I have spent a ton of time over the last month trying to conceive of what a ship battle would look and play like in this game. Of course, it is not an option to cut ship battles when making a pirate game, they simply must exist, and must be fun. However, there are a lot of technical things to consider since the game takes place up close to the action and I can't easily zoom the camera out because the game is 2D and things would get distorted if the camera wasn't pixel perfect.
|New pirate ship attack event|
One idea that I considered was to have the ship battles be like a separate mini game. This way I would use completely different graphics for them and then after they had played out you could zoom down into the action again. However, I didn't really like separating the ship battles out from the rest of the game very much. Also, it would need to be coded completely separately and need its own art assets and whatnot, which would be expensive. So, I decided not to pursue that route.
|Grappling between ships during a battle|
Ultimately, I have settled with the idea of having the ships be stationary during the battle. Then, characters will grapple back and forth between the ships as they battle for victory. However, I will still allow the player to have some control over the actions of their ship (in future builds). I am thinking of adding the ability to attach upgrades to your ship such as cannons which you could then use to sink the opposing ship. I will have to experiment with a bunch of different ideas for how your ship will play a part in the encounter in order to find out what is most fun.
So, in the comments let me know what you would like to see in the ship battles and maybe I will add it in :-).