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Thread: 2015 Solo Campaign Discussions

  1. #1
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    Default 2015 Solo Campaign Discussions

    Hello Everyone,

    Starting in January, we will embark on a year-long solo campaign comprised of 12 monthly scenarios. Participants will choose a side for which they want to sail - British or French. Participants will take turns developing a monthly scenario, and all participants will sail such scenarios and write associated AARs. The scenarios need not be actual reenactments; they can be adapted from historical engagements or be completely fictitious, but plausible, situations. What is required in each scenario is the use of released ship types, for example a British third rate vs. two French frigates, without the use of specific ship names; given the diversity among participant collections, the more generic the ship requirements, the better.

    For the first few months, at the least, we will use the basic set of solo rules. As the year progresses, we can add more advanced rules as they are developed; the solo campaign provides an opportunity to test new rules.

    Each participant will develop a roster of ship captains, and based on scenario outcomes, those captains can accrue skills/abilities. If you are interested in participating, please let me know. I am in the process of moving the previous rosters to a new googlesheet under a new gmail account. Any solo scenarios played during 2014 with submitted rosters will count toward captain advancement; for those currently sailing under non-British or French flags, a simple name change could be made if desired. For 2015, though, we'll be keeping to British and French navies.

    If you are willing to write a scenario, please let me know for which month.

    We will use this forum to flesh things out during December. At the end of the month, I will create additional forums with all the rules, etc.

    Rosters

    British
    • Eric (7eat51)
    • Neil (Union Jack)
    • Finn (TexSwede)
    • Charles (CSherrange)



    French
    • Jim (Nightmoss)
    • Matthias (spiessbuerger)
    • Kevin (Ozariig)
    • Jan (Jason)
    • John (Mycenius)



    Scenario Writing
    • January: Eric (7eat51)
    • February: Neil (Union Jack)
    • March: Jim (Nightmoss)
    • April: Eric (7eat51)
    • May:
    • June: Charles (CSherrange)
    • July: John (Mycenius)
    • August:
    • September:
    • October:
    • November:
    • December:
    Last edited by 7eat51; 02-23-2015 at 00:53.
    “You can discover more about a person in an hour of play than in a year of conversation.” ― Plato

  2. #2
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    I will update the captain rosters regarding experience during the transfer to the new gmail account. I will send invitations to participants as needed.
    “You can discover more about a person in an hour of play than in a year of conversation.” ― Plato

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    I'm up for this Eric and any month for me.

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    I was hoping this would be the case Neil - thanks. It will be exciting to play this with you. I miss playing OTT. Dave invited me in after the holidays, so I hope with the new year there will be new time for flying again.
    “You can discover more about a person in an hour of play than in a year of conversation.” ― Plato

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    I now have all the decks thanks to Steve and Anthony, so my Langtons can take to the sea with the correct decks to maneuver with. Having played 6 games with Anthony and 3 solo I am now getting to grip with some of the finer nuances of the rules.

  6. #6

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    Eric, is the 2015 solo campaign still planned? Attendance on the Anchorage is in serious decline and I don't think it's entirely the Holiday syndrome. So, if you think this is a no go I'm probably going to investigate the Wings Aerodrome solo campaigns and scenarios.

    That being said with my current roster I'll most likely be sailing for the British. Not sure if I'm ready for writing a scenario, but we'll see how things unfold in the near future.

    Thanks!

  7. #7
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    Hi Jim,

    Yes, it's a go. I have been sick this past week, so I am behind on uploading things. Actually, I am about to call the doctor's - time to go in to get some antibiotics, I believe; I haven't been able to shake this.

    I have been thinking about the lack of activity here. I am not sure what is on the horizon, but I hope we'll experience new wind in our sails. It has been a hard year for SoG - production problems and delays, lack of news, lack of releases, etc. I haven't followed things on BGG or elsewhere, but if this site is any indicator, Ares should be concerned. I fear some of the original supporters have moved on.

    I hope you had a pleasant Christmas.
    “You can discover more about a person in an hour of play than in a year of conversation.” ― Plato

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    I know I have not been in full time attendance myself, even though I've probally played the game more in the last 3 months than I ever have (and turned 4 people onto it as well).


    However, I would be interested in this campaign, as I need to get more into played the solo stuff to make me a better sailor. Also my job has gotten much less of a time sink.

    I would like to sail for whomever would need an extra person to make the sides even, as I have little care for a side, just want to play.

  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by 7eat51 View Post
    Hi Jim,

    Yes, it's a go. I have been sick this past week, so I am behind on uploading things. Actually, I am about to call the doctor's - time to go in to get some antibiotics, I believe; I haven't been able to shake this.

    I have been thinking about the lack of activity here. I am not sure what is on the horizon, but I hope we'll experience new wind in our sails. It has been a hard year for SoG - production problems and delays, lack of news, lack of releases, etc. I haven't followed things on BGG or elsewhere, but if this site is any indicator, Ares should be concerned. I fear some of the original supporters have moved on.

    I hope you had a pleasant Christmas.
    Christmas was nice and quiet, which is always preferable to me. Thanks!

    If you have the crud I've been dealing with since November 19th you definitely should head to the doctor for some antibiotics. While I feel better now I still have the annoying cough and sinus issues. Whatever it is I've been told it's all over Madison, if not the entire state/region, and it lasts at least a month if not more.

    I didn't mean to put undue pressure on you concerning the solo campaign, especially with your health and workload being what it is. Just take care of yourself and don't worry about SoG.

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    Jim, please know you are not putting undue pressure on me. I feel terrible not having been able to give more time to the solo stuff throughout the past few months. I apologize for letting all of you down in this.

    I went to prompt care, and now I am on antibiotics. Some of our neighbors were there as well, and other neighbors have been down for close to a month. Something nasty is happening here, too, Jim.

    The coughing is hurting the head. I will be happy when this is over.

    I hope you recover fully, soon, my Friend.
    “You can discover more about a person in an hour of play than in a year of conversation.” ― Plato

  11. #11
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    Sign me up, admiral

    I'm leaning towards the French, as no one has signed on for them yet. I'd like to try writing a Scenario, but maybe a little bit later in the year so I can see how it's done.

    I'm a newbie, but I should be able to acquire any ships I need for the monthly scenarios, so don't let me hold your imaginations back

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    Wonderful. There are other French players, some of whom are actually nice guys. :takeover:

    I will be in touch with the info I will need from you. I am trying to set up a new googledoc, but keep bouncing between work, the Aerodrome, and here.
    “You can discover more about a person in an hour of play than in a year of conversation.” ― Plato

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    I was able to transfer the googlesheet to a new gmail account - private and not work. If you are interested in playing in the 2015 solo campaign, please let me know, and for which side - British or French. If you submitted a roster previously, I will transfer your data over accordingly, and send you an invitation to the new googlesheet.

    I will spend time the next few days setting things up, and will post the first scenario once we're ready to go.
    “You can discover more about a person in an hour of play than in a year of conversation.” ― Plato

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    Much thanks for setting everything up, Eric. I'm looking forward to the first scenario.

  15. #15

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    Chaps, much as I'd like to take part in this I fear that "real life" will prevent me from giving it the attention it so richly deserves, so I shall have to pass. I shall, of course, look forward to reading the various Captain's reports to their respective Admiralties and Administrations with extreme interest.

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    I wanted to know what Solo play rules exist for SoG (if any).

    I did see a set in the Files Section. Is that what players that play SoG use to play solo?

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    That's what I use, Colby. I gave it a spin last night and I'm pretty sure the algorithm is a better sailor than I am

    I found another set of solo rules by Richard Bradley, but I haven't tried them out.

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    Thank you for the update Kevin.

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    at your service

    and a Happy New Year for all!

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    Hi Matthias,

    Please create a French roster. I will transfer credit from your Prussian roster, so you won't lose anything gained from the early solo missions.

    Glad you'll be aboard,
    Eric
    “You can discover more about a person in an hour of play than in a year of conversation.” ― Plato

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    Rosters in OP and googlesheet updated
    “You can discover more about a person in an hour of play than in a year of conversation.” ― Plato

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    Quote Originally Posted by David Manley View Post
    Chaps, much as I'd like to take part in this I fear that "real life" will prevent me from giving it the attention it so richly deserves, so I shall have to pass. I shall, of course, look forward to reading the various Captain's reports to their respective Admiralties and Administrations with extreme interest.
    You will be missed, David. We'll try to write engaging AARs.

    Best wishes with 2015.
    “You can discover more about a person in an hour of play than in a year of conversation.” ― Plato

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by colby_bimore View Post
    I wanted to know what Solo play rules exist for SoG (if any).

    I did see a set in the Files Section. Is that what players that play SoG use to play solo?
    Hi Colby,

    Let me know if you desire to join our solo campaign. I will help you set up a roster of captains. I played in a solo campaign on the Aerodrome for WoG; it was a great experience, and a great way to learn about the game and interact with fellow members.

    Cheers,
    Eric
    “You can discover more about a person in an hour of play than in a year of conversation.” ― Plato

  24. #24
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    I created a 2015 Solo Campaign sub-forum. Everything pertaining to the 2015 solo campaign will be located there: rules, links, scenarios, AARs, discussions, Q&A, etc.

    I renamed this thread, adding "Discussions".

    I will be reviewing rules, charts, etc., over the next day or two.

    I will be setting up ranks for the rosters for both navies; this will give us consistency across each player, and will enable us to use a promotion system for our ship captains. Any suggestions are welcome.

    What do you think of the following for a British roster of eight ship captains:

    Commodore
    Captain
    Captain
    Captain
    Commander
    Commander
    Lieutenant
    Lieutenant
    “You can discover more about a person in an hour of play than in a year of conversation.” ― Plato

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    Looks good to me, Eric. I suppose the French will have 8 equivalent ranks to start.

    Is there an advantage in game for a ship captain to have a higher rank? Or is it just too much of a headache if one person decides to have a more or less experienced roster?

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    One thing we could do regarding rank and benefit is to allow a certain number of ship captains to start with a captain ability, and require that they come from the upper ranks.

    For the French, folks have used the following schemas:

    Contre-amiral
    Capitaine de vaisseau
    Capitaine de frégate
    Capitaine de frégate
    Capitaine de frégate
    Capitaine de corvette
    Capitaine de corvette
    Lieutenant de vaisseau

    Chef d'escadre
    Capitaine de vaisseau
    Capitaine de frégate
    Capitaine de frégate
    Capitaine de frégate
    Capitaine de corvette
    Capitaine de corvette
    Lieutenant de vaisseau

    We should settle on a given schema, and one roughly equivalent to the British. Basically, a lower level senior officer, several at/near captain rank, and a couple junior officers.
    “You can discover more about a person in an hour of play than in a year of conversation.” ― Plato

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    I have updated the Personnel Rules post in the 2015 Solo Campaign Rules thread. There are a few items to be finalized:

    1. The rank structure for the British and French rosters, and the number of ship captains having the given ranks.
    2. The types of ships a given ranked ship captain can command.
    3. Promotion criteria, for example commanding a ship in five scenarios, or some such schema.
    4. Any type of awards or medals; these are different from accruing points that enable more abilities.

    Any suggestions?

    Personnel Rules is the first post in this thread.
    “You can discover more about a person in an hour of play than in a year of conversation.” ― Plato

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    An idea for promotion: The points work like prize money for the winning captain, with that he can buy favour and promotion.
    1. You start at whatever rank Eric has given you for your ship captains.
    2. You gain points by taking the total top row boxes on the enemy damage chart and take away your own damage.
    For example: Enemy ship has a total of 8 hull damage boxes. You defeat the enemy ship but take 4 hull damage boxes. You gain 4 points.
    3. To be promoted all criteria must be in place. ie to gain the rank of post captain your 'character' must have played at least 8 missions and have 50 points.
    4. Any Captains killed can be replaced by a lower 'character' but that 'character' can only gain a max of 1 promotion level.
    5. Any ship without a captain can promote the 1st Officer of that ship instead. But he will start at 0 points.

    Promotion........................................................POINTS
    Lieutenant Commanders...........................................0
    Commander upto 3 missions and................................5
    Commander over 3 missions and...............................10
    Captain min of 5 missions and .................................20
    Post Captain min of 8 missions and...........................50
    Commodore min of 8 missions and...........................100
    Rear Admiral of the Blue min of 10 missions and .......150
    Rear Admiral of the White min of 12 missions and......200

    Of course the points can be shuffled/amended as you see fit.

  29. #29

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    Quote Originally Posted by 7eat51 View Post
    I have updated the Personnel Rules post in the 2015 Solo Campaign Rules thread. There are a few items to be finalized:

    1. The rank structure for the British and French rosters, and the number of ship captains having the given ranks.
    2. The types of ships a given ranked ship captain can command.
    3. Promotion criteria, for example commanding a ship in five scenarios, or some such schema.
    4. Any type of awards or medals; these are different from accruing points that enable more abilities.

    Any suggestions?

    Personnel Rules is the first post in this thread.
    1. Rank structure for British and French seems fine as suggested. (As I'm sailing for the French as privateers I'm not sure which structure would be appropriate for my roster though?)
    2. At least for me as a campaign the various captains, etc., would not necessarily be starting out in 1st Rates. I think it's only natural that as you advance in experience you gain promotion opportunities in upgraded and more powerful ships. How this impacts the scenario writing might be a problem though?
    3. Neil's promotion criteria looks good to me. Would we want to tie captain abilities to be gained to this as well? I know in our initial test, ability advancement was tied to scenario victory conditions.
    4. Not too sure about awards outside of abilities advancements? How often did the English or French admiralty's award medals to captains and/or crew? Medals and awards are fun though so maybe there's something to be given for scenario completion or and entire campaign? If this is a full year campaign maybe give awards for seasons completed in the campaign?

    I'm open to all ideas and eventual implementations. I'm looking forward to some fun solo challenges and reading other AARs to see how folks do.

  30. #30
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    1. Jim, for ease, since your roster if fighting for the French, it will assume the same rank structure as the French, i.e. for all practical purposes, the captains are French - practical reasons, that is.

    2. The single highest ranking individual could start on 1st rates. Scenarios should be written somewhat generically so individuals can use what ships they have available. They can even be written with two groups in mind. When I post the first scenario, I will demonstrate what I mean, and will add a post explaining my rationale.

    3. I like the general tenor of Neil's suggestion. Let's kibitz on it and make a final decision by the end of the month - not urgent given no possibility for promotions during January.

    4. The medals are for the fictitious captains. There is a campaign participation medal for participants who meet that criteria. I will post that with the rules. It seems much of the medals I saw issued were awarded well after the associated engagement, so I am comfortable cutting this if that is the consensus.
    “You can discover more about a person in an hour of play than in a year of conversation.” ― Plato

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    If you desire to participate, please send me your roster and email address via a PM. I will update the googlesheet accordingly.
    “You can discover more about a person in an hour of play than in a year of conversation.” ― Plato

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    Sorry if I am missing something regarding the solo campaign?

    Is this intended for each player on both sides play the monthly scenario every month?

    AI movement is via the solitaire chart in the files section?

    To join make up 8 captains, and 8 AI captain, i.e. generate names and rank?

    Which rules? Basic/Standard/Advanced?

    What types of scenarios are you thinking? Will they be varied in strength to accommodate ownership? I have base plus a few additional ships.

    I only have a single (full) game under my belt at this point, so would be definite landsman.

  33. #33
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    Each player plays one scenario per month, writing an associated AAR.

    The player either sails for the British or the French. Provide eight names of ship captains, ranking them from highest to lowest; you can leave off the actual ranks, and once the rank structure is finalized, I will update the rosters accordingly. I will provide the rosters for the AI ships.

    The AI ships are governed by the solo charts and rules, being finalized now. The players' ships will use the appropriate solo rules, but maneuvers, etc., are planned as they would be in a face-to-face game.

    The scenarios will be somewhat generic regarding ship types to accommodate players' collections. I will write the first scenario accordingly, and will write some notes as to my logic.

    I played in a solo campaign on the Aerodrome; it was there that I really learned the rules. My fellow pilots were very gracious with their knowledge. In the end, the goal is to have fun in the context of a community. Mistakes happen all the time, and they are no big deal.
    “You can discover more about a person in an hour of play than in a year of conversation.” ― Plato

  34. #34

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    It all sounds good, Eric. The spreadsheet rosters are shaping up nicely. I'd actually forgotten some of my lesser crew names. Will be anxious to see what you come up with for scenario no. 1.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Nightmoss View Post
    Will be anxious to see what you come up with for scenario no. 1.
    Me too.

    Just kidding. I need to do some rewriting given discussions here.
    “You can discover more about a person in an hour of play than in a year of conversation.” ― Plato

  36. #36
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    Can't access the roster Eric.

  37. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by Union Jack View Post
    Can't access the roster Eric.
    PM me a current email address and I will try inviting again.
    “You can discover more about a person in an hour of play than in a year of conversation.” ― Plato

  38. #38
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    For the solo campaign,

    1. should the AI ships use ball ammo unless specifically indicated to do otherwise in a scenario's set up and victory conditions?
    2. should AI ships wait to close range or take shots as opportunities arise?
    3. should AI ships only use battle sails?

    Maybe midway through the year, we can add additional rules for some of the advanced options, e.g. boarding, sail settings, etc. We could use the upcoming months to discuss such items.

    One thing to keep in mind is that the ruleset cannot become too complex as only one person is managing everything while taking pictures and notes for the AAR. If ammo and sail settings can vary, we should develop simple rules to guide such things, and probably not concern ourselves too much with crew actions.
    “You can discover more about a person in an hour of play than in a year of conversation.” ― Plato

  39. #39
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    In sequence:

    1. Long range = ball, then appropriately change to whatever 'shot' is in range. AI will always fire what is best to fire.
    2. As there are no bonus' for double shot or first fire then take shots as opportunity arises.
    3. AI Ships to close using fastest sail setting then switch to battle sail automatically when close to or about to sail within range.

    I think the advantages would balance out over the game. Otherwise the AI will always be at a disadvantage, well nearly always.

  40. #40

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    1. Ball ammo.
    2. Fire whenever possible.
    3. Battle sail continually.

    From the couple of solo games I've played and posted as AAR's it was basic rules all the way and I don't think the AI ships were ever at a major disadvantage beyond maneuvering around objects like shoals, islands or coastlines. There's nothing saying we can't change this later, but I'm inclined to start simple and build on the basics.

    Scenario specific rules would change any of the above of course.

  41. #41
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    Thank you, resolved and working great.

    Quote Originally Posted by 7eat51 View Post
    PM me a current email address and I will try inviting again.

  42. #42
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    Wasn't commodore more of an "temporary" appointment denoting the senior captain in command of multiple vessels (with no admiral present) as opposed to an actual rank?

    What about being able to train crew by expending prize money/points? Like Aubrey spending his own money to put the crew through firing drills.

    I realize I am new to this, but have y'all given any thought to combining it somehow with the campaign released in the competition on Ares site?

  43. #43
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    Finn, we haven't discussed anything in relation to Ares. One thing about writing our own scenarios is the ability to customize what we do with the collections people, here, have.

    We discussed crew improvements, but decided in favor of sticking with captains due to ease, especially given the amount of crew loss. As the campaign proceeds, we can look at adding rules, or even experimenting in a given scenario.
    “You can discover more about a person in an hour of play than in a year of conversation.” ― Plato

  44. #44
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    We'll start with this,

    1. ball ammo unless otherwise specified in a scenario.
    2. fire whenever possible.
    3. start with battle sails and adjust as necessary, such as approaching coasts, etc.

    We should encourage folks not to write scenarios that take multiple, multiple turns just to close.
    “You can discover more about a person in an hour of play than in a year of conversation.” ― Plato

  45. #45
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    Any other thoughts on the following, found in post #2? Rules are found here: http://sailsofglory.org/showthread.p...Campaign-Rules

    1. Maneuvering
    2. Crew Damage Effects of Captains
    3. Capturing Captains
    4. Disengagement

    Any other thoughts on the Solo Maneuver Charts - in post #5?
    “You can discover more about a person in an hour of play than in a year of conversation.” ― Plato

  46. #46

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    Quote Originally Posted by 7eat51 View Post
    Any other thoughts on the following, found in post #2? Rules are found here: http://sailsofglory.org/showthread.p...Campaign-Rules

    1. Maneuvering
    2. Crew Damage Effects of Captains
    3. Capturing Captains
    4. Disengagement

    Any other thoughts on the Solo Maneuver Charts - in post #5?
    Eric, I'm biased because I've used these rules enough so that they're comfortable and seem to work well enough in the solo games I've played. Others might not feel the same?

    With that said:

    1. Maneuvering seems good using the charts and tables as worked on by Fred and others. If any scenario requires the AI to move towards a static object then Rolf's additional maneuver rules might need to be used?

    (There's also the issue of Richard Bradley's solo rules for maneuvering, which I've look at only briefly. They appear to use a similar formula as his Wings solo rules, which entails using separate charts depending on the AI's maneuver deck plus you have to factor in windward advantage. I'm more intrigued by the current WoG solo discussions involving the Universal Diceless Solo Deck. All of this for later discussion?)

    2. Crew damage effects can add up quickly and the effect on the Captain's can be devastating. Seems reasonable when you read actual accounts of battle, but the downside is getting attached to a captain, etc. only to lose him in battle. (Reading some of the recent Wings AAR's points out how much of a bummer that can be).

    3. Seems straight forward enough. I'm fine with it. Did we ever discuss ransoming your captains back should they be taken in battle?

    4. Also seems pretty clear and reasonable.

    The only thing I'd mention involves keeping track of nos. 2, 3 and 4. It's very easy to overlook them in the heat of battle, but they're all important enough that you really need to pay close attention to them.

    Thanks for all you work in moving this forward. Cheers!

  47. #47
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    Roster updated:

    British
    Eric (7eat51)
    Neil (Union Jack)
    Finn (TexSwede)

    French
    Jim (Nightmoss)
    Matthias (spiessbuerger)
    Kevin (Ozariig)
    “You can discover more about a person in an hour of play than in a year of conversation.” ― Plato

  48. #48
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    Similar to the critical hit deck we use on the aerodrome site I have uploaded (still in moderation) a pdf and word file (both the same) as an example of a Critical Wound Deck for Captains. The word file can be amended to suit. This may help in deciding whether you loose a captain outright or he lives that little bit longer to fight another day.

  49. #49
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    Can someone offer some clarification on disengaging AI ships? Do they head straight for their side of the play area, or do they continue to roll on the movement chart? I have just begun to test the solo rules, and ran into this situation. Also, how do you handle movement for ships that have collided / entangled, and are now free to move? Do they both perform a backing maneuver to get clear of one another?
    I have enjoyed they few games I have tested, but I am unsure if I am handling these situations correctly.

    Thanks for all the work you guys do in developing the solo game system.

  50. #50
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    Excited for this, the AI rules look good - looks like a possible candidate for a simple mobile app, pick ship locations, direction and distance (wind as a setting), and it would spit out the matching card number.

    For the player are we using the basic, standard or advanced rules? For time constraints (and being new) I was thinking of standard plus some optional rules plus wind if that is ok? I have been reading some AAR and some of the larger fleet actions, and from reading (don't have enough experience playing yet) that seemed to me a good balance. Looking for feedback on this, so please chime in one way or another.

    My fleet (and the enemy's ) received reinforcements today - so extra excited. Unfortunately Orient arrived with a broken foremast, but now I can field multiple SOLs on each side with a first rate in command Also could not resist some frigates but on the other hand turning "The answer to the ultimate question" only happens once in your lifetime" (which is what my wife said when I told her )

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