Rigging is one of the skills o' piracy. Like Sailing it is accessed via the ship's rigging. Also like Sailing, yer performance in Rigging will make the ship go faster. A ship may contain a mixture of Sailors and Riggers at any given time and each will be contributing to the ship's speed.
The Rigging pieces are arranged on a hexagonal grid of ropes surrounded by six pulleys. Each of these ropes can be moved in either of two directions to slide all of the pieces along it. Yer task is to form these pieces into chains of three or more matching pieces and to connect these chains to the active pulley.
The active pulley can be identified by the glow that surrounds it. After each move, any chain of three or more like pieces that includes a piece touching the active pulley will be cleared from the board and will help the ship accelerate. After each move, whether a chain was cleared or not, the active pulley will move clockwise around the board to the next pulley.
Each piece cleared from the board as part of a chain will be added as a new loop to the rope coils at the bottom of the puzzle. Once ye've collected twenty loops, those loops will become a Wild piece and be added to the board. This piece will match with any chain and can be quite useful in forming longer chains.
In addition to the eight normal types of rigging pieces, there are four types of special pieces, each earned through a different display of nimble rigging. Special pieces cannot be used as the start of a chain but can come in quite handy midway through a chain. Note that a particular feat will sometimes result in a Wild piece rather than its normal reward. This is either due to the difficulty level on which ye are playing or the current board configuration.
|Wild - This piece will always match any adjacent chain. This can be a convenient way to connect two short chains into one long chain. It is earned each time ye collect twenty loops into the coils.|
|Gaff - In addition to always matching any adjacent chain, the Gaff will always add all adjacent pieces, regardless of color, to any chain it is part of. This can help add a few extra pieces to make a merely good chain exceptional. It is earned by surrounding, or "looping" non-matching pieces with a chain.|
|Tar - Besides always matching any adjacent chain, the Tar will leave behind a group of matching pieces after it is cleared. The pieces added to the board where a tar was cleared and in any adjacent spaces will always match in color, except in rare cases where a special piece is added in one of these spaces. The adjacent matching pieces are often able to quickly form into a future chain. The tar is earned by clearing a chain of at least length five which leaves no other pieces matching that chain behind on the board.|
|Splice - The splice is the only directional special piece, as indicated by the orientation of the rope on the piece. If one end of the splice is adjacent to a chain being pulled, the other end will set off a second chain of whatever type of piece is on that other end. This means that two different colors can cleared at the same time. Splices are earned by "linking" to a pulley which is not adjacent to the active pulley. Linking a pulley is done by forming a chain that touches both the active pulley and the linked pulley.|
Each chain cleared will help the ship go a bit faster until it reaches maximum speed. Longer chains will provide significantly higher scores than short ones. Additionally, looping, linking, clearing a color, and clearing twenty rope coils each provide a score bonus. Like all duty puzzles, yer rigging score is based on how efficiently you use yer moves. Repeated moves for little or no effect and prolonged periods of inactivity will both lower your score.
The lowered blue sail on the left is contributing only minimally to the speed of the vessel, whereas the golden glowing sail to the right is contributing mightily! Font-size of score feedback is a good indicator of just how good a chain was.
Blockades & Maneuvers
In blockades where maneuvers are enabled, rigging takes on an additional level of complexity. Chains are still cleared via the active pulley as usual. If ye are rigging well, some of the pieces ye receive will have a maneuver shape in addition to their normal color. If any of these is cleared as part of a chain, it will be activated and shown on the next active pulley. If during the next move you clear the same shape again, your ship will gain progress towards the associated maneuver.
Although progress may be earned towards any maneuver, the navigator may request a specific maneuver. This requested maneuver is shown in the maneuver indicator along with the current progress of the bilgers, carpenters, and riggers/sailors on the ship towards that maneuver. The progress bar for rigging is shown in yellow and wider than the others while in the rigging puzzle. Once each bar is filled to the top, that maneuver will be added to the navigator's tokens and the ship will perform its maneuver; moving with great speed or agility, firing powerful cannon shots, or dropping flotsam behind the ship to slow and possibly damage opposing ships.