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Stew art Supporting Member of TMP11 Aug 2017 8:47 p.m. PST

Hey All!

I would of posted this on the ODGW forums but it won't let me start a topic…

So I'v been reading the rules and have some questions about things that I can't quite wrap my head around…
If you don't mind.

Pumps? I'm not sure on this process. The only reference I can find is in the extended tasks section of Man the Pumps, and told that they have to be manned when a bold box is checked. Have many crew to man? I get it that if not manned then a hull box floods. If manned does the flooding go down?

When you lose a mast / sail that is not deployed, such as the fore T'gallant, which is not deployed under battle sail, I imagine then after the wreckage is cleared, there is no decrease in MFs? Seems like sometimes the ship will take damage but it doesn't really affect anything.

-also, if a mast falls during a tactical phase in a game turn (because it gets shot off!), in the command phase: can you cut free immediately with one crew factor, or do you need to assign the crew factor for the next turn's repair phase (meaning that a mast can't be fixed until a turn later).

-nevermind fond the answer on the ODGW forum. Yes, you wait a turn.

-is cutting a fallen mast free a repair action or just and additional task you are doing? For example: can I assign 1 crew to fix 2 rigging and 1 crew to cut the fallen mast? Or does the fallen mast count as the "one other repair" along with the rigging?

-nevermind, found the answer in te ODGW forum. you can do repairs and cut away a mast..

If firing chainshot and the EDR does NOT result in damage to the rigging, then the shot is ignored?

What's the effect of having officers killed? I get if the captain gets killed stuff happens but who care's if the 3rd Lt gets it?

Can ships that are fouled or grappled together still fire broadsides at each other? how bout while the battle on the upper deck goes on?

I'm hoping to play this game soon, and since I'll need to be the rule expert, I'm hoping to get this cleared up.

thanks to anyone in advance who knows the answers…


BrianW11 Aug 2017 11:29 p.m. PST

I'll try and answer some of your questions.

For officers, look at page 1-23 at the third bullet point. An officer should command each boarding party, a boarding party MUST be led by an officer to attack,and not having an officer will give your BP a +1 modifier on the die roll. Also, look at 11.6 where it also says "Attacks can only be made against adjacent deck areas by BPs led by an officer."

Chain shot: look on page 1-14, under Special Ammunition. In my copy, it specifically states: Rigging hits on the cannon damage table are doubled, while Gun and Hull hits have no effect. As I read it, that would be any type of rigging hit, so if you were firing high and rolled a 10, that would be 2 rigging boxes and a yard (which requires a roll on the Spar table).

Pumps: If you look on the repair table, on Chart 2A, the last column is labeled "Hull Box". It takes one game turn, and is successful on 1-6. Presumably, if you can repair enough hull boxes to get out of the flood zone then you don't have to man the pumps. EDIT: Repairing a hull box is not listed on the Deck Log, nor is cutting away wreckage.

I would say that grappled ships cannot fire while there is a boarding action, because the rules don't permit musket volleys into a contested deck area (page 1-20). As for grappled ships firing BEFORE a boarding action starts, I don't see why not.


BrianW11 Aug 2017 11:34 p.m. PST

And the one I missed:
If you lose a sail that is not deployed then you don't lose speed UNLESS you deploy those sails. Example: Your sail speeds are 6/9/12 for battle/easy/full. If you lose a 1 point sail from the easy sail set, you still have 6 points under battle sails, but only 8/11 for easy/full.

Oh, and there is this about cutting away wreckage. It takes one crew factor per mast group. So, whether you lose just the fore topgallant mast or the whole foremast, it only takes one crew factor. IF, though, use lose the fore topgallant and the main topgallant, then that would take two factors.

whitejamest12 Aug 2017 8:39 a.m. PST

I think Brian is definitely on target.

As for pumping, just to clarify when the first bold box is crossed off, you want to start pumping right away. The number of crew needed is found on the extended task table on chart 1A (under list of turn sequence). So for a frigate for example, you need one factor doing that and nothing else, until repairs make it moot.

Pumping just stops the flooding from getting worse and causing additional hull boxes to be crossed off. It won't ever return hull boxes to you. For that you need to assign crew to repair hull. As Brian says, you'll find that on the repair table on chart 2A.

You're right that, once you've cleared the wreckage, losing a mast carrying a sail that you weren't using won't in itself have a noticeable effect, until you change sail sets. But bear in mind that as soon as that fore topgallant mast you didn't care about was shot down, it also caused your main topgallant to be 'sprung'. So even if you didn't care about that sail itself, the loss has temporarily weakened more of your system of rigging. It's never good news.

My impression was that grappled ships could still fire at each other at point blank range (or even another target on the unblocked side. This is from page 1-25:

"Below Decks: While Boarding Parties fight for control of the upper deck, the remainder of the crews below decks continue to man the guns and make repairs. They only move to the upper Deck Areas when a captain orders them to reinforce a BP or form a new BP. Crews can nae advance up a companionway onto an enemy controlled Deck Area."

So if they're still manning the guns I assumed they could still fire. But then they're not participating in boarding parties that are attacking or defending, so you may not have the manpower to keep the guns going.

I thought there was something either in the rules or on the forums talking about the crew not being able to work guns in a contested deck area (which I guess would only happen with upper deck guns), but now I can't find it. Did I imagine that? Maybe I house-ruled this point and forgot…

BrianW12 Aug 2017 11:12 a.m. PST

Thank you for finding that "Below Decks" quote! I could not for the life of me find that, but remembered seeing it somewhere.

EDIT: Yes, I should have mentioned the "sprung" problem as well. I will blame that on the lateness of my reply. Even losing "just" the fore topgallant could very well be what starts a cascading failure in your propulsion. Losing anything springs the one behind it, which means that you then have to roll to see if it fails every turn, until you can repair enough Rigging boxes to get to less than 3 Rigging hits.


Stew art Supporting Member of TMP12 Aug 2017 11:23 a.m. PST

Thank you Gentlemen! that helps a lot.

X number of crew to man the pumps depending on the ship size, stops flooding, repair as usual.

and the other sailing questions as well are firm in my mind.

It took me a read or two through the rules to really et everything down, but I'm really liking what I have read and am excited to try the rules out.

thanks again!

BrianW13 Aug 2017 10:08 a.m. PST

Oh, you're quite welcome. They have become my favorite set of rules for smaller level actions. I wouldn't try and fight Trafalgar with them, but for squadrons (maybe even multiple squadrons) and under they are perfect.

Some parts of the rules are a little vague, so it does take more than one reading to see what they are getting at.

Charlie 1213 Aug 2017 4:28 p.m. PST

Thanks Brian for doing a stellar job weighing in. I would have but real life overtook me.

You're right about the scope. The authors purposely aimed the rules at the small end of the spectrum. There are a lot of good fleet level rules on the market (my fav being Form Line of Battle), but not many that give a good game for the far more common single ship or small squadron actions. And especially the smaller ships (sloops and below).

Charlie 1213 Aug 2017 4:37 p.m. PST

Brian mentioned the cascade effect that using "just" the fore topgallant can lead to.

During a playtest game, we had 2 small (French vs British, 3 ships each) frigate squadrons going at it. I had one of my French frigates lose its fore topgallant mast. Which, while losing speed potential (that I wasn't using) also sprung the main. Well, within 2 turns (and bad die rolls) I had lost the rest of the fore mast, the main mast and the mizzen top mast; all due to the mast being sprung and rigging damage. With a British frigate near to crossing my stern at 50 yds, I struck (like I had a choice!)

Stew art Supporting Member of TMP14 Aug 2017 3:25 p.m. PST

the more that I read (or re=read), the more that I really like the damage system in PC.

These rules are pretty much on the level that I want, small actions with a handful of ships.

BrianW15 Aug 2017 9:23 a.m. PST

Re-reading can help you understand a number of things that aren't apparent at first, that's for sure.

1) Lose 4+ rigging boxes, and you have the possibility of something being sprung (or even losing it on a REALLY bad roll). Once something is sprung, it is a separate roll to see if it keeps standing, and you still have the earlier roll for losing rigging boxes as well.

2) ALL Hull hits are causing flooding, but not until you cross into the blue boxes do you have to really worry about it. I caught this last night while re-reading and highlighting some other stuff.

3) So-called "national doctrines" are baked right into the model. 1,000+ yards and everyone moves together. 1,000-400 yards, windward side moves first. Under 400 yards, roll for initiative each segment. If you're a British player with carronades and higher rate of fire (and, on average better commanders), you want to close quickly. If you're French or Spanish, then not so much.


Stew art Supporting Member of TMP17 Aug 2017 10:11 a.m. PST

While I have everyone's attention…

while re-reading, this jumped out at me; it seems that the command check is taken EVERY turn that the conditions apply. Is that right? For some reason I thought it was only once, and then only when you took more damage.

Dismasted: When does a ship count as being dismasted? (for rigging checks for example). At first I was picturing damage to each and every mast, but now I think it's just when any mast falls.

BrianW17 Aug 2017 4:45 p.m. PST

The way I read the command check rules once you pass the check, you are OK until you take more damage of that type, since the Command Phase is the end of the turn. Page 1-29, 13.3 italics says, "Another Command Check must be made in any Game Turn in which an additional loss o' the same type is taken." As an aside, the bullet point in that section points out that all Hull hits are considered to be flooding hits. It says, "1/3 of a ship's Hull Boxes have been flooded or boats sunk." The dark blue hull boxes mean that the situation is now critical.

I would say dismasted applies when you've lost any complete mast group or everything from the topmasts up on all masts. It's a bit more difficult to put hard fast rules on that, but I would say that any lower mast definitely counts.

Stew art Supporting Member of TMP18 Aug 2017 9:17 a.m. PST

thanks BrianW, you've been super helpful with all my questions on rules and ships.

CmD Check: You know, I reread that part you mentioned last night… I just got confused bc on the w/draw to 500 is says to keep checking….

dismasted: got it!


BrianW18 Aug 2017 11:54 a.m. PST

Oh, you are quite welcome. Napoleonic naval has always been my first love,and my first miniatures were Skytrex ships back in the early 1980s. I'm always happy to help lead someone else astray. :-)

Now I don't normally jump into "which ruleset is best for me" questions, because I think that can sometimes be an almost personal decision. What is important to me as a long-time naval gamer might not be as important to someone who just wants to push boats occasionally. Once someone has decided on a set of rules, I'm more than happy to answers questions if I can help.

EDIT: Yeah, on the withdrawal thing you can continue to engage from long range, but it won't be very effective as you can see from looking at the cannon charts. If you want to take a command check and get back into the knife fight you can, but there's always the risk of making things worse.

Charlie 1218 Aug 2017 6:13 p.m. PST

Dismasted: When does a ship count as being dismasted? (for rigging checks for example). At first I was picturing damage to each and every mast, but now I think it's just when any mast falls.

Its when ANY mast falls. That includes the tops and top-gallants.

BrianW18 Aug 2017 9:53 p.m. PST

Even just a topgallant counts as dismasted? OK. It's just that when I hear that word I think that an entire mast has gone by the board.

Thanks Charlie, that's good to know as I am running a game this weekend and that could be important.

Stew art Supporting Member of TMP19 Aug 2017 1:45 p.m. PST

thanks for the additional feedback Charlie.

I'm liking these rules more and more. planning on playing them soon.

BrianW, save me a seat! : )

BrianW19 Aug 2017 2:25 p.m. PST

Absolutely! I'm going to run a training game (not the same scenario) on Friday morning. That will just be a "line up and let 'em go" type scenario for people who want to learn the basic rules.

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