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Subject: The Warship "Problem"; an Understanding and a Solution rss

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Richard Berg
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OK, let's look s little closer at this supposed lack of effectiveness of Warships.

First is having the Warship find the Pirate . . . which was what wtaships were historically very ineffecient at doing.

Most of the Warships have a Speed Rating of '3' Pirates Sloops are usually a '5' (maximum), Schooners a ';3' (max). That means, if the pirate ship has NO Speed damage, the Sloop has a 1 in 6 chance of Finding the Sloop. If the Sloop has Speed Damage, the odds increase dramatically for each such Damage Hit.

However, if the pirate ship is a(n Undamaged) Schooner, the odds are 50-50 that the Warship will Find the Pirate.

The thing of it is, if the Pirate escapes he has to discontinue the Action that brought in the Warship . . . which, even in "winning" the pirate loses. That is no small thing.

Then, if the Warship finds the Pirate, and the Pirate is a Sloop . . . and most Warships are '7'-rated for combat - the Warship still has a decent chance of creating Damage to the Pirate (even if the Pirate wins).

Yes, sending a Warship against a Pirate is a chancey thing, but certainly nowhere near the uselessness that some players describe . . . wherein i think the players simply do not understand what the game purpose of warships is. (It is to slow the pirates down in terms of what they can accomplish, not kill them).

It helps to realize that if the Pirate escapes the Warship (the latter doesn't find the former), the Pirate must discontinue - and lose - the action he was attempting. If he beats off the warship he can continue with his action, but at the cost of Damage.

HOWEVER, in addition to allowing the AP Player who is using the Warship to use an Event Card with a Numerical number of Action Points (not the ones that refer to the Pirate's Initiative Rating) to the Warship's Combat dieroll - NOT its Speed - I suggest that the AP/Warship Player receive Notoriety Points equal to the number of Damage Hits he inflicts on the Pirate.

I think is enough within the parameters of what i envision the game to be that, unless we get some feedback that it throws the game askew(I don't see how, but one never knows, do one) to make this pendingly official. Whatever that means.

And none of this applies to KC, who are strong enough.

As usual, comments invited.

RHB


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Alfonso Velasco
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Quote:
The thing of it is, if the Pirate escapes he has to discontinue the Action that brought in the Warship . . . which, even in "winning" the pirate loses. That is no small thing.

Yes, sending a Warship against a Pirate is a chancey thing, but certainly nowhere near the uselessness that some players describe . . . wherein i think the players simply do not understand what the game purpose of warships is. (It is to slow the pirates down in terms of what they can accomplish, not kill them).


Slow the pirates down? But 6.46 says:"If the Pirate’s total is higher than the Warship’s total the Pirate suffers
1 Combat Damage Hit and the Warship is removed from play.
The Pirate MUST now proceed with whatever Action he was about to
undertake. The Pirate gains Notoriety Points equal to the Warship’s
Combat rating"

Is it an errata?
 
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BROG wrote:
The thing of it is, if the Pirate escapes he has to discontinue the Action that brought in the Warship . . . which, even in "winning" the pirate loses. That is no small thing.

!

I completely missed this aspect--6.45 only states:

6.45 wrote:
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).

Where does it say that the pirate's action is forfeit in escaping a warship without combat? I see in 6.46 if you lose a battle with a warship your Pirate Action is canceled...

BROG wrote:
It is to slow the pirates down in terms of what they can accomplish, not kill them).

The purpose of a WARship isn't to sink other ships?

BROG wrote:
I suggest that the AP/Warship Player receive Notoriety Points equal to the number of Damage Hits he inflicts on the Pirate.

That sounds like a good idea... But no extra notoriety for sinking a pirate? I mean, even one of those peaceful warships must get lucky with all of those heavy guns once in a while, right? I like having a chance of NP for warships, for sure, as it encourages players to try sending them out, where they might be reticent to provide an opportunity for the Active Pirate to score.
 
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Steffan O'Sullivan
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BROG wrote:
Yes, sending a Warship against a Pirate is a chancey thing, but certainly nowhere near the uselessness that some players describe . . . wherein i think the players simply do not understand what the game purpose of warships is. (It is to slow the pirates down in terms of what they can accomplish, not kill them).

Well, yes, but you have to listen to the audience. If enough of them complain that it feels useless to them, you have to take that seriously. (I'm not one of them, mind you, but just quoting a general rule of the entertainment business, of which game design is a subset.)

Quote:
HOWEVER, in addition to allowing the AP Player who is using the Warship to use an Event Card with a Numerical number of Action Points (not the ones that refer to the Pirate's Initiative Rating) to the Warship's Combat dieroll - NOT its Speed - I suggest that the AP/Warship Player receive Notoriety Points equal to the number of Damage Hits he inflicts on the Pirate.

I like this!
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Richard Berg
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"Slow the pirates down?"

Metaphysically, not literally. It slows the player down . . . how does that sound?

And yes, if the pirate escapes the warship - the latter doesn't find him - he forfeits his action. (After all, he does have to sail away and hide . . . .)

I think these new "additions' to the mechanics not only help define how useful warships can be, but also help play tension/decisions.

HOWEVER, I do have to think about the overuse of Warships to chase pirates away . . . and I may want to consider allowing the pirate to NOT run away from the Warship and turn and fight. That's a small change that could also be interesting, game-wise . . .

RHB


 
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David Klempa
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This should be corrected to say the AP/Warship player receives Victory Points equal to the number of damage hits he inflicts on the Pirate.
 
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David Klempa
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BROG wrote:
HOWEVER, I do have to think about the overuse of Warships to chase pirates away . . . and I may want to consider allowing the pirate to NOT run away from the Warship and turn and fight. That's a small change that could also be interesting, game-wise . . .

RHB

I think that would put us right back where we started.

The 'problem' as I perceive it, is that right now, Pirates want to be found be warships, which doesn't sound historical.

As you pointed out, most warships have combat ratings of 7 or less.
If I remember correctly, most pirates (21/23) have Ability ratings of 3 or more. This means a Pirate Sloop will have a combat rating of 8+ (and honestly, how many players start their pirates in sloops?)
So the 'found' pirate has an excellent chance of scoring 4+ NP and gets to (must) continue with the Loot action he wanted to do in the first place; for the price of one combat hit.
 
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BROG wrote:
And yes, if the pirate escapes the warship - the latter doesn't find him - he forfeits his action. (After all, he does have to sail away and hide . . . .)

Where is this in the rules, then? It makes perfect sense, and makes the warships more useful, but I wanna have somethin' in my hand to show the guys I play with.
 
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Richard Berg
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Dave Klempa wrote:
BROG wrote:
HOWEVER, I do have to think about the overuse of Warships to chase pirates away . . . and I may want to consider allowing the pirate to NOT run away from the Warship and turn and fight. That's a small change that could also be interesting, game-wise . . .

RHB

I think that would put us right back where we started.

The 'problem' as I perceive it, is that right now, Pirates want to be found be warships, which doesn't sound historical.

As you pointed out, most warships have combat ratings of 7 or less.
If I remember correctly, most pirates (21/23) have Ability ratings of 3 or more. This means a Pirate Sloop will have a combat rating of 8+ (and honestly, how many players start their pirates in sloops?)
So the 'found' pirate has an excellent chance of scoring 4+ NP and gets to (must) continue with the Loot action he wanted to do in the first place; for the price of one combat hit.



Perhaps . . . perhaps not. I[m not sure that many pirates want to be found by a 7-rated Warship (or higher, and most are at that level) especially if he who uses that Warship may add to the rating by playing a 2-point card to help out.

I think it is worth seeing how the players find this to be . . .

"I wanna have somethin' in my hand to show the guys I play with."

Try a gun. Want my phone #?


RHB
 
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BROG wrote:
"I wanna have somethin' in my hand to show the guys I play with."

Try a gun. Want my phone #?



So I'll tell 'em it's a post-release change, then. Coolio.
 
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Aram Schvey
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So if the pirate [EDIT: outruns] the warship, he cannot pursue the action? And now you get VPs or notoriety from beating the pirate with the warship? Those are changes from the rulebook, yes? Richard -- are these actual rule change or just some musings? I ask because my copy of the game arrived yesterday.

I'm happy that the designer is engaged on the Geek and is responsive to questions. But I do think it's important to embrace a unified set of rules for the game, so I do think the previous question about wanting something in writing is legit. People want to know what the rules are. House rules are fine, but everyone understands that they represent a departure from the (clearly understood) actual rules. Here, the actual rules in this game are apparently in flux only weeks after the release. I find this somewhat disconcerting -- I'm not sure what this says about playtesting...
 
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Jorge Arroyo
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Well, I guess when the changes become official, they'll update the rules...

I like the change ( as I didn't see it in the rules) that makes pirates lose the action when they run away. We actually discussed it in our first game.

Being able to turn and fight makes sense thematically, but I'm not sure about how will it change the game if it's true people want their pirates to be found, although it's true that with the new card play option maybe pirates will stop wanting to be found... That'll be a good thing

We'll give these a try next time we play...

-Jorge
 
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Richard Berg
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"So if the pirate beats the warship, he cannot pursue the action?"

Yes he can . . .

RHB
 
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Aram Schvey
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Quote:
"So if the pirate beats the warship, he cannot pursue the action?"

Yes he can . . .

RHB


Oops -- I meant "outruns," not "beats." Post above edited accordingly.
 
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Richard Berg
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Ifthe pirate "outruns" the warship he cannot resume the action . . . he has sailed elsewhere.

RHB
 
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Thomas Fredericks
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Does this apply to KCs too?
 
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Jose Luis Rodriguez Mena
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Quote:
BROG wrote:
"I wanna have somethin' in my hand to show the guys I play with."

Try a gun. Want my phone #?



So I'll tell 'em it's a post-release change, then. Coolio.




I think the real problem here is the whole game, not only warships.
I've read the rules and all of this posts from you and it makes me wondering if this game was really playtested... Maybe the playtesters were threatened with the same gun Richard says...
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Jorge Arroyo
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jose633 wrote:
I think the real problem here is the whole game, not only warships.
I've read the rules and all of this posts from you and it makes me wondering if this game was really playtested... Maybe the playtesters were threatened with the same gun Richard says...


Have you actually played the game????!!

-Jorge
 
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Jose Luis Rodriguez Mena
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maka wrote:
jose633 wrote:
I think the real problem here is the whole game, not only warships.
I've read the rules and all of this posts from you and it makes me wondering if this game was really playtested... Maybe the playtesters were threatened with the same gun Richard says...


Have you actually played the game????!!

-Jorge


Yes, of course. And I had to wrote a thousand house rules...
 
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Aram Schvey
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Jose --

I can't tell if you're being facetious or not. If you're serious, what problems did you discover? And what house rules did you implement?
 
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I've read the rules and all of this posts from you and it makes me wondering if this game was really playtested...


It was. Quite a lot. By people who worked hard.

Do not, under any circumstances, insult them. Me, you can insult all you want.
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Jorge Arroyo
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Anyway, I think it's pretty rude to come to a thread where people are discussing ways to fix a very specific problem with the game (even though many don't even consider it a problem) with off topic complains and rude comments. How many designers do you see discussing and helping players learn and play a new game ona DAILY BASIS for weeks after the initial release? Not many, I assure you.

If you have something to say about the game, write a review, a comment, or a session report, but posting in every other thread with complains about the game that don't have anything to do with the discussion is just trolling.

Cheers,

-Jorge
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Douglas S
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maka wrote:
How many designers do you see discussing and helping players learn and play a new game ona DAILY BASIS for weeks after the initial release? Not many, I assure you.


Agreed! Thanks NEIL and RICHARD! - a lot!
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Neil Randall
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Thanks, but as I've said elsewhere, I'd rather I didn't have to provide any help at all, and that the game was crystal clear and unambiguous in all points with no issues about whether or not something worked. Everybody involves agrees that such would be the best possible scenario. Still, thanks.
 
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Neil Randall
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Quote:
So if the pirate [EDIT: outruns] the warship, he cannot pursue the action? And now you get VPs or notoriety from beating the pirate with the warship? Those are changes from the rulebook, yes?


Yes, but it's not official yet, which is why it hasn't been posted as such. We're considering exactly what we want to do so solve the perceived problem that warships and KCs aren't powerful enough.

As soon as we have an official change, I will post it to a new Rules posting and update the Q&A.

 
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