibit it, although I'd expect only during your own turn given it's not a co-op(you wouldn't want to be able to have people evade a raid in some way out of turn by having the ability).
 
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Stephen Rochelle
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benmartell wrote:
However, I do wonder if depositing goods in your warehouse is more akin to transferring them to the hold of another ship, and therefore can be done in the middle of the sail action.
But the ship-to-ship version is already clear that it's not in the middle of a single ship's move. You can shift after one ship moves but before the other does, per the clarification in the earlier design article, but "before and/or after" means something very different than "at any point while", and that level of reclarification shouldn't be needed.
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Ben Martell
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lomn wrote:
benmartell wrote:
However, I do wonder if depositing goods in your warehouse is more akin to transferring them to the hold of another ship, and therefore can be done in the middle of the sail action.
But the ship-to-ship version is already clear that it's not in the middle of a single ship's move. You can shift after one ship moves but before the other does, per the clarification in the earlier design article, but "before and/or after" means something very different than "at any point while", and that level of reclarification shouldn't be needed.


Why not? It's an example. It does not say what you cannot do by omission, it gives one example of what you can do.

As someone who drafts contracts for a living, trust me when I say that there is a big difference between what 'should' be needed and what is needed. You only need look at the long discussion around raiding someone's field five times in a year to see that you need to run different scenarios and get the designers to comment to fully understand their intent.
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Becq Starforged
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I would say that the language in Keith's quote, "Before a ship starts its sail action or after it ends its sail action", is fairly unambiguous.

By the way, while re-reading the designers note that Keith linked, the following jumped out and mugged me:
Quote:
•You have to have room in your ship’s hold to put the goods. Each ship can carry goods and items equal to its hold. What item can you carry you ask? You’ll see…

Goods ... and items? Damn you, Rob.

Ok, so any conjectures on what items there might be? I'll throw out one possibility: "colonists".
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Edward Haag
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The rulebook is quite clear on this point.

Rulebook, page 9 wrote:
Before and/or after you sail, if both your ships are together at any region (that is, at land), you may rearrange goods between their holds. You may also load or unload goods from your ships’ holds into or out of warehouses you control in that region.


When you take the sail action, each ship moves up to its own sail value, in either order. (Or together, if they're starting on the same space, in the example on the same page.)

Before or after each ship sails, as part of its sail action, it can transfer goods into or out of its hold, either to or from a warehouse or another ship on the same space.

That means that, as part of a single sail action, one ship can sail to the other, finish its own sail, transfer its goods to the other, and then the other ship takes its sail action with the goods.

Ships may not sail a space, transfer, and then sail the rest of the move. If that were the case, the rulebook wouldn't bother specifying "before and/or after." It would just state that at any point during the sail action you can transfer goods.
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Stephen Rochelle
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No, the rules text is not "an example" with room for omission.
Quote:
Before and/or after you sail ... you may load or unload goods (pursuant to a bunch of other conditions not pertinent here)

Broken down, this means:

Before you sail, you may load or unload goods
After you sail, you may load or unload goods
Because of "and/or", you may do both.
Because of Rob's clarification in the design note, you can load or unload when one ship is in the "before" state and the other is in the "after" state.

However, "before" and "after" are very clear words, and neither means "between" or "during" or "in the midst of". Further, any of those phrasings would have been simpler to write than the "and/or" that was specifically chosen to resolve a particular case that wouldn't come up if the rule were instead "At any point while sailing, you may load or unload goods". But the rules don't say that. The language deliberately avoids that. And therefore you can't do that.

I mean, even contracts adhere to this basic nature of "not all negatives must be accounted for". I don't have to tell a contractor that a cost-plus contract doesn't include a $10 surcharge for each red shirt worn at the monthly meeting. Game rules don't have to enumerate all the things that cannot be done.
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Ben Martell
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Actually, you should have in your contract a term that says something like 'the contract sets out all things that may be charged for', or you might find that the contractor can, in fact, charge for hidden costs that aren't enumerated. "Cost-plus" often does that by definition.

But, point taken, the example was clear within the first fourteen words. My reading fail. I don't think 'before and/or after' in the rule book was helpful to an example that (based on the rules) people probably would have said was clearly excluded by the rule, so the rule is a little unhelpful and it's probably worth it being another thing clarified in future versions. But the example is much clearer with "Before a ship starts its sail action or after it ends its sail action".

It doesn't change the fact that where ambiguity exists, if we don't fill it with clarity then people will play the rule different ways.
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Keith Pishnery
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Well, we are picking these rules apart piece by piece, aren't we?

This one is quite clear from the rules, and is reinforced by the advice Rob gives about how to use it.

The biggest thing here is that you have to consider that Sail is one of 2 unique actions you can hire a guild to do. The rules explicitly state you cannot do the same action twice. Combining that with before/after language gives us the complete answer.
 
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Ben Martell
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It reminds me of 'Resilient Population' event card in Pandemic which can be played during the resolution of an epidemic. It seems this may be the only example (that we know of) in Seafall of something that can be done mid-action (but only at one specific point mid-action).
 
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