Thread: Piracy
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Old 01-22-2010, 12:41 AM
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Default Piracy

thefusilier 11-11-2005, 10:32 AM Piracy still exists today, primarily in Indonesian waters, but recently Somalian pirates have been quite active and it got me thinking about Tw2000. I think piracy would make a strong comeback in many areas, especially waterway chokepoints in Tw2000. Even with the world economy wrecked, short distance maritime trade would still exist (as mentioned), especially in the non-nuclear hit countries. Anyone like to comment, I'd like some input for myself.

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TiggerCCW UK 11-11-2005, 10:40 AM I've always thought of pirates in T2K as basically aquatic marauders. In the same way that some army units have turned to brigandage, I would assume some naval units would do the same, more likely smaller patrol type craft, rather than larger vessels. I've only run land based campaigns, but there is a definite scope for using pirates as a new challenge for PC's. IIRC there was a scenario in the Bangkok supplement that dealt with a group of pirates using a grounded LST as a base.

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thefusilier 11-11-2005, 10:44 AM I forgot about the Thai guys mentioned in the book. I am preparing a game and I wanted to add the element of piracy in at after seeing the pics of the Somalis. Land based marauders, yeah I guess thats an easy way for me to handle it.

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TiggerCCW UK 11-11-2005, 12:05 PM I think it was Cyberpunk that had the Aquatic Nomads, which were basically extended family groups who lived afloat. I don't know how practical it would be to keep a larger vessel going, but it could be a mother ship - perhaps a cruise ship or some such, with smaller vessels being used for raiding and recon. There was an article for Dark Conspiracy in Demonground about people living on decommisioned oilrigs that might help as well.

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firewalker 11-11-2005, 09:26 PM re oil rigs: check out the thread "cool or odd encounter location's" it has some info on decommissioned ww2 artificial islands. the British built several to serve as anti aircraft emplacements. one of witch was later declared a sovrine nation (sealand, complete with a hereditary king).


For most of maritime history there wasn't really a distinction between pirate and merchant or for that matter fisherman. If you had a boat and saw somebody while you were out in it that you thought you could take, then well you did. This could also be coming back a little bit. Considering how much conflict you can get over fishing (or shrimping, claming ect) territory now maybe the buccaneers that just attacked your ship were just trying to defend there cache.

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thefusilier 11-12-2005, 02:23 AM Yeah I like that idea about the fishing territory. Reminds me of a couple of years ago when Canada and Spain had a little fishing "war" seizing boats and such. Food would be more difficult to produce in Tw2000 so I think this would be good.


Thanks all for the comments. It'll help.

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abaumgartg 11-12-2005, 10:58 AM I am a ways from actually writing it up, but I have the Puget Sound as being a pirate haven. Close enough to MilGov that there would be some interestig shipping, lots of fishermen, maybe even a little river traffic, and lots of places to hide. Someday i may getto fleshing that out...

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Matt Wiser 11-12-2005, 08:21 PM As long as they stay away from the Bremerton Navy Yard and the Bangor Sub Base-both of those I've got as still active. Not to mention that the local Coast Guard is likely sail-borne in commanderred local craft, and no doubt patrolling for such seaborne scum. The old penalties for piracy are no doubt being enforced....they're better off getting KIA'd than hung. While the Navy's remaining surface ships there don't patrol much due to fuel shortages, and the boomers and SSNs still there won't be wasted on anti-piracy duty, they will report anything suspicious for the Coasties to check out as they pass in and out of Puget Sound and the Strait of Juan De Fuca.

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DeaconR 11-13-2005, 04:31 AM Matt, I'm now very curious about your game and I have a few questions: do you have the United Brotherhood of Fishermen in existence in your campaign, and if so how do you deal with them? Do you also have the USCG force described in "Rifle River" around, and are they connected with the group in Bangor? It seems to me that you could have a reasonably well patrolled coast all the way down to Norfolk based on what you are describing.

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Matt Wiser 11-13-2005, 03:50 PM Bangor, WA, not Bangor, ME. I mentioned the Puget Sound/Strait of Juan de Fuca area. The Navy controls the Islands in the area, along with the Seattle-Tacoma area, along with the Sub Base, Bremerton NY, and Whidbey Island NAS. Since there is some fuel still availiable, the A-6Fs of VA-128, EA-6Bs from VAQ-129, and F-14Ds of VF-124 det 1 still fly on occasion. Many of the USCG patrol craft are alcohol-fueled, and those that aren't are commanderred civilian sailing craft. Only one DD in the area: USS Hayler (DD-997). Spruance-class. She is short of fuel, but patrols once or twice a month. SEALs in the area-rotating off of duty aboard USS Parche (SSN-687) participate in anti-piracy ops when called for.

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thefusilier 11-14-2005, 06:00 AM Hey all,


Thanks for the reply. It will help me out.


I too have the naval bases near Seatle operational with the MILGOV enclave there. I never thought about all those hiding spots among the islands though...

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DeaconR 11-14-2005, 08:35 AM I love how all these discussions flesh out the campaigns. All those questions you have about "wait how about this..."

Of course that is part of the fun of gming as we all know, is taking the books' canon to some extent but then wondering about how to do better details for some of our own campaigns.


Another aspect of pirates btw is again as with marauders sometimes one society's pirate is another's hero. Look at privateers for instance; to the Spanish and Portuguese they were a lawless menace; to the English and the Dutch they became heroes.


BTW, there is a good novel called "China Sea" that depicts a US Navy crew fighting modern pirates, by David Poyer.

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firewalker 11-14-2005, 10:30 PM the Chesapeake bay used to be something of a hot bead for waterborne conflict. between the smugglers and bead poachers and government men from two deferent state's (to be fair it has been a while since the Marylanders last mounted machineguns on there boats).


the bay has always been both a natural treasure principally as a source of food. just the sort of thing that would attract people and groups after the twilight war. if the two gov's don't want it there would surly be others that saw the potential for a power base. remnants of the state government fighting the other state government some "lords" one or two strait up criminal organizations and in-between are the water men. hew just want to fish there bead's and feed there families (and maybe do a little smuggling)

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Targan 11-15-2005, 04:08 AM There are a number of local pirate groups named for the NYC area in Armies of the Night. In my campaign a number of them were becoming heavily involved in the slave trade before they were wiped out by my players' PCs.

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thefusilier 11-15-2005, 05:12 AM Yeah, I read up on the NYC guys a little while ago. They were a good addition to reference.

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ChalkLine 11-20-2005, 12:25 PM While I don't own nor have read "Mediterranean Cruise", I always thought a campaign of a small vessel island hopping across the Med would be a great setting. The North African pirates have a heritage going back over a millenium, and it's only in the last 100 years that their activities have been curtailed. Add opportunistic raids by flag enemies in the Italian, Sicilian, Sardinian, Greek and Turkish islands and you'd have some serious fighting!


What usually stops people playing in this setting, I've found, is the rather dubious situation set up in the official campaign where Italy and Greece are hostile to NATO. This can (and should) be downplayed however without damaging the setting; Greece is having it's natural war with Albania and Turkey without much reference to the NATO, Italy is skirmishing with France and Austria while trying to stay out of the mess while holding onto breakaway island states and cannot supply troops as North African adventurers are giving the Italians hell in the Med.


The Med is the natural habitat for pirates, the rich fishing grounds are becoming depleted and fishing fleets may arm for protection. Armed fishermen in history are the basis for piratical activity, especially in areas of lawlessness and conflict, as they can scoot back to harbour without the larger powers being overly concerned that a (largely mythical) 'cruising pirate' would incur.

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DeaconR 11-20-2005, 11:33 PM It would be interesting if we came up with some kind of unofficial North Africa/Med sourcebook here though sometime.


In my campaign, set mostly in the New York area, I made one group of the pirates more or less seaborne warlords, who fished for their basic sustenance but had a protection racket going.


Recently my players dealt them a major blow. They sort of had to do something; essentially their own actions had provoked an attack that was coming against a town on Long Island. The players sunk one of their smaller vessels and grounded a larger one and took a number of pirates prisoner with the help of the town militia. However sometimes things can have a way of not quite working out; as they will discover the downside to this will be that the larger group of pirates kept others away from Long Island. However in a way this is just one of those fun means by which you keep players involved and doing stuff.


One of my players shrewdly identified this as being like the Dangeld that the Saxons had to pay, and that ultimately the Saxons had had to wonder if it was worth it...

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