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Subject: The new 80 gun SOL rss

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Einar J Wetaas
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Lets take a look on the new 80 guns SOL that has been released.
The ship is beautiful made and it will be fun to try this one in the game.

We all have wanted something to fill the gap between 1st rates and 3rd rates. And now Ares have given us something that come close to this. I know I wanted to see 2nd rates warships because they were the more common than 1st rates.
Giving us this 80 gun ship they are closing in on the second rates. Since 3rd rate is rated in the English rating system as a ship with 64-80 guns we are now on tip of the scale for a 3rd rate.
To be rated as a second rate you need to pass 90 guns.

On paper it may not seem like a big deal it is only 6 guns more if you compare it with the other 3rd rate SOL with 74 guns. But if you look closer you will see there are major differences , which I will come back to later in this review.

I have chosen to compare this new ship with one of the most popular 74 gun SOL from the French.
I will compare the 80 gun Neptune against the 74 gun Commerce de Bordeux.

Is it better and is it worth the extra cost in points.

Now lets us look at historical facts:
Neptune was a 80 ton SOL It was armed with:
30 x 36 pounders
32 x 24 pounders
18 x 12 pounders
6 x 36 pounder howitzers

The Commerce de Bordeux was a 74 gun SOL armed with:
30 x 36 pounders
32 x 24 pounders
18 x 12 pounders
4 x 36 Pounders Carronades.

The ships was almost identical in armament and displacement tons just below 2000. The Neptune was only 3-4 meters longer. But the Neptune bucentaure class was a never and tougher class than the older temeraire class.

So how is these ship portrayed in Sails of Glory.
With only a 28 points difference in cost is it a better ship ?

Ares have given our new ship a burden of 6. Something that I felt was realy high when I first noticed it. It meant it was as strong as the 1st rates.
But now when I have studied the ship I see that it is little bit lower then them. Netune will sink if it reach 60 damage to the hull. The first rates will sink if they got 66 damage.
So there are a small difference that I would say is to little compare to the French 1st rates that had twice as high tonnage. Its burden should have been 5. With a burden of 6 the Neptune endures 15 more damage than the other 3rd rates before it is sunk. And that is alot.
So this value should have been on a second rate ship rather than a 3rd rate.

When it comes to firepower it also is slightly stronger then Commerce de Bordeux. And can keep a higher Cannon and Musket value through damaged boxes giving a better rating in firepower (Cannon & musket value added through every box)

With this rating you see the general picture.
The Neptune Cannon: 105 Musket: 34
Commerce de Bordeux Cannon: 93 Musket: 23

The Cannon fire Power of this ship is placed in the right scale and it is something I am satisfied with.
The musket fire power may be little bit to strong If you compare to other similar ships with same crew value. It was normal to have one marine soldier for every cannon. So this will only give 5 soldiers more than a 74 gun SOL.
The ship strength in Firepower and HTS is more like a 2nd rate ship.

So the ship is clearly stronger and tougher so why not buy it for only 28 points more.

The weakness of the 80 gun SOL is it movement and sailing capacity. Ares have really penalized it by lowering this 3rd rate veer rating from 5 to 3. Same as all the 1st rates SOL.
It also moves as slow as the English 1st rates both in turning and speed. But slightly better than the French first rates.
I think Ares do penalize this ship to much compare to it beeing about same scale and it is a never and better model. And its armament is about the same. It should move better than this.

The 28 points are clearly worth the strength and toughness of this ship but you need to consider that this ship won’t be so easy to control as a normal 74 gun 3rd rate.
It looks like you get what you pay for and you need to decide what playstyle you like.

And in the end it will be the one who is the best captain that will win the day.

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