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Pirates! By WizKids
Arrgh matey, and welcome
aboard the brand spankin’ new Pojo Pirates by WizKids page.
The Seven Seas are a dangerous place, full of Buccaneers,
Privateers and Ghosts. Ye had better be tying off your yard
arms and battening down your hatches if you’re going to
survive on the high seas of the Spanish Main or the Crimson
Today, I’ll give a basic
overview of the game today. Next time I’ll look at the
standard crew abilities, and later on we’ll take a look at
some of the “named” crew and their special abilities. We’ll
be starting a Crew/Ship of the Day column very shortly.
With four packs you should have at least 8 ships, add up all your point totals for all your ships and divide by two, that should be your starting fleet total. Alternately you can just choose a 30-point starter game in which each player has a maximum of 30 points to build their fleet. Try to stay as close to that total as possible, but your first game should be a friendly one, just to get the rules down. Once you have the rules down, feel free to start the trash talking and cannon blasting!
After carefully building your ships, pick out your treasure coins and islands, each gold coin has a point value (from 1 to 6), and obviously, the player who collects the most points wins the game! For each 10 build points each player provides 1 island and 2 coins equaling 4 gold. So for a 30-point game you would have 6 total islands and 12 coins equaling 24 total gold. In addition to gold coins, there’s a bunch of “unique” treasures each with different game features. If you happen to get any “unique” treasure in your initial packs, just put it aside for later. Don’t worry if you don’t have enough islands, you can use an empty card from one of your ships, or another trading card for an island.
Next place your islands. The rule book states that each island can be no closer than 2 L measure from any other island, and no more than 4 L from any other one island. Players choose a Home Island and place the treasure on the remaining “Wild” islands. You start the game with all your fleet docked at your home island, and it ends when the last treasure has been collected, or your opponent has no more ships. Each ship in your fleet gets one action per turn. There are four different actions that can be done: Movement, Shooting, Repair, or Exploring at a wild island.
Ah, but how do you collect treasure or blow up your opponent’s ships you’re asking? Simple: to collect treasure, you sail and dock at a wild island (end your turn with the bow of your ship touching the outline of a wild island). The next turn you can collect as much treasure as your ship can carry, and then the next turn you can sail back to your home island. When you reach it, you dock and unload your treasure, which is now safe and secure.
I’ve simplified these rules quite a bit for this opening piece, and I’ve omitted several more complicated rules that are an integral part of the game. I just wanted to give some flavor of the game before we move to the more complicated, but fun aspects. WizKids has created a FANTASTIC animated tutorial, which you can view here: How to Play Pirates! I highly recommend it, if for nothing else, the pirate narration is classic.
This game is a tremendous amount of fun, and it’s simple, but with enough complex nuances to make even the most hardcore gamers giggle with glee. When I first saw the concept for this game at WizardWorld Los Angeles 2003 I was bowled over, and I couldn’t WAIT to get a hold of it. Now at the time I was still fairly into Heroclix, but I rapidly lost interest in that particular game (due to a number of reasons, not the least of which was constant rule changing, and idiotic exclusive figure distribution). Honestly I don’t see myself playing in any WizKids tournament any time soon, simply because I don’t like the structure and competitiveness to get the LE prizes. However, I’ve purchased or traded for several of those LE prizes already, and they really aren’t all that desirable anyway. Instead of being GODLY pieces that you MUST run in a tournament, they’re simply Ghost versions of existing ships, that don’t cost any more or any less (well one or two have a different cost) than the existing versions. Complete sets aren’t impossible to put together, though patience (and several boxes worth of packs) will be required. Additionally, WizKids is making a concerted effort to listen to the players and give them what they want, instead of ignoring them completely. Trading of Ships is also pretty easy, as these guys are pretty sturdy already. They don’t require a large box to ship out in (like Heroclix did); you can slap a ship or two in a top loader and stick it in an envelope.
Check It Out!
In the mean time, keep
checking this site for Ships of the Day, Fleet Builds, and
all the other great stuff you’ve come to expect from
Pojo.com. Shiver me timbers and blow me down, I’ll see YOU
on the Spanish Main!
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