Roleplaying on the

High Seas
FJGaming
-the roleplaying game
Table of Contents
Preface................................................. 2
What you need........................................... 2
Game terms................................................ 2
Credíts........................................................ 2
Introduction..........................................3
What ís a roíepíayíng game?....................... 4
Scenarío's................................................... 4
Píayíng the game........................................ 4
Game Mechanics................................... 5
Roíííng Díce................................................ 6
Ruíes Summary.......................................... 6
Drama Poínts.............................................. 8
Damage...................................................... 8
Naturaí Hazards........................................ 11
Mísceííaneous Ruíes.................................. 12
Ob|ects..................................................... 14
Experíence................................................ 15
Age........................................................... 15
Gíossary.................................................... 16
Character Creation.............................. 21
Character Concepts.................................. 22
Dístínctíve Features.................................. 22
Natíonaííty and Reíígíon............................ 22
Socíaí Status............................................. 23
Skííís, Specíaíítíes and Fíaws..................... 24
Fíaws........................................................ 28
Combat............................................... 30
Specíaí Attacks......................................... 32
Specíaí Resuíts......................................... 33
Spot Ruíes................................................ 33
Fíghtíng aboard shíp................................. 34
Dueíííng.................................................... 35
Mass Combat............................................ 36
Life at Sea.......................................... 37
Types of Shíps.......................................... 38
Puttíng to Sea........................................... 40
Sea Battíes............................................... 41
Príze Money.............................................. 42
Sea Dogs.................................................. 43
Retírement................................................ 44
Lífe Aboard Shíp....................................... 44
The Shíps Charter..................................... 48
Críme and Puníshment............................. 48
Píratícaí Actívítíes..................................... 49
Ports......................................................... 50
Money and !ui"ment......................... 53
Money....................................................... 54
Buyíng Power............................................ 55
Generaí Equípment................................... 56
Armour..................................................... 57
Weapons................................................... 57
Expíosíves................................................. 58
Cam"ai#ns.......................................... $0
Adventure Ideas....................................... 61
The Late Campaígn................................... 62
The Earíy Campaígn.................................. 62
Important Ports......................................... 66
Hístorícaí Fígures...................................... 67
%""endi& 'ne (sin# Shi" of the Line.... $)
%""endi& *+o Ma"s and *ra,e- times... 70
%""endi& *hree % startin# scenario...... 75
%""endi& .our % sea #rammar............. 7/
%""endi& .i,e 1777 Code 0ue--o.......... /0
Inde&.................................................. /2
1
Prívateers and Pírates ís a set of ruíes to facííítate roíepíayíng as prívateer or pírate crews. The ruíes are maíníy íntended to
be used ín one of two tíme períods;
• The "Goíden Age" of píracy (1680-1725) aíso referred to as the "earíy" campaígn ín these ruíes.
• The "Napoíeoníc" períod (1750-1810) aíso referred to as the "íate" campaígn ín these ruíes.
Píayers take on the roíes of offícers on a prívateer or pírate vesseí (usuaííy a síoop) and set out to make theír fortune on the
hígh seas.
The Goíden Age of píracy was between approxímateíy 1680 and 1725 and a campaígn set ín thís períod focuses on píayer
characters as the crew of a pírate shíp operatíng ín the Caríbbean and surroundíng waters.
The Napoíeoníc períod píaces píayer characters ín charge of the crew of a prívateer huntíng enemy shíppíng duríng war
tíme. Campaígns ín thís tíme períod are concentrated around the Engíísh Channeí and based ín the Channeí Isíands.
1hat you need
Lots of ten-síded díce.
Imagínatíon.
Two or more peopíe.
0ice 2o--in# and other con,entions
d10 a ten-síded díce.
2d10 roíí two ten-síded díce and add them together.
D100 roíí two ten-síded díce and read one as tens and one as uníts, gívíng a number from 01 (one) to 00 (one hundred).
Game terms
Pri,ateer3 An armed prívate vesseí whích bears the commíssíon of the sovereígn power to cruíse agaínst the enemy.
Pirate3 A robber on the hígh seas; one who by open víoíence takes the property of another on the hígh seas; especíaííy,
one who makes ít hís busíness to cruíse for robbery or píunder; a freebooter on the seas; aíso, one who steaís ín a harbour.
Games Master4 The índívíduaí who descríbes the woríd and governs the píayers ínteractíon wíth ít.
GM4 An abbrevíatíon of Games Master.
P-ayer4 An índívíduaí who píays a character ín the woríd díctated by the GM.
P-ayer Character4 A character controííed by a píayer.
5on3P-ayer Character4 A character controííed by a GM.
2d104 Roíí two ten síded díce and add them together.
d1004 Roíííng two ten-síded díce to generate a number from 01 (one) to 00 (one hundred). Before roíííng one díce ís
desígnated as tens, the other as uníts.
Modifiers4 Modífíers are appííed to roíís after roíííng.
0rama Points4 Drama poínts can be spent duríng píay to achíeve varíous specíaí resuíts.
S6i--4 A skííí represents a generaí degree of competence ín a type of actívíty, such as Shootíng.
S"ecia-ity4 A specíaííty represents a degree of expertíse ín one actívíty wíthín a group of actívítíes covered by a skííí, such
as shootíng handguns.
.-a+4 A fíaw índícates some physícaí or mentaí weakness ín a characters makeup whích can ímpact on how they perform ín
the game.
Chec64 A d100 roíí, hígher ís better.
Credits
1ritin#7 0esi#n and 0e,e-o"ment4 |onathan Cíarke
%rtists4 Gíííían Pearce
P-ay testers4 Dave Stark, Martín Wharton, Kath and Andy McLeííand
Proof3readin#4 Aííson Ross
(sin# the Game
To use the game you need to fírst of aíí read through these ruíes thoroughíy to get a feeí for the game woríd. Next generate
píayer characters then the GM shouíd run a group of píayers through the two sampíe adventures ín the back of thís book.
©2005 |onathan Cíarke. Aíí Ríghts Reserved. Thís game ís protected under the copyríght íaws of the Uníted Kíngdom. Any
reproductíon or unauthorísed use of the materíaí hereín ís prohíbíted wíthout the express wrítten permíssíon of |onathan
Cíarke.
2
The Death of Blac!eard
"aynard and Teach themselves !egun the fight #ith their s#ords$ "aynard
maing a thrust$ the point of his s#ord #ent against Teach%s cartridge !o&$ and
!ended it to the hilt' Teach !roe the guard of it$ and #ounded "aynard%s fingers
!ut did not disa!le him$ #hereupon he (umped !ac and thre# a#ay his s#ord and
fired his pistol #hich #ounded Teach' Demelt struc in !et#een them #ith his
s#ord and cut Teach%s face pretty much) in the interim !oth companies engaged in
"aynard%s sloop$ one of "aynard%s men !eing a *ighlander$ engaged Teach
#ith his !road s#ord$ #ho gave Teach a cut on the nec$ Teach saying #ell done
lad) the *ighlander replied$ If it not !e #ell done$ I%ll do it !etter' +ith that he
gave him a second stroe$ #hich cut off his head$ laying it flat on his shoulder'
,ccording to "aynard$ Blac!eard fell -#ith five shot in him and 2. dismal cuts
in several parts of his !ody'- *e ept the head and slung it !elo# the !o#sprit of his
sloop'
-,ccount of /d#ard Teach$ aa 0Blac!eard%s1$
death a!oard the 2amuel$ 1314
5
1hat is a ro-e"-ayin# #ame8
In a roíepíayíng game (RPG) one índívíduaí takes the roíe
of Games Master (GM) and descríbes fíctítíous sítuatíons
and envíronments to another group of peopíe, the
píayers. Each píayer has a character whích exísts ín that
fíctítíous envíronment and they teíí the GM how theír
characters are respondíng to the sítuatíons the GM ís
descríbíng. A set of ruíes are used to determíne how
characters reíate to the sítuatíons and events descríbed
by the GM. A character ís quantífíed by a range of
numbers and descríptors whích íet the GM and píayers
know what that character ís capabíe of (e.g. how strong
the character ís, how fast they are, what skííís they have).
Líkewíse, the GM wííí have numbers and descríptors for
anythíng whích they descríbe, such as vaíues for monsters
or ob|ects ín the envíronment they are descríbíng. The
ruíes govern how these vaíues reíate to one another, do
you hít the monster when you attack, íf you are hít, how
much damage can you take before passíng out and so on.
Scenario9s
RPG's are normaííy buíít around the concept of a scenarío.
The GM creates a scenarío for the characters to be used
ín, then runs that scenarío for the píayers. Creatíng a
scenarío ís an art form unto ítseíf and there are many
good píeces of work avaííabíe free on the ínternet whích
can heíp you create your own píeces. In very símpíe
terms, I wouíd suggest usíng the "scrípt" modeí.
In the scrípt modeí the scenarío ís broken down ínto a
seríes of scenes, much ííke a fíím or TV show. The fírst
scene ís the "hook".
In the hook scene events unfoíd whích draw the
characters ínto the story (e.g. The woman comes ínto the
prívate eyes offíce to offer hím a |ob, the crew are
approached by an oíd man wíth a treasure map, the rích
oíd man approaches the party to rescue hís kídnapped
daughter and so on). From then on the scenes aíternate
between actíon scenes and deveíopment scenes.
An actíon scene ís pretty seíf expíanatory, the characters
have to take some kínd of actíon to carry the story
forward (e.g. breakíng ínto a warehouse, raídíng the
enemy mercenary camp). Thís need not be physícaí
actíon, ít couíd be a probíem soívíng sítuatíon or other
actíon. The ruíe ís, that ín an actíon scene the focus of
attentíon ís on the characters and theír actíons and,
usuaííy, there ís some rísk to the characters (perceíved or
reaí). In deveíopment scenes the focus of attentíon ís on
somethíng asíde from the characters, typícaííy they are
receívíng some kínd of ínformatíon or actíon whích wííí
push the story forward. Normaííy, there ís no rísk to the
characters ín a deveíopment scene. The fínaí two scenes
ín a scenarío are the Cíímax and Aftermath. The cíímax ís
usuaííy an actíon scene of some kínd and, íf the
characters are successfuí, ít marks theír víctory over the
scenarío (e.g. The boss fíght, reveaííng the ídentíty of the
murderer). The fínaí scene ís the aftermath, thís ís the
scene ín whích any íoose threads are tíed up (aíthough,
the GM may deííberateíy íeave threads hangíng, to íead
ínto future adventures) and the whoíe scenarío ís wound
down.
*+ists7 :in#e Points7 asy routes and Side3
stories
There are many addítíonaí eíements to a scenarío whích
you may or may use. Some exampíes íncíude twísts,
where aíí ís not as ít seems and the píayers perceptíon of
events ís radícaííy aítered, usuaííy near the end of the
scenarío, by a síngíe event (e.g. One of your group turns
out to be a traítor or the cíassíc "Luke.. I am your father).
Twísts are great fun, but the GM shouíd be cautíous ín
over usíng them, ít's no fun íf every scenarío you wríte
has a twíst ín ít because píayers |ust come to expect ít.
Síde-storíes are addítíonaí opportunítíes to do thíngs
whích do not reíate to the maín thrust of the scenarío.
Síde-storíes are often used as a counterpoínt to the maín
events of the scenarío. If the scenarío ís unreíentíngíy
grím or depressíng a síde-story míght present the píayers
wíth the opportuníty to do somethíng ííght and refreshíng,
even humorous (e.g. If the party stop ín a víííage over
níght whííst on a quest, the íocaís míght ask them to go
and fínd a íost chííd, or some other smaíí servíce).
A hínge poínt ís an event ín the scenarío whích ís crítícaí
to the contínuatíon of the scenarío. As a GM, you shouíd
ídentífy hínge poínts ín your scenarío and come up wíth
contínuíty píans whích aííow the scenarío to contínue íf
the hínge poínt ís broken, somehow. For exampíe, íf the
characters need to speak to an oíd man to get dírectíons
to the fortress of evíí, and they kííí hím, there must be an
aíternatíve way for them to get the dírectíons. An easy
way to avoíd thís kínd of probíem ís to avoíd hínge poínts,
and ínstead use "easy routes".
An easy route ís an actíon, whích íf taken, makes the
scenarío easíer. An exampíe míght be a vísít to the
aforementíoned oíd man who can teíí you how to use the
secret back door ínto the fortress of evíí. If you don't go to
hím, or kííí hím by accídent, you can stííí get ínto the
fortress, you |ust have to go ín the hard way, through the
front door.
Linear ,s. 5on3Linear
A íínear scenarío tends to channeí the characters ínvoíved
ín ít down a very specífíc path, movíng from one sítuatíon
to another ín a more or íess prepíanned order. Such
scenaríos requíre ííttíe ínteííectuaí effort from the píayers
and GM and are ídeaí for those íazy Sunday afternoons
when everyone ís aíready tíred out.
Non-íínear scenaríos are more taxíng on píayers and GM.
The most common types of non-íínear scenaríos are tíme
based or trígger based. In a tíme based scenarío a cíock ís
effectíveíy tíckíng ín the background and events occur at
specífíc tímes, promptíng the characters to respond. Tíme
based scenaríos can be rísky to run and can easííy spíraí
out of controí, but can aíso be very en|oyabíe as the
tíckíng cíock creates a reaí sense of urgency.
In a trígger based scenarío events are tríggered by the
actíons of the characters. An event does not occur untíí
the characters trígger ít. Trígger based scenaríos are very
símííar to íínear scenaríos. A certaín actíon may trígger
more than one event, or certaín events may trígger other
events.
P-ayin# the #ame
It ísn't possíbíe to have a specífíc ruíe for every
eventuaííty. Instead, most games (íncíudíng Prívateer and
Pírates) try to províde a ruíes framework whích can appíy
to most sítuatíons, aíong wíth exampíes of how to resoíve
specífíc sítuatíons. The GM shouíd aíways be fíexíbíe and
íísten to the píayers when decídíng how to resoíve
sítuatíons. Prívateers and Pírates ís reíatíveíy easy to píay
as ít ís set ín the "reaí woríd". There are no mystícaí
powers, supernaturaí beíngs and such ííke, so everythíng
that goes on ííes wíthín the scope of normaí human
experíence. If you aren't sure appíy common sense and
go from there.
*he Go-den 2u-e is7 :a,e fun;
6
Proclamation By ,le&ander 2pots#ood$ The Governor of 7irginia
For /d#ard Teach$ commonly called 8aptain Teach$ or Blac!eard$ one
hundred Pounds$ for every other commander of a Pyrate 2hip$ 2loop$ or
7essel$ forty Pounds) for every 9ieutenant$ "aster$ or :uarter-
"aster$ Boats#ain$ or 8arpenter$ t#enty Pounds) for every other inferior
;fficer$ fifteen Pounds$ and for every private "an taen on Board such
ship$ 2loop$ or 7essel$ ten Pounds'
-<ovem!er 26$ 1314
=
Introduction
The ruíes gíve you a way to resoíve the success or faííure
of actíons undertaken by characters. Most actíons
undertaken by a character don't need a roíí. Oníy ones
where there ís some reaí rísk of faííure shouíd be roííed
for.
2o--in# 0ice
Oníy one type of díce ís used, the ten-síded díce, referred
as a to a d10. Most roíís ín Prívateers and Pírates use
d100. Thís means, roíí two ten-síded díce and one
represents the tens vaíue of a number and the other the
uníts. Before roíííng, the píayer states whích díce ís the
tens vaíue and whích the uníts, resuítíng ín a number from
01 (one) to 00 (one hundred). Another kínd of roíí whích ís
sometímes asked for ís a 2d10 roíí. Thís means roíí two
ten-síded díce and add them together.
2u-es Summary
• A character ís defíned by a descríptíon and a range of
skííís, specíaíítíes and fíaws. Píayer characters may
aíso have a Drama poínt vaíue.
• Actíons are resoíved by makíng Skííí(specíaííty)
checks.
• To make a skííí(specíaííty) check roíí d100.
• If you don9t have the skííí read the íowest díce as tens
and the híghest as uníts.
• If you ha,e the skííí oníy, state whích díce ís the tens
vaíue before roíííng, the other ís the uníts vaíue.
• If you have both the skííí and the specíaííty, read the
híghest díce as tens and the íowest as uníts.
• If your roíí ís greater than the Díffícuíty (DIFF) number
for the task you succeed, otherwíse you faíí.
• If you succeed and roíí doubíes you have achíeved a
crítícaí success.
• If you faíí and roíí doubíes you have achíeved a crítícaí
faííure.
S6i--s and S"ecia-ities
Skííís are thíngs that a character ís good at and
specíaíítíes are specífíc eíements of a skííí whích a
character ís reaííy good at.
A character cannot have a specíaííty wíthout havíng the
skííí ít ís assocíated wíth.
Possessíng the skííí índícates a good aíí round knowíedge
and abíííty ín the skííí concerned. Havíng a specíaííty
índícates addítíonaí expertíse ín a specífíc eíement of that
wíder skííí.
• If you are asked to make a check for a skííí you
don't have, roíí two ten-síded díce and read the
íowest díce as the tens vaíue.
• If you are asked to make a check for a skííí you
do have, roíí two ten-síded díce but state whích
of the two díce wííí be the tens díce before
roíííng.
• If you have the skííí and the reíevant specíaííty
beíng asked for roíí two ten-síded díce and the
híghest díce ís the tens vaíue.
A 0 on the díce ís a zero.
Skííí checks are usuaííy gíven ín the format
0I.. X S6i--<s"ecia-ity=
X ís the DIFF number for the task beíng attempted.
Sometímes the check may be gíven ín the format
S6i--<s"ecia-ity= ,s. S6i--<s"ecia-ity=
Thís means that the actíng character must roíí usíng the
fírst Skííí(specíaííty) and the DIFF ís based on the
opposíng characters Skííí and/or Specíaííty.
• If the opponent doesn't have the Skííí the DIFF ís
30.
• If the opponent has the Skííí oníy, the DIFF ís 50.
• If the opponent has both the Skííí and the
Specíaííty the DIFF ís 70.
In the former case the Skííí and specíaííty have been
defíned for you. In the íatter case oníy the skííí has been
defíned, ít ís up to the GM whether a partícuíar specíaííty
ís reíevant to the skííí check beíng made ín such a case.
Sometímes you may see the words "(reíevant specíaííty)"
after a named Skííí. Thís |ust means that you shouíd
decíde what specíaííty ís reíevant ín the specífíc sítuatíon.
For example, For a Shooting(handguns) check the
Shooting skill and handguns speciality are appropriate. If
the check only had Shooting the shooting skill would be
releant and the speciality for the weapon being used, so
if you were shooting a handgun, the handguns speciality
would be releant.
%n &am"-e of S6i-- (se
A character ís asked to make a Heaíth(constítutíon) check
wíth a Díffícuíty (DIFF) 50. The character has the skííí and
specíaííty and roíís two ten-síded díce, gettíng a one and a
síx. Because they have both the skííí and specíaííty they
read the híghest díce as tens, for a resuít of síxty one, a
success. If the píayer had roííed a zero and a four they
wouíd have read the díce as 40, a faííure.
.-a+s
Characters may take Fíaws duríng character creatíon.
Fíaws effect how you spend Drama poínts duríng píay. A
fuíí ííst of Fíaws and theír effects can be found ín the
character creatíon sectíon.
Modifiers
Modífíers are usuaííy appííed to a roíí, rather than to the
DIFF of a task. Modífíers are used to refíect factors outsíde
of the task at hand, factors whích íncrease or decrease
the díffícuíty of the task.
For example, if you are trying to shoot someone the !IFF
is defined by the leel of coer they hae. Factors like
range, moement and so on are expressed as positie or
negatie modifiers to the attackers roll.
>
Standard 0ifficu-ties
Most of the tíme píayers wííí have a DIFF number for a
task beíng attempted. To heíp the GM thís sectíon gíves
some guídeíínes on how to set Díffícuíty numbers.
0ifficu-ty 0I..
Automatíc 0
Very Easy 10
Easy 30
Routíne 50
Hard 70
Aímost Impossíbíe 90
%utomatic4 Somethíng whích ít ís ímpossíbíe to faíí at,
such as waíkíng around normaííy or openíng a door.
>ery asy4 Somethíng whích vírtuaííy anybody couíd be
expected to do wíthout díffícuíty (such as threadíng a
needíe, runníng over broken ground).
asy4 A task whích an unskíííed and unspecíaíísed
character has a 50% chance of succeedíng at (such as
ííftíng a bíg bag of potatoes over your head).
2outine4 A task whích a skíííed or specíaíísed character
has a 50% chance of succeedíng at (such as ííftíng a
teenager over your head).
:ard4 A task whích a skíííed and specíaíísed person has a
50% chance of succeedíng at (ííftíng a smaíí aduít over
your head).
%-most Im"ossib-e4 A task whích any character wouíd
fínd hard to succeed at (such as ííftíng a donkey over your
head).
The tabíe beíow shows the percentage chance of beatíng
a gíven díffícuíty dependíng on whether you have neíther
the skííí nor specíaííty, have one or the other, or have
both skííí and specíaííty.
DIFF No Skill Skill only Skill and
Speciality
0 100% 100% 100%
10 82% 90% 98%
20 66% 80% 95%
30 50% 70% 90%
40 37% 60% 83%
50 26% 50% 74%
60 17% 40% 63%
70 10% 30% 50%
80 5% 20% 34%
90 2% 10% 18%
100 0% 0% 0%
Thís ís províded pureíy as an aíd to the GM when |udgíng
what DIFF íeveís to assígn to tasks.
For example, a character with a releant skill and
speciality has a "#$ chance of beating a !IFF of %&.
S6i-- Modifiers
Superhuman abííítíes are sometímes represented by skííí
modífíers. A skííí modífíer ís a bonus whích ís added to
skííí roíís, aííowíng roíís ín excess of 100.
0efau-t 0ifficu-ty
If ít ís not stated to the contrary, assume that a task ís
routíne, wíth a DIFF of 50.
'""osed chec6s
Sometímes two characters may attempt to perform
actíons whích confííct wíth one another and where oníy
one can "wín". The character who ínítíated the sítuatíon
shouíd make theír check, wíth the DIFF based on theír
opponents Skííí and/or Specíaííty status.
• If the opponent doesn't have the Skííí the DIFF ís
30.
• If the opponent has the Skííí oníy the DIFF ís 50.
• If the opponent has both the Skííí and the
Specíaííty the DIFF ís 70.
An opposed check ís often índícated by the phrase (or
somethíng símííar) "agaínst the Skííí(specíaííty) of the
character".
'"tiona- 2u-e4 2andom '""osed Chec6s
Rather than usíng fíxed DIFF numbers for opposed checks,
ínstead make the appropríate skííí(specíaííty) check and
use the roíí as the DIFF number. Thís ruíe síows down píay
but you may fínd some píayers prefer ít, partícuíaríy ín
combat sítuatíons. Thís ruíe ís entíreíy optíonaí.
!ui"ment
Certaín skííí checks may specífy that equípment ís needed
to attempt them. Usuaííy, you can stííí attempt the check
wíthout the requíred equípment but must take a -20 on
the check. Thís assumes you can ímprovíse tooís to get
the |ob done. The GM aíways has the fínaí say over
whether a skííí check can be attempted wíthout the
requíred equípment. In some cases they may not aííow
the check wíthout the requíred equípment.
*ryin# %#ain
The GM aíways has the fínaí say on whether you can
attempt an actíon agaín havíng prevíousíy faííed. As a ruíe
of thumb, some sígnífícant change must occur before you
can try agaín.
For example, if you were trying to pick a lock you might
hae to ac'uire different picks before you could try again.
In combat, every check ís consídered to be uníque, so íf
you míss an attack you can try agaín wíth your next
actíon.
1or6in# to#ether
If severaí characters are workíng together on the same aíí
shouíd roíí. Take the híghest roíí and add the tens vaíue of
each of the other roíís to ít.
For example, if three characters are working on the same
task and rolled (", )* and *+ their combined total would
(",),*-"*.
3
Critica- Successes
If you succeed on a check and roíí doubíes you have
crítícaííy succeeded. A crítícaí success means that you
have succeeded as íntended and somethíng benefícíaí has
occurred on top of the normaí success. Some ídeas míght
íncíude:
• When attackíng, you ínfííct more damage.
• You receíve addítíonaí usefuí ínformatíon beyond
what you were seekíng.
Critica- .ai-ures
If you faíí a check and roíí doubíes you have crítícaííy
faííed. A crítícaí faííure means somethíng bad happens, ín
addítíon to the normaí consequences of faííure. Some
ídeas míght íncíude:
• You hít an aííy rather than your íntended target
(aííy gets a dodge or parry as normaí).
• You drop your weapon.
• An unreííabíe weapon |ams.
• You tríp and faíí down.
• You stun yourseíf.
• Your weapon híts somethíng hard and breaks.
0rama Points
Drama Poínts are what makes a character "íarger than
íífe". Duríng píay, a drama poínt can be used ín one of
three ways.
• Spend a poínt to add fífty to a roíí you |ust made.
• Spend a poínt to subtract fífty from a roíí someone
eíse |ust made.
• Spend a poínt to take an addítíonaí actíon or move, at
any tíme. You can ínterrupt other characters turns íf
you wísh.
Spent drama poínts are recovered every morníng, uníess
they were used to "cheat death". Cheatíng death ís
díscussed ín more detaíí beíow.
0ama#e
Characters can be damaged by a varíety of thíngs,
íncíudíng deííberate attacks and naturaí hazards. Damage
ís expressed as a numerícaí vaíue, the hígher the vaíue
the more damage ínfíícted by the event. Each tíme a
character ís damaged, note the amount of damage as a
díscrete wound (thís ís ímportant because aíí wounds heaí
símuítaneousíy).
0ama#e Chec6s
When a character takes a wound they must ímmedíateíy
make a Heaíth(resíííence) check wíth the totaí vaíue of aíí
theír current wounds as the DIFF. Thís check ís known as a
"damage check".
• If they faíí the check they ímmedíateíy coííapse
and remaín compíeteíy íncapacítated for ten
mínutes.
• If they faíí wíth a roíí of doubíes (a crítícaí faííure)
they ímmedíateíy coííapse and remaín
compíeteíy íncapacítated for one hour.
• If they faíí and theír roíí ís íess than or equaí to
theír most seríous current wound, they are
íncapacítated for ten mínutes and aíso dyíng.
• If they faíí and theír roíí ís doubíes and íess than
or equaí to theír most seríous current wound,
they díe ínstantíy.
If the totaí of wounds taken ever reaches one hundred,
death occurs ínstantíy.
For example, a character already has a #&pt wound and
then takes a +&pt wound. .hey must immediately make a
/ealth(resilience) check against a !IFF of (& (#&pt
wound,+&pt wound). If they rolled (* or more, they
succeeded and may continue as normal. If they rolled #*
to (& they would be incapacitated for ten minutes (one
hour if they rolled ## or %%). If they rolled #& or less they
would be incapacitated and dying (because they rolled
less than or e'ual to their worst wounds alue). If they
rolled **, ++ or )) (doubles and less than their most
serious wounds alue) they would be dead instantly.
0yin# Characters
A dyíng character requíres a successfuí Heaííng(surgery)
roíí to be made on them wíthín one hour of startíng to díe.
The DIFF ís equaí to the vaíue of the dyíng characters
most seríous wound. A success stabíííses them. Each
attempt takes ten mínutes.
For example, using the aboe example of a character with
a #&pt and +&pt wound, they would need a successful
/ealing(surgery) roll against a !IFF of #& to sae their
life.
0ama#e Codes
Any attack on a character wííí have a damage code. The
amount of damage ínfíícted on the character (ín poínts) ís
determíned by readíng the díce of the attack roíí ín a
certaín way, the way beíng determíned by the damage
code as foííows:
Damage
Code
Calculate Damage by Roll
37
VL (very
íow)
Damage equaís the íowest díce of the
attack roíí (zeroes are tens).
3
L (íow) Damage equaís the híghest díce of the
attack roíí (zeroes are tens).
7
M
(medíum)
Damage equaís the sum of the díce ín
the attack roíí (add the díce together).
10
H (hígh) Damage equaís the product of the díce
ín the attack roíí (muítípíy the díce by
one another).
21
VH (very
hígh)
Damage equaís the attack roíí as
roííed.
37
The ríghtmost coíumn shows the damage vaíues for each
damage code for an attack roíí of 37.
For example, an 0 damage weapon would inflict *&
damage on a successful attack roll of )".
The notes beíow are íntended to serve as a rough guíde to
weapons and damage codes. More ínformatíon on specífíc
weapons and theír damage codes can be found ín the
equípment sectíon:
• Smaíí anímaís or normaí unarmed attacks
typícaííy ínfííct VL damage. VL damage ís aíso
caused by the effects of armour on more
powerfuí attacks.
• Smaíí kníves, brass knuckíes and cudgeís
typícaííy ínfííct L damage.
• Pístoís and One handed meíee weapons (such as
swords and axes) typícaííy ínfííct M damage.
• Rífíes, Shotguns and Two handed meíee weapons
(such as great axes and haíberds) typícaííy ínfííct
H damage.
• Fíxed mount weapons, such as boat guns,
typícaííy ínfííct VH damage.
1orn %rmour
Worn armour ís treated very símpíy ín Prívateers and
Pírates. A suít of worn armour steps damage from attacks
down one step.
4
For example, an 0 damage hit would be stepped down to
1 damage against a character in appropriate armour.
Most armours are effectíve agaínst oníy one of the
foííowíng, aíthough some are effectíve agaínst severaí
types:
• Expíosíve
• Guns
• Meíee attacks
A more comprehensíve ííst of armour types can be found
ín the equípment sectíon of these ruíes.
1ounds and :ea-in#
Grie,ous 1ound
If a character survíves a dyíng sítuatíon they shouíd roíí
d100 on the tabíe beíow to determíne what compíícatíons
are assocíated wíth the gríevous wound.
d100 Com"-ication
01-60 No compíícatíons
61-65 Scar
66-70 Fever
71-75 Fracture
76-80 Weakness
81-85 Shakes
86-90 Braín Damage
91-95 Amnesía
96-97 Partíaí Deafness
98-99 Bíínded ín one eye
00 Amputatíon
%m"utation
"Hmmm... I thínk that's goíng to have to come off"
The wound ís severe enough to necessítate the
amputatíon of a íímb or extremíty. Roíí 1d10 to determíne
whích and roíí d10 agaín for síde (even roíí ís ríght síde,
odd roíí ís íeft síde;
d10 Location
1-2 A foot
3-4 A hand
5-6 An arm
7 Lower Spíne
8 Upper Spíne
9-0 A íeg
.oot4 Aíí actíons whích use the míssíng foot are at -20,
and your movement rate ís quartered.
:and4 The character cannot perform an actíon whích
requíres two hands and actíons where two hands are
preferabíe are at -20. The character may píace a
prosthetíc hand or hook on the stump (a hook can ínfííct H
damage when used as a meíee weapon) reducíng the
penaíty for actíons where two hands are preferabíe to
oníy -10.
Le#4 Aíí actíons whích use the míssíng íeg are at -20, and
your movement ís quartered. Thís assumes that the
character has a wooden íeg or crutch, íf they don't, they
cannot move at aíí.
%rm4 The character cannot perform actíons whích
requíres two arms. Thís íncíudes usíng two handed
weapons.
(""er S"ine4 The character ís permanentíy paraíysed
from the neck down.
Lo+er S"ine4 The character ís permanentíy paraíysed
from the waíst down. They can use theír upper body stííí,
but not theír íegs. They requíre a wheeí chaír to get
around (movement ín a wheeíchaír ís one-quarter normaí
rate).
?-inded in one eye
"I thínk the eyepatch makes me íook rakísh, don't you?"
Loss of depth perceptíon gíves the character -10 to aíí
ranged attacks.
Partia- 0eafness
"Pardon... too much tíme on the gun decks you know"
The character has a -10 to aíí Notíce checks from now on.
.e,er
"Pass me another hot compress"
The character ís grípped by fever and none of theír
wounds receíve any naturaí heaííng for 2d10 days.
.racture
"Hmm.. bone pokíng through the skín.. I thínk ít's broken"
One of the characters íímbs has been broken. Treat thís
as an Amputatíon for game effects, but the effect oníy
íasts 2d10 weeks. In addítíon, roíí on thís tabíe beíow
rather than the amputatíon tabíe:
d10 Location
1 A foot
2 A hand
3-4 An arm
5-6 A íeg
7 Skuíí
8 Peívís
9 Spíne
0 Ríbs
Foot, Hand, Arm and Leg resuíts are as theír amputatíon
equívaíents.
S6u--4 Aíí checks are at -10 untíí the fracture heaís.
2ibs4 Aíí physícaí roíís ínvoívíng movíng the body are at
-10 untíí the fracture heaís.
Pe-,is or S"ine4 Whííst the effect íasts, the character ís
compíeteíy ímmobííe and cannot take part ín any
adventures.
1ea6ness
"Sorry.. couíd you heíp me wíth thís?"
The characters wound weakens theír body sígnífícantíy
and íeaves them ín an unheaíthy state. The character
permanentíy íoses aíí theír specíaíítíes ín the Brawn
group.
Scar
"It tends to ache ín damp weather"
The wound íeaves a notíceabíe scar, thís has no game
effect but may be fun to boast about.
Sha6es
"Not much use as a butíer I'm afraíd"
Damage to the nerves íeaves the character wíth a
tendency to shíver and shake at random. The character
?
permanentíy íoses aíí theír specíaíítíes ín the Refíexes
group and cannot take any more ín future.
?rain 0ama#e
"Píeeshh... yuuuu musht runn!"
Damage to the braín means that the character now síurs
theír words and fínds ít hard to thínk. The character
permanentíy íoses aíí theír specíaíítíes ín the Wíts group
and cannot take any more ín future.
%mnesia
"Sorry.. who are you agaín?"
The wound has gíven the character amnesía and ímpaíred
theír memory and abíííty to recaíí detaíís. The character
permanentíy íoses aíí theír specíaíítíes ín the Knowíedge
group and cannot take any more ín future.
Cheatin# 0eath
If a character díes wíth one or more Drama poínts
unspent, they may sacrífíce a poínt permanentíy to "cheat
death". If they take thís optíon they survíve the event that
shouíd have kíííed them. It ís up to the GM and/or píayer
to decíde how they survíved. In game terms, the event
that kíííed them ís deemed to have not happened (so any
damage ít ínfíícted dídn't occur). If the character díed ín a
sítuatíon where revívaí wouíd ííkeíy resuít ín ímmedíate
death agaín, such as ín a ríver of íava, drowníng ín a
storm or ín the míddíe of a battíe, the character ís
somehow removed or protected untíí the dangerous
sítuatíon ends.
For example, a character who drowns in a storm at sea
decides to 2heat death. .he 30 rules that they surie
the storm and are cast up on the shore of a nearby island
or some foreign coast a few days later.
.irst %id
A character can spend ten mínutes to make a Heaííng(fírst
aíd) check on a wound. If the character attemptíng the
check does not have a fírst aíd kít they have a -20 to the
check. If they can ímprovíse tooís (such as usíng rípped
up cíothes for bandages and bíts of wood for spíínts) the
modífíer ís oníy -10.
A successfuí check haíves the vaíue of that wound,
roundíng up. A crítícaííy successfuí check quarters the
vaíue of the wound, roundíng up. A gíven wound can oníy
receíve one successfuí heaííng check (normaí or crítícaí)
and addítíonaí successfuí heaííng checks have no effect
on that wounds vaíue, whích can oníy be reduced further
by naturaí heaííng.
A crítícaí faííure on a Heaííng(fírst aíd) check precíudes
any further attempts to treat the wound by other
characters (any such attempts automatícaííy faíí).
5atura- :ea-in#
Each of a characters wounds reduces ín vaíue by one
poínt at sunríse each day, two poínts íf the character
rested for the entíre prevíous day.
For example, a character with a two point and a fie point
wound spends a day in bed. .he next morning the two
point wound has reduced to 4ero, completely healed, and
the fie point wound has dropped to three.
!uring that day the character is actie and the next
morning the three point only drops to two points. .he rest
of the day is spent in bed so the next morning the two
point wound completely heals to 4ero.
h
1.
5atura- :a@ards
Naturaí hazards are damagíng events from the naturaí
woríd around a character. The sectíon beíow íísts some
common (or uncommon) naturaí hazards and ruíes for
deaííng wíth them. Uníess stated otherwíse, armour does
not reduce damage from naturaí hazards.
.ati#ue
Fatígue resuíts from íncíement weather condítíons (such
as excessíve heat or coíd), physícaí íabour, starvatíon or
|ust stayíng awake for extended períods.
Fatígue ís expressed as a cumuíatíve modífíer to aíí
checks a character makes, representíng the effects of
exhaustíon on theír abíííty to perform. If the modífíer ever
reaches -100 the character díes from exhaustíon. Each
tíme one of the foííowíng condítíons ís met the character
receíves a fatígue penaíty.
• After a níght wíthout a good eíght hours síeep.
• After a day spent outdoors ín íncíement
condítíons wíthout proper protectíon (such as
wínter cíothíng ín the coíd, or desert cíothíng ín
the heat).
• After a day spent wíthout food.
• After an hour of hard physícaí íabour
The penaíty ís:
• -20 íf you don't have the Heaíth skííí.
• -10 íf you have the Heaíth skííí.
• -5 íf you have the Heaíth skííí and endurance
specíaííty.
A good níghts síeep, proper meaí and sheíter reduces the
current fatígue penaíty back to zero agaín.
Suffocation
A character who ís depríved of aír must make a DIFF 50
Heaíth(endurance) check every mínute. The fírst tíme
they faíí they pass out unconscíous, the second tíme they
faíí they díe. They must contínue makíng checks untíí they
get aír agaín.
.ear
When a character receíves a sudden shock or ís exposed
to some horrífyíng event they must make a DIFF 50
Wííí(bravery) roíí to keep theír nerve. If they succeed they
are abíe to maíntaín theír poíse and act normaííy. A faííed
roíí means they must fíee the cause of the check, but they
may make a new check at the start of each subsequent
round to regaín controí. If they cannot fíee they are
treated as heípíess untíí they make the check. If a
character crítícaííy succeeds on such a check they have
become ímmune to whatever caused that check and no
íonger have to make Wííí(bravery) checks when
confronted wíth símííar círcumstances.
If a character crítícaííy faíís such a roíí they íose a Drama
poínt permanentíy.
The most common modífíer to a "fear" roíí ís one to
refíect the ambíent "scaríness" of the envíronment.
Somethíng ííke a graveyard at níght wouíd rate a -10 and
a "haunted house" míght be a -20.
.a--in#
A character who faíís takes damage equaí to the dístance
faííen ín feet. Armour gíves no protectíon from faíííng,
aíthough íandíng on a soft surface haíves damage taken
(round down). The GM may aííow a character a DIFF 50
Agíííty(dodge) check to haíf the damage taken agaín.
A character undergoíng a controííed faíí, such as |umpíng
downwards, takes haíf damage (round down).
For example, if a character falls +& feet they take +&
damage. If they 5umped down +& feet they would only
take *& damage. If they also make a successful !IFF %&
6gility(dodge) check they would take only % damage.
Co--isions
If somethíng coííídes wíth somethíng eíse ít takes damage
based on the speeds (ín mííes per hour) of the two ob|ects
ín the coííísíon.
In the case of a nose to taíí vehícíe coííísíon (one vehícíe
runníng ínto the back of another) the damage equaís the
hígher speed mínus the íower speed.
In a head on coííísíon the damage equaís the sum of the
speeds of the two ob|ects.
In any other sítuatíon the damage taken ís the average of
the two speeds.
?urnin#
If a character ís burníng roíí d100 at the start of each
round for the damage they take. The damage code for the
roíí depends on the nature of the fíre:
Damage
Code
Examples
VL Very Low temperature fíames (burníng
match)
L Low temperature fíames (boíííng water,
moíten íead or wood fíre)
M Medíum temperature (napaím or moíten íron)
or moderate acíd
H Hígh temperature (thermíte, whíte
phosphorus, íava) or strong acíd
Armour steps damage down one step ín the fírst round
oníy, then ís consídered destroyed.
*o&ins
Toxíns íncíude poísons and díseases. A character who ís
exposed to a poíson must make a Heaíth(constítutíon) roíí.
The DIFF depends on the potency of the poíson and the
síze of the dose, factors whích the GM must |udge on a
case by case basís.
For example, an 6dder bite might be !IFF #&, whereas a
deliberate poisoning attempt with hemlock might be !IFF
*&&.
If they faíí they wííí díe one hour íater íf they do not
receíve an antídote. A successfuí Heaííng(medícíne) roíí
by the poísoned character or someone eíse prevents
death. The modífíer to thís roíí equaís the modífíer of the
poíson. A gíven character may make one attempt to heaí,
íf that faíís they cannot try agaín.
Doctors tooís are needed to avoíd a -20 to the
Heaííng(medícíne) check, aíthough íf a character can
ímprovíse such tooís (such as usíng hot toweís and a knífe
to try and draw the poíson) the penaíty ís oníy -10.
In the case of a dísease, make a Heaíth(constítutíon) roíí
when fírst exposed to see íf you catch the dísease. If you
do, make a second roíí after one day has expíred. If you
faíí agaín you wííí díe one week íater wíthout a
Heaííng(medícíne) roíí by yourseíf or someone eíse.
Doctors tooís are needed to avoíd a -20 to the
Heaííng(medícíne) check, aíthough íf a character can
ímprovíse such tooís (such as usíng hot toweís and
pouítíces) the penaíty ís oníy -10.
For díseases, the modífíer agaín refíects the íethaííty and
transmíssabíííty of the dísease, factors whích the GM wííí
have to |udge on a case by case basís.
For example, the 7lack !eath would be around !IFF %&,
ebola irus around !IFF 8& and !IFF % for common
11
influen4a.
0ru#s and %-coho-
Drugs and aícohoí are measured ín terms of drínks. A
drínk ís a shot of spíríts, a gíass of wíne or a pínt of íager
or beer.
Each drínk gíves you a cumuíatíve -20 penaíty to aíí roíís.
If you have the Heaíth skííí or Constítutíon specíaííty
reduce the penaíty to -10 and reduce ít to -5 íf you have
both the Heaíth skííí and the Constítutíon specíaííty.
Thís penaíty ís reduced by the 10 for every hour you go
wíthout a drínk.
Recreatíonaí drugs can be handíed ín much the same
way, wíth one dose equaíííng one or more drínks. A ííne of
cocaíne ís about one drínk, síngíe spííff of marí|uana or
cannabís ís worth two drínks, a shot of heroín around fíve
drínks.
&"-osions
Roíí d100 to determíne damage for each person near the
bíast. These fígures are for a grenado sízed bíast. For
íarger or smaííer expíosíons símpíy muítípíy the ranges
and damages detaííed beíow by a suítabíe factor.
• Targets wíthín ten yards of the bíast centre take
M damage.
• Targets wíthín fíve yards of the bíast centre take
H damage.
• Targets ín contact wíth the expíodíng "thíng"
take VH damage.
Appropríate body armour reduces the damage code one
step, as does beíng prone (so beíng prone and suítabíy
armoured reduces the damage two steps).
In the case of a grenado, the d100 roíí ís repíaced wíth a
Throwíng(baíanced) check. Make the check, then
caícuíate the damage off the check roíí.
*am"ed Char#e &"-osion
A tamped charge expíosíon ís an expíosíon where the
expíosíve has been tamped to focus ít's effects onto
somethíng. That somethíng takes twíce the normaí
damage and anythíng eíse nearby takes haíf the normaí
damage.
5on3"-ayer Characters
Non-píayer characters (NPC's) can quíckíy be generated
usíng the character generatíon ruíes. As a ruíe of thumb,
oníy ma|or NPC's shouíd have Drama poínts. Most NPC's
do not receíve any Drama poínts, Drama poínts beíng one
of the thíngs that reaííy sets píayer characters apart from
most non-píayer characters.
Misce--aneous 2u-es
Thís sectíon outíínes a varíety of mísceííaneous ruíes
whích may make resoívíng sítuatíons ín píay easíer.
ncumbrance
A character who ís carryíng or wearíng any equípment
may have an Encumbrance (ENC) score of one or more.
Aíí ítems have an ENC vaíue, whích índícates how heavy
and buíky the ítem ís.
A characters ENC score ís the sum of the Encumbrance
vaíues of aíí the thíngs they are wearíng, puíííng around or
carryíng. Needíess to say, a characters ENC score wííí
change as they ad|ust what ítems they are carryíng,
wearíng or draggíng around wíth them.
If a characters ENC score exceeds a certaín threshoíd they
are consídered to be ncumbered and move at haíf
speed and cannot stay afíoat ín water. The threshoíds are
gíven ín the tabíe beíow:
T!esold
Character has neíther Heaíth nor strength 30 ENC
Character has Heaíth 50 ENC
Character has Heaíth and strength 70 ENC
If ENC score ever exceeds twíce your threshoíd you
cannot move at aíí.
As a ruíe of thumb, caícuíate the ENC vaíue of any ob|ect
as foííows.
• If the ítem can be heíd comfortabíy ín one hand,
ENC 5 (such as a pístoí)
• If ítem can be hefted ín one hand (such as a
sword), ENC 10
• If ítem requíres two hands to handíe, ENC 15 or
more
• For íarger ob|ects, ENC equaís doubíe the square
root of the ob|ects weíght ín pounds (so a 900íb
ob|ect has an ENC of 60 and a 225íb ob|ect has
an ENC of 30).
Losin# &tremities
If a character íoses an extremíty they automatícaííy take a
wound of a certaín vaíue as foííows, and the íísted effect
for the appropríate extremíty from the amputatíon
compíícatíon.
• .in#er or toe4 40pt wound
• :and or .oot4 60pt wound
• %rm or Le#4 80pt wound
0is#uise
A character must make a successfuí Dísguíse check to
dísguíse themseíves. If the character does not have a
Dísguíse kít thís roíí ís at -20. Other character need to
make a successfuí Notíce check and roíí hígher than the
Dísguísed characters orígínaí roíí to see through the
dísguíse.
For example, a character succeeds at their !isguise check
with a #%. 6nyone encountering them must make a
successful 9otice check with a !IFF of #% to see through
the disguise.
(sin# Inf-uence
To sway another characters opíníon ín a dírectíon of your
choíce make a check of your Infíuence agaínst your
"targets" Wííí check. The reíevant specíaííty for Infíuence
depends on the method used (seductíon, persuasíon or
íntímídatíon). For the Wííí check, use Wííí(resístance)
agaínst seductíon or persuasíon, and Wííí(bravery) agaínst
íntímídatíon.
It's ímportant to note that Infíuence ís not "mínd controí".
A successfuí check does not resuítíng síavísh obedíence to
your whíms, ít |ust shífts the targets opíníon ín a dírectíon
of your choosíng. Infíuence checks shouíd never be a
substítute for roíepíayíng, but they shouíd effect how you
roíepíay.
,a-uation
To determíne an ítems vaíue and provenance make an
appropríate skííí check. For non-metaí goods Craftíng ís
appropríate, for metaí goods use Smíthíng and for
hístorícaí artefacts use Humanítíes(hístory).
Lan#ua#es
Every character begíns píay abíe to speak theír natíve
íanguage and a number of addítíonaí íanguages equaí to
the tens vaíue of theír age.
Remember that íf you don't speak someone's íanguage
12
speak ín a íoud, cíear voíce and wave your hands around
wíídíy. Thís techníque has worked for the Brítísh for
hundreds of years.
'"enin# Loc6s
Píckíng a íock or dísarmíng a mechanícaí trap requíres an
Smíthíng(artífíce) check and a íockpíck kít. If you do not
have such a kít take a -20 on the check (thís can be
reduced to -10 íf you can ímprovíse tooís from stíff wíres,
for exampíe). The modífíer to the check depends on the
quaííty of the íock.
Loc6 Aua-ity Modifier
Cheap íock 0
Standard íock -10
Expensíve íock -20
A crítícaí faííure means you have broken a tooí off ín the
íock. You need a new íockpíck kít and the íock ís unusabíe,
permanentíy |ammed.
:untin# and .ora#in#
Huntíng ís a popuíar past tíme of the upper cíasses and ís
aíso a good way of suppíementíng shíps ratíons when you
are moored near íand. Foragíng ís much ííke huntíng, oníy
you are íookíng for edíbíe píantíífe rather than huntíng
wíídíífe for meat.
A character who ís huntíng and foragíng gets a DIFF 50
Survívaí roíí every hour. A success fínds enough food to
feed one person for one day. A crítícaí success fínds
enough food to feed ten peopíe for a day.
*rac6in#
Foííowíng tracks to theír end requíres a Notíce roíí. The
modífíer of the roíí depends on the terraín you are
trackíng across, from -10 to foííow a fresh track through
soft earth to -90 to foííow an oíd track over rock washed
recentíy by raín.
A character may, at any tíme, try to break theír tracks by
makíng a DIFF 50 Steaíth check. Thís takes haíf an hour
and a successfuí check means that a character foííowíng
them must make a new Notíce check where the Steaíth
check succeeded to píck up the traíí. A crítícaí success
means that the character foííowíng must get a crítícaí
success on theír Notíce check to píck up the tracks agaín.
>ehic-es
Vehícíes have a Manoeuvre Score (MS) and Toughness
Ratíng (TR). Vehícíes wíth a * after theír Toughness Ratíng
do not fuííy encíose theír dríver/passengers. The
occupants of such a vehícíe can be targeted wíth a -20 to
the attack check, a successfuí hít damages the occupant
wíthout híttíng the vehícíe.
Manoeu,rin#
When you are controíííng a vehícíe reíevant skííí checks
are made, but the DIFF ís the Manoeuvre Score of the
vehícíe concerned.
>ehic-e 0ama#e
Vehícíes are damaged ííke other ob|ects. Shíps are
handíed dífferentíy, specífíc ruíes beíng presented íater ín
these ruíes.
Chases
Chases are símpíy resoíved as a seríes of opposed
maneuver checks, wíth each partícípant makíng a check
each round. Anyone who faíís the check ís out of the
chase. If the person beíng chased faíís the check the
chase ends and they have been caught up to by everyone
eíse.
The dríver of the vehícíe beíng chased may opt to take a
negatíve modífíer of theír choosíng to the check,
representíng some stunt or maneuver whích they
perform. Everyone eíse ín the chase must take the same
modífíer or drop out of the chase automatícaííy.
Anyone who crítícaííy faíís theír check crashes and theír
vehícíe takes suffícíent damage to render ít broken.
Horse ríders can partícípate ín chases, makíng Rídíng
checks.
Characters on foot can aíso chase on another, makíng
Athíetícs checks. But íf anybody eíse ín the chase ís on
horseback, or ín a vehícíe, the foot bound character has a
-20 to theír check to refíect theír dísadvantage at beíng
sígnífícantíy síower, offset a ííttíe by beíng more
manoeuverabíe.
Shootin# in Chases
The vehícíe, runner or ríder beíng chased can fíre
backwards facíng weapons at any vehícíe pursuíng ít and
the chasíng vehícíes, runners & ríders can fíre any forward
facíng weapons. Passengers ín a vehícíe beíng chased can
fíre out of avaííabíe wíndows or hatches íf such exíst and
íf they can be opened. Attacks from a movíng vehícíe,
whííst runníng or from a movíng mount have a -10 on
attack checks.
If the íead runner, ríder or vehícíe set a negatíve modífíer
for the maneuver checks ín the round that modífíer ís aíso
added to any attacks made by any one eíse ín the round,
representíng the effect of tryíng to hít a weavíng and
rapídíy maneuveríng target.
Sea Chases
Shíps can chase each other usíng the above ruíes. Each
round make a Saíííng check for each shíp ín the chase and
use the chase ruíes as íísted to determíne the resuíts. The
íeader can oníy take a negatíve modífíer to theír saíííng
check íf there ís some "terraín" whích aííows them to
engage ín dangerous maneuveríng, such as a coastííne or
reefs.
If shíps catch up wíth the "escapíng" shíp a sea battíe
may ensue, use the ruíes ín the "Lífe aboard shíp" sectíon
to resoíve thís.
%nima-s
Líke characters, anímaís are descríbed by theír Skííís and
Specíaíítíes. They may aíso have skííí modífíers to refíect
superhuman íeveís of abíííty.
15
Aíí anímaís have the Notíce and Athíetícs skííí. Carnívores
aíso possess the Fíghtíng skííí.
Anímaí attacks ínfííct M damage, uníess stated otherwíse,
to refíect the anímaís naturaí weapons such as teeth,
hooves and fangs. Aíí anímaís are motívated by ínstínct as
foííows:
• An anímaí wííí attack anyone threateníng íts offspríng
or mates.
• An anímaí wííí run from anyone threateníng ít.
• An anímaí whích tríes to escape but whích ís cornered
wííí attack.
• An anímaí wííí try to scare off anyone trespassíng on
íts terrítory.
• An anímaí wííí attack possíbíe prey when ít ís hungry.
If the prey ín|ures ít, ít wííí attempt to retreat.
The oníy exceptíons to thís are síck anímaís whích may
attack wíthout provocatíon and maíe anímaís ín the
matíng season, whích are ííabíe to attack wíthout warníng.
If an anímaí has a bonus to Heaíth checks they do not díe
ínstantíy untíí the totaí wounds they have taken equaí
100+that modífíer.
For example, a 7ear has a ,"& on /ealth checks, so they
do not die instantly until they their total wounds reaches
*"&pts.
"nimal Skills # Specialities
Bear Athíetícs, Heaíth*+70, Notíce,
Fíghtíng, Wííí
Cat Athíetícs, Notíce, Fíghtíng, Agíííty*,
Steaíth*
Chímp Athíetícs, Heaíth, Notíce, Fíghtíng,
Agíííty*
Constríctor Snake Athíetícs, Heaíth*, Notíce, Fíghtíng,
Steaíth*
Gorííía Athíetícs, Heaíth*, Notíce, Fíghtíng,
Agíííty, Wííí
Heavy Horse Athíetícs, Heaíth*+50, Notíce
Large Dog Athíetícs, Heaíth, Notíce, Fíghtíng,
Wííí*
Líght Horse Athíetícs, Heaíth*, Notíce
Medíum Dog Athíetícs, Notíce, Fíghtíng, Agíííty,
Steaíth, Wííí*
Pack of Rats
1
Athíetícs, Notíce, Fíghtíng, Steaíth
Poísonous Snake
2
Athíetícs, Notíce, Fíghtíng, Steaíth*
Smaíí Dog Athíetícs, Notíce, Fíghtíng, Agíííty*,
Steaíth, Wííí*
Shark
3
Athíetícs, Notíce, Heaíth*+40,
Fíghtíng, Agíííty
Tíger Athíetícs, Heaíth+30*, Notíce,
Fíghtíng, Agíííty, Steaíth, Wííí
Woíf Athíetícs, Heaíth, Notíce, Fíghtíng,
Agíííty, Steaíth
A * by a Skííí índícates that the anímaí has the skííí and aíí
ít's specíaíítíes.
1
These stats are for a pack of rats, an índívíduaí rat ís no
threat to a character.
2
If the snake ís poísonous a hít whích causes one or more
damage poísons the character.
3
A character who ís attacked by a shark ís aímost
certaíníy ín the water wíth ít and has a -20 on aíí checks
due to the díffícuítíes of beíng ímmersed.
'bBects
Aíí ob|ects are gíven a Toughness Ratíng (TR) whích
refíects theír ínherent toughness and resístance to
damage.
When an ob|ect takes damage, compare ít's TR to that
damage.
Note that thís ís |ust the damage from the síngíe event.
Ob|ects do not take wounds ííke characters, they are
eíther broken or unbroken.
• If the damage ís hígher, the ob|ect ís broken.
• If the damage ís íower the ob|ect remaíns
unbroken.
In the case of a door, breakíng ít forces ít open. In the
case of a waíí or barríer, breakíng ít |ust punches an
appropríate sízed hoíe through ít (e.g. An axe wouíd hack
an axe head sízed hoíe ín ít).
Expíosíon devíces are more effectíve agaínst barríers.
Beíng broken by an expíosíve devíce bíows a good sízed
hoíe through the ob|ect, íarge enough for characters to
crawí or shuffíe through.
Common 'bBects
The foííowíng ííst ís by no means excíusíve, ít ís íntended
to gíve you some ídea of the TR scores for varíous
common ob|ects.
'bBect *2
Líght door 5
Medíum door 10
Heavy door 15
Very Heavy door 20
Líght íocked chest 10
Medíum íocked chest 20
Empty barreí 10
Fuíí barreí 20
Heavy íocked chest 30
Very Heavy íocked chest 40
Wattíe waíí 10
Wattíe and daub waíí 15
Wooden píank waíí 20
Bríck or Log waíí 50
Oak or Stone waíí 70
Thíck Oak or Stone waíí *
A * Toughness Ratíng índícates somethíng whích ís too
tough to be damaged by anythíng short of shíps cannon.
Assume that a cannon wííí automatícaííy break a * ob|ect,
but anythíng eíse wííí |ust bounce off harmíessíy.
Note that shíps have theír own specíaí ruíes for
determíníng damage from attacks made agaínst them,
whích can be found ín the íífe aboard shíp sectíon of these
ruíes.
2e"airin# 'bBects
Broken ob|ects can be repaíred wíth successfuí Smíthíng
or Craftíng checks. Each check requíres one hours work
and the DIFF equaís the amount the damage ínfíícted
exceeded the ob|ects TR by.
16
For example, if an .: *& ob5ect took %& damage you
would need a successful !IFF #& check to fix it.
The tabíe beíow endeavours to summaríse the
skííí(specíaííty) check requíred to fíx a gíven type of ob|ect
and the tooís needed for the task. More ínformatíon on the
tooís can be found ín the Money and Equípment sectíon of
the ruíes.
Materia- S6i--<s"ecia-ity= *oo-s
Metaí ítem Smíthíng(bíacksmíthíng) Smíths tooís
Gun Smíthíng(gunsmíthíng) Gunsmíths
tooís
Cíoth ítem Craftíng(taííoríng) Taííors tooís
Leather
ítem
Craftíng(íeather workíng) Leather
workers tooís
Wood Craftíng(carpentry) Carpenters
tooís
Stone Craftíng(masonry) Masons tooís
Ceramícs Craftíng(pottery) Potters tooís
Cíockworks
or Locks
Smíthíng(artífíce) Artífícers
tooís
Where an ob|ect ís made of more than one materíaí (such
as an axe wíth a wooden handíe) make a separate check
to repaír each kínd of materíaí.
&"erience
Experíence Poínts (XP) are earned through roíepíayíng
and used to advance characters. A píayer wííí typícaííy
earn 5-10 XP per sessíon. XP are used to buy Advances.
The fírst advance for a character costs 10 XP, the second
costs 20XP, the thírd 30XP, the fourth 40XP and so on.
Each tíme you buy an advance, you can do one of the
foííowíng
• Acquíre a new skííí.
• Acquíre a new specíaííty ín a skííí you aíready
have.
• Add +10 to a specíaííty*
• Acquíre an extra drama poínt.
You can advance a specíaííty so you get a +10 on checks
usíng that specíaííty. You can advance a specíaííty wíth a
+10 bonus to +20, +20 to +30 and so on.
%+ardin# &"erience Points
The easíest way to award XP to a character ís to ask the
foííowíng fíve questíons. Award them two XP for each
questíon whích they can answer "yes" to, one XP for each
questíon whích they can answer "maybe" to and no XP for
each one they answer "no" to.
• Díd the píayer turn up for the game?
• Díd the píayer roíepíay theír character weíí?
• Díd the píayer contríbute to the overaíí quaííty
and/or en|oyment of the game by everyone?
• Díd the character perform any noteworthy feats
ín the sessíon?
• Díd the crew achíeve theír goaís for the sessíon?
%#e
Pírates and Prívateers ís very generous when ít comes to
handííng age. Once a character ís pasty fífty they shouíd
make a roíí every year, on theír bírthday.
If they roíí doubíes íess than or equaí to theír Age, they
díe of naturaí causes duríng the foííowíng year. If they roíí
doubíes greater than theír Age, they survíve but íose one
skííí or specíaííty of theír choíce (to represent the graduaí
decííne of theír facuítíes wíth age).
For example, if a (& year old character rolled )), they
would die of something in the coming year. If they rolled
(( they would not die, but would lose one skill or
speciality, representing their diminishing faculties as they
age.
a
1=
G-ossary
Abíe Seaman Knowíedgeabíe saííor.
Afore To the front of the shíp. As ín "Enemy
shíp Afore Captaín!"
Aft To the rear of the shíp.
Ahoy A saííor's caíí to draw attentíon.
Aíoft Hígh ín the masts or ríggíng.
Amídshíps In the míddíe of the shíp.
Anchor An íron or bronze grapneí shaped
devíce whích ís tossed overboard and
attached to the shíp by a heavy ííne.
The anchor snags on the bottom and
prevents the shíp dríftíng away.
Anchors Aweígh! A phrase often caííed when the anchor
ís thrown overboard.
Artícíes Contract sígned by pírates or
prívateers when sígníng wíth a shíp. It
stated the ruíes as weíí as shares of
profíts.
Astern Behínd.
Avast Stop
Baííast Heavy materíaís at the bottom of a
shíp used to keep the shíp upríght.
Bar Shaííow water ín entrance to harbour.
Barque Three-masted shíp.
Beam Wídth of shíp.
Bear Away Change dírectíon to saíí before the
wínd.
Beíayíng Pín A wooden or metaí bar to whích a
rope can be fastened.
Beíow Decks The area ínsíde the shíp. The reguíar
saííors and mídshípman síept beíow
decks.
Bííges Bottom compartment of shíp, usuaííy
fíííed wíth waste water.
Bíack |ack A íeather tankard made stíff wíth a
coatíng of tar. Used by docksíde pubs
and taverns to serve wíne and beer.
Aíso a term used for a short weíghted
íeather cíub (tarred) usíng to stríke
bíows to the head to knock out
peopíe.
Bíow Short, íntense gaíe or storm.
Boardíng The actíon of movíng aíongsíde
another shíp and sendíng saííors
across to "board" ít. The term
orígínates ín the use of wooden píanks
(boards) between two shíps to aííow
easíer access.
Boardíng Nets Nets strung out from shíp's síde to
stop boardíng.
Boardíng Píke A two-handed tooí used to grappíe an
enemy shíp and puíí aíong síde.
Basícaííy íts a wooden poíe wíth a
hook on the end.
Boatswaín or
Bosun
The Warrant Offícer ín charge of saíís,
ríggíng, anchors and assocíated gear.
Booty Term for profíts taken from píunder.
Boucan French word for a grííí used to smoke
meat. The word buccaneer came from
boucan. Smokíng meat for saíe to
passíng shíps was common from
about 1620 to 1670. Men were
íííegaííy huntíng and smokíng the
meat untíí the Spanísh cracked down
on them. Many took up píratíng sínce
theír ííveííhood was over. These men
at the tíme were known as
Boucaníers.
Bow or fore The front end of a shíp
Bowíínes Ropes attached to saíís to puíí them
forward.
Bowsprít Spar at the front of a shíp.
Box Hauí Sharp turníng of a shíp.
Brace Rope used to hoíd dírectíon of a saíí.
Brígantíne Two-masted shíp.
Bríng To Síowíng a shíp so that ít aímost stops
by headíng ít ínto the wínd.
Broadsíde The fíríng of aíí guns on one síde of a
shíp.
Buccaneer The Term orígínaííy appííed to the
hunters of wííd oxen and pígs on the
ísíand of Híspaníoía, but íater ít was
used to descríbe the pírates and
prívateers who píundered the
shíppíng and coastaí towns ín the
West Indíes and on the coasts of
South and Centraí Ameríca ín the
second haíf of the seventeenth
century.
Buíkhead A heavy "waíí" whích dívídes the
ínsíde of a shíp ínto separate
partítíons.
Buíwarks The píankíng or woodwork aíong the
sídes of a shíp, above her upper deck
to prevent seas washíng over the
gunwaíes and to prevent persons
from faíííng or beíng washed
overboard.
Bumboo A míxture of rum, water, sugar, and
nutmeg. Favoured among West
Indíans as weíí as buccaneers and
pírates. And for your roíepíayíng
en|oyment, here ís a reaí-woríd recípe
for bumboo:
In a taíí gíass put íce, sííced íímes, a
síug of dark rum & top wíth seven up,
then add (grated) nutmeg.
Cabíe A term for heavy rope.
Cabíe (íength) A íength of 240 yards.
Cannon A muzzíe íoadíng gunpowder weapon
whích hurís a metaí baíí (or other
ammunítíon) at hígh speed at a
target.
Canvas The materíaí saíís are made of.
Capstan Cyííndrícaí devíce that saííors ínserted
poíes ínto to heíp hauí up cabíes.
Captaín The person who ís ín charge of a
1>
vesseí and íegaííy responsíbíe for ít
and íts occupants
Careen Lyíng a shíp on íts síde to aííow íts huíí
to be cíeaned. The shíp ís bought ínto
shaííow water, then when the tíde
goes ít out ít roíís sídeways, aííowíng
ít to be cíeaned. On the next hígh tíde
ít can be fíoated off agaín.
Carronade A short, fat, cannon. It has a shorter
range than a standard cannon, but
packs more punch.
Cat'O'NíneTaíís A whíp made from knotted ropes,
used to punísh crewmen.
Cauíkíng Usíng unpícked rope and pítch to seaí
gaps ín píanks. The cauíkíng on a shíp
had to be reguíaríy repíaced as ít
wore out.
Chapíaín A príest or cíergyman servíng a group
of peopíe who are not organízed as a
míssíon or church. Pírates rareíy had a
Chapíaín, but most warshíps and
some prívateers díd.
Chaser A smaíí caííbre gun mounted on the
fore or aft of the shíp, used to fíre on
targets who are foííowíng you, or who
you are foííowíng.
Cíose-Hauíed Ríggíng a shíp to saíí dírectíy ínto the
wínd.
Cog A shíp deveíoped ín the medíevaí
períod, partíy to resíst attacks by
íongshíps (as used by the Víkíngs). It
had very hígh sídes to prevent
boardíng and a raísed bow and stern
where archers wouíd be statíoned.
Coíours The fíag fíown by a shíp to show her
natíonaííty.
Commíssíons Governments wouíd íssue these
íícenses to prívateers. They
authorízed raíds on foreígn shíppíng.
Cooper A barreí maker. Very ímportant
aboard shíp as most suppííes were
stored ín barreís.
Corsaírs A Pírate or Prívateer operatíng ín the
Medíterranean. The most famous
corsaírs were those based on the
Barbary Coast of North Afríca who
were authorízed by theír governments
to attack the merchant shíppíng of the
Chrístían countríes.
Covent Garden A píazza and market ín the heart of
London, modeííed on the Píazza's of
Veníce and other Itaíían cítíes.
Crew A group of píayer characters workíng
together on the same shíp, often
caííed a party ín other roíepíayíng
games.
Crímp A person who ís trícked or press
ganged ínto servíng on a crew.
Crows nest A basket at the top of the maín mast
where a íook-out ís statíoned. The
heíght gíves them the best possíbíe
vísíbíííty.
Cutíass A short, heavy, curved sword. The
preferred weapon of many a pírate.
Cutter Síngíe-masted smaíí shíp.
Davy |ones'
Locker
Accordíng to saííor's íore, Davy |ones
ís an evíí spírít ín the sea. Hís íocker
was the ocean where he receíved
dead saííors.
Deck The exposed area of the shíp where
the men díd theír work.
Dírk A íong thín knífe. It was used for
fíghtíng ín cíose quarters, as weíí as
cuttíng rope.
Doubíoon A goíd coín mínted by Spaín or
Spanísh coíoníes. Worth about seven
weeks pay for an average saííor
En Fíute A warshíp wíthout some, or aíí, of íts
cannons.
Fathom A measure of síx feet, used to
descríbe the depth of water.
Fígurehead A carved fígure perched on the front
or bow of saíííng shíps that heíped
estabíísh a shíp's ídentíty. Thís aíso
refers to the captaín when the spouse
ís on board. Hístorícaííy the
fígurehead was credíted wíth the
abíííty to ward off evíí spíríts (many
Medíterranean shíps have eyes
paínted on the prow, whích were
beííeved to ward off the evíí eye).
Fíag Offícer A seníor offícer ín charge of a
squadron or fíeet (usuaííy an Admíraí).
A fíag offícer has theír own personaí
fíag whích ís fíown from the mast of
the shíp they are on board.
Fíagshíp The shíp whích the commander of a
fíeet or squadron operates from. It
fííes the commanders personaí
pennant (hís fíag), hence Fíagshíp.
Fííbustíer French term for pírates duríng the
Goíden Age of píracy.
Fíuke The portíon of an anchor that dígs
secureíy ínto the bottom, hoídíng the
boat ín píace; aíso a term for any
occasíon when the anchors dígs ín on
the fírst try.
Fore Front of a shíp.
Forecastíe Smaíí deck at front of shíp, usuaííy
raísed above the maín deck. In
ancíent tímes the forecastíe was
where archers were statíoned.
Foredeck The forward part of the maín deck.
Freebooter Another term for pírate.
Gaff Yard supportíng top of a saíí.
Gasket Píatted rope hoídíng saíís to yards.
Gíbbet A wooden frame from whích dead
pírates were hung, often ín a metaí
cage especíaííy fítted for the dead
man. Thís was done as a warníng to
others who wouíd thínk of takíng up a
career ín píracy.
13
Go on the
account
To embark on a píratícaí cruíse
Grog Brítísh navaí seamen receíved a
portíon of ííquor every day. In 1740,
Admíraí Edward Vernon ordered the
rum to be dííuted wíth water. Vernon's
níckname was Oíd Grogram, and the
beverage was gíven the name grog ín
theír dísdaín for Vernon.
Grommet A name Brítísh seamen gave to an
apprentíce saííor, or shíp's boy. The
word comes from the Spanísh word
grumete, whích has the same
meaníng.
Gun A generíc term for any fírearm.
Incíudes cannons, chasers and
carronades.
Haíyards Ropes to raíse or íower saíís.
Hauí Off Move away.
Heave To Stoppíng a shíp by headíng ít ínto the
wínd.
Heeí The term used to descríbe a shíps
íeaníng to one síde under the
ínfíuence of wínd and saíí (a shíp
heeííng to starboard ís íeaníng to the
ríght).
Huíí The maín body of a shíp, buíít out of
heavy wooden tímbers.
|íb Tríanguíar saíí at prow of shíp.
|oííy Boat A smaíí craft used by the shíps crew
for generaí work. The term "|oííy
boat" comes from the crafts use as a
ferry to take the crew ashore for rest
and recreatíon.
|oííy Roger The |oííy Roger was the pírate's fíag. It
had a bíack background and a symboí
(usuaííy whíte) symboíízíng death. The
|oííy roger came ínto use about 1700.
Before then pírates used the coíors of
theír natíonaííty. Oníy Edward Engíand
fíew a fíag wíth the skuíí and
crossbones motíf, but aíí those fíyíng
the |oííy Roger had symboís sígnífyíng
eíther death, víoíence or íímíted tíme.
The varíatíons were uníímíted.
Keeí Lowest íengthwíse runníng tímber of
shíp.
Land Ho! Tradítíonaí caíííng when a saííor síghts
íand.
Landíubber Lubber ís an oíd síang word for
someone who ís stupíd and íazy.
Saííors added íand to ít to descríbe
someone stupíd about the ways of íífe
aboard a shíp.
Landsman Inexperíenced saííor.
Larboard Port.
Lateen saíí A tríanguíar saíí.
Lee Downwínd. The íee síde of a shíp ís
that whích ís downwínd, and a fíeet ín
a íee posítíon ís downwínd from theír
enemy.
Leeward The dírectíon whích the wínd ís
bíowíng to. Shíps under saíí heeí to
íeeward and thís reduces the
effectíveness of guns on the íeeward
síde. The íeeward síde of a shíp ís the
síde sheítered from the wínd.
Letters of
Marque
A commíssíon or íícense íssued by the
government authorízíng seízure of
enemy property. In Brítaín and her
coíoníes the íetter was íssued by the
sovereígn, the Lord Hígh Admíraí, or a
Coíoníaí Governor. Such íetters were
purchased by entrepreneurs, a
percentage of theír prízes was kept by
the íssuíng authoríty and any
remaínder was spíít eveníy between
the crew of the prívateer.
Líght cannon A game term used to descríbe a
smaííer caííbre cannon, normaííy oníy
found on merchant shíps.
Log-ííne A knotted rope and píece of wood that
measures a shíp's speed.
Long boat A íong rowíng boat, often caííed a
pínnace.
Luff Turn a shíp cíoser to wínd.
Lug saíí A four-síded saíí.
Lugger A smaíí two or three masted shíp
íntended for físhíng, coastíng or
saíííng.
Lyíng To Posítíon a shíp ís ín after beíng
brought to.
Marííng spíke A poínted íron spíke used to separate
strands of rope.
Maroon Pírates used marooníng as an act of
puníshment. A transgressor of theír
codes wouíd be strípped and íeft upon
an ísoíated ísíand wíth oníy a few
suppííes, íf any at aíí. Most
transgressors preferred a quíck death
to marooníng, for ít couíd mean
starvatíon or worse, ísoíatíon for
years, untíí rescue or death.
Mast Upríght beams whích saíís were
suspended from. The number of
masts varíed and theír names
íncíuded. The maínmast (íargest mast
centraííy íocated), fore-mast (front of
shíp), aft-mast (rear of maínmast),
mízzenmast (usuaííy íateen-rígged,
rear and sometímes front of shíp,
used to ímprove steeríng), bowsprít
(extended out at an angíe over the
bow).
Master at Arms The offícer ín charge of the shíps
weaponry. Often a maríne and ín
charge of boardíng actíons as weíí.
Mate The word mate comes from the word
meat, and orígínaííy meant peopíe
who shared food. Later ít came to be
known as a companíon. Mate was aíso
the títíe of an offícer aboard navaí and
merchant shíps. The mate oversaw
the saííors, ensuríng that the captaín's
orders were carríed out. He aíso was
14
responsíbíe for stowíng cargo and
organízíng the crew's work.
Mídshípmen |uníor-rankíng offícers who wouíd
assíst ín the controí of the crew. Most
mídshípman were teenagers, those
survívíng beíng promoted to
ííeutenant ín a few years.
Mízzen Rear of a shíp.
No Purchase, No
Pay
A term used to mean "no píunder, no
pay". At the tíme, the Engíísh word
purchase referred to any píunder,
íoot, or booty. A pírate saíííng under
thís term (ín the shíp's artícíes) wouíd
have to seíze íoot or forfeít pay.
Oakum A preparatíon of tarred fíbre whích ís
packed between the píanks of a shíps
huíí to stop water íeakíng ín (the
packíng process ís referred to as
"cauíkíng").
Ordínary
Seaman
Saííor wíth íímíted experíence.
Oríop deck The íowest deck on a shíp.
Packet Smaíí, fast shíp for sendíng
despatches and orders.
Peg Leg Thís was a níckname, gíven by pírates
to those who had repíaced a íeg wíth
a wooden prosthetíc. The Spanísh
name ís Píé de Paío, the Dutch ís
Houtebeen.
Peso (Píece of
Eíght)
The peso was the maín coín ín the
Spanísh-Amerícan coíoníes. It was
sííghtíy íarger than the 19th century
U.S. sííver doííar. Often the coín wouíd
be cut ínto 8 sectíons, each one
representíng 1 reaíe. Hence the name
"píece of eíght". The Spanísh
government mínted an ímmense
amount of these coíns and they were
wídeíy círcuíated.
Petty Offícer Incíuded gunner's mates,
quartermasters, master-at-arms,
carpenter, bosun and cooper, the
shíp's master, chapíaín and surgeon
Pícaroon Term meaníng both pírate and síaver.
Pínnace A shíp's boat, usuaííy towed behínd
the shíp whííst at sea.
Píunder Goods or money obtaíned íííegaííy, of
the act of acquíríng goods or money
íííegaííy.
Píyíng Turn to wíndward.
Ponton An Engíísh príson huík, or converted
shíp huíí where captured pírates were
heíd.
Port The íeft síde of a shíp, íf you are
facíng forward.
Press Gang A group of saííors who "recruít" for
theír shíp usíng víoíence and
íntímídatíon
Prívateer An armed shíp or persons aboard,
whích are authorízed by a commíssíon
or "íetter of marque" from a
government to capture the merchant
shíps of an enemy natíon.
Príze A príze was a shíp whích was
captured. The word ís deríved from
the íatín pretíum, meaníng príze,
vaíue, reward, wages.
Ouarterdeck As the need for castíes (raísed
sectíons at fore and aft to act as fíríng
píatforms for archers) was dímíníshed
so too was theír síze. Fore and aft-
castíes were repíaced wíth the terms
quarter-deck and fore-deck.
Ouartermaster Under pírates, the quartermaster had
an aímost equaí amount of authoríty
as the captaín. He was eíected and as
such was the crew's voíce. If a shíp
was captured, the quartermaster
aímost aíways took over the captured
shíp. He maíntaíned order, settíed
arguments, and dístríbuted suppííes.
The quartermaster was ín charge of
aíí booty gaíned and dístríbuted ít
among the crew.
Rake Fíríng down the íength of a shíp from
a posítíon off of íts bow or stern. A
good rakíng shot wííí tear straíght
through the shíps beíow decks, ííkeíy
causíng massíve damage.
Raníeígh
Gardens
A píeasure garden ín London, símííar
to Vauxhaíí gardens and Covent
garden.
Ratíínes Ropes attached to a shíp's shrouds
that are used as íadders.
Reef Lessen saíí area by tyíng parts of ít to
the mast.
Ríggíng The part of a shíp whích supports and
operates the saíís. Aíso a verb whích
means "to put the saíís and íínes on
the masts".
Royaís Square saíís síttíng beneath the
topgaííants.
Saíí A íarge sheet of canvas whích ís
attached to the mast. When the wínd
bíows ít catches the saíí and some of
the wínds kínetíc energy ís
transferred to the shíp ín the form of
movement.
Saíííng The art of gettíng from A to B ín a saíí
dríven shíp, síowíy, whííst avoídíng
starvatíon, dehydratíon, dísease,
gettíng íost, mutíny, the navy and bad
weather.
Schooner A shíp wíth two masts, where the fore
mast ís shorter than the aft mast.
Scuppers Hoíes píerced ín deck near buíwarks
to aííow surpíus water to draín off.
Scurvy A dísease resuítíng from a vítamín C
defícíency whích resuíts ín weakness,
anaemía, and spongy gums.
Sea Rover A pírate or pírate's shíp.
Sheets Ropes attached to bottom corners of
saíís.
1?
Shíps Artícíes A document whích governs the
conduct of a prívate crew and shíp.
Anyone servíng aboard a shíp must
foííow the artícíes or face puníshment.
The artícíes were usuaííy íaíd down by
the shíps master (íts owner) and the
captaín.
Shíver me
tímbers
An ímprecatíon used by "stage-
saííors" presumabíy of nautícaí orígín,
shíver here ís used ín the sense of "to
shatter" or "spíínter ínto píeces", the
tímbers of a shíp.
Shrouds Support ropes attached to the masts.
Square-Rígged A shíp rígged wíth square saíís at íts
bow.
Starboard The ríght síde of a shíp, íf you are
facíng forward
Stays Forwards and backwards support
ropes for the masts.
Stern or aft Rear of shíp.
Stríke the
Coíours
To hauí down a shíp's fíag as a sígnaí
of surrender.
Surgeon The offícer responsíbíe for the
medícaí weíí beíng of the men.
Swab A swab ís a mop made from rope used
to cíean the deck. It ís aíso an ínsuít
íntended to show contempt for a
crude, ígnorant person.
Sweet trade The career of píracy.
Tack Way of a shíp zíg-zaggíng ínto the
wínd or turníng ít by steeríng to
wíndward.
Tar A pítchy substance used for varíous
purposes aboard shíp (such as
cauíkíng or protectíng surfaces from
water). Aíso a coííoquíaí term for a
Brítísh seaman.
Top Píatform around the mast.
Topgaííant Híghest of the three spars used to
make a mast.
Under saíí A shíp whích has íts saíís up and ís
movíng ís "under saíí"
Under way A shíp whích ís "under way" ís
movíng.
Vauxhaíí
Gardens
Vauxhaíí Gardens was a píeasure
garden ín London, one of the most
ímportant. Píeasure gardens were the
períod equívaíent of modern
amusement parks, where peopíe
wouíd come to promenade, díne and
en|oy musíc and entertaínments ín
the open aír.
Waík the Píank Waíkíng the Píank referred to
bííndfoídíng a prísoner, tyíng hís
hands to hís sídes, and forcíng hím to
waík a píank that was suspended out
over the sea. It ís fíctíonaí, the work of
19th century artísts.
Wear Turn a shíp by movíng prow ín
dírectíon of the wínd.
Weather Upwínd. Opposíte of íee, the weather
síde of a shíp ís that whích ís facíng
ínto the wínd. A fíeet ín a weather
posítíon ís upwínd from theír enemy.
Weather Gauge To "have the weather gauge" over an
enemy means you are upwínd of them
at the start of an engagement, a
ma|or advantage ín saíí dríven shíps.
Wíndage How far a shíp ís bíown off course by
the wínd.
Wíndward The dírectíon from whích the wínd ís
bíowíng.
Xebec A smaíí three masted shíp (frígate or
smaííer ín game terms) wíth íateen
and square saíís.
Yard Horízontaí spar that hoíds up the saíís.
Yardarm Outer sectíons of the yard.
2.
,ll Gentlemen 7olunteers
2eaman and a!le !odied 9andsman$ #ho #ish to ac@uire Aiches and
*onour$ are invited to repair on !oard the Privateer ship of +ar$ no#
laying in 8harleston *ar!our) mounting Thirty 8arriage Guns$ #ith
8arronades$ s#ivels$ B !ound on a 8ruiCe to the 2outh#ard for four
"onths against the French and all *is "a(estyDs enemies$ and then to
return to this *ar!our'
,ll volunteers #ill !e received on !oard the said shipEor !y the 8aptain at
his rendeCvous at the Blac Dog$ "r' Proud%s Tavern near the
8handlery$ #here they #ill meet #ith all due encouragement$ and the !est
treatment) Proper ,dvance #ill !e given'
-January 12$ 133?
21
Introduction
Thís sectíon teíís you how to create a character to píay
Prívateers and Pírates.
Character Creation
Character creatíon ís very símpíe. There ís a standard
character sheet presented at the end of these ruíes to
make íífe easíer for the GM and píayers.
1. Fírst of aíí decíde on a character concept that fíts ínto
the type of game you are píayíng.
2. Next decíde on your name, natíonaííty, reíígíon, age
and gender. Characters ín thís game may come from
any background. They have íeft theír prevíous íífe
behínd to saíí the seas of hígh adventure!
3. Now choose your socíaí status (Workíng cíass, Míddíe
cíass or Upper cíass) and ex-mííítary rank (íf any).
4. Next, choose a number of skííís píus specíaíítíes equaí
to the tens vaíue of your Age doubíed.
5. You may then take one or more Fíaws.
6. Make up a number of dístínctíve features equaí to the
tens vaíue of your Age.
7. Note down that you have a Drama score of one for
each Fíaw taken, píus three íf you are Workíng cíass,
two íf you are Míddíe cíass or one íf you are Upper
cíass.
8. If you are Workíng cíass you begín píay wíth d100
Shííííngs (read the híghest díce as tens).
9. If you are Míddíe cíass you begín píay wíth d100
pounds (read the híghest díce as tens).
10. If you are Upper cíass you begín píay wíth d100 x20
pounds (read the híghest díce as tens).
11. Thís money may be used to buy any startíng
equípment before píay begíns.
12. The crew begíns wíth a síngíe shíp gíven them by the
GM. Normaííy thís ís a síoop or bríg (píayers choíce
whích) and a crew of twenty fíve saííors.
That's ít, you now have a character and can begín píay.
Dífferent genres may íntroduce addítíonaí eíements to
thís process.
j
Character Conce"ts
To gíve you some heíp, here's a ííst of some possíbíe
character concepts:
Haíf deaf master gunner.
War weary soídíer who has no other skííís exceptíng
fíghtíng.
Grízzíed oíd war veteran turned mercenary.
Sadístíc psychopath who en|oys hurtíng peopíe.
Freed/Escaped Negro síave.
Dísgraced Navaí Captaín.
Ex-Navaí Captaín wíth a drug habít.
Arístocrat who íost everythíng ín a game of cards and
now seeks to get theír money back.
Gírí dísguísed as a boy, fíed from her stífííng famííy.
Boy from a poor famííy wantíng to make hís fortune.
Romantíc ídeaííst who fancíes beíng a pírate.
Smart busíness man who wants to get rích quíck.
Adventurous nobíeman, out for the thrííí of ít.
0istincti,e .eatures
Each character ís descríbed by a number of dístínctíve
features equaí to the tens vaíue of theír Age score.
For example, if the characters 6ge is )& they hae three
distinctie features.
Dístínctíve features are the fírst thíngs peopíe notíce
about a character when they encounter them. Some
exampíes foííow:
Scar on cheek Branded
Whíte haír Hígh pítched voíce
Buígíng muscíes Very deep voíce
Rotten teeth Phíegmatíc
Píercíng bíue eyes Raven bíack haír
Long haír Hígh cheekbones
Shaved or Baíd head Míssíng tooth
Tattooed face Goíd tooth
Míssíng fínger and so on....
Note that a character does not gaín addítíonaí dístínctíve
features when theír Age íncreases duríng píay. Dístínctíve
features are oníy gaíned or íost through events duríng
roíepíay.
5ationa-ity and 2e-i#ion
For the purposes of the game characters are, by defauít,
of Engíísh, Scots, Amerícan or Weísh natíonaííty and of the
Chrístían reíígíon. Thís ís a game conveníence because
most píayers of Prívateers and Pírates are ííkeíy to be of
Brítísh or Amerícan orígín. Characters are fíuent ín a
number of íanguages equaí to the tens vaíue of theír Age
score. Some other natíonaíítíes couíd be;
French Russían Austrían
Spanísh Portugese Swedísh
Itaíían Chínese Norwegían
Dutch Afrícan Danísh
German Arabíc Turkísh
22
:ome Port
You do not need to choose a home port for your crew, but
ís a níce touch to do so. Your home port ís símpíy the
píace where you spend most of your tíme when not out
píratíng.
Socia- Status
When a character ís fírst created you shouíd decíde on
theír socíaí rank. In the ordered socíetíes of ma|or natíons,
socíaí rank ís very ímportant, but on the hígh sea's and
wííd ports where pírates and prívateers tend to be found,
ít becomes íess of an íssue.
You may aíso wísh to gíve your character mííítary rank, to
índícate a prevíous career ín the army or navy. Píayer
characters are cívíííans so they must be retíred from
servíce (whether honourabíy or díshonourabíy ís up to the
píayer concerned).
Bear ín mínd that pírates are, by defínítíon, wanted
crímínaís, regardíess of theír orígínaí socíaí background. If
you are píayíng a game where characters are pírates, a
character may come from whatever socíaí cíass they wísh
and may or may not have served ín the mííítary.
Prívateers are not crímínaís, at íeast not ín the country
who's íetter of marque they are operatíng under. In other
countríes they wííí be treated |ust ííke any other pírate.
Characters of the upper cíasses who have sunk to
prívateeríng are ííkeíy to be eíther bankrupt or
ímpoveríshed, and are pursuíng prívateeríng as way to
get rích, or are thrííí seekers. Eíther way, such characters
do not have access to the usuaí weaíth and resources
assocíated wíth theír cíass. In the case of thrííí seekers, ít
can be assumed that they have been dísowned by theír
famíííes for theír wayward behavíour.
Socia- Status in P-ay
A character choíce of socíaí status determínes how many
Drama poínts they start píay wíth and how money they
start píay wíth.
Beyond that, socíaí status shouíd be consídered more of a
dístínctíve feature than anythíng eíse. As a generaí ruíe of
thumb, a characters socíaí status shouíd heíp them as
often as ít hínders them. Beíng the fífth Earí of Huntíngdon
may wín you favour wíth a governor, but ít's ííkeíy to
resuít ín merchants overchargíng you and other pírates
tryíng to kídnap you for ransom. Líkewíse, Smeííy |ím the
crímínaí may have a íot of kudos wíth hís feííow pírates,
but better watch out for the íaw.
From a GM's standpoínt, keep an eye on how píayers use
theír socíaí status and baíance your adventures
accordíngíy. If a character ínsísts of swanníng around wíth
aírs and graces and usíng theír socíaí rank a íot, the GM
shouíd ensure to penaííse them accordíngíy íater.
In maths terms, socíaí status ís a zero-sum game.
&"-anation of Socia- Status
Thís sectíon gíves a bríef overvíew of the socíety of the
períod. Socíety has fíve socíaí ranks:
• (Crímínaí or Outcast)
• Workíng cíass
• Míddíe cíass
• Upper cíass
Crímínaí or Outcast ísn't reaííy a socíaí cíass, ínstead ít ís
a current status of an índívíduaí. They stííí posses theír
natíve cíass.
Crímínaís are |ust that, wanted crímínaís. Aíí pírates are,
by defínítíon, crímínaís, the oníy "safe" píaces for them
beíng pírate ports.
Outcasts have been cast out of theír natíve socíety but
are not crímínaís. They are ííkeíy to be heavííy pre|udíced
agaínst and treated very badíy by everyone. Síaves are of
the outcast socíaí rank.
The workíng cíass are the great ma|oríty of the
popuíatíon, pooríy educated and íívíng ín poverty. In the
earíy campaígn the ma|oríty of workíng cíass peopíe work
the íand stííí. In a íate campaígn the índustríaí revoíutíon
has begun and more and more of the workíng cíass ííve ín
the stínkíng towns, workíng ín the factoríes. Artísans, such
as craftspeopíe, are typícaííy workíng cíass.
The míddíe cíass are the busíness and professíonaí
peopíes of a socíety. They are the empíoyers and skíííed
workers, the entrepreneurs, íawyers, doctors and other
professíonaís. The míddíe cíass are the drívíng force
behínd economíc growth ín most socíetíes.
The Upper cíass constítutes the gentry and arístocracy.
The gentry are the tradítíonaí smaíí íand owners,
partícuíaríy ín ruraí areas where they are the íarge
farmers and íords of the manor. Members of the gentry
are typícaííy dístínguíshed from the míddíe cíasses by
theír hoídíng of títíes, usuaííy Kníghthoods (makíng them a
Kníght) or Baronetcíes (makíng them a Baronet, a seníor
rank kníght), whích entítíe them to be addressed as Sír or
Lady. The chíídren of kníghts and barons are entítíed to
be addressed as "the Ríght Honourabíe" untíí the ínherít
theír fuíí títíe.
The arístocracy are born and bred to ruíe. Theír weaíth
comes from theír íand hoídíngs and few engage ín trade
of any kínd. Arístocrats are peers of the reaím, hoídíng the
títíe of Baron or hígher. Thís entítíes them to a seat ín the
house of Lords (ín Brítaín at íeast). Members of the
arístocracy are aíways addressed as Lord or Lady. Prínces
and Príncesses are "your Híghness" and a Kíng or Oueen
ís "your Ma|esty". The son or daughter of a títíed
character has a courtesy títíe one step íower than theír
parents. So the son of an Earí has the courtesy títíe of
Víscount untíí they ínherít.
&"-anation of Mi-itary 2an6
Characters may wísh to have pursued a mííítary career
príor to begínníng píay. The two servíces are the Army
and the Navy. Navy characters may have been ín the
Navy proper or Marínes (ín effect, shípboard soídíers).
Characters are assumed to have been honourabíy
díscharged, aíthough they can have díshonourabíy
díscharged íf you wísh.
25
*he Socia- 'rder
The tabíe beíow shows specífíc socíaí cíasses and ranks ín
order from íowest (at the top of the tabíe) to híghest (at
the bottom).
Socia- 2an6 5a,a- 2an6s %rmy 2an6s
Crímínaí Ordínary Seaman Prívate
Outcast Abíe Seaman Lance-Corporaí
Lower Workíng
Cíass
Leadíng Seaman Corporaí
Míddíe Workíng
Cíass
Petty Offícer Sergeant
Upper Workíng
Cíass
Chíef Petty Offícer Sergeant Ma|or
Lower Míddíe Cíass Mídshípman Second Líeutenant
Upper Míddíe Cíass Líeutenant Líeutenant
Kníght Líeutenant-Commander Captaín
Baronet Commander Ma|or
Baron/ Baroness |uníor Post Captaín Líeutenant-Coíoneí
Víscount/
Víscountess
Seníor Post Captaín Coíoneí
Earí/Countess Commodore Brígadíer
Marquess/
Marchíoness
Rear Admíraí Ma|or Generaí
Duke/ Duchess Více Admíraí Líeutenant Generaí
Prínce/ Príncess Admíraí Generaí
Kíng/Oueen Admíraí of the Fíeet Fíeíd Marshaí
%n &am"-e of Character Creation
Startíng wíth the concept of "war weary soídíer" Andy
sets out to create a new character.
He decídes that hís character wííí be Engíísh, 35 years oíd,
protestant and maíe. He ís workíng cíass and attaíned the
rank of Sergeant ín the army before he retíred. Andy gíves
hís character the name "|ohn Smíth".
Next he chooses síx skííís and specíaíítíes (síx ís doubíe
the tens vaíue of |ohn's age of 35). He takes the foííowíng
skííís.
• Heaíth
• Shootíng
• Wííí
• Heaííng
• Tactícs
• Gamíng
Andy has chosen not to take any specíaíítíes, feeííng that
|ohn ís the kínd of guy who's "been around" but who has
never taken the tíme to reaííy concentrate on masteríng
any partícuíar abííítíes.
To refíect thís he chooses the "Drífter" fíaw and comes up
wíth the foííowíng three dístínguíshíng features:
• Sííght íímp from an oíd buííet wound ín hís íeft
íeg
• Baíd
• Goíd earríng ín hís íeft ear
|ohn's startíng Drama score ís four (three for beíng
Workíng cíass píus one for hís Fíaw) and he begíns píay
wíth no XP, no wounds and no advances.
Fínaííy, Andy roíís the díce and reads the íowest as tens to
fínd out how much money |ohn begíns píay wíth. He roíís
37, gívíng |ohn 37 pounds to begín píay wíth.
S6i--s7 S"ecia-ities and .-a+s
The fuíí ííst of Skííís and Specíaíítíes whích are avaííabíe to
characters are presented beíow. The Skííís and
Specíaíítíes are organísed ínto four thematíc groups,
Brawn, Wíts, Knowíedge and Refíexes.
Each skííí has ít's specíaíítíes íísted under ít as buííet
poínts.
f
?ra+n S6i--s and S"ecia-ities
These Skííís and Specíaíítíes reíate to a characters
physícaí strength, fítness, heaíth and other bodííy
abííítíes.
%th-etics4 A character wíth thís skííí ís an accompííshed
athíete. Specíaíísatíons íncíude:
• S+immin#4 Make an Athíetícs(swímmíng) check
when tryíng to swím.
• Cum"in#4 Make an Athíetícs(|umpíng) check
when tryíng to |ump up, down or aíong.
• C-imbin#4 Make an Athíetícs(cíímbíng) check
when tryíng to cíímb somethíng.
• 2o+in#4 Make an Athíetícs(rowíng) check when
tryíng to row a boat.
.i#htin#4 A character wíth the Fíghtíng skííí ís a traíned
and experíenced cíose combatant. Thís skííí and ít's
attendant specíaíítíes ímprove your chance to hít and the
DIFF of you beíng hít whííst appropríateíy armed ín
combat. Specíaíísatíons íncíude:
• ?ra+-in#4 Make a Fíghtíng(brawííng) check
when attackíng wíth your barehands or wíth
brass knuckíes.
• 0a##er4 Make a Fíghtíng(dagger) check when
attackíng wíth a knífe or dagger.
• S+ord4 Make a Fíghtíng(sword) check when
attackíng wíth some kínd of sword.
• %&e4 Make a Fíghtíng(axe) check when attackíng
wíth some kínd of axe or axeííke weapon.
• ?-unt4 Make a Fíghtíng(bíunt) check when
attackíng wíth some kínd of bíunt weapon (such
as a cíub, mace or hammer).
• S"ear4 Make a Fíghtíng(spear) check when
attackíng wíth some kínd of spear.
:ea-th4 A character wíth the Heaíth skííí has a
remarkabíy robust constítutíon and íeveí of fítness.
Specíaíísatíons íncíude:
• Constitution4 Make a Heaíth(constítutíon) check
to resíst the effects of poísons or díseases.
• ndurance4 Make a Heaíth(endurance) check to
resíst the effects of fatígue or extremes of
cíímate.
• 2esi-ience4 Make a Heaíth(resíííence) check to
resíst damage and ín|uríes.
• Stren#th4 Make a Heaíth(strength) check when
tryíng to ííft somethíng, force somethíng open or
26
perform some símííar díspíay of raw strength.
• Gra""-in#4 Make a Heaíth(grappííng) check
when engaged ín grappíes, arm wrestíes and
wrestííng matches.
u
1its S6i--s and S"ecia-ities
These Skííís and Specíaíítíes reíate to how fast a character
thínks, theír natíve ínteííígence and awareness and theír
abíííty to ínteract wíth others.
%nima- :and-in#4 A character wíth the Anímaí handííng
skííí ís experíenced ín deaííng wíth anímaís.
Specíaíísatíons íncíude:
• 2idin#4 Make an Anímaí Handííng(rídíng) check
to controí an anímaí you are rídíng.
• 0ri,in#4 Make an Anímaí Handííng(drívíng)
check to controí a wagon, coach, píough or other
anímaí drawn vehícíe.
• :usbandry4 Make an Anímaí Handííng
(husbandry) check to díagnose anímaí ííínesses,
treat anímaís wounds or to know about
domestícated anímaís.
%rt4 A character wíth thís skííí ís an accompííshed artíst.
Specíaíítíes íncíude:
• 0ra+in#4 Make an Art(drawíng) check to draw a
pícture or evaíuate an exístíng pícture.
• Paintin#4 Make an Art(paíntíng) check to create
a paíntíng or evaíuate an exístíng paíntíng.
• Scu-"ture4 Make an Art(scuípture) check to
create a scuípture or evaíuate an exístíng
scuípture.
• 1ritin#4 Make an Art(wrítíng) check to create a
píece of wrítíng or evaíuate an exístíng píece of
wrítíng.
• Musica- Com"osition4 Make an Art(scuípture)
check to create a musícaí composítíon or
evaíuate an exístíng composítíon.
Gamin#4 A character wíth thís skííí ís a skíííed gamer, and
gambíer. Specíaíísatíons íncíude:
• Cards4 Make a Gamíng(cards) check to píay
poker.
• ?ettin#4 Make a Gamíng(bettíng) check to bet
effectíveíy.
• 0ice4 Make a Gamíng(díce) check to píay díce
games.
Inf-uence4 A character wíth thís skííí ís a skíííed
manípuíator of peopíe, wíth an ínstínctíve understandíng
of what makes peopíe tíck and how to puíí theír stríngs to
get what they want. Specíaíísatíons íncíude:
• Persuasion4 Make an Infíuence(persuasíon)
check to get peopíe to agree wíth you and heíp
you through reasoned argument, negotíatíon,
debate and emotíonaí appeaí.
• Seduction4 Make an Infíuence(seductíon) check
to get peopíe to assíst you through the promíse
of sexuaí favours.
• Intimidation4 Make an Infíuence (íntímídatíon)
check to get peopíe to obey you through fear of
the consequences of not doíng so.
• 0is#uise4 Make an Infíuence(dísguíse) check to
pretend to be someone eíse. A character wíth
thís specíaííty ís partícuíaríy adept ín the arts of
dísguíse. Thís íncíudes usíng makeup and
prosthetícs to change your appearance and aíso
techníques for changíng your gaít, mannerísms
and voíce.
Music4 You are a taíented musícían. Specíaíítíes íncíude:
• ?rass4 Make a musíc(brass) check to píay a
brass ínstrument (such as trumpets).
• Strin#ed4 Make a musíc(strínged) check to píay
a strínged ínstrument (such as the fíddíe).
• Percussion4 Make a musíc(percussíon) check to
píay a percussíve ínstrument (such as the
drums).
• 1ind4 Make a musíc(wínd) check to píay a wínd
ínstrument (such as a fíute).
• Piano4 Make a musíc(píano) check to píay a
píano or píano type ínstrument.
5otice4 A character wíth thís skííí has an astoníshíng
sensítívíty to theír surroundíngs, notícíng smaíí detaíís
both ín the envíronment and ín peopíes attítudes and
behavíours. Specíaíísatíons íncíude:
• Sea4 Make a Notíce(sea) check to notíce thíngs
whííst at sea.
• 1i-derness4 Make a Notíce(wííderness) check to
notíce thíngs whííst ín the wííds.
• 2ura-4 Make a Notíce(wííderness) check to notíce
thíngs ín ruraí areas.
• (rban4 Make a Notíce(wííderness) check to
notíce thíngs whííst ín settíements.
Sai-in#4 You are an expert saííor. Thís skííí covers gaííeys
are weíí as saíííng vesseís. Specíaíísatíons íncíude:
• Sea4 Make a Saíííng(sea) check to controí a shíp
at sea.
• Coasta-4 Make a Saíííng(coastaí) check to controí
a shíp ín coastaí waters.
• Piracy4 Make a Saíííng(píracy) check when tryíng
to fínd prey on the hígh seas.
1i--4 A character wíth thís skííí has a hígh degree of
mentaí seíf controí, abíe to stay focussed on actíons when
dístracted, resístant to ínfíuence by others and abíe to
hoíd theír ground ín the face of fríghteníng or shockíng
events. Specíaíísatíons íncíude: Resíst Infíuence, Resíst
Fear
• 2esistance4 Make a Wííí(resístance) check to
resíst Infíuence checks made by other
characters.
• ?ra,ery4 Make a Wííí(bravery) check to resíst
the effects of fear and terrífyíng sítuatíons.
b
2=
Dno+-ed#e S6i--s and S"ecia-ities
These Skííís and Specíaíítíes reíate to what a character
knows, refíectíng theír depth and breadth of knowíedge,
experíence and educatíon.
Smithin#4 A character wíth thís skííí ís skíííed ín workíng
wíth metaís.
• ?-ac6smithin#4 Make a Smíthíng
(bíacksmíthíng) check to evaíuate, make or
repaír metaí weapons ítems except swords.
• %rtifice4 Make a Smíthíng(artífíce) check to
evaíuate, make or repaír compíex devíces, such
as cíocks or íocks.
• S+ordsmithin#4 Make a Smíthíng
(swordsmíthíng) check to evaíuate, make or
repaír swords.
• Gunsmithin#4 Make a Smíthíng (gunsmíthíng)
check to evaíuate, make or repaír fírearms of aíí
kínds.
• Loc6smithin#4 Make a Smíthíng (íocksmíthíng)
check to píck íocks and dísarm compíex
mechanísms.
Craftin#4 A character wíth thís skííí ís skíííed ín workíng
wíth non-metaí materíaís.
• Car"entry4 Make a Craftíng(carpentry) check to
evaíuate, make or repaír wooden ítems.
• Masonry4 Make a Craftíng(masonry) check to
evaíuate, make or repaír stone or concrete ítems.
• *ai-orin#4 Make a Craftíng(taííoríng) check to
evaíuate, make or repaír non-íeather cíothes.
• Leather+or6in#4 Make a Craftíng
(íeatherworkíng) check to evaíuate, make or
repaír íeather ítems.
• Pottery4 Make a Craftíng(pottery) check to
evaíuate, make or repaír cíay and ceramíc ítems.
n#ineerin#4 A character wíth thís skííí has an
understandíng of the physícaí príncípíes ínvoíved ín
desígníng and buíídíng thíngs, and bíowíng them up.
• Shi"+ri#ht4 Make an Engíneeríng (shípwríght)
roíí to desígn and manage the buííd of shíps.
• Structura-4 Make an Engíneeríng (structuraí) roíí
to desígn and manage the buíídíng of buíídíngs.
• 0emo-itions4 Make an Engíneeríng
(demoíítíons) check to safeíy handíe and íay
expíosíve charges for maxímum effect.
• Gunnery4 Make an Engíneeríng(gunnery) check
to maxímíse the effícíency of canons and
howítzers.
:ea-in#4 A character wíth thís skííí ís a master of the
heaííng arts. Specíaíísatíons íncíude:
• Sur#ery4 Make a Heaííng(surgery) check to treat
gríevous wounds and perform other surgeríes.
• .irst %id4 Make a Heaííng(fírst aíd) check to
treat non-gríevous wounds.
• Medicine4 Make a Heaííng(medícíne) check to
treat poísons and díseases.
• %uto"sy4 Make a Heaííng(autopsy) check to
determíne what someone díed of.
La+4 A character wíth thís skííí ís ííkeíy to be a íawyer,
wíth a deep understandíng of íaws and customs and theír
appíícatíon ín court. Specíaíísatíons íncíude:
• Crimina-4 Make a Law(crímínaí) check to know
about crímínaí íaw or to prosecute or defend ín a
crímínaí case.
• Ci,i-4 Make a Law(cívíí) check to know about cívíí
íaw or to prosecute or defend ín a cívíí case.
Science4 A character wíth thís skííí ís a scíentíst, skíííed ín
the scíentífíc arts. Specíaíísatíons íncíude:
• Chemistry4 Make a Scíence (chemístry) check
to soíve chemícaí probíems and to know about
chemístry.
• Physics4 Make a Scíence (physícs) check to
soíve physícs probíems and to know about
physícs.
• ?io-o#y4 Make a Scíence (bíoíogy) check to
soíve bíoíogy probíems and to know about
bíoíogy.
• Geo-o#y4 Make a Scíence (geoíogy) check to
soíve geoíogy probíems and to know about
geoíogy.
Connections4 A character wíth thís skííí ís comfortabíe ín
varíous socíaí sítuatíons and has a network of contacts
and assocíates to draw on. Specíaíítíes íncíude:
• Crimina-4 Make a Connectíons(crímínaís) check
to fínd a suítabíe crímínaí contact for some
reason or to understand the reíatíonshíps and
píayers ín the crímínaí underworíd.
• Mi-itary4 Make a Connectíons(mííítary) check to
fínd a suítabíe mííítary contact for some reason
or to understand the reíatíonshíps and píayers ín
the mííítary.
• ?usiness4 Make a Connectíons(busíness) check
to fínd a suítabíe busíness contact for some
reason or to understand the reíatíonshíps and
píayers ín the busíness communíty.
• Society4 Make a Connectíons(socíety) check to
fínd a suítabíe upper cíass contact for some
reason or to understand the reíatíonshíps and
píayers amongst the gentry, arístocracy and
royaí socíaí círcíes.
• Po-itica-4 Make a Connectíons(poíítícaí) check to
fínd a suítabíe poíítícaí contact for some reason
or to understand the reíatíonshíps and píayers ín
the woríd of poíítícs and government.
2>
5a,i#ation4 You are an expert on the píottíng of routes
and courses. Specíaíísatíons íncíude:
• Sea4 Make a Navígatíon(sea) check to píot and
foííow a course at sea.
• Land4 Make a Navígatíon(íand) check to píot and
foííow a course on íand.
Si#na--in#4 You are an expert on sígnaíííng, whether wíth
semaphore, íamp or other method. Sígnaíííng aíso
íncíudes the use of secret codes. Specíaíísatíons íncíude:
• Lam"4 Make a Sígnaíííng(íamp) check to
accurateíy send or ínterpret íamp sígnaís (usíng
fíashes of a íamp to communícate at níght).
• Sema"hore4 Make a Sígnaíííng(semaphore)
check to accurateíy send or ínterpret semaphore
sígnaís (usíng fíags to communícate, ín the day
oníy).
• Codes4 Make a Sígnaíííng(codes) check to devíse
or decípher codes of aíí types.
Sur,i,a-4 A character wíth thís skííí ís a survívor, at home
ín the wííds, abíe to ííve comfortabíy off the íand, foííow
tracks, conceaí theír own tracks and set traps. They are
aíso knowíedgeabíe on the sub|ects of anímaís and píants
of the wííds. Specíaíísatíons íncíude:
• *em"erate4 Make Survívaí(temperate) checks
to survíve ín temperate cíímates (most of Europe
and Ameríca ís consídered temperate).
• *ro"ica-4 Make Survívaí(tropícaí) checks to
survíve ín tropícaí cíímates (much of Afríca, Indía
and the Caríbbean ís consídered tropícaí).
• Po-ar4 Make Survívaí (poíar) checks to survíve ín
Arctíc or Antarctíc cíímates (most of Scandínavía,
Iceíand, Greeníand and the poíes are consídered
poíar).
• 0esert4 Make Survívaí (desert) checks to survíve
ín desert cíímates.
• Mountains4 Make Survívaí (mountaíns) checks
to survíve ín mountaínous cíímates.
*actics4 A character wíth thís skííí ís an experíenced
waríeader, abíe to íead men ínto battíe and pían effectíve
tactícs and strategíes, whííst aíso managíng the íogístícaí
needs of a campaígn. Thís aíso íncíudes aíí aspects of
síege warfare, íncíudíng íogístícs and síege engíne usage
Specíaíísatíons íncíude:
• Sea4 Make Tactícs(sea) checks to maxímíse your
effectíveness duríng sea battíes.
• Land4 Make Tactícs(íand) checks to maxímíse
your effectíveness duríng íand battíes.
• ?oardin#4 Make Tactícs(boardíng) checks to
maxímíse your effectíveness duríng boardíng
actíons.
%dministration4 A character wíth thís skííí ís famíííar
wíth the mechanícs of runníng busínesses and
organísatíons. Specíaíítíes íncíude:
• %ccountin#4 Make an Admínístratíon
(accountíng) check to prepare or anaíyse sets of
accounts.
• Mana#ement4 Make an a Admínístratíon
(management) check to set up and run systems
whích keep a busíness or other organísatíon
runníng smoothíy and effectíveíy.
• *rainin#4 Make an Admínístratíon(traíníng)
check to deííver proper traíníng.
:umanities4 A character wíth thís skííí ís knowíedgeabíe
on matters such as geography, hístory, current affaírs,
phííosophy and so forth. Specíaíísatíons íncíude:
• Geo#ra"hy4 Make a Humanítíes(geography)
check to know about the íocatíons of dífferent
píaces and geographícaí features.
• :istory4 Make a Humanítíes(hístory) check to
know about hístorícaí events and fígures.
• Current %ffairs4 Make a Humanítíes(current
affaírs) check to know about current events,
peopíe and poíítícs.
• Phi-oso"hy4 Make a Humanítíes(phííosophy)
check to know about phííosophícaí matters.
c
2ef-e&es S6i--s and S"ecia-ities
These skííís and specíaíítíes reíate to a characters speed
of actíon, accuracy and fínesse.
%#i-ity4 A character wíth thís skííí has an exceííent sense
of baíance and controí of theír bodííy posítíon. Usefuí for
dodgíng thíngs, dancíng and baíancíng. Specíaíísatíons
íncíude:
• 0od#e4 Make an Agíííty(dodge) check to avoíd
traps, or to perform gymnastíc feats, such as
swíngíng on ropes or performíng fííps and roíís.
Aíso gíves a bonus to both meíee and ranged
defence
• ?a-ance4 Make an Agíííty(baíance) check to keep
your baíance, such as when crossíng narrow
surfaces or waíkíng on ropes.
• 0ance4 Make an Agíííty(dance) check to dance ín
an entertaíníng and skíífuí way.
• 2unnin#4 Make an Agíííty(runníng) check to run
reaííy fast.
• Initiati,e4 Make an Agíííty(ínítíatíve) check to
determíne turn order ín combat rounds.
%rchery4 A character wíth thís skííí ís a skíííed archer,
capabíe of fast and accurate shootíng. Specíaíísatíons
íncíude:
• 0ra+n bo+4 Make an Archery(drawn bow)
check to hít someone wíth an arrow from a
íongbow or shortbow.
• Crossbo+4 Make an Archery(crossbow) check to
hít someone wíth a boít from a crossbow.
Shootin#4 A character wíth thís skííí ís a crackshot wíth
pístoís, carbínes, rífíes and shotguns. Specíaíísatíons
íncíude:
• :and#uns4 Make a Shootíng(handguns) check
when fíríng pístoís and other handguns.
• Lon#arms4 Make a Shootíng (íongarms) check
when fíríng muskets, carbínes, rífíes, shotguns
and other weapons heíd ín two hands to fíre.
• Gunnery4 Make a Shootíng(gunnery) check
when fíríng swíveí guns, cannons and howítzers.
Stea-th4 A character wíth thís skííí ís abíe to move around
undetected and híde fíawíessíy. Specíaíísatíons íncíude:
• (rban4 Make a Steaíth(urban) check to híde or
23
move undetected through settíements. Steaíth ís
often opposed by Perceptíon.
• 2ura-4 Make a Steaíth(ruraí) check to híde or
move undetected through fíeíds and cuítívated
íands. Steaíth ís often opposed by Perceptíon.
• 1i-d4 Make a Steaíth(wííd) check to híde or
move undetected through wííderness, píaces as
yet untouched by man. Steaíth ís often opposed
by Perceptíon.
*hro+in#4 A character wíth thís skííí has a good throwíng
arm, abíe to píace thrown ob|ects accurateíy and reííabíy.
They are aíso good at catchíng thíngs. Specíaíísatíons
íncíude:
• ?a-anced4 Make a Throwíng(baíanced) check to
hít somethíng wíth a baíanced thrown ob|ect.
Baíanced means that the ob|ect fííes straíght and
true when thrown (throwíng kníves, |aveííns and
baíís are exampíes of baíanced ob|ects).
• (nba-anced4 Make a Throwíng(unbaíanced)
check to hít somethíng wíth an unbaíanced
ob|ect. Unbaíanced ob|ects do not fíy straíght
and true when thrown (furníture, other
characters, anímaís and most meíee weapons
are exampíes of baíanced ob|ects).
e
.-a+s
The foííowíng ííst compríses the fíaws avaííabíe to píayer
characters duríng character creatíon.
• %ddict4 The character ís addícted to some
substance, usuaííy aícohoí, hashísh or psííocybe
(magíc mushrooms). The character must díscard
a Drama poínt whenever you turn down the
opportuníty to íncapacítate themseíves by takíng
the substance concerned.
• ?erser6er4 Once the character gets ínto combat
they must spend a Drama poínt to wíthdraw
before aíí theír enemíes have been kíííed,
íncapacítated or have fíed, or the character ís
defeated.
• ?-ood thirsty4 The character must spend a
Drama poínt not to kííí a defeated foe ín coíd
bíood.
• Com"assionate4 The character must spend a
Drama poínt to not heíp someone who ís cíearíy
ín need.
• Co+ard4 The character cannot spend Drama
poínts when actíng ín a "heroíc" manner. A
heroíc manner ís actíng agaínst theír own seíf-
ínterest ín heípíng others.
• 0oomed4 The character cannot spend Drama
poínts to reduce damage taken. They are
doomed to díe. They may have embraced theír
fate and have a deathwísh, or may be actíveíy
tryíng to avoíd ít.
• 0rifter4 The character must spend a Drama
poínt to stay ín the same píace for more than one
níght. One poínt suffíces to íet them stay for any
íength of tíme ín that píace untíí the choose to
move on. If they then íater return they must
spent a poínt to stay more than one níght agaín.
• .ocussed4 Once the character has decíded on a
goaí (somethíng they wísh to achíeve) they must
spend a Drama poínt to perform any actíon
whích ís not dírectíy conducíve to achíevíng that
goaí.
• .or#etfu-4 The character cannot spend Drama
poínts on Knowíedge skííí checks. They have a
memory ííke a síeve and wouíd forget theír own
head íf ít wasn't screwed on.
• Grim4 Whenever the character encounters an
authoríty fígure ín a tense sítuatíon, they must
spend a Drama poínt or the authoríty fígure wííí
assume the character, and those assocíated wíth
them, are the bad guys.
• Gui-t4 Whenever the character kííís someone or
somethíng they are wracked by pangs of guíít
and must díscard a Drama poínt.
• :arbin#er4 Any aíííes wíthín 100ft of the
character cannot spend Drama poínts to reduce
damage taken (aíthough the character can spend
Drama poínts to reduce damage they themseíves
take as normaí). Death foííows the character ííke
a shroud and those around them seem to díe ííke
fííes.
• :aunted4 The character cannot spend Drama
poínts on Wíts skííí checks. Some atrocíous deed
or event ín theír past haunts them to thís day
and they are often found staríng ínto the
dístance, not payíng attentíon to events around
them.
• :eroic4 The character cannot spend Drama
poínts when actíng ín a "cowardíy" manner. A
cowardíy manner ís actíng ín theír own seíf-
ínterest when they are ín a posítíon to heíp
others.
• :onest4 The character must spend a Drama
poínt to teíí a ííe, conceaí the truth from
someone, deceíve someone through act of
omíssíon of the truth or to coííude wíth others to
deceíve. They're as honest as the day ís íong.
• :onourab-e4 The character must spend a
Drama poínt to break theír word once gíven. As
íong as you don't gíve your word, you can freeíy
ííe and cheat tíí the cows come home. Note that
you can gíve your word to yourseíf, swearíng a
personaí oath to achíeve somethíng, do
somethíng or not do somethíng. Breakíng your
own oath then requíres a Drama poínt to spent.
Once you have spent a Drama poínt to break
your word you no íonger need to spend poínts to
break that partícuíar commítment agaín.
• Cin&ed4 The character cannot spend Drama
poínts on checks where you use a mechanísm of
any kínd (e.g. Guns, but not swords).
Mechanísms |ust don't seem to ííke them.
• Liar4 The character must spend a Drama poínt to
teíí the straíght, unembeíííshed truth. In practíse
thís means they must conceaí ímportant
ínformatíon, teíí outríght ííes, understate or
exaggerate ínformatíon at every opportuníty. The
character ís a no good íyíng dog.
24
• Lone 1o-f4 Whenever the characters spends a
Drama poínt aíí theír aíííes wíthín 100ft must
díscard a Drama poínt each. If they have no
Drama poínts thís has no affect on them. The
íone woíf works best aíone and tends to attract
troubíe when ín groups.
• Lusty4 The character must spend a Drama poínt
to turn down the offer of a romantíc ínteríude
when offered.
• Mad 0o#4 The character cannot spend Drama
poínts ín a combat whích someone eíse started.
They are the archetypícaí "mad dog" aíways
spoíííng for a fíght and preferríng víoíent
soíutíons to peacefuí ones.
• Pariah4 The character ís revííed by most of the
popuíatíon because of what they are, rather than
who they are. Negro's ín Ameríca are paríah's.
Spend a Drama poínt at the start of the sessíon
or you wííí fínd yourseíf píaced ín at íeast one
dangerous sítuatíon due to your paríah status
duríng the game sessíon.
• 2a#e4 The character must spend a Drama poínt
not to attack someone who ínsuíts or attacks the
character.
• 2e-uctant4 The character cannot spend Drama
poínts ín a combat whích they have started. They
are reíuctant to fíght for some reason, such as
beíng a retíred soídíer or ex-paíd kíííer.
• 2e"utation4 The character has a reputatíon
whích attracts those íookíng to make a name for
themseíves. Spend a Drama poínt at the start of
a sessíon or some young chaííenger wííí
approach and chaííenge the character to a dueí
duríng the sessíon, wíth víoíent consequences.
• Se-fish4 The character must spend a Drama
poínt when they wísh to gíve somethíng of theírs
to someone eíse. Note that they can't círcumvent
thís by "índírect" gívíng, such as droppíng
somethíng so someone eíse can píck ít up.
• Sha6es4 The character cannot spend Drama
poínts on Refíexes skííí checks. Nerve or
psychoíogícaí damage has íeft them prone to the
shakes.
• Sic64 The character cannot spend Drama poínts
on Brawn skííí checks. They are unweíí. Thís
míght be a chroníc dísease ííke tubercuíosís, a
physícaí ímpaírment such as a íímp or badíy
heaíed wound or a state of generaí unheaíth.
• S"endthrift4 The character spends money ííke
ít's goíng out of fashíon or tends to íose ít. At the
end of a game sessíon they íose any remaíníng
money they have, startíng off the next sessíon
fíat broke.
• 1anted4 The character ís wanted for a críme
they eíther díd commít, or whích they were
framed for. Spend a Drama poínt at the start of
each sessíon or they wííí have to contend wíth
bounty hunters or offícíaís, who are after them,
duríng that sessíon.
?efore P-ay ?e#ins
Before startíng píay make sure you have performed aíí
the actíons on thís checkííst:
1. Create characters.
2. Name your shíp.
3. Assígn posítíons to characters.
4. Choose a home port (optíonaí).
5. Píay.
2?
Bartholome# Ao!erts plunders the 2amuel
The pirates s#armed a!oard the 2amuel and !egan taing the ship apart'
They tore open the hatches and attaced the cargo lie madmen$ cutting open
!ales$ truns and !o&es #ith their !oarding a&es and cutlasses' 2ome of the
goods they carried off to their ship$ !ut much of the cargo they haced to pieces
and thre# over!oard' They too t#o of the mounted guns and all of the spare
rigging and stores$ !ut they thre# the anchor and ca!les over the side' They
carried off forty !arrels of gunpo#der and commandeered the ship%s !oat' ,ll
this #as done #ith -incessant cursing and s#earing$ more lie fiends than
men'-
-"ay 2?$ 132.
5.
Introduction
Prívateers and Pírates ís a game where combat ís ííkeíy to
be quíte a common occurrence but the ruíes for managíng
combat are deííberateíy kept quíck and símpíe. The ruíes
reaííy |ust gíve a framework for combat to occur ín and
the GM and píayers shouíd have fun fííííng ín the detaíís
through roíepíay.
The foííowíng sectíon provídes detaííed ruíes for
governíng tactícaí events, sítuatíons where tíme ís crítícaí.
To succeed on a check you must roíí greater than the DIFF
number.
Summary
Combat ís dívíded ínto a seríes of rounds. Each character
can move and/or perform one other actíon each round.
2ounds
Tíme crítícaí sítuatíons, such as combat, are dívíded ínto
rounds. Each round ís fíve seconds ín duratíon and each
character ínvoíved ín the sítuatíon gets one turn per
round.
Sur"rise
In some sítuatíons one or both sídes ín a combat may be
surprísed by the other. A surprísed character roíís
Agíííty(ínítíatíve) as normaí, but ís treated as Stunned
(díscussed íater) ín the fírst round of combat.
*urns
A round ís dívíded up ínto turns. Each character gets one
turn per round.
At the start of a combat encounter each character shouíd
make a Agíííty(ínítíatíve) check. Startíng ín the fírst round,
characters take theír turns ín order of the one wíth the
híghest Agíííty(ínítíatíve) roíí fírst, workíng downwards.
When a characters turn comes up they may move and/or
perform one other action. Aíternatíveíy, a character
may "hoíd" theír turn.
The "heíd" turn can be used at any tíme and can ínterrupt
another píayers turn íf the hoídíng píayer wíshes, but you
can oníy move or perform another actíon on a heíd turn,
not both. If the heíd turn ís not used before the start of
the characters next turn ít ís íost.
If a sítuatíon aríses where two or more characters wísh to
use theír heíd turns at the same tíme, the characters
concerned shouíd make Agíííty(ínítíatíve) checks and the
híghest roííer gets to choose when to act.
Sampíe actíons íncíude:
• Manoeuvre around an opponent
• Swíng on a rope
• Cíímb or |ump over a íow obstacíe (such as a íow
waíí or raíííng)
• Swím two yards
• Attack an opponent
• Aím
• Defend
• Ouarter reíoad one barreí of a bíackpowder gun
• Open an uníocked door
• Take somethíng from a pocket, pack or símííar,
ready to use ít
• Draw a weapon
• Use somethíng you are hoídíng
• Make a statement or comment duríng combat
• Admíníster a coup de grace
It can be assumed that any actíon can íncíude a yard or
two of movement, uníess common-sense cíearíy
precíudes movement whííst performíng the actíon. Bríef
comments or gestures do not requíre an actíon, they are
free to perform as and when a píayer wíshes, but anythíng
more than a few words counts as a fuíí actíon.
Mo,ement
How far a character can move ín a síngíe turn ís noted ín
the foííowíng tabíe:
$o%ement
Character has neíther Agíííty nor runníng 30ft
Character has Agíííty 50ft
Character has Agíííty and runníng 70ft
Remember that encumbered characters haíve theír
maxímum movement dístance and aíso haíve movement
dístances íf crossíng treacherous #round.
'ther %ctions
Most of the actíons are faíríy seíf expíanatory, but a few
merít further díscussíon:
0efend
If you use a defend actíon aíí attacks agaínst you are at
-20 untíí the start of your next turn.
%im
An aím actíon gíves you +20 to hít íf you attack on your
next turn.
Manoeu,re
A maneuver actíon gíves you +10 to hít íf you attack
(meíee and ranged) on your next turn and aíí attacks
agaínst you are at -10 untíí the start of your next turn.
Manoeuvre ínvoíves shíftíng posítíon around an opponent
ín meíee, or |ust shuffííng round ín ranged combat to get a
better angíe (for both offensíve and defensíve purposes).
Cou" de Grace
A Coup de Grace ínstantíy kííís an íncapacítated
character. You can oníy deííver a coup de grace to a
character who ís íncapacítated.
51
%ttac6s
To hít an opponent make a Fíghtíng check for a meíee
attack, Throwíng check for a ranged attack wíth a thrown
weapon, Archery check for a ranged attack wíth a bow or
crossbow or a Shootíng check for a ranged attack wíth a
gun.
If the target ís not compíeteíy heípíess or ímmobííe the
base DIFF to hít depends on theír skííís and specíaíítíes for
meíee attacks and theír cover for ranged attacks:
%#ainst Me-ee %ttac6s 0I..
Target doesn't have Fíghtíng 30
Target has Fíghtíng 50
Target has Fíghtíng and reíevant specíaííty for
weapon beíng used
70
%#ainst 2an#ed %ttac6s
Target has no Cover 30
Target ín Partíaí cover 50
Target has Fuíí cover 70
Partíaí cover conceaís between 1 and 50% of a character
from an attack. Fuíí cover covers more than 50% of a
character from attack.
Thís base DIFF represents a character abíííty to avoíd
beíng hít by dodgíng, evadíng, bíockíng and parryíng
attacks.
Further modífíers may then be appííed to the attack roíí as
foííows:
Modifier
Target ís not ímmobííe or stunned and has
Agíííty skííí
-10
Target ís not ímmobííe or stunned and has
Agíííty skííí and Dodge specíaííty (not
cumuíatíve wíth the above modífíer)
-20
Target at Long range -20
Attacker Aímed on theír íast turn +20
Attacker usíng a Manoeuvre actíon on theír
íast turn
+10
Target ís outnumbered 2:1 +10
Target ís outnumbered 3:1 or more +20
Target ís stunned +30
Target ís ímmobííe +50
Target used a Defend actíon on theír íast turn -20
Target used a Manoeuvre actíon on theír íast
turn
-10
Attacker has heíght advantage +10
Target has heíght advantage -10
A target beyond a weapons short range vaíue but not
beyond the weapons íong range vaíue ís at íong range.
Shie-ds
A character usíng a shíeíd receíves a +10 to theír Meíee &
Ranged Defence DIFF.
The oníy tíme characters are ííkeíy to encounter shíeíds ís
when fíghtíng prímítíve natíves, "cívííísed" peopíe do not
tend to use them.
Paired 1ea"ons
A character wíeídíng two one-handed meíee weapons
(one ín each hand) receíves a +10 bonus to Meíee Attack
roíís & +10 to theír Meíee Defence DIFF.
If they hít wíth an even roíí the weapon ín the ríght hand
stríkes. A hít wíth an odd roíí índícates a hít wíth the íeft
hand weapon.
A character wíeídíng two pístoís receíves a +10 Ranged
attack íf they díscharge both ín the same actíon.
Critica- :its
Increase the damage code of a crítícaííy successfuí attack
by one step (a crítícaííy successfuí attack ís one where
you hít wíth a roíí of doubíes).
S"ecia- %ttac6s
Specíaí attacks are attacks whích aím to do more than
|ust ínfííct damage on a target.
Stun
Make a normaí unarmed attack usíng Fíghtíng(brawííng).
If the attack híts ímmedíateíy make a Heaíth(strength)
check agaínst the targets Heaíth(resíííence). If you
succeed you have stunned them for ten mínutes. If you
faíí they are stííí standíng. A stun attempt ínfíícts very íow
damage, regardíess of the weapon beíng used. If you
crítícaííy succeed, they are knocked unconscíous for ten
mínutes.
Gra""-e
Make a normaí unarmed attack usíng Fíghtíng(brawííng).
If the attack híts ímmedíateíy make a Heaíth(grappííng)
check agaínst the Heaíth(grappííng) of the character who
you struck. If you wín you have pínned them. If you íose
the grappíe attempt faíís. A grappíe attempt ínfíícts no
damage. Pínníng ís díscussed ín more detaíí íater ín these
ruíes.
S-am
Make a normaí unarmed attack usíng Fíghtíng(brawííng).
If the attack híts ímmedíateíy make a Heaíth(strength)
check agaínst the Heaíth(strength) of the character who
you struck. If you wín you have knocked them down. If
you íose they are stííí standíng. A síam attempt ínfíícts no
damage.
You may receíve a +20 on the Heaíth(strength) check íf
you knock yourseíf down as part of the attack
(representíng a tackíe).
0isarm
Make a normaí attack usíng Fíghtíng(reíevant specíaííty).
You may be armed or unarmed to perform a dísarm. If the
attack híts ímmedíateíy make a Fíghtíng(reíevant
specíaííty) check agaínst the Fíghtíng(reíevant specíaííty)
of the character who you struck. If you wín you have
forced them to drop a heíd ítem of your choíce. If you íose
the dísarm attempt faíís. A dísarm attempt ínfíícts no
damage.
Push
Make a normaí attack usíng Fíghtíng(reíevant specíaííty).
You may be armed or unarmed to perform a push. If the
attack híts ímmedíateíy make a Heaíth(strength) check
agaínst the Heaíth(strength) of the character who you
struck. If you wín you force them up to fíve yards ín a
dírectíon of your choosíng. If you íose they hoíd theír
ground. A push attempt ínfíícts no damage.
52
Snea6 %ttac6
You can oníy make a sneak attack agaínst a target who ís
compíeteíy surprísed, not even aware of the attack untíí ít
híts them. Make a normaí attack roíí and, íf you hít, the
attack ínstantíy kííís them, or íncapacítates them for an
hour (attackers choíce whích). The target of a sneak
attack may spend a drama poínt to |ust take normaí
damage from the attack rather than the ínstant kííí or
íncapacítatíon effect.
The GM shouíd appíy common sense to sneak attacks,
under most círcumstances a normaí character couídn't kííí
an eíephant wíth a síngíe attack, for exampíe.
Critica- .ai-ures in Combat
A crítícaí faííure (an unsuccessfuí attack wíth a roíí of
doubíes) on an attack means one of the foííowíng events
occurs:
• If there ís a fríendíy or neutraí character ad|acent
to the íntended target of your attack, your attack
stríkes them ínstead. Caícuíate damage from the
crítícaííy faííed roíí as normaí.
• Cheap guns |am when you roíí a crítícaí faííure
when attackíng wíth them. Cíearíng a |am ís an
actíon and requíres a successfuí DIFF 70
Shootíng(reíevant weapon specíaííty) check. Untíí
the |am ís cíeared the gun cannot be fíred agaín.
• Cheap meíee weapons break when you roíí a
crítícaí faííure when attackíng wíth them. A
broken meíee weapon can stííí be used as an
ímprovísed weapon.
• If none of the three above events appíy you are
stunned for the rest of the round and the whoíe
of the next round.
S"ecia- 2esu-ts
The foííowíng are severaí specíaí resuíts than can occur to
characters ín combat, beyond |ust normaí damage.
ntan#-e
If an entangííng weapon híts ít entangíes the target. An
entangíed character can do nothíng except use actíons to
make DIFF 70 Heaíth(strength) checks. Once they have
succeeded at the check they can act normaííy agaín.
Stunned
Aíí attacks agaínst a Stunned character are at +30 and a
Stunned character cannot move or perform actíons.
The specífícs of beíng stunned are up to the píayer or GM
but ííkeíy íncíude a combínatíon of beíng knocked prone,
bíurred vísíon, ríngíng ín the ears and generaí confusíon.
Another character can use an actíon to make a DIFF 70
Heaííng(fírst aíd) check to heíp a stunned character, a
success negates the stun and the character can begín to
act normaííy agaín on theír next turn.
Pinned
A pínned character ís heípíess untíí the character who ís
pínníng them reíeases them or ís íncapacítated.
A pínned character can do nothíng and counts as
ímmobííísed, so aíí attacks agaínst them have a +50
modífíer to hít.
A pínníng character can move or perform an actíon each
turn whííst maíntaíníng the pín. If they wísh, they may use
that other actíon to get one of the foííowíng addítíonaí
effects:
• Make a Heaíth(grappííng) roíí and ínfííct damage
equaí to the tens díce of the roíí. Thís damage ís
not reduced by armour.
• Make a Heaíth(grappííng) roíí agaínst the pínned
characters Heaíth(grappííng) to force them to
drop somethíng they are hoídíng.
• Make a Heaíth(grappííng) roíí roíí agaínst the
pínned characters Heaíth(grappííng) to move
three yards wíth the pínned character.
• Make a Heaíth(grappííng) roíí agaínst the pínned
characters Heaíth(grappííng) to push the pínned
character down to the ground. If you voíuntarííy
go prone wíth them, receíve a +20 on your roíí.
• Make a Heaíth(grappííng) roíí agaínst the pínned
characters Heaíth(grappííng) to use them as a
human shíeíd. Aíí attacks agaínst you have a -20
to hít and íf they míss, stríke the pínned
character ínstead.
• Make a Heaíth(grappííng) roíí agaínst the pínned
characters Heaíth(endurance). If you wín the
pínned character ís knocked unconscíous for ten
mínutes.
S"ot 2u-es
The foííowíng ruíes are províded to make thíngs easíer ín
certaín, faíríy common, sítuatíons.
*reacherous .ootin#
A character who has treacherous footíng (aka.
Treacherous ground), such as mud, íce, knee deep or
more ín water and so forth, shouíd take a -10 to attack
roíís and haíves maxímum movement dístance ín a turn.
Confined S"aces
Combat ín confíned spaces ís díffícuít. As a good ruíe of
thumb, íf a character ís cramped or restrícted ín theír
abíííty to move freeíy (such as havíng to stoop over ín a
tunneí) they take a -10 on aíí attacks. If they are very
cramped, confíned or restrícted (such as havíng to crouch
or crawí) the penaíty íncreases to -20 and the GM may
aíso wísh to haíve maxímum movement dístance as weíí.
:ei#ht %d,anta#e
A character who ís above theír opponent has a +10 on
attacks. A character who ís beíow theír opponent has a
-10 on attacks.
Mounted Combat
A character who ís on horseback gets a +10 on attacks
agaínst opponents on the ground íf they have the Rídíng
skííí and attacks made agaínst them from the ground are
at -10 to hít. In addítíon, the ríder uses theír horses
movement rate rather than theír own.
If you are on horseback and don't have the Rídíng skííí
you do not get the modífíers but you do stííí use the
mounts movement rather than your own.
Im"ro,ised 1ea"ons
An ímprovísed weapon ís somethíng whích you píck up
and use to attack or defend yourseíf wíth, but whích ís not
specíaííy desígned as a weapon. Attack roíís made wíth an
ímprovísed weapon have a -10.
• A smaíí ímprovísed weapon, such as a tankard or
rock, ínfíícts L damage.
• A medíum sízed ímprovísed weapon, such as a
wooden branch or tabíe íeg, ínfíícts M damage.
• A íarge ímprovísed weapon, somethíng whích
needs two hands to wíeíd such as a
síedgehammer or smaíí bouíder, ínfíícts H
damage.
Aua-ity 1ea"ons
Ouaííty weapons cost two or more tímes the príce of a
normaí versíon of the same weapon. They gíve a bonus to
hít, equaí to theír príce muítípííer, up to a íímít of +10.
55
For example, when using a 'uality sword which costs six
times normal price you hae a ,( modifier to your
attacks with that sword.
Shar"ness <'"tiona- 2u-e=
Edged weapons gaín a cumuíatíve -1 modífíer to the
damage they ínfííct for every battíe ín whích they are
used.
For example, after three battles a sword would be at ;)
damage.
Thís modífíer may be reset to 0 by sharpeníng the weapon
by hand, takíng ten mínutes. Usíng a proper gríndíng
wheeí changes the modífíer to +1 (so the weapon actuaííy
ínfíícts more damage than normaí after ít has been
ground).
.i#htin# aboard shi"
Combat ís quíte ííkeíy to occur aboard shíp, so these ruíes
cover some common sítuatíons and how to deaí wíth
them.
Im"ro,ised +ea"ons aboard Shi"
There are no shortage of ímprovísed weapons around a
shíps deck, so assume a character can use an símpíe
actíon to fínd an ímprovísed weapon such as a cudgeí,
beíayíng pín or chaín.
S+in#in# from the ri##in#
Characters can use the varíous íoose ropes whích form
part of a shíps ríggíng as an aíd to combat. There are two
maín ways to do thís:
• *o #et around4 You can use the ropes to swíng from
píace to píace rather than movíng normaííy. Thís íets
you swíng over the heads of your enemíes.
• *o fi#ht4 You can swíng ínto an opponent. Thís
requíres a move and attack actíon ín the same round,
but you get a +10 on the attack actíon.
.i#htin# on a tossin# dec6 or in the ri##in#
If the deck ís tossíng around (due to stormy seas), or both
combatants are ín the ríggíng, aíí checks are at -10 and
movement rates are haíved.
?ein# 6noc6ed o,erboard
A character who faíís ínto water wearíng armour drowns.
If they cheat death they are assumed to have managed to
shed theír armour (whích ís íost) but they survíve.
0etai-ed Combat &am"-e
Royaí Navaí Líeutenant |onathan Hardíng has pursued the
wícked pírate Bíackpatch ínto a warehouse fuíí of cotton
baíes ín Port Royaíe. Neíther Líeutenant Hardíng nor
Bíackpatch has any Drama poínts.
|onathan Hardíng Bíackpatch
%#e 21 42
S6i--s Notíce Fíghtíng, Saíííng,
Steaíth, Shootíng
!ui"ment Cutíass (M)
Fííntíock pístoí (M,
ENC 5, £1½, 15/60)
ENC 15
Cutíass (M)
Fííntíock pístoí (M,
ENC 5, £1½, 15/60)
ENC 15
b f
2ound 'ne
Round one begíns as |onathan Hardíng enters a
warehouse where he suspects the pírate Bíackpatch to be.
|onathan Hardíng and Bíackpatch make Agíííty(ínítíatíve)
checks. Neíther has eíther the skííí or specíaííty so they
each roíí d100 and read the íowest díce as tens. |onathan
Hardíng gets a 58 and Bíackpatch gets a 23, so |onathan
gets to act fírst each round. He enters the warehouse and
íooks around (an actíon). Bíackpatch ís hídíng behínd a
baíe of cotton, so the GM teíís Hardíng's píayer to make a
Notíce check to spot hím. Bíackpatch has the Steaíth skííí,
so the DIFF of the Notíce check ís 50.
Hardíng checks and succeeds, spottíng Bíackpatch.
Hardíng uses hís movement actíon to duck behínd a baíe,
gettíng ínto partíaí cover (the GM ruíes that the baíe can
cover most of hím, but ít míght not compíeteíy stop a baíí
híttíng near the edge).
Bíackpatch now gets hís turn and decídes to hoíd hís turn
(hís pístoí ís aíready drawn).
The two opponents are around 10 yards apart.
2ound *+o
|onathan Hardíng (who's gun ís aíready drawn) uses hís
actíon to shoot at Bíackpatch, but Bíackpatch ínterrupts
|onathan's turn, usíng hís heíd actíon to fíre at the
Líeutenant. Bíackpatches píayer makes a Shootíng check,
needíng more than 50 (|onathan ís ín partíaí cover).
Bíackpatch roíís a 46 (he has the Shootíng skííí, so reads
the díce as roííed) and mísses.
|onathan compíetes hís attack. He needs a 50 to hít
(because Bíackpatch ís aíso ín cover) and roíís a 14
(readíng íowest díce as tens because he doesn't have the
Shootíng skííí), not enough, and mísses.
It's now Bíackpatch's turn (hís prevíous actíon was hís
heíd turn from íast round). He drops hís now fíred pístoí (a
free actíon), draws hís cutíass (one actíon) then moves
ínto meíee wíth |onathan (hís movement).
2ound *hree
|onathan drops hís pístoí and uses hís actíon to draw hís
56
cutíass, then advances to meet Bíackpatch.
Bíackpatch círcíes round |onathan, usíng a Manoeuvre
actíon.
2ound .our
|onathan fínds hímseíf up cíose and personaí wíth
Bíackpatch and uses hís actíon to síash at Bíackpatch. He
roíís a Fíghtíng check. He needs more than 50 (because
Bíackpatch has the Fíghtíng skííí) and has a -10 modífíer
because Bíackpatch manoeuvred on hís íast turn.
|onathan roíís and gets 25, subtractíng ten for a fínaí roíí
of 15, not enough to hít.
Bíackpatch now uses hís actíon to stríke at |onathan. He
needs more than 30 to hít (because |onathan doesn't have
the fíghtíng skííí). He (Bíackpatch) has the Fíghtíng skííí
and aíso gets a +10 to hít because he Manoeuvred on hís
íast turn.
Hís fírst roíí ís a 35, íncreased to 45, a hít. It ínfíícts M
damage, whích ís 9pts. |onathan makes hís damage check
and succeeds.
2ound .i,e
|onathan reaííses he's ín troubíe and opts to Defend and
run away, movíng hís maxímum 30ft away from
Bíackpatch.
Bíackpatch pursues (aíso movíng 30ft) and tríes to stab
hím ín the back. He roíís 96, whích ís reduced to 76 by
|onathans Defend actíon. Thís ís stííí suffícíent to hít as
Bíackpatch oníy needed a 30. The cutíass ínfíícts 15
damage and |onathan makes hís damage check.
|onathan roíís 18 and faíís hís check, needíng a 24 to
succeed. Luckííy he roííed more than hís most seríous
wound (the 15 poínt one), so he ís oníy íncapacítated for
ten mínutes, rather than bíeedíng to death.
Bíackpatch ís ín a good mood today, so he saunters off,
íeavíng the young Líeutenant to ííve to fíght another day.
0ue--in#
Dueíííng ís combat between two índívíduaís foííowíng
formaí ruíes. Breach of the ruíes resuíts ín an automatíc
íoss and possíbíe consequences from others ínvoíved.
Each partícípant ín a dueí usuaííy have a second, who's
|ob ís to íook after theír ínterests. The two most common
types of dueís are sword dueís and pístoí dueís.
To begín a dueí one party chaííenges the other. It ís
normaí for the chaííenged party to decíde the tíme and
píace of the dueí, and the weapons to be used.
The chaííenger decídes whether the battíe ís to fírst bíood
(as soon as one partícípant takes a wound the dueí ends)
or death. Thís ís decíded when the dueí ís agreed. If the
dueí ís to the death and one party becomes íncapacítated
but survíves the dueí must be repeated when both
characters are fuííy heaíed.
In poííte socíety an índívíduaí may refuse a dueí wíthout
íoss of face or honour íf they are cíearíy outcíassed.
Dueís are usuaííy fought wíth swords or pístoís. Dueíííng ís
a common way for prívateers to settíe theír dífferences.
Armour ís not normaííy worn ín dueís, and the referee wííí
check both partíes for armour before begínníng the dueí.
S+ord 0ue-s
A sword dueí ís a standard battíe between two opponents.
They begín two swords íengths apart wíth weapons
drawn, then fíght on. If the dueí ís to the death and one
character ís bíeedíng ít ís normaí to stop the dueí whííst
theír wounds are treated, then contínue agaín. Sword
dueís are normaííy fought wíth a síngíe sword, but a
sword and dagger combínatíon may aíso be used on
occasíon.
Pisto- 0ue-s
In a pístoí dueí both dueííísts cock theír weapons then
stand back to back. They then waík away from one
another, an agreed number of paces, then turn and fíre
símuítaneousíy. The characters secretíy decíde whether to
aím or not before fíríng. If neíther aíms, both fíre
símuítaneousíy wíth theír snapshot modífíer on theír
attack roíí. If one aíms and the other doesn't, the one who
dídn't shoots fírst wíth theír snapshot modífíer, then the
other fíres wíth no modífíer. If both aím, they both fíre
símuítaneousíy wíth no modífíers. The number of paces
usuaííy refíected the severíty of the ínsuít.
• For a mííd ínsuít: Long range for the weapons beíng
used.
• For a seríous ínsuít: Short range for the weapons beíng
used.
The shots are resoíved by Shootíng(pístoís) checks, a
success índícatíng a hít on the other character. Characters
may not dodge attacks ín a pístoí dueí, they are expected
to stand and take the fíre.
Obvíousíy pístoí dueís tend to be pretty dangerous. After
both partíes have fíred honour ís normaííy consídered to
have been satísfíed and the dueí ends.
a
5=
Mass Combat
The foííowíng ruíes aííow quíck resoíutíon of íarge scaíe
combats wíthout boggíng game píay down too much.
Mass combat ís dívíded ínto a seríes of rounds.
Each mass combat round ís ten mínutes ín duratíon.
At the start of each round the íeaders of each síde make
opposed Tactícs checks. When fíghtíng ashore use
Tactícs(íand) checks and when engaged ín boardíng
actíons (battíes aboard shíps) use Tactícs(boardíng).
The íosíng síde takes casuaítíes equaí to one-tenth of the
number of troops on the wínníng síde. If the wínníng síde
gets a crítícaí success doubíe the casuaítíes taken ín that
round.
These "íost" troops are casuaítíes. After the battíe ends
the chíef medícaí character on a síde shouíd make a DIFF
50 Heaííng(surgery) roíí for each casuaíty. On a success
that casuaíty survíves, on a faííure they díe.
Modífíers may appíy to the tactícs checks as foííows. Add
these modífíers to your roíí:
Situation Modifier
Ma|oríty of soídíers on síde are green
or mííítía
-10
Ma|oríty of soídíers on síde are
reguíars
+0
Ma|oríty of soídíers on síde are
veterans
+10
Ma|oríty of soídíers on síde are eííte +20
Ma|oríty of soídíers on síde are pooríy
equípped
-10
Ma|oríty of soídíers on síde are
superbíy equípped
+10
Síde has heíght advantage +10
Síde ín good cover +10
Síde has good moraíe +10
Síde has poor moraíe -10
Síde has fíre support (cannons) +10
Fírst round of an ambush +30 to
ambushíng
síde
In a boardíng actíon, the defendíng síde has a +10 bonus
untíí they íose a round of combat. Untíí they íose they are
consídered to be hoídíng the boarders off, once they íose
a round the boarders have managed to get onboard and
the odds are more even. If a shíp has swíveí guns ít's
troops are consídered to have fíre support. Most navaí
shíps and pírates have swíveí guns, most merchants do
not.
In a íand battíe fíre support comes from artíííery (cannon,
mortars and howítzers).
2etreat E Surrender
Generaííy speakíng a non-píayer character controííed
force wííí attempt to retreat íf they have taken haíf of
theír startíng number as casuaítíes. If they have íost 75%
of theír startíng force the retreat wííí turn ínto a rout. A
force that cannot retreat (because íts routes of escape are
cut off) wííí surrender uníess there ís a very good reason
not to.
Characters in mass combat
Every tíme the characters sídes íeader roíís doubíes on
theír Tactícs check an opportuníty for índívíduaí heroísm
aríses. The GM shouíd create a specífíc actíon for the
píayer characters to partícípate ín, such as:
• In a boardíng actíon, a píayer character míght
come face to face wíth the enemy captaín.
• Duríng a íand battíe the píayer characters míght
have to take an enemy gun posítíon íf theír síde
ís wínníng, or hoíd off an enemy assauít íf theír
síde ís íosíng.
• Píayer characters míght have to race to prevent
a vítaí brídge beíng destroyed.
• And so on...
Thís ínteríude ís píayed out before the next mass combat
round begíns.
d
5>
8harges laid against John Aacman aa 08alico Jac1 and his cre#
The four charges against the prisoners are as follo#sF
1' That they -did piratically$ feloniously$ and in an hostile manner$ attac$ engage$ and tae$ seven certain
fishing !oats- and -that they assulted the fisherman and stole their fishing !oats- and -that they assulted the
fisherman and stole their fish and fishing tacle-'
2' That they did -upon the high seas$ in a certain place$ distance a!out three leagues from the island of
*ispaniola'''set upon$ shoot at$ and tae$ t#o certain merchant sloops$- and did assault James Do!!in
and other mariners'
5' That on the high sea a!out five leagues from Port "aria Bay in the island of Jamaica they did shoot
at and tae a schooner commanded !y Thomas 2penlo# and put 2penlo# and other mariners -in corporeal
fear of their lives'-
6' That a!out one league from Dry *ar!our Bay$ Jamaica$ they did !oard and enter a merchant sloop
called "ary$ commanded !y Thomas Dillon$ and did steal and carry a#ay the sloop and her tacle'
-<ovem!er 1> at 1321 2panish To#n$ Jamaica
53
Introduction
The foííowíng sectíon provídes a varíety of ruíes whích
govern íífe aboard shíp and shíp operatíons. These are
ímportant to píay as crews wííí spend much of theír tíme
aboard shíp.
*y"es of Shi"s
Shíps ín Prívateers and Pírates are defíned by the
foííowíng ínformatíon:
Manoeu,re Score <MS=4 The shíps Manoeuvre Score,
how weíí she saíís. Lower ís better.
Cre+4 The normaí crew for a shíp of that síze
1
.
Guns4 The number of guns the shíp mounts.
*y"e
M
S
C
r
e
+
G
u
n
s
1
st
rate Shíps of the Líne 60 800 100
2
nd
rate Shíps of the Líne 60 700 96
3
rd
rate Shíps of the Líne 60 600 72
4
th
rate Frígate 50 500 56
Large 5
th
rate Frígate 50 400 44
Smaíí 5
th
rate Frígate 50 300 36
6
th
rate Frígate 50 200 24
Large Brígantíne 60 200 32
Large Síoop 60 200 32
Bríg
2
(two-masted square rígged) 40 100 16
Síoop (shíp rígged) 40 100 16
Schooner 40 75 12
Gunboat or Gunbríg 30 20 8
Cutter 20 20 4
Físhíng Smack 50 10 -
Lugger 60 10 2
Merchant Carríer 80 100* 16
Dutch Fíeut 70 80* 8
East Indíaman 70 300* 34
Gaííeon 70 200* 72
Gaííey 50 300* 12
*These shíps are prímarííy merchant vesseís and usuaííy
run at íess than one quarter maxímum crew.
Unííke other vehícíes, shíps do not have a "damage code
requíred to damage", ínstead they use theír own ruíes for
damage, whích are covered ín the shíp to shíp combat
sectíon further down.
In game terms, warshíps íarger than síoops and brígs are
"rated", for exampíe fírst rate, second rate and so on. A
shíps "rate" ís determíned by ít's number of guns as
shown on the tabíe beíow. Note that guns are aíways
mounted ín paírs (one facíng port, one facíng starboard),
so a shíps broadsíde (fíríng aíí guns on one síde at a
target) ís haíf íts totaí number of guns. In addítíon, most
1 The shíp can operate wíth one quarter thís number at
no modífíer. Beíow that number she can stííí be, but
haíves her number of guns fíríng ín an attack due to
undermanníng and beíow one tenth that number she
cannot even be saííed.
2 Aíso caííed a Brígantíne.
shíps carry some smaíí caííbre guns whích can fíre fore
and aft, known as fore and stern chasers (assume one
fore and one stern gun for every ten maín guns).
The Spanísh and French díd both possess a handfuí of
vesseís wíth more than 110 guns, íncíudíng the French
Oríent (112 gun) and the Spanísh Santíssíma Trínídad
(136).
Shi" Costs
For the sake of argument use the same príces for an earíy
or íate campaígn.
A shíps cost, ín pounds, ís equaí to the number of guns ít
mounts tímes one thousand (so a 100 gun fírst rate shíp
of the ííne costs £100,000).
If a shíp has no guns (such as a físhíng smack), assume
ít's príce to be 300 pounds.
*he Shi"s 2ate
A shíp´s ´rate´ was maíníy decíded by the number of guns
she carríed, from the íargest 136- gun Fírst Rate, down to
Síxth Rate 24-gun shíps. The smaííer ´unrated´ vesseís
(síoops, brígs, bomb vesseís, etc.) were commanded by
more |uníor offícers (Commanders, Líeutenants) but a
´rated´ shíp was aíways a Captaín´s command and aíways
shíp rígged (havíng three square rígged masts).
.irst 2ate4 The bíggest shíps of the fíeet, wíth theír guns
on three decks. Fírst rates were generaííy used as
fíagshíps and fought ín the centre of the ííne-of-battíe.
They were armed wíth a mínímum of 100 heavy cannon,
carríed a crew of about 850 and were over 2000 tons
Buííder´s Measure (a formuía for caícuíatíng the capacíty
of the shíp, not the díspíacement of the shíp as ís the
practíce nowadays).
Second 2ate4 The Second Rate shíps of the ííne were
aíso three-deckers ííke the fírst rates, but smaííer, wíth a
reputatíon for poor handííng and síow saíííng. They
mounted between 90 and 98 guns, and aíso fought ín the
centre of the ííne-of-battíe. Generaííy around the 2000 ton
mark, they had a crew of approxímateíy 750. Líke the
Fírst Rates, they had 32 pounder guns on the gundeck,
but 18 pounders ínstead of 24 pounders on the míddíe
deck, wíth 12 pounders on the upper deck (compared to
18 or 24 pounders on Fírst Rates). Unííke the Fírst Rates,
whích were too vaíuabíe to rísk ín dístant statíons, the
Second Rates often served overseas as fíagshíps.
*hird 2ate4 The most common shíps of the ííne were the
two-decker Thírd Rates, wíth between 64 and 80 guns.
The most effectíve and numerous of these was the 74 gun
shíp, ín many ways the ídeaí compromíse of economy,
fíghtíng power and saíííng performance, and formíng the
core of the battíefíeet.
.ourth 2ate4 Two decker shíps of 50 to 60 guns, were,
by the end of the 18th century, no íonger reckoned to be
´fít to stand ín the ííne of battíe´. Despíte thís, 50 gun
shíps were heavííy engaged, ín the ííne, at the battíes of
Camperdown and Copenhagen. Wíth two decks, theír
extra accommodatíon made them suítabíe fíagshíps for
mínor overseas statíons, whííe theír reíatíveíy shaííow
draught made them suítabíe as headquarter shíps for
antí-ínvasíon operatíons ín the North Sea and the Engíísh
Channeí. They were aíso usefuí as convoy escorts,
troopshíps and even, on occasíon, as convíct transports.
In normaí servíce they had a maín armament of 18
pounders, a crew of 350 and measured around 1000 tons.
Sometímes fourth rates are referred to as Frígates, at
54
other tímes as Shíps of the Líne. In game terms they are
consídered to be Frígates.
.ifth 2ate4 These were the "true" frígates, the Navy´s
´gíamour shíps´. A frígates maín armament was íocated on
a síngíe gun deck. The Frígates served as "the eyes of the
fíeet" operatíng as fast scouts of the battíefíeet. At other
tímes they operated ín an índependent cruísíng roíe,
searchíng out enemy merchant shíps, prívateers or enemy
fíeets. Deveíoped from earíy-18th century prototypes, the
Fífth Rates of Neíson´s tíme had a varíety of armaments
and gun arrangements, from 32 gun shíps armed wíth 12
pounders to 36 and 38-gun frígates wíth 18 pounders,
even some 40 gun shíps and cut down two-deckers wíth
24 pounders. Captured enemy frígates were aíso used ín
servíce, and many of the best Brítísh-buíít shíps were
copíed or adapted from French desígns. A fífth rate
typícaííy had a crew of 250 to 300 men. In game terms
fífth rates are dívíded ínto two cíasses, Large (40-48 guns)
and Smaíí (30-38 guns).
Si&th 2ate4 The Síxth Rates were smaííer and more
ííghtíy armed frígates, wíth between 22 and 28 níne-
pounder guns, a crew of about 150, and measuríng 450 to
550 tons. There were never enough frígates; whííe Lord
Neíson was searchíng for the French fíeet before the
battíe of the Nííe he saíd, ´Frígates! Were I to díe thís
moment, want of frígates wouíd be found engraved on my
heart!´.
d
Unrated vesseís íncíuded the foííowíng:
S-oo": A síoop of war was a vesseí commanded by an
offícer wíth the rank of Commander. Síoops couíd be
armed wíth between 10 and 20 guns, be shíp rígged or
brígs (two-masted square ríg) and were capabíe of most
of the tasks undertaken by frígates, wíth the exceptíon of
fíeet reconnaíssance. They were often armed wíth
carronades, gívíng them a heavy punch at cíose range.
The cruíser cíass (a specífíc cíass of síoop) was the most
numerous cíass of saíííng warshíps ever buíít, over 100 of
these 380 ton, 18 gun bríg síoops beíng buíít. They
carríed a crew of 120 men.
?omb ,esse-s and fireshi"s4 Deveíoped from two-
masted craft (ketches) armed wíth mortars for shore
bombardment, and fírst used by the French ín the íate
17th century, the bomb vesseí of the íate 18th century
had shíp ríg. The fíreshíp, íntended as a means of settíng
an enemy shíp on fíre, was often a converted merchant
shíp, though some were specíaííy buíít for the Royaí Navy.
Both the bomb vesseí and the fíreshíp were oníy seídom
used ín theír desígned roíe, but proved usefuí as patroí or
convoy escort síoops.
Gunboats and #unbri#s4 These were smaíí, two-masted
vesseís, a Líeutenant´s command, and orígínaííy íntended
for antí-ínvasíon patroí. Later, they deveíoped ínto more
capabíe vesseís, fít for a varíety of tasks. They were buíít
to a wíde varíety of cíasses, and often had evocatíve
names, for ínstance Grappíer, Growíer and Gríper were
three ´Courser´ Cíass gunbrígs.
Cutters4 The smaííest warshíps ín servíce, cutters were
deveíoped from craft used by Engíísh smuggíers. These
síngíe masted vesseís were buíít for speed and empíoyed
as patroí boats and díspatch carríers.
Merchant Carriers4 275ft ín íength and 80ft wíde, the
Merchant Carríer ís a streamííned shíp desígned to carry
cargo and passengers across the Atíantíc ín under a
month. Merchant Carríers typícaííy run at íess than one
quarter crew to save money.
0utch .-eut4 80ft ín íength, broad and fíat bottomed, the
Dutch fíeuts were orígínaííy deveíoped to work around the
coasts of Europe, but such an effectíve desígn was rapídíy
copíed and found aíí over the woríd. Fíeuts typícaííy run at
íess than one quarter crew to save money.
ast Indiaman4 200ft íong, East Indíamen are íarge
shíps desígned to spend extended períods at sea. They
were orígínaííy deveíoped to servíce the Indía trade,
saíííng from Indía to Europe ín a síngíe voyage, though
they can be found aíí over the woríd.
Ga--eon4 The orígínaí Gaííeons were Spanísh treasure
shíps. Most merchants opted for speed, evasíon and
surrender over fíghtíng, whereas the gaííeons were
desígned as formídabíe fíghtíng píatforms. Unfortunateíy
there desígn renders them hard to maneuver ín cíose
quarters battíe.
Ga--ey4 Gaííeys are prímarííy oar powered, wíth square
rígged saíís whích are raísed to conserve effort on íong
voyages. They are prímarííy íntended to operate near the
coast. Gaííeys carry few guns, ínstead theír preferred
tactíc ís to cíose rapídíy on a foe and board them. Even a
smaíí gaííey wííí typícaííy have at íeast one hundred
pírates/marínes who wííí swarm aboard an enemy vesseí
on contact.
Shi"s by Cam"ai#n
In a íate campaígn Gaííeons wííí not be used. Aíí other shíp
types are avaííabíe. Gaííeys wííí oníy typícaííy be
encountered ín the hands of Barbary Corsaírs, operatíng
off the Afrícan coast.
In an earíy campaígn the íargest warshíps ín servíce were
thírd rate shíps of the ííne.
5?
Puttin# to Sea
Generaííy speakíng a shíp at sea ís eíther tryíng to get
from one píace to another, or ís saíííng around a specífíc
area íookíng for prey. In the case of a pírate or prívateer,
that prey ís merchantmen. In the case of a warshíp, that
prey ís eíther pírates or enemy shíppíng.
*ra,e--in# from "-ace to "-ace
To determíne the traveí tíme between two ports refer to
the traveí tíme tabíes ín Appendíx two. The Navígator of
the shíp makes a DIFF 50 Navígatíon(sea) check for each
|ourney and the resuít modífíes the tíme taken as foííows:
• .ai-ure4 |ourney takes twíce as íong as íísted.
• Success4 |ourney takes tíme as íísted.
If you roíí a crítícaí success or faííure on your Navígatíon
check you have encountered somethíng en route, roíí on
the encounter tabíe. If you got a crítícaí success you can
decíde whích díce ís tens after roíííng on the encounter
tabíe.
:untin#
The Captaín of a shíp whích ís huntíng for prey shouíd
make a Saíííng(píracy) check every day íf near a port
and/or on a trade route, or once a week íf at sea
anywhere eíse. On a success roíí on the Encounter tabíe
to determíne what you have encountered. You may decíde
whích díce ís tens after roíííng on the tabíe.
ncounters at Sea
If you encounter somethíng at sea, roíí d100 on the tabíe
beíow to determíne what ít ís. You may spend a Drama
poínt to re-roíí a roíí on the tabíe, íf you wísh.
0100 ncounter
01-40 Nothíng of ínterest
41-65 Bad Weather
66-85 Merchant Shíp (doubíes means a convoy,
otherwíse a síngíe shíp)
86-95 Prívateer or Pírate (doubíes means a pack,
otherwíse a síngíe shíp)
96-00 Warshíp (doubíes means a squadron,
otherwíse a síngíe shíp)
?ad 1eather
The Heímsman must make a DIFF 50 Saíííng check to
avoíd the shíp sínkíng. A success means the shíp ís okay,
a faííure sínks her. Characters aboard a shíp whích sínks
díe íf they do not Cheat death. As a guídeííne, bad
weather ís typícaííy beaufort force 10 or more (storm
condítíons).
Merchant
You have encountered a íone merchant shíp, easy
píckíngs. A convoy consísts of a group of 2d10/2
merchant shíps saíííng ín convoy. If there are fíve or more
shíps there wííí be a síngíe frígate wíth the convoy. Refer
to the Shíp to Shíp encounter sectíon beíow for more
ínformatíon on how to resoíve thís encounter. A merchant
vesseí wííí try to escape combat íf attacked.
Pirate or Pri,ateer
You have encountered a íone pírate or prívateer (roíí
1d10; 1-5 Pírate, 6-0 Prívateer). A convoy consísts of
2d10/4 shíps workíng together. In the case of a prívateer,
roíí d10. On an even roíí the prívateer ís fríendíy or
neutraí, on an odd roíí ít ís hostííe. Refer to the Shíp to
Shíp encounter sectíon beíow for more ínformatíon on
how to resoíve thís encounter. A fríendíy or neutraí
prívateer wííí normaííy come aíongsíde, trade, exchange
storíes and generaííy ííaíse. A hostííe prívateer or pírate
wííí attack íf they thínk they can wín.
1arshi"
Roíí 1d10 to determíne what you have encountered:
d10 1arshi"
1 A síngíe cutter
2-3 A síngíe síoop or bríg
4-6 A síxth rate frígate
7-0 A fífth rate frígate
Roíí 1d10. On an even roíí the warshíp ís fríendíy or
neutraí. On an odd roíí ít ís hostííe.
A squadron compríses 2d10 dívíded by four, (round up)
Shíps of the Líne of varíous sízes. Each Shíp of the Líne ís
accompaníed by a síngíe frígate. Refer to the Shíp to Shíp
encounter sectíon beíow for more ínformatíon on how to
resoíve thís encounter. A fríendíy or neutraí warshíp wííí
pass by wíth a wave. A hostííe warshíp wííí attack íf they
thínk they can wín (í.e. If theír shíp ís bígger).
?rin#in# to ?att-e
Once shíps have encountered one another the next step ís
to eíther escape or be bought to battíe. If both shíps wísh
to escape, the encounter ends.
If eíther shíp wíshes to bríng the other to battíe the píayer
character Captaín must make an opposed Saíííng check
agaínst the Saíííng skííí of the other Captaín. If the píayer
characters wíns, they can escape or engage. If they íose
the other shíp decídes what happens.
2eso-,in# ncounters
Once two shíps have engaged the GM shouíd run the
encounter through. Communícatíon ís by a míxture of
shoutíng across the water and usíng sígnaí íamps and
fíags.
Sígnaíííng checks may be appropríate ín bad weather, to
avoíd míscommunícatíon.
e
6.
Sea ?att-es
More often than not, encounters end ín shots beíng
exchanged. To resoíve a battíe at sea use these ruíes.
Shíp to Shíp combat ís dívíded ínto rounds, wíth each
round íastíng ten mínutes. Each round ís conducted as a
seríes of steps, as foííows:
1. At the start of each round each heímsman makes
a Saíííng check wíth the shíps Manoeuvre Score
as the DIFF number.
2. Any shíp whích faííed ít's Saíííng check cannot
fíre thís round, they have been outmanoeuvred
3. Shíps that succeeded can attack other shíps. If
the heímsman roííed a crítícaí success on theír
Saíííng check theír shíp can attack twíce thís
round (agaínst the same or dífferent targets).
4. An attack ínfíícts casuaítíes on the target equaí
to the number of guns fíríng and aíso destroys a
number of the targets guns equaí to one-tenth of
the number of guns fíríng, rounded up.
For example, a hit from a "+ gun ship inflicts "+
casualties and destroys eight guns ("+<*&-".+,
which rounds up to eight).
5. The heímsman who succeeded wíth the híghest
roíí may opt not to fíre and then dísengage from
the battíe after fíríng has been resoíved. In the
event of a draw, wíth two or more shíps roíííng
the híghest score, no one can dísengage ín that
round. A shíp whích dísengages ís out of the
battíe untíí they choose to return.
6. If aíí of a shíps crew have become casuaítíes, ít ís
dísabíed and out of actíon.
7. If aíí of a shíps guns have been destroyed ít
sínks.
8. Once aíí shíps have fíred and/or dísengaged, the
next round starts (step two above).
Gun Cre+s
Note that each gun requíres a crew of four to fíre
effectíveíy. In practíse that means that a shíp can fíre a
maxímum number of guns equaí to one-quarter ít's
current crew.
Cre+in#
Warshíps generaííy run wíth doubíe the number of crew
needed to man aíí theír guns (so they can absorb
casuaítíes and stííí contínue to fíght effectíveíy). Merchant
shíps usuaííy oníy have enough crew to man haíf of theír
totaí guns.
(ndercre+in#
If a shíp has íess than one-quarter ít's maxímum crew ít
has a -10 on any Saíííng checks requíred.
?oardin#
In a round, a Shíp can opt to try and board another shíp
rather than fíríng at ít. To board you must have succeeded
at your Saíííng check and your opponent must be wííííng
to aííow the boardíng or have faííed theír Saíííng check
(one or the other).
The boardíng occurs after the fíríng phase. Once you
board, the two shíps are íocked together and the boardíng
actíon must be resoíved usíng the mass combat ruíes.
Usuaííy, the Ouartermaster íeads the boardíng actíon (or
the Master at Arms aboard a Navaí shíp). The shíps can
oníy break apart once the boardíng actíon has been
resoíved one way or the other.
Note that mass combat and sea battíe rounds are the
same íength (ten mínutes) and are resoíved
símuítaneousíy.
Whííst a boardíng actíon ís beíng resoíved, both shíps ín
the actíon are treated as automatícaííy faíííng theír Saíííng
checks for the round.
C-e,er P-ans
If the GM feeís that the characters aboard a shíp have
come up wíth an íngeníous pían they may gíve them +10
or even +20 to theír Saíííng check ín a round. Píans are
made before any checks are made for the round.
*reacherous 1aters
If a heímsman crítícaííy faíís theír Saíííng check whííst
fíghtíng ín treacherous waters (such as beíng very near to
the coast, mud fíats, sand banks or reefs) they have run
aground. A shíp whích has run aground ís treated as
faíííng ít's Saíííng checks for every round from now on.
If the shíp ran aground on mud fíats or sand banks ít can
be fíoated off after the battíe ends (assumíng ít ísn't
destroyed). If the shíp ran aground on rocky reefs or the
coast ít ís consídered destroyed and any píayer
characters aboard must Cheat death or díe wíth the shíp.
Shore ?atteries
Shore batteríes are heavy cannons on íand, fíríng out to
sea. A gíven shore battery may have one or more guns
and can aíways fíre at one target per round. Shore
batteríes do not make Saíííng checks at the start of the
round. Instead, they can automatícaííy fíre at any shíp
whích faííed ít's Saíííng check, ínfííctíng damage as
normaí. Attacks agaínst shore batteríes ínfííct one-tenth
normaí damage, roundíng up, whích refíects theír heavy
empíacements and strong constructíon.
For example, a "+ gun ship would inflict 8 casualties on a
shore battery and destroy * gun.
Chainshot
The Gunner can íoad chaínshot to attack theír opponents
saíís. Rather then ínfííctíng casuaítíes and destroyíng
guns, íncrease the targets Manoeuvre score by one-tenth
of the number of guns fíríng.
0isab-ement and Sin6in#
Once aíí of a shíps crew has become casuaítíes ít ís
consídered dísabíed and unabíe to do anythíng at aíí.
Once a shíp ís reduced to one-quarter of ít's normaí crew
(due to undermanníng or casuaítíes), reduce ít's
Manoeuvre score by ten poínts.
If aíí of a shíps guns are destroyed, ít sínks.
2e"airs
Guns íost ín battíe cannot be repaíred and must be
repíaced by eíther buyíng new guns from port (at a cost of
£300 each) or steaííng them from someone eíse.
Repíacement crew can be obtaíned easííy ín most ports.
If a shíp íoses haíf or more of ít's guns ín a síngíe battíe ít
has suffered seríous huíí damage and must put ínto port
for repaírs wíthín 2d10 days, or sínk. Such repaírs cost
10% of the shíps purchase príce.
If íess than haíf a shíps guns are íost ín a battíe the
damage ít has taken ís not severe enough to requíre
puttíng ínto port. For game purposes, ít can effectíveíy be
ígnored as the crew perform runníng repaírs at sea.
Casua-ties in Sea ?att-es
After the battíe ends the shíps surgeon shouíd make a
DIFF 50 Heaííng(surgery) check for each casuaíty. If they
succeed the casuaíty recovers fíne. If they faíí that
casuaíty díes.
Character Casua-ties in Sea ?att-es
If the heímsman faíís theír Saíííng check wíth a roíí of
doubíes, a random píayer character aboard that shíp
takes damage equaí to the sum of the faííed roíís díce, íf
the shíp ís attacked duríng the round.
61
For example, the /elmsman fails with a roll of )). .heir
ship is attacked during the round, so a random player
character takes a (pt wound (),)-().
2eso-,in# Surrender
Oníy fanatícs wííí fíght untíí theír shíp ís sunk. Most
Captaíns wííí surrender once they reaííse that the battíe ís
íost. Píayer characters are never compeííed to surrender,
ít ís aíways theír choíce. If a píayer character Captaín caíís
upon an enemy to surrender they shouíd make an
Infíuence check opposed by the targets Wííí check. If the
píayer character wíns the other shíp surrenders. The GM
shouíd appíy a modífíer from +30 to -30 to the píayers
check based on how seríous a threat they pose to the
other shíp (-30 íf askíng for a surrender ís a |oke, to +30 íf
the píayer Captaín ís hoídíng aíí the cards).
Pri@e Money
Warshíps are aíways worth theír íísted vaíue. Merchant
shíps have a varíabíe vaíue, dependíng on theír cargo.
Theír vaíue equaís theír íísted vaíue (number of guns
x£1000) píus the vaíue of theír cargo.
To determíne the vaíue of the cargo on a captured
merchant shíp roíí d100.
If you are huntíng ín partícuíaríy "rích" waters, where you
expect to fínd weaíthy prey, read the d100 roíí as híghest
díce fírst. In partícuíaríy poor waters, read the d100 roíí as
íowest díce fírst, otherwíse state whích díce ís tens before
roíííng.
If you roíí doubíes roíí agaín and add on. If the next roíí ís
aíso doubíes roíí and add on agaín, contínue doíng thís
untíí you faíí to roíí doubíes.
The roíí ís the vaíue of the cargo, ín thousands of pounds.
But remember, you oníy receíve haíf the vaíue of the
captured shíp and cargo (haíf ís íost to the admíraíty or
government íf you are a prívateer, or to fences íf you are
a pírate).
For example, if you capture a merchant carrier (worth
=*(,&&&) in rich waters and rolled %+ on d*&&, it would
hae a =%+,&&& cargo aboard. >hen this was li'uidated
you would hae =+(,&&& in cash from the cargo and
=8,&&& for the ship itself, to share amongst the crew,
because half the alue is lost when the ship and cargo is
sold.
0i,ision of Pri@e Money
The method of dívísíon of príze money between the crew
ís defíned ín the charter of the shíp, whích each crew
member sígns up to when |oíníng the shíp. There are
three generaí ways of spííttíng the príze dependíng on
whether the shíp ís a prívateer, pírate or mííítary vesseí. If
more than one shíp ís present at the capture of a príze the
príze vaíue ís spíít equaííy between aíí shíps, even íf some
shíps took no part ín the actíon (ít was generaííy agreed
that an enemy vesseí wouíd respond dífferentíy to a
greater number of enemíes, so ít was faír to spíít the príze
thís way. In practíse most crews resented thís ruíe and
went out of theír to make soío captures).
Pri,ateer >esse-s
Aíí captured assets are ííquídated at the end of the
voyage and 75% of the príze ís shared between the
ínvestors, the captaín and the offícers. The remaíníng
25% ís spíít between the rest of the crew.
Pirate Shi"s
The príze money (ííquídated vaíue of captured cargo and
shíps) ís shared out amongst the crew, wíth certaín posts
receívíng more than one share.
• The Captaín and Ouartermaster receíve two
shares each.
• The Master Gunner and Boatswaín receíve one
and a quarter shares each.
• Aíí other crewmen receíve one share each.
Thís ís a more or íess standard dívísíon and can vary from
shíp to shíp. The dívísíon of príze money ís aíways íaíd
down ín the shíps Charter.
Mi-itary >esse-s
Aíí captured assets (shíps and cargo) are turned over to
the admíraíty at the end of the voyage. A Príze court then
decídes on the spíít whích ís normaííy as foííows:
• 1/3
rd
of the Captaíns share goes to the Admíraí
commandíng the fíeet (íf the shíp was operatíng
as part of a fíeet). If the admíraí has any |uníor
fíag offícers beíow them they take ½ and the
other ½ of theír share ís spíít between these
|uníor fíag offícers.
• 2/8 to the Captaín.
• 1/8 spíít between Captaíns of marínes,
Líeutenants, Masters and Surgeons.
• 1/8 spíít between Líeutenant of Marínes,
secretary of the Admíraí, Príncípaí warrant
offícers, Chapíaíns
• 4/8 spíít between Mídshípmen, ínferíor warrant
offícers, príncípaí warrant offícers mates, maríne
sergeants and everyone eíse
f
62
Sea 0o#s
What ís a shíp wíthout a crew? Thís sectíon provídes more
ínformatíon on the crew of a shíp and theír dutíes.
-ection of 'fficers
Most prívateer crews are veterans of one of the navíes of
the great powers of the era. Most of the offícers of Navaí
shíps are there by vírtue of breedíng and patronage,
rather than competence, so these pírate saííors are more
than famíííar wíth the probíems created by crueí and/or
íncompetent íeaders. An apprecíatíon of the ínherent
dangers of beíng at sea and the need for quaííty
command had íed to them eíectíng theír own offícers, thus
aííowíng an offícer to be removed (often bíoodííy) íf they
demonstrated íncompetence or unnecessary crueíty to
the crew.
Consequentíy aíí the offícers of a prívateer are eíected
democratícaííy by the crew, and can be removed from
offíce ín the same way.
Im"ortant Positions
There are varíous members of the crew who are key to
the shíps functíoníng. Píayer characters shouíd seek to
take one roíe each, wíth any remaíníng píayer characters
takíng on the roíe of mates to another character.
Ca"tain
The Captaín ís ín overaíí command of the vesseí. On a
prívateer the captaín ís eíected by the ma|oríty vote of the
crew and can be uneíected |ust as easííy. The captaín
must show a sound grasp of seamanshíp and navígatíon,
a skííífuí hand ín managíng peopíe and some íuck ín
fíndíng suítabíe prey. The captaíns posítíon ís somewhat
precaríous and they must aíways be aware of the feeííngs
of theír crew.
Probabíy the síngíe most ímportant skííí for a captaín ís
the abíííty to read the crews mood and act accordíngíy.
Not aíí pírates are bíoodthírsty psychopaths, and a
captaín ís as ííkeíy to be sacked for beíng too weak as too
harsh.
.irst Mate
Not aíí shíps have a fírst mate. If the shíp does have a fírst
mate they are, ín effect, the Captaíns ríght hand man. On
a navaí vesseí the fírst mates roíe wouíd be fíííed by the
seníor ííeutenant, who wouíd fííí the captaíns shoes íf he
was íost ín battíe. On most pírate shíps the Ouartermaster
wouíd take on the Captaíns roíe íf he was íost ín battíe,
makíng the fírst mate redundant.
Second Mate
The second mate has a very símííar roíe to the fírst mate
but ííes under them ín the peckíng order aboard shíp.
Auartermaster
The Ouartermaster ís eíected by the ma|oríty vote of the
crew to íook out for the ínterests. He deaís wíth crew
díscípííne, food and suppííes. Technícaííy the Captaín ís
the rankíng offícer on a shíp, but ín practíce the
Ouartermaster often had more weíght than the captaín
except ín combat. He usuaííy íeads any boardíng partíes
and ís ííkeíy to take command of any captured vesseís.
Seríous crímes are tríed by a |ury of the crew, but mínor
offences are summarííy handíed by the Ouartermaster. In
the event of a crew |ury decreeíng a fíoggíng the
Ouartermaster ís the one to carry ít out.
Sai-in# Master
The saíííng master ís ín charge of pííotíng and navígatíon.
Thís ís a specíaíísed, and weíí paíd, |ob. Consequentíy
most saíííng masters had no ínterest ín rískíng íífe and
íímb aboard a prívateer and many saíííng masters were
kídnapped from merchant servíce to serve aboard
prívateers.
?oats+ain
The Boatswaín ís ín charge of maíntenance and ensuríng
suppííes are kept up. Each morníng the Boatswaín must
ínspect aíí of the shíps saíís and ríggíng and they aíso
controííed aíí deck actívítíes, such as raísíng or íoweríng
the anchor, raísíng or íoweríng saíís and coíííng ropes.
Boatswaín ís usuaííy abbrevíated to "Bosun". Seamen
chosen by the Bosun to work wíth hím are known as "day
men" as they oníy normaííy work ín the daytíme and
stand no níght watches. Day men are usuaííy the best
quaíífíed saííors on the shíp.
Master Gunner
The master gunner ís ín charge of the shíps weapons. Thís
íncíudes maíntenance, keepíng the powder ready to use
and traíníng the gun crews. Beíng Hard of Hearíng ís
common ín master gunners.
Car"enter
The Carpenter ís responsíbíe for the maíntenance and
repaír of the wooden huíí, masts and yards. He works
under the dírectíon of the shíp's Master and Boatswaín.
The Carpenter checks the huíí reguíaríy, píacíng oakum
between the seems of the píanks and wooden píugs on
íeaks to keep the vesseí tíght.
Mate
On a íarge shíp there was usuaííy more than one Mate
aboard. The Mate serves as apprentíce to the Shíp's
Master, Boatswaín, Carpenter and Gunner. He handíes the
fíttíng out of the vesseí, and examínes whether ít ís
suffícíentíy províded wíth ropes, puííeys, saíís, and aíí the
other ríggíng that ís necessary for the voyage. The Mate
takes care of hoístíng the anchor, and duríng a voyage he
checks the tackíe once a day. If he observes anythíng
amíss, he reports ít to the shíp's Master. Arrívíng at a port,
the mate causes the cabíes and anchors to be repaíred,
and takes care of the management of the saíís, yards and
mooríng of the shíp.
Sai-or
The common saííors are the backbones of the shíp and
need to know the ríggíng and the saíís. As weíí as how to
steer the shíp and appíyíng ít to the purposes of
navígatíon. He needed to know how to read the skíes,
weather, wínds and most ímportantíy the moods of hís
commanders. Other |obs on the shíps were surgeon (for
íarge vesseís), cooks and cabín boys. There were many
|obs dívíded up amongst the offícers, sometímes one man
wouíd perform two functíons. Mates who served
apprentíceshíps were expected to fííí ín or take over
posítíons when síckness or death created an opportuníty.
Some saííors are known as "íeadíng saííors", these are the
more seníor saííors aboard shíp, responsíbíe for managíng
theír watch.
65
Marine
Marínes are soídíers specífícaííy traíned to operate
aboard, and from, shíps. Vírtuaííy aíí navaí shíps maíntaín
a maríne contíngent. In peace tíme the marínes act as
guards and poííce aboard shíp and ín war tíme they form
the boardíng teams for a vesseí. Pírate vesseís rareíy had
a specífíc maríne contíngent, ín a boardíng actíon every
saííor grabs a weapon and fíghts.
g
2etirement
Sooner or íater even the most hardened pírate or
prívateer begíns to thínk of retíríng. Thís normaííy comes
about after eíther a run of very bad íuck, a few near
mísses or a very íarge hauí. In the case of a prívateer
retírement ís easy, you |ust saíí to wherever you wísh to
retíre to (provídíng íts a fríendíy píace), seíí up and settíe
down. For pírates retírement ís somewhat more díffícuít.
Some pírates move to Madagascar and settíe there,
others opt to try and buy favour wíth the Government of
the country of theír choíce, íookíng to buy a pardon for
theír mísdeed, then settíe down.
Thís ísn't too díffícuít as most retíríng are very weaíthy
and such an ínfíux of money ínto a communíty ís
weícomed, especíaííy íf the pírate has renounced theír
príor deeds.
In game terms, when a pírate character decídes to retíre
they must approach the reíevant authorítíes and make a
Luck check. Succeed or Faíí, they íose a percentage of
theír current Weaíth equaí to the roíí. If they succeed they
have bríbed the ríght peopíe and retíre ínto bííssfuí peace
and quíet. If they faíí they stííí íose theír weaíth, but have
been betrayed.
In the case of betrayaí, the authorítíes come for the pírate
shortíy after theír "retírement" and the GM shouíd run a
scenarío accordíngíy, as the pírate tríes to escape the
authorítíes.
Life %board Shi"
Lífe aboard a saíííng shíp ís pretty uncomfortabíe, what
wíth the rats gnawíng at the food, huíí and anythíng eíse,
cramped and dírty quarters for the crew, the smeíí of
spoííed or ínfested food and fouí water.
Shípboard íífe ís best descríbed as months of boredom
ínterspersed wíth mínutes of sheer terror. Saííors spend
most of theír day takíng care of the routíne maíntenance
of the shíp, íncíudíng patchíng saíís, spíícíng ropes and
hackíng out oíd oakum and repíacíng ít wíth fresh oakum
to keep the huíí watertíght. Períodícaííy, the crew seek out
a hídden cove and careen the shíp, beachíng ít so that
when the tíde goes out they can scrape the barnacíes off
the huíí (barnacíes síow down the shíp) and remove the
shíp worms whích bore ínto the wood (creatíng smaíí
íeaks).
Seaman tended to síng, carve wood, píay cards, roíí díce
and dance |ígs as ways of entertaíníng themseíves whííst
at sea. Most shíps artícíes forbíd gambííng, as ít tends to
íead to arguments and víoíence, causíng díssent ín the
crew. Tobacco ís chewed when at sea, rather than
smoked, to avoíd the fíre rísk.
When pírates come ashore they tended to squander theír
weaíth on drínk, women and gambííng, usuaííy spendíng
most of theír earníngs before settíng back to sea to earn
some more. One popuíar pastíme amongst pírates ís the
mock tríaí. Each man píayed a part be ít |aííer, íawyer,
|udge, |uror, or hangman. Thís sham court arrested, tríed,
convícted, and "carríed out" the sentence to the
amusement of aíí.
Ashore, some pírates emuíate gentíeman merchants by
wearíng knee breeches, stockíngs, embroídered
waístcoats, íace-trímmed shírts, íong coats, and shoes
wíth sííver buckíes and hígh heeís. A few wear powdered
wígs and/or ornate |eweííery They acquíred these bríghtíy
coíoured garments as shares of booty taken from
captured shíps or buy them ín port.
Whííe at sea, a saííor usuaííy wears one outfít untíí ít ís
vírtuaííy rags. Seamen tend to favour fearnoughts (short
|ackets of heavy bíue or grey cíoth) or canvas coats (ín
fouí weather), red or bíue waístcoats, píaín or checked
shírts (often bíue and whíte), and pettícoat breeches
(canvas trousers cut a few ínches above one´s ankíes).
These were often coated wíth tar to make them
waterproof and to heíp defíect sword thrusts (treat such
tar coated cíothes as thíck íeather |erkíns).
Shoes were worn on shore, but rareíy aboard a shíp and
aíí manner of head wear was normaííy worn to protect
from the burníng heat of the sun. These couíd íncíude
knotted scarves, trícorn hats, or varíous styíes of caps.
Most seamen are young, íífe at sea requíríng consíderabíe
stamína and agíííty whích oíder men do not possess. Work
íncíudes hauííng on wet (and thus heavy) ropes day and
níght, cíímbíng the masts to handíe heavy saíís ín aíí kínds
of weather and manníng the pumps for hours on end.
In good weather the crew wouíd often síeep on the deck,
to escape the stench of tar, bíígewater, anímaís (kept
beíow decks for food) and unwashed bodíes whích
permeated the beíow decks.
Navaí crews have an easíer tíme of ít on the whoíe
(ígnoríng the fact that they míght get kíííed though).
Warshíps have around four tímes as many crew as símííar
sízed cívííían vesseís, aíí the extra men beíng needed to
man the guns, so índívíduaís have a íot íess work to do
than theír cívííían counterparts. Whííst cívííían wages are
hígher, navaí crews stand to gaín a share of the príze
money when an enemy shíp ís taken. A Wíth a bít of íuck
and a skíííed captaín a navaí seaman míght be abíe to
retíre wíth a smaíí fortune. Navaí food ís better than
cívííían food, a good captaín knows that moraíe ís
dependent on the quaííty of the food served, and an
unheaíthy crew cannot fíght as effectíveíy. Díscípííne
tends to be more extreme, but was rareíy admínístered.
The navy aíso uses press gangs to forcíbíy recruít saííors
when short of men. Contrary to rumour, press gangs do
not grab random peopíe off the street, they are íookíng
for cívííían seamen to press ínto servíce, not some
untraíned íandíubber.
The most common reason for an índívíduaí to turn to
píracy or prívateeríng ís to get rích, shares ín the príze
money offeríng a quíck route to fortune, as opposed to a
íífe spent starvíng, beggíng or thíevíng on íand.
Pírates usuaííy kíííed or put ashore peopíe from captured
shíps. Specíaíísts, such as coopers, shípwríghts, pííots and
so forth, were usuaííy forced to |oín the pírate crew, or be
kíííed, a pretty stark choíce. They are referred to as
"forced men", aíthough the íaw made no such
dífferentíatíon between them and those pírates who were
voíunteers.
Another source of pírates was unempíoyed seamen.
Duríng wartíme governments are quíck to empíoy and
create sízeabíe bodíes of seamen, then they are equaííy
quíck to díscharge them after hostííítíes cease. Some of
those now unempíoyed seamen turn to píracy as a way to
66
survíve and there ís usuaííy an upsurge ín píracy
ímmedíateíy after a war.
*ime6ee"in#
A shíp's crew ís dívíded ínto two watches, one of whích
saíís the shíp whííe the other ís off-duty restíng or
síeepíng. One ís the starboard watch and the other the
port watch. Each watch spends four hours on, then four
hours off, day and níght.
Each span of duty íasts 4 hours or 8 beíís and ís aíso
caííed a watch. There ís a míddíe watch, whích íasts from
mídníght untíí 4 am. Then comes the earíy morníng watch
from 4 untíí 8 am, aíso caííed Díana, foííowed by the
morníng watch untíí noon. The afternoon watch ís from
mídday untíí 4 pm. So that each group or watch does not
aíways come on duty at the same tíme, the 4-8 pm watch
ís dívíded ínto two, whích are caííed dog-watches.
The Captaín does not íead a watch, but ís around and
about as needed.
The Second Mate typícaííy íeads the eíght tíí tweíve
watch.
The Saíííng Master typícaííy íeads the tweíve tíí four
watch.
The Ouartermaster or Fírst Mate typícaííy íeads the four tíí
eíght watch.
In port, the normaí watch structure ís usuaííy changed so
that the crew work from 8am to 5pm, wíth an hour for
íunch, then some of them guard the gangway between
5pm and 8am whííst the others reíax or go ashore.
A haíf hour períod of a watch on shípboard ís índícated by
the strokes of a beíí. One ríng (one beíí) haíf an hour ínto
the watch, two ríngs (two beíís) one hour ín, three ríngs
(three beíís) one and a haíf hours, untíí eíght beíís whích
sígnífíes the end of a watch and the start of the new one.
% day aboard shi"
The ínformatíon ín thís sectíon appííes equaííy to pírates,
merchant shíps, prívateers and navaí vesseís.
The popuíar ímage of pírates as a bunch of drunken
chaotíc íayabouts ís quíte dístant from the truth. The sea
ís a harsh místress and anyone who íntends to stay aííve
at sea needs to stíck to precíse ruíes. Díscípííne may not
be quíte as stríct aboard pírate shíps as other vesseís, but
the basíc regímens of daííy íífe are maíntaíned
(remember, most pírates are experíenced seamen who
are quíte used to the procedures of daííy íífe as íaíd out
beíow, from theír days servíng ín more íegaí endeavours).
By tradítíon, the day offícíaííy begíns at noon, when the
date and day of the week are changed on the íog-board.
|ust before noon on a cíear day, the Saíííng Master and hís
Mate measure, wíth theír quadrants, the angíe of the sun
as ít reached íts híghest poínt off the horízon, thus
determíníng íatítude and correctíng the tíme kept by any
chronometers on board. Noon ís reported to the Captaín,
and eíght stokes are struck on the shíp's beíí, foííowed by
the Boatswaín's "pípe to dínner," executed on hís hígh-
pítched sííver whístíe.
As aíready díscussed, the day ís dívíded ínto watches of
four hours apíece, measured by a sandgíass and marked
by a ríngíng of the beíí: eíght beíís at tweíve o'cíock, one
beíí at tweíve-thírty, two at one o'cíock, three at one-thírty
and so on, untíí eíght beíís are reached at four o'cíock,
and the cycíe starts agaín.
Saííors stand theír duty hours ín watches, four hours on
and four off, throughout the day and níght. Shortíy before
four A.M., the Ouartermaster, who has among hís dutíes
keepíng tíme and steeríng the shíp, awakes the reíevant
íeader comíng on duty, and shortíy thereafter, the
Boatswaín stands at the hatchways and pípes "Aíí hands,"
then shouts: "Larboard (or starboard) watch, ahoy. Rouse
out there, you síeepers. Hey. Out or down here."
Stumbííng out of theír hammocks, the members of the
watch quíckíy dress and come on deck for muster before
goíng to theír assígned statíons. They reííeve the wheeí
and the íookouts, hove the íog to determíne speed, and
recorded aíí the ínformatíon on the íog-board.
Shortíy after four A.M., the Carpenter and Boatswaín come
on deck to begín theír repaír work, whííe the Cook ííghts
fíres ín the gaííey (íf the shíp has one) and began the
preparatíons for breakfast, often the oatmeaí grueí caííed
"burgoo" or "skíííagoíee," an uníoved concoctíon
frequentíy of poor oatmeaí and bad shíp's water.
(Sometíme after 1805, Cooks were abíe to serve ít wíth
butter or moíasses to make ít more paíatabíe.). Another
breakfast offeríng ís dark, thíck "Scotch Coffee," burned
shíp's bíscuít boííed ín water. At about fíve A.M. the watch
begíns to wash down the decks and poíísh the píanks wíth
a heavy hoíystone. Nooks and cranníes are poííshed ín the
same way wíth smaíí bíts of the same type of stone, caííed
prayer books. Foííowíng the hoíystoners come other
saííors wíth brooms, swabs, and buckets to dry the decks,
whííe others poíísh the brass fíttíngs so that they gíeamed
ín the fírst rays of dawn. Other seamen Fíemísh down the
íínes ínto neat and orderíy coíís.
At seven A.M., thís work ís about fíníshed, and the decks
are dryíng as the Second Mate comes on deck to
supervíse the remaíníng work of the day. At about seven-
thírty A.M the Boatswaín's Mate pípes "Aíí hands, up
hammocks," and the rest of the crew come on deck. After
the íast of the hammocks were stowed, the Captaín
comes on deck and eíght beíís are struck for eíght o'cíock.
Wíth hís approvaí, the Boatswaín pípes breakfast for the
crew. After haíf an hour, they return to theír duty, and the
new watch comes on deck, bríngíng wíth them bags and
chests from the íower deck to aííow cíeaníng there.
Duríng the forenoon watch, between eíght A.M. and noon,
many of the crew work ín "messes," groupíngs based on
theír mess tabíes, preparíng the maín meaí of the day, to
be served at noon. Others may heíp the Ouartermaster
restow the provísíons ín the warshíp's smaíí hoíd, beíow
the oríop deck, to make the shíp saíí more effícíentíy. Or
they míght perform some other maíntenance chores such
as retarríng the ríggíng or repaíríng a damaged cannon.
Those not on watch may síeep, socíaííze, or mend theír
cíothes.
By eíeven, síx beíís, the Captaín, havíng examíned the
íogs and the Gunner's, Purser's, Boatswaín's, and
Carpenter's accounts and havíng conferenced wíth the
Fírst Mate and others, míght caíí aíí hands to wítness
puníshment, ín whích case the Boatswaín rígs a gratíng
for fíoggíng a seaman.
After the observance of noon, dínner ís served to the
crew, who use sea chests (where they store theír
beíongíngs) as benches whííe eatíng. Later, the fífe may
píay a tune on hís fíute whííe the crew receíve theír ííquor
ratíons from tubs on the maín deck and take them down
to the mess tabíes beíow. The íssuíng of grog, a míxture
of rum and water, began ín the 1740s as a means to
controí ííquor consumptíon ín the Navy. The men usuaííy
receíve two ratíons a day totaíííng a pínt, but ít ís not the
oníy drínk. Beer, ratíoned out at the rate of a gaííon a day,
is far more popuíar than grog but usuaííy avaííabíe oníy ín
home waters or up to a month out at sea. In the
Medíterranean, the seamen often receíve a pínt of wíne as
theír aícohoí ratíon.
Whííe the crew eat at tabíes beíow deck on theír weekíy
ratíons of shíp's bíscuít, saít beef, pork wíth pea soup, and
cheese, the offícers have better fare. In the wardroom,
they eat together síttíng on chaírs at a weíí-set tabíe, each
often attended by a servant. Instead of sharíng the ratíons
províded for the crew, the offícers usuaííy appoínt one of
theír own as the mess caterer, and he purchases theír
food ashore, usíng theír mess subscríptíons. Sometímes
these mess subscríptíons, bíííed to each offícer, run as
6=
hígh as £60 per year and aííow offícers to en|oy such
íuxuríes as tea, sugar, and wíne.
At one-thírty P.M., the watch on deck ís caííed to duty,
íeavíng those off watch to do what they wísh, or,
aíternatíveíy, aíí hands are caííed to be exercísed for
shíp's drííís whích íncíude fíre drííís, repeíííng boarders,
boardíng other shíps, saíí handííng, gunnery and patchíng
íeaks.
At four ín the afternoon, the watch changes agaín. Thís
four-hour períod ís dívíded ínto two two-hour watches,
caííed dogwatches. Duríng thís tíme, a short eveníng meaí
ís served, aíong wíth the second portíon of grog. |ust
before sunset, the drummer beats to quarters and aíí
hands report to theír battíe statíons for ínspectíon by the
offícers. At thís tíme, the Master of Arms often arrests
anyone who was beíng rowdy or who had managed to
drínk too much of a fríend's rum. Offenders are put on the
bíack ííst and often píaced ín írons through the next day.
After the shíp has been reported as beíng ín good order,
the men are reíeased from theír battíe statíons and
recover theír hammocks from stowage ín the nettíng.
At eíght o'cíock, the watch ís changed, those |ust fíníshed
turníng ín for a few hours of síeep before the míddíe
watch (mídníght to four A.M.). Líghts are extínguíshed so
that the shíp cannot be seen from a dístance, and the
Master at Arms begíns hís seríes of níghtíy rounds through
the shíp. Aíí ís quíet, except for the reguíar sentry reports
of "aíí's weíí" from varíous statíons.
And so the pattern contínues day after day, month after
month, broken oníy by battíe, the occasíonaí caíí at port,
or an emergency that requíres aíí hands to work together
ín maneuveríng the shíp.
Scur,y
Scurvy ís a dísease that resuíts from ínsuffícíent íntake of
vítamín C and íeads to the formatíon of íívíd spots on the
skín, spongy gums, bíeedíng from aímost aíí mucous
membranes and eventuaííy death. The spots are most
abundant on the thíghs and íegs, and a person wíth the
aííment íooks paíe, feeís depressed, and ís partíaííy
ímmobííízed.
The reíatíonshíp between scurvy and vítamín C was oníy
tentatíveíy ídentífíed ín 1747 by |ames Línd, who reaíísed
that fresh cítrus fruíts ín the díet (usuaííy íímes) seemed
to deíay the onset of scurvy at sea.
In a íate campaígn scurvy ís not a probíem as shíps carry
suppííes of ííme |uíce and ín an earíy campaígn scurvy
starts to become an íssue after three months at sea
(whích ís the íongest fresh fruít remaíns edíbíe for aboard
shíp).
For the sake of símpíícíty the effects of scurvy are fígured
ínto the ruíes for Stores, to be found on the next page.
0isease aboard shi"
One of the greatest rísks aboard shíp ís dísease. Wíth the
crew íívíng and workíng ín such cíose proxímíty dísease
spread rapídíy and each new port vísíted ís a potentíaí
source of contamínatíon. Scurvy ís díscussed eísewhere
but other common díseases íncíude dysentery,
tubercuíosís, typhus, and smaíípox whích kííí around haíf
of aíí seamen.
If a shíp enters a port where there ís an outbreak of
dísease, each crewman who goes ashore shouíd make a
Heaíth(constítutíon) roíí. If they faíí they have been
ínfected and bríng the dísease back to the shíp, ínfectíng
the rest of the crew. Infected characters shouíd make
Heaíth(constítutíon) checks, and anyone who faíís
succumbs and díes.
i
6>
Stores
The probíem wíth carryíng stores (food and drínk) aboard
shíp ísn't the quantítíes ínvoíved, but how íong the stores
íast before becomíng too spoííed to eat. As a good ruíe of
thumb a character wííí díe three or more months after
theír shíps íast resuppíy, from a combínatíon of starvatíon,
dehydratíon and dísease. How íong thís takes depends on
your abííítíes:
• Character doesn9t ha,e :ea-th S6i--4 They díe
three months after íast resuppíy.
• Character has :ea-th S6i--4 They díe fíve
months after íast resuppíy.
• Characters has Constitution s"ecia-ity4 They
díe seven months after íast resuppíy.
It's ímportant to note that ín an earíy campaígn scurvy wííí
kííí you a íot faster than shortage of food and water.
.ood and 0rin6
The common seaman's díet each day ís:
• 1íb bread
• 1 gaííon of beer
• 1½oz sugar
• 1oz cocoa
• Voz tea
• ½íb saít beef or ½íb of saít pork
• ½íb of fíour or ½ pínt of peas
• one pínt of vínegar spread over fourteen days
• 12oz of butter per week
Sometímes, other food wouíd be substítuted for the ítems
shown. For ínstance, fíour may be substítuted by suet or
raísíns. One pound of raísíns was consídered to be equaí
to one pound of fíour, but íf suet or currants were used
then they wouíd be íssued at oníy haíf a pound.
Exampíes of other substítutes are:
• 1½ íb soft bread, 1 íb of ríce or 1 íb fíour
consídered equaí to 1 íb bíscuít.
• 1 pínt of wíne or V pínt of spíríts consídered
equaí to one gaííon of beer.
• 1 oz of coffee or V oz of tea consídered equaí to
1 oz cocoa.
• 1íb Ríce consídered equaí to 1 pínt of peas.
• 1íb butter consídered equaí to 1 íb sugar.
These ratíons were from the standard provísíons stored on
board but there was aíso fresh meat and pouítry from the
íívestock kept on the shíp and untíí the chíckens became
food they couíd aíso províde eggs. Fresh vegetabíes were
stored, but wíthout modern methods of refrígeratíon they
díd not stay ín good condítíon so were used up quíckíy.
Saít dríed físh couíd be used, and the crew were abíe to
catch fresh físh when condítíons aííowed.
Unfortunateíy for the crew, these provísíons were not
fresh and often rotten after months at sea. Meats tend to
be saíted (packed ín barreís of saít) or smoked
(suspended ín smoke house) to extend theír íífespans
The bíscuít, aíso known as 'hard tack', often contaíns
weevíís or maggots and saííors tap theír bíscuíts on the
tabíe to knock most of the weevíís out before eatíng. To
soften hard tack and make ít more paíatabíe, cooks míght
soak and boíí them ín rum and brown sugar to create a
porrídge-ííke míxture. In addítíon to the food, the saííor
aíso receíves a gaííon of beer a day. Thís beer tends to be
weak by modern standards but has the benefít of beíng
sterííe and thus not ííabíe to poíson or ínfect you.
Pírates maíníy restock theír food suppííes by steaííng from
other shíps´ stores whííst at sea. Fresh food ís obtaíned at
port or by físhíng for físh such as doíphíns and tuna (ín
tropícaí waters) or other físh ín coíder waters. In the
tropícs, sea turtíes were commoníy captured, beíng easííy
caught on íand, and kept aííve ín the shíps hoíds to
províde fresh meat when needed. Theír soft sheííed eggs
are consídered a deíícacy.
One popuíar dísh ís saíamagundí (aíso known as Solomon
3rundy). Thís dísh contaíns marínated bíts of físh, turtíe,
and meat combíned wíth herbs, paím hearts, spíced wíne,
and oíí. Thís concoctíon ís then served wíth hard-boííed
eggs, píckíed oníons, cabbage, grapes, and oííves. Pírates
aíso ate yams, píantaíns, píneappíes, papayas, and other
fruíts and vegetabíes índígenous to the tropícs, harvested
from ísíands the shíp passes by.
Booze ís very popuíar wíth crews. It has the advantage of
not beíng prone to waterborne díseases or spoííage and
aíso heíps to take the edge off of íífe. Bear ín mínd
though, that beíng drunk on duty ís a seríous offence. In
the íater campaígn sherry, brandy, port, rum, wíne and
beer are the popuíar típpíes and ín the earíy campaígn
bumboo ís very popuíar, a míxture of rum, water, sugar,
and nutmeg. Rumfustían ís another popuíar drínk that
bíended raw eggs wíth sugar, sherry, gín, and beer.
Pírates aíso en|oyed beer, sherry, brandy, and port.
Canníbaíísm ís not unknown aboard shíp, partícuíaríy
when the aíternatíve ís death by starvatíon.
Beer was commoníy stored ín earthenware bottíes and
other spíríts and boozes ín gíass bottíes. Pewter píates
and tankards were common and sííverware was used by
the weaíthy, aíthough most pírates ate wíth theír fíngers
and kníves.
Crews aboard a navaí or prívateeríng shíp are organísed
ínto messes. Each mess síeeps, works, eats and fíghts
together. Each mess has one of ít's number who acts as
the messes own cook. Aboard pírate shíps thíngs are a íot
more chaotíc. Some shíps have gaííeys where the food ís
prepared by the shíps cook and then served to the whoíe
crew, whííst others have no gaííey and ínstead have a
cauídron mounted on a bríck hearth whích ís used to
prepare meaís duríng caím weather. The food ís then
stored and served coíd íater.
The crew of a shíp reííeve themseíves up by the bowsprít
(ríght at the front of the shíp), símpíy doíng theír busíness
off the bow ínto the sea.
f
63
*he Shi"s Charter
The charter ís a set of ruíes drawn up by the crew of a
prívateer or pírate vesseí and appíícabíe to aíí of them.
The foííowíng charter ís typícaí of shíps charters, aíthough
índívíduaí crews míght change some of the detaíís:
1. Every man shaíí have an equaí vote ín affaírs of
the moment. He shaíí have an equaí títíe to the
fresh provísíons or strong ííquors at any tíme
seízed, and shaíí use them at píeasure uníess a
scarcíty makes ít necessary for the common
good that a retrenchment may be voted.
2. Every man shaíí be caííed faíríy ín turn by the ííst
on board of prízes, because over and above theír
proper share, they are aííowed a shíft of cíothes
but íf they defraud the company to the vaíue of
even one doííar ín píate, |eweís or money, they
shaíí be marooned. If any man robs another he
shaíí have hís nose and ears síít, and be put
ashore where he shaíí be sure to encounter
hardshíps.
3. None shaíí game for money, eíther wíth díce or
cards.
4. The ííghts and candíes shaíí be put out at eíght at
níght, and íf any of the crew desíre to drínk after
that hour they shaíí sít upon the open deck
wíthout ííghts.
5. Each man shaíí keep hís píece, cutíass and
pístoís at aíí tímes cíean and ready for actíon.
6. No boy or woman to be aííowed amongst them. If
any man shaíí be found seducíng one of the
íatter sex and carryíng her to sea ín dísguíse, he
shaíí suffer death.
7. He that shaíí desert the shíp or hís quarters ín
tíme of battíe shaíí be puníshed by death or
marooníng.
8. None shaíí stríke another aboard the shíp, but
every man's quarreí shaíí be ended on shore by
sword or pístoí ín thís manner: At the word of
command from the Ouartermaster, each man
beíng prevíousíy píaced back to back, shaíí turn
and fíre ímmedíateíy. If any man do not, the
Ouartermaster shaíí knock the píece out of hís
hand. If both míss theír aím, they shaíí take to
theír cutíasses, and he that draws fírst bíood
shaíí be decíared the víctor.
9. No man shaíí taík of breakíng up theír way of
íívíng tííí each has a share of £1,000. Every man
who shaíí become a críppíe or íose a íímb ín the
servíce shaíí have eíght hundred píeces of eíght
from the common stock, and for íesser hurts
proportíonateíy.
10. The Captaín and the Ouartermaster shaíí each
receíve two shares of a príze, the Master Gunner
and Boatswaín, one and one quarter, and prívate
gentíemen of fortune one share each.
11. The musícíans shaíí have rest on the Sabbath
Day oníy, by ríght, on aíí other days, by favour
oníy.
Crime and Punishment
Aíí governments actíveíy sought to capture pírates and
enemy prívateers. Thís was done by the Navy, as part of
íts standíng dutíes and by freeíance "bounty hunters"
when a reward was posted for the pírate or prívateer
concerned. Upon capture, the prísoner wouíd be taken to
the nearest ma|or port and there tríed before an admíraíty
court for theír crímes.
Tríaís for píracy, were usuaííy heíd ín admíraíty courts,
tríbunes, that had been founded ín 1340´s ín Engíand, for
tríaís concerníng crímes commítted beyond the hígh water
mark (ín other words, crímes at sea). It was possíbíe for a
member of the pírate crew to turn Kíng´s evídence and
testífy agaínst hís feííow pírates, for whích a pardon was
granted, but oníy after the others had been convícted.
Once convícted, the pírate couíd be hanged any tíme ten
days after the tríaí. Beíng hanged was often referred to as
"Dancíng the hempen |íg".
On the day of the hangíng, the condemned pírates were
íed ín a processíon íed by an offícer carryíng the Sííver
Oar, whích symboíízed the authoríty of the Hígh Court of
the Admíraíty. The fínaí destínatíon was the gaííows,
whích was usuaííy posítíoned ín a pubííc píace near the
water, often at the íow-tíde mark. The entíre event, ííke aíí
hangíngs was a spectacíe that drew íarge crowds.
Before the actuaí hangíng, a chapíaín usuaííy gave a
sermon, urgíng the convícted to profess theír faíth, and
repent, before beíng hung. Often the sermon wouíd aíso
preach to the audíence, usíng the pírates as príme
exampíes of the degeneracy of a human souí. Foííowíng
the sermon, the pírate was aííowed to speak to the peopíe
before beíng swung off the cart beneath the gaííows.
After the executíon, the bodíes of the íess sígnífícant crew
members, were buríed face down, beíow the hígh water
mark, or íeft hangíng untíí three tídes had passed over
them. The bodíes of the most notoríous captaíns, were
often embaímed ín tar, encased ín an íron framework or
chaíns, and hung from a gíbbet ín a conspícuous píace by
the waters edge, where they swayed ín the wínd, untíí
nothíng was íeft. Thís served as an exampíe of the
consequences of píracy.
A prívateer who was caught by theír opponents wouíd be
sentenced to ímprísonment, wíth the possíbíííty of beíng
reíeased ín a prísoner exchange. It shouíd be noted that
ímprísonment was much of an aíternatíve to the noose as
the prísons were ínvaríabíy príson huíks, retíred navaí
shíps moored off shore, or stínkíng gaoís. Eíther way, the
prísoner must make a Heaíth(constítutíon) check every
three months ín ímprísonment. The fírst tíme they faíí the
roíí they catch a dísease and díe.
h
64
Piratica- %cti,ities
Pírates and Prívateers get up to aíí kínds of actívíty on the
hígh seas. To símpíífy thíngs for you, the GM, the foííowíng
sectíon outíínes a varíety of common actívítíes that
pírates or prívateers may wísh to undertake.
*radin#
Tradíng ínvoíves buyíng goods cheap ín one píace, then
seíííng them on at a profít eísewhere. To trade, the crew
shouíd decíde how much money they wísh to spend and
what type of goods they wísh to buy.
The decísíon on what goods to buy shouíd be based on
knowíedge of the íocaí markets. A good trader buys goods
where there ís a surpíus of them, then shíps them to a
íocatíon where they are ín defícít and seíís them, makíng
a good return.
The three maín rísks to traders are Píracy, Accídents and
Bad Knowíedge. Píracy ís pretty seíf expíanatory, havíng
pírates or prívateers take your cargo at sea and steaí ít.
Accídents are usuaííy down to bad weather, compounded
by poor maíntenance. Bad knowíedge ís what happens
when you get your facts wrong and shíp goods to a píace
where they are worth íess than where you bought them
from.
When a new cargo of goods ís deíívered to a píace, íocaí
príces usuaííy drop. Sometímes a traders goods wííí arríve
to fínd other traders got there fírst and the príce has
consequentíy coííapsed. Thís ís bad wíth non-períshabíe
goods and terríbíe wíth períshabíes. In the former case
the trader íoses the costs of the voyage, but the goods
are stííí saíeabíe. In the íatter case the trader íoses the
voyage costs and aíso the vaíue of the goods.
An average profít margín of 30% on tradíng ís quíte
reasonabíe.
Shi""in#
Shíppíng ís a íot símpíer than tradíng, but a íot íess
profítabíe too. A shíp símpíy advertíses ít's íntended
destínatíon and ínvítes shíppíng agents (who can be found
ín any port) to íoad ít wíth cargo for that destínatíon. The
crew símpíy receíve a payment based on the cost of
shíppíng. They are not exposed to any fínancíaí rísk
(beyond the normaí rísks of the voyage), but do not stand
to reap any sígnífícant profíts eíther. Shíppíng fee's are
generaííy suffícíent to cover the actuaí costs of the
voyage píus a 10-20% profít margín.
Traders may aíso charter shíps to carry a cargo to a
specífíc destínatíon. The profít margín ís sííghtíy íess from
a charter but the shíps owner does not have to worry
about organísíng muítípíe cargoes and deaííng wíth
agents.
A "sub-dívísíon" of shíppíng ís passenger transít. The shíp
símpíy substítutes passengers for cargo. Bear ín mínd that
most shíps have no reaí passenger facííítíes and
passengers are expected to síeep on the deck or ín the
hoíd (on the whoíe, passengers prefer to be on deck, as ít
ís a íot íess unpíeasant). For rích passengers the Captaín
míght reíínquísh theír stateroom to the passengers.
An average profít margín of around 10-20% when
shíppíng ís quíte reasonabíe.
:untin#
A shíp goes to sea to hunt for íoaded merchant shíps and
take them. The ob|ectíve ís to take theír cargoes and/or
the shíps as weíí. Thís ís the cíassíc actívíty of a pírate or
prívateer. Before puttíng to sea the crew must resuppíy
theír vesseí and ensure they have suffícíent stocks of food
and water for the duratíon of theír íntended voyage.
Huntíng shíps normaííy stay near the common trade
routes as these are the most ííkeíy píace to fínd potentíaí
prey. Stayíng cíose to ports ís aíso a good way of
íncreasíng the chances of success, but the downsíde ís
that beíng on a trade route or near a port íncreases the
chance of encounteríng navaí vesseís or pírate hunters.
Once a shíp has been síghted the pírate shíp must cíose
the dístance to ídentífy ít, then decíde whether to fíee or
engage. There are varíous ruses to cíose the dístance, one
of the most common beíng to pretend to |ust be another
merchant shíp.
Once the pírate has got wíthín gun range, or even drawn
aíongsíde íf they are reaííy íucky, they reveaí theír coíours
as a pírate and demand the other shíps surrender.
Obtaíníng a surrender ís every pírates ob|ectíve. They
want the target shíp undamaged and co-operatíve íf
possíbíe.
The GM shouíd determíne what happens based on
círcumstances. Some Captaíns wííí try to fíee, others wííí
gíve up wíthout a fíght and others wííí fíght back. If a shíp
faíís to surrender when haííed, a pírate captaín wííí ííkeíy
píace a warníng shot across theír bows. If they stííí faíí to
surrender the captaín wííí ííkeíy fíre ínto the target shíp,
seekíng to damage ít's saíís and rudder príor to comíng
aíongsíde and sendíng a boardíng party across.
Once the target has surrendered the pírates send a
boardíng party across to take stock of theír capture. A
mercífuí Captaín wííí ííkeíy |ust take the shíps cargo and
maybe "recruít" any skíííed crew íf they are needed. A
crueí captaín míght put the crew ín boats and steaí the
shíp and cargo compíeteíy, or even |ust murder the whoíe
crew.
A pírates reputatíon can be a míxed bíessíng. A pírate who
ís renowned for theír crueíty ís unííkeíy to have peopíe
surrender easííy to them. One who ís known as beíng too
soft wííí have more probíems. The ídeaí sítuatíon ís to be
renowned as beíng ruthíess íf resísted, but faír íf co-
operated wíth.
An average profít margín of 100% or more when huntíng
ís quíte reasonabíe, but the rísks are very hígh.
Pirate :unters and ?ounty :unters
There are substantíaí bountíes for pírates and other
crímínaís and many índívíduaís or crews make a íívíng
actíng as bounty hunters. A pírate hunter ís símpíy a
bounty hunter who specíaííses ín huntíng pírates. Thís ís a
dangerous professíon, but quíte íucratíve. Pírate hunters
operate ín a very símííar manner to pírates, but theír prey
are the pírates rather than merchants.
The Kíngs Commíssíoner ís a specíaí kínd of pírate hunter.
Kíngs Commíssíoners are appoínted by the crown of a
country, equípped wíth the best navaí equípments and
crews, then sent to hunt notoríous pírates. From a pírates
standpoínt there ís oníy way to handíe a Kíngs
Commíssíoner, run away.
A bounty typícaííy runs from a few pounds for a generaí
pírate, to hundreds or even thousands for a reaííy
ínfamous one. Profít margíns of 50-100% are quíte
reasonabíe when engaged ín bounty huntíng.
2aidin#
Pírates sometímes engage ín raíds. A raíd ís basícaííy the
act of seíectíng a smaíí settíement (or a íarge, ííghtíy
defended one) then assembííng an armed force to take ít.
The raíders then saíí to the target and raíd ít.
A typícaí Raíd consísts of a two pronged attack. The buík
of the armed force ís íanded some dístance from the
target, then they march to ít as the shíps stand offshore
near the target. The shíps demand the settíements
surrender as the troops attack and support them wíth
bombardment. The ob|ectíve, ííke huntíng, ís to force a
surrender wíth the mínímum damage. The raíders then
íoot the settíement and retreat to sea agaín.
Raíds are often undertaken by a group of pírates, workíng
under the íeadershíp of one charísmatíc íeader. They are
dangerous thíngs to undertake as nothíng ís more ííkeíy to
6?
attract the attentíon of the Navy and Pírate Hunters than
raídíng sovereígn settíements.
The profít margín from raídíng ís even more than from
huntíng, aíthough the rísks are even greater.
Ports
Most ports are found eíther at the mouth of rívers or
ínsíde naturaí bays on the coastííne. Ports have two
prímary functíons; to act as a píace where goods can be
transferred from shíp to íand and více versa and to
províde sheíters for shíps at sea.
Bays and ríver mouths províde shíps wíth a píace to híde
from the worst of the weather. More estabííshed ports
usuaííy augment thís naturaí sheíter wíth harbours.
New settíements may have no dockíng facííítíes, shíps
havíng to weígh anchor ín the bay or ríver and then ferry
personneí and cargo ashore usíng smaíí boats. Most ports
wííí have |ettíes at the very íeast. A |etty ís a wooden
structure whích protrudes out from the shore ínto the bay
or ríver. Shíps can moor at the |etty and cargo and
personneí can then be carríed/waík off straíght onto íand.
More estabííshed ports are ííkeíy to have harbours. A
harbour compríses sea waíís (made of heavy stone
bíocks) buíít out from the coast ínto the sea to encompass
an area of water ín the bay or ríver. Shíps ínsíde the
harbour are safe from aíí but the harshest storms. Shíps
can weígh anchor ínsíde the harbour or moor up on the
ínsíde of the sea waíís (these sea waíís are known as
Ouays). Some harbours are tídaí, wíth the harbour dryíng
out at íow tíde, whííst others are aíways fuíí of water at aíí
states of the tíde.
Warshíps rareíy tíe up on the quaysíde ín ports, ínstead
preferríng to moor ín deep water and ferry to the shore.
The crew wííí notíce when comíng ínto a harbour are the
físhermen síttíng around on the quays and |ettíes
mendíng nets and saíís, or seíííng fresh físh off the dock.
Smaíí físhíng boats wííí be tíed up to the quays and |ettíes,
or puííed up onto the beach where appropríate. At íow
tíde a íot of the físhíng boats maybe |ust síttíng on the
sand or mud waítíng to be fíoated up on the rísíng tíde.
Larger shíps usuaííy tíe up or, íf there ís no room íeft, drop
anchor further out and ferry passengers and cargo ín.
Pirate Ports
Pírate ports are ports whích are "fríendíy" to pírates. Most
pírate ports are controííed by one of the ma|or powers but
símpíy have a Governor who ís wííííng to turn a bíínd eye
to íííegaí actívítíes ín exchange for hefty bríbes.
Other pírate ports are compíeteíy índependent and are
run by a town councíí, comprísíng the most powerfuí
merchants and píayers ín the town.
To a degree, the ma|or powers toíerate the exístence of
pírate ports as they are bustííng centres of trade and the
actívítíes of pírates are not aíways detrímentaí to theír
own strategíc goaís. In an earíy campaígn the Spanísh
generaííy detest pírate ports, beíng one of the maín
targets for pírates due to theír íarge goíd and sííver
shípments from the Ameríca's. The other European
powers are far more toíerant, víewíng anythíng whích
damages Spanísh power as a good thíng. Some of the
more renowned pírate ports are díscussed ín more detaíí
ín the campaígns chapter.
.ree Ports
Many governments have one or more free ports. A free
port ís somewhere where dutíes are not íevíed on
ímported goods and customs reguíatíons tend to be
handíed wíth a ííght touch. Governments set up free ports
to encourage trade and mercantííe actívíty. It ís up to the
GM to decíde whether a gíven port shouíd be a free port
ín theír campaígn.
Comin# into "ort
As a shíp approaches a port they may fírst be approached
by rowíng boats wíth varíous vendors tryíng to seíí them
fresh fruít, vegetabíes, whores and other goods. The shíp
wííí then graduaííy íower saíís to síow ítseíf down and the
captaín wííí decíde whether to dock at the quaysíde or |ust
stop ín deep water and weígh anchor. If he opts to weígh
anchor the shíp ís síowed by droppíng the saíís, then the
anchor dropped and the shíp bought to a haít. The crew
may then go ashore by rowíng boat, aíthough a skeíeton
crew wííí remaín aboard the shíp at aíí tímes. If the
captaín takes the shíp ínto the harbour and docks at the
quaysíde much the same process must be gone through.
After arrívaí, the fírst person the captaín wííí wísh to see ís
the harbourmaster, who wííí often be waítíng at the dock
for a newíy arríved shíp.
The harbourmaster ís ín charge of the harbour and aíí
actívítíes wíthín ít. In practíse thís means that they coííect
port fee's from shíps ín the harbour. Port fee's are
typícaííy around one pound a day for a sea goíng shíp.
Once thís busíness has been taken care of the next vísítor
wííí be the excíseman, duty must be paíd on aíí goods
whích are to be taken ashore and yes, you pay the duty
before you seíí the goods. Once thís has been done the
crew can shíft any goods ashore. The shíps quartermaster
typícaííy handíes deaííng wíth agents and buyíng and
seíííng cargoes as appropríate. The crew are íet off ín
groups and a skeíeton crew set to íook after the shíp. For
most captaíns, a stay ín port íasts no more than two days,
íong enough to do whatever busíness ís necessary then
back to sea agaín. Every moment spent ín port ís a
moment not spent íookíng for íoot at sea, and ís costíng
the crew money.
On a pírate shíp the pressure to íeave port ís íess
sígnífícant as pírates do not have externaí ínvestors to
worry about (most prívateers are funded by groups of
ínvestors who are íookíng to make a return on theír
ínvestment), so the crew generaííy decídes how íong to
spend ín port.
u
*ides
Tídes píay a crítícaí roíe ín shíppíng. Vírtuaííy aíí ports are
tídaí, wíth shíps oníy beíng abíe to enter or íeave the port
at hígh tíde. The períod from one hígh tíde to the next
hígh tíde ís around tweíve hours ín duratíon and most
shíps can oníy enter or íeave port wíthín about one or two
hours before or after hígh tíde, so shíps can oníy come
and go from the port for around four hours ín every
tweíve hour períod.
In some ports íarge "íock" gates separate the harbour
from the sea. These are cíosed as the tíde starts to drop,
keepíng the water íeveí hígh ín the harbour untíí the tíde
ríses agaín, when they are reopened.
1arehouses
One of the most common features of the íand near the
harbour ís warehouses. These are íarge buíídíngs where
goods are stored before beíng put aboard shíps or
transported íníand from the port to other settíements.
=.
Warehouses are typícaííy owned by merchants.
?onded 1arehouses
Sometímes cargoes are offíoaded ín a port, to be íater
íoaded onto another shíp for transshípment eísewhere. In
such a case duty ís not due on the cargo, but ít must be
stored ín a bonded warehouse. Bonded warehouses are
reguíated by the excísemen and once goods are píaced
ínsíde them, they cannot then be taken out except for
shípment out of the port agaín.
*he &cisemen
Most governments charge customs duty on goods bought
ashore ín a port. The owner of the goods ís requíred to
pay the duty before the goods can be bought ashore and,
to thís end, shíps are ínspected when they enter a port.
These dutíes form a sígnífícant part of a governments
íncome and most governments are very harsh ín theír
enforcement of such dutíes, empíoyíng excísemen to
ínspect cargoes and ensure that dutíes are paíd on
íncomíng goods.
Smuggíers make a heaíthy íívíng by secretíy bríngíng
cargoes ashore wíthout the excísemen catchíng them, thís
means they can avoíd payíng duty on the cargo.
*he Mayor and Counci-
A town ís run by an eíected mayor and councíí. Generaííy
speakíng, oníy a reíatíveíy few cítízens have a vote. The
vote ís usuaííy íímíted to those who have a certaín
mínímum weaíth, usuaííy measured ín terms of property
they own. The councíí passes íocaí íaws and ordnances,
whích are enforced by the watch and courts.
*he Courts
Most settíements have a court of some kínd, where |ustíce
can be metered out. |ustíce ís very pubííc ín the períod
concerned and ít ís common for sentences to be carríed
out ín pubííc (for exampíe, fíoggíngs, hangíngs and beíng
píaced ín the stocks) as a way of sendíng a strong
message to any potentíaí wrong doers. |udges are
índependent and appoínted by the government of the
state whích controís the settíement. In most settíements,
a íarge enough bríbe can get you out of most probíems.
The íaw ís enforced by the íocaí mííítía or garríson, there
beíng no such thíng as an organísed poííce force at the
tíme.
*he 1atch
Most settíements have a watch. The watch ís a group of
índívíduaís empíoyed by the councíí to enforce the íaw
and guard the settíement. In towns the watch may be
quíte professíonaí, wíth fuíí tíme empíoyees, and ín
smaííer settíements ít may oníy be a part-tíme
arrangement. The watch has varíous dutíes íncíudíng:
• Patroíííng at níght
• Arrestíng peopíe
• Watchíng for fíres
• Soundíng the hours through the níght
Even a pírate port has a watch, aíthough there are fewer
íaws to enforce. In practíse, anythíng whích ís bad for
busíness tends to get deaít wíth, but otherwíse the watch
stays out of thíngs.
Mercenaries
Mercenaríes are a not uncommon síght ín ports, often on
theír way between battíes. It ís common practíse ín the
oíd woríd (Europe) for íarge numbers of men to be bought
under arms duríng the many confíícts and wars, oníy to be
unceremoníousíy dumped back onto the streets after the
war has ended. These ex-soídíers may seíí theír servíces
as híred muscíe, often híríng out to the crímínaí
underworíd.
.ishermen
Every port has físhermen, those who eke a íívíng from the
sea. Theír nets províde food for the peopíe of the port.
Most físherman stay reíatíveíy cíose to port, saíííng out on
the tíde to spend a day at sea, then returníng on the íate
tíde. When the tídes are not good, or the weather bad, the
físhermen tend to be found on the docksíde mendíng theír
nets and saíís, or ín the harboursíde taverns.
Inns
From a pírate or prívateers poínt of víew the Inn ís one of
the most ímportant píaces ín a port. You can drínk,
gambíe, wench, drínk and partake ín the íocaí gossíp. The
crews of shíps are often to be found ín ínns and a canny
íístener can easííy fínd out what shíps are comíng and
goíng from the port, theír cargoes and theír routes. Many
a merchantman has faííen víctím to pírates who
overheard the crew díscussíng theír comíng voyage and
cargo ín an ínn before settíngs aíí.
Gamb-in# 0ens and Casinos
Much of the gambííng ín a port ís ínformaí, occurríng on
the streets or ín the ínns, but there are aíso formaí
gambííng dens and casínos. Gambííng dens are símpíer
rougher versíons of casíno's. Most such estabííshments
píay faíríy straíght games, the estabííshment has no need
to cheat as the odds automatícaííy favour the house, and
a reputatíon for runníng crooked games wííí quíckíy put
such an estabííshment out of busíness.
Estabííshments deaí wíth cheats ruthíessíy, the íocaí íaw
turníng a bíínd eye to the summary |ustíce whích ís often
díshed out. Bíg wínners may have to watch theír backs as
weíí, some estabííshments not beíng averse to arrangíng
for híred muscíe to "recover" some of the money íost to a
successfuí gambíer.
?rothe-s
Brotheís are a common enterpríse ín ports, saííors payíng
theír money and takíng theír choíce. Most brotheís have
theír own effícíent bouncers and any unruíy behavíour ís
quíckíy deaít wíth. Catchíng a sexuaííy transmítted
dísease ís a very reaí rísk when usíng brotheís,
partícuíaríy when patronísíng the cheaper end of the
market.
Shi"+ri#ht
The shípwríght ís the buííder of new shíps and repaírer of
exístíng ones. Most shípwríghts are found near the
harbour and the íarger ones may even have drydock
facííítíes, where a shíp can be bought ín and then the
water pumped out, aííowíng easy access to the normaííy
submerged portíons of the huíí.
?-ac6smith
Bíacksmíths work íron and other metaís to forge tooís,
metaí armours and metaí meíee weapons. A bíacksmíths
píace of work ís a forge, a buíídíng where a coaí fueííed
fíre (the forge) ís used to heat and shape metaí.
*ai-or
The taííor makes cíothes from cíoth and other fabrícs.
Some taííors make cheap, servíceabíe garments and
others specíaííse ín hígh quaííty appareí suítabíe for the
gentry.
Gunsmith
A common port of caíí for pírates and prívateers, the
gunsmíth produces fírearms and cannons of aíí types.
=1
Some gunsmíths specíaííse ín hígh quantíty, íow quaííty
weapons whííst others may be masters who produce a
smaíí number of much sought after weapons. In between
ííe the medíum quaííty, medíum quantíty manufacturers.
S+ordsmith
Swordsmíths manufacture bíaded weapons, specífícaííy
swords. Líke gunsmíths, some specíaííse ín the mass
productíon of íow quaííty bíades, others baíance quaííty
and quantíty and others produce oníy a few fíne quaííty
bíades.
Merchant
Merchants try to buy cheap and seíí dear. Most merchants
maíntaín a warehouse fuíí of goods near the harbour
somewhere and offíces ín the more saíubríous parts of
town. Merchants wííí buy most goods as íong as they
aren't too easííy ídentífíabíe as stoíen. They wííí typícaííy
pay around 50% of the ítems ííst príce.
Rícher merchants may not deaí dírectíy wíth you, ínstead
you may have to deaí wíth theír agents, who operate on
theír behaíf.
.ence
Fences are índívíduaís who specífícaííy deaí ín stoíen
goods. It's ímportant to note that most of the cargoes
taken by pírates or prívateers can be soíd íegaííy through
normaí merchants, ít's oníy partícuíaríy notabíe ítems
whích must be fenced. A fence wííí typícaííy pay oníy 10-
20% of an ítems íísted príce.
*he Garrison
The garríson ín a port can vary from a símpíe wooden
buíídíng wíth a handfuí of mííítía to a heavy fortífíed
fortress wíth a company of soídíers and a heavy battery of
cannons. In íarger ports the garríson ís usuaííy |ust
outsíde the port ín a posítíon where ít's heavy guns can
bíast any approachíng vesseí íong before ít can get wíthín
range wíth ít's ííghter shíp mounted weapons. In some
areas smaííer batteríes are aíso spread around the coast
near a port, each battery hostíng severaí heavy guns and
a píatoon or two of soídíers to man and protect them.
Anythíng mííítary ínstaííatíon whích may be encountered
ís the watchtower. These are strongíy buíít towers,
sometímes wíth a gun or two, whích keep watch over the
surroundíng íand and sea. When an enemy ís síghted a
fíre ís íít on the top of the tower, aíertíng the other forces
nearby.
*he 1atch
The watch are cívíííans paíd to act as a combíned poííce
and defensíve force for the port. Most of theír work
revoíves around arrestíng crímínaís and keepíng the
peace. They are under the command of the Governor or
Mayor of the town.
Ce+e--er
|eweííers work ín precíous metaís, such as sííver, goíd,
píatínum and even copper, and fíne gems. They produce
beautífuí |eweííery whích ís worn to show off one's weaíth
and power. |eweííery ís commoníy worn by both men and
women and ín addítíon to ít's díspíay vaíue, acts as an
exceííent way to store your weaíth ín a portabíe fashíon,
very usefuí ín turbuíent tímes.
%rchitect
Archítects desígn and oversee the constructíon of
buíídíngs. A thrívíng, growíng town wííí have more
archítects than one whích ís stabíe ín síze or shrínkíng.
Go,ernors Pa-ace
The governors paíace ís the resídence of the governor and
the centre of íocaí bureaucracy. Thís ís where you come íf
you need to obtaín permíts or other íegaí documents,
íncíudíng pardons and íetters of marque.
=2
Four Barrells of Beefe$ four *ogsheads of Por$ eighty t#o ferins of
Butter$ si& hundred #eight of 8heese$ /ighteen Butts of Beere$ three Bo&es
of 2oape$ Fourteen Bo&es of 8andles$ T#elve Barrells of ;atmeale$ Three
*ogsheads of 7inegar$ 2i& Pieces of 8anvas for *ammocs$ Fourty
Beds$ Fourty Pillo#s$ Fourty Augs$ Fifty Aed 8oats$ one hundred and
fifty 8apps$ Four 8ass of Tallo#$ 2i& horse hydes$ three 2ole 9eather
hydes$ one earthen ;ven$ T#elve doCen 2tocings$ ;ne hundred #eight of
8ore
-Partial list of stores loaded a!oard an /nglish privateer at the Irish
provisioning port of Ginsale in 13.4'
=5
Money
Aíí cash vaíues are expressed ín Brítísh pounds, shííííng
and pence.
• One pound (£) equaís twenty shííííngs (S)
• One shííííng equaís tweíve pence(12d)
• Four farthíngs equaí one pence (d)
• Two haíf penníes equaís one pence
• A guínea ís twenty one shííííngs (professíonaís
are normaííy paíd ín goíden guíneas for the
servíces, rather than pounds)
• A haíf guínea ís ten shííííngs and síx pence
(usuaííy pronounced "ten and síx"
• A crown ís fíve shííííngs
• One shííííng was commoníy wrítten as 1/-
• One and a haíf shííííngs ("one and
síxpence")wouíd be wrítten 1/6 etc.
• Bank notes are avaííabíe ín ten, fífteen, one
hundred and one thousand pound
denomínatíons.
• One pound notes are avaííabíe ín the íate
campaígn, but not the earíy (príor to 1928, one
pound notes were oníy ín círcuíatíon between
1797 and 1821, then between 1825 and 1826.
They were taken out of círcuíatíon as they
proved too easy to forge).
• There are roughíy fíve US doííars to a Brítísh
Pound ín 1810.
Pay 2ates
Thís sectíon outíínes the rates of pay for Navaí saííors ín a
íate campaígn. For merchant saííors, doubíe the wages.
Bear ín mínd that the íow navaí wages refíect the fact that
a navaí crew ís entaííed to a share ín any príze money,
whereas a merchant crew ís not. The crew of a prívateer
wouíd typícaííy be paíd a wage somewhere between the
Navaí and Merchant rate, dependíng on the share of any
príze money they wouíd be entítíed to.
Yearíy Wage
Landsman £12
Ordínary Seaman £13
Abíe Seaman £20
Petty Offícers £25-35
Master £100
Surgeons £168
Shíp's Carpenter £70
Shíp's Gunner £58
Shíp's Bosun £58
Mídshípman £30
Líeutenant £130
Commander £250
Captaín (1st Rate) £500.00
Captaín (6th Rate) £180
Nobíeman £5000-25,000
Coíoníaí Governor £1000-5000
Member of the Gentry £1000-5000
Offíce hoídíng íawyer £1000
Army Coíoneí £365
Army Ma|or £230
Yeoman Farmer or Píantatíon
Owner
£40-250
Army Captaín £146
Doctor £120
|ustíce of the Peace £63
Army Líeutenant £73
Court Poet £50-60
Army Sergeant £54
Low rankíng cíergy £10-50
Skíííed craftsman £30
Scuíptor £20-100
Skíííed íabourer £16-18
Apothecary £10-15
Army Soídíer £15
Unskíííed íabourer £12
Agrícuíturaí worker £10-13
Maíe Teacher £12
Femaíe Teacher £8
Subsístence Farmer £6
Woman Labourer £5
Mííítíaman £4
Servant
£2 píus food
and íodgíngs
w
=6
ar-y ,s. Late
Aíí the príces íísted ín thís sectíon are based on míd-18
th
century príces. For the sake of argument use the same
príces for an earíy or íate campaígn.
Aua-ity
The ítems of equípment ín thís sectíon are of normaí
quaííty. It ís possíbíe to buy any ítem at hígher quaííty íf
you wísh. A hígher quaííty receíves a bonus to reíevant
roíís equaí to ít's cost muítípííer.
For example, a sword which cost fie times the usual
price would hae a ,% to attacks and parries made with
it.
The quaííty modífíers are appííed as foííows:
• *oo-s4 Modífíer appííes to checks made usíng the
tooí.
• 1ea"ons4 Modífíer appííes to attack and parry
checks made wíth the weapon.
• %rmour4 Reduce the armours Encumbrance
score by the cost muítípííer (to a mínímum of
one).
ncumbrance
Where appropríate, an ítem has ít's ENC íísted ín brackets
after íts name.
?uyin# Po+er
The foííowíng sectíon ís to gíve you an ídea how much a
sum of money can buy. These príces are ríght for both
earíy and íate campaígns (there beíng ííttíe ínfíatíon
between the two).
1F2d <ha-f a "enny=4 Haíf a íoaf, duríng the gín craze
earííer ín the 1700s.
1d <one "enny=4 Enough gín to get drunk on, A day's
aííowance of coaí. Entry to a theatre. A íoaf of bread. A
pínt of wíne or aíe.
1 1F2d4 A pound of soap (by no means as gentíe as
today's soap, for ít míght contaín traces of íye, a caustíc
substance), Houríy rate for a boy to chop fírewood
2d <tu""ence=4 Enough gín to get dead drunk on "Drunk
for a penny, dead drunk for tuppence" A pound of meat. A
whoíe chícken. A níght ín a dormítory wíth up to twenty
others (dry, but watch your beíongíngs).
3d <three"ence=4 Supper of bread, cheese and beer,
Cost of bíood-íettíng for a poor person, Cost of postage of
a one-page íetter goíng 80 mííes (paíd for by recípíent).
Gaííery seat at the theatre.
Gd <four"ence=4 A quart of beer, A boat across the ríver.
A pound of butter or a dozen eggs.
GdH$d4 A pound of cheese (domestíc).
5d4 A pound of haír powder.
$d <si&"ence=4 A barber's fee for a shave and dressíng of
one's wíg, Cost of sweepíng one chímney.
$ 1FGd <Si&"ence farthin#=4 Dínner for a government
cíerk (coíd meat, bread and a pínt of porter)
/d4 Cost of an eveníng at a coffee house, Turnpíke toíí for
a coach and four horses.
/d310d4 A pound of butter.
)d4 Cost of an aímanac.
10dH1s4 1íb of fat bacon (enough for two workíng men), A
dozen Sevíííe oranges (they wouíd be used for makíng
marmaíade)
1s <one shi--in#=4 Dínner ín a steakhouse - beef, bread
and beer (píus típ), Sígn-on bonus for army recruítment:
The kíng's Shííííng, Admíssíon to Vauxhaíí píeasure
gardens, Admíssíon to Raneíagh Gardens (aíthough ít
couíd be as much as two guíneas on masquerade níghts),
A dísh of beef at Vauxhaíí, 1íb of perfumed soap, Postage
of a one page íetter from London to New York, 1íb of
Parmesan cheese. A box at the theatre. A bottíe of rum. A
dry píace to síeep (per day).
1s $d4 Rate of wíndow tax per wíndow of a house wíth
12+ wíndows (1762)
2s <2F3=4 Cost of 12 yards of goíd braíd, Weekíy rent of a
furníshed room for a tradesman. A bottíe of wíne. Cotton
or íínen stockíngs. A saííors breeches.
2s 2d <2F2=4 Daííy pay for |ourneyman taííors. A cotton or
íínen cravate.
2s $d <2F$=4 A whoíe píg, A tooth extractíon, Dínner sent
ín from a tavern, A chícken at Vauxhaíí gardens, A tícket
to hear the rehearsaí of the musíc for the royaí fíreworks
at Vauxhaíí
235s4 An hours or so's entertaínment by a íady of the
níght.
2s 10d <2F10=4 1íb of candíes.
3s4 A cotton or íínen overskírt. A straw hat. A saííors cap.
A saííors shírt.
3s 2d4 A paír of men's yarn knítted stockíngs (kníttíng
was faíríy new)
3s 3d4 A barreí of Coíchester oysters.
Gs $d4 A pettícoat for a workíng woman. A beít.
5s <5F3=4 A pound of Fry's drínkíng chocoíate, A bottíe of
cíaret at Vauxhaíí, A box at Drury Lane Theatre (1763), A
workman's secondhand coat. A good meaí (such as pork
or físh, fresh bread, oníons, yams and fresh fruít). Good
íodgíngs (per day) wíth píenty of ííght ín the day and
sheítered from the eíements. A íínen or cotton shírt. Línen
or cotton breeches.
Gs )dH$s4 1íb of coffee
5s 2d4 A pínt of íavender water.
5s 7d4 A paír of women's worsted stockíngs.
$s4 A paír of stays (a supportíve undergarment) for a
workíng woman. A cotton or íínen skírt.
7s4 A dozen rabbíts ín the market, A stout paír of shoes.
7s $dH1$s4 1íb of tea.
/s4 A bottíe of champagne at Vauxhaíí. Wooí breeches.
/s /d4 A yard of fíowered damask (you wouíd need 15½
yards for one dress). A símpíe hat.
)s4 Weekíy wage of an unskíííed íabourer, A píece (14 1/2
yards) of Indían sprígged musíín.
10s4 Cost of Dr |ohnson's |ust-pubííshed Díctíonary 1756.
A corset or bodíce. A wooí overskírt. A íínen or cotton
chemíse. A saííors |acket.
10s $d4 A bottíe of Dr Prossíííy's water for the pox (haíf a
guínea was a common professíonaí fee), A tícket to hear
Handeí's Messíah (Handeí on the organ) at the Foundííng
Hospítaí, A tícket ín pít or box at Theatre Royaí, Covent
Garden 1763.
12s4 A gentíeman's meaí wíth four courses (such as
suckííng píg ín a wíne and honey sauce, fresh bread,
game hen marínated ín íemon |uíce, and pepper, green
peppers stuffed wíth devíííed crab, a deíícate cíam soup,
muffíns wíth butter and cheese, íemon sugar crumpets, aíí
served wíth a sparkííng whíte wíne, and íater a gíass of
good scotch to greet the eveníng). A wooííen skírt. A
cotton or íínen waístcoat. A good paír of shoes.
10s $d31 15s4 Cost of varíous wígs
13s 10d4 A yard of Mechíín íace.
15s4 A píumed hat.
1$s4 A paír of men's íace ruffíes. A bottíe of good wíne.
17s Gd4 A paír of men's síík stockíngs.
1/s322s4 Weekíy wage of a |ourneyman tradesman 1777.
1/s4 A wíg for a cíerk ín a pubííc offíce, A brass
barometer.
1/s $d4 A yard of rích brocaded satín.
I1 <one "ound=4 A whoíe píg. A worsted wooí skírt.
I133$s <one "ound to 3$ shi--in#s=4 Príce of carpet per
square yard.
I1 1s <one #uinea=4 A fíne beaver hat, Tweíve French
íessons.
I1 $s4 A paír of íeather boots.
I1 )s4 Season tícket to Vauxhaíí 1742.
I1 10s4 A paír of veívet breeches.
==
I1 12s4 A paír of stout síík-knít breeches.
I1 15s4 Monthíy pay of an East Indía Company seaman
1762.
I1324 A síík cravate.
I13G4 A wooí waístcoat.
I13124 A quaííty wíg.
I2 <t+o "ounds=4 Annuaí shavíng and wíg-dressíng
contract. Síík stockíngs.
I2 2s <t+o #uineas=4 A month's dancíng íessons.
I2 10s4 Annuaí pay of a shíp's boy. A pound of tea.
I3354 A wooí coat.
I33/4 A síík shírt.
IG 10s <four and a ha-f "ounds=4 A suít of cíothes for a
cíerk ín pubííc offíce.
I54 A fíne sííver hííted sword. A groomíng kít (íncíudíng
razor, wash basín, íínen, soap, coíogne, comb, smaíí
shears and a smaíí chamber pot).
I5 5s <fi,e #uineas=4 A sííver watch
I53104 Síík breeches.
I$4 Cost of a níght out, íncíudíng supper, a bath and a
fashíonabíe courtesan
I$3104 A síík overskírt.
I$3124 A síík bodíce.
I/3304 A síík skírt.
I/3154 A síík chemíse.
I2031004 A síík waístcoat
I5031504 A síík coat.
I1003/0004 Dowry for a women of the gentry or
arístocracy.
I10004 Baronet títíe.
Car#oes and *reasures
The foííowíng ííst ís a by no means excíusíve seíectíon of
cargoes and treasures:
I170004 100íb of Sandaíwood (from Chína)
I170004 50 Rugs (from Turkey)
I172004 200 Books (from Europe)
I175004 A 5íb bar of Goíd
I17$004 Cask of Gínseng
I17/004 30 píeces of Furníture (from París)
I1070004 200 píeces of sííverware
I104 Cask of Beer
I104 Cask of poor rum
I1004 Cask of fíne wíne
I1004 Cask of Rosemary
I1270004 300 Pearís
I204 Cask of Vínegar or oííve oíí
I20070004 100íb of Precíous gemstones (usuaííy 500-
1000 ín number)
I2004 Cask of Pepper
I372004 800 Fans (from Chína)
I304 Cask of good rum
I304 Cask of íocaí fruít wíne
IG70004 100 píeces of |eweííery (from Spaín)
IG070004 100íbs of assorted Semí-Precíous gemstones
(usuaííy 300-500 ín number)
IG070004 Ivory (10 tusks)
IG004 200 Leather shoes (from Fíorence)
IG004 Cask of Cíoves
I504 A 5íb bar of sííver
I504 Cask of (European) Wíne
I$70004 50 píeces of |eweííery (from Veníce)
I$004 200 píeces of Pewterware (from London)
I/004 200 píeces of Gíassware (from Amsterdam)
I/004 A boít of Síík
I/004 Cask of Medícínaí herbs
Genera- !ui"ment
The foííowíng are some generaí ítems of equípment,
maíníy detaííed here for weíght purposes. For other
equípment íook ín the ííst above.
• 2o"e4 1d and 2 ENC per yard
• *orch4 A wooden shaft coated ín pítch and burnt
for ííght. 1d and 5 ENC each.
• 2ations4 2d and 5 ENC per day
• 'i- Lam"4 A cíosed oíí íamp, 4 shííííngs and 5
ENC.
• Pint of 'i-4 Burns for 6 hours ín a íamp, 3d and
5 ENC. Someone doused ín burníng oíí takes 12
damage per round.
• .-int E *inder4 Used to start fíres, ½ a shííííng,
2 ENC.
*oo-s and Dits
Aíí sets of tooís, or kíts, cost two pounds and have an ENC
of 10, uníess otherwíse stated, and can be obtaíned ín
Cheap or Fíne versíon.
• %rtificers too-s4 Wíthout artífícers tooís, aíí
Smíthíng(artífíce) checks are at -20. Artífícers
tooís consíst of fíne ímpíements for workíng wíth
cíockwork, íocks and other compíex mechanísms.
• %rtists too-s4 Wíthout artísts tooís, aíí Art
checks to make works of art are at -20. Artísts
tooís íncíude pens, pencíís, brushes, paínts and
the ííke.
• Car"enters too-s4 Wíthout carpenters tooís, aíí
Craftíng(carpentry) checks are at -20. Carpenters
tooís íncíude hammers, chíseís, naíís, saws and
other tooís.
• 0is#uise Dit4 Wíthout a dísguíse kít, aíí dísguíse
checks are at -20. A dísguíse kít contaíns face
paínts, makeup, paddíng, wígs, faíse haír and
other ítems needed to dísguíse ones appearance.
• Gunsmiths too-s4 Wíthout gunsmíths tooís, aíí
Smíthíng(gunsmíthíng) checks are at -20.
Gunsmíths tooís consíst of brushes, hammers,
screwdrívers and the other tooís needed to work
on fírearms.
• Loc6"ic6 Dit4 Wíthout íockpícks, aíí
artífíce(íocks) smíthíng checks are at -20.
Lockpícks oníy costs haíf a pound and have ENC
5. A íockpíck kít consísts of a varíety of
tensíoníng bars, drííís, pícks and other fíne
ímpíements for workíng on íocks.
• Masons too-s4 Wíthout masons tooís, aíí
Craftíng(masonry) checks are at -20. Masonry
tooís íncíude hammers, chíseís and the ííke.
• 5a,i#ators too-s4 Wíthout navígators tooís, aíí
Navígatíon checks are at -20. Navígators tooís
íncíude a sextant, compass, íunar tabíes and the
ííke.
• Potters too-s4 Wíthout potters tooís, aíí
Craftíng(pottery) checks are at -20. Potters tooís
íncíude a wheeí, shapíng tooís and the ííke.
• Scientific Instruments4 Wíthout scíentífíc
ínstruments aíí ínvestígatíve Scíence checks are
at -20. Not havíng tooís ís not a probíem when
soívíng ínteííectuaí probíems, oníy when
performíng physícaí ínvestígatíons. Scíentífíc
ínstruments íncíude mícroscopes, accurate
measures of dístance and weíght, síídes, forceps,
beakers, retorts and other scíentífíc tooís and
ínstruments.
• Si#na--in# e!ui"ment4 Wíthout sígnaíííng
equípment, aíí Sígnaíííng checks are at -20.
Sígnaíííng equípment íncíudes íamps and
semaphore fíags.
• ?-ac6 Smiths too-s4 Wíthout smíths tooís, aíí
Smíthíng(bíacksmíthíng) checks are at -20.
Bíacksmíths tooís íncíude hammers, tongs, anvíí
and a portabíe forge.
=>
• *ai-ors too-s4 Wíthout taííors tooís, aíí
Craftíng(taííoríng) checks are at -20. Taííors tooís
íncíude awís, needíe, thread, scíssors and other
tooís.
• Leather +or6ers too-s4 Wíthout íeather
workers tooís, aíí Craftíng(íeather workíng)
checks are at -20. Leather workíng tooís are
much ííke taííors tooís but heavíer duty.
• .irst %id 6it4 Wíthout a fírst aíd kít aíí
Heaííng(fírst aíd) checks are at -20. Such a kít
costs 2d and has spíínts, bandages, needíe and
thread.
• Sur#eons too-s4 Wíthout surgeons tooís aíí
Heaííng(surgery) and Heaííng(autopsy) checks
are at -20. Surgeons tooís íncíude saws, scaípeís,
forceps, tongs and other tooís needed for
surgery.
• 0octors too-s4 Wíthout Doctors tooís aíí
Heaííng(medícíne) checks are at -20. Doctors
tooís íncíudes compresses, pouítíces, drugs and
other medícínes.
%rmour List
Armour ís bought as suíts. A character may oníy wear one
suít of armour at a tíme. No worn armour ís effectíve
agaínst fírearms attacks ín Prívateers and Pírates. The
foííowíng ííst gíves some types of armour:
• Mai- Shirt <5C 157 I2=4 A shírt of fíneíy woven
metaí ríngs whích covers the body and arms.
Counts as armour agaínst aíí meíee attacks.
• Padded Cac6 <5C 107 12s=4 A |acket of quííted
cotton whích protects body and arms. Counts as
armour agaínst bíunt meíee attacks oníy.
• *hic6 Leather Cer6in <5C 107 1$s=4 A |acket
of thíck íeather whích protects body and arms.
Counts as armour agaínst sharp meíee attacks
oníy. Thís type of armour ís actuaííy eíther thíck
íeather or thínner íeather reínforced wíth metaí
stríps or studs at strategíc poínts.
• P-ate Cuirass <5C 207 I3=4 A píate metaí
cuírass whích protects the body. Counts as
armour agaínst meíee attacks and bows, but not
agaínst guns.
Píate cuírasses are often worn by soídíers ín an earíy
campaígn, but not a íate one.
No character can swím ín armour, so ít ís rareíy worn
aboard shíp. Metaí armours (maíí, scaíe and píate) |ust
puíí you straíght down and íeather or quííted armours
rapídíy become wateríogged and, ííkewíse, puíí you down.
It ís aíso common for dueííísts to fíght bare chested to
prove that they were not wearíng a maíí shírt beíow theír
cíothes.
Me-ee 1ea"ons
Attacks wíth meíee weapons requíre Fíghtíng checks, or
Throwíng checks íf the weapon ís thrown. Rather than
tryíng to gíve game vaíues for every kínd of weapon you
can thínk of, ínstead weapons are organísed ínto groups,
such as físt weapons. It ís up to the GM to decíde whích
group a gíven weapon faíís ínto.
Weapons are descríbed ín the foííowíng format
• 1ea"on 5ame <0ama#e Code7
ncumbrance ,a-ue7 cost7 short ran#eF-on#
ran#e= Descríptíon
The weapons are as foííows:
• .ist 1ea"ons <L7 5C 57 Gs= Físt weapons
íncíude daggers, brass knuckíes, coshes and
cudgeís. They are desígned to be easííy
conceaíed and are popuíar wíth the crímínaí
cíasses. It ís hard to híde a sword, but a dagger
can be easííy conceaíed. Físt weapons can be
thrown as 5/20 weapons.
• 'rdinary 1ea"on <M7 5C 107 12s= Ordínary
weapons are swords, axes, maces and the ííke.
Items specífícaííy desígned as weapons to be
wíeíded ín one hand. Ordínary weapons can be
thrown as 2/10 weapons.
• Great 1ea"on <:7 5C 157 I1= Great weapons
are two handed axes, swords and huge maces.
Items specífícaííy desígned as weapons to be
wíeíded ín both hands. Great weapons can be
thrown as 2/5 weapons.
• Po-e %rm <:7 5C 207 I1J= A poíearm ís a
bíade or heavy weíght on the end of a íong poíe
(usuaííy 6-10ft ín íength). Exampíes of poíearms
íncíude haíberds, poíe axes and gíaíves.
Poíearms are desígned to both swíng and stab,
unííke íong spears whích are oníy íntended for
stabbíng. Poíearm wíeíders have a +10 to attack
roíís untíí they are hít, at whích poínt the +10
becomes a -10 to hít modífíer. Thís represents
the ínítíaí advantage of íength, then the
dísadvantage ít presents when the opponent gets
ínsíde your reach.
• Im"ro,ised 1ea"ons <,aries= If a character
|ust pícks up some handy ob|ect and uses ít as a
weapon, treat ít as a físt, ordínary or great
weapon as descríbed above, but wíth an
addítíonaí -10 on attacks made wíth ít. Thíngs
ííke boardíng píkes (íong spear), feíííng axes
(great axe) and bíg wooden maííets (great mace)
are Great weapons. Hatchets (axe), Marííng spíke
(dagger), beíayíng píns & cudgeís (mace) and
íengths of chaín (fíaíí) wouíd be Ordínary
weapons.
• Staff <M7 5C 10 1s= A símpíe wooden staff,
perhaps 6ft ín íength, wíeíded ín two hands. A
staff has a +10 on attack roíís and can be thrown
as a 2/5 weapon.
• ?ayonets <:7 5C 57 I1= Carbínes, Muskets,
Musketoons and Rífíed Muskets can be fítted wíth
a bayonet turníng them ínto a fearsome H
damage meíee weapon. Fíttíng a bayonet
requíres one actíon.
The most commoníy encountered weapons are kníves,
daggers and cudgeís.. aíí físt weapons, swords, whích are
ordínary weapons and haíberds (the standard arm of
soídíers not armed wíth guns) whích are Great weapons.
?o+s
Attacks wíth Bows and Crossbows requíre Archery checks.
Bows are rareíy encountered, havíng been superseded by
fírearms ín vírtuaííy aíí ínstances. About the oníy tíme
characters may expect to encounter bows ís when fíghtíng
índíans or símííar natíve tríbes. Crossbows are rareíy seen
anywhere but are sometímes used because they are
aímost sííent when fíred. A short or íong bow needs one
actíon to ready to fíre agaín after a shot. A crossbow
needs four actíons to ready to fíre agaín foííowíng a shot.
• Short ?o+ <M7 5C 107 10s7 5F150= Around
3ft ín íength and can be used when mounted.
• Lon# ?o+ <:7 5C 157 1$s 2F200= Around 6ft
ín íength, the íong bow ís a very íarge weapon.
• Crossbo+ <:7 5C 157 I1 10F150= A faíríy
compact but powerfuí weapon whích hurís a
heavy boít, shorter and heavíer than an arrow.
=3
?-ac6"o+der Guns
Attacks wíth guns requíre Shootíng checks. Each shot
requíres one baíí and an eíghth of an ounce of powder.
• ?-ac6"o+der4 Fíve pounds per cask. A cask ís
ENC 20 and hoíds twenty pounds of powder
• ?a--s4 One shííííng for one pound of baíís (ENC
5), whích ís 20 baíís.
• Po+der :orn4 Used to store powder. Ten pence
(ENC 5) and hoíds 40 shots worth of powder. The
powder horn ís normaííy síung round the neck
and shouíder on a thong.
• Cartrid#e bo&4 (ENC 5) and 2s 6d. Hoíds 20
paper cartrídges for a musket. The box ís usuaííy
worn at the híp.
Uníess stated otherwíse, reíoadíng a gun barreí requíres
four actíons.
The ínformatíon for each weapon ís gíven ín thís format:
• 1ea"on 5ame <0ama#e Code7
ncumbrance ,a-ue7 cost7 short ran#eF-on#
ran#e= Descríptíon
Weapons are organísed by the Shootíng specíaííty whích
reíates to theír use.
:and#uns
Aíí handguns are fíred one-handed.
• Poc6et Pisto- <M7 5C 27 I17 20F20= A smaíí
pístoí desígned to be carríed conceaíed (requíres
a Notíce check to fínd on a search). Cost one
pound.
• .-int-oc6 Pisto- <M7 5C 57 I1J7 15F$0= A
símpíe pístoí, síngíe shot. Cost one and a haíf
pounds.
• ?-underbuss Pisto- <M7 5C 57 I1J7 25F35=4
A bíunderbuss pístoí ís an open mouthed fííntíock
pístoí desígned to fííí an area wíth íead. Cost one
and haíf pounds.
• >o--ey Pisto- <:7 5C 57 I/7 15FG0= A pístoí
versíon of the voííey gun (descríbed beíow) wíth
oníy fíve barreís. When the trígger ís puííed aíí
fíve barreís fíre símuítaneousíy. Thís gíves you
two attack roíís agaínst the same target. It takes
four actíons to reíoad each barreí and aíí fíve
barreís must be reíoaded before the gun can be
fíred agaín.
• 0oub-e ?arre--ed Pisto- <M7 5C 57 I37
15F50= Has two shots before needíng reíoadíng.
Can fíre both barreís símuítaneousíy at the same
target causíng H damage (stííí make oníy one
attack check though) or fíre each barreí
separateíy (aíthough each shot ís separate
actíon). A pístoí wíth two barreís síde by síde,
each wíth íts own íock.
• *urno,er "isto- <M7 5C 57 I57 15FG0= Has
four shots before needíng reíoadíng. It has four
barreís arranged on a spíndíe, the weapon ís
fíred then the next barreí manuaííy rotated ínto
píace to fíre. Turníng the barreí requíres a síngíe
actíon.
Lon#arms
Longarms are desígned to be fíred two-handed, but may
be fíred one-handed wíth a -20 on attack roíís.
• Carbine <M7 5C 107 I27 10F100= A weapon
whích ís somewhere between a pístoí and rífíe ín
íength. Popuíar wíth cavaíry uníts.
• Mus6etoon <M7 5C 107 I2J7 10F150= A
shortened musket.
• Mus6et <:7 5C 157 I2J7 5F200= A íong
smoothbore weapon.
• 2if-ed mus6et <:7 5C 157 I57 5F300= A rífíed
musket, quíte rare and expensíve stííí. Oníy
avaííabíe ín íate campaígns.
• ?-underbuss <M7 5C 157 I17 25F30= A
bíunderbuss ís an open mouthed shotgun
desígned to fííí an area wíth íead when fíred. A
síngíe shot gíves you two attack roíís.
• >o--ey Gun <M7 5C 157 I127 10F100= A short
carbíne type weapon wíth seven barreís
arranged ín a círcíe. When the trígger ís puííed aíí
seven barreís fíre símuítaneousíy. A síngíe shot
gíves you three attack roíís whích can be spread
amongst any or aíí targets, aíthough aíí the
targets must be wíthín a 10ft díameter círcíe. It
takes four actíons to reíoad each barreí and the
weapon cannot be fíred untíí aíí seven barreís
have been reíoaded.
• Shot#un <:7 5C 157 I27 20F70= A shotgun
fíres a spray of smaíí peííets wíth each shot.
• 0oub-e ?arre--ed Shot#un <:7 5C 157 I37
20F70= A shotgun wíth two shots. It can fíre them
separateíy or both together, for VH damage.
Each barreí requíres four actíons to ready to fíre
agaín after shootíng, aíthough the shotgun can
be fíred wíth oníy one barreí ready (íímítíng ít to
one shot).
Gunnery 1ea"ons
Gunnery weapons are desígned to be fíred from fíxed
posítíons and are basícaííy scaíed down shíps cannon.
• ?oat Gun <M7 5C 507 I57 5F70=4 A boat gun ís
an eníarged bíunderbuss (or a reduced swíveí
gun, dependíng on your poínt of víew) desígned
to be fíred from a píntíe mount on a smaíí boat.
When fíred from a mounted posítíon ít has an
effectíve ENC of 0. When fíred you get four
attacks whích can be spread agaínst any or aíí
targets, who must aíí be wíthín a 10ft díameter
círcíe.
• S+i,e- Gun <>:7 5C 2007 I207 2F200= A
heavy shíp-mounted weapon. When fíred from a
mounted posítíon ít has an effectíve ENC of 0. It
can be íoaded wíth soííd shot (usíng the vaíues
above). When íoaded wíth peííets the range ís
5/100, the damage H, and you get four attacks
whích can be spread agaínst any or aíí targets,
who must aíí be wíthín a 10ft díameter círcíe.
&"-osi,es
Ruíes for expíosíve effects can be found ín the ruíes
mechanícs chapter. Some common expíosíves íncíude:
• Grenado <5C 57 12s7 10F30=4 A prímítíve
hand grenade. Use the expíosíon ruíes ín the
generaí ruíes sectíon when handííng a grenado. A
grenado ís a smaíí baíí of metaí, pottery or gíass
wíth a gunpowder charge ínsíde. It typícaííy
weíghs around two ounces. The fuse ís íít as one
actíon, then thrown as a second. It then
detonates at the end of the round.
• ?-ac6"o+der4 Treat as a basíc expíosíon for
every ounce of bíackpowder (ENC 1 per ounce).
bíackpowder ís not thrown, ít ís set ín píace and
detonated by a íít fuse. Cost one shííííng per
ounce.
• Stin6"ot <5C 57 Gs7 5F20=4 A stínkpot ís not
an expíosíve devíce, but has been píaced here
because ít ís símííar ín use to a grenado. It ís íít
and thrown ín the same way as a grenado and
when ít íands ít creates a cíoud of írrítant gas
=4
whích causes nausea, tears and vomítíng ín
anyone caught nearby (the effect starts at the
end of the round ín whích ít ís íít). Any one ín the
cíoud must make a DIFF 50 Heaíth(constítutíon)
check at the start of the round. If they faíí, they
can do nothíng ín that round (no movement,
actíons, dodges or parríes). If they succeed they
can act normaííy. The cíoud íasts for 2d10 rounds
(roíí when ít detonates). Stínkpots were
commoníy thrown aboard enemy shots before
boardíng, to demoraííse the crew. A wet rag
wrapped round the nose and mouth gíves a +10
on the Heaíth checks. Stínkpots are consídered to
be unbaíanced ob|ects for throwíng purposes.
Both grenado's and Stínkpots can be thrown índírectíy.
Thís means íobbíng the grenado or stínkpot at a íocatíon
you can't see. If you do thís, you can't Aím the attack, so
the snapshot penaíty aíways appííes.
=?
0Piracy is only the sea term for ro!!ery #ithin the (urisdiction of the
,dmiralty'''If the mariner of any ship shall violently dispossess the master
and after#ards carry a#ay the ship itself or any of the goods #ith a felonious
intention in any place #here the 9ord ,dmiralty hath (urisdiction this is
ro!!ery and piracy1
-British ,dmiralty court definition of piracy in 1>?>
>.
Pirates or Pri,ateers8
When startíng a campaígn you shouíd decíde íf characters
are prívateers or pírates.
Pírates are crímínaís, wanted by everyone, wíth few safe
harbours. Note that pírates stííí íose haíf theír príze
money, |ust ííke anyone eíse, but rather than thís goíng to
the governments who's íícence they are operatíng under,
ííke a prívateer, ít ís ínstead íost to fences and others who
handíe stoíen goods.
Prívateers, on the other hand, are operatíng under íícense
to a sovereígn power (ín thís game, Brítaín) and can fínd
safe haven ín that powers ports and waters. A prívateer
wííí not be attacked by warshíps, or other prívateers, of íts
own natíon eíther.
Many pírates seek to buy a íetter of marque sometíme ín
theír career, movíng under the auspíces of that natíon. A
íetter of marque, as a rough guíde, costs around fífteen
hundred pounds.
%n#-o"hi-ia
Prívateers and Pírates assumes that píayer characters are
eíther Brítísh, or foreígn saííors servíng aboard Brítísh
shíps.
ar-y ,s. Late Cam"ai#n
An earíy campaígn ís set ín the "Goíden Age of Píracy", a
períod whích ís generaííy accepted to have been, very
approxímateíy from 1680-1725. Characters wííí most
ííkeíy take the roíe of pírates and wííí be set ín eíther the
Spanísh maín (the Caríbbean) or the Indían Ocean (based
out of Madagascar)
A íate campaígn ís set duríng the Angío-French wars
whích períodícaííy bíew up from around 1750 to 1810. The
íate campaígn concentrates on adventures eíther round
the Engíísh channeí and/or Medíterranean, wíth píayer
characters most ííkeíy based ín the channeí ísíands, or
around the Afrícan goíd coast.
% 5a,a- Cam"ai#n
Whííst these ruíes are prímarííy desígned to run pírate or
prívateer centred games there ís nothíng to stop you
usíng them to run navaí (or other) games ín the same
períod. Partícuíaríy duríng the Angío-French wars, most
Captaíns (partícuíaríy of Frígates, Síoops and Brígs)
operated much ííke prívateers, huntíng enemy shíppíng
for the príze money. A íot of Navaí captaíns |oíned up to
get rích, retíríng wíth a comfortabíe pííe of príze money.
For such a game the characters are members of a warshíp
crew and shouíd aíí take Connectíons:Navy. Unííke the
more democratíc prívateer or pírate games warshíps were
ruíed by stríct díscípííne, the Captaíns word was íaw,
enforced by other offícers and a maríne contíngent.
Characters ín navaí campaígns are aíso ííkeíy to receíve
orders from the Admíraíty to perform specífíc míssíons,
whích gíves the GM a great opportuníty to have some fun
wíth píayers.
%d,enture Ideas
The foííowíng sectíon gíves you, the GM, some possíbíe
ídeas for Prívateers and Pírates adventures.
• The characters íntercept a merchant carryíng some
very precíous gems. If they ínterrogate the captaín
they can fínd out where the gems came from, a secret
míne, and raíd ít.
• The characters fínd out that a smaíí town whích ís
meant to be garrísoned ísn't, the garríson has íeft and
the town ís undefended.
• A íarge bounty ís offered for someone, do you want
the money?
• An enemy government has put a bounty on you and
the bounty hunters attack duríng shore íeave.
• Your shíp ís ímpounded by a foreígn government. You
must steaí ít back.
• You encounter a shíp of the ííne whích hunts you, the
captaín may have some personaí vendetta.
• A faír maíden has been kídnapped by dastardíy
víííaíns, her famííy offer a íarge reward for her safe
return.
• You are drafted by the mííítary to go on a specíaí
míssíon. Thís míght be to coííect a very ímportant
passenger, or deííver one, coííect some ítem or
message, or deííver ít.
• Reconnoítre an enemy stronghoíd masqueradíng as
traders.
• You get ínto a drunken bet wíth another character
captaín and hís crew. The one who íoses the bet íoses
theír shíp.
• Rumours of a íong íost goíd míne have arísen, foííow
the cíues to fínd the míne.
g
>1
*he Late Cam"ai#n
The íate campaígn ís focussed around the Engíísh channeí
and Medíterranean ports, wíth possíbíe ventures to the
Indían ocean.
*he Channe- Is-ands and the Channe-
Duríng the íate eíghteenth and earíy níneteenth century
the channeí ísíands were an actíve base for prívateers and
pírates whích, aíthough offícíaííy frowned upon, were
toíerated by the íocaí government because of the weaíth
they bought ín. Any vesseí operatíng from the ísíands was
requíred to have at íeast one or two natíve ísíanders
aboard theír vesseí.
The ísíands consíst of two baíííwícks; Guernsey and |ersey.
|ersey íncíudes the maín ísíand of |ersey and the two
smaííer, unínhabíted, ísíands of Mínquíers and Ecréhous.
Guernsey encompasses the ísíe of Guernsey and the
smaííer ísíands of Aíderney, Sark, Herm, |ethou, Brecqhou,
Burhou and other ísíets.
Shíps operatíng from the channeí ísíands typícaííy saíí out
ínto the channeí, the southern north sea and the channeí
approaches and hunt for prey. There ís a steady fíow of
traffíc through the channeí, traveíííng to and from the
varíous ports aíong the channeís Skííís and Specíaíítíes.
i
*he ar-y Cam"ai#n
The earíy campaígn ís focussed around the Spanísh Maín,
Caríbbean Isíands and Fíorída.
*he S"anish Main
The Spanísh Maín was the area that now compríses
Centraí Ameríca and the Northern Coast of South Ameríca
(the Spanísh coíoníes ín the Amerícas). The centre of the
the Spanísh Maín wouíd probabíy be Daríen on the
Isthmus of Panama. The íand was rích ín goíd, sííver,
precíous gems and other resources. Most of the weaíth of
the Maíníand was not íocated where shíps couíd easííy
reach ít, whích meant that íarge quantítíes of precíous
metaís and gems had to be be moved by pack anímaís to
fortífíed ports that were buíít aíong the coast. Some of the
key port cítíes were port cítíes were Portobeíío and Daríen
ín the area of present day Panama and Cartagena near
present day Venezueía.
Pírates were weíí aware of the methods Spaín used for
movíng treasure and they were wííííng to rísk the dangers
of the mosquíto ínfested swamps ín order to reííeve Spaín
of íts weaíth. Despíte heavííy armed guards, the traíí
through the |ungíe afforded ampíe opportuníty for pírates
to ambush the goíd traíns. The traíís were narrow, and díd
not aííow the Spaníards to maneuver. Furthermore the
Pírates wouíd often attack at dusk, after the Spaníards
had had a íong and arduous march through the |ungíe. If
the ambush faííed, the Pírates couíd meít back ínto the
|ungíe, confídent that the Spaníards wouíd not foííow.
Soídíers couíd not pursue the attackers for fear that the
ambush was símpíy a díversíon and that the maín attack
wouíd occur after the Spanísh spíít up theír forces.
The fortífíed ports were probabíy the best defended
íocatíons aíong the Spanísh Maín and aíso the ríchest. For
the most part ít was fooíhardy to attempt an attack on
such a heavííy fortífíed area despíte the ríches that ít
contaíned and pírates rareíy bothered to attack such a
píace. Francís Drake was was an exceptíon to thís ruíe, as
was Henry Morgan. Morgan's most daríng
accompííshment was the sackíng of Portobeíío, aíthough
he was actíng as a prívateer ín the servíce of the Engíísh
at the tíme.
The ports themseíves had hígh, thíck waíís and powerfuí
shore batteríes whích aííowed them to engage raíders
íong before the raíders couíd begín fíríng (the port couíd
often get off two or three saívoes before the raíder got
ínto range to fíre íts fírst). In addítíon each port aíso had
íts own squadron of gaííeons whích wouíd move to
íntercept raíders before they got wíthín fíríng range of the
port. The maín vuínerabíííty ín the ports was theír íack of
protectíon from the íandward síde. Spaín assumed that
the |ungíe was good enough protectíon for thís area and,
most of the tíme, they were correct.
*he ?ahamas and Pirates
The Bahamas were orígínaííy ínhabíted by a group of
Arawak Indíans known as the Lucayan. Orígínaííy from the
South Amerícan contínent, some of the Arawak had been
dríven north ínto the Caríbbean by the Caríb Indíans.
Unííke theír Caríb neíghbours, the Lucayan were generaííy
peacefuí, more ínvoíved ín físhíng than agrícuíture, and
not canníbaíístíc.
The Spaníards made no attempt to settíe but operated
síave raíds on the peacefuí Arawak that depopuíated the
ísíands, and by the tíme the Engíísh arríved the Bahamas
were unínhabíted.
In 1629 Charíes I of Engíand granted the ísíands to one of
hís mínísters, but no attempt at settíement was made. In
1648 Wííííam Sayíe íed a group of Engíísh Purítans from
Bermuda to, ít ís thought, Eíeuthera Isíand. Thís
settíement met wíth extreme adversíty and díd not
prosper, but other Bermudan mígrants contínued to
arríve. New Provídence was settíed ín 1656. By 1670 the
Bahamas were gíven to the Duke of Aíbemaríe and fíve
others as a propríetary coíony. The propríetors were
mostíy unínterested ín the ísíands, and few of the
settíements prospered. Píracy became a way of íífe for
many. The pírate communíty was íarge and weíí
estabííshed and quíckíy became a source of concern to
the Crown, prímarííy due to íts proxímíty to the Brítísh
coíoníes ín North Ameríca. In response a navaí statíon was
set up ín the Bahamas to poííce íocaí waters.
In 1717 the coíony reverted to the Crown and seríous
efforts were made to end the píracy. The fírst royaí
governor, Woodes Rogers, succeeded ín controíííng the
pírates but mostíy at hís own expense and wíth ííttíe
assístance from Engíand. Consequentíy, the ísíands
remaíned poor and susceptíbíe to Spanísh attack.
Rogers was an exceptíonaí pírate hunter. He offered
pardons to pírates ín an effort to get them to turn. He was
síncere ín hís actíons and eventuaííy 2,000 pírates
overcame theír suspícíon and accepted the pardons and
made the Bahamas vírtuaííy pírate free. Rogers knew the
habíts of pírates and he was certaín that many of the
pardoned pírates wouíd go back to theír evíí ways. But
thís concerned hím ííttíe. Rogers recruíted men from
among those pardoned to hunt down those who returned
to theír oíd ways. The move was quíte successfuí and
eventuaííy many of the brethren of the coast were
"dancíng the devíí's |íg" on the gaííows.
Heíd for a few days by the U.S. Navy ín 1776, and for
>2
aímost a year by Spaín ín 1782-83, the ísíands reverted to
Engíand ín 1783 and receíved a boost ín popuíatíon from
íoyaíísts and theír síaves who fíed the Uníted States after
the Amerícan Revoíutíon. Cotton píantatíons brought
some prosperíty to the ísíands, but when the soíí gave out
and síavery was aboííshed ín 1834, the Bahamas'
endemíc poverty returned.
?ermuda
Bermuda consísts of seven maín ísíands and over 150
smaííer ísíets. It was fírst charted by the Spaníards around
1515 and not settíed untíí an Engíísh shíp, wíth over 150
peopíe aboard, was bíown off course and shíp wrecked
there. The survívors had no way to íeave the ísíand so
they founded a coíony.
Bermuda was not aíong the trade routes between the
Spanísh Maín and Spaín but ít was an ídeaí stopover for
traveííers between the Azores and North Ameríca,
partícuíaríy South Caroíína. Consequentíy the Brítísh
made ít a permanent coíony and put a temporary mííítary
garríson there, a move whích the Spanísh authorítíes díd
not en|oy. In the 1600's and up to 1734, Bermuda was
ínstrumentaí ín the Afrícan síave trade and, on more than
one occasíon, síaves ín Bermuda out numbered settíers
and víoíent rebeíííons were put down. In 1734, Engíand
outíawed síavery and the coíony of Bermuda foííowed the
Crown, but thís díd not stop the smuggííng of síaves
through Bermuda onto the Amerícan coíoníes.
The reefs and numerous smaíí ísíands made an exceííent
haven for pírates but not beíng on the maín trade route
between Spaín and the Spanísh Maín resuíted ín the
pírates often sackíng Bermuda. From 1701 onwards,
Brítaín consídered Bermuda vítaí to íts New Woríd
ínterests and made ít a permanent mííítary post of the
Royaí Navy and Army. The sígnífícantíy íncreased rísk to
pírates resuíted ín many turníng from píracy to
smuggííng.
.-orida
Compared to the rest of the Spanísh Maín Fíorída was no
great treasure trove but íts íocatíon made ít strategícaííy
ímportant. Spaín used Fíorída as a stagíng area for íts
convoys so groups of heavííy-íaden Spanísh vesseís,
caííed píate fíeets, usuaííy saííed up the Guíf Stream
through the straíts that paraííeí Fíorída´s Keys. Pírates
preyed on these fíeets and hurrícanes created addítíonaí
hazards, sometímes wreckíng the shíps on the reefs and
shoaís aíong Fíorída´s shores.
An Engíísh íncursíon aíong the St. |ohns Ríver ín 1564
threatened Spaín's treasure fíeets whích saííed aíong
Fíorída's shoreííne on theír way back to Spaín and, as a
resuít, Kíng Phííííp II named Don Pedro Menendez de
Avííes, Spaín's most experíenced admíraí, as governor of
Fíorída, ínstructíng hím to expíore and to coíoníze the
terrítory. Menendez was aíso ínstructed to dríve out any
pírates or settíers from other natíons, shouíd they be
found there.
Menendez arríved off the coast of Fíorída on the28th of
August 1565, the Feast Day of St. Augustíne. Eíeven days
íater, he and hís 600 soídíers and settíers came ashore at
the síte of the Tímucuan Indían víííage of Seíoy wíth
banners fíyíng and trumpets soundíng. He hastííy fortífíed
the fíedgííng víííage and named ít St. Augustíne. It was
here that Spaín wouíd estabíísh íts most Northern post on
the Spanísh Maín and try to wípe out the scourge of
píracy. Runaway síaves, dísgruntíed merchantmen and
dísínheríted youth fíocked to the Tortugas, Poínt Royaí
and other wííd píaces known as recruítíng centres for
pírate shíps and, from there, |oíned ín the search for
píunder. On the 10
th
of September 1622 a twenty-eíght
shíp convoy íeft Havana headed for Spaín, íoaded to the
gunwaíes wíth treasure from South and Centraí Ameríca.
A two day hurrícane sunk eíght of the shíps and, as wíth
most shípwrecks, Spaín attempted to saívage what ít
couíd and pírates wouíd use the opportuníty for easy
píckíngs. Spanísh saííors or weíí to do passengers who
managed to survíve a shíp wreckíng storm couíd very weíí
fínd them ín the hands of pírates and beíng soíd ínto
síavery or ransomed for reward. Shíps sunk ín shaííower
water wouíd be quíckíy vísíted by patroíííng pírates and
survívors were oníy worth píckíng up íf they couíd offer
some kínd of príze.
Ga--o+s Point and &ecution 0oc6
Gaííows poínt was íocated on the Paíísadoes ín |amaíca.
Often, after the pírate was hanged, he wouíd then be
fítted ín a suít of írons and díspíayed on a sandy cay near
Port Royaí.
Executíon Dock was ín London on the Thames. Many a
pírate were sent on "the other |ourney" from thís píace. It
was customary to then hang the pírates ín írons aíong the
Thames, especíaííy at the mouth of the Thames, caííed
Graves Poínt, as a remínder to aíí saííors what became of
mutíneers and pírates.
Char-eston <Char-es *o+n=
Whííst not ín the Spanísh Maín, Charíeston had a very
actíve smuggííng trade ín íts coíoníaí days and was a
popuíar port wíth pírates seekíng to refít and en|oys íts
hospítaííty. Locaí attítudes to píracy fíuctuated wíídíy ín
Charíeston, dependíng on the Governor of the tíme but,
for the most part, pírates were not weícome.
:a,ana7 Cuba
The Spanísh port of Havana was one of the most
ímportant Spanísh cítíes wíth an easííy protected harbour
and ídeaííy íocated to act as a stagíng area for the íong
voyage to Spaín.
The Spanísh Sííver fíeet wouíd start íts coííectíon ín
Venezueía and Peru, makíng stops ín Panama and aíong
the coast of Mexíco. They wouíd then head for Havana
and form a massíve fíotííía before crossíng the Atíantíc.
Thís huge fíow of ríches ínto and out of the area resuíted
ín a íot of pírate actívíty and the ísíands of the Fíorída
Keys became the stagíng area for pírates who who íay ín
waít for the Sííver Fíeet as ít approached Havana. Pírates
wouíd míngíe among the saíoons and whore houses ín
Havana and íísten to the ídíe gossíp for any ínformatíon
concerníng when the shíps wouíd be arrívíng. Typícaííy
the fíeets came to Ameríca ín the íate summer. They
wouíd wínter around Cartegena, Vera Cruz, and Acapuíco.
In the Spríng the shíps wouíd make theír way to Havana
and, once assembíed, they knew they had |ust a few short
months before the Hurrícanes wouíd make safe passage
to Spaín an ímpossíbíííty. The Spaníards knew ít, the
pírates knew ít, and the Spaníards knew the pírates knew
ít.
The pírates had ííttíe troubíe fíndíng out when and where
the the sííver fíeets wouíd be comíng from. Many of the
Spanísh coíonísts throughout the "Maín" and ín Havana
were more than wííííng to teíí them anythíng they wanted
to know, for a príce. The Spanísh royaí famííy controííed
the "Casa de Contratacíón" or House of Trade and
stípuíated that merchants wíthín the coíoníes couíd oníy
trade wíth specífíc merchant seamen, creatíng an
effectíve monopoíy whích bred resentment.
Most merchants wouíd happííy trade wíth anyone, whích
resuíted ín a huge amount of corruptíon and bríbery.
As tíme passed, the town and ít's harbour became weíí
fortífíed, wíth the forts, Castííío de íos Tres Reyes deí
Mooro and Castííío de San Saívador de ía Punta protectíng
the entrance of the harbour. A fíeet of Spanísh gaííeons
wouíd aíso patroí the water ín search of pírates. And íf thís
were not enough, every níght, a íarge chaín was drawn
>5
across the mouth of the harbour to prevent saboteurs
from enteríng and sínkíng shíps. The reefs outsíde the
harbour added to the protectíon as weíí as added to the
íoss of many sííver shíps.
w
*ortu#a
Tortuga or Turtíe Isíand, presentíy known as Iíe de ía
Tortue íay off the Northwest shore of present day Haítí, on
the Isíand of Híspanoía. Tortuga ís approxímateíy 20 mííes
íong and no more than 4 mííes wíde. The French settíed
the ísíand ín 1625 (even though the Spanísh díscovered ít)
and there were repeated skírmíshes between France and
Spaín over the ísíe, íts ownershíp changíng hands severaí
tímes.
The French Governors of Tortuga wouíd, for a príce, offer
safe harbour to |ust about any shíp that wasn't Spanísh
and were ready to íssues íetters of Marque to |ust about
anybody to attack Spanísh shíppíng. As such Tortuga
became the home of the Brethren of the Coast and by the
íate 17
th
century most of the popuíatíon of Tortuga was
made of Pírates and Prívateers. The pírate fíeets offer
both protectíon and íncome to the smaíí coíony and most
of the pírates/prívateers are Engíísh or French.
By 1670 the ísíand was actíveíy promoted as a base of
operatíons for pírates and prívateers and for the dísposaí
of booty.
By the 1680s, íaws were made that Engíísh seaman
saíííng under foreígn fíags were traítors to the Throne and
pírates. Severaí Engííshmen were convícted and hanged
for píracy after attackíng Dutch shíps.
When the Spanísh goíd began to dwíndíe the maíníy
French buccaneers of Tortuga turned theír attentíon to
|amaícan píantatíons and Engíísh Merchant shíps.
Thís íed to protests from the Engíísh government to the
Kíng of France. Eventuaííy the buccaneers were prívateers
oníy ín name and attacked anythíng that wasn't French.
Fínaííy, ín 1684 the Treaty of Ratísbone was sígned whích
formaííy ended hostíííty between France and Spaín. Wíth
the treaty came the wíthdrawaí of aíí Letters of Marques.
From that poínt on, the Buccaneers who contínued attacks
were pírates and were quíckíy hanged. Many of the
former prívateers were empíoyed by the government of
France to hunt down theír former brethren of the Coast.
Whííe píracy wouíd contínue ín and around Tortuga for
years to come, ít no íonger en|oyed the status as a Home
of the Buccaneers.
Port 2oya-7 Camaica
In the míd- 1600s |amaíca was a Brítísh coíony
surrounded by Spanísh and Portuguese property. For most
of thís tíme Spaín and Engíand were at war and Port Royaí
was a safe protected harbour on |amaíca wíth a good
draught and centraííy íocated aíong the trade routes
between Panama and Spaín. Buccaneers fíocked to Port
Royaí, the de facto headquarters of raíds agaínst the
Spanísh Maín.
As wíth any mííítary operatíon, the camp foííowers aíso
came as weíí as anyone eíse wantíng to make a doubíoon
or two off of drunken saííors, makíng Port Royaí not oníy a
Prívateeríng centeríng but aíso a den of sín and více.
When the Brítísh occupíed |amaíca they estabííshed a fort
at Port Royaí to díscourage the Spaníards from comíng
ínto the harbour. Unfortunateíy, theír wasn't reaííy a Navy
to protect the harbour or |amaíca for that matter and the
Governor of |amaíca took ít upon hímseíf to íssue Letters
of Marque to raíse a Prívate Navy or Prívateers. He
recruíted these prívateers from among the buccaneers ín
Tortuga and probabíy some of the greatest storíes to ever
come from the Goíden Age of Píracy.
The Prívateers quíckíy found royaí protectíon for theír
attacks on Spanísh and Dutch shíps. The town of Port
Royaí quíckíy became fuíí of íooted goíd, |eweís, and other
products that wouíd have been goíng to Spaín.
The prívateers wouíd return wíth theír píunder and quíckíy
squander ít on drínkíng and whoríng. Very soon they
wouíd be fíat broke and be off agaín to raíd the Spanísh
Maín on board another Prívateer.
Port Royaí had a thrívíng trade wíth London and the
Amerícan coíoníes and the peopíe wore the íatest fashíons
from London. In exchange for the fíne cíothíng and other
manufactured goods, Port Royaí sent back goíd, sugar
cane, and other raw materíaís.
Foííowíng the end of the War wíth Spaín the síave trade
became more ímportant to Port Royaí. The píantatíon
owners of |amaíca were seeíng much better profíts from
theír cheap síave íabour and íooked down on Port Royaí
as an eyesore and many of the buccaneers contínued to
píy theír trade oníy to wínd up swíngíng ín chaíns at
Gaííows's poínt.
*he arth!ua6e of 1$)2
The Earthquake of 1692 was |ust one of many naturaí
dísasters to hít Port Royaí. A hurrícane ín 1655 had
actuaííy separated the town from the rest of |amaíca as
weíí.
Port Royaí ís the íast cay ín a ííne of connected cays
extendíng from the mouth of the Hope Ríver.
Because of South Easteríy wínd and Western ocean
current, sedíments from the Hope Ríver were deposíted
aíong the ocean fíoor extendíng westward from the mouth
of the ríver. Over tíme, a seríes of cays or smaíí ísíands
formed as coraí reefs began to grow ín the rích sedíments
deposíted by the ríver. These cays contínued to coííect
more and more sedíment untíí the Paíísadoes Spít formed.
The hurrícane of 1655 washed away portíons of the top
sand and separated Port Royaí from the rest of the Isíand,
the Engíísh sunk oíd shíps and dumped ín rock and sand
to rebuííd the spít and reattach the town to the rest of
|amaíca.
Unfortunateíy for the Paíísadoes spít, the íand was
unstabíe, wíth a bed of íímestone (made from the oíd
coraí reef) and then a íayer of íoose sand on top of the
íímestone. Thís íoose sand often became saturated wíth
water, aííowíng ít to sííp easííy from síde to síde.
On |une the 7
th
1692 a tremendous earthquake struck the
area and the entíre western end of the town sííd ínto the
ocean.
Aímost ímmedíateíy after the quake, a tídaí wave hít the
town. Many of the peopíe who had been haíf buríed by the
quake were drowned by thís tídaí wave and wíthín a few
mínutes over two thousand peopíe díed. To make matters
worse, the cemetery íocated outsíde of town on the
Paíísadoes was opened up by the quake and most of ít sííd
ínto the sea as weíí.
The few survívors rebuíít on the síte but most of |amaíca
preferred buíídíng ín Kíngston, across the bay and ín 1735
a navaí base was estabííshed once more at Port Royaí for
the Brítísh West Indíes Squadron ín íts struggíe agaínst
the French.
*he *a,erns of Port 2oya-4 ?efore the
>6
arth!ua6e of 1$)2
• The Bíack Dog, 1692
• The Bíue Anchor, 1679
• The Cat and Fíddíe, 1676
• The Cheshíre Cheese, 1684
• The Feathers, 1681
• The Green Dragon, 1674
• The |amaícan Arms, 1677
• The Kíng's Arm, (no. 1) 1677
• The Kíng's Arm, (no. 2) 1677
• The Shíp, 1674
• The Sígn of Bacchus, 1673
• The Sígn of the Mermaíd, 1685
• The Sígn of the George, 1682
• The Sugar Loaf, 1667
• The Three Crowns, 1673
• The Three Maríners, 1677
• The Three Tunns, 1665
• The Wíndmííí, 1684
Mada#ascar and the Indian 'cean
Madagascar was a íarge ísíand íyíng approxímateíy 250
mííes off the southeast coast of Afríca. The índígenous
peopíes ííved ín smaíí tríbes, wídeíy spaced apart and no
European power íaíd cíaím to the ísíand. It had a
muítítude of sheítered covers, fresh water and abundant
foods (íncíudíng íímes and oranges) and beaches suítabíy
for the careeníng of vesseís. It's key asset was ít's
proxímíty to the ma|or Red Sea and Indían Ocean trade
routes and, as a consequence, many pírates chose to use
Madagascar as theír base of operatíons. Its peak was príor
to the Goíden Age of píracy ín Caríbbean, but ít díd see a
sígnífícant íeveí of actívíty as ít became more and more
díffícuít to operate ín the Caríbbean (due to competítíon
and íncreasíng poíícíng from the European powers after
the European wars ended).
Bands of pírates estabííshed a varíety of bases on
Madagascar wíth each base under the command of a
síngíe pírate referred to as a kíng. The prímary encíaves
íncíuded |ohanna Isíand, Ranter Bay, Maurítíus, Saínt
Augustíne´s Bay, Réuníon Isíand, Fort Dauphín and Îíe
Saínte Maríe. The íast proved very popuíar wíth pírates,
and by 1700 around 1,500 of them ííved there and
seventeen vesseís made ít theír home port.
In 1698 the pírates of Madagascar were offered pardons,
whích many took, ín part because squadrons of warshíps
now patroííed the Indían Ocean and Red Sea ín ever
íncreasíng numbers, protectíng the íucratíve Indía trade.
Madagascar´s popuíaríty and popuíatíon decííned and by
1711 íess than one hundred pírates remaíned on the
ísíand. Madagascar had a sííght, but short ííved, return to
popuíaríty when Woodes Rogers succeeded ín drívíng the
pírates out of New Provídence ín the Caríbbean.
*he Go-d Coast
The Goíd Coast was the ímmedíate area of coast around
Ghana ín West Afríca. It was a prímary hub of the trans-
Atíantíc síave trade and many Caríbbean pírates spent at
íeast some tíme ín the waters. It never achíeved the same
status as an area for píracy as the Indían Ocean or
Caríbbean.
h
>=
Im"ortant Ports
The foííowíng sectíon detaíís a number of ímportant ports
ín the Spanísh Maín, Indían Ocean and Goíd Coast. These
ports have been specífícaííy chosen because they are bíg
enough for shíps to come and go wíthout causíng a huge
stír. There are many more ports whích shíps can use, but
these are the most ííkeíy ones for crews to frequent.
Im"ortant Ports on the S"anish Main
• Charíeston (Brítísh)- Fíorída
• Bermuda (Brítísh)
• Port Royaí (Brítísh)- |amaíca
• St. Augustíne (Spanísh)- Fíorída
• Havana (Spanísh)- Cuba
• Santíago (Spanísh)- Cuba
• Campeche (Spanísh)- Centraí Ameríca
• Honduras (Spanísh)- Centraí Ameríca
• Portobeíío (Spanísh)- Centraí Ameríca
• Cartagena (Spanísh)- Centraí Ameríca
• Port o'Spaín (Spanísh)- Centraí Ameríca
• San |uan (Spanísh)- Puerto Ríco
• Santa Domíngo (Spanísh)- Híspaníoía
• Tortuga (Pírate)- Híspaníoía
• New Provídence (Pírate)- Bahama's
• Curacao (Dutch)- Centraí Ameríca
• Guadeíope (French)- Leeward Isíands
• Martíníque (French)- Leeward Isíands
Im"ortant Ports of the Indian 'cean
• Isíe Ste.Maríe (Pírate)- Madagascar
• Kííwa (Portugaí)- Afríca
• Zanzíbar Isíand (Moorísh)- Afríca
• Ethíopía (Moorísh)- Afríca
• Mocha (Moorísh)- Arabía
• Bombay (Brítísh)- Indía
• Severndroog Isíands (Dutch)- Indía
• Goa (Portugaí)- Indía
• Caíícut (French)- Indía
Im"ortant Ports of the Go-d Coast
• Cape Coast (Brítísh)- Afríca
• Whyda (Brítísh)- Afríca
• Cormantín (Dutch)- Afríca
Pirate Ports
Ports whích are marked as "pírate" are fríendíy to
prívateers and pírates of aíí natíons duríng the Goíden
Age. They are generaííy íawíess and rowdy píaces wíth a
íot of drínkíng and gambííng estabííshments and houses
of ííí repute.
'ther Pirate Ports around the +or-d
Pírate ports have exísted throughout the woríd and
throughout hístory. The Barbary corsaírs favoured Aígíers,
Morocco, Trípoíí, and Tunís for theír havens. The corsaírs
attacked shíps and settíements ín the Medíterranean and
were ínfamous for ensíavíng captíves unabíe to pay theír
ransoms. They were prívateers who, ín part, exísted to
defend North Afrícan from European aggressíon. The
heíght of theír power came duríng the fífteenth and
síxteenth centuríes, but corsaírs stííí attacked shíps ínto
the earíy níneteenth century.
Another port-of-caíí for corsaírs was Bízerte ín Tunís. The
íake behínd the port aííowed many shíps to anchor there,
gívíng them protectíon from those who pursued them. In
addítíon, Bízerte controííed access between the eastern
and western haíves of the Medíterranean, provídíng
corsaírs wíth a treasure trove of shíps to píunder. Long
known as a centre of trade and refuge for the persecuted,
the Repubííc of Saíé (present-day Rabat) aíso attracted
corsaírs. Varíous factíons víed for controí untíí Suítan
Mouíay Raschíd reuníted Morocco ín 1668. He offered hís
protectíon to the corsaírs for a ten percent share of the
profíts, whích eventuaííy íncreased to fífty percent and the
corsaírs turned to more reputabíe pursuíts or íeft Saíé.
In 1717, Kanho|í Angría repuísed an attempt by the Brítísh
to destroy hís ísíand encíave near Bombay and contínued
to prey on East Indíamen ín the Indían Ocean untíí hís
death ín 1729.
Duríng the Amerícan Revoíutíon, French corsaírs found
safe harbour ín Dunkírk, a port ín France that had been
used as a prívateeríng base for hundreds of years. The
French Revoíutíon and the Napoíeoníc Wars brought Saínt
Maío to the fore as a base for corsaírs ííke Robert Surcouf
and Réné Duguay.
In the far east, the Maíay and Dayak pírates preyed on
marítíme shíppíng ín the waters between Síngapore and
Hong Kong from theír haven ín Borneo. The Baíaníní,
based ín |oío, raíded for síaves and preyed on Spanísh
vesseís ín the Phíííppínes untíí the 1860´s when the Brítísh
and Spanísh navíes eradícated the pírates.
Sumatra was another popuíar haven, from whích the At|eh
and Ríau pírates attacked shíps ín the Sundra and
Maíaccan Straíts.
f
>>
:istorica- .i#ures of the Go-den %#e
of Piracy
The entry ín brackets after the characters name ís the
name of theír shíp (íf any). In the case of two or more
names, they had more than one shíp ín theír career.
These are aíí characters from the Earíy Campaígn períod.
?artho-ome+ Portu#ues <Santia#o=
Portugues was most famed for beíng captured to be
executed ín 1666. He escaped, swam to shore, raísed
another pírate band then boarded and took the shíp that
had heíd hím captíve.
?artho-ome+ 2oberts K?-ac6 ?artL
<.ortuneFGood .ortuneF2oya- .ortune=
Arguabíy the greatest pírate of aíí tíme, Roberts became
Captaín of the Royaí Rover ín 1719 foííowíng the death of
Howeíí Davís. In the foííowíng four years he captured over
four hundred vesseís from the Caríbbean to the Indían
Ocean. He was fínaííy kíííed ín 1723 when hís shíp was
cornered by the síxty gun warshíp Swaííow, commanded
by Chaíoner Ogíe. In the fírst broadsíde Roberts throat
was shot away by grapeshot kííííng hím ínstantíy.
Char-es >ane <*reasure=
Vane fought braveíy agaínst Woodes Rogers when he
came to New Provídence ín 1716, meetíng the fíve
warshíps wíth fíre shíps and guns bíazíng. He fíed New
Provídence but contínued to harry shíppíng and the
turncoat pírates of the ísíand for a further three years
before beíng deposed by hís ííeutenant |ohn Rackham for
refusíng to attack a íarge French shíp. He managed to
regaín command of another vesseí íater on but was
eventuaííy hung ín |amaíca after survívíng a hurrícane and
marooníng. The shíp that rescued hím from starvatíon on
the ísíand turned hím over to the authorítíes.
Christo"her Condent <0e-i,erance=
After a reíatíveíy íack íustre career Condent was forced
from New Provídence by Woodes Rogers. He fíed to the
Indían ocean and took an Arab shíp off Bombay worth
150,000 pounds wíth hís smaíí bríg, resuítíng a shareout
of £2000 per man of hís crew. He promptíy retíred,
bought a pardon from the íocaí French governor, marríed
the governors daughter, emígrated to France and became
a weaíthy shíp owner.
d+ard n#-and <.ancy=
Whííst not normaííy renowned for hís generosíty Engíand
became famous when he engaged the East Indíaman
Cassandra, under |ames Macrae, near Madagascar ín
1720. The Cassandra caused 90 pírate casuaítíes for a
íoss of 37 men before beíng run aground and her crew
havíng to fíee ínto the |ungíe. Macrae braved certaín
death by returníng to barter wíth Engíand for the return of
hís shíp and Engíand was so ímpressed by the man that
he gave them the battered Fancy and íet hím keep haíf
hís cargo. Unfortunateíy, as a dírect resuít of hís
cíemency, Engíand's own man marooned hím shortíy
afterwards.
d+ard Lo+ <.ancyFGood .ortune=
Edward Low possessed an unceasíng hatred of New
Engíand and íts ínhabítants and brutaííy tortured any New
Engíanders who feeí ínto hís hands. He was ínfamous for
cuttíng one New Engíand Captaíns ears off, then makíng
hím eat them.
d+ard *each K?-ac6beardL
The embodíment of "the pírate". Teach was not an overíy
successfuí pírate but hís mastery of psychoíogícaí warfare
was superb. He was a heavy drínker, superb swordsman
and naturaí íeader of men who fínaííy feíí ín a battíe
aboard HMS Pearí, kííííng or woundíng thírty four
opponents before he fínaííy succumbed to twenty fíve
wounds he had taken. Duríng hís career he marríed
fourteen women, íed a fíeet of over four hundred man and
succeeded ín defeatíng a thírty gun frígate of the Royaí
Navy.
mmanue- 1ynne <%d,enture=
Wynn was the fírst pírate to be síghted usíng the "|oííy
roger", skuíí and crossbones, fíag off Afríca ín 1700.
Orígínaííy the |oííy roger was thought to índícate an offer
of quarter, ínvítíng a target to surrender. If they díd not
surrender quíckíy enough the |oííy roger wouíd be íowered
and repíaced wíth a red fíag, índícatíng that no mercy
wouíd be gíven.
.rancis L9'-onais <Le Mort=
L'Oíonaís hated the Spanísh and tortured any Spanísh
captíves he took. He was renowned for cuttíng open the
chests of hís captíves and puíííng out theír beatíng heart,
then bítíng chunks out of ít as other prísoners watched.
Hís greatest success was a fíve hundred man raíd on
Maracaíbo ín 1667, whích netted a quarter of a mííííon
píeces of eíght. Thís íed to a second expedítíon agaínst
Nícaragua whích was roundíy defeated and resuíted ín
L'Oíonaís beíng captured by the íocaí Indíans and síowíy
tortured death, poetíc |ustíce índeed.
.rancis S"ri##s <-i@abeth=
Francís Spríggs saííed wíth Edward Low untíí the two
quarreííed and he struck out on hís own. He was
renowned for hís crueíty and barbarítíes and was fínaííy
kíííed ín 1725 when hís shíp was run aground by a
warshíp, wíth aíí hands íost.
Geor#e Lo+ther <2an#er=
Lowther was forced ínto píracy by a tyrannícaí captaín.
The captaín caused a mutíny to occur so Lowther and
crew took to píracy, mutíny aíready beíng a capítaí
offence. For a tíme he saííed ín tandem wíth Edward Low.
He fínaííy met hís maker ín 1723 when hís shíp was
surprísed whííst careened. He and hís crew fíed ínto the
|ungíe, most were caught and hanged and he took hís own
íífe rather than face executíon.
:enry %,ery <.ancyF0u6e=
"Long Ben" Avery's pírate career began ín 1694 when he
was part of a prívateer crew whích mutíníed and turned
pírate. In 1695 he and hís crew of 160 took the Great
Moguí's 60 gun treasure shíp Gang-I-Sawaí, defeatíng íts
fíve hundred musketeers. The Moguí cíaímed a íoss of síx
hundred thousand pounds and heíd the Brítísh East Indía
company responsíbíe, makíng Avery a foík hero and
wanted crímínaí.
:o+e-- 0a,is <2o,er=
Howeíí Davís was renowned for hís sííver tongue and was
adept at gaíníng advantage through tríckery. Ironícaííy, he
met hís end ín 1719 whííst tryíng to entíce the Governor
of Hígh Cameroon onto hís shíp wíth a faíse offer of
hospítaííty. He was succeeded by Barthoíomew Roberts,
who he had pressed ínto servíce oníy a few weeks
prevíousíy.
Cohn Aue-ch <Char-es=
Oueích and crew mutíníed aboard a Brítísh prívateer (the
Charíes), fítted out to the fíght the French, and proceeded
to ransack Portuguese trade. Unfortunateíy for Oueích,
Portugaí was nomínaííy a Brítísh aííy and he was arrested
ín 1704 upon hís return to Boston to be hung wíth síx of
>3
hís crew shortíy afterwards.
Cohn 2ac6ham <%d,enture=
"Caííco |ack" was famous for hís two fíercest hands were
two ínfamous women; Anne Bonney and Mary read. They
were renowned as the fírst to board an enemy and the
íast to íeave.
Cohn *ay-or <>ictoryFCassandra=
Tayíor repíaced Edward Engíand as Captaín after the
Macrae íncídent and ís most notabíe for takíng the
dísmasted Portugese East Indíaman Nossa Senhora do
Cabo ín 1722. The Cabo was returníng from Goa wíth the
retíríng víceroy and hís personaí fortune of one mííííon
pounds ín díamonds. Needíess to say Tayíor and hís crew
retíred happííy on thís síngíe íucky break.
Le Sieur 2a,anau de Lusan <-a .oudre=
Lusan was a French arístocrat who entered píracy vía
buccaneer expedítíons agaínst the Spanísh as an escape
from gambííng debts. He was híghíy courageous and
renowned for hís cívíííty towards hís captíves.
MaBor Stede ?onnet <2e,en#eF2oya- Cames=
Bonnet was an oddíty, a gentíeman who bought hís own
ten gun síoop and híred the seventy man crew out of hís
own pocket. He feíí ín wíth Bíackbeard and íost hís shíp,
before regaíníng ít when Bíackbeard doubíed crossed hís
crew and they turned back to theír orígínaí Captaín. He
was captured ín 1718 and was noted for hís shameíess
groveíííng before the hangman.
'-i,er La ?u@e <>ictoire=
Aíso known as "the Buzzard" and Oííver ía Bouche. La
Buze was saíííng ín tandem wíth |ohn Tayíor when he took
the Cabo and he shared ín the íoot.
Peter ?-ood KCa"tain ?-oodL <%rabe--a=
Peter Bíood traíned as a doctor but ínstead became a
mercenary. He fought ín severaí wars, íearned
seamanshíp, returned to Brítaín to practíce medícíne
before beíng convícted of treason and sentenced to
síavery ín Barbados. He escaped duríng a Spanísh attack
and seízed a Spanísh shíp, turníng to píracy. After a íong
and bíoody career he ended up savíng Port Royaí from
French attack, was gíven a royaí pardon by the newíy
crowned Kíng Wííííam II and became an assístant
governor before fínaííy retíríng and marryíng the
Governors Daughter.
1i--iam Didd <%d,enture Ga--ey=
Captaín Kídd became weaíthy as a prívateer before beíng
pressured ínto actíng as a Kíngs Commíssíoner and saíííng
to the Red Sea to attack French shíppíng. After severaí
faííed attempts he was forced by hís crew to take severaí
hutch shíps then a ríchíy íaden Moorísh shíp, usíng theír
possessíon of French passes as an excuse. Upon hís
return to New York Kídd was arrested for píracy and
betrayed by the very person who had sent hím out, Lord
Beííomont, Governor of New York because he had become
a poíítícaí ííabíííty. Kídd's body was íeft to hang for many
years, earníng hím hís "fame" and hís weaíth was never
fuííy recovered, íeadíng to many storíes of buríed pírate
treasure.
A
>4
You can use the Shíp of the Líne (SOTL) to píay out shíp to shíp engagements ín Prívateers and Pírates. To do thís you need
to:
1. Determíne the equívaíent shíp, ín SOTL terms, to the shíps ín the engagement.
2. Determíne the crew quaíítíes of each shíp.
3. Determíne íf any characters aboard a shíp can act as Legendary Offícers and, íf so, are they goíng to.
Shi" *y"e
|ust fínd the appropríate shíp type on the SOTL shíp tabíe and use those Stats.
Cre+ Aua-ity
If the Fírst Mate of a pírate shíp, prívateer or warshíp has the Admínístratíon(traíníng) skííí and specíaííty theír shíps crew
can be consídered to be Veteran. If the shíp ís a merchant shíp assume the crew quaííty ís Green, or Reguíar íf the Fírst
Mate has the Admínístratíon(traíníng) skííí and specíaííty.
Le#endary 'fficer Status
A character wíth at íeast three Drama poínts and the appropríate Skííí & Specíaííty can act as a Legendary Offícer duríng a
battíe. A gíven character can oníy act as one type of Legendary Offícer ín any gíven battíe.
Le#endary 'fficer S6i-- and S"ecia-ity
Legendary Admíraí Tactícs(sea)
Legendary Captaín Tactícs(sea)
Legendary Saíííng Master Saíííng
Legendary Surgeon Heaííng(surgery)
Legendary Gunner Shootíng(gunnery)
Legendary Ouartermaster Fíghtíng and Shootíng
Legendary Artíííeríst Shootíng(gunnery)
Legendary Boatswaín Admínístratíon
>?
The foííowíng sectíon íísts a number of ma|or íocatíons whích characters may vísít from tíme to tíme. Cross reference the
startíng poínt of a |ourney and íts end to determíne the average number of days ít takes to compíete the |ourney. These
tabíes assume an average speed of fíve knots for the |ourney (average for a saíííng shíp of the day).
The entry ín brackets after each íocatíon ís the natíonaííty of that íocatíon. Where there are two entríes (separated by a
síash) the fírst (before the síash) refers to the íocatíons ownershíp ín the earíy campaígn períod and the second (after the
síash) refers to íts ownershíp ín the íate campaígn.
Shi""in# 2outes
Each tabíe represents one "campaígníng area" and each campaígníng area ís connected to the others by shíppíng routes.
To move between areas a shíp shouíd saíí to the start of a shíppíng route, then across to the end of that shíppíng route ín
another campaígníng area.
For example, if a ship wishes to sail from ?ort :oyal to /ull look up the sailing time from ?ort :oyal to 7ermuda, the sailing
time from 7ermuda to ?lymouth (the shipping route), then the sailing time from ?lymouth to /ull and add them all
together.
.rom the S"anish Main and %merica9s to Ca"e Coast or Channe- Ports
• Boston to Brístoí: 24 days
• Boston to Píymouth: 24 days
• Boston to Lísbon: 23 days
• Bermuda to Lísbon: 22½ days
• Bermuda to Brístoí: 24 days
• Bermuda to Píymouth: 23 days
• Martíníque to Cape Coast: 29 days
.rom the Channe- Ports to the Go-d Coast
• Lísbon to Cape Coast: 22 ½ days
.rom Go-d Coast or Channe- Ports to the Mediterranean
• Gíbraítar to Lísbon: 2 ½ days
• Gíbraítar to Cape Coast: 22 days
.rom Go-d Coast to the Indian 'cean
• Cape town to Cape Coast: 22 days
3.
*he S"anish Main and the %merica9s
Spanish Main and the America's
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Boston( New )ngland *British+American, -
New York( New York *British+American, . -
Charleston( Carolina *British+American, / 0 -
St. Augustine( 1lorida *S%anish+American, 23 0 . -
Hamilton( Bermuda *British, 0 0 04 5 -
Havana( Cu&a *S%anish, 224 23 64 . 74 -
Santiago( Cu&a *S%anish, 284 22 5 / 54 6 4 -
Santa Domingo( His%aniola *S%anish9, 2. 224 5 /4 54 :4 8 -
Port Royal( amaica *British, 2: 28 7 5 74 0 24 8 -
New Providence( Bahama$s *Pirate+British, 23 5 : / / . :4 :4 64 -
San uan( ;irgin <slands *S%anish, 28 224 74 23 / 5 6 :4 6 04 -
!artini"ue( =eeward <slands *1rench, 2:4 2: 284 2. 7 22 5 /4 5 74 . -
Port #$S%ain( >indward <slands *S%anish 204 20 2: 2: 22 28 54 54 5 22 6 8 -
Curacao( Dutch Antilles *Dutch, 264 26 28 224 234 74 6 64 6 54 : : .4 -
Cam%eche( Yucatan *S%anish, 2: 28 5 04 28 84 64 /4 0 28 234 2. 2: 23 -
Porto&ello( Panama *S%anish, 25 204 2. 28 2.4 5 64 0 :4 0 5 74 74 0 2 -
'ela( Honduras *S%anish, 20 2: 23 5 2: :4 0 /4 64 /4 234 2. 2. 7 .4 0 -
Cartagena( ;ene?uela *S%anish, 2/ 264 28 224 284 7 6 6 : 54 04 /4 /4 : 54 8 . -
*The Isíe of Tortuga, whích ííes |ust off the North East coast of Híspaníoía ís an índependent pírate port.
%frica and the Indian 'cean
31
Africa
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Cormantin( @old Coast AArica *Dutch, 0 8 -
Ca%e =o%e?( @old Coast AArica *Portugese, 85 / 04 -
Ca%etown( South AArica *Dutch+British,
80 88 82 25 -
*he Ca"e of Good :o"e
The Cape of Good Hope ís the Southernmost poínt of
Afríca and a dangerous stretch of waters. The
Captaín of any shíp traveíííng from Capetown to
another port ín the Indían Ocean (or více versa)
shouíd make a Saíííng check. On a crítícaí faííure
theír shíp ís wrecked and sínks ín the treacherous
waters.
Indian Ocean
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Ca%etown( South AArica *Dutch+British, -
<sle Ste.!arie( !adagascar *<nde%endent+1rench, 2/4 -
Ban?i&ar( AArica *#ttoman, 20 9 -
!ocha( Red Sea *#ttoman, .. 254 14 -
!uscat( Persian @ulA *#ttoman, ./ 21 18½ 23 -
Bom&ay( <ndia *British, .5 88 82 2: 7 -
@oa( <ndia *Portugese+British, ./4 83 834 2: 5 8 -
Severndroog <sland( <ndia *Dutch+British, .0 274 834 204 22 6 . -
*he Channe-7 Mediterranean and %t-antic Ports
32
Atlantic Ports
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Hull( )ngland *British, 2 -
=ondon( )ngland *British, 24 8 -
Dover( )ngland *British, 2 . 2 -
Portsmouth( )ngland *British, 8 : 8 -
Bristol( )ngland *British, :4 0 : :4 84 -
Plymouth( )ngland *British, . : 8 8 2 8 -
St.Helier( ersey *British, . .4 84 24 2 84 2 -
=e Havre( 1rance *1rench, 8 .4 24 2 2 . 24 2 -
Brest( 1rance *1rench, : 64 .4 .4 8 8 24 8 8 -
Bayonne( 1rance *1rench, 04 5 0 0 64 6 :4 6 64 . -
Calais( 1rance *1rench, 2 . 2 4 2 .4 8 8 2 . 6 -
=is&on( Portugal *Portugese, 7 234 54 234 / / 0 04 / 64 64 5 -
Cadi?( S%ain *S%anish, 22 284 234 22 7 7 5 5 7 /4 / 23 8 -
@i&raltar *British, 224 2. 22 224 74 74 54 54 74 5 /4 234 84 4 -
Ra&at( !orocco *Ara&ic, 22 2. 22 224 7 74 54 54 23 54 5 23 84 24 24 -
*he Mediterranean Ports
To enter the Medíterranean shíps must pass by Gíbraítar.
35
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@i&raltar *British, -
!arseilles( 1rance *1rench, 6 -
;alletta( !alta *British, 5 64 -
Algiers( Algeria *#ttoman, .4 .4 6 -
@enoa( <taly *<talian, / 24 6 : -
Na%les( <taly *<talian, 5 : 84 6 -
Palermo( <taly *<talian, /4 : 8 : .4 -
'rieste( <taly *<talian, 2: 23 0 234 7 04 0 -
Piraeus( @reece *@reek, 284 7 :4 7 5 64 6 / -
<stan&ul( 'urkey *#ttoman, 264 224 / 224 234 5 /4 7 . -
<?mir( 'urkey *#ttoman, 2.4 23 64 23 74 / 04 54 2 8 -
AleCandria( )gy%t *#ttoman+1rench, 26 224 0 224 22 54 5 23 : 0 : -
'ri%oli( =i&ya *#ttoman, 5 0 24 64 0 : . /4 6 / 04 / -
'unis( 'unisia *#ttoman, 04 : 8 . : 84 24 /4 0 54 /4 54 84 -
36
The foííowíng scenarío ís desígned to íet you píay
Prívateers and Pírates as soon as you have made up some
characters. Thís scenarío ís wrítten for the earíy campaígn
but can be píayed ín the íate campaígn usíng the changes
noted at the end.
Summary
A washed up Spanísh Captaín "Don |uan Gaííano" knows
about a secret shípment of goíd from Portobeíío to Santa
Domíngo and ís wííííng to guíde the crew íf they cut hím ín
for a share. He ís a drunkard and was díscharged from the
Spanísh Navy for beíng drunk on duty one tíme too many.
At key poínts ín the adventure he wííí be under the tabíe
and no use, forcíng the crew to ímprovíse. Hís pían can be
summarísed as foííows:
1. Saíí to a smaíí físhíng port near Portobeíío, hí|ack two
físhíng smacks.
2. Some of the crew sneak the fírst smack ínto the
harbour and capture the goíd shíp (a síoop).
3. The rest of the crew set ííght to the second smack and
head ít for the harbour as a díversíon.
4. In the ensuíng chaos sneak the fuííy íoaded goíd shíp
out of the harbour.
5. Saíí to the nearest Brítísh coíony and seíí the booty!
Com"-ication
1. The Captaín ís so drunk that when the crew gets ínto
the harbour he can't ídentífy the goíd shíp. The crew
has to ímprovíse a pían to work out whích of the three
síoops ín harbour ís the ríght one.
2. Don |uan hoíds the current Governor of Portobeíío
"Don Cortez" responsíbíe for hís dísmíssaí from the
Navy. Cortez was the offícer presídíng over the courts
marshaíí whích díscharged Don |uan.
3. The treasure shíp ís not a Spanísh natíonaí shíp, ít ís
actuaííy the personaí, and secret weaíth of Don Cortez.
If the crew steaís ít Cortez wííí píace a personaí bounty
on theír heads and the crew wííí ííkeíy have to deaí
wíth the consequences ín future adventures.
:iBac6
Hí|ackíng the two físhíng smacks ís faíríy easy. The crew
can eíther capture one or both at sea, or saíí cíose to the
víííage then send a íandíng party ín to capture the
vesseís. The físhermen vaíue theír ííves more than theír
shíps and wííí surrender íf they are cíearíy outnumbered.
Mas!uerade
The crew have to saíí theír smack ínto Portobeíío harbour,
masqueradíng as Spanísh físhermen. Fírst and foremost
they need at íeast one person who has Spanísh as a
quaíífíed skííí to act as a spokesperson. Don |uan
obvíousíy speaks Spanísh but the cíoser they get to
Portobeíío the drunker he gets. If the characters stop hím
drínkíng he gets more and more suríy and uncooperatíve.
To make thíngs ínterestíng, the físhíng smack wííí be
haííed by one of the patroíííng gunboats when ít comes
ínto the harbour and the characters wííí have to bíuff theír
way past. Basícaííy the Spanísh speaker needs to make an
Infíuence or Dísguíse check to come across convíncíngíy,
íf they faíí the gunboat crew are suspícíous but íet them
pass. The mííítía are aíerted and wííí keep an eye on the
crew when they have docked, any unusuaí behavíour wííí
be responded to quíckíy.
If they crítícaí faíí the gunboat crew ís aíerted and wííí
open fíre.
*he *reasure Shi"
The síoop ís worth seventeen thousand pounds and íts
goíden hoard ís worth another fífty thousand pounds!
Identifyin# the shi"
There are three síoops on the docksíde. The píayer
characters must ídentífy whích ís the treasure shíp. How
the characters handíe thís depends on the píayers, but
some possíbíe methods míght íncíude:
• Snea6in# aboard and chec6in# the ho-ds4
Requíres a Steaíth(urban) check for each shíp, to
check the hoíd wíthout detectíon. A faííed check aíerts
the watch on the shíp beíng checked and the
character must eíther fíee or fíght.
• %s6in# around the ta,erns4 Requíres an
Infíuence(gossíp) check to ídentífy the shíp correctíy. A
crítícaí faííure means someone becomes suspícíous
and aíerts the mííítía who start íookíng for the
characters.
If the crew faííed theír Dísguíse or Infíuence check when
confronted by the gunboat earííer the mííítía wííí be
foííowíng them, makíng eíther of the above actíons more
díffícuít (-10 on the checks).
*a6in# the treasure shi"
Once the crew have ídentífíed the correct shíp they must
sneak aboard, dísabíe the watchmen and any crew
aboard, then set saíí.
*he :arbour
There are two gunboats on patroí ín the harbour at any
gíven tíme. A successfuí Saíííng check íets the heímsman
of the treasure shíp sííp out undetected by níght, but íf
they faíí the gunboats wííí engage. It takes four shíp
rounds for reínforcements to mobíííse themseíves from
the docksíde, those reínforcements beíng two more fuííy
crewed gunboats.
Any shíp maneuveríng ín the harbour has a -20 to theír
Saíííng check each round to refíect the reíatíveíy confíned
space and shaííow waters. A shíp whích succeeds on íts
Saíííng check may íeave the harbour ín that round, but
cannot fíre on any vesseís ín the same round as íeavíng
the harbour. Shíps ín the harbour cannot attack shíps
outsíde the harbour.
Portobe--o
The town ís arranged ín the form of a haíf moon, wíth the
two poínts, aímíng East and West. The buík of the town ís
íocated ín the centre of the crescent. From the Píaza de ía
Mar (ín the centre), there are two streets goíng to the
Castííío Santíago. Another road íeads from the Píaza de ía
Mar up ínto the mountaíns. Fírst ít crosses a smaíí brídge
over a creek (descendíng from the mountaíns) and then to
another píaza about one hundred yards from the Píaza de
ía Mar.
The town ís roughíy fíve hundred yards "íong" wíth many
cross streets. In the town, there are about 50 houses, a
cathedraí, the Convent of Mercy, a hospítaí, and the Kíngs
houses on the Píaza de ía Mar. The Cíty Government
houses, (Eí Cabíído), are íocated on the second píaza.
Portobeíío consísts of four dístrícts;
• Tríana, where the poor Spaníards, and the Kíngs
síaves ííve.
• Merceds, where the weíí to do cítízens ííve.
• Guínea, the resídence of the free Negros.
• Shanty town, around 30-40 huts made of cane
and straw, ínhabíted by peasants
Most of the homes (outsíde Shanty town) are constructed
3=
of wood, wíth stone footers. Some are two-storíes and
some have gíass wíndows, and tííe roofs. Better off
índívíduaís prefer stone buíídíngs to wood, assocíatíng
wood wíth íííness and dísease (due to the proxímíty of the
thíck |ungíe whích encírcíes the town).
There are aíso some government warehouses, whích are
generaííy stone buíít.
It ís aíso ímportant to note the weather. Beíng ín the
tropícs ít raíns vírtuaííy every day, aíthough the months of
|anuary to Apríí (the dry season) are sííghtíy more
toíerabíe.
The town ís surrounded by |ungíe to íandward and has
oníy one ma|or roadway ínto ít, from panama. Garrísons
are íocated throughout the town and around 300 soídíers
(totaí) are íocated ín the town garrísons.
From a pírates poínt of víew, the most ímportant thíng ín
Porto Beíío ís the Kíngs Treasure House, a massíveíy
fortífíed buíídíng where royaí funds are heíd (typícaííy ten
thousand ducats or more).
Portobeíío harbour ís around 3km ín íength, 17 fathoms
deep ín the centre, droppíng to around 7 fathoms next to
the town, so even the íargest shíps can easííy moor up on
the dock at the town for offíoadíng. Three castíes protect
the anchorage.
• Castííío de San Feíípe (35 cannons, 50 soídíers)
• Castííío Santíago (5 cannons, 30 soídíers)
• Castííío de San |eronímo (5 cannons, 30 soídíers)
The castíes are made of 3m thíck coraí waíís, nígh on
índestructíbíe.
At a push, the harbour has room for 300 gaííeons and a
1000 smaííer shíps to anchor up safeíy, and another 2000
smaííer shíp couíd moor up outsíde the protectíon of the
forts.
*he Chase to Port 2oya-
Once the crew has escaped any battíe at Portobeíío they
must saíí back to the nearest pírate or Brítísh port (most
ííkeíy Port Royaí). Make a normaí roíí to traveí the
dístance, except that any warshíp resuít wííí be Spanísh
shíps huntíng for the stoíen treasure shíp.
Chan#es for the Late Cam"ai#n
If you want to use thís scenarío ín a íate campaígn make
the foííowíng changes:
• Actíon moves to the Channeí Area.
• Crew's home port ís St. Heííer (Channeí Isíands).
• The French repíace the Spanísh as the bad guys (aíí
game stats remaín the same though).
• The target port ís St.Nazaíre rather than Portobeíío.
Portobe--o :arbour Ma"
On the map beíow aíí íand areas are covered ín thíck |ungíe. Movement through thíck |ungíe ís at about one mííe per hour,
or síower ín heavy raín. The Laguna Grande ís a shaííow fresh water íagoon, oníy navígabíe by boats and smaíí craft.
Cast of Characters
5ame Don |uan Gaííano Typícaí Spanísh Mííítía Typícaí Saííor
Gender Maíe Maíe Maíe
%#e 52 varíes varíes
0rama 2 0 0
3>
S6i--s E
S"ecia-ities
Fíghtíng, Art, Gamíng, Infíuence, Musíc, Saíííng,
Connectíons, Navígatíon, Sígnaíííng, Tactícs,
Admínístratíon
Fíghtíng, Heaíth, Shootíng
(Offícers have Tactícs as weíí)
Heaíth, Athíetícs,
Saíííng
.-a+s Addíct (aícohoí) - -
0escri"tion Drunkard, dírty cíothes, fouí breath Moustachíoed, síícked back haír Staggeríng around
!ui"ment Cheap oíd fííntíock pístoí (M, ENC 5, £1½,
15/60).
Sword (M, ENC 10)
Totaí ENC 15
Musket (H, ENC 15, £2½, 5/200)
Sword (M, ENC 10)
Totaí ENC 25
Dagger (L, ENC 5, 4s)
Totaí ENC 5
Drunken Saííors: Any Saííors met on the waterfront at Portobeíío after níghtfaíí are aímost certaíníy ínebríated, wíth a -10 to
aíí checks.
.ishin# Smac6 Go-d Shi" <S-oo"= Portobe--o Gunboat
MS 50 40 30
Cre+ 10 100 20
Guns - 16 8
33
,ppendi& Four , sea grammar
Thís píece of work ís the thírteenth chapter of the 1627 book "A Sea Grammar, wíth the Píaíne Exposítíon of Smíths
Accídence for young Sea-men, eníarged. Dívíded ínto fífteene Chapters: what they are you may partíy conceíve by the
Contents. Wrítten by Captaíne Iohn Smíth, sometímes Governour of Vírgínía, and Admíraí of New-Engíand"
It ís presented here to gíve a generaí reference for píayers and the GM as to how conduct themseíves whííst roíepíayíng ín
an earíy campaígn, and to add períod fíavour.
&o' to manage a (igt at Sea) 'it te p!ope! tea!mes in a (igt la!gely exp!essed) and te
o!de!ing o( a Na%y at Sea*
0any bookes
of the 6rt of
>ar for the
land, none for
the sea.
For thís master peece of thís worke, I confesse I míght doe better to íeave ít to evry partícuíar mans
conceít as ít ís, or those of íonger practíce or more experíence, yet because I have seene many bookes
of the Art of Warre byíand, and never any for the Sea, seeíng aíí men so sííent ín thís most díffícuít
servíce, and there are so many young Captaínes, and others that desíre to be Captaíns, who know very
ííttíe, or nothíng at aíí to any purpose, fo theír better understandíng I haue proceeded thus farre; now for
thís that foííowes, what I haue seene, done, and conceíved by my smaíí experíence, I referre me to theír
fríendíy constructíons, and weíí advísed consíderatíons.
A saííe, how beares she or stands shee, to wínd-ward or íee-ward, set hím by the Compasse; he stands
ríght ahead, or on the weather-Bow, or íee-Bow, íet fííe your coíours íf you have a consort, eíse not. Out
wíth aíí your saííes, a steady man to the heíme, sít cíose to keepe her steady, gíue hím chase or fetch
hím up;
To gíuve chase. hee hoíds hís owne, no, we gather on hím. Captaíne, out goes hís fíag and pendants, aíso hís waste
cíothes and top armíngs,
Wast cíothes.
Top armíngs.
whích ís a íong red cíoth about three quarters of a yard broad, edged on each síde wíth Caííco or whíte
íínnen cíoth, that goeth round about the shíp on the out sídes of aíí her upper workes fore and aft, and
before the cubbrídge heads, aíso about the fore and |page |2:60| maíne tops, as weíí for the
countenance and grace of the shíp, as to couer men from beíng seene, hee furíes and sííngs hís maíne
yard, ín goes hís spret-saííe.
Fíghtíng saííes.
To haíe a shíp.
Thus they use to stríp themseíues ínto theír short saííes, or fíghtíng saííes, whích ís oneíy the fore saííe,
the maíne and fore top saííes, because the rest shouíd not be fíred nor spoííed; besídes they wouíd be
troubíesome to handíe, hínder our fíghts and the usíng our armes; he makes ready hís cíose fíghts fore
and aft.
How to begín a
fíght.
Master how stands the chase? Ríght on head I say; Weíí we shaíí reach hím by and by; What's aíí ready,
Yea, yea, every man to hís charge, dowse your top-saííe to saíute hím for the Sea, haíe hím wíth a noíse
of trumpets; Whence ís your shíp? Of Spaine; Whence ís yours? Of @ngland; Are you a Merchant, or a
man of War? We are of the Sea; He waves us to íee-ward wíth hís drawne sword, caís amaíne for the
Kíng of Spaine, and spríngs hís íouse, gíue hím a chase peece wíth your broad síde, and run a good
berth ahead of hím; Done, done, We have the wínd of hím, and he tackes about, tacke you about aíso
and keepe your íouse, be yare at the heíme, edge ín wíth hím, gíve hím a voííey of smaíí shot, aíso your
prow and broad síde as before, and keepe your íouse; Hee payes vs shot for shot; Weíí, wee shaíí
requíre hím; What are you ready agaíne, Yea, yea. Try hím once more as before, Done, done; Keepe
your íouse and íoge your ordnance agaíne; Is aíí ready? Yea, yea; edge ín ín |sic| wíth hím agaíne, begín
wíth your bow peeces, proceed wíth your broad síde, & íet her faíí off wíth the wínd, to gíve her aíso
your fuíí chase, your weather broad síde, and bríng her round that the sterne may aíso díscharge, and
your tackes cíose aboord agaíne; Done, done, the wínd veeres, the Sea goes too hígh to boord her, and
wee are shot thorow and thorow, and betweene wínd and water. Try the pump, beare up the heíme,
Master íet vs breathe and refresh a ííttíe, and sííng a man ouer boord to stop the íeakes;
How to sííng a
man ouer
boord.
that ís to trusse hím up about the míddíe ín a peece of canvas, and a rope to keepe hím from sínkíng,
and hís armes at ííberty, wíth a maíet ín the one hand, & a píug íapped ín Oakum, and |page I3:61| weíí
tarred ín a tarpawííng cíout ín the other, whích he wííí quíckíy beat ínto the hoíe or hoíes the buííets
made; What cheere mates, ís aíí weíí? Aíí weíí, aíí weíí, aíí weíí; Then make ready to beare up wíth hím
agaíne, and wíthaíí your great and smaíí shot charge hím, and ín the smoke boord hím twart the hawse,
on the bow, míd shíps, or rather then saííe, on hís quarter, or make fast your grapííngs íf you can to hís
cíose fíghts and sheare off. Captaíne we are fowíe on each other, and the shíp ís on fíre, cut any thíng to
get cíeare, and smother the fíre wíth wet cíoathes. In such a case they wííí presentíy be such fríends, as
to heíp one the other aíí they can to get cíeare, íest they both shouíd burne together and sínke; and íf
they be generous, the fíre quenched, drínke kíndíey one to another; heave theír cans over boord, and
then begín agaíne as before.
A consuítatíon
& dírectíon ín a
sea fíght, &
how they bury
theír dead.
Weíí Master, the day spent, the níght drawes on, íet us consuít. Chírurgíon íooke to the wounded, and
wínde up the síaíne, wíth each a weíght or buííet at theír heads and feet to make them sínke, and gíve
them three gunnes for theír funeraís, Swabber make cíeane the shíp, Purser record theír Names, Watch
be vígííant to keepe your berth to wínd ward that we íose hím not ín the níght, Gunners spunge your
Ordnance, Souídíers scowre your peeces, Carpenters about your íeakes, Boatswaíne and the rest repaíre
the saííes and shrouds, and Cooke see you observe your dírectíons agaínst the morníng watch, Boy,
Hoíía Master Hoíía, ís the kettíe boííed, yea, yea, Boatswaíne caíí vp the men to prayer and breake fast.
34
A preparatíon
for a fresh
charge
Boy fetch my ceííar of bottíes, a heaíth to you aíí fore and aft, courage my hearts for a fresh charge,
Gunners beat open the ports, and out wíth your íower tíre, and bríng me from the weather síde to the
íee, so many peeces as we have ports to beare upon hím, Master íay hím aboord íouse for íouse,
mídshíps men see the tops and yards weíí manned, wíth stones, fíre pots, and brasse baííes, to throw
amongst them before we enter, or íf we be put off, charge them wíth aíí your great and smaíí shot, ín the
smoke íet vs enter |page I3:62| them ín the shrouds, and evry squadron at hís best advantage, so sound
Drums and Trumpets, and Saínt 3eorge for Engíand.
How a príse
doth yeeíd, and
how to
entertaíne hím
Sea-man ííke.
They hang out a fíag of truce, haíe hím a maíne, a base, or take ín hís fíag, stríke theír saííes and come
aboord wíth theír Captaíne, Purser and Gunner, wíth ther commíssíon, cocket, or bíís of íadíng. Out goes
the boat, they are íanched from the shíp síde, entertaíne them wíth a generaíí cry, God save the
Captaíne and aíí the company wíth the Trumpets soundíng, examíne them ín partícuíar, and then
concíude your condítíons, wíth feastíng, freedome, or puníshment, as you fínde occasíon; but aíwayes
have as much care to theír wounded as your owne, and íf there be eíther young women or aged men,
use them nobíy, whích ís ever the nature of a generous dísposítíon. To concíude, íf you surpríze hím, or
enter perforce, you may stow the men, rífíe, píííage, or sacke, and cry a príze.
How to caíí a
Counceíí of
War, and order
a Nauy at Seat.
To caíí a Counceíí of Warre to manage aíí busínesses of ímport, and the common Counceíí for matters of
smaíí moment, when they wouíd have a meetíng, where the Admíraíí doth appoínt ít; íf ín the Admíraíí,
they hang out a fíag ín the maíne shrouds; íf ín the Více Admíraíí, ín the fore shrouds; íf ín the Reare
Admíraíí, ín the mízen; If there bee many squadrons, the sic| ís to beare hís fíag ín the maíne top, ín the
presence of the Admíraíí generaíí, except the Admíraíí come aboard of híme to Counceíí, to dínner, or
coííatíon, and so any shíp eíse where he so resídeth duríng that tíme, ís to weare hís fíag ín the maíne
top. they use to martíaíí or order those squadrons ín rankes ííke Manapíes, whích ís foure square, íf the
wínd and Sea permíts, a good berth or dístance from |page I:63| each other, that they becaíme not one
another, nor come not fowíe of each other; the Generaíí commoníy ín the míddest, hís Více Admíraíí ín
the front, and hís Reare Admíraíí ín the Reare; or otherwíse ííke a haífe Moone, whích ís two squadrons
ííke two tríangíes for the two hornes, and so the rest of the squadrons behínd each other a good
dístance, and the Generaíí ín the míddest of the haíf círcíe, from whence he seeth aíí hís fíeet, and
sendeth hís dírectíons, as he fíndes occasíon to whom he píeaseth.
Stratagems for
Sea-men.
Now betweene two Navíes they use often, especíaííy ín a harbour or road where they are at anchor, to
fííí oíd Barkes wíth pítch, tar, traíne oííe, ííncet oííe, brímstone, rosen, reeds, wíth dry wood, and such
combustíbíe thíngs, sometímes they íínke three or foure together ín the níght, and puts them adríft as
they fínde occasíon. To passe a fort some wííí make both shíp and saííes aíí bíack, but íf the fort keepe
but a fíre on the other síde, and aíí the píeces poínt bíanke wíth the fíre, íf they díscharge what ís
betwíxt them and the fíre, the shot wííí hít íf the ruíe bee truíy observed; for when a shíp ís betwíxt the
fíre and you, shee doth keeepe |sic| you from seeíng ít tííí shee bee past ít. To concíude, there ís as
many stratagems, advantages, and íntentíons to be used as you fínde occasíons, and therefore
experíence must be the best Tutor.
3?
,ppendi& Five 1333 8ode Duello
The Code Dueíío, coveríng the practíce of dueíííng and poínts of honour, was drawn up and settíed at Cíonmeí Summer
Assízes, 1777, by gentíemen-deíegates of Típperary, Gaíway, Síígo, Mayo and Roscommon, and prescríbed for generaí
adoptíon throughout Ireíand. The Code was generaííy aíso foííowed ín Engíand and on the Contínent wíth some sííght
varíatíons. In Ameríca, the príncípaí ruíes were foííowed, aíthough occasíonaííy there were some gíaríng devíatíons.
2u-e 1. The fírst offence requíres the fírst apoíogy, though the retort may have been more offensíve than the ínsuít.
Exampíe: A teíís B he ís ímpertínent, etc. B retorts that he ííes; yet A must make the fírst apoíogy because he gave the fírst
offence, and then (after one fíre) B may expíaín away the retort by a subsequent apoíogy.
2u-e 2. But íf the partíes wouíd rather fíght on, then after two shots each (but ín no case before), B may expíaín fírst, and A
apoíogíze afterward.
N.B. The above ruíes appíy to aíí cases of offences ín retort not of stronger cíass than the exampíe.
2u-e 3. If a doubt exíst who gave the fírst offence, the decísíon rests wíth the seconds; íf they won't decíde, or can't agree,
the matter must proceed to two shots, or to a hít, íf the chaííenger requíre ít.
2u-e G. When the ííe dírect ís the fírst offence, the aggressor must eíther beg pardon ín express terms; exchange two shots
prevíous to apoíogy; or three shots foííowed up by expíanatíon; or fíre on tííí a severe hít be receíved by one party or the
other.
2u-e 5. As a bíow ís stríctíy prohíbíted under any círcumstances among gentíemen, no verbaí apoíogy can be receíved for
such an ínsuít. The aíternatíves, therefore -- the offender handíng a cane to the ín|ured party, to be used on hís own back,
at the same tíme beggíng pardon; fíríng on untíí one or both are dísabíed; or exchangíng three shots, and then askíng
pardon wíthout proffer of the cane.
If swords are used, the partíes engage untíí one ís weíí bíooded, dísabíed, or dísarmed; or untíí, after receívíng a wound,
and bíood beíng drawn, the aggressor begs pardon.
N.B. A dísarm ís consídered the same as a dísabíe. The dísarmer may (stríctíy) break hís adversary's sword; but íf ít be the
chaííenger who ís dísarmed, ít ís consídered as ungenerous to do so.
In the case the chaííenged be dísarmed and refuses to ask pardon or atone, he must not be kíííed, as formeríy; but the
chaííenger may íay hís own sword on the aggressor's shouíder, then break the aggressor's sword and say, "I spare your
íífe!" The chaííenged can never revíve the quarreí -- the chaííenger may.
2u-e $. If A gíves B the ííe, and B retorts by a bíow (beíng the two greatest offences), no reconcíííatíon can take píace tííí
after two díscharges each, or a severe hít; after whích B may beg A's pardon humbíy for the bíow and then A may expíaín
símpíy for the ííe; because a bíow ís never aííowabíe, and the offence of the ííe, therefore, merges ín ít. (See precedíng
ruíes.)
N.B. Chaííenges for undívuíged causes may be reconcííed on the ground, after one shot. An expíanatíon or the sííghtest hít
shouíd be suffícíent ín such cases, because no personaí offence transpíred.
2u-e 7. But no apoíogy can be receíved, ín any case, after the partíes have actuaííy taken ground, wíthout exchange of
fíres.
2u-e /. In the above case, no chaííenger ís obííged to dívuíge hís cause of chaííenge (íf prívate) uníess requíred by the
chaííenged so to do before theír meetíng.
2u-e ). Aíí ímputatíons of cheatíng at píay, races, etc., to be consídered equívaíent to a bíow; but may be reconcííed after
one shot, on admíttíng theír faísehood and beggíng pardon pubíícíy.
2u-e 10. Any ínsuít to a íady under a gentíeman's care or protectíon to be consídered as, by one degree, a greater offence
than íf gíven to the gentíeman personaííy, and to be reguíated accordíngíy.
2u-e 11. Offences orígínatíng or accruíng from the support of íadíes' reputatíons, to be consídered as íess un|ustífíabíe
than any others of the same cíass, and as admíttíng of sííghter apoíogíes by the aggressor: thís to be determíned by the
círcumstances of the case, but aíways favourabíe to the íady.
2u-e 12. In símpíe, unpremedítated recontres wíth the smaíísword, or couteau de chasse, the ruíe ís -- fírst draw, fírst
sheath, uníess bíood ís drawn; then both sheath, and proceed to ínvestígatíon.
2u-e 13. No dumb shootíng or fíríng ín the aír ís admíssíbíe ín any case. The chaííenger ought not to have chaííenged
wíthout receívíng offence; and the chaííenged ought, íf he gave offence, to have made an apoíogy before he came on the
ground; therefore, chíídren's píay must be díshonourabíe on one síde or the other, and ís accordíngíy prohíbíted.
2u-e 1G. Seconds to be of equaí rank ín socíety wíth the príncípaís they attend, ínasmuch as a second may eíther choose
4.
or chance to become a príncípaí, and equaííty ís índíspensabíe
2u-e 15. Chaííenges are never to be deíívered at níght, uníess the party to be chaííenged íntend íeavíng the píace of
offence before morníng; for ít ís desírabíe to avoíd aíí hot-headed proceedíngs.
2u-e 1$. The chaííenged has the ríght to choose hís own weapon, uníess the chaííenger gíves hís honour he ís no
swordsman; after whích, however, he can decííne any second specíes of weapon proposed by the chaííenged.
2u-e 17. The chaííenged chooses hís ground; the chaííenger chooses hís dístance; the seconds fíx the tíme and terms of
fíríng.
2u-e 1/. The seconds íoad ín presence of each other, uníess they gíve theír mutuaí honours they have charged smooth
and síngíe, whích shouíd be heíd suffícíent.
2u-e 1). Fíríng may be reguíated -- fírst by sígnaí; secondíy, by word of command; or thírdíy, at píeasure -- as may be
agreeabíe to the partíes. In the íatter case, the partíes may fíre at theír reasonabíe íeísure, but second presents and rests
are stríctíy prohíbíted.
2u-e 20. In aíí cases a míss-fíre ís equívaíent to a shot, and a snap or non-cock ís to be consídered as a míss-fíre.
2u-e 21. Seconds are bound to attempt a reconcíííatíon before the meetíng takes píace, or after suffícíent fíríng or híts, as
specífíed.
2u-e 22. Any wound suffícíent to agítate the nerves and necessarííy make the hand shake, must end the busíness for that
day.
2u-e 23. If the cause of the meetíng be of such a nature that no apoíogy or expíanatíon can or wííí be receíved, the
chaííenged takes hís ground, and caíís on the chaííenger to proceed as he chooses; ín such cases, fíríng at píeasure ís the
usuaí practíce, but may be varíed by agreement.
2u-e 2G. In sííght cases, the second hands hís príncípaí but one pístoí; but ín gross cases, two, hoídíng another case ready
charged ín reserve.
2u-e 25. Where seconds dísagree, and resoíve to exchange shots themseíves, ít must be at the same tíme and at ríght
angíes wíth theír príncípaís, thus:
If wíth swords, síde by síde, wíth fíve paces íntervaí.
N.B. Aíí matters and doubts not hereín mentíoned wííí be expíaíned and cíeared up by appíícatíon to the commíttee, who
meet aíternateíy at Cíonmeí and Gaíway, at the quarter sessíons, for that purpose.
41
%-"habetica- Inde&
Anímaís................................ 13
Armour Líst........................... 57
Attacks................................. 32
Bíackpowder Guns................ 58
Boardíng............................... 41
Boatswaín............................. 43
Bomb vesseís....................... 39
Bows..................................... 57
Captaín................................. 43
Carpenter............................. 43
Chaínshot............................. 41
Character Concepts.............. 22
Characters ín mass combat.. 36
Chases.................................. 13
Common Ob|ects.................. 14
Críme.................................... 48
Crítícaí Faííures....................... 8
Crítícaí Híts........................... 32
Crítícaí Successes................... 8
Cutters................................. 39
Damage Codes....................... 8
Defauít Díffícuíty.................... 7
Dueíííng................................ 35
Dutch Fíeut........................... 39
East Indíaman.......................39
Eíectíon of Offícers............... 43
Expíosíves............................ 58
Fatígue................................. 11
Fífth Rate.............................. 39
Fírst Mate............................. 43
Fírst Rate.............................. 38
Fourth Rate.......................... 38
Gaííeon................................. 39
Gaííey................................... 39
Gríevous Wound..................... 9
Gunboats.............................. 39
Home Port............................ 23
Languages............................ 12
Maríne.................................. 44
Master Gunner...................... 43
Mate..................................... 43
Meíee Weapons.................... 57
Merchant Carríers................. 39
Modífíers................................. 7
Money.................................. 54
Natíonaííty............................ 22
Openíng Locks...................... 13
Opposed checks..................... 7
Pay....................................... 54
Pírate...................................... 2
Pístoí Dueís........................... 35
Prívateer................................. 2
Príze Money.......................... 42
Príze Money, Dívísíon of .......42
Puníshment.......................... 48
Ouartermaster...................... 43
Retreat & Surrender............. 36
Rounds................................. 31
Saíííng Master....................... 43
Saííor.................................... 43
Scenarío................................. 4
Scurvy.................................. 46
Second Mate.........................43
Second Rate......................... 38
Shíp Cost.............................. 38
Shíps Charter........................ 48
Síxth Rate............................. 39
Síoop.................................... 39
Suffocatíon........................... 11
Sword Dueís......................... 35
Thírd Rate............................. 38
Treacherous Waters............. 41
Tryíng Agaín........................... 7
Turns.................................... 31
Vehícíes................................ 13
Workíng together................... 7
42
Useful Summaries
Rolling Dice
When you attempt a task roll two ten sided dice and read
them as a number from 01 (one) to 00 (one hundred), one
dice being read as tens and the other as units.
• If you don't hae the skill needed for the task
read the lowest of the two dice as the tens alue.
• If you hae the skill state which of the two dice
will be the tens alue before rolling.
• If you hae the speciality needed for the task
read the highest of the two dice as the tens
alue.
!o succeed you must roll greater than or e"ual to the
#ifficulty (#I$$) number assigned to the task by the %&. '
success with a roll of doubles is a critical success and a
failure with a roll of doubles is a critical failure.
Character Creation Summary
(ou'll find a character sheet on the last page of the book.
1. )tart by deciding on your characters concept,
write this down on the character sheet where it
says *+oncept,.
-. .e/t gie your character a name, choose a social
class, military rank (if you wish to hae sered in
the military), nationality and religion and decide
on their 'ge. Write these down in the
appropriate places on the sheet.
0. .e/t, choose a number of skills and specialities
e"ual to twice the tens alue of your 'ge and
circle them on the character sheet (note that to
take a speciality you must already hae the skill
it is grouped under).
1. (ou may choose one or more $laws. +ircle the
flaws you choose to take (if any).
2. &ake up a number of distinguishing features
e"ual to the tens alue of your 'ge.
3. (our starting #rama point score e"uals the
number of $laws taken plus three if you are
Working class, two if &iddle class and one if
4pper class. Write this down in the appropriate
place.
5. (ou start with no wounds, no 67 and no
adances.
8. If you are Working class you begin play with
d100 )hillings (read the highest dice as tens).
9. If you are &iddle class you begin play with d100
pounds (read the highest dice as tens).
10. If you are 4pper class you begin play with d100
/-0 pounds (read the highest dice as tens).
11. !his roll is how many pounds (in cash) you begin
play with. !his can be spent to buy e"uipment
and weapons before play starts.
Character Improvement
:etween game sessions you may spend 67 to improe
your character. (our first adance costs 1067, second
costs -067, third costs 0067 and so on.
When you adance, spend the re"uired 67 and increase
the number in the 'dances section of the sheet by one
(so you hae a record of how many adances you hae
had).
Combat Summary
1. 't the start of a battle eery character makes an
'gility(initiatie) roll.
-. !he character with the highest roll acts first each
round, working downwards.
0. ;n your turn you may moe and perform an
action, or hold your turn. (ou may use a held
turn at any time before the start of your ne/t
turn, but can only moe or perform an action in
a held turn, not both.
1. If you attack make an appropriate roll to hit. $or
a melee attack the #I$$ is based on the targets
&elee skills and specialities. $or a ranged attack
the #I$$ is based on how much coer the target
has.
2. If you hit, the damage is figured from the attack
roll. <ffectie armour steps damage type down
one leel and a critical hit (successful hit with a
roll of doubles) steps damage type up one leel.
3. ' miss with a roll of doubles is a critical failure,
which results in something bad happening.
5. +haracters who are hit must make #amage
checks immediately.
8. ;nce eery character has taken a turn in a round
(or held their turn) a new round starts.
Damage Checks
1. Wheneer a character is hurt they must make a
#amage check.
-. !his is a =ealth(resilience) roll.
0. !he #I$$ e"uals the total of all the characters
current wounds. $ailure results in incapacitation
for ten minutes or one hour if you failed with a
roll of doubles.
1. If you fail and roll less than or e"ual to the worst
single wound you hae, you are incapacitated
and dying. If not treated in ten minutes you die
from blood loss.
2. If you fail and roll doubles which are less than or
e"ual to the worst single wound you hae, you
die instantly.
Healing
1. Wounds heal at a rate of one point per wound
per day (two points if the entire preious day
was spent resting).
-. $irst 'id re"uires a =ealing(first aid) check, the
#I$$ is the alue of the wound being worked on.
)uccess hales the alue of that wound. ' gien
wound can only be reduced in this way once.
0. If a character suries a dying situation they
must roll on the grieous wound table.
Drama Points
#rama points can be spent to>
• 'dd fifty to a roll (spend the point before or after
rolling).
• )ubtract fifty from a roll someone else ?ust made
(spend the point before or after they roll).
• 7erform an action at any time.
#rama points spent in any of these ways are recoered at
the start of each new day.
(ou can also sacrifice drama points to *cheat death,.
#oing this negates an eent which would otherwise hae
killed the character. .ote that this does not count as
suriing a dying situation, so no roll on the grieous
wound table is needed. 7oints sacrificed in this way are
not recoered and must be bought back using adances.
!his page may be freely reproduced for personal use only.
Name Gender
Concept
Age Religion
Nationality Social Class
Drama Points Military Rank
Current XP Advances
Distinguishing Features Current ounds
c
Skills and Specialities
Brawn Archery Gaming Knowledge !a"
• Dra"n #o" • Cards • Criminal
Athletics • Cross#o" • $etting Administration • Civil
• S"imming • • Dice • Accounting Navigation
• %umping Shooting &n'luence • Management • Sea
• Clim#ing • (andguns • Persuasion • )raining • !and
• Ro"ing • !ongarms • Seduction Connections Science
Fighting • Gunnery • &ntimidation • Criminal • Chemistry
• $ra"ling Stealth • Disguise • Military • Physics
• Dagger • *r#an Music • $usiness • $iology
• S"ord • Rural • $rass • Society • Geology
• A+e • ild • Stringed • Political Signalling
• $lunt )hro"ing • Percussion Cra'ting • !amp
• Spear • $alanced • ind • Carpentry • Semaphore
(ealth • *n#alanced • Piano • Masonry • Codes
• Constitution Notice • )ailoring Smithing
• ,ndurance Wits • Sea • !eather"orking • $lacksmithing
• Resilience • ilderness • Pottery • Arti'ice
• Strength Animal (andling • Rural ,ngineering • S"ordsmithing
• Grappling • Riding • *r#an • Ship"right • Gunsmithing
• Driving Sailing • Structural • !ocksmithing
Reflexes • (us#andry • Sea • Demolitions Survival
Art • Coastal • Gunnery • )emperate
Agility • Dra"ing • Piracy (ealing • )ropical
• Dodge • Painting ill • Surgery • Polar
• $alance • Sculpture • Resistance • First Aid • Desert
• Dance • riting • $ravery (umanities • Mountains
• Running • Musical Composition • Geography )actics
• &nitiative • (istory • Sea
• Current A''airs • !and
• Philosophy • $oarding
Flaws
Addict Compassionate Dri'ter Grim (aunted (onoura#le !one ol' Pariah Reputation Sick
$erserker Co"ard Focussed Guilt (eroic %in+ed !usty Rage Sel'ish Spendthri't
$lood thirsty Doomed Forget'ul (ar#inger (onest !iar Mad Dog Reluctant Shakes anted
b
Equipment (ENC
Weapon (ENC !amage Range Notes
)his page may #e 'reely reproduced 'or personal use only-
FJGaming FJG005
“Ahoy there me hearties!”
Privateers and Pirates is a role
playing game set in the Age of
Sail. Characters are the crews of
pirates or privateers, out to sail
the seven seas, get rich and
hopefully retire to a comfortable
berth.