I asked someone the other day to describe an exciting or memorable occasion from their time playing Puzzle Pirates. Having asked that, I then tried to work out my own top events, and was a little surprised to realize that three of my likely top five were sinking battle situations (one PvP, two blockades). The other two were competitive player situations as well, but not PvP in a sea battle sense. I've had fun at other times, of course, but perhaps the adrenaline rush and exhilaration at those competitive times was what made them so memorable.
One of these events was my first ever sinking PvP battle. The whole thing was a huge tingling rush from start to finish. The feeling that every single move mattered, every second puzzling, every decision. It was urgent and compelling and electric. It broke the comfortable "puzzle, puzzle, puzzle" blankie that pillaging sometimes has me develop. For the sake of completeness, I'll admit that I lost the battle - that doesn't stop it being one of the single most exciting experiences in all my time playing. I've had happier and more fun experiences, but this was nerve-janglingly exciting.
Two of the other events involved blockades. [In fact, as I type this I'm remembering more blockades I'd want to be on my list - very different blockades on various oceans.] And again, it's the sinking situation that captures me. I think sinking blockades have a wholly distinct atmosphere from non-sinking blockades, particularly if you are (or know) the person who owns the ships! My best experiences have been when I've been lucky enough to be on ships with a crew committed to surviving*. Getting into the action, moving, shooting, getting shot, mad damage control skill, just getting away with it, controlling flags and fighting off ship after ship challenging us. With a good blockade navver, and skilled puzzlers, whole blockades can go by full of action but without sinking, and the near-misses, the triumphs, and the coming-back-from-the-brink-of-death moments are such fun!
* as opposed to a crew committed to squeaking "wen r we sinkng wil i get an injry lets sink NOW does ne1 want 2 b mi frend y r we just sitting here"** several times a second like deathwish goldfish whose ADHD medication has had unexpected yet colorful interactions with the short term memory shock therapy.
** the answers being "Hopefully never", "Probably not"***, "No.", "I wouldn't count on it" and "We want to win." respectively.
*** Yes, you're right. You could dedicate yourself to sinking battles, and sink 150 times with not so much as a bruise to your upper arm, the ultimate Indestrucible Pirate, and that mate who didn't know what a blockade was, the one who ran around the ship like a demented tourist the whole time, pointing out every passing rock and whirlpool helpfully to the navver, he'll have one sink and be heard over /jcr yelling "woo i got a eye pach!!!!!!!!!!!!! o man i dont like it y dint i get a fish cn u where a fish on yer sholder does ne1 want 2 b mi frend". I just know that Apollo or Sun will get an injury some day during a random event blockade. And then, just to really annoy me, the ungrateful jerks will probably get them healed. -rolls eyes-
I'd like to add a brief panegyric to hotly contested blockades, too. Whether they're sinking or non-sinking, closely fought blockades are always great, to participate in or to watch. Knowing that just one sink at the right moment could make all the difference to the round, to the island ownership. My main regret about those blockades is that if I'm participating, I don't get to see enough of the whole-board action. I'd love to be able to stop what I was doing and just watch for a bit - but of course, drifting aimlessly and admiring the scenery in hotly contested blockades isn't likely to be a popular idea.
In conclusion... go out and shoot stuff. boomy is gud 4 u
soz i gtg now.