Last Updated December 4, 2002

TURN SEQUENCE
  • Write down orders
  • Roll for receipt & action of orders
  • Simultaneous Movement
  • Accidental Fouling
  • Cannons Fire
  • Marines Fire
  • Deliberate Grappling
  • Boarding Actions Fought
  • Morale Checks
MOVEMENT SPEEDS
Wind Direct
Ship O Line
Frigate
Aft
4"
6"
Quarter
6"
8"
Bow
3"
4"
In Irons
0"
0"
Aft is 60 degrees to rear of ship. Quarter is 60 degrees to either side of aft. In Irons is 60 degrees to front of ship. Bow is 60 degrees to either side of In Irons. These map directly to a hex board
BOARDING (1D10)
Ship Size Modifiers <38 gun
-2
38 - 50 gun
-1
64 - 80 gun
0
>80 gun
+1
Crew Quality modifiers Poor (Spanish)
-2
Mediocre (French)
-1
Professional (French / British)
0
Elite (British)
+1
Each deck lost in boarding action
-1
64's and above. Each 3 crew casualties
-1
<64's Each 2 crew casualties
-1
BOARDING EFFECTS CHART
Equal
1 crew casualty each
+1 / +2
1 attacker & 2 defender crew lost
+3
2 defender crew lost
+4
3 defender crew lost
+5
4 defender crew lost + lose a deck
6+
5 crew casualties and lose the ship
Both sides roll 1D10, apply modifiers and then compare resulting difference with table above
ORDERS TABLE
Order
On 1 Dice
Nation
Dice?
Turn in line
5+
Spanish
1D6
Tack
6+
French
1D8 or 1D10
Independent action (Only British @ 12")
4+
British
1D10 or 1D12
With a repeater frigate with the fleet add +1. Only one roll per fleet. (Independent frigates also +1)

MORALE 1D6

Roll 1D6 high number is rolled ship strikes it's colours. Low number keep on playing.

Crew Quality
M Check
M2 Check
Elite
6
4+
Professional
5+
3+
Average
4+
2+
Poor
3+
Automatic

                  ACCIDENTAL FOULING
If 1 ship comes within 1 inch in front or behind (but not to side) of another ship and neither one wishes to board, roll 1D6 to determine if a collision has occurred. Elite crews can't accidentally foul. Professional /Average crews foul on a score of 6. Poor crews foul on a score of 5 or 6.

Fouled ships do not move.

If fouled roll 5,6 on 1D6 each turn to unfoul. Crew quality doesn't matter then, Only one of the ships may roll (either)

Shooting
Gun Size
Short
Medium
Long
Damage
Gun Size
Crew Quality
24 & 32 pdr
0 - 6
7 - 12
13 - 24
High
1D10
Elite
2D12
18 pdr
0 - 4
5 - 9
10 - 18
Medium
1D8
Professional
2D10
6 - 12 pdr
0 - 3
4 - 6
7 - 12
Low
1D6
Average
2D8
Carronades
0 - 2
3 - 4
5 - 6
High
1D12
Poor
2D6
Range modifier
+2 to hit
Standard
-2 to Hit
For each additional battery add +1 to hit
Grape modifiers
+2 to hit
-2 to hit
can't fire
For each additional battery of 6 - 18 pdr's add +1 to damage done Larger does 2 damage
Double Shotted (2 turn load)
+1 level of effectiveness
standard
can't fire
Marines
0 - 2
6 on 1D6 kills an enemy marine or crew. (Marines first)
Bow or stern rake go up one level of damage, high becomes all.
British 1 on 1D6 for rigging hit 2-6 for hull / Others 1-3 on 1D6 for rigging 4-6 for hull
For all ships roll 1D for gun size and 2D for crew quality. To hit all ships score 18
SHIP CHARACTERISTICS TABLE (generic ships)
Nbr Of Guns
Nbr Of Each Gun Size
Hull Points
Rigging Points
Crew
Marines
Armour
32pdr
24pdr
18pdr
6/12pdr
112 - 120
3
3
4
-
65
22
18
6
6
100
3
3
4
-
61
20
16
5
6
80
3
3
2
-
50
16
14
4
5
74 Large
3
4
-
-
46
15
13
3
5
74 Small
3
-
4
-
43
15
13
3
4
64
-
3
3
-
32
13
11
3
4
40 - 44
-
-
3
2
18
9
7
2
3
38
-
-
3
1
18
8
6
1
2
36 18pdr
. . . 12 pdr
-
-
-
-
3
-
-
4
14
14
8
8
6
6
1
1
2
2
32 18 pdr
. . . 12 Pdr

-
-

-
-

2
-

1
3

12
10
7
7
5
5
1
1
1
1
24 - 28
-
-
-
2
8
6
4
1
0

EXPLANATION OF RULES

Turn Sequence & Orders - Fleets must move in line astern, in a straight line until a new order is received, the more professional navies such as Britain could change order and manoeuvre their ships better than less well trained navies. In addition Britain is allowed to order their ships to independent action once the enemy is within 12 inches. If you wish your fleet to change direction roll one dice (dependant on overall average fleet crew quality) to determine whether fleet all acknowledge the order. Apart from quality only modifier is if you have a frigate deployed to one side of the battle line where it can operate as a repeater frigate (recommended). If the number required is rolled then the fleet can turn to a new heading (up to 120 degrees max change and not through "In Irons") as you require in line as each ship gets to the turn point. If number is not achieved then fleet must continue in straight line and try again next turn. This is to simulate that manoeuvring a large fleet of sailing ships of the line is no mean achievement. Please note that if you are going to turn directly into the wind (In irons) then you must roll for Tacking not just turning, and you are still restricted to a maximum of 120 degrees in a single turn.

Once a fleet successfully starts a turn of any sort, no further orders may be issued until all ships in the line have completed the turn.

Frigates do not sail in line, they may each manoeuvre as they see fit. BUT each one still needs to roll on the orders table to turn etc. Because it is one ship and not a fleet it is easier so they always get the +1 as if there were a repeater frigate in line.

e.g. a Spanish fleet of 5 74's with a repeater frigate to the port side wishes to run 120 degrees to starboard, and is not crossing into the wind 5+ is required and 1 is added to the throw because of the repeater frigate. A D6 is used because they are a poor quality crewed fleet. a 4 is rolled, increased to 5 by the frigate and this is sufficient, the first ship turns 120 degrees to starboard, and each ship in line turns 120 degrees when they reach the same point in the line. This may take 2 or 3 turns to complete, it doesn't matter no further rolls are required. The Frigate may manoeuvre as it wishes.

Turning / Tacking - When "Turning" basically you can not sail into the 60 degree arc into the wind, which means that if you were just to the right of the wind and wished to go to just to the left of it you would have to turn all the way around to get there. The alternative is "Tacking", a very skillful way of swapping from 30 degrees to starboard of the wind to 30 degrees to port of the wind (or vice versa), needs a skillful crew to achieve but obviously saves time and sea way

Movement speeds - Movement is in inches, (or hexes), I have kept the wind directions in 60 degree chunks to map directly to a hex board if you choose to use one. (I don't).

Boarding - If you run your ship up against an opponent, you can automatically board, if the opponent can repel you from his decks then he can automatically ungrapple, if he wishes. (You may wish to use more complicated rules for this, I prefer to concentrate on the boarding action rather than the grappling itself.

Results of boarding are worked out similarly to firing the guns. One dice comes from size of ship whilst other comes from crew quality. As the ships take casualties (see rules) they drop ship size. e.g. if the 74 above boarded the French and had lost 3 crew casualties in the process they would now fight with a D8 dice for ship size on the next round, instead of a D10. Also if you have lost one or more decks in the current fight you have a -3 penalty to your final score to reflect failing morale as you lose ground.

You can only lose the number of decks you have. So a single decker frigate that loses a deck surrenders. a 2 Decker (64-80) that loses it's 2nd deck surrenders, whilst ships above 80 guns generally are three deckers and have to lose 3 decks. If of course difference in scores is 15 or more the ship is automatically lost in one go.

Accidental Fouling - I think this is fairly self explanatory

Shooting - These rules use a variant of the firing mechanisms in "Silent Death", an excellent set of space combat rules. Basically 3 dice are rolled and these determine whether the target was hit and how much damage was done all in one roll. One of the dice is dependent on the calibre of the guns, e.g. 1D10 for 32pdr's, whilst 2 of the dice are dependent on the quality of the crew, e.g. An Elite British crew would use 2D12 (Crew quality is more important than ship and gun size) apply modifiers for range, and any pluses for extra batteries. (All guns of one calibre roll together) e.g. A 74 has 3 batteries of 32pdr's per side, with the above Elite British crew at point blank range 0-6 this would be 1D10 + 2D12 + 2 for extra batteries + 2 for range. Roll the dice and if the result is 18 or higher then the ship has been hit.

To determine damage check whether the calibre of gun fired does Low, Medium, High, or All damage. If Low take the lowest Die rolled, If medium the one in the middle, etc. If there is a double or triple score then both are counted. E.g. 32pdr's count High but if the resultant throw above was 7,9,9 then damage would be 18 not 9. Add bonus's to damage for extra batteries and double shotted.

Determine whether the target was hit in the hull or the rigging, by rolling 1D6, once per firing ship per turn will be enough. (Historically the Brits aim for Hull, French aim for Rigging)

Then deduct the armour value of the ship from the damage. This basically means there's little point 10 sloops firing at a 1st rate man of war, they just aren't going to damage it. In reality I don't think they would do any appreciable damage and would never dare such a thing in the first place, the returning volley would certainly have destroyed them utterly.

NB - I had forgotten to mention arc of fire. Guns may fire on a 60 degree arc to port and starboard of the ship. This again equates to a single hex side if you choose to use a hex board. For the purpose of these games it is assumed that no firing is allowed to front or rear. For the purpose of these rules it is also assumed a small number of carronades if any are built into the ships. If you wish to model late napoleonic totally carronade armed frigates count the firepower as equivalent to the next size up, but considerably reduce the firing range.

Marines fire - Fairly straight forward assumed everyone's marines were about equal quality, you may add bonus's if you feel it is appropriate

 

Morale Check - See the ship record cards, as damage is accumulated every ship has two morale check points, M and M2 at each of these points a D6 is rolled. If the roll is failed (number on chart) then that ship will strike it's colours and play no further part in the game. It is assumed a small prize crew is sent over. If you roll less than the number on the chart, continue fighting.

SHIP RECORD CARDS :- (100 gun Victory being used for example)

Hull 61 - means there are 61 hull boxes that require marking off before the ship is a wreck
Rigging 20 - means that a total of 20 rigging boxes need to be destroyed before the ship can not move
Crew 16 means there are 16 crew (excluding marines) that need to be killed/wounded before the ship is crewless (each crew = very roughly about 30 men)
Marines 5 means that there are 5 marine figures that can fire. Each Marine represents something vaguely like about 10-20 marines
Armour 6 means that every battery that hits the ship has "6" reduced from it before the damage is applied, it represents the armour equivalent of the ships hull. It makes it pointless firing tiny guns at a 100 gunner.
3X32pdr + 3X24pdr + 4X18pdr means that the ship is armed with three batteries (normally one per deck) that can fire this number of guns PER BROADSIDE each gun represents about 5 guns per broadside, so about 15 32pdr guns on each broadside of the victory.
Crew Quality - indicates the quality of the crew of the ship.
Ball or Grape - little indicator as to whether the ship is currently loaded with ball or grape, can be different on each side if you really want.
Double shotted, indicates the guns have been double shotted.
Ship fouled - mark to indicate the ship is tangled with another
Lost a deck to boarders - mark to indicate that this ship has lost at least one boarding action badly enough to lose a deck, this has an effect in boarding actions and is not good.

Hull damage table - Every time the hull is hit, mark off a number of boxes. If a box with a number in it is crossed out then a gun battery of that strength (on both port and starboard) has been destroyed and is no longer available to fire. Every time a "C" box is crossed off a crew factor has been killed / wounded. mark off a box on the separate Crew casualties table. When you cross out the "M" box, take a morale check, take another morale check when you cross out the M2 box. (Unless you surrendered on your M roll of course)

Rigging damage table - similar to the hull table. Mark off rigging hits. a C means a crew casualty is marked off just like hull. 75% etc. when crossed out means the ship is now reduced to that percentage of it's normal speed. Most ships have to lose all of their rigging boxes before they are reduced to stationery. You could then introduce drifting rules, but I can't be bothered!

Crew Casualties - As covered under hull damage chart. Mark off the crew casualties and take morale checks when M and M2 boxes are marked off. In the unlikely event you get to NO crew left then all the crew are dead or wounded and the ship automatically surrenders.

Marines - Indicates the number of marines you have that can fire their muskets. If they all get killed it doesn't affect anything, you just don't have any marines left. (Tough life in the marines!)

I haven't had as much time to play these rules as I would have liked, please give me feedback on what you think. They can be used for the war with America in 1812 if you like. The American ships were NOT super ships, nor did they win every fight they went into, but they did have fine crews the equal of the British, they tended to be a little larger than the British ships, and were very heavily armed for their size, (Frigates with 24pdr's)

 

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