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(aka Hordes of the Nautical Things ) A variant/expansion for Hordes of the Things for recreating large but indeterminate scale fantasy naval battles. By Martin Costa
(A joint production of Crustacium games and Obsessive Game designers Workshop)
Original draft date 10/1/00 Current draft date 10/9/00 Version 0.21
Material from Hordes of the Things (including unit names and play mechanics) and Classis by Dan varelli are used without permission, and such use is in no way intended as a challenge to ownership. Except as above, all material copyright 2000, M Martin Costa; This is a playtest copy - please do not distribute electronically unless approved by the author.
Introduction I've long been a nautical geek - just ask any of my friends, parents, wife, acquaintances, fellow worthless gamers or SCA types. I'm also a _BIG_ HOTT/DBA geek. Ask most of the same group. Take a lunch. Anyway, I've always wanted to do a set of multi-period nautical fast play rules - Dan Varelli inspired me by developing a fine set of DBx style rules for the classical period, and some of his ideas have doubtless contributed to this product (thanks !). My problem has always been the result of my mavenry - i.e. worries such as "should a Venetii type classical ship and a cog factor out the same given the former's lack of a keel ? " or "did the battle of espagnol-sur-mer demonstrate the inferiority of carvel built ships over clinker built ships in a pre gunpowder situation involving ramming" or even " how do you easily model the effects of wind bearing on classical sailing ships compared to post Napoleonic sloops". and etc. Luckily, the format of HOTT allowed me to turn a blind eye to anachronisms, and concentrate on effects of various ship designs in interaction, as well as providing me with a vehicle for inserting blatant literary & hollywood -style nautical combat . Finally, the excuse-word " fantasy" does provide a useful cover-all for butt headed mistakes, as Jack Aubery would say (sort of, anyway). In short, I've tried to meld a high adventure & ripping yarns sensibility with a simulation of how floaties work. Oh yeah. I've intentionally tried to develop a Barkerese style of rule writing for maximum backwards obfuscatory compatability with HOTT. Hee Hee. Enjoy. Martin Costa Please send comments, editorial s or certificates for buckets of Doubloons to Mcostaspamremove@sequencespamremove.stanford.edu, after removing the obvious null "spamremove"
Hotspur.Element Types: Except as noted below.M. Sea serpent. and missile elements which are able to engage nauticals within range from the land. Revenge. and all huge gilded spanish treasure ships from hollywood. All other effects. Rigged so as to be more weatherly than most sail.S. more likely to bugger off if overmatched. cleric. Examples include the Great harry. all HOTT element types are included exactly as presented in the original rules. personality types (Hero. One element must be designated as containing the Admiral.S. and say that this class explicitly includes Elizabethan race built galleons) Examples include H. are resolved as if no special type was involved. except Galleons ( due to lack of castles and light artillery). (Note "frigate" is somewhat of an anachronism. Paladins clerics and Magicians are counted as mixed for movement purposes (only) if on water. Examples include medieval cinque port warship. Airboats.S. & the Arabella. the general or admiral must be of the predominating type and type of which the opponent has at least one element.M. Dragon. Of particular usefulness in this variant will be airborne elements (including Fliers. H. knarr. This element cannot be a Lurker. hulk. Sail or Mixed. For combat outcome use the most advantagous classification (nautical or non-nautical) if on water and again as normal HOTT type if on land. Elements are furtherclassified by movement type: Oared. carrack. as normal HOTT type if on land. Often converted merchantmen. All new elements presented below are Nauticals Galleon Large high charged ships with castles and buckets of marines. but capable of boarding against most ships. God. All smaller ships relying on wind for movement and boarding for combat. luckily this setting allows the purist in me to relax. Atropos and Sophie (to drop names again) Move: 5" Type: Sail . (See below for comments on Wizards) With regard to interactions between the two. Examples include the Golden Hind/Pelican. H. due to a distressing tendency to sink.M. Move: 4" Type: Sail Sloop Smaller sail and gunnery ships. Paladin. fast flush decked ships relying on heavy gunnery at range. Paladin or Buccaneer (way too anarchistic and unreliable to be trusted with overall command). early chinese junks. and Flying Heroes). Move: 3" Type: Sail Cog Name chosen for coolness -functionally similar types include include the nau. Surprise. in a purely nautical environment. many will be less effective. shooters have no special results when shooting at nauticals. nautical elements that shoot count as shooters for combat outcome (mainly to keep heroes from being slaughtered in an artillery rich environment) whereas land based artillery counts as shooting frigates for purposes of outcome on nautical units. Gods. seldom willing to close and board. unless noted specifically. Magician) who are assumed to be able to obtain a boat or ship from which to perform. Move: 3" Type: Sail Frigate Large. water lurkers. Sea monster. if carried is either antipersonnel or on field carriages & used at close range as an adjunct to boarding. Nautical elements FOTT introduces a new class of elements: Nauticals. Vulnerable to pinnaces for literary reasons. Needless to say. caravella redonda etc. Heroes. Artillery. They can move with impunity from land to sea & vice versa. If both land and nautical elements are included in the scenario.
S. Artillery. except some ranged shooting is possible. Examples include Dutch flyboats. such as. As well. non-melville whales in a surly mood. nautical Hordes. Move: 3" Type: Oar (second move option & mandatory follow-up) Longship : Oar and and sail ships. those nasty D&D guys with a trademarked name. and numerous finds at Skuldev. its the over enthusiastic crew that makes the difference.M. Examples include Horn-helmed literary Vikings. Examples: mermen. huge killer mutant trout and Narwhals Move: 3" Type: mixed (second move option & mandatory follow-up)) Deep ones Dudes who live underwater and are fond of swamping or swarming smaller ships or larger sea creatures. Galleys can hold their own in boarding actions with other galleys and smaller ships and boats. but hard to engage. relying on ramming to destroy enemy.) Sea monster Monsters. Comments as per galleons. for instance. really annoyed English Olympic rowing sculls. the disney Nautilus. Move: 4" Type: Oar (second move option & mandatory follow-up) Pinnaces Mobs of small boats of varied propulsion. Pierre LaGrand. as well as saxon warships. Korean turtle boats. Examples include C. Move: 3" Type: mixed Submersible Ships capable of limited submergance that rely on surprise and ramming to destroy foe. if carried is used as ether anti boarding (classical period) or as an adjunct/replacement for a ram (renaissance). With big nasty point teeth. more numerous sea monsters. big fantasy Orc-type hulks (tm). Evil empire dwarf Subs. Bismarck. Very fragile in all other situations. also. Willing and able to board & swarm over any other ship of less than capital size. Kraken. In the sea. such as cogs. Also. Cecil (on a bad day). and coastal inhabitants of certain decaying New England fishing towns. Examples include Moby dick. A destroyed pinnacemay be replaced by expending 1 pip & reappears at the owning player's entry edge.S. Move: 4" Type: Oar (second move option) Leviathan BIG things that float and run other things down. Move: 2" Type: mixed Dreadnaught BIG or effectively invulnerable things that fire immense weights of artillery Examples include H. pacific dragon boats and larger war canoes. Hunley. Move: 2" Type: Oar Galley Low decked. Examples include big-ass roman quinqueremes as well as Venetian Lepanto-era galleasses. civil war (or dwarvish )Monitors. crammed full of heavily armed criminal sociopaths. oar propelled ships. Not fliers. the Ben Franklinesque subs used in the movie . really. Extremely agile and fast but with a light hull vulnerable to rams and missiles. Examples include the Gokstad ship. Examples include Greek & persian triremes. Tend to charge and bite and ask questions later.Galleass Big huge sail.M. Melnebonean war barges. oar and artillery barges. Big irish Curraghs. mobs of piratical esquimaux in kayaks (as reported in various travel narratives of the time). but are vulnerable to high sided ships. Note that in many cases the vessle used could also be classified as a Cog or a galley. Victory. smaller. Oddly enough. K. includes the Nautilus (Jules Verne version) in combat situations. Move: 2" Type: mixed Sea Serpent: HOTT dragons with milieux appropriate name . or swarms of hungry crawdads. carthageneian galleys. "honest fishermen" from Devon & Rye.S. Pacific Northwest Amerinds in war canoes. Examples include : most reported sea monsters.S. so we keep them that way . Dyak warboats. Kraken. say smaller mutant walking killer trout.
Unlike Hordes or Pinnaces. (or. if used as is.). . Much more effective than historical examples. cost 3 points if used in FOTT battles. note that this explicitly includes the effects of wind and weather. Aquamancers/Boccours & Sea monsters cost 4 points Galleons. However. Move: 2" Type: Oar (second move option) Fireship/Hellburner Currently unable to decide which name is cooler. A destroyed buccaneer may be replaced by expending 6 pips & reappears at the owning player's entry edge. replace with same penalty for casting across land. on 20mm x 20mm base. Examples include. the basing convention used thus far is one model/base on a 20mm frontage x 40mm + depth base. Note: HOTT magicians. but includes both 1/1000. except that they are encorcelled as a fish or other suitable aquatic type on the second bepelling roll of a 1. Frigates. Lurkers: For the normal pip costs. Ignore the penalty for casting across water. HOTT mages with milleaux appropriate name. 1/600 and 1/2400 models. a monumentally revisionist Blackbeard. and modified so they don't suck at sea (remember the rules about spells and water ?). very much a one-shot weapon. the scale & basing system is constrained by the contents of my collection and is quite varied with regard to scale. Dreadnoughts. Move: 5" Type: mixed Aquamancers/Boccour: Currently unable to decide which name is cooler. Fleet limitations are as in HOTT . Regular lurkers may only be placed in rough going on land. Otherwise the same. Pinnaces are currently mounted three to a base. etc. Buccaneers. Represent all manner of floating disaster areas loaded with combustables or explosives and aimed at the enemy with a lashed helm. They also may be placed anywhere in the water for double the current replacement value. Pinnaces cost 1 point All other cost 2 points. so no worries about wind direction. Galleasses & Submersibles cost 3 points Unmodified HOTT magicians cost 3 points. as well as some 25mm figures (gods. monsters. Sea Serpents. optionally. Overall scale is approximated as 1/1200.. (often cruelly wronged by his homeland and /or love) and a crew of good-hearted murderers who cheerfully capture enemy ships for the good of their homeland and the entirely incidental plunder.. Note: the high cost represents both play balance and everyone watching in awe while the Star reappears). (second and subsequent move option) Buccaneer Ships commanded by a dashing and heroic rogue. Francis Drake in his hollywood "Seahawks" guise. water lurkers may be placed anywhere in the water in contact with an element that counts as being in bad going . Scale & Basing: At present. Primary propulsion is literary. sagassos) New Element Costs Leviathan. PETER BLOOD. replacement represents the same unit reappearing after a Cunning Escape or a sequel.maximum of half the cost may be in 3 or 4 point elements."buccaneer" (I think).
bespelling. they're wading . Elements in contact and not allocated a pip for movement (or station keeping. allowing for the parts of the story where the fleets clash. . which allows maneuvering. A sail element uses the movement allowance it STARTS its movement with regardless of changes of heading or wind. Elements in contact with enemy elements at the beginning of a bound may not move. yadda yah wheel thru same arcs yadda yah. after all) but may not enter deep water at all. or . and in more ways like individual ships. except to break contact with a slower opponent. Unused pips may be reserved for spellcasting or capturing in the opponents bound but are lost if not used by the end of the opponent's next bound.) ) . Individual oar or mixed elements may move in any direction including directly to the rear and may make any number of heading changes. moving and costing pips as an individual element. and are destroyed if forced to do so. and then zoom in on the hero's ship.Movement is in inches. if moving. unless moving as a one element wide column. Model/element representation is left purposely indeterminate. makes group movement MUCH simpler. Justification: 1. arr) for one pip. or elves and dwarves (for maximum compatibility with the main rules . If able to otherwise move. otherwise they remain in place. not would the reverse increase it. Foot and mounted units may only enter shallow water if part of the element is in contact with dry land (yes. and. replacement . Groups may be any elements in contact. Movement Movement is by groups or individual elements as regulated by pip expenditure.if oared. Galleys. belike. thus moving from reaching to beating does not reduce the elements overall movement. Oared elements or groups require a pip to move. Each player rolls a D6 at the beginning of their bound. directly to the rear. In some ways the elements act like squadrons. move directly ahead . being indeterminate fantasy-type scaling units. as appropriate) drift 1" directly downwind. Sail elements or groups move a full move ahead. A group may not contain both Sail and Oar types. Sea Monsters and Submersibles may make a second normal move for an extra pip if such move results in the element ending in frontal contact . all elements must have the same heading. Individual sail elements. Groups of any type must move forward or by wheels. and then allocates pips for movement. I think it more effectively models how sailing ships move compared to land units (inertia being a big factor at sea) and 2. 1" can be assumed to equal 100p for combined land/sea HOTT games in 15mm. desorcellement and capturing elements as needed throught the bound. Movement expended to turn is not counted against a Nautical element's allowance. _unless_ a pip is spent. but may turn turn to any heading _once_ at any point during movement (or without movement) or maintain position and heading (boxhauling. after ALL player movement is completed. each bound.and can engage nauticals by so doing ! This is fantasy.
Sailing ships except for sloops count as beating if the wind is forward of the beam (90 degrees). deep ones and buccaneers and heroes (who always know the secret passage). sloops if it is forward of 45 degrees. Shooting ranges : Artillery Dreadnaught Frigate. and more likely to drown. and may only fire at one target. except for deep ones and sea monsters (they live there. whereas blades are more heavily armored than shooters or warbands. Galleasses. pinnaces.(Digression & rationalization: compared to infantry types. Wind and weather effects are cumulative with other terrain. Other terrain Shallows count as bad going for Galleons. and may change during its course. Frigates. unless shot at. NOTE: for maximum fun. after all). Dog paddle anyone ?) Terrain Wind and weather are treated as terrain factors at sea in addition to physical features. and beasts can swim some. Sargassos are bad going for all and require a roll to pass. white water/breakers. Buccaneer Sloop Galleass 5" shooting from front edge 4" from any side 3" from either side 2" from either side 1" from any side Nautical elements fire only in their own bound. insanely strong currents) count as bad going for all except airborne types. Note that a shooting element cannot act as a support if it can itself be shot at. etc. after all. Oar treats rough seas conditions and worse as bad going. which must be any element able to shoot at it if such is available. Mixed treat storm conditions as bad going Airborne treat storm and worse as bad going. Reefs are treated as rivers. Sail movement treats beating movement and storm conditions as bad going. Note: randomly firing cannons are NOT terrain. Pete !) Combat Shooting Elements shoot as in HOTT. and are becalmed if no wind exists. after all taller. Leviathans Dreadnoughts and Sea monsters Rough seas (waterspout. extra elements beyond the first count as overlaps. mounted and behemoths can go further : they are. Wind direction and weather are determined before the scenario. allow foot units to move by individual elements on sargassos (remember the movie where they used balloons and pontoons ! fun fun fun). require a roll to pass for all except airborne types. . Included at the insistance of my local gaming group (Hi. maelstrom. and while not bad going.
All overlapping elements share the outcome of the primary element. An overlapping element may count as an overlap for multiple combats. +1 Admiral's element +2 Galley. remain in contact. Destroyed if sail or oar in contact with foot or if fireship/hellburner and shot at or in contact with pinnaces. Frigate. or if any shooting in storm. Submersible. Ships which have any contact less than a full edge with an opponent after all movement count as overlaps. the attacking ship is moved the minimum neccessary such that one edge of the attacker fully contacts the opponent. Galleass shooting. Combat outcome If final combat result is: Greater than opponent's Destroyed if fireship Tied Both destroyed if either element is a submersible or sea monster in ramming contact. Dreadnaught or Leviathan in contact in shallow water. if worse than that of the primary contact. Longship or Pinnaces in contact or if any shooting in rough seas or worse. elements may not shoot again within the timeframe of a battle. Else. multiple elements may contact the same element if space permits. (front. rear or either side) being in full contact. with extra ships in contact counting for overlap. Contact occurs when any part of an element touches any part of an opposing element. Submersible or Galleass in contact or shooting. or Galley . When multiple ships are in contact with a single opponent. Combat factors See outcome results for individual element factors. -1 per overlap or extra contact after the primary. In addition : -2 captured element. or Dreadnaught shooting in shallow water. . elements in full side or front or rear contact with the friendly primary element count as overlaps. or sea monster ramming (moved into frontal contact this bound). Galleon. If this does not involve an edge of the attacking elements (front. rear or either side) fight as in HOTT with the following changes. Sea Monster . but a primary element may not be count as an overlap for another combat. Close combat Element in full edge contact with a fireship or opposing elements. or outcome.Once captured (or recaptured) by any other than Buccaneer. the owner chooses which is to be the primary element for factors and outcome. or if in contact and either element and either dice is a six.
Paladin. capturing player must pay . Capturing elements. cog in contact. destroyed if in contact. captured by frigate destroyed by Galleon or Cog in contact. Half or less than opponent's: Deep Ones not in shallow water or on land Flee 6" Else If shot at. fliers. If if shot at and not specified above. galley in ram contact. Pinnaces +1 Sea monster +3* Deep Ones +2 Leviathan +5 Dreadnaught +4 Submersible +0* Buccaneer +3 Hero. or any in contact. destroyed unless captured by a less extreme result (above). captured by deep ones destroyed by deep Ones. sea monster or or pinnaces in contact destroyed by airboat or shooting dreadnaught destroyed by submersible in contact or flier destroyed by flier. captured by longship. captured by longship destroyed by galleon in contact. unless pinnaces. or any except god or leviathan in contact with leviathan front edge.otherwise. Cleric. Ignore shooting in own bound. remain in contact . shooting or deep ones destroyed by galley in ram contact destroyed by shooting frigate.galley in ram contact. pinnaces or longship in contact ignore shooting unless on land or in shallow water. Captured by Buccaneer in contact Destroyed if sail or oar in contact with foot. turn away and recoil from shooting Note: ram contact is any situatiation in which the element in question has moved into frontal contact this bound. Recoil if Foot or Mounted in contact with nautical If not specified above: Galleon Cog Frigate Sloop Galleass Galley Longship: +5 +3 +3 +2 +4 +2* +2 destroyed by shooting frigate. and otherwise qualifies for the +2 ramming bonus. contact. captured by longship. water lurkers. cog or galleon in contact . Captured elements are moved into contact with the winning element if not already in contact. Captured by longship. destroyed by shooting. galley in ram contact . captured or destroyed If in contact. recoil from Galleass.Less than opponent's but greater than half: Destroyed by Fireship in contact. airboat. or sneakers as in HOTT If in contact and not specified above. captured by pinnaces in contact destroyed by galley in ram contact. destroyed by longship. or deep ones destroyed by longships or cogs in contact. Flee from sea monster.
with recaptured ship counting as primary or overlap as described above. combat result less than half : destroyed by shooting. Combat must take place if enemy in contact. Element cost x 1 1/2 Green crews suffer a -1 when scoring less than or equal to their opponent in shooting or close contact Element cost x 3/4 Poor crews gain a -1 at all times Element cost x x 1/2 1 and 4 point elements cannot be modified by the above. Element cost x 2 Crack crews gain a +1 when scoring less than or equal to their opponent in shooting or close contact. captured by any other in contact or shooting. (read: simplified) due to not working in several playtest situations. Elite crew gain a +1 at all times. count as 2 pts each toward defeat. just the above sentence generated a paragraph of questions and need for clarification. elements required to follow up do so by moving forward the depth of their base. and " This was deleted because long bitter experience has taught me that the most contentuous part of any age of sail game is that of raking. and cool to boot. 2/15/01: the capturing rules were revised.. If pips are not expended. destroyed by other in contact. If the losing player is able to move an element into contact with the captured element BEFORE the pips can be paid.picky.picky. captured by oar or sail in contact. pure and simple.picky. Raking: add to combat factors table "-1 if shot at and shortest line distance from shooter to target is through targets front edge. Optional rules: Merchants : each merchant added to players fleet (up to a maximum of 4) allows 1 bonus points of extra units. So. And indeed . Following up When an opponent recoils or is destroyed. or the enemies base. submersible or leviathan in front edge contact . element is destroyed.pips equal to the cost of the element -1 immediately (using reserved pips) or at the beginning of the winning players next bound . Combat factor: +1 combat result less than but greater than half: destroyed by sea monsters. This rule is untested and chrome. deep ones. but cannot be moved that bound and is still classed as a captured ship for combat. but if lost or captured. the owner is defeated regardless of other conditions... If all are sunk or captured. if enemy unit was destroyed Victory As in HOTT. the element is recaptured automatically.. Crew Quality: Crew quality is an important factor in maritime battles. .. THWI. Merchants are initially declared as sail or oar at owning player's discretion.