Have we had:
Splice the Main Brace!- Let us all drink together...
Anyway, as nice as this guide is, I don't think you will ever find me ploughing waves. Except if I get ridiculously drunk and get press ganged...
Edited by Fyne on 05/04/12 21:53 (BST)
Impressment by pirates was a definite possibility and concern, as was impressment by various historical navies. As mentioned in post #23 of this thread, press gangs would roam taverns seeking able seamen for various historical navies, and pirates would force skilled tradesmen from captured ships into their service as well. To look briefly at each of these:
Impressment was most common in the later stages of any European war, once "supplies" of skilled labour had been killed, and there were fewer professional navy men left. Captains would be given license to send a press gang ashore - usually under the command of a lieutenant, carrying papers to prove them a legitimate press gang, and listing the number of skilled sailors they were seeking - to trawl taverns and docks in search of sailors. These would be "impressed" into the navy by guile or force or cajolement.
Money might be simply offered, but as often as not, free alcohol was instead [usually by navy crew who wore no uniform], and "the King's shilling" [your guaranteed advance pay, similar say to one silver in WoW] would br dropped into the cup when the sailor was not looking. If he reached the bottom of the cup, he'd taken the shilling, and so accepted being "hired" by the navy. Glass-bottomed tankards MAY be in part an effort to prevent this deception.
Others would somehow "accept" the navy's offer whilst unconscious by drink or by violence. There could also be a trade in skilled sailors being purchased by "crimps" [who would use the same tricks as the press gangs, but usually were not navy men, instead living at a particular tavern and selling unconscious or drugged sailors to the press gangs for a small fee].
One band of farmers from Lunenburg, Nova Scotia, were in Halifax town for the weekly market and did not return home. Eventually their wives journeyed to the city to discover that they had been "pressed" from a tavern the evening after the market, and were somewhere out at sea. The ladies fought the impressment in court on the grounds that they were not sailors, and won: the British Crown agreed the men were free to leave the navy immediately, if they wished, or else remain voluntarily crew. Of course, the men were at sea six months before the verdict, and whether they ever returned home to be farmers I do not know.
Skilled tradesmen would be "forced" from a captured ship by pirates. Carpenters, surgeons, sailmakers, cooks, boatswains, et cetera. Such men were encouraged to sign the ship's Articles, but often enough did not. If the crew were eventually captured, such men could then say they had been "forced," and as their mark was not upon the articles, nothing could be proved otherwise. Their skills were so valuable that this was allowed, even by such pirates as Edward Low.
[For some references, see Philip Ashton's statement regarding his capture by Ned Low, also for impressment in the British navy see http://www.royalnavalmuseum.org/info_sheet_impressment.htm - impressment had some similarities in the various nations of Europe.]
Edited by Fyne on 19/12/12 16:04 (GMT)
There are many possible targets for pirate and sky pirate roleplay, in the game. Caravans, convoys, and ships ripe for plunder. Here is a listing of those I have tracked down, their availability, and their style.
Gizelton Caravan -
We will begin with a moment of silence for an opportunity that is no more. The Gizelton Caravan used to loop about Desolace, but as of Mists, he does so no longer.
Crossroads Caravan -
This requires the assistance of a level 15-ish or higher Horde character to complete the quests at Far Watch Point, and be able to pick up the Caravan quest at Grol'darm farm. The caravan has two kodo for each character who starts the quest [yes, a long train of kodo is possible], and it cannot actually be stopped by player character actions, but it lasts some time, and of especial note for Alliance race sky pirates, those on the quest can defend the caravan against flagged enemies. Lots of dramatic potential.
Quel'danas merchants -
Several docked and anchored ships can be found at the Isle of Quel'danas. Whilst flight is not possible there, a crack team of boarders could assault one of the empty vessels at anchor by use of swimming and rafts: http://www.wowhead.com/item=85500
Off Tanaris' Coast -
Two ships are visible in the distance, and not quite reachable [or are they?]. They appear to be pirates and goblin merchants engaged in combat.
Venture Bay -
A trio of ships with active NPCs, docked at Venture Bay. Notably the central Venture Company merchant ship is boardable and attackable. Also, there are a pair of unmanned cargo vessels, one Alliance and one Horde, anchored at either end of the bay.
The Zephyr -
Alliance skyu pirates will find this goblin zeppelin and attackable crew flying between Orgrimmar and Thunder Bluff.
Howling Fjord -
A zeppelin on a circliong route for sky pirates circles above attackable Northsea Pirate ships.
Suggestions of others welcome. Have YOU seen a useful merchant ship for boarding, or a caravan plying the roads?