|That's HMS Terpsichore in the middle of this dance.|
The wind's blowing bottom to top....
Sadly, Gary, who's running our 100 Days Black Powder campaign, is busy discovering the joys of parenthood, specifically the bit where your kids give you their viruses, so at about an hour's notice I got to run some Sails of Glory.
We went for a pretty basic 2 on 2 from the starter box, the French (Rich and Dan) having the Courageuse and the Genereux, and the British (Carl and Dale) HMS Vanguard and HMS Terpsichore. Dale rapidly proved he should be let nowhere near anything involving sailing and the wind, as the Terpsichore found herself in irons, bow into the wind, then collided with the Vanguard, and then in rather rapid succession was broadsided, then simultaneously boarded and raked stem to stern by the French. Meanwhile, Carl managed to survive the collision (having the bigger ship!), and by dint of some smarter manoeuvring and being the only Captain never to get caught bow-to-wind, managed to sail to safety back off the British edge of the table.
Initial impressions? Great fun. I'd reckon a second game would be ample to get comfortable with the rules. You do, though, need a fair amount of peripheral table space for the ship logs/counter storage. Every time I found myself thinking 'I wonder if the rules cover...' I found out they did. :D I'd have liked more than 30 mins and a couple of YouTube gameplay videos worth of preparation, and the folks on the Anchorage forum are dead right on two points:
- it's not worth it unless you play the advanced rules (special damage, crew actions etc)
- the rulebook layout is NOT conducive to playing the advanced rules :D
The forum has a downloadable reference sheet [you'll need a forum login] with turn order and page numbers, and this is utterly invaluable and makes the advanced rules much easier to follow, as log as you read it through a couple of times, and then follow it step by step! As you can guess, we didn't for the first few turns :D