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Thread: Pirates & Privateers

  1. #1
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    Default Pirates & Privateers

    Now that I have my Kickstarter copy (and extras) I'm interested in ordering additional ships to mod for use as pirates and/or privateers. Unfortunately most of my historical info points to the pre-Napoleonic period (early to mid 1600s) for piracy and privateers.

    My historical knowledge of this era is fairly limited. Are there any ships from the current release wave that would make good privateers or conversion to a pirate vessel?

    :angry:

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    Historically, no. For fun, yes! You could pretty much use all of the frigates painted up as pirates to play against them selves. You could even use the current SoLs as the huge treasure ships most pirates dreamed about catching. Cutting the number of guns down for them might be in order, but could still be done for fun.

    The pirates most of us love from the movies (and not just latest ones) have less to do with history and more to do with being fun anyways.
    Quote Originally Posted by Cool Breeze View Post
    I just didn't want to be seen as the, "Thread Pirate Roberts" and get too far off topic.

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    An excellent idea from 1SL there, ideal for fun parti and tournament games at shows and conventions ;happy:

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    I'm actually thinking about repainting the pre-production ships I have as pirates for games with the kiddos.
    Quote Originally Posted by Cool Breeze View Post
    I just didn't want to be seen as the, "Thread Pirate Roberts" and get too far off topic.

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    LOL. I'm already working on the "Black Pearl", and it was your idea Keith from another thread. Not ready for prime time yet though.

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    The Golden Age of Piracy in the Caribbean, with the likes of Ed Thatch (Blackbeard), Charles Vane, and "Black Bart" Roberts (although he was mostly off Africa) "ended" within a few years of 1720. By that point, pirates were so actively hunted down in the Caribbean that they moved elsewhere. The corsairs of the Barbary Coast in the Mediterranean were active much longer, but I'm not sure any of them sailed in frigate-sized ships. Ideally, we'll get some vessels dated about 100 years earlier than we have now, for the optimal choices for piratical activity. Then again, the pirates prior to 1700 often had much larger vessels. It wasn't uncommon for those buccaneers to be sailing in frigates of 32+ guns.

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    Not sure about the scales, but Candlewick Press used to have a line of ship figurines to go with their Pirateology book line that would give a physical mini to put on a table... so from there it'd just be a matter of custom logs.

    IIRC they did the Queen Anne's Revenge, the Royal Fortune, the William, the Bold Adventure, a generic Barbary galley and a generic Chinese junk.

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    This is a neat idea. I am introducing some 7th graders to WGF on Friday evening, and have been wondering how to do so with SoG. Having a pirate ship, I believe, would be just the thing.

    Well, I just grabbed Pirate: The Golden Age (Osprey) off the shelf. Time for a quick reread here in the near future.

    I see some interesting scenario-specific rule possibilities. I imagine a pirate ship would behave differently when fighting a merchant and a man-of-war, in the former not wanting to cause too much damage.

  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by The Royal Hajj View Post
    I'm actually thinking about repainting the pre-production ships I have as pirates for games with the kiddos.
    For games with younger generation players it might be worth thinking about using some of themodels from Peter Pig's 1/450 "Pieces of Eight" range. They need assembling and painting but they are very quick simple to put together and complete, plus they are incredibly rugged so they are ideal for younger hands (and participation games)

  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by 7eat51 View Post
    I see some interesting scenario-specific rule possibilities. I imagine a pirate ship would behave differently when fighting a merchant and a man-of-war, in the former not wanting to cause too much damage.
    Grapeshot.

  11. #11

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    Quote Originally Posted by Andy Blozinski View Post
    Grapeshot.
    Combined with a high degree of "leggit"!

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    Historically speaking, pirates rarely actually fought for a prize if it wasn't escorted. Merchantmen in the early to mid 1700s and later often had very little more than 20 sailors aboard. When a pirate sloop or schooner was easily packed with 80+ men, let alone the crews of larger pirate vessels, there wasn't much merchants could pull off. When a ship hoisted a black flag, it was often all that was needed to make ships surrender. Of course, that doesn't make for much fun in a naval game.

    That would be an interesting goal involving pirates... Do as little damage as possible to make the vessel surrender.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Shoot@Me View Post
    The corsairs of the Barbary Coast in the Mediterranean were active much longer, but I'm not sure any of them sailed in frigate-sized ships.
    Depends on how you define "frigate-sized" -- some of the xebecs and such were up around 30 guns. Smaller ships were preferred for obvious reasons (fewer crew to ride herd on; able to hide in places bigger ships couldn't; etc.).

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    Quote Originally Posted by csadn View Post
    Depends on how you define "frigate-sized" -- some of the xebecs and such were up around 30 guns. Smaller ships were preferred for obvious reasons (fewer crew to ride herd on; able to hide in places bigger ships couldn't; etc.).
    Thank you, I had to look it up. It does appear there were Xebecs with as many as 32 guns, and there were even fully square-rigged "xebec-frigates" used by European nations. I am simply not as familiar with the Mediterranean and the Barbary pirates as I am with piracy in the Caribbean.

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    Of course tge great thing about xebecs is that they are generally fantastically beautiful ships. If Ares were to release one or two I'm sure they would prove rather popular

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    Quote Originally Posted by David Manley View Post
    Of course tge great thing about xebecs is that they are generally fantastically beautiful ships. If Ares were to release one or two I'm sure they would prove rather popular
    As David says:

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    A xebec was a product of its environment -- Med winds are flaky, and there's (relatively) not a lot of maneuvering room; so in order to take best advantage of what wind there is, one needs fore-and-aft rigging, even on "big" ships. However, outside the Med, the xebec isn't nearly as brilliant -- it's just another sloop- or schooner-sized unit. So I don't see the xebec as being a huge seller, unless there's a huge untapped market for "Barbary Wars" small-unit actions.

  18. #18

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    Quote Originally Posted by csadn View Post
    A xebec was a product of its environment -- Med winds are flaky, and there's (relatively) not a lot of maneuvering room; so in order to take best advantage of what wind there is, one needs fore-and-aft rigging, even on "big" ships. However, outside the Med, the xebec isn't nearly as brilliant -- it's just another sloop- or schooner-sized unit. So I don't see the xebec as being a huge seller, unless there's a huge untapped market for "Barbary Wars" small-unit actions.
    Which there probably is, given the extensive US involvement

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    Quote Originally Posted by David Manley View Post
    Which there probably is, given the extensive US involvement
    I'm not so sure -- most people are, tragically, ignorant of the fact the US's first overseas war involved Fighting Islamic Terrorist Hijackers....

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    "The US Military: Cleaning up the Rest of the World's Problems since 1803." LOL

  21. #21

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    Quote Originally Posted by csadn View Post
    I'm not so sure -- most people are, tragically, ignorant of the fact the US's first overseas war involved Fighting Islamic Terrorist Hijackers....
    I'm going to regret this no doubt, but I hardly think the Barbary Wars are in any way relevent to the current world situation. They were pirates who plundered ships and sold people into slavery for wealth. This is essentially what the western world had been doing for centuries at the time anyway, that is, plundering each other's ships, enslaving populations up and down the West African coast and slaughtering Christians of the "wrong" denomination (specficially but not exclusively, England and Spain in their wars). The modern concept of terrorist hijackers of any religion is completely misplaced in this context.

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    Back to the ships please gentlemen.
    Quote Originally Posted by Cool Breeze View Post
    I just didn't want to be seen as the, "Thread Pirate Roberts" and get too far off topic.

  23. #23

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    Quote Originally Posted by Diamondback View Post
    Not sure about the scales, but Candlewick Press used to have a line of ship figurines to go with their Pirateology book line that would give a physical mini to put on a table... so from there it'd just be a matter of custom logs.

    IIRC they did the Queen Anne's Revenge, the Royal Fortune, the William, the Bold Adventure, a generic Barbary galley and a generic Chinese junk.
    Funny this just came up on The Miniatures Page also: http://theminiaturespage.com/boards/msg.mv?id=333500

    You can still acquire some of the ships and figures on Ebay, Amazon and elsewhere: http://www.ebay.com/itm/Pirateology-...item35c0b88d6d

  24. #24

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    Quote Originally Posted by Nightmoss View Post
    Funny this just came up on The Miniatures Page also: http://theminiaturespage.com/boards/msg.mv?id=333500

    You can still acquire some of the ships and figures on Ebay, Amazon and elsewhere: http://www.ebay.com/itm/Pirateology-...item35c0b88d6d
    Says it's 3" tall. That makes it a bit huge in scale.

  25. #25

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    Quote Originally Posted by Andy Blozinski View Post
    Says it's 3" tall. That makes it a bit huge in scale.
    Oh, definitely a different scale. It looks like this might be aimed at a 1/600 fleet from The Miniatures Page posting?

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    Actually I think they were meant as toys with no specific scale. It should also be noted they're also almost full-hull, and would need a razor-saw at the waterline for gaming.

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    They are indeed toys, not quite full hull and way too big for SGN games. I have two of the Barbary Pirate and Chinese Junk models that I cut down to use with my 1/450 Peter Pig pirate and privateer collection. They need a bit of paintwork but work fine with the larger scale models

  28. #28

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    Here's an example of the pirate......

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  29. #29

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    Quote Originally Posted by David Manley View Post
    Here's an example of the pirate......
    They do look fine, but I sure don't need another ship scale to be sucking me in. I have enough with 1/1000, 1/1200 and the 1/300 Wasp I haven't touch in months!

  30. #30

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    LOL, I'm currently working on ships and boats for various periods in 1/6000, 1/3000, 1/1800, 1/1200, 1/1000, 1/700, 1/600, 1/450, 1/300 and 1/100

    EDIT Oh, and 1:1 of course
    Last edited by David Manley; 01-25-2014 at 13:51.

  31. #31

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    Quote Originally Posted by David Manley View Post
    LOL, I'm currently working on ships and boats for various periods in 1/6000, 1/3000, 1/1800, 1/1200, 1/1000, 1/700, 1/600, 1/450, 1/300 and 1/100

    EDIT Oh, and 1:1 of course
    That's understandable because you actually make use of the ships for gaming. I, on the other hand, can't justify the expansion of stuff because my actual gaming time is pretty limited. I'm enjoying the ships (Langton's and Ares) because they look great even if I don't use them for play.

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    Offhand silly question, to you Gentlemen of Note; what scale are the SOG:N ships?

  33. #33

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bionic Wookie View Post
    Offhand silly question, to you Gentlemen of Note; what scale are the SOG:N ships?
    1/1000

  34. #34
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    Crap! I was hoping they would be same scale to my Langton and GHQ ships. Thanks gentlemen!

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    Quote Originally Posted by David Manley View Post
    Here's an example of the pirate......
    That's a lovely ship, David. I assume it is close to twice the size of an Ares ship?

    Quote Originally Posted by Bionic Wookie View Post
    Crap! I was hoping they would be same scale to my Langton and GHQ ships. Thanks gentlemen!
    Some folks have expressed that the scale difference will not seem too pronounced once on the table at several feet away. We used Pirates of the Spanish Main ships for merchants during a demo game last October to good effect.

  36. #36

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bionic Wookie View Post
    Crap! I was hoping they would be same scale to my Langton and GHQ ships. Thanks gentlemen!
    So did we

    And originally they were

  37. #37

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    Quote Originally Posted by 7eat51 View Post
    That's a lovely ship, David. I assume it is close to twice the size of an Ares ship?
    At least, probably 3 times. i use them with my 1/450 but it is overscale

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    Here is an interesting article about Blackbeard that was linked from TMP. Nice article. Also mentioned another upcoming pirate TV series on NBC called "Crossbones".

    http://www.smithsonianmag.com/histor...180949440/?all

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