By Sea - Ships and The Monthly Raiding and Commerce Action in the EGS

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By Sea - Ships and The Monthly Raiding and Commerce Action in the EGS

The Age of Sail was mostly about one thing – profit. Those willing to take what the Sea would give them, those willing to haul the bounty of new lands, and those willing to take it from others. In BoBS, a critical part of the game and the storylines is about wealth generation, legal or not.

Remember, you can build whatever you want that fits into the theme of BoBS. You do not have to play within the game system if you do not want to! Your stories and builds will still be part of the project! What follows is the rules for the game mechanic that allows builders' ships to make money at sea and in some cases, crush their enemies. It should be noted that all of the mechanisms described below are separate from conflict resolutions or other combat.

Note: The MRCA v.2 will be launched shortly.

Master Index

Licensing Ships (This post)

Participating in the MRCA

The Ship License Form

Example Cruise

Licensing Ships

  • To buy a license for a ship, you pay your faction a fee, using the ship license form.
  • All licenses must have a MOC attached to them in order to use that licensed ship in the MCRA. You can build the MOC first, then apply for the license once you have enough DBs to do so.
  • If a builder has no ship licenses larger than a Class 1, he/she is always entitled to a single Class 1-2 license (even if a previous free license ship has been lost).
  • If a vessel is destroyed, we encourage builders to MOC a new vessel for the next license. However, we know that that could be time-consuming, so you can attach a new license to an old MOC that was licensed previously even if it has been long disassembled. Do give your ship a new name though. We can assume that your character(s) went to the old shipwright and bought a sister ship.
  • When MOCing a vessel to fit a license, we highly encourage that builders try to MOC according the characteristics of the ship they are trying to license. Because ship MOCs do not have to stay intact, most people with a fledgling pirate collection should be able to MOC the small and medium sized categories multiple times over.
  • The leadership will consider micro-builds for ships of larger sizes on a case by case basis.
  • Sea Rats only pay 70% of a ship license.

Cost Multiplier

  • After 3 licensed ships, the cost of a license goes up.
  • The current maximum of licensed vessels one person can have is 12.


Un-licensing Ships

  • You may un-license a ship at any time through the ship licensing form.
  • If you wish to re-license an un-licensed ship, you must pay the original amount (subject to the cost multiplier).

Up-licensing Ships

  • If you don't have the DBs available, you may choose to temporarily under license your ship.
  • To upgrade, you must pay the difference. Use the Ship Upgrade form to do so (coming soon).
  • When posting your ship, you must state the licence to which you intend to upgrade it later on.

Captured Ships

  • If you capture a NPC ship (one that does not belong to another player) you must MOC that ship before you can take advantage of the license. After having MOCed it, you must fill out the ship license form before using the ship.
  • If you capture a ship belonging to another player, you may use it whenever.
  • If you capture a ship and already own three or more ships, you must pay difference between the original license and the cost multiplier before you can use it.
  • You may sell a captured ship without MOCing it or paying the cost multiplier. If it has not been MOCed, you must of course inform potential buyers of this fact.
  • When a NPC pirate ship captures a PC warship, the warship will not be auctioned. In the case of all other ships captured by NPC pirates, they will be auctioned.
  • When a NPC privateer ship captures a PC ship and war has not been declared between the respective nations, the case will be brought before the courts of the privateer's home nation and resolved by volunteers via a build off (see the Conflict Resolution rules).
  • When a ship labeled "Unknown" captures a builder's vessel, the builder may post a build that throws blame on some NPC privateer (this can be a MRCA result build). A disinterested leader will determine by the roll of a die (1/3 favorable probability) whether or not the build is accurate. If the roll is favorable, the builder will proceed to a build-off with the implicated nation (see above). To take advantage of this possibility, the build casting blame must occur in the same month of the capture (i.e. if the MRCA was the February MRCA, the build must occur in March, and the build-off, if applicable, will occur in April).
  • If a builder's last Class 1 or 2 ship is captured by a NPC and the builder has no larger ships, he is entitled to a free license and will be given the opportunity to retrieve his ship without action being taken concerning it (as above).

Buying Ships

  • You may buy ships from other players. To pay the other player, you must fill out a transaction form.
  • If the ship was a captured ship and has not yet been MOCed, you must MOC it before you can use it.
  • You must fill out the ship license form for any ship(s) you buy. No DBs will be subtracted, except in the case of the cost multiplier.
  • Ships bought from another player are subject to the cost multiplier.

Prize Court

See here for more details.

Independent Contractors

  • Sea Rats (and only Sea Rats) can call upon an independent contractor for help with a piratical mission.
  • At the cost of 1/5th of the profit, a Sea Rat can hire a randomly rolled 1-3A vessel to tag along.
  • For 3/5ths of the profit, a Sea Rat can hire a randomly rolled 4A-5HA vessel to tag along.
  • Independent contractor ships may be used as escorts or predators.
  • All players sailing in conjunction with an independent contractor must give up 1/5 or 3/5s of their share (as applicable).

Ship Characteristics

Speed (S): This dictates how many ports a ship can visit during a Trade Run, and how likely your ship is to escape when being chased.

Guns (G): This is the ship’s attack and defense characteristic. Roughly, one G rating equals 4 guns. Your MOC should conceivably be able to hold the amount of guns that your license entails. Creative license is allowed here of course.

Crew ©: This is the amount of men on your ship, and in a boarding action they will be relied upon. Roughly, one C equals 5 men. A 0 crew is the captain and a few choice men. Creative license is allowed here of course.

Cargo ($): This is the space the ship has for hauling goods. One $ allows the vessel to carry 10% of the total trade value of a settlement.

Hull (H): This is the strength of the vessel. The Hull statistic is only used in raiding and attacking fortresses, or in special circumstances between warships.

Possible Opponents (PO): This is the number that a ship can fight in one battle. Escorts need high PO or more escorts will be needed when fighting off groups of attackers.


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Participating in The Monthly Raiding and Commerce Action (MRCA)

Once you have a licensed vessel (see above), you can register it via the MRCA form for this month’s action if you so desire. See the Master Index for a link.

The Four Actions

1) Trade Runs:

  • First, choose which ports you wish to travel to. Use the settlement values chart (below). Your vessel can visit a minimum of two ports and a maximum of your vessel's speed limit.
  • Remember! The higher a settlement's value, the larger your chance of success, but also the greater attraction the settlement provides for pirates!
  • You must list the ports you are visiting in the appropriate section of the MRCA form. Please try to spell the settlement names as they appear on the map.
  • Then, use the trade map to calculate which zones your vessel will be travelling through. A longer run equals more chance of success; but cargo scores will be still calculated for the most direct route, and longer runs also involve more danger.
  • Note: Be sure to check out the last post in this topic for the latest charts and settlement values.
  • If you are travelling with an escort, you must specify the name of the escort(s).
  • If you are travelling with other merchant ships, you must specify the names of the other merchant ships. (There is a maximum of three merchant ships per flotilla.) Remember that a flotilla can only travel to as many ports as its slowest ship.
  • Lastly, check off any modifiers you have earned. (Coming Soon)
  • To make large Trade Runs easier, the Convoy Set-up Form allows a leader to set up as above, and each participant has to specify only the convoy name.

2) Bounty Reaping:

  • Treasure hunting, fishing, discovering resources at sea, etc.
  • Choose which zone you will be looking to make a profit from.
  • Zone values are randomly predetermined by faction leaders.
  • If you are travelling with an escort, you must specify the name of your escort(s).
  • If you are travelling with other vessel(s), you must specify the name(s) of the other vessel(s).
  • Note that cargo space is necessary for a bounty run.
  • Lastly, check off any modifiers you have earned. (Coming Soon)

3) Escort Duty:

  • Escorts are ships that sail with other ships to protect those vessels from harm.
  • Predators will be faced first by escorts, and the protected vessel will only have to fight if the predator beats the escort.
  • The escort continues fight until it is lost.
  • An escort can defend 5 vessels, unless there are special circumstances or modifiers.
  • More than one escort can be assigned to a vessel.
  • An escort cannot sail without escorting a vessel.
  • Escorts do not count against the merchant flotilla limit of three vessels.
  • To arrange an escort, you must fill out the webform with the same ports and zones as the run which you are accompanying.
  • All vessels in an escorted Trade Run must visit the same number of ports.
  • You must also list the vessels you are escorting.
  • Lastly, check off any modifiers. (Coming Soon)
  • To make large Trade Runs easier, the Convoy Set-up Form allows a leader to set up the run and the escort(s) has to specify only the convoy name.

4) Predators:

Option One - Attacking a specific settlement

  • List the name of the settlement you are raiding.
  • List any vessel(s) that is (are) accompanying you. (No limits.)
  • Check off any modifiers you have earned. (Coming Soon)
  • Any DBs earned in an attack will go to the first builder to sign up, who is then responsible for dividing up the shares.
  • Note: It is hard to succeed at raiding a settlement.

Option Two - Cruising for Prey

  • Choose a zone in which to stalk prey. Any prey available in that zone will be susceptible to your attack.
  • List any accompanying vessels (up to three total).
  • Check off any modifiers you have earned. (Coming Soon)
  • Decide what nations you are interested in attacking.
  • Decide what size of an opponent you or your pack are willing to take on.
  • Any DBs earned in an attack will go to the first builder to sign up, who is then responsible for dividing up the shares.

Action Results

At the end of the month we will use the resolution rules to conclude what happened to each ship. The results will be published in the Kings Port Advertiser and Ship List, New Terra’s most reputable newspaper. (In other words, we will create a post with all the ship actions for one month and their results.)

You are encouraged to MOC the results after you read them for an additional 10DB and PIPs.

Note: By entering into the MCRA, you agree to accept the results of the action, even if your ship is taken or destroyed.

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A Sample Voyage:

Plotting a voyage: In the MCRA Form you will be asked to plot your trade voyage by telling us which zones the ship sailed through. Remember, you want the shortest distance between your destinations because you will only receive credit for that many zones, even if you put in the form more zones. See below on this random map.


To get from Potter to Horrace two paths are mapped out. The yellow path is the correct path, as it is the shortest distance possible (the voyage passes through 3 zones). The orange path is longer, but goes the same place. It sails through 4 zones, but will only be rewarded as if it sailed through 3, because a shorter path was available. Moreover, there are 4 chances for interception rather than just 3, because the builder chose to sail further than they had to. What this comes down to is that less zones are always the best.


Again, with a longer trade voyage – The voyage is between Brin, Horrace, and Chall. The fastest voyage is through 4 zones (5,7,8,2). The yellow arrows make the fastest path. The orange arrows go through five zones (5,6,2,7,8), but the vessel will only be paid as if it had traveled through four zones, and will have 5 chances to be intercepted.


One whole voyage mapped out.

The Bounty is going to make a trade voyage. It is a cutter, with a speed of 3, so it may travel to three settlements during each trade voyage.

The owner consults the trade list:

Tap: 100

Sew: 100

Horrace: 200

Yawn: 5

Cap: 55

Potter: 200

Brin: 155

Chall: 60

Reap: 150

Ardin: 189

Terry: 300

Horrace, Potter, and Terry seem to be the best trading locations this month.

The owner consults the map and sees that there two ways to map this voyage that are equidistant. Zones 4,3,2,7 and zones 4,5,7,2. Either are acceptable plots, but the owner knows that zone 3 does not have any active settlements in it, perhaps there are less pirates hanging out there? The owner chooses the 4,3,2,7 path and submits his/her form.

From this point on it is up to luck and the ol’ gods of the sea.

On the game side of things, this is what happens. (This is just the game mechanics, and not important if you rather just play!)

The gamemaster rolls and incident roll for zone 4, a 6! Phew… clear sailing.

The gamemaster rolls an incident roll for Zone 3, a 9! Oh no… intercepted! But wait, there were no pirate players that signed up to prey in that zone, it looks like the owner’s choice to sail through that zone was a good idea.

The gamemaster rolls an incident roll for Zone 2, an 8! This time there is a pirate available for intercept. The two ships roll against each other’s speed. The Bounty rolls a 4 and adds its modifier of 3 speed for a total of 7. The pirates, in a small sloop roll a 6 and add their modifier of 1 speed. It is a tie! Since the predator did not win the roll off (they tied), the Bounty escapes.

In zone 7, the gamemaster rolls another 8, what terrible luck! There is a predator available for intercept, and the Bounty loses the intercept roll. They have to come to a shooting phase in the combat round. Facing an armed sloop, both the Bounty and the pirate roll. The bounty has 0 guns (or too few to count towards the modifier), while the armed sloop of the pirate has a gun rating of 2. The Bounty rolls a 7, the armed sloop rolls a 6. The shooting phase chart is consulted. The armed sloop’s modifier dictates that the pirate has won by one point. According to the chart, the Bounty is boarded.

Now the bounty’s crew must face off against the pirate’s armed sloop. Both ships roll and add their crew modifier (0 for the Bounty, 2 for the Pirate). The Bounty rolls a 5 and the pirate rolls a 4, the pirate wins by 1, but since an attacker has to win by 2 points or more, the two ships part ways and neither decisively win the combat.

The Bounty has survived its perilous journey, a run in with two pirates and a very close call with a fight on its own decks. Now in port, it is time to tally up the haul!

The trade value of the three places the ship visited is 700DB, A cutter has a cargo value of 2, which means the total is multiplied by .2 (every rank in cargo = 10%). So that is 140DB. Next the cargo roll, which determines the success of the merchants on board the ship is rolled. The bounty was very unlucky and rolled a 1 here, receiving the minimum profits. Consulting the cargo roll chart, we can see the modifier for traveling through four zones and rolling a 1 is 50%. After multiplying 140db by .5, we find that the bounty only earned 70DB for this trip.

The owner may not be the happiest with his/her trade run, after all, they already own a plantation and a few artisans that make about 70DB a month. To supplement their income they decided to MOC the attack on the decks of the Bounty for an additional 10DB, increasing the profit of the voyage by 14%.

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Approximations how a set’s vessel would be categorized.

Remember, MOCs are required for all aspects of BoBS. However, we know that some builders might choose to build MOCs that are somewhat similar to actual sets. For that reason, this list was made to help builders figure out what kind of ship on the list might look like what official Lego ship. The current ship list is not expanded completely, so some of the bigger vessels may get reclassified once we expand the list.

70413 The Brick Bounty = Brig

4184 Black Pearl = War Brig / Heavy Sloop?

4195 Queen Anne's Revenge = Heavy Sloop

6243 Brickbeard's Bounty = Birg

10210 Imperial Flagship = Heavy Sloop

6250 Cross Bone Clipper = Cutter / Sloop

6280/6291 Armada Flagship = Brigatine

6289/6290 Red Beard Runner = Snow

6256 Islander Catamaran = Catamaran

6268 Renegade Runner = Armed Sloop / cutter

6271 Imperial Flagship = Small Schooner / Snow / Large Sloop (depending on how rigged)

6277 Imperial Trading Post = Small Sloop

6286 Skull's Eye Schooner = Heavy Sloop / War Schooner

6274 Caribbean Clipper = Large Sloop

6285/10040 Black Seas Barracuda = Brig

These are Approximations

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January Trade List

23947573940_59fa1069cb_b.jpg2016 jan trade chart by skaforhire, on Flickr

A few pointers -- even though the payout is higher the farther you go, the likelihood of hitting predators is higher.

Perhaps check where your faction's fleet may be voyaging!

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