Block & Tackle is a simple Napoleonic naval strategy game based on the ships and equipment available around the time of the battle of Trafalgar. Block & Tackle is Freeware and is best played by two players.
When you start up Block and Tackle you are asked to choose how many ships you want on each side. The minimum is 1 each and the maximum allowed is 20 each.
The main screen shows the ships in combat, the wind direction and speed, and the damage sustained so far by each side. French ships are shown in blue, British in red. Surrendered ships are shown as small squares. The magnification of the screen changes every four moves, so that all ships are always visible. The 'French' and 'British' buttons let you see a summary of your fleets. Ships are rated from Super 1st to 6th rate and fleets are assembled at random. The display shows you how many ships are still in play. The move button allows the next move to be made. The Options menu allows you to turn on displays of which ships are firing at which enemy ships and of firing ranges. Clicking on an individual ship displays the screen below:
The ship's information includes the rate and lets the player set course and speed. Ships can turn up to 90 degrees in either direction and maximum possible speed depends on the rate of the ship and the wind speed.
When you press the 'Move' button movement and wind-drift are calculated and positions updated. Any enemy ships within firing range are automatically fired upon and damage is calculated. The winner of the game is the player with ships left when the enemy's ships have all been sunk or surrendered.
Use the wind to get in the best attacking position. Ships are lightly armed and vulnerable at the bow and side so try to manoeuvre to attack from these angles with your broadside. An inferior ship can defeat a superior one in this way.