Passing the Final Exam Made Simple!
If you’re taking the Final Exam you are more than likely a new guy like me trying to level-up, and if you have taken it already you know just hard and almost impossible it is to pass. The two enemy A.I. ships are relentless, they make few if any mistakes and will pound you to pieces in minutes.
I have found a simple solution that will work for everyone. After all, it worked for me and I passed the exam!
Before explaining how to do it, let me pass on my observations about the strengths and weaknesses of the A.I. Enemy ships you’ll be going up against.
- The Enemy AI’s only weakness is that they are unable to repair their ships, and as you damage them, they get progressively worse. I used that against them.
- They are relentless and will never stop pursuing you.
- Although they are really good shots, they only use ball ammo and are always aiming for your hull to sink you. Unless they get a lucky shot or you do something stupid, they do very little damage to your sails and masts.
- Although their tactics are simple, they make few tactical mistakes.
Here is how I defeated them and passed the test. First, the game gives you an hour and a half of real time to pass the test which is plenty of time to make this work. You get no extra credit for doing it fast or heroically. Therefore, I went with the long cowards way to pass.
In short what I did was run like hell with the wind using full sails and slowly beat the crap out of them!
Let’s assume for this description that your ship is facing North at the start of the game. As soon as the time started, I went to full sails, load all guns with ball ammo except for my stern gun, which I loaded with chain. In my case the Enemy turned West and presented me with a broadside. I then turned North-East, fired back and ran. In my case the wind was blowing from the South to the North. The direction you turn makes no difference as long as you are running with the wind or abeam. Be careful NEVER to turn too far into the wind and end up in Chains. You will be killed!
The Enemy immediately turned East to purse. Now I had them both on my stern. As I ran, I peppered the closest one with chain from my stern chasers. I turned off my bow guns using F5 as I was not going to be needing them anymore, thus allocating more crew to repairs.
As I ran, I would continuously swing left and right to present the enemy with my broadsides, being careful never to get too close or allowing them to get alongside. If they fell too far behind, I would drop to Battle sails, fire a broadside, go back to full sails and run again. As I did this, they too would swing around and fire on me, and as a result I was started taking hull damage. But here is where I exploited their main weakness, I could repair my damage, they could not!
When my damage became noticeable or critical, I would turn off all my guns (F5) except my stern chasers and commit the whole crew to repairs while running away at my best speed. While running I kept peppering them with chain and grape from my stern. I did this every night.
For the most part I would concentrate my fire on the enemy ship that was the most damaged. Eventually I managed to cause enough damage to one of the enemy ships that it took on water and sank, then I just concentrated on the remaining ship using the same tactics until it too sank. Total time used was 1 real hour, with 30 minutes to spare.
If any time during the exam you lose a mast or receive serious damage that cannot be fixed, just Surrender and start over. There is no way you can win otherwise against the two enemy ships once you are damaged.
This may not be the most glamorous or courageous method to pass the Final Exam, but no one will know anyway. You passed, that is all that matters. Go get them!