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Subject: Series of questions/clarifications rss

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brian
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Finally having a chance to read the rules with all components in front of me, I have a few questions/comments that I can't find elsewhere or weren't officially answered.

Questions
1) When Finger of Fate is played, all players discard a card and switch hands. Are unplayed Pirate cards considered part of your hand for this purpose? Or are the two card types kept separate?

2) Can someone give an example of when 4.55 may go into effect? This is the "no possible actions available, discard 1 card per action." I fail to see how you wouldn't have an action available. "Must play" cards are already resolved and all remaining cards have Action Points associated with them (even when they default back to the Pirate's Initiative Rating). So how would there be a situation where no action points are available?

3) When a Pirate Converts to a KC, does it affect that Pirate in any way (and more importantly, any points scored for that player)? Or is it just a means to bring out another KC, being dependent on a retired pirate being available, and has no other effect?

4) Does Jubilation equal 15 points on the Loyalty chart (since Mutiny = 0)? In other words, can I increase loyalty above the printed 14? Does anything special happen when the crew is "jubilating"? Or is this left over from a previous mechanic?

5) I am confused as to how many Anti-Pirate actions can actually occur. I understand 1 player per pirate action; I also understand no duplicate actions if multiple pirate actions are taken. But the rules also states that a KC can continue to harrass the Pirate throughout his turn. Does this mean that if Player B uses a KC to harrass Player A during his first action and continues to harrass him during following actions, that Player B blocks any other player from any Anti-pirate actions? In other words, does a continuing KC action prevent new AP actions or can a continuing KC action happen simultaneously with another AP non-KC action?

6) In order to sack a port, it must be your next immediate action from when you attacked the port (even if it carries over into the next turn). However, the play note under 9.55 says that if a D&R is played on the Pirate who just attacked a port, that he cannot sack the port until the D&R is removed. Does this mean he can use his next 2 actions to remove the D&R and resume sacking the port as normal? Or must he spend 2 actions to remove the D&R, spend an action to exit the port back into the sea area, spend another action to re-attack the port, and then spend yet another action to sack it as the rules imply?

7) Following along the same lines, sacking a port is an automatic D&R, and involuntary as well. But 9.55 states that a Pirate only need to spend 1 action to remove the D&R. Based on 13.1, since this is an involuntary D&R, it costs 2 actions to remove. Which rule is correct? Does sacking a port count as an exception to the rules in these two cases?

Clarifications
1) Movement points: 1 action point per area moved. Transit boxes state it costs 1 to move in and 1 to move out. Is this just over-clarfication? It should not cost 2 points to move from a transit box to a sea area (1 to move out of the transit box per 7.2 and 1 to move into a sea area per 7.11), correct? It should be a total of 1 movement.

2) Notoriety / Net worth - start at Zero for each pirate at the beginning of the game or when they are first deployed, correct? (Mostly questioning NP as I didn't see it anywhere but orignially assumed each Pirate started with some notoriety)

3) Does "In-port Actions" cost one Action Point and consist of ALL of the following: Ransom Hostage, Convert Booty to Net Worth, Refit, and Purchase Safe Haven Status? It seems that I can do any or all of these for 1 Action but the example under 9.43 is confusing. It basically says "continuing the previous example, the Pirate spends another action to do the next activity." This implies each of these activities are separate actions.

4) Booty: wanted to clarify means to get it and how it is stored.
...a) Loot Merchant Ship - goes into empty hold
...b) Sack Attack port - goes into empty hold
...c) Ransom hostage - added to existing hold (should not have any empty since you just looted)
...d) Booty Grab - added to existing hold (can go into empty since it is possible no holds are filled at this point
...e) Buried Treasure - added to existing hold (and same scenario as Booty Grab)
Any others?

5) Cards: wanted to clarify these as well and make sure I understand them all:
...a) Must Play Immediately - are drawn during the active Player's turn and are basically interrupt cards to the game. They must be resolved before continuing.
...b) Hold Until Played (with no anti-pirate mark) - These are the only cards that can be played for an event by the active Player. Cards with an "And" MUST be played as the event and then optionally grant the player action points as well. Most of these cards should only vbe played by the active player but a couple can be played if a non-active player is attacked (Booty grab) or if he wants to cancel a card.
...c) Hold Until Played (with Anti-Pirate mark) - These cards may only be played by the active player for the Action points only, and therefore only one can be played during a player turn by the active player. There may be a few exceptions as I haven't looked up all the cards.
...d) Since the majority of cards are AP cards, it will be rare to have 4 playable cards during your active turn. In order to make this happen, a player would need to have at least 3 non-Anti-Pirate cards in hand. Therefore, the majority of card playing will occur by AP's during the active player's turn.

Errata?
1) Potential: example under 9.43 incorrect if In-port Actions ALL cost 1 Action point

2) On Player chart: the Procedure: Pirate Attacks Port looks like it has a copy/paste carry-over from the previous procedure. When attacking a port, there should be no further influence from a warship. The text "Warship adds its Combat rating" should be deleted.

3) Rulebook states in 9.58 that attacking another port with the same nationality as your Safe Haven does not affect your Safe haven (in other words it remains as is). The Player chart contradicts this under Procedure: How to Use the Port Grids Step #3. It states that attacking another port of the same nation as your safe haven causes you to lose your safe haven. Which is correct?
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Troy Hughes
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Great questions and notes!

I have one answer, to question #5:
In each Pirate Turn action, any number of AP actions may be occur as long as none are duplicated. Each AP Player may only perform one AP action total during the entire Pirate Turn, unless he's using a KC.

So: Blackbeard is performing three actions on his Pirate Turn, in a 5-player game.

Blackbeard's Action #1 is to Move to an adjacent Sea Area.
- Bob plays Wear and Tear on Blackbeard, and can perform no other AP actions the rest of Blackbeard's turn.
- Sam activates his KC to follow Blackbeard and attempt to intercept. (Say he doesn't catch him.)
(Joe has a Wear and Tear card also, but cannot play it this action because one already has.)

Blackbeard's Action #2 is to Find a merchant ship.
- George plays Warship Sighting and places a warship in Blackbeard's sea area. He attempts to catch him as part of the same action, but does not succeed.
- Joe performs the Use On-Station Warship action to try to catch Blackbeard again. (Same warship, but different action!) He catches Blackbeard, but the wily old pirate handily sinks the warship.
- Sam activates his KC again, and again cannot catch Blackbeard.
(Blackbeard can now finally continue with his find action. He successfully finds a nice juicy merchant ship.)

Blackbeard's Action #3 is to Loot the merchant ship.
- At this point Bob, George and Joe have all played their one AP action for the turn and can't do anything else.
- But Sam still has his KC. He lets Blackbeard roll on the booty chart for his haul, torture a hostage, and gain his notoriety before attempting to intercept Blackbeard one more time. This time the KC succeeds, and in the ensuing battle succeeds in sinking Blackbeard. Sam gains VPs equal to half Blackbeard's notoriety! (Which is why he waited for the pirate to loot the ship and kill the hostage. Stone cold bastache!)

arrrh

Note that during action number 2, Joe could have played his Wear and Tear card - since you cannot duplicate AP actions during the same Pirate action, but you can during another action later in the turn. But Joe decided doing so would just make it easier for Sam's KC to catch Blackbeard - so he chose to use the now on-station warship. (Which is a great tactic for a double attempt by warships - once with the card play, and if that doesn't succeed, again by another player with a "use o-s warship"...)

Note: I'm pretty sure this is all correct, based on what I've read in clarifications so far.





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brian
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redjack11 wrote:
I have one answer, to question #5:
In each Pirate Turn action, any number of AP actions may be occur as long as none are duplicated. Each AP Player may only perform one AP action total during the entire Pirate Turn, unless he's using a KC.

Ah, i think I misread this the first time around and clung to this perceptions. I thought each player only had one AP action (which was correct), and that only one player could react per pirate action (incorrect).

So as long as they were all different, all anti-pirate players could perform an action against the same action of the pirate player. Since there are 4 different AP actions, in a 5-player game, all 4 AP could select a single AP. They would be done the rest of the turn (excluding the one who uses a KC), but it is possible to activate all of them at once. Is this all right?
 
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zachary johnston
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Just my 2 cents worth (your questions really got me thinking... top stuff!)

Questions
1)
Quote:
When Finger of Fate is played, all players discard a card and switch hands. Are unplayed Pirate cards considered part of your hand for this purpose? Or are the two card types kept separate?

Include the pirate card in your hand. If you look through 5.1 it states a couple of times that the Pirate Card is 'In Hand'. It's just bad luck (fickle if you like...)

2) good question

3)
Quote:
When a Pirate Converts to a KC, does it affect that Pirate in any way (and more importantly, any points scored for that player)? Or is it just a means to bring out another KC, being dependent on a retired pirate being available, and has no other effect?

The latter. Just like the random 'Ex-Pirate' token in the KC token bin.

4) another good question...

5) i agree with troy's answer to this one.
You replied with
Quote:
Since there are 4 different AP actions, in a 5-player game, all 4 AP could select a single AP. They would be done the rest of the turn (excluding the one who uses a KC), but it is possible to activate all of them at once. Is this all right?

I won't answer for Troy, but yes, that's right (well, that's what we read into it...). Don't forget that you can't discuss AP actions with each other though!

6)
Quote:
In order to sack a port, it must be your next immediate action from when you attacked the port (even if it carries over into the next turn). However, the play note under 9.55 says that if a D&R is played on the Pirate who just attacked a port, that he cannot sack the port until the D&R is removed. Does this mean he can use his next 2 actions to remove the D&R and resume sacking the port as normal? Or must he spend 2 actions to remove the D&R, spend an action to exit the port back into the sea area, spend another action to re-attack the port, and then spend yet another action to sack it as the rules imply?

yet another good question!
This did happen to us. We played that as long as you declare your intention to sack, you had to get rid of D&R and the very next action (even on the next player turn) had to be the sacking (the party suddenly got very organised and destructive!). I remember reading an example of this sort of application somewhere, either in the book or on this ever growing forum, but i can't for the life of me find it.

7)
Quote:
But 9.55 states that a Pirate only need to spend 1 action to remove the D&R. Based on 13.1, since this is an involuntary D&R, it costs 2 actions to remove. Which rule is correct? Does sacking a port count as an exception to the rules in these two cases?

Since it's quite clear in 13.1, i'd just say it's a grammer thing. If one is being overly picky, you actually loose one action then spend 1 action to recover (13.23), so still only spending 1 action.

Clarifications
1)
Quote:
Movement points: 1 action point per area moved. Transit boxes state it costs 1 to move in and 1 to move out. Is this just over-clarfication? It should not cost 2 points to move from a transit box to a sea area (1 to move out of the transit box per 7.2 and 1 to move into a sea area per 7.11), correct? It should be a total of 1 movement.

7.11 says it all. eg. The "South America" Sea Area to the "South America - Gold Coast Transit Box", or vica versa. And yeah, over clarification.

2)
Quote:
Notoriety / Net worth - start at Zero for each pirate at the beginning of the game or when they are first deployed, correct? (Mostly questioning NP as I didn't see it anywhere but orignially assumed each Pirate started with some notoriety)

Start on 0 NP. How lucky would you be if you draw a pirate that had X amount of VP out of the deck just for being a hard arse? not to mention the scrabble for choosing said pirate with the optional setup...

3)
Quote:
Does "In-port Actions" cost one Action Point and consist of ALL of the following: Ransom Hostage, Convert Booty to Net Worth, Refit, and Purchase Safe Haven Status? It seems that I can do any or all of these for 1 Action but the example under 9.43 is confusing. It basically says "continuing the previous example, the Pirate spends another action to do the next activity." This implies each of these activities are separate actions.

Good question - I'd say it's an errata-esque thing, as 4.5 is pretty clear on what it intends. It's also good to note that 9.41 has a clear order if you are doing more than one activity as you In Port action.

4)
Quote:
Booty: wanted to clarify means to get it and how it is stored.
...a) Loot Merchant Ship - goes into empty hold
...b) Sack port - goes into empty hold
...c) Ransom hostage - added to existing hold (should not have any empty since you just looted)
...d) Booty Grab - added to existing hold (can go into empty since it is possible no holds are filled at this point
...e) Buried Treasure - added to existing hold (and same scenario as Booty Grab)
Any others?

I take it that you mean Attack Port rather than Sack Port? Haven't come across any others...(you could put ransom booty in an empty hold, but why would you?)

Errata
1) + 2) + 3)
well spotted...
and i'm especially keen to see an answer to 3...





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brian
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tacet wrote:
I take it that you mean Attack Port rather than Sack Port? Haven't come across any others...(you could put ransom booty in an empty hold, but why would you?)

Thanks for your responses! Yes, I did mean attack a port. I am surprised I didn't get the two switched more often.
 
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ColtsFan76 wrote:
redjack11 wrote:
I have one answer, to question #5:
In each Pirate Turn action, any number of AP actions may be occur as long as none are duplicated. Each AP Player may only perform one AP action total during the entire Pirate Turn, unless he's using a KC.

Ah, i think I misread this the first time around and clung to this perceptions. I thought each player only had one AP action (which was correct), and that only one player could react per pirate action (incorrect).

So as long as they were all different, all anti-pirate players could perform an action against the same action of the pirate player. Since there are 4 different AP actions, in a 5-player game, all 4 AP could select a single AP. They would be done the rest of the turn (excluding the one who uses a KC), but it is possible to activate all of them at once. Is this all right?


Yes.
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First, thanks to Zachary for his responses. I agree with most of them. Here are my answers:

ColtsFan76 wrote:
Finally having a chance to read the rules with all components in front of me, I have a few questions/comments that I can't find elsewhere or weren't officially answered.

Questions
1) When Finger of Fate is played, all players discard a card and switch hands. Are unplayed Pirate cards considered part of your hand for this purpose? Or are the two card types kept separate?


They're kept separate - I'll clarify that in the rules. Zachary's right - it says "in hand" for the pirate cards - but it's actually a separate hand.

Quote:
2) Can someone give an example of when 4.55 may go into effect? This is the "no possible actions available, discard 1 card per action." I fail to see how you wouldn't have an action available.


It's very, very rare, but it happened once in playtesting so we had to deal with it. I can't remember the details of that incident. But you'll almost never have to worry about it.

Quote:
3) When a Pirate Converts to a KC, does it affect that Pirate in any way (and more importantly, any points scored for that player)? Or is it just a means to bring out another KC, being dependent on a retired pirate being available, and has no other effect?

Doesn't affect the pirate in any way whatsoever - but a good question and one I need to clarify.

Quote:
4) Does Jubilation equal 15 points on the Loyalty chart (since Mutiny = 0)? In other words, can I increase loyalty above the printed 14? Does anything special happen when the crew is "jubilating"? Or is this left over from a previous mechanic?

Can't go above 15, and "Jubilation" has no actual game meaning. In fact, I didn't even know it was on the chart until it was printed.

Quote:
5) I am confused as to how many Anti-Pirate actions can actually occur. I understand 1 player per pirate action; I also understand no duplicate actions if multiple pirate actions are taken. But the rules also states that a KC can continue to harrass the Pirate throughout his turn. Does this mean that if Player B uses a KC to harrass Player A during his first action and continues to harrass him during following actions, that Player B blocks any other player from any Anti-pirate actions? In other words, does a continuing KC action prevent new AP actions or can a continuing KC action happen simultaneously with another AP non-KC action?

Using a KC is an AP Action, so it's the one that takes effect. However, the harassment rule allows for a KC action to continue, and while that it happening other AP actions may occur. But not any other KC actions (because only one AP action TYPE per player per pirate action).

Quote:
6) In order to sack a port, it must be your next immediate action from when you attacked the port (even if it carries over into the next turn). However, the play note under 9.55 says that if a D&R is played on the Pirate who just attacked a port, that he cannot sack the port until the D&R is removed. Does this mean he can use his next 2 actions to remove the D&R and resume sacking the port as normal?

Yes.

Quote:
7) Following along the same lines, sacking a port is an automatic D&R, and involuntary as well. But 9.55 states that a Pirate only need to spend 1 action to remove the D&R. Based on 13.1, since this is an involuntary D&R, it costs 2 actions to remove. Which rule is correct? Does sacking a port count as an exception to the rules in these two cases?
Errata here - needs 2 actions to remove the D&R once in port. Thanks.

Quote:
Clarifications
1) Movement points: 1 action point per area moved. Transit boxes state it costs 1 to move in and 1 to move out. Is this just over-clarfication? It should not cost 2 points to move from a transit box to a sea area (1 to move out of the transit box per 7.2 and 1 to move into a sea area per 7.11), correct? It should be a total of 1 movement.

It's 1 to move into the transit box and 1 to move into an adjoining sea are.

Quote:
2) Notoriety / Net worth - start at Zero for each pirate at the beginning of the game or when they are first deployed, correct?
Yes.

Quote:
3) Does "In-port Actions" cost one Action Point and consist of ALL of the following: Ransom Hostage, Convert Booty to Net Worth, Refit, and Purchase Safe Haven Status? It seems that I can do any or all of these for 1 Action but the example under 9.43 is confusing. It basically says "continuing the previous example, the Pirate spends another action to do the next activity." This implies each of these activities are separate actions.

See 9.41 - every item in the numbered list may be performed as ONE In-Port Activities action. 9.43 should say "uses the same In-Port Activities Action to ..." Good catch.

Quote:
4) Booty: wanted to clarify means to get it and how it is stored.
...a) Loot Merchant Ship - goes into empty hold
...b) Sack Attack port - goes into empty hold
...c) Ransom hostage - added to existing hold (should not have any empty since you just looted)
...d) Booty Grab - added to existing hold (can go into empty since it is possible no holds are filled at this point
...e) Buried Treasure - added to existing hold (and same scenario as Booty Grab)
Any others?

Looks good to me, and a useful chart to have.

Quote:
5) Cards: wanted to clarify these as well and make sure I understand them all:
...a) Must Play Immediately - are drawn during the active Player's turn and are basically interrupt cards to the game. They must be resolved before continuing.

Yes.

Quote:
...b) Hold Until Played (with no anti-pirate mark) - These are the only cards that can be played for an event by the active Player. Cards with an "And" MUST be played as the event and then optionally grant the player action points as well. Most of these cards should only vbe played by the active player but a couple can be played if a non-active player is attacked (Booty grab) or if he wants to cancel a card.

Yes.
Quote:
...c) Hold Until Played (with Anti-Pirate mark) - These cards may only be played by the active player for the Action points only, and therefore only one can be played during a player turn by the active player. There may be a few exceptions as I haven't looked up all the cards.

Yes. But of course these may also be played for the event by the non-active player.

Quote:
...d) Since the majority of cards are AP cards, it will be rare to have 4 playable cards during your active turn. In order to make this happen, a player would need to have at least 3 non-Anti-Pirate cards in hand. Therefore, the majority of card playing will occur by AP's during the active player's turn.

Yes.

Quote:
Errata?
1) Potential: example under 9.43 incorrect if In-port Actions ALL cost 1 Action point

Yes. Will correct.

Quote:
2) On Player chart: the Procedure: Pirate Attacks Port looks like it has a copy/paste carry-over from the previous procedure. When attacking a port, there should be no further influence from a warship. The text "Warship adds its Combat rating" should be deleted.
Yes. Will correct.

Quote:
3) Rulebook states in 9.58 that attacking another port with the same nationality as your Safe Haven does not affect your Safe haven (in other words it remains as is). The Player chart contradicts this under Procedure: How to Use the Port Grids Step #3. It states that attacking another port of the same nation as your safe haven causes you to lose your safe haven. Which is correct?

Rulebook is correct, but I think I'll change this after consulting with Richard. I like the card's version better.

Thanks.
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Troy Hughes
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tacet wrote:


Quote:
Booty: wanted to clarify means to get it and how it is stored.
...a) Loot Merchant Ship - goes into empty hold
...b) Sack port - goes into empty hold
...c) Ransom hostage - added to existing hold (should not have any empty since you just looted)
...d) Booty Grab - added to existing hold (can go into empty since it is possible no holds are filled at this point
...e) Buried Treasure - added to existing hold (and same scenario as Booty Grab)
Any others?

I take it that you mean Attack Port rather than Sack Port? Haven't come across any others...(you could put ransom booty in an empty hold, but why would you?)


One reason: If you ransomed your hostage at a Neutral port, and didn't want to suffer the 2:1 conversion rate. Load it into your hold and sail for that safe haven! cool


 
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nrandall wrote:
Quote:
2) Can someone give an example of when 4.55 may go into effect? This is the "no possible actions available, discard 1 card per action." I fail to see how you wouldn't have an action available.


It's very, very rare, but it happened once in playtesting so we had to deal with it. I can't remember the details of that incident. But you'll almost never have to worry about it.


Example: A player's only pirate retires/dies on the last action of his turn. On his next turn, he has only Actions=Initiative cards (say, all Double Cross). Since he currently has no In-play pirates to assign the Initiative value to (4.52), he must discard to gain Actions.

Like we said, rare but possible.
 
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nrandall wrote:
Quote:
6) In order to sack a port, it must be your next immediate action from when you attacked the port (even if it carries over into the next turn). However, the play note under 9.55 says that if a D&R is played on the Pirate who just attacked a port, that he cannot sack the port until the D&R is removed. Does this mean he can use his next 2 actions to remove the D&R and resume sacking the port as normal?

Yes.

So has it been ruled that you can now do a Recovery (two, actually) in a port that is effectively anti-pirate (9.58)? Why wouldn't the now anti-pirate governor just oust the drunk pirate?
This one bothers me as it negates a tactic we used in playtest. The post-port-attack D&R was a way to keep (or at least delay) a pirate from sacking a port. It forced him to leave, sail to a non-hostile port, recover and then return to attack the (now fortified) port again.


nrandall wrote:
Quote:
7) Following along the same lines, sacking a port is an automatic D&R, and involuntary as well. But 9.55 states that a Pirate only need to spend 1 action to remove the D&R. Based on 13.1, since this is an involuntary D&R, it costs 2 actions to remove. Which rule is correct? Does sacking a port count as an exception to the rules in these two cases?

Errata here - needs 2 actions to remove the D&R once in port. Thanks.


Since the D&R counters are 2-sided, I recommend marking one side with a '2' and the other with a '1' to help keep track.
 
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Dave Klempa wrote:
nrandall wrote:
Quote:
2) Can someone give an example of when 4.55 may go into effect? This is the "no possible actions available, discard 1 card per action." I fail to see how you wouldn't have an action available.


It's very, very rare, but it happened once in playtesting so we had to deal with it. I can't remember the details of that incident. But you'll almost never have to worry about it.


Example: A player's only pirate retires/dies on the last action of his turn. On his next turn, he has only Actions=Initiative cards (say, all Double Cross). Since he currently has no In-play pirates to assign the Initiative value to (4.52), he must discard to gain Actions.

Like we said, rare but possible.

Thank you, I was trying to figure out how this might happen but didn't see the possibilities. I can see now how this may happen. But this should be only 1 discard to get 1 action, correct? Because you can use one Action to draw and place a pirate and then have the iniative rating to continue on. (Unless you wanted two pirates at once, I guess.)
 
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ColtsFan76 wrote:
Thank you, I was trying to figure out how this might happen but didn't see the possibilities. I can see now how this may happen. But this should be only 1 discard to get 1 action, correct? Because you can use one Action to draw and place a pirate and then have the iniative rating to continue on. (Unless you wanted two pirates at once, I guess.)


The way I read 4.55, you are discarding the cards to get your actions for the turn (up to two). I don't think you can discard for an action, use that action to deploy a pirate, and then play a card for (initiative) actions.
 
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You are correct. Actions are still limited. But I guess you could discard to get the actions and then play card(s) for the event(s).
 
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Not to be negative but didn't ANY of these issues come about in playtesting? I'm trying to wrap my head around this game after buying it and everytime I do, I come here and there are more questions or changes to the rules.

I am trying to understand how these weren't addressed in playtesting before releasing the game. I mean, aren't things proof-read? I was reading the last page of the manual where Neil (hi Neil!) talks about the older game and the newer and.. . well, it just ends! Did the printing press malfunction? Did someone not read the gold copy that was set to be printed? How do things like that or the copy and paste error on the procedure card make it into production? I can understand some of these rule clarifications after the fact but some of these seem so blantant - like how would they NOT have been found? I'm not trying to be negative but just more understanding it all. I know I have no idea of the amount of work that goes into a production like this and obviously some things are bound to slip by. Just makes me wonder if some issues were un-resolved due to the same players playtesting or rushing the game to meet a deadline.

Also, will new rulebooks be printed? I'd like to order one and trash the one I have. Love the 'new' rulebook smell! (sorta like new car smell)
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derp wrote:
Not to be negative...

I don't think your asking these questions is necessarily negative. There do seem to be an inordinate amount of bugs in this game. It reminds me of modern video game development, where a publisher will push out a buggy game knowing that they can release a patch after the fact. Knowing that they have a safety net, it encourages a more reckless approach to QA.

I think some of the problem, as I dig it, is that the game has been streamlined to appeal to modern tastes, but folks who possess those modern tastes are less likely to be forgiving of stuff like this, as opposed to old school grognards who are used to wading through errata and clarifications.

I feel bad for anyone who buys the game and doesn't visit ConSimWorld or BGG... The game is nigh unto unplayable out of the box, just by dint of the copious contradictions and typos.

BUT!

If you follow the forums and get some stalwart fellows to play with you, it's a very fun experience. There's also the balance between having the game in hand sooner v. later. I preordered this thing a loooong time ago. Is it worth getting sooner, to serve as in situ playtesters? For we early adopters, I guess the answer is yes.
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derp wrote:
Not to be negative but didn't ANY of these issues come about in playtesting? I'm trying to wrap my head around this game after buying it and everytime I do, I come here and there are more questions or changes to the rules.

I am trying to understand how these weren't addressed in playtesting before releasing the game. I mean, aren't things proof-read? I was reading the last page of the manual where Neil (hi Neil!) talks about the older game and the newer and.. . well, it just ends! Did the printing press malfunction? Did someone not read the gold copy that was set to be printed? How do things like that or the copy and paste error on the procedure card make it into production? I can understand some of these rule clarifications after the fact but some of these seem so blantant - like how would they NOT have been found? I'm not trying to be negative but just more understanding it all. I know I have no idea of the amount of work that goes into a production like this and obviously some things are bound to slip by. Just makes me wonder if some issues were un-resolved due to the same players playtesting or rushing the game to meet a deadline.

Also, will new rulebooks be printed? I'd like to order one and trash the one I have. Love the 'new' rulebook smell! (sorta like new car smell)


GMT rarely prints new rulebooks, unless there's a new edition. They do, however, make "Living Rules" available as PDF downloads.

In answer to your questions, yes, Blackbeard was proofread. In fact, six or seven times after the rules were finished, and twice after they were laid out. I was the person who laid them out, and I was one of the proofers of the laid-out version - not the best arrangement, certainly, but unavoidable in this case given that the printers couldn't be kept waiting any longer - print jobs need to be scheduled or the price shoots way up - and it's not that BB was rushed (it most certainly wasn't), but rather that I took final development right to the limit and should stopped earlier to accommodate all the possible proofing changes.

As for playtesting, keep in mind that most of my answers so far have been clarifications, not changes. None of those came up in playtesting, but with complex rules they arise almost all the time (not always, but usually). People simply read things differently. As for catching problems or discrepancies, playtesters didn't notice these, or at least didn't report such problems, or reported them and I missed them.

You have to understand that playtesting is a 100% volunteer operation, and at any given time I might have between 1 and 10 players doing playtesting - I made four calls for playtesters during Blackbeard's development, and got a significant number of volunteers only from the first two calls, most of whom got the rules and didn't do any actual testing. That's simply the way playtesting works - you ask for results, and many people mean to help out, but most never do: real life takes over, or they can't get their friends to play the game for whatever reason. Happens all the time. So we take the results we can get, and we try to anticipate anything else that can happen. And remember that there are plenty of reasons for playtesters not to have trouble with the game's rules or mechanics - if they don't have a problem with a rule and therefore don't report it, there's not much anyone can do about it.

As for the question, "How could these things possibly make it through production?" - well, I used to ask that all the time. Then I started writing books and developing games. I no longer ask, although I do everything I can to make sure bad things don't happen. I'm not the best at doing so, certainly.

I hope that helps.
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nrandall wrote:
As for the question, "How could these things possibly make it through production?" - well, I used to ask that all the time. Then I started writing books and developing games. I no longer ask, although I do everything I can to make sure bad things don't happen. I'm not the best at doing so, certainly.

Not that I have the experience of Neil but this was my feeling as well.

I tend to find a few things with GMT, DOW, and other companies rules. Then I got a chance to help DOW proof something small. I spent a couple nights looking at it. Read it through, play the parts out, cross-reference the orignal rules. i found a few things here and there that were unclear, incorrect, or just plain wrong. But even after it went out, someone still found a couple things and had a few more questions that never corssed my mind. It is just the nature of the beast.

Neil and richard did a good job of trying to duplicate rules hear and there so you don't have to flip back and forth. That's a positive. But if you do that too much and need to change something, then it becomes a problem and you have to track it all down again. You miss one spot and now you have contradictions.

You just need to be used to GMT's way of doing things. A 1st edition is rarely error free. You are better off waiting for a 2nd edition - if it ever goes to 2nd edition and if you are patient enough to sit on the sidelines while everyone plays.

But to say Blackbeard is unplayable out of the box is just not true. Overall, I think it worded decently and not too much needs to be corrected to incorporate it all. Most of the calrifications are common sense.
 
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Quote:
But to say Blackbeard is unplayable out of the box is just not true. Overall, I think it worded decently and not too much needs to be corrected to incorporate it all. Most of the calrifications are common sense.

Agreed. I have played three time with, as it turns out, errors in play because of my reading of the rules. The clarifications available on-line, which will become a download available from the GMT site, I am applying to my play.

But this has not prevented me or my friends from enjoying the game as it is.

This rulebook is not as "bullet proof" as some (Downtown), and not as well organized as others (Combat Commander), but is far better than many I have read over the years.
 
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ColtsFan76 wrote:

But to say Blackbeard is unplayable out of the box is just not true. Overall, I think it worded decently and not too much needs to be corrected to incorporate it all. Most of the calrifications are common sense.

Really? The problem of running out of Governors?! This was NEVER encountered during solo testing? Hard to imagine? Playing "..as many as your cards as you want (and that you have) during your Pirate Player Turn, and you may play them in ANY order you wish, whether for Event or Action." not being anywhere listed in the rules? I'm sorry to be critical but in all honesty someone has to. There was a gentlemen who posted in another forum about this game being outdated and complex. It certainly was updated but sometimes I wonder if the game complexity was not really revisited as much as it should have been. It's like someone thinks that by adding every sort of rule you can make it more of a game. All rules do is seek to define specifically how the players can act/function. By having so many rules the way in which players can act/function is narrowed down to a precise scope probably in which the game designer/developer intended. However, that is not always desirable! First of all the rulebook reads more like a codec of law than a game rulebook. Secondly, I believe the game could have been further reduced in complexity by eliminating some of the redundancy without really ruining the game. Let me give you an example of how I sometimes feel:

When raiding a port, if its raining (see 14.54 to calculate percent of rain and sub-section 6.5 to determine cloud cover) subtract 1 from your initiative. If its not raining, take the amount of current pirates you are playing multiply it by 10 and divide by the combined pirates' cunning. If when you attempted to raid (see 98.12 for failed attempt) and it WAS raining, roll d66 (see 7.31 for possible die change) and if you roll higher the ports calculated defense (see 6.7 for port defenses) then you failed. If you failed but you rolled less than the combined pirate cunning multiplied by 4 and it was sunny (see 94.15 for calcuating sun position) then you have won the battle. If you attempted to raid the port and it was sunny per 94.15, roll to determine if you were wearing a shirt. If you are, add +1 to your rolls. If you were not wearing a shirt, take your total wealth, multiply it by the ports number and divide it by your ability in sewing. If the result was divisable by 4, you have successfully raided the port. If not, you have failed.

In reality, while fun to see if it was raining and if it was cloudy, etc., to simplify the game some, you should reduce the need to keep track of things on paper with pen/pencil, reduce the smaller things that while happened in real life slow the game down or force you to consult the rulebook for a minor detail or exception, etc. This sort of thing.

See below for a quick sample of what I dug up concerning the changes already made to this game that I feel result in changing what one could expect out of the box and what I question about playtesting. Mind you, not only from other people, but the designers, employees, etc.

--------------------------------------------------------------------

Quote:
OFFICIAL.
You can play as many as your cards as you want (and that you have) during your Pirate Player Turn, and you may play them in ANY order you wish, whether for Event or Action. Only one card may be played as an Action card, but it may be played at any time within that structure.
This has been a bis premise since the initial design . . .I thought it was stated so in the rules.
RHB


Quote:
We may have one or two additional official changes to the Warships procedure. The following, however, is in effect immediately (I left it out of the rulebook inadvertently).

Please change the second bullet point in 6.45 to read as follows (the actual addition is in bold):

"If the Warship’s total is lower, or the same as that of the Pirate total, the Pirate escapes and there is no battle. The Warship remains On
Station where it is (and can be activated by any AP Player with an
AP Action in a later Player-Turn). The Pirate's action is immediately cancelled."

-Neil


Does the Pirate have a choice? For example, if the Pirate really wants to loot a Merchant Ship full of Booty, can he accept the fight instead of trying to Flee?
This Rule does not affect KCs?

Quote:
No. But it's under consideration. -Neil


7) Following along the same lines, sacking a port is an automatic D&R, and involuntary as well. But 9.55 states that a Pirate only need to spend 1 action to remove the D&R. Based on 13.1, since this is an involuntary D&R, it costs 2 actions to remove. Which rule is correct? Does sacking a port count as an exception to the rules in these two cases?
Quote:

Errata here - needs 2 actions to remove the D&R once in port. Thanks. - Neil


3) Does "In-port Actions" cost one Action Point and consist of ALL of the following: Ransom Hostage, Convert Booty to Net Worth, Refit, and Purchase Safe Haven Status? It seems that I can do any or all of these for 1 Action but the example under 9.43 is confusing. It basically says "continuing the previous example, the Pirate spends another action to do the next activity." This implies each of these activities are separate actions.

Quote:
9.43 should say "uses the same In-Port Activities Action to ..." Good catch. -Neil


1) Potential: example under 9.43 incorrect if In-port Actions ALL cost 1 Action point

Quote:
Yes. Will correct. - Neil


2) On Player chart: the Procedure: Pirate Attacks Port looks like it has a copy/paste carry-over from the previous procedure. When attacking a port, there should be no further influence from a warship. The text "Warship adds its Combat rating" should be deleted.

Quote:
Yes. Will correct. - Neil


3) Rulebook states in 9.58 that attacking another port with the same nationality as your Safe Haven does not affect your Safe haven (in other words it remains as is). The Player chart contradicts this under Procedure: How to Use the Port Grids Step #3. It states that attacking another port of the same nation as your safe haven causes you to lose your safe haven. Which is correct?

Quote:
Rulebook is correct, but I think I'll change this after consulting with Richard. I like the card's version better. Thanks. - Neil


Quote:
Oops.

The Play Note in 10.31 should read:

Play Note: A KC may not intercept a Pirate on the Player-Turn a Pirate is placed (because the Deploy a Pirate Action is not listed above).

Sorry about using an undefined "it".

-Neil


Quote:
NEW OFFICIAL RULE FROM RICHARD H BERG AND NEIL RANDALL:

Coltsfan76 wording, not theirs ----

When playing the long game or solitaire, change the Governor cards to bring out only 1 governor instead of 2. This allows the Governors to keep being placed throughout the entire game.


Quote:
First, go to the other thread about Solitaire - I just posted there this morning, so it should be near the top of the Active threads list. Here are two important things from it:

First, this correction:

"(19.10) The General Pardon Card: When the General Pardon card is drawn for the first time from the “Must Play Immediately” deck, nothing happens in the game, but you immediately shuffle this card into the “Hold Until Played” deck along with the "Hold Until Play" discards. From that point on, General Pardon functions exactly as in 17.2 of the rules."

Second, this omission:

"(19.20) Crew Loyalty: If Blackbeard's Crew Loyalty reaches zero, he loses 2d6 worth of Notoriety Points immediately and another 1d6 worth at the end of every one of his Player-Turns (not Actions) in which he does not raise the level above zero."

- Neil


Looking over the rules for D&R, I'm trying to figure out why anyone would declare D&R as part of a loot action (8.38). The result of doing so is that pirate may only move or recover D&R while in port. You don't even get the boost to Crew Loyalty until after you have performed the D&R recovery action in port.

It seems much more efficient to declare D&R as part of an in-port activities action.

Quote:
Well, one way to look at it is that not every possible action in a game needs to be advantageous to the player performing it. It could simply be something that newcomers would try and then learn that it's not very useful.

But that said, Richard and I are considering what to do about this one. - Neil

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You are, of course, free not to like the game.

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Oh no, I will force myself to learn the rules and I will play this game. My main gripe with the complexity is it scares away my non-gaming friends when trying to sit them down and get them into tabletop/board gaming. I'm then left to play solo, with the appended rules of course. That and sometimes making something more complex doesn't necessarily make it better. Just feedback from a customer.
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derp wrote:
ColtsFan76 wrote:

But to say Blackbeard is unplayable out of the box is just not true. Overall, I think it worded decently and not too much needs to be corrected to incorporate it all. Most of the calrifications are common sense.

Really? The problem of running out of Governors?!

You don't run out of governors when you play the game. you run out of governors when you play one of the 2 variants.

Quote:
See below for a quick sample of what I dug up concerning the changes already made to this game that I feel result in changing what one could expect out of the box and what I question about playtesting. Mind you, not only from other people, but the designers, employees, etc.

Thanks, but the majority of what you quote are things I have posted already. Most are quick questions, errata in examples of plays and minor contradictions that a simple follow a or follow b answers.

And most of what I posted is not stuff I encountered while playing but what I found on a more thorough reading of the rules.

Does the game need som clarification, yes. But a lot of games need this. Are there mistakes and contradictions? Yes. Is the game unplayable? Most definitely not. Evidence that many have played it and reported back. I would venture that most games are played incorrectly the first time (when no one present has played it before), yet these games are all playable and mostly enjoyable. Many people need to ask for clarifications to better grasp the rules and sometimes additional errors are flushed out.

But to get through these issues, all you need is problem solving skills, something I would think most serious gamers already possess. There are unplayable games; Blackbeard is not one of them.
 
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I don't think you'll be able to quote me on saying the game is unplayable. Just simply more 'buggy' than I'd care for. That and the complexity that adds to the game being a sort of rulebook reference game. At least until you commit the entire rules, sub-rules and exceptions to memory - including those listed on BGG.
 
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derp wrote:
Oh no, I will force myself to learn the rules and I will play this game. My main gripe with the complexity is it scares away my non-gaming friends when trying to sit them down and get them into tabletop/board gaming. I'm then left to play solo, with the appended rules of course. That and sometimes making something more complex doesn't necessarily make it better. Just feedback from a customer.


And appreciated, believe me. I commend you for your determination to play it even with the issues you see in it.

Someone has posted a file called a "Teaching Script". Why not download it and give it a try with your group? Apparently it worked quite well for the poster's group.

I hope your game goes really well. When are you playing it?
 
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derp wrote:
I don't think you'll be able to quote me on saying the game is unplayable.

Well somebody did!!! I thought it was on this thread but maybe it was another one. When you quoted me saying the game was unplayable, I thought it was you! So sorry for venting on you.

I can agree that I do not like to keep track of a lot of rules online either. I am just thankful that Neil and Richard have decided to insert them on BGG as well as anything on consimworld doesn't exist to me.

But I think you will find that playing it through, it's not that hard to get straight and some of these things are minor. I am not particularly pleased with the "you don't like the rule? no problem we'll change it!" attitude. But since I like the "original" rules as is (or their further clarifications, I'll just use those and reduce what I have to remember.
 
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