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Sunday, May 02, 2004

Battle of the Virginia Capes (OK, it's off-topic)

I am playtesting my scenario for the Battle of the Virginia Capes. I had decided some months ago that I didn't like the canned Privateers Bounty scenario. My concept is that rather than starting at the point of contact, it would be better to start where there is time to maneuver. I am starting with the French fleet getting underway from anchor. The English fleet is approaching from the East-Northeast.

I quickly found out that I had not allowed enough time for the French to get underway and to sort out their formation. Instead, the British were on top of them before they had a chance to form a line. Part of the problem is that I wanted to have the British frigates that were used for repeating. I only was able to add those that were included in Privateers Bounty, but they were part of the problem.

So, I had to go back to the scenario editor. I am moving the British farther out, so that the French have a chance to form into a line, after getting underway. A complication is that the French are on two different tacks, at the start. A challenge is how to form a single line. I found out one of the drawbacks of using destination points. Some ships can be routed so that they end up stalled, pointing into the wind. I am tempted to control the French fleet using the helm, as if I were controlling the Dutch in the First Anglo-Dutch War.

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