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Admiral's Order: Naval Tactics in the Age of Sail – Edition 74
Admiral's Order: Naval Tactics in the Age of Sail – Edition 74
by Strategema Games (2013)
Player Count
2 to 4

Player Ages
16+

Playing Time
2 hours
Categories
  • Nautical
  • Wargame
  • Napoleonic
  • Age of Reason
  • Designers
  • Mario Jugel
  • Mechanisms
  • Action Point Allowance System
  • Campaign / Battle Card Driven
  • Hex-and-Counter
  • Chit-Pull System
  • Simulation
  • Dice Rolling
  • Artists
  • Mario Jugel
  • Thomas Whitcombe
  • Rating: 8.4/10 from 10 users

    Description

    Admiral's Order: Naval Tactics in the Age of Sail is a simulation of naval engagements between ships-of-the-line and frigates in the Age of Fighting Sail. The focus of the game lies on the wars between Britain and France and her allies in the years 1775 to 1815. Each player takes on the role of an admiral, commander or captain whose command could include a single ship or even a fleet of 20 or more vessels. The core game ("Edition 74") has seven scenarios to choose from, everything from a small, fast and furious encounter between two frigates to a strategic action involving a total of 35 ships-of–the-line.

    A game turn equates to a ½ hour watch on the day of battle. In each turn, players will play cards to execute sailing manoeuvres such as tacking, wearing or changing sail configuration in order to put their ships into position for devastating broadsides or even rakes on the enemy vessels.

    In larger engagements ships are grouped together in squadrons and usually form a “Line of Battle”, a formation that provides the commander with the most control over his fleet. Using Admiral's Order cards players signal general commands to their squadrons ranging from "Form a Keel Line" and "Wearing in succession" to "Prepare for Close Action". Keeping the ships in formation and effectively deploying the fleet in the heat of battle while also retaining the initiative is the main challenge for a commander.

    Occasionally, ships will engage each other in brutally destructive Close Quarter combat. In such situations the game 'zooms' into the action: Using a set of "Close Action" cards, players can employ grapeshot, grenades, carronades, and sharpshooters to wreak destruction on the opposing vessel’s upper deck. Through a clever use of grappling hooks and boarding crews it is possible to overcome the enemy's defenses to take the ship as the ultimate prize.

    All scenarios can be played by two players, but most also provide the option to split command between two players per side in the base game or four players using the Trafalgar expansion. Play time depends on the scenario. While an engagement between two frigates should last no more than two hours, fighting the whole Battle of Trafalgar will take up a weekend.

    The game is produced in a small, limited edition and comes in a handcrafted linen-bound box, including a wooden presentation box with 74 (or 60) handcrafted, wooden ship models. Each ship comes with removable masts and ship names burned into each side.

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