For quite some time there has been hiatus in ship building and when I went to do a bit of inventory through the unpainted Langton ships, I realized that there is a whole lot of ground to cover to have them all in shape (about half of the existing ships have no rigging set up as we speak). Not only that there is many, many ships that should be painted, but some of the jewels I bought years ago I had entirely forgotten (such as two Brigs with full rigging – and that is a whole lot of rigging). Therefore, it occurred to me that to expedite the progress, I should probably find scenarios that the available forces would enable to fight.
Of course there are plenty to choose from, even Seven Years War alone has many historical instances where moderately sized fleets were in close proximity and albeit they never really engaged. It means whole lot of hypothetical situations that would be interesting. Not to mention the actual battles, and campaigns. Consider for example Suffren in India, the whole episode that we can probably call the most tactically successful French career could turn into compact, but very interesting campaign game.
Then there are all the small encounters that occurred all over the place and where ships were no more than Schooners, Brigs, boats and such – usually in restricted or coastal waters. A splendid ground for interesting but overlooked battles that would fall in range of ruleset that has all the details one could wish for.
Langton’s Signal Close Action (including the fast play version that is even quicker) is a nice set of rules that runs well and is fairly fast, but the general lack of interest in the naval operations is somewhat depressing. A bit like trying to get people try out March Attack…
Perhaps it is only seasonal variation (that has been going on for few years now), and age of sails games will pick up pace again. Who knows – meanwhile, the general lack of war is as good opportunity as any to have some reinforcements ordered, laid up and built. It takes quite a long time to build a fleet after all.