Our first day with Pirate's Cove. There were only 2 of us. We opted to play each with 1 ship, and with only 1 Legendary Pirate, just so we could go through a test game for learning purposes. Once that was done, we were chomping at the bit to play for real. We adopted the following 2 player rules:
- 2 ships per player
- each ship is run separately (gold, treasure)
- 2 ships can't meet except at Treasure Island and Pirate's Cove
- fame is totalled using a single marker
- 1 Legendary Pirate
Of the 5 games we played, the last was the most interesting, partly because we had started to get deeper into the strategy of what islands to choose, and partly because of the number of times we ended up fighting.
I was Bluebeard and Yellowbeard (stagger stagger crawl crawl. My opponent was Greenbeard and Redbeard. I rigged both my ships for heavy crew/cannons, and a bit of hull. My opponent opted for a more even rigging, but slightly different on his 2 ships. I thought I was lucky to draw a tavern card for 3 fame right off the top, when my opponent lays down Long John Silver's Parrot on his red ship!
The Legendary Pirate that plagued us many times in previous games, The Flying Dutchman, was the first black ship. We avoid her like...well...a big nasty black pirate ship that's almost impossible to kill.
After about 6 months of play, all ships were rigged very well, except for my poor Bluebeard's. He lost 2 battles in a row, one against the Royal Navy--crippled in a single shot. She was listing badly to starboard, so she spent a few turns chasing gold and upgrades, ignoring fame and treasure...and battles when possible.
Then--drum roll please--that daring Captain Redbeard orders his ship to attack The Flying Dutchman! I sit up in my chair and grab the dice! Arrrrrrrr! Before I can roll for the hopeful winning of the battle, Redbeard plays a Powder Keg. Interesting. I roll just a single hit, taking one myself in the process. Interesting. Redbeard grabs all the dice, lays down Grape Shot, and rolls 4 hits, sinking the Flying Dutchman in but a single combat round! 6 fame for him...and bragging rights for the rest of the night.
The next Legendary Pirate to show himself was the Cacafuego. Yellowbeard and Greenbeard fought mercilessly over her, but alas, Greenbeard took the 3 fame.
In the final month, all 4 of our ships met the Ann Bonney at Treasure Island. My opponent had 17 chests to bury. I had only 4. Now, if I had been thinking clearly, I would have fled, forcing my opponent to do battle alone. If he in fact lost the battle, he would have been unable to bury any chests. However the ale will flow, and I was caught up in the rush of cannon fire. We quickly dispatched the Black Pirate and turned our sites on each other. By this time, neither of my ships were a match for Redbeard's might, even though I was able to blow his Parrot right off from his shoulder a few turns back--this was probably payback.
Game end. Both opponent's ships at Treasure Island, burying all chests and some gold. My pirates hiding at "The Cove" making up excuses and lies for when they get back to the tavern.