Thursday, November 22, 2012

A transition to the Steampunk Shipyard...

Ahoy!  For those who know, I tend to be a perennial blogger, with a penchant for making (too) many blogs, and then not being able to update them.  Sadly, the SL Ports of Call is one of my gems, which though good in theory, I have simply not been able to pay the attention it deserves.  As such, I will be "returning this blog to port", so to speak - or in land-lubber's terminology, I'll be folding this blog into another blog of mine.

My main blog, the Steampunk Tribune, has been a steadfast work, but... that's not where I'm headed.  The SL Ports of Call will be heading to my nautical Steampunk blog, called the Steampunk Shipyard.  I do enjoy the virtual nautical life, but blogging on it needed a focus, so I'll be transitioning from here to there.  To read up on the SL Pirate Life, and nautical Steampunk endeavors, and other fanciful sea-faring topics, please head to:

Saturday, November 5, 2011

SL Sailing Tutorial, for combat ships, by Chase Speculaas

Its been a bit since I've updated the Ports of Call, as I've been caught up with the other blogs (and that pesky RL), but... I did find this older tutorial for ship combat for Chase Speculaas ships, from 2009.  I"m not sure how useful it is now, or if Chase is still in SL... but the blog isn't dead yet (lol)!  Do enjoy!

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Pirate Media - Captain's Morgan's "To Life, Love, & Loot"

Found this over at, and had no choice but to post!  A great pirate advert by Academy Award winning director Tom Hopper - do enjoy, matey!

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Ports of Call - Blackspot Shipyard

Ahoy!  As I've made my return from the Steamlands, I've been sorting out inventory, and sadly realizing that my previous ships, the iconic Mujer Vieja from Mr. Chase Speculaas, is a tad out of date, and is due for a virtual retro-fit (meaning its time to find a new ship to sail the seas!)... so begins the endeavor to find the right ship!

As I was framing the basis for the Port of Call, I wanted to ensure I could locate sufficient merchants who sell nautical items were represented on the sidebar of the blog (and yes, it is an endeavor in progress, so if any readers know of good SL nautical merchants, please do let me know)!  One of the ship merchants I located was the Black Spot Shipyard.

The entrance to the Blackspot Shipyard is well laid-out - most who visit are searching for a sailing ship, and Ms. Lia Woodget, has placed them within easy viewing distance.  I took a peek a the Cormorant and the Pelican, but decided to take a bit of a stroll along the grounds of the Blackspot Shipyard... a fortunate decision on my part!

Blackspot Shipyard sells ships, but it is also one of the best representations of the 1800s piratical genre I've seen in Second Life.  The main locale has a plenty of locations to relax, take photographs, and simply recline in leisure, including hidden nooks and crannies where one can dance a spell, shoot of a few cannons (a vice of mine), or simply indulge in the great atmosphere presented at Blackspot.

Reading a bit in the "study" area...

... followed by the small boat to a nearby isle!

Arriving at the small isle, where a number of sundries and good are for sale...

... however I decided to take a break and overlook the ocean for a bit.

Arriving at the second isle, designed by Mr. A. Weka, is one fortified!

The area consists of three sims, all well designed, with ships and a few small isles on each one.  Each of the isle sells products, but all in genre.  In fact, the outpost above was available (alas, if I only had a bit more land and prims...)!  

Plenty of picturesque shot can be found at Black Spot 
- just a bit of exploration is needed!

Standing topside on Ms. Woodget's pride, the Elysium!

Relaxing after the rest of the pirates have left

While this isn't an open water sim for sailing or fighting, it is certainly a beautiful sim to behold.  The ships on display are excellent, and the quality of Black Spot Shipyard is reflected at its home port.  To pay a visit to the shipyard, eye the sturdy ships, do a bit of replenishing of nautical goods, or just spend a bit of relaxing time in an excellent pirate atmosphere, do pay a visit to the Blackspot Shipyards, at:

(Note: both SLurl and her SL Marketplace address are on the sidebar!)

Hmmm... one match, three choices...

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Pirate Background - Pirates, Privateers, and Buccaneers

[Starting off the blog with a bit of background from various pirate sources, including my old copy of GURPS Swashbucklers... and yes, proper attribution is at the bottom for reference purposes!]

There is little difference in the actions of pirates and privateers.  Both despoil weaker ships on the high seas.  The major difference is in the way in which a ship is owned and operated.  Privateers are privately-owned ships with a real captain.  The captain might be the owner, or the ship might be owned by a group of merchants.  The captain has complete authority to dole out punishment, as on any naval vessel or merchant ship.  The crew receive no pay if no prize is captured, but the owners receive a large share when prey is captured - 40 to 70 percent - and the king or governor 10 to 20 percent.  The crew divides the remainder.

Buccaneer is a term that is only applied to the Caribbean Breathern of the Coast.  They are privateers when they can get letters of marque (from the French governor of Tortuga or the British governor of Jamaica), and pirates when they can't.  It doesn't much matter to them; the Spanish are their main opponents, and the Spanish label anybody in the Caribbean as a pirate.  Morgan was the only buccaneer we know of who was always careful to have letters of marque.

The term buccaneer refers to their origin as cow-hunters.  Escaped cattle and pigs ran free all over the island of Hispaniola, and refugees from the religious wars in Franc took to hunting them for a living.  They learned the art of smoking the mead from what few Indians had escaped the Spanish.  The Indians called the greenwood grill a boucan.  The boucaniers sold their jerky (Spanish, charqui) to passing ships and gained a reputation that led to teh Spanish hunting them.  This in turn, led to their hatred of the Spanish, and the rest, as they say, is history.

The are many other words for pirate.  "Freebooter" is an old English word, related to booty.  The French couldn’t pronounce this, and changed the word to "filbustier".  This word passed back into English as "filibuster", which meant pirate until the 19th century.  Thy are also called "marooners", from their habit of marooning people.  ("Maroon" itself comes form the Spanish word for an escaped black slave; a maroon went to remote places).

[Per GURPS Swashbucklers, page 60 {sidebar}, Steve Jackson Games, by Steffan O'Sullivan, 1988, 1998]

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Pirates of the Caribbean 4 Trailer...

Whilst I'm in the process of developing the site, I've added the trailer of the most recent Pirates of the Caribbean movie - On Stranger Tides... Do enjoy!

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Back and Re-branded!

An homage photo to Dani, the brave Chihuahua pirate of the seas! 
(by Piratas de los Antes, via Flickr)

Well, its been much too long since I've visited this corner of the blog-o-sphere, and it was time for a return.  A lot has changed since the original "Ships of the Line" started, way back when Antiquity was just a small set of sims....

Antiquity has changed a lot since I left and returned to New Babbage.  It's grown exponentially, had a change of owner ship, and lots of new faces, groups, and battles abound.  That tends to happen with success, but one unfortunate incident did take place, which did directly involve myself.  

The Antiquity Gazette, a blog which I stared back in was taken over by the new Antiquity owner, who apparently saw fit to lock it down without much consultation or notification (or at least none that I knew about).  Not very sporting, but that is water under the bridge, so to speak.  After seeing the abscondment of the Gazette, I checked on the "Ships of the Line", which was nurtured by Miss Malibu Dupont after my departure from Antiquity.  Fortunately, it was still a "free blog" (as in anyone can read it - unlike the current Antiquity Gazette), to my relief.

So, as the Ships of the Line no longer has a home in Antiquity, I've decided to follow the Pirate life, and remake the blog into a home for Second Life pirates.  Still under construction, and frankly, at first blush, the SL Pirate community seems a bit smaller than I recall, but I suppose that a bit of exploration will resolve that!  

The blog will have a similar format at the Steampunk Travelogue - mostly links, blogs, and a listing of past and current SL pirate sims (with SLurls, if they are still active).  As its a new begining, we'll see how it goes!  If you have anything you'd like to see on the Ports of Call blog, or wish to have pirate-related SL (or RL) advertising on the blog, please do contact me at: TheSteampunkTribune [dot] com.