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Navigation
Your ship is steered by a Tillerman, an NPC who never leaves the ship's helm. Tillermen are not fighters, and will obey the orders of anyone better armed than they are (i.e., any player on the ship). Specifically, the Tillerman will respond to commands from the character closest to him. It is a good tactic in battle to station an NPC guard next to the Tillerman to prevent him from obeying orders shouted by passing enemies.

Commands

The Tillerman responds to the following commands:

  • CTRL - ALT - NUMPAD 8 Unfurl sail, forward (moves ship forward).
  • CTRL - ALT - NUMPAD 5 Furl sail, stop (stops current ship movement).
  • CTRL - ALT - NUMPAD 3 Drop anchor (toggles ship movement off).
  • CTRL - ALT - NUMPAD 1 Raise anchor (toggles ship movement on).
  • CTRL - ALT - NUMPAD 4 Turn left, port, left, drift left (left turn).
  • CTRL - ALT - NUMPAD 6 Turn right, starboard, right, drift right (right turn).
  • CTRL - ALT - NUMPAD 2 Go backward.
  • Turn around, come about (turn around and proceed).
  • Forward left, forward right, backward left, backward right, back left, back right, backward, back (move as indicated).
  • Slow forward, slow left, slow right, slow backwards, slow back (move as indicated).
  • One forward, one left, one right, one backwards, one back (move slightly in the direction indicated, then stop).
These commands are for close maneuvering, but for long voyages, it's much easier and more efficient to chart out a course on a map.

Some of the commands have pre-programmed macros to save you typing time. These hot-key commands are indicated above. All the numbers listed for these macros apply only to the numeric keypad. Also, make sure to turn off Num Lock.

Charting A Course

A masterless ship faces a dark fate indeed. If all players on board log off in the middle of a ship voyage, and don't come back soon, their ship is in serious danger. If you planned ahead and set a good course that ends near a coastline, you'll be all right; the ship will probably complete its voyage safely, but you'll appear on the last land you touched before you began your voyage.

However, if you didn't leave orders that take your ship near shore, your ship will founder and eventually sink if left unattended for several hours (real time). In this case, the ship is lost with all cargo and NPCs, and all players that were aboard appear back at the last land they set foot on the next time they log on. Yes, it's entirely possible to be "stranded on a desert island" with no way off except to wait for another ship to pass by.

Even if left safely at anchor, a ship could well vanish without a trace if its master is gone for too long. This is very unlikely to happen in a crowded port, but much more common on wild stretches of coastline. It is not sufficient to simply leave a few NPC guards on duty (though this is a wise precaution to take for other reasons); an abandoned ship must be checked periodically by a player (not necessarily the owner) to keep it from decaying away.

Map Navigation

Any map, including maps drawn by players with the cartography skill, can be used to navigate on any body of water it shows.

Each map has a button you can click on to chart a course. Once you're in navigational mode, you can click on the map to stick "pins" in it. The ship will move from one "pin" to the next, in the order set. You can remove a "pin" by clicking on it and dragging it off the map, and the course will automatically adjust itself around the change.

The ship will only move in a straight line between "pins." It will not automatically skirt a coastline - you must set a course that takes it around the coastline. If you try to chart a course that ends on land or passes over land, your ship will run aground and you will not be able to proceed any further on your charted course. You will need to plot a new course that avoids the obstacle.

Following A Charted Course

Once you've charted the course, give the map to the Tillerman. He will immediately give it back. While on the voyage, he will respond to the following additional commands:

  • Start: embark along the charted course and continue until finished or stopped.
  • Continue: resume course after a stop .
  • Goto #: where # is the number of one of the pins - the ship sails directly to that point, then continues on with the remainder of the plotted course.
  • Single #: where # is the number of one of the pins - the ship sails directly to that point, then stops.
  • Nav: the Tillerman tells you which pin on the map you are currently en route to, if any.

Last Updated: Mon, 23 Mar 2009 15:48:42 +0000
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