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Converting Weapons and Warriors Ships for Gaming

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Hey all, I thought I'd share a little guide on how I converted two Weapons and Warriors pirate ships for gaming. These guys are usually for sale at a reasonable price ($25-30) on ebay as part of the W&W Pirate Battle game. They have the added bonus of coming with two smaller boats and lots of good extras like cannons and palm trees.




Here is the unmodified ship. First I clipped the little extra bits that are for the W&W game, and then I puttied over any gaps.





Then I gave the whole ship a couple of coats of brown primer. For terrain and other projects like this, I usually use Krylon primer. It does just fine when there is not a lot of small details to obscure. I primed the sails white. The main mast, mizzen mast, and bowsprit all detach.


I picked out some detail colors and painted the decks a lighter color. The ships turned out like this:




The two small ships and the two boats in the foreground are from W&W. The big ship in the back is a resin model.


If you are looking for some ships for your games, this might be the way to go!

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That game is a treasure trove for pirate gaming.


The little "brigantines" are probably appropriate for 20mm scale minis.  The Reaper "Soul Cannon" lines up nicely with the gun ports on the sides.  Even though they're rather small for 25-32mm scale, I've still used them as decoration for dock scenes just to spruce things up and make the docks look a bit busier.




For variety, I have used a number of Warhammer "bitz" -- spare banner pieces, shield emblems, and other embellishments -- to decorate them, with spare HeroClix or Mage Knight minis for alternative figureheads.




The smaller "skiffs," once cleared of the raised circular rings (for notching in the pirate minis) work rather well, and are a little more "scale-flexible" than the brigantines: I've used them for 25-32mm scale minis, and they'd probably look fine for 20mm as well.



I've also converted one of the brigantines to have lateen sails (and removed the figurehead to replace the forward spar with an angled prow) to have a ship with a more Mediterranean look, for my "Pirates of the Barbary Coast" adventures.






The non-firing "target cannons" from the game are excellent for use with 25-32mm scale minis as deck cannons.  While they crowd into the deck space of the "brigantine" boats included in the game (to the point where there's no room for any crew to fire them), they're perfect as replacement cannons on the decks of my converted Mega Bloks pirate ships.




The pirate minis that come with the game come in two poses: there are two "captain" models, and then a bunch of "pirates" that each come in the same pose.  They're somewhere in the neighborhood of 25mm scale (and not Reaper's "heroic" definition of that scale), so they're within the ballpark of being usable in the mix of 25-28mm pirate minis, depending upon how much of a stickler you are for scale, but they'd still be on the shrimpy side.


But wait, that's not all!  :D  The plastic treasure chests are good enough to serve as decor, and the big plastic tower that comes with the game can be fairly easily converted (once its pop-up "exploding" feature is properly "disarmed" by removing the rubber band and fixing the parts in place) to serve as a piece of terrain.  The plastic palm trees are made to twist into the cardboard "island" pieces that come with the game, but if you give them some new bases (a bit of putty or air-dry clay to fill it out, and set upon a washer, for instance), they make for some pretty nice scatter terrain.


Here is a picture of the palm trees and chests from Boardgamegeek:



Once upon a time, it was possible to order replacement parts directly from Pressman -- and I got a few more "target cannons" and palm trees that way -- but that was a long time ago.


Here's a link for the board game on Boardgamegeek: https://boardgamegeek.com/boardgame/7184/weapons-warriors-pirate-battle


This game set actually came out in several versions, some of which I occasionally see on Ebay.  


First, there is the "Weapons & Warriors Pirate Battle" game, which is the most common version that I can tell, and has all the stuff we're talking about here.  The same game (same art, same contents, near as I can tell) was also released as "Blackbeard's Treasure" from "Peter Pan" (UK).  The game was also re-released under the "Siege" line, as "Siege Pirate Battle Game."  There was a Weapons & Warriors combo pack that had pieces from both the Pirates game AND one of the Weapons & Warriors castle siege sets -- but I don't recall what exactly it was called.


About the only thing I couldn't find any real use for would be the giant launcher cannons and their plastic cannonball ammunition.  But ... hey, they're toy spring-loaded cannons that launch little plastic cannonballs.  :)  I'm sure SOMETHING can be done with them, if one is so inclined.

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