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koltes

Guide to solo piracy or how to hunt with a style

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Really great guide @koltes, and good additions as well from @Prater, @Iroquois Confederacy and @Hodo. All players whose posts I can see great wisdom in, reinforcing my own experiences as a solo hunter.

For my part, I have always played in this solo style, and while I have nowhere near as many hours as Koltes and Prater do, my ~600hrs have been dedicated entirely to this kind of play. So, I'll offer my additions / observations / opinions for what they're worth.

The Neverending Puzzle
One of the most interesting things about the solo hunter playstyle is how much of a puzzle game it becomes. You need to find the right places to hunt, you need to anticipate your quarry and their movements, you need to anticipate the sheep dogs and their attempts to trap you, and you need to figure out your logistics to tie the whole thing together. Koltes has given some great suggestions about how to go about sorting this out, so no need to reiterate.

One thing, though: the player population is changing all the time, as are port owners, and the expansion and contraction of national territories tied to each can create and destroy hunting grounds depending on who owns them or has moved in near them. So, facts that were known a few days/weeks/months ago may still apply, or they may not. You really have to go there and do your scouting to find out.

On Hunting Grounds
Some areas of the map are much easier to hunt than others, due to the way the ports are aligned, the coastline is laid out, and the resources of the ports are configured. Some areas can be a deathtrap as there are many nearby ports that, if owned by the nation whose players you are hunting, can lead to the easy formation of sheepdog revenge squads that can close in on you from all sides. Other areas offer easier access to escape into the open sea where you will be much harder to intercept. Additionally, areas that are active in one time zone's primetime may be nearly dead in another. You need to find that "goldilocks" combination of a reasonable chance of success combined with a reasonable population of player traders to hunt in your prime gaming time.

Capping vs Sinking
I personally really like the challenge of capping player trade ships for later sale to the market, so I rarely sink a ship I've captured and am in fact pretty loathe to do so unless I'm fairly certain I'll need to make a hasty escape. I will often go through the cargo if possible, discard the least valuable / heaviest items to help make the prize ship a bit faster. And then one of my favorite parts of the whole process begins: the super stressful and exciting crawl back to your base of operations, hoping you escape notice and bring home your prize. It feels like nothing so much as being a leopard on the African savanna, trying to make off with your kill before the lions steal it away from you. I love it.

You won't get as many (or any) combat marks for doing this, but consider the math... if the capped TBrig sells for 40-60k at market, and combat marks can be bought for 1k each, you can potentially purchase 40-60 combat marks with the earnings from selling the ship, whereas sinking it will only net you 2 combat marks. Can you capture 20 TBrigs in the time it takes to sell one at market?

Also, as I'll mention below, I sail only unrated vessels while hunting, and I do not like overloading my hunting ship as it makes it very difficult to get away. I'd rather have the captured prize in fleet, and sink it, than hobble my fast hunter and turn it into easy meat for the sheepdogs. So I keep the prizes and sell them later.

Hunting Ships, Upgrades, Cannons, Repairs and Perks
Because I focus on capping traders and taking them as a prize, I find I need to really focus on bringing sail repairs, as I'll need to repair not only my own sails (either during battle or afterwards) but also those of the trader who I have captured. Failing to do this means I will be much more subject to revenge interception, as the trade ship will sail very slowly unless its sails are repaired. Curiously, despite "splurging" on fir/fir builds, almost all of the traders I capture do not carry sails repairs. When you're already sailing a vessel worth 50k or more in a capital market, the idea that spending 1/10 of that value on sail repairs seems like trivial insurance to try to hedge your chances of getting away, but most seem to "YOLO" it and do without altogether, so they can maximize the amount of cargo carried. I can't say I understand it, but I guess it improves their bottom line, and certainly my own, as it makes them much easier for me to catch.

Now, because I must bring enough sail repairs for both my ship and my quarry, I need to really optimize the rest of my loadout and ship upgrades. Like Prater and Hodo, I hunt exclusively in the Lynx and Privateer, with the latter being my favorite despite its poor downwind performance. I run Optimized Ballast and a Gazelle figurehead as a minimum, as well as 4lb long cannons, which I prefer to 6lb mediums as they are just a bit lighter and nearly as effective. And they reload much faster than 6lb longs, which I feel is important. You want your reload time to be less than your stern camping 180* turn time, so you can fire as soon as you've made your turn and can keep your speed lower and your s-turns tighter, making it much harder for the quarry to hit you with broadsides. I also carry some Hull Repairs and Rum, with the goal being to keep my Privateer or Lynx at 15kts max speed while still having enough repairs to do my work successfully.

My preferred perks: Fleet 1, Area Control, Prepared and Rigging Specialist are mandatory for my playstyle. I am undecided about Double Charge vs Double Shot, though I think the former would be better for my small ships (every bit of extra penetration would help those 4lb longs). Fleet 2 is also tempting for those times when you hate having to choose one of the two ships you've captured. I'd rather sink neither, to be honest.

Escorts in Fleet: Deterrent or Opportunity?
One thing I didn't see mentioned above was that many traders will bring along a warship in fleet to provide some measure of defense. Sometimes, however, they make a mistake and bring a good upwind warship (i.e. Lynx, Privateer, etc.) along with a good downwind tradeship (i.e. TBrig). When I see this, and that the player trader is on the trade ship and leaving the AI to command the warship, then I see it as a free warship for me to capture. In almost all cases, the player will command the NPC warship in his fleet to attack me, and I will happily sail upwind - dragging the NPC warship after me - and then chain its sails and board it while the player in the trade ship escapes. Granted, the warship might not be worth as much as the player trade vessel, but on the other hand, I've just acquired a "disposable" backup hunting ship that I can use to do some extra silly / risky things that I'd rather not commit my main hunting vessel to. In either case, the "threat" the fleet warship is meant to represent is not interpreted by me as anything to be afraid of, but rather as another opportunity for gain.

It Is Better To See Than To Be Seen
Whenever I am in the open world, I am constantly swiveling my camera 360 degrees and clicking on every sail I see. I used to assume that this is what everyone does, but with time I've realized that many, especially when they are in their "safe" home waters, get a bit lazy about this. They are not AFK per se, they are simply "cruising", like how sometimes happens when you're on a long drive on the highway and you realize you've been driving for a few minutes without any consciousness of doing so. Maybe they are tabbed out, maybe they are chatting, who knows, who cares.

This has many implications: I can sometimes simply sail up to someone, get in position, and tag them and they only react once they see the circle go around their ship. Other times, it means I can tuck my ship into a part of the coastline where I am more-or-less in plain sight, yet I will watch as ship after ship sails right past me, without taking any notice whatsoever... because, in their mind, there's "nothing interesting" about that stretch of coast they've sailed past countless times, and they somehow fail to even think that something might be hiding there, waiting to pounce, so they don't bother even looking (they're probably scanning the other way, to the open sea, or who knows what). It's kind of amazing and adrenaline-pumping when it happens, and it happens a lot!

Likewise, because I am constantly scanning, it is extremely rare that I am myself caught by surprise, and I often see other people well before they've seen me. One thing I learned while hunting around Jamaica with @Jarlath Morrow is that you really want to avoid being seen if at all possible. Smart players will quickly announce your position via their National chat and then all the traders will bunker down till you've been caught or left the area, and the sheepdogs will come out in full force hoping to kill you (as they should). Which means that I'll often tack or gybe away from a player character I spot, extending off in the other direction in hopes that they'll have missed me and fail to report my position. Quite often, it seems I am successful, as I later find traders sailing nearby, seemingly without any awareness that a pirate is operating in the area (of course, reports to national chat are only helpful if you actually read them).

The Myth of the Defenseless Trader
There is a great deal of arrogance and disdain expressed against those who hunt player trade ships, as these hunters are believed to be attacking "defenseless easy prey" and the ensuing fight to capture the trader prize is "not PVP."  Based on my experience, when I hear someone make these claims, I am pretty confident they have never tried done much if any hunting, certainly not in a 7th rate, nor as a solo player, with only the ship and upgrades they have created/earned/grinded themselves (i.e. without the benefit of their clan's community resources). Really, if you've never hunted alone, in enemy waters, with no clanmates to back you up, you are in no position to say anything about what this kind of hunting is like, because you simply don't know. Those who hunt know better, and do not say such things.

So let me come out and say it: even prior to the patch that allowed traders to be fully armed, they were far from defenseless. I have had traders try to ram and capsize me, I have had them try to break my bowsprit off, I have had them engage in all kinds of wild behaviors as they throw caution to the wind and do anything and everything they can to stop me, by any means necessary. And this was before they had cannons! Very few are passive and most will never surrender no matter how hopeless the odds, happy to see their ship sink or explode or otherwise, if it means depriving me of a prize.

The Lynx continues to be very easy to capsize and the danger is greatest when you attempt to turn the trade ship into the wind. If you mistime your push, you can easily get caught under the bow of the trader and in only a matter of 2-3 seconds be on your side in an unrecoverable broach. Is is especially dangerous if you have not sufficiently chained down the trader's sails, but even then the danger persists. The Privateer is a bit better but not immune, though its greater mass means the margin for error is a bit higher.

Obviously, a Surprise is a different kettle of fish altogether, and these issues facing the unrated ships are not considerations. However, Koltes has done a good job of describing the many challenges facing the Surprise captain - as the ships themselves are so competent, they are guaranteed to draw revenge fleets, so they come with their own set of issues. And while I have yet to capture a player trader in an LGV or Indiaman (as I very rarely see them), I am sure it presents a genuine challenge to the Surprise captain and isn't simply "easy meat."

In any event, now that traders can be fully armed, they can be quite dangerous to unrated hunting ships fitted for speed, at least if their captains are competent at sailing and shooting. The only time I've been sunk by another player since wipe (roughly 200hrs of gameplay in which I've captured dozens of player trader prizes) was when I persisted too long in attempting to capture a TBrig sailed by a very competent British player who was an excellent shot, too. I could and should have broken off my attack, but I kept going for "just one more pass" rather than taking a cold and rational look at my ship's condition and realizing the capture was hopeless. Suffice to say, if you come across a competent captain, that trade ship can be a very worthy opponent. I've had better fights from armed traders than I have from warships, by far. Much more tactical, much more challenging, much closer of a match. They are defenseless only to the extent they choose to be.

Which brings up another interesting observation: like with sail repairs, many traders chose to go unarmed, or with only stern cannons. Why this is the case, I have no idea. I've also seen instances where a trader has cannons, but forgets to use them. Far be it from me to tell him otherwise, but it still sort of boggles the mind. I suppose it's a sort of min-maxing theory: no repairs, no cannons, full cargo, damn the horses and go for it. Works for me.

Stick To Your Plan (Or You'll Plan To Fail)
It takes time and practice, as Koltes notes, to come up with a system for capturing ships successfully. While learning to tag, or prevent ships from escaping, or to chain sails, or to grape, or whatever, you will fail many times. Sometimes you will sink. Many times you will be mocked in battle chat as your quarry slips away and you find yourself, due to the mistakes in your approach and execution, incapable of doing anything about it. Prepare to be humiliated, as this is part of the learning process.

Later, once you've got things sort of figured out, and you feel like you know more-or-less what you're doing, you may start thinking you can improvise, or "do things a little different this time." Actually, you probably can't. The system you developed through all those failures is probably a good one, and better than what you try to make up on the spot, and it's one you should stick to in most cases. Failing to do so is courting disaster (see my anecdote about getting my hunting ship sunk above). Most importantly, know when to call off an attack - be it at the tagging phase, or during battle, or when you have to sink a ship to get away (be it in battle instance or later in the OW). Your hunting ship is the most important and hardest to replace tool in your arsenal, and you must try to protect it at all costs. You will always be able to find new prey, probably just a few minutes later, but it might take hours to replace a heavily customized hunter, especially if playing solo. Try to stay cool and calm and make this choice - to break off the attack or not - a business decision first and foremost.

Summary
I've gone and written a small book, and apologies for that. But this thread was long overdue, and I'm very pleased at the high quality of content presented. Kudos to @koltes for the initiative. I hope my own contribution is helpful for those considering the truly solo hunting approach. The rewards are well worth it; it is a unique and singular experience within Naval Action, one that few allow themselves to experience. So much the better for those of us who do... but, the world is out there, and it's yours for the taking, if you're captain enough to do it.

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1 hour ago, koltes said:

I have never ever hunted in fore-to-aft ships. I don't know how to make money sailing them to be honest

 

I have made ~1,000,000 in the past 5-6 days of playing, exclusively in small ships. My biggest haul was a couple days ago, around 200k between cargo and ship.

But really, as you note, it's not about the number, it's about the experience, and solo hunting in little ships is great fun, even if you're "only" capping TBrigs and TLynxes and fighting other unrated warships.

For my part, I positively love schooners in real life, and how they sail in Naval Action, and for me, they are end game content. No, really. I have a couple Surprises, including one very fast one, and can do fine with manual sailing (though I'm certainly no master), but those larger ships just really don't do it for me, aesthetically or otherwise. I am completely addicted to sailing closehauled at 34kts in a Privateer and there's simply nothing I can do about it. "I'm in love" etc.

I will pretty soon be able to captain a 4th rate, and I may get a Connie just for the heck of it, but honestly it will just be a harbor queen (along with the Santa Cecilia I got from participating in the AI LGV contest). My hunting ships will remain Privateers and Lynxes as they are the ships of my dreams.

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5 hours ago, Benedict Ahhnold said:

 

Hunting Ships, Upgrades, Cannons, Repairs and Perks
Because I focus on capping traders and taking them as a prize, I find I need to really focus on bringing sail repairs, as I'll need to repair not only my own sails (either during battle or afterwards) but also those of the trader who I have captured. Failing to do this means I will be much more subject to revenge interception, as the trade ship will sail very slowly unless its sails are repaired. Curiously, despite "splurging" on fir/fir builds, almost all of the traders I capture do not carry sails repairs. When you're already sailing a vessel worth 50k or more in a capital market, the idea that spending 1/10 of that value on sail repairs seems like trivial insurance to try to hedge your chances of getting away, but most seem to "YOLO" it and do without altogether, so they can maximize the amount of cargo carried. I can't say I understand it, but I guess it improves their bottom line, and certainly my own, as it makes them much easier for me to catch.

 

 

As a trader I would like to explain the reasoning I personally dont bother with sail repairs or even cannons for that matter. With the new speed mechanics you trader loaded with cargo is slow anyway and when you read the setup of the solo raider you realize that if you get caught there is very little chance of escape unless you can force them into a bad tag and even if you do that then you still have to deal with the retag (see other topics on the whole issue of retagging). So if you accept that being caught means losing then you take steps to mitigate loss, sail repairs and cannons cost money and are unlikely to change the outcome of the battle.

On my dedicated trader alt I tend to go with the numbers game of sailing with 3 trader vessels, if caught by a solo raider then I do my best to have him chase me while my other 2 traders escape, so I lead him away from them. My aim is to keep the raider engaged long enough and get him far enough away from my fleet that they can escape even if they are using the control perk. If he goes after one of my fleet vessels I get the other one to follow me and we head off in a different direction. If I am successful, I lose only 1/3 of my ships and cargo. Depending on the cargo I am hauling I also like to mix it up so that the most expensive cargo is in one ship, that way it is a bit of a gamble that the good stuff will get away.

Another tip for traders is not to sail along the coast if you can help it. It may give you more protection from the coastal forts but the raiders know the weak points in the coastal defenses and that is where they will wait for you. With the current lack of GPS positioning anyone out at sea for an extended amount of time moving round on different courses will eventually not be too sure of exactly where they are or will have to constantly recheck their position using a third party site, this is a distraction for them. So when you sail get clear of the coast as quick as possible till you are well out of sight of land and then calculate where to make your alteration of course to head to your destination. The distance in the trader tool can help here. This way even if you are spotted by an alt leaving port they do not know where you are heading.

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18 minutes ago, Archaos said:

As a trader I would like to explain the reasoning I personally dont bother with sail repairs or even cannons for that matter. With the new speed mechanics you trader loaded with cargo is slow anyway and when you read the setup of the solo raider you realize that if you get caught there is very little chance of escape unless you can force them into a bad tag and even if you do that then you still have to deal with the retag (see other topics on the whole issue of retagging). So if you accept that being caught means losing then you take steps to mitigate loss, sail repairs and cannons cost money and are unlikely to change the outcome of the battle.

On my dedicated trader alt I tend to go with the numbers game of sailing with 3 trader vessels, if caught by a solo raider then I do my best to have him chase me while my other 2 traders escape, so I lead him away from them. My aim is to keep the raider engaged long enough and get him far enough away from my fleet that they can escape even if they are using the control perk. If he goes after one of my fleet vessels I get the other one to follow me and we head off in a different direction. If I am successful, I lose only 1/3 of my ships and cargo. Depending on the cargo I am hauling I also like to mix it up so that the most expensive cargo is in one ship, that way it is a bit of a gamble that the good stuff will get away.

Another tip for traders is not to sail along the coast if you can help it. It may give you more protection from the coastal forts but the raiders know the weak points in the coastal defenses and that is where they will wait for you. With the current lack of GPS positioning anyone out at sea for an extended amount of time moving round on different courses will eventually not be too sure of exactly where they are or will have to constantly recheck their position using a third party site, this is a distraction for them. So when you sail get clear of the coast as quick as possible till you are well out of sight of land and then calculate where to make your alteration of course to head to your destination. The distance in the trader tool can help here. This way even if you are spotted by an alt leaving port they do not know where you are heading.

Yep, this is exactly the line of thinking I figured was behind the no repairs, no cannons strategy.

For my part, I'm completely content with the idea that I'll at best capture one ship, so I usually either pick the player (so I get the best fight possible) or, if he/she is too far away, then the closest AI. It's a business case for me, too; I know I can't catch them all, so I just focus on catching one to make my money and be on my way. Sometimes I get skunked, sometimes the ship is full of expensive trade goods. It's all part of the fun. I'm at times tempted to ask which they care least about losing, since it's all pure profit for me I don't really care too much either way which of the ships I get, I'm making my money (and hence, sustaining my playstyle) regardless :)

Edit to add: you can probably see that this is really about the hunting for me, not the money or any meaningful pretense to an RVR component. So long as I stay in ships and can get the stuff I need to keep going (mainly just repairs and cash), there's really not a true larger purpose behind my raiding. The materials (if any) that I capture can be regenerated quickly, the ships I capture replaced, etc. I like to think I provide a bit of excitement for the traders, and of course, I become the hunted as soon as I have to sail back my prize, so I very much understand what it feels like to have the shoe on the other foot. It's pretty darn fun, to be honest.

Edited by Benedict Ahhnold

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Reno is actually pretty good even with speed cap. Its cheap and it doesn't require any speed perma mods other then gazele to go 15.

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13 hours ago, koltes said:



Question: can you or how many or have you ever captured an Indiaman in for-to aft rigger? I'm genuinely interested to know. If you are and you give me more info I will add this to the guide with a credit to you
@Prater same here. What is the biggest fish can you get in your Linx or other for-to-aft?

My point was that you are not there to kill traders only. I want to fight larger ships.
My biggest kill on 5th rate was 2nd rate. Never had a chance to fight 3rd rate, but I sunk countless 4th rates in it (connies, aggys).
Heavy 5th rates are also dead meat - Trincs, Idefatigables all go down in 2-3 stern rakes.

 

Being a fore-aft captain also, I can say it is possible to take LGVs, and Indiamen.  LGVs are usually the largest I will hunt in a Privateer, or a Lynx.  Most of the time I will stick to t-brigs or t-snows and running down t-lynxs.   But you have a MUCH better turn rate than the Indiamen,  and you are faster at all points of sail than them if they are loaded.  It is doubtful you will see a full indiamen over 11kn in battle.   So running one down is not an issue.   

It is taking the crew down enough to board it.  You can easily get it below 100men, but then you will be working REAL hard to kill 30-40 more men off that ship.    But with the morale bonus of the Lynx and Privateer, when added with the melee training bonus, and if you must rum rations.. but the other better melee options are available.  Again avoid marines not worth the crew hit.    Your biggest advantage is speed and constant rate of fire. 

Hunting in a fore-aft rigged ship takes a bit more patience and forethought than most 5th rates which you can get away with just sailing up along side and hammering it till it surrenders.   (not that you would or should)  

The Snow is a good, go between when you cant afford a Surprise but dont want to sail a fore-aft rigged ship.  You can get away upwind in most cases.  You have enough firepower to take on every trade ship with ease, and you can out turn or out run anything else.  

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great and interresting guide.

Unfortunately it also points out how broken the speed mechanic is, and for some reason,  I suddenly just dont feel like playing today. :( 

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40 minutes ago, dagdriver said:

great and interresting guide.

Unfortunately it also points out how broken the speed mechanic is, and for some reason,  I suddenly just dont feel like playing today. :( 

The current speed meta is one of my biggest complaints about this patch.  I knew it was going to be an issue when they introduced it.  But I figured I would try it out.  Now that I have, I can say... no sir I dont like it.

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16 hours ago, Zoky said:

Reno is actually pretty good even with speed cap. Its cheap and it doesn't require any speed perma mods other then gazele to go 15.

The trouble starts when you were ganked and have to survive. Reno can only achieve its full speed in a very specific POS window at 135° being the best.
SailingProfileRENOMMEE.png

Problem is that all other square riggers also have this as their best point of sail and because everyone is now doing same max speed the Connie will be able to keep up with Reno. Eventually her sails will be shredded and she will get caught. Before patch Reno was at least 2kn faster than any other ships so disengaging on the same POS was not a problem.

I myself really prefer Renommee over Surprise for her handling and pure esthetics. However at this point and time I had to look hard and choose the ship that does the job better which is the Surprise imho
I really hope that devs will remove the cap and drop all mods/upgrades/skill knowledge bonuses by 1 %. It would balance itself out
 

7 hours ago, Hodo said:

The current speed meta is one of my biggest complaints about this patch.  I knew it was going to be an issue when they introduced it.  But I figured I would try it out.  Now that I have, I can say... no sir I dont like it.

Yeah same here.
WHEN or IF they will remove the cap and re-balance speeds so fast ships are fast and bigger slower ships are just slower I will update the guide with the new info.
Until then its a valuable peace of information that is current

Edited by koltes

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I love the guide and the follow ups from you and peers.

It will be read and re-read time again thank you for the huge effort involved in these things.

 

Norfolk.

 

 

Edited by Norfolk nChance

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Great job, koltes!

This guide is very interesting and useful! Thanks a lot!

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Well written, thought out and helpful. Even to new players like myself, I can see where you're coming from and it doesn't confuse

 

good stuff

 

hilts

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MEGA!

@koltes Thanks for sharing and explanation, that's really very useful. I just need to hope that I won't forget most of things you described  :lol:

I like very much how you wrote about player's manner, etiquette, ethics and his relation to another captains no matter if a player attacks or being attacked. That's really nice to see such call from you to the players because there is sometime really a lack of polite and respectfull participants. Unfortunately..

Maybe you need to try yourself in Rise of Flight - the flight-simulator game about World War I Planes? There are 90% players same as you have meant - just gentlemen with respect to themselves and opponents.

Salute!

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On ‎7‎/‎10‎/‎2017 at 10:39 PM, koltes said:

Hmm haven't thought of using Marines and 6pd mediums. Good point man. That would definitely work.
My only issue with mediums is that if you end up in equal fight like Surp vs Surp you will have hard time hitting him. He will be able to control the distance and hit you from a far. When your sails are gone and whats more you have used you rep he will get in close and rake. But I guess knowing this weakness you would not get into fight with such opponent in the first place :) 

 

I would say when are you up against a similar Surprise? I suggest very rarely now. You hunt a specific area with certain targets in. So too does @Iroquois Confederacy. The Surprise that comes up against either and alone I suggest would probably weaker on all areas. Long or mediums to you would be a small issue. Your speed controls the distance his will be heavier…

To hunt either of you turns into an issue of getting you pinned down, and staying pinned. My addiction forces me to use the wrong craft but not impossible. Would I use a Surprise? Probably not I feel I need something heavier Essex… Belle Poule (with all her faults) ….

Just a thought

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You mentioned Muskets & Pistols and Boarding cannons. How viable are those really? How does it fare against marines if you don't have marines?

Great guide by the way. +1

Edited by Captain Lust

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Mediums will do more damage, require less crew, fire faster.  I've been undergunning raiders for 2 years now.  Your guns might do less damage than your opponent's guns, but that won't matter much when they bounce off your sides and you send your broadside through the enemy's stern.  In long outdrawn fights you might wish for heavier guns, but as a raider whose defense is speed and not wood/hp, you want to avoid long drawn out fights where you are trading broadsides.

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22 minutes ago, Prater said:

Mediums will do more damage, require less crew, fire faster.  I've been undergunning raiders for 2 years now.  Your guns might do less damage than your opponent's guns, but that won't matter much when they bounce off your sides and you send your broadside through the enemy's stern.  In long outdrawn fights you might wish for heavier guns, but as a raider whose defense is speed and not wood/hp, you want to avoid long drawn out fights where you are trading broadsides.

Sometimes  I will draw out a hunt in battle in hopes of reducing damage by talking them into a surrender.   But I intentionally sail ships with high crew margins so I have room to put bigger long guns on specifically for mast removal.

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Kudos for the very useful guide. 

A very interesting note comparison from the perspective of far less experience. 

This isn't just a guide for the pirate, but also a guide for the competent guard. 

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On ‎7‎/‎10‎/‎2017 at 0:44 AM, koltes said:

...As a trader you will always make more money. Always… Unless you keep running into me of course. Then its the other way around, but no one is that stupid :)
Before you decide to go solo you need to make a call of what is more important to you. What are your ultimate goals in this game. Some people play to accumulate in-game assets. They are awesome at trading, finding those sweet deals and avoid seadogs like you and me. They make millions of cash and every day that they play they make 10 times more than you do. I’m ok with that. Are you? The way they experience PVP is by setting aside a budget that they happy to invest into PVP experience. In their mind they have already lost or prepare to lose this money/assets. Because of that they don’t like to go over that budget so if they have sunk too many times we won’t see them PVPing as active until they fit within their budget again.

....

 

Wow, best description I have ever seen on this forum.  Great simple summary.

All except for that thing about running into you, lol.

 

My take on this is:  the battle is engaged PRIOR to you and me (or other privateer) running into each other.  If you've seen me, or more succinctly if you've seen me and caught me, then I have not done my job as a trader, or screwed up at least.  But BTW if you do see me, and then overtake me, you won't be getting an easy win, lol.  However, if you do defeat me you got anything I'm carrying.  ;)

Edited by Jean Ribault

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16 hours ago, Norfolk nChance said:

I would say when are you up against a similar Surprise? I suggest very rarely now. You hunt a specific area with certain targets in. So too does @Iroquois Confederacy. The Surprise that comes up against either and alone I suggest would probably weaker on all areas. Long or mediums to you would be a small issue. Your speed controls the distance his will be heavier…

To hunt either of you turns into an issue of getting you pinned down, and staying pinned. My addiction forces me to use the wrong craft but not impossible. Would I use a Surprise? Probably not I feel I need something heavier Essex… Belle Poule (with all her faults) ….

Just a thought

When I now meet Iroqu we just greet each other and chat. If we meet on the hunting grounds we devide the area or one will leave depending on situation. Mutual respect goes long way. I think we both know we gonna have a pretty equal fight. Who knows who will win. Do we both want to find out? Probably not :)

If we have to fight we will. Else we are hunters and our targets are traders and lone fighters

In terms of hunting us, you will need to bring super fast surp and the captain needs to be very good with the wind. We have 360degrees so there is a lot of directuons we can run to. To catch me more or less every time you will need at least 3 surps of the same speed and captains be on same TS, know what they doing and have a plan. Else its my own fk up or your luck. Those comes offen enough so dont stop trying :) 

 

16 hours ago, Captain Lust said:

You mentioned Muskets & Pistols and Boarding cannons. How viable are those really? How does it fare against marines if you don't have marines?

Great guide by the way. +1

Very. Not as high as marines, but you have more chances to win each round with them.

Also you are not boarding full crew on full crew.

Just recently I have killed a connie killing first its crew from 450 down to 220. When I boarded we had almost the same crew, but his moral was really low. Even with marines his damage was reduced.

Other reason why I personally dont like marines is because of the preparation cost of the attack. 

 

14 hours ago, Tenet said:

This isn't just a guide for the pirate, but also a guide for the competent guard. 

I know right :D 

Edited by koltes

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On 2017. 07. 10. at 6:44 AM, koltes said:

This will achieve the most important thing - you will become ok with sinking. You will stop being afraid of sinking. Being ganked or losing the fight will not have a negative effect on your fighting abilities. And most importantly instead of getting upset and being salty with your enemies you will actually enjoy being sunk due to having challenging game and would congratulate your opponent, which means you will ALWAYS get pleasurable experience from the game no matter if you won or lost the fight.
Get the right attitude and not only your skill will improve, but also your gaming experience.

+1

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The best ship for Solo Hunting is: LGV

  • With smuggler flag on you can dock any port
    • revenge fleet pointless if u are able to dock their port
    • can take pause anywhere
    • can repair cheap
    • can sell the loot
  • 3 knowledge already open
  • Can be fast as the surprise
  • Better turning
  • Better sailing profile
  • 1900 cargo means the repairs wont make you slower
  • Fewer guns but u have crew for Marines
  • Can buy almost anywhere a new ship

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- chaser is a serious drawback but if u tag in good position u can handle

+ bottle is welcome can take up the wreck loot anywhere and sell nearest port

+ most player careless when saw a single LGV

attack magnet is good :) so good

captured Constitution and the fate of the revernge fleet

RL_vs_spain_2017_0712_2.png

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