View Full Version : Showing Sails on Ships

10-14-2009, 10:51 AM
So here's a little pinnace I've been working on and I'm wondering about how to show the sails. Currently I'm thinking semi transparent white overlaid over the top. Any thoughts?


10-14-2009, 11:37 AM
Seems like on top-down ships I've seen in the past, you see only the bulge as it catches the wind. Semi transparent might look cool as well though.

10-14-2009, 12:33 PM
I too would go for white sails billowing at what ever directing you need - if it's the plain forward sails or the spinnaker type (which is sort of taking a quarter on the side look - or used on larger ships where the spinnaker is on the front and the rest are the plain facing forward type). I'm not sure what the correct nortacal terms are for them as you could probably guess.

So, in short, I'd have the sails as they would be (100% opacity) with full wind behind them as seen from above.

I think transparent would make the sails look like they're actually a transparent material.

...unless, (as I think maybe the case after re-reading your post,) that this ship is going to be THE map and not simply an element on it, then having them transparent (including the bow too - basically everything besides the mast posts) overlaid on top at a lot less than 50% opacity (just so they're noticeable but don't 'interfere' with the deck at all and I'm thinking perhaps at the 20-30% mark off the top of my head).

10-14-2009, 02:06 PM
Indeed, it will be the map. There's a (much) larger ship in the works too so I'm nailing the style down on the little one. Thanks for the input.

10-14-2009, 02:33 PM
If the map is for roleplay, the sails don't matter nearly as much as the rigging. Can you add lines and shadows to indicate rigging?

10-14-2009, 04:26 PM
I'm with JW there. You don't need the sails if it's going to be a map, but for roleplay purposes you'll probably need ropes and rigging and maybe the crossbeam things. If you were doing this in levels, like it was a castle, then I'd put the sails in and the top level would be the crow's nest.

10-14-2009, 06:56 PM
I agree that the sails are effectively irrelevant for tabletop play but they look so pretty, and ships look just a little naked without them. I agree that the rigging is more important. I'll see if I can get something that looks good.

10-14-2009, 07:44 PM
Okay, a new version with some rigging and sails. Is this just too bitty?

The png:

... and the object in use:


10-14-2009, 07:53 PM
So, is this an object for use on another map with the larger boat to be a map itself? If this is just an object to display what it looks like in action then unfurl them sails and let em blow (ie show em at full opacity).

10-14-2009, 08:45 PM
The map will be the sea, and the ships will be the movable objects on the map - both of them can be tactical battlemaps for players to fight on. So the deck needs to be visible in both cases.

10-14-2009, 10:54 PM
Yep, since you're using the ship as a tactical space, I'd say those sails are pretty much spot on. I don't think they're too bitty at all.