Having finally finished my all-3d-printed Bretonnian Fleet it was time to try it out against my old Empire Fleet, controlled by Brendan. Since it's a long, long, long time since Brendan played we decided to play a fairly simple game, 750 points of basic ships each with a single Master Wizard each. Nothing from any of the expansions.
The Bretonnians can get a lot of the tiny Buccaneers in a 750 point fleet, which makes it actually rather powerful. They act to mask the bigger ships with the larger firepower whilst not being worth many Battle Honours themselves. My fleet has the full 12 Buccaneers in it along with 3 Corsairs and a Galleon. All are 3d printed on my FDM printer apart from the Galleon which was 3d printed on a resin printer and bought from Etsy.
The Empire fleet is the one I started Man O'War with back in the '90s. It's all original ships and all painted by myself at that time. It's a similar make-up to the Bretonnians, but because the Wargalleys are twice the points of the Buccaneers there's only 6 of them. Also there is a squadron of Wolfships and a Greatship.
Wind was very important in this game. To start with the wind changed to be in my favour and my sails filled. Brendan's ships had to switch to oars, which meant they still made progress, but left the Greatship behind. Then Brendan's Wizard cast Wind Master and changed the wind to be directly at me. My whole fleet stopped dead in it's tracks and had to try and turn out of the wind.
Brendan's Wargalleys then reached my front line of Buccaneers and rammed them, several were sunk, but there were still loads left. Being so close did mean my catapults could not fire though.
Whilst his best way of attacking was to ram my Buccaneers with his Wargalleys he couldn't keep doing this for long and eventually he was too close to ram. After a couple of bad boarding actions he decided that the way to deal with the Bucaneers was to stay just within close range and shoot them. This was very slow progress and was pretty much a stalemate.
On the other flank I faced off against the Wolfships. To start with I couldn't get very close, though my Galleon did get a couple of good broadsides off immobilising one. But then the wind changed and I was able to break through and attack properly. I brought the Galleon around the side and destroyed another Wolfship. My wizard then got lucky and pushed the third one into the island sinking it!
The Corsairs also broke through and the Greatship became surrounded. Because of the masking that the Bucaneers had done the Corsairs and Galleon were untouched at this point and the Greatship was easily sunk. With most of his fleet in tatters and only a few Bucaneers sunk to show for it, Brendan's Imperial fleet struck it's colours.
I had warned Brendan that this Bretonnian fleet is a very tough one to crack and it proved to be so. Even though in the early stages of the action the wind was against me it proved very strong indeed. I'd be interested to see how it fares against the other races.