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GM Question - How many ships?


Skull & Shackles


Warning: Very general spoilers ahead.

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I'm currently running (1)The Wormwood Mutiny, preparing for (2)Raiders of the Fever Sea. My players will be attacking various ships which they may want to sink, sell, or keep. Should the PCs be building a fleet? If you've run or played Skull & Shackles, what are your thoughts on dealing with defeated ships?


I'm running S&S and my group is almost finished (last half of part 6).

What you'll find in the beginning is that your players won't have enough people to crew multiple ships and they don't have a port or base of operations in which to dock / maintain them. Also, they'll need the plunder from the sales of the ships to increase their reputation as Infamous Pirates.

Later they may decide to upgrade if they take a better ship, or keep one or two once they establish a base.

By the 5th book, they will begin to amass a fleet - until then, just take it one ship at a time, and have fun.

Also, take the time to read some of the posts on the forums that discuss the ending to this AP. Overall, I don't regret running it, but I agree that without changes to the end, I would have hated it.

Looking forward to Shattered Star and Reign of Winter...

Shadow Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Our group is in book 3 right now. Generally they have chosen to sack ships for plunder and then let them sail on. Can't steal from merchants that you put entirely out of business. :) In one case they took a ship and sold it for plunder and in one case dealing with a pirate ship they took it and hired a crew for it. So they now have two ships, one of which all the PC's use as their flagship and the other is independently terrorizing the Fever Sea under their banner helping increase their infamy.

Basically, Firstbourne is right in my experience to this point. Before the party took Tidewater Rock they would have had no way to handle multiple ships. Even now a fleet would be more of an inconvenience than a help. They need the Plunder more than the ships. I do expect them to start building their fleet through the 4th and then heavily in the 5th books.


Had the same problem we are in the sandbox part of book 2, my guys have another ship, they have found a hidden cove to berth it but the suddenley relised that although they had the crew they did not have enough officers to man 2 ships.

The ship is still in the cove as they still want to use it later (they had 56 crew and apart form themselves (Cpt, Navigator/carpenter and cook/seige engineer), Kroop (he has become a compitant siege gunner), Rosie (the first mate), Conch (atarting to become a sailor) and Sandara (surgeon). They let 1O of the crew go to make the ship more managable. The problem is all the NPC'sare well liked and the players did not want to slpit them up.


Firstbourne wrote:
By the 5th book, they will begin to amass a fleet - until then, just take it one ship at a time, and have fun.

That's good to hear! I was hoping that the majority of the AP would have them sailing around as pirates rather than managing a fleet.

ferrinwulf wrote:
The problem is all the NPC'sare well liked and the players did not want to slpit them up.

I'm glad you mentioned that. In addition to numerical pressure (you don't have enough sailors for two ships) I think I'll have a handful of the most-loved NPCs express their unwillingness to leave the PC's crew.

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Firstbourne wrote:
Also, take the time to read some of the posts on the forums that discuss the ending to this AP. Overall, I don't regret running it, but I agree that without changes to the end, I would have hated it.

I've gotten a vague impression of that, so I'm glad you confirmed my suspicions. I'll plan to make some edits!

Taldor

My crew can easily use Bluff/Diplomacy/Intimidate checks to turn over crew of captured ships. I allow each PC to make a roll per day once they capture a ship for 1d4+2, but any who fail give a -2 (cumulative) to the checks of the others. Currently they sail the Stormcutter (Man's Promise) and the Hellbreaker (chelish cutter).

How are you going about hiring expert crew as gunners?

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