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The Royal Hajj
09-24-2013, 08:31
This subject has come up a couple of times in different threads and seeing how I have ran about a dozen or so games of Sails of Glory, I thought it was time to share what I've learned thus far.

Setup

How you setup the player's components before the game will help set the tone of how players will interact with them during the game. If you have them all arranged nicely in a manner that make sense game wise, the players will naturally start off playing organized. This can save valuable time during the game. Below is how I setup for every player:

http://sailsofglory.org/attachment.php?attachmentid=6988&d=1380019615

The maneuver deck is placed closest to the player so that when they sit down and want to pick something up, the deck is the closest and most interesting item. I don't want them moving the tokens and such around just yet, because I'll be using them to explain how the game works and if they are mixed up or moved, it can lead to confusion. While we are on the subject of the maneuver deck, you will want to make sure that the cards are organized. For SGN, each ship has two of every maneuver. These maneuvers have a "Veer" value ranging from 0 to 10 (at this point at least). You should arrange the cards in pairs of 0, 1, 2 3, etc all the way to a pair of 10s if the ship has them. At this point, remove one of the lowest and highest Veer value cards and set them out on the table above the ship's mat (as in the picture above). These two cards are going to be used to explain an important rule... which happens to be the hardest for new players to grasp at first.

Note the Combat Ruler is laid out on the right hand side. 90% of people of right handed. By placing the CR on the right, you avoid anyone dragging their sleeves across the ship mat and messing up those tokens. Similarly with the cloud markers being up top. Most gamers will slide the clouds off the top of the mat when picking them up.

The mini I put as far from the player as possible at first and stern towards them. Once they really start looking at that little beauty, I'll have a hard time keeping their attention while I explain the rules.

The tokens on the ship mats are laid out to help me explain the rules. All of the actions are turned face up and placed logically (right load and fire on the right side, etc.). This is so that players don't have to pick the tokens up trying to find the one I'm talking about. They can see them all at a glance and get the "big picture" as I'm talking about each one. Finally, notice that I have the ammunition tokens face down and in the "shot locker" section of the mat. This is again to help explain/demonstrate the rules for loading and firing the great guns.

Rules

For all of my games I start players right off the bat using the Standard Rules for movement and combat, with one exception, I only use round shot for the ammunition (leaving out chain and grape). I also add the following Actions from the Advanced Rules:

Increase Sails
Decrease Sails
Load Guns (R&L)
Fire Guns (R&L)
Musketry Fire

The Standard Rules are very streamlined and easy to use and the delayed maneuver planning really gives this game it's feel of sailing a ship of the wind. Leaving out the different ammunition types cuts down on the number or choices a player has to make/remember and keeps the game moving along at 7 or 8 knots ;)

The Actions that I add in are all "immediate" Actions, meaning they are applied in the turn they are planned. Again this is a simple concept for the players and adds yet another layer of realism with out much game interference.


Tell the players that the game has 4 phases that you will cover in detail, and those phase are:

Planning
Movement
Combat
Reloading

When explaining the rules, start by giving a brief overview of what the ship mat is and what each section is used for. Save the details until you are covering that portion of the rules. Giving the players a quick overview helps them follow along better when you cover each section/phase of the game.

Start the detailed rules explanation with the ship's stats. Use the ship card and show how those stats reappear on the base card and on the ship mat.

http://sailsofglory.org/attachment.php?attachmentid=6991&d=1380027919

http://sailsofglory.org/attachment.php?attachmentid=6990&d=1380027919

Don't cover the attitude zones (red, orange, and green) just yet. Save that for the movement sections, which you will cover next

I don't start with the Planning phase, as I cover it after explaining how physically moving the miniatures work and just before talking about the Actions. Since both moving and actions are part of the Planning phase, it just makes since to use it as a segue from movement to Actions.

When explaining how to do movement, there are three major points you need to insure the players under stand, the attitude of the wind to the ship, the taken aback rules, and the Veer rule.

Explain the attitude zones and how to measure the ships attitude to the wind as well as how that translates into which movement arrow they are going to use on the card they have selected.

For the taken aback movements, I've found a crude but effective way for players to remember how to use the single or double sand-glass movement line: Number 1 comes out the front, number 2 comes out the rear :shock:

The Veer rules is the one most players have a hard time getting. Look back up at the first image of this post. Remember when we set the highest and lowest valued cards out, here is why. A player may not select a maneuver card whose veer value is different (higher or lower) from the previous maneuver card by more than the ship’s Veer rating. In my photo above, if the player had planned the card on the left (Veer value of 0), he could not plan the card on the right (Veer value 10) because the ship only has a Veer value of 7. 0+7=7, so the highest Veer value he could plan would be 7. Going the opposite direction, if the player had planned the card on the right (Veer value 10), he could only plan a maneuver valued at 3-10. This rule is there to keep ships from changing direction to quickly for their size, but still allowing them to turn as tight in each direction. Having the ship displayed between the two extreme cards helps new players visualize this rule.

Now I explain the Raise and Lower Sail actions and how they also determine which movement line they will use on the card. I follow this up with explaining the Loading and Firing of the great guns. How you move and flip the ammunition tokens to keep track of the time elapsed between firing and being ready to fire again. I also cover the Reloading phase here.

Finally I teach them how combat works and how it is applied to both the Hull and Crew damage tracks on the ship mat. Fortunately, combat is pretty straight forward and the only thing that needs a more in-depth explanation is what I call the "Penetrating Shot". Is is when a single damage token of a shot meets or exceeds the target ships Burden value. Most of the time they don't get the need for this rule, but it's there for purposes that I am not using in the demo game. They just need to know about it and apply damage that way so they are learning to do it correctly from day one.

That's pretty much it. The wonderful game mechanics do all the hard work behind the scenes. I've had complete landsman and salty old sea dogs play at the same table and everything went smoothly using this approach.

I hope this helps you guys out that plan on running some demo games.

7eat51
09-24-2013, 08:37
Great tutorial Keith. :thumbsup:

Devsdoc
09-24-2013, 11:42
Keith,
I like a lot. Harder to explain how too do it, than do it I think. Thanks :salute:
Be safe
Rory

The Royal Hajj
09-24-2013, 13:07
Keith,
I like a lot. Harder to explain how too do it, than do it I think. Thanks :salute:
Be safe
Rory

Very much so!

Nightmoss
09-24-2013, 13:26
Thanks for this. Was helpful to me and I've been fortunate enough to play one demo.

Where do you place the individual ship cards for a demo? It's not pictured in the first photo, but you show it further down. Do you put it in the designated slot?

The Royal Hajj
09-24-2013, 13:53
If/When I have the actual ship cards, I will place them in their official slot at the bottom left of the mat.

Nightmoss
09-24-2013, 15:54
If/When I have the actual ship cards, I will place them in their official slot at the bottom left of the mat.

Thanks. I thought you had ship cards in hand and would have included them in the demo setup? They did have them in use at GenCon, and they're very nice.

The Royal Hajj
09-24-2013, 17:03
I did have one or two, but not when I took this shot.

Naharaht
09-24-2013, 21:33
Thank you for this. It looks very helpful.

Old Ironsides
10-09-2013, 15:48
Awesome....hoping to get in on the game at ROCKCON or at least watch.

Comte de Brueys
10-09-2013, 23:59
Somehow I missed this good advice. :smack:

It will be very needful for the first game with my gaming group.

Cool Breeze
10-14-2013, 11:22
Keith,

This advice was perfect for my demos at iCon! Thank you, thank you, thank you! The last demo of the last day resulted in a sale actually...

A couple who drove up from 4-hours away loved it so much they contacted their friend who informed them before they left to be sure and try SoG, as he ordered 3 KS copies and would sell them one of those if they like it! How cool is that?

The Royal Hajj
10-14-2013, 11:39
Glad to hear you had a good weekend demoing the game Curtis.

Andy Blozinski
10-14-2013, 21:12
Oh damn how incredibly useful the original post is! Now I have yet another book mark to organize.

PirateBlake
10-18-2013, 08:35
Agreed Andy. Keith thanks for info will be very useful :salute:

PirateBlake
10-18-2013, 08:35
Oops forgot. Arggggh. There much better now.

The Barrelman
10-18-2013, 08:53
For the taken aback movements, I've found a crude but effective way for players to remember how to use the single or double sand-glass movement line: Number 1 comes out the front, number 2 comes out the rear :shock:


Not crude... It's a fun potty joke that lifts the mood and stops people from possibly feeling overwhelmed by the rules.

:embarass: :sly:

Capn Duff
10-20-2013, 07:42
Interesting Keith, I think
I may be running a few demo games in the UK when SoG is released so this will be helpful

7eat51
10-20-2013, 13:43
Not crude... It's a fun potty joke that lifts the mood and stops people from possibly feeling overwhelmed by the rules.

I will be quoting our First Sea Lord on this this weekend. It is easy to remember, especially for those unfamiliar with AoS maneuvering.

The Royal Hajj
10-22-2013, 10:13
Thanks everyone, I hope it helps as much when you actually have the game in hand as it seems to now.



I will be quoting our First Sea Lord on this this weekend. It is easy to remember, especially for those unfamiliar with AoS maneuvering.

Just be careful with your references to masts ;) lol

The Royal Hajj
10-22-2013, 10:13
Thanks everyone, I hope it helps as much when you actually have the game in hand as it seems to now.



I will be quoting our First Sea Lord on this this weekend. It is easy to remember, especially for those unfamiliar with AoS maneuvering.

Just be careful with your references to masts ;) lol

Cool Breeze
01-07-2014, 14:43
Bump!

For two reasons...

1.) This is very good info and great starting idea for everyone who just got their game and may be feeling overwhelmed. It worked amazingly well for my demos at iCon.

2.) The server shift zapped the pictures. Keith, any chance you still have them and can put them back in the OP?

7eat51
01-07-2014, 14:47
Here are other links regarding running convention games:

http://sailsofglory.org/showthread.php?1692-Convetion-Demo-game-issues&highlight=convention
http://sailsofglory.org/showthread.php?1213-Convention-Game-Help-Needed&highlight=convention

Cool Breeze
01-07-2014, 15:19
Here are other links regarding running convention games:

http://sailsofglory.org/showthread.php?1692-Convetion-Demo-game-issues&highlight=convention
http://sailsofglory.org/showthread.php?1213-Convention-Game-Help-Needed&highlight=convention

Yes, those are good as well (I replied to one back when it was active), I highly recommend them.

I'd still love it if Keith could put the photos back in this one though because, as they say, a picture is worth a thousand words. ;)

The Royal Hajj
01-08-2014, 09:22
I'll try to make time to fix them along with all my other photos.

Nightmoss
01-08-2014, 09:54
I'll try to make time to fix them along with all my other photos.

So, have you given up on restoration of all photos prior to the hack? As I've said before I can restore my photo album reasonably easily, but I didn't want to start that and compromise whatever you might be trying to do.

Cool Breeze
01-08-2014, 10:18
I'll try to make time to fix them along with all my other photos.

Thanks!


I knew you were working on it, and didn't want to sound impatient, but felt this set would be a good one to move higher up on the lst if you still had them, as I knew it helped us a lot in the demos we did, and I feel it would greatly benefit the community to use as a good jumping off point for their first few games with mates who haven't read the rules. Seeing as my demos were way back in early October, and I've played several new games since, I couldn't perfectly recreate what you had off just the text alone or I would throw up some pics of my own.

The Royal Hajj
01-08-2014, 10:27
So, have you given up on restoration of all photos prior to the hack? As I've said before I can restore my photo album reasonably easily, but I didn't want to start that and compromise whatever you might be trying to do.

I most likely will come the end of the weekend if I don't have it sorted by than. I seem to have stumped the experts into silence :(

Cool Breeze
01-08-2014, 10:38
I most likely will come the end of the weekend if I don't have it sorted by than. I seem to have stumped the experts into silence :(

Stumped 'Net Ninjas...

The only thing more silent than regular ninjas. :sly:

SeaRoyal20
01-08-2014, 11:06
Great flow. This works for both saiors new to the game and for first time sailors.