- Sail under one of four flags, fighting for three different nations as a Privateer or go full Pirate and sail under the Jolly Roger. Capture ports and rivals their name, or betray them and change sides half way through the game. (English, French, Spanish, and the Pirate)
- Captain one of nine different ship types, all with different tactical setups, four of which are unique that you can only acquire by defeating a legendary pirate.
- Take control of your ship, by planning out your cargo hold.
Plan out how many rations, cannon balls, grapeshot, and chain-shot you
are going to need. Will you sacrifice ammo or rations to take on more
loot as you sail across the Caribbean, or will you sacrifice treasure for security?
- Battle rival players, and when you best them in combat, capture them so that you can ransom them back to their faction.
- Raid ports and take them over for your faction, gaining a strategic advantage over trade good prices. ship upgrade locations, and an rivals ability to resupply on rations.
- Sell trade goods you acquire in your adventures to ports for prices that change in a fluctuating economy.
The object of the game is each player is trying to become not just famous, but a true legend of the Caribbean. Joining factions, taking ports, and selling trade goods are all just a means to that end.
Whether you choose to side with a faction, or go rogue as a pirate, every other player on the board is a rival pirate or privateer. While you may choose to help them at times, ignore their plight at others, or even take them head on, in the end you are willing to do whatever it takes to come out on top.
When I was making the game board I wanted players to feel like they were truly sailing the Caribbean, so the map has ample spacing between the ports as well as the event markers. There are still key points however where a player might set up an ambush or cut off their opponent.
There are three key elements to the board, the first being the Ports which you will notice are blue at the moment. Being seven in total, game play will begin with two english, two french, two spanish, and one pirate port. As play continues you are able to capture ports for your faction, giving you an advantage over trade good prices and ship upgrades once players have enough fame that they are unable to dock in enemy ports. The next thing you will notice is the bottom left corner of the map has seven slots, these are attached to the seven ports and are where the market cards will reside during game play. They tell you how much you can sell a trade good there for, as well as what ship upgrades are available at that port. The last thing I'd like to cover are the black hexagons with a skull in the middle of them, those are event markers, and this is where event tokens will be placed. Each player is racing across the map to reach these before their rivals. They gain one point of fame for reaching it, and then they flip the event token over and it will either say "Event Card" or it will be a ship from one of the four factions that you may choose to attack.
When all Event tokens have been taken off the board they are shuffled and then replaced, the market cards also get shuffled and dealt back out to the ports, this is what keeps the economy fluctuating.
There are five different base types of ships, each geared towards a different style of play. On top of that, you also receive perks from your faction, a First Mate, and each ship has two upgrade slots that allow you to further customize it towards your style of game play. The Unique ships, that you can obtain by defeating one of the four legendary pirates, have an advantage of one extra upgrade slot, making them more versatile.
The above is the ship all players will start with. Each player will start with a Sloop, the far left corner showing the stats on the ship. This ship has 50 health, a move speed of 5, 60 crew, and 6d6 cannons. The bar along the top is the ships health bar, the bar on the left hand side is the crew health bar, both use markers to keep track of your current ship health and number of crew. To the far right, you will see your First Mate card slot, and this is where you will place your First Mate. On the bottom left, your two upgrade slots, which is next to your cargo hold slots on the bottom right.
Now what I mean by style of play is that in combat you have a range of options. You are able to fire one of three types of shot, allowing you to either damage the ship, target the crew, or take down a mast so as to gain the advantage of speed over them, You are even able to board your enemy and fight hand to hand against them. Should your enemy prove to be too difficult you are able to attempt escape, but if the damage's you have received have hindered your speed, you might be seeing Davy Jones sooner than you thought.
A few more examples of different ship classes
My artistic plans for the Ship cards
I'm planning on having a different picture for each ship type, all in different settings. The three legendary ships are each going to have a unique portrait. The rest of the card, which is currently shown, is going to have more flare to it. I'd like to have the cargo hold have a wood background, similar to what you would find below deck of an actual ship. The ship and crew health bars will have a nicer border, making them more pronounced to which is which specifically, along with nicer images on the stats section in the upper left corner.
At the moment I am using small paper ships for the player markers, however I want the final product to have ships more closely related to the game Pirates of the Spanish Main, which for those of you unfamiliar with that game, they had very nice ship miniatures. I do not however, want anything to have to be assembled, so they will merely resemble that style and not necessarily mimic it. I know that many people want more games to use their PotSM ships in though, so I will try to keep the sizing around the same so that they are able to use them with my game.
First Mates give you a unique positive, or negative, perk while playing the game. At the beginning of the game, each player gets to choose a First Mate card at random with the option of finding or hiring a new one down the road.
The three cards above are examples of how your First Mate can be a help or hinder, but fear not because there are three ways to obtain a new one should the one you draw prove less than useful. You can either choose to hire a new one in port, there is the chance that you could find one from an Event card, or should you fancy another players First Mate then you could even choose to go and acquire his, by force of course.
My artistic plans for the First Mate cards
The First Mate cards are available for a select few pledges to become the face of, and what we are going to do is work with those pledges to make a pirate likeness of them. Those pledges will be able to give us any ideas they have for their First Mate, and then we will send out the resulting artwork to be seen and evaluated by the rest of the community. How we are going to give those pledges what they paid for, as well as allow other pledges to vote on the artwork, is I am going to take the key pieces of what the First Mate pledge desired and express those desires to the rest of the community.
I am going to offer as a pledge tier the chance for fifteen people to be the face of a First Mate, they will send us a picture of the pose they desire (subject to approval) and we will take their face and pose, then garb them in the finest pirate attire.
The five basic ship classes have two upgrade slots that further allows you to expand on your style of play, while the legendary ships have the advantage of three upgrade slots.
Whether you favor speed, the ability to take your enemies down by cutlass, or a higher chance of sinking your enemies by cannon these upgrades help with your offense. But perhaps you prefer a solid defense as the right offense? Then upgrading your hull to be damage resistant, or buying your crew pistols to shoot down crews attempting to board your ship are the route to take. These five examples are the available upgrades spread out for purchase across the map, there are also 2nd tier versions of each of these that further upgrade the abilities of the basic 1st tier shown here.
In the game you are able to obtain five different types of trade goods during your time at sea, which can then be sold at ports for some extra coin. The game board has seven different ports, each of which will have a market card attached to that specific port. You can choose to bring it to the nearest port, hoping to off load it before another players eye is caught by your cargo hold or choose to risk it and try to bring it to the port where it will be most valuable to earn some extra pieces of eight.
The market cards allowed me not only to create a fluctuating economy by having them change which port they are attached to based off of a key event in the game, but they also allowed me to add in strategic value when capturing ports for your faction. On the bottom of each card, you will notice two things that are not trade goods. Those, are examples of the different types of upgrades available for each ship. Later in the game, as your Captain gains fame he will be unable to enter enemy ports. As the upgrades are scattered amongst the ports on these market cards, controlling certain ports can prevent other players of different factions from obtaining the upgrades they want.
My artistic plans for the Market cards
These will be simple, a wooden background with a frame around it. Something like a public posting board with a rustic, weathered, pirate look to it.
During the course of the game players will be racing across the board to twenty different locations, and each time they arrive at one before another player they will gain one fame as well as either pulling an encounter card or an enemy ship card. Should they pull an event card, there are many different scenarios you could encounter.
Encounter cards, as demonstrated above, can be anything from a choice you make that can be rewarding in one of several ways, to something negative. You may even encounter a sea serpent, or a merchant unable to afford port fees so he offers to sell you silk at a reduced price.
My artistic plans for the Event cards
Some of these will have specific images, while others will be more plain. I am aiming for the more interesting or specific event cards to have additional art work as a background, such as maybe the sea serpent or a sunny day on the sea for something like the "Weather is fair and your crew content".
Fame in the game is managed by tokens, and as your pirate becomes more famous they gain benefits, however the game also becomes more difficult as well. Player's with one of the three nations will find that they get ransomed sooner by their nation, but they also will be unable to enter enemy ports. This will make port control a strategic advantage later in the game, aside from the advantage of controlling upgrades available at different ports. Pirate's will gain added benefits like reduced times when taking over ports, and they will have an easier time escaping from enemies that have capture them.
Fame is also the deciding factor on winning the game, the first player to reach twenty five fame may start killing off his rivals instead of merely capturing them.
- 1 Game board
- 1 Rule book
- 9 Dice
- 44 Ship cards ( 5 classes, 4 unique)
- 15 First Mate cards
- 7 Market Cards
- 120 Event cards
- 50 Loot cards
- 300 Pieces of Eight
- Eight plastic ship tokens
- And several hundred pog's that will be the trade goods, cannon ammo, and rations!
This campaign is about more than making a product to me, this is about a dream. As a kid I was always wrapped up in books, video games, and especially board games. I hope to take this project and use it as a spring board to launch a company that will continue to put out games of a quality that I will be proud to attach my name to.
There are two parts to what the funding received will go towards, the first being the obvious and most common here on Kickstarter, which will be the production of my game. The second is going to be the art work that I want for the game, the art work that will bring this game right off the board and into your living rooms. As far as the art work goes, while I have an idea in my head as to what I want, I also would like the opinions of all the people willing to help me realize my dream. That's why every pledge tier, no matter how small, is going to have a say in the polls that I will send out as the art work is completed. Like it, love it, or hate it I want to know what everyone's opinion is so that I can make the best game possible.
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The risk here for me is going to be the artwork and shipping dates, while I have given myself ample time so as to be able to deliver on my artistic promises, I am also allowing everyone to have a vote on the artwork as I go. That way if the majority of the voters do not like or agree with the rendering, I can send out another poll asking what they would like changed. While this is how I want to go about the artwork, the fact of the matter is that if me and the rest of you are not initially on the same page it may delay me slightly longer than I planned. While I will do my best to avoid this, it is still an unpredictable hurdle that may occur. But I have put a lot of thought and effort into this game, and I think that you all will love what I have in mind.
"Squawking away, you are always there for moral support, occasionally plucking some eyes out along the way, you support the cause!"
At this pledge level I thank you for your interest and I offer you the chance to be involved in the polls that will be sent out after being successfully funded that will allow you to vote on the artwork as it is finished.
"The backbone of any Captain, you stay strong in the face of danger and always lend your sword to the man on your left and right, You are the backbone of the cause!"
Your likeness shall be immortalized as a First Mate of the Caribbean, meaning that you will get to send us a photo and we will use your likeness as the background of the First Mate card. We will deck you out in the finest pirate attire, and work with you to achieve the look you desire. you will also receive the standard game edition as well as have a say in the polls for the artwork as it is created.
"It's by the sweat of your brow that this golden age of piracy was built upon, you are the wind in the sails and the wood of the hull. You are the heart of the cause!"
At this pledge tier you will be offered the chance to help with the design of one of the basic ship classes. Whether you want a tropical background with a black ship trimmed in gold, or perhaps a weathered and beaten ship pushing through a hurricane I will work to see your vision for that ship through. You will also receive the standard game edition, as well as have a vote in the rest of the artwork with the rest of the pledge tiers.
"Weathered, salty, and experienced you are the talk of taverns and the whispers of superstitious sailors. They say you aren't human, that you are born of the sea, they say that you ARE the cause!"
This pledge tier is for one pledge to be the model for the fourth legendary pirate. He will bear your resemblance, and you will also have a hand in the creation of your legendary ship. Choosing it's design as well as it's stats (subject to approval). Your legendary captain will be exclusive to all Kickstarter sets, making you a limited edition.
At this level you will also receive the standard game edition, as well as have a vote in the rest of the artwork with the other pledge tiers.