I have a group that is wanting to do a sea campaign and I am honestly not sure how to do it or if I want to even try.
I can't imagine how exciting a sea campaign would be. What's your thoughts?
Gamer Forge Response:
To get a good seafaring (yarrgh!) game, we say:
1. Get to the good parts. Real life on a sailing vessel is boring! Just ask Flagoon. Skip all the mundane tasks of ship upkeep and swabbing decks and repairing sails. Yawn fest. Get to the part where the crew has to stay alive during a typhoon or repel the invading pirates or resist the call of the Sirens. Now that's entertainment!
2. Authenticity. Not to be confused with the boring parts. Let players name key crew members and come up with duty rosters. So when it comes time to get to battle stations, they can yell for a specific person to man the cannons and for another specific person to batten down the hatches. Give them the sense of a real ship. Also, give them a little personal space on a cramped ship. Maybe some personal quarters to call their own, complete with all the decor and personal effects they've collected along the way. This will help them feel invested and "bought in" to the story.
3. Catchphrases*. Its corny, but giving each player some phrase that gives a little snippet of their character away. Just a simple one sentence phrase that sets a starting point for development. "I can see myself on that ship" or "I hope they've got rum on board" are some examples. Give some bonus experience or create a situational bonus for using these phrases in context.
*Special thanks to Paul Genesse for helping create a better seafaring game. This would not be possible without him.