Join the most epic naval battle!

Make your mark upon our West Indies saga in "Doomsday"!


Peace with Spain was signed in February 1720. In late April its news arrived to the West Indies, so all the Navies got allied against the common foe – pirates, making their trade more difficult to survive. Which side are you on?

Be ye a pirate, a naval officer, a slave or a lady, you will find a place aboard one of our four ships or live on a paradise island. Men aboard any ship are strongly recommended as first characters, and civilians as secondary ones. No more female sailors are allowed.

We are not the usual sandboxy RPG, neither a narrative-driven one, but a story-focused writing community where each actively writing character can make a difference and an impact on the overall plot. We are writing collaboratively a coherent story with many sideplots aside of it. We also have guides to help you with the time setting, and are more influenced by historical events rather than following them by the history books!

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Elena - Fleet Admiral
Mascha - Fleet Admiral
Alecto - Pilot


Port de Paix dwellers

The inhabitants of Port de Paix, a French colony, are now busy with celebrating Saint Jean d'Ete and a wedding among the highest nobility. Time for everyone who happens to be in Port de Paix to know them better… and to add your personal flavour to the holiday!



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Scribbling Scholar


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Sep 20 2016, 06:25 AM


“Before the Mast” is officially 74 months old, i.e. more than six years old! Warm thanks to all the crew, to everybody who has made it possible for our writing community to flourish and for the story to get further.

I am also happy to announce you that RPG-Directory has selected "Before the Mast" for the Hall of Fame - a visible place on the sidebar to display the button for 30 weeks, because our site has won the Members' Choice award for 5 times until now.

Our plot has been updated, reflecting the passed six years “Before the Mast”, and I avail myself of this opportunity to remind you all that most of your characters have been around for several story months. If your character had a birthday since you brought him/ her “Before the Mast”, please edit their age in the bios. If you have forgotten to add the birthday, it is the right moment for it. Also, if your character has undergone something really important meanwhile (engagement? marriage? promotion? a child’s birth? changing ships?), please update the bio with these developments.

As per the 1-st of October, statistics show that we have 36 male active characters and 24 female. Given the focus of our story on adventures at sea, more men are needed aboard the ships – see our ship rosters for the free spots. For the purpose of the statistics, only the writers who have posted in September are counted here. However, if they have posted only with one character out of several they have, all their characters are counted as active.)

Active members: 11
Active characters: 60, out of which:

Pirates = 10
English Navy = 6
French Navy = 11
Privateers = 4
Civilians = 29

All the ships, especially the British Navy, are waiting for more crew for the adventures they have ahead. A secondary character aboard the French privateers ship would also be welcome. Bring your characters to fight for the King and crown… or for their own freedom, and we promise you further action, drama and fun for them!

There are plenty of new things “Before the Mast”, looking forward to your participation, as they give opportunities for more characters than they actually seem to join. There are new and already ongoing threads which would welcome your participation. We are now in the process of plotting the kidnapping of a princess and actually writing the scene. But due to the fact that not many people are contributing to plotting the story so that we can see the whole image of it, the participation to writing it is also sporadic. Let's change this actively! We are writing both sides; we can make it an interesting story, as long as we want it to be. Exactly like the stories we like reading; don't think only about your character - you can write enough others around: servants, soldiers...

We have also a discussion on the next story months here, counting, at the same time, as an activity check, because what better proof could it be that you are invested in the present and future of the site? Looking forward to hearing your ideas!

Remember, our story can get as epic and interesting as you want to contribute to writing it! We give anyone the opportunity to get involved in all stories, with their own characters or, if they have no characters in the faction having an adventure, by writing NPCs, which are anyone’s to use!

We warmly welcome the British Navy lieutenant Geoffrey Palmer, written by Benji, and the pirate carpenter's mate Daniel Jacobson, written by Reza, who got integrated in the story quickly. Looking forward to new epic stories!

The spotlight of the month is now on the inhabitants of PORT DE PAIX, a French colony, are now busy with celebrating SAINT JEAN D'ETE and A WEDDING among the highest nobility. Time for everyone who happens to be in Port de Paix to know them better… and to add your personal flavour to the holiday!

As for thread/ quote spotlight, despite being the newest recruit aboard, the British Navy lieutenant Geoffrey Palmer, written by Benji, in the thread Another reassignment, deserves highlighted for the best in character quote this month:

"Let's hope the wind is on our side," he paused for a moment whilst the Captain asked a question. "Both are of interest to me, however if I was to talk from a personal perspective, the fighting side interests me greatly. Call me competitive if you will but when locked in combat with another, I don't see losing as an option."

The new writer and character are showing the eagerness a lieutenant awaits a confrontation with the pirates, and his high morale, the key to further promotion. Congratulations and way to go!

Many thanks to Jouko and to Mascha, who had been the most involved ones in the plots for June 1720.

The “Histories and Chronicles of the West Indies” and the yearly celebrations are the whole site’s, not anybody’s monopoly, and I really appreciate when people get involved and show that we are a community!

Taking part in the community, giving feedback, talking about your characters is also important, and spending a few idle moments on a game while waiting for an answer is never a bad idea. However, many of our crew haven’t ever posted in the introduction thread, and nobody except their immediate writing partners know them. This is something to remediate in the introduction thread on the 1720 page then! (With your OOC account, remember!)

The discussion about characters and you and characters and time is also interesting, and the dare game is meant to bring more lively and interesting scenes for our story and for our writing community.

Many of our crewmates haven’t ever posted in the introduction thread, and nobody except their immediate writing partners know them. This is something to remediate, as we have also changed the former introduction thread into an introduction forum, which would enable a new thread for each member, to welcome them, to discuss with them and help them get acquainted with our writing community. This forum comprises also a questionnaire meant to find common points between newer and older members, and facilitate discussion subjects. So, please open a thread where answering to the introduction questionnaire, and browse the other replies, looking for people sharing any common interests with you. Now the introduction threads can be an open discussion with the others, for strengthening community and friendship among writing partners!

You know also that we need fresh blood of the history-loving, writing and dedicated kind… I am making an appeal to all of you to bring other friends of yours who are into writing swashbuckling adventures, because the word of mouth is the most powerful way of advertising. In addition to this, the ones who have blogs, MySpace, LiveJournal or InsaneJournal accounts, please advertise “Before the Mast” and try to bring new members. Those who have Facebook accounts – please “Like” our page and spread the word! Those with Twitter and Tumblr, follow us and retweet/ reblog some of our messages! We have the site’s Twitter, Tumblr, Facebook and Deviant Art group links in the sidebar, just a click away – but how successful can they be if even some of the members ignore them?

Voting daily in the topsites also helps… You can find them below the affiliates, under the heading "Vote for us!"

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Help us be seen and grow with gaining new valuable members! You can give your contribution to our site’s growth, and you’ll have more people and characters to write with! Each person’s effort counts in making our writing community better, sounder or bigger!

We wish you happy writing and a happy autumn!
Jun 30 2015, 08:30 AM
The contest is simple:
1) the character who makes 20 posts in the period 1 July to 1 August 2015 wins a prize and

2) the highest posters (a.- character and b.- player with several characters adding up) win an additional prize.


Andrea Costa – 168 posts initially -
Sol Galvez - 158 posts initially -
Thierry Vounos – 152 posts initially -
Raoul Duval – 140 posts initially -
Pieter de Wyntere – 138 posts initially -
Sara Mitchell – 129 posts initially -
Maribel Vargas – 126 posts initially -
Santiago Moreno – 124 posts initially -
Rowan Bloodworth – 123 posts initially -
Gaspard Desjardins – 117 posts initially -
Wesley Stewart – 83 posts initially -
Casimir St. John – 82 posts initially -
Odette Joubert – 76 posts initially -
Anani Fireflint – 69 posts initially -
Carmen de Lafont – 68 posts initially -
Iwan Rowlands – 66 posts initially -
Nicole Cavalier - 63 posts initially -
Jean-Baptiste Lafont - 63 posts initially -
Jack Kildare - 58 posts initially -
Julien Bauldry - 57 posts initially -
Mikael Akselsen - 56 posts initially -
Jasmine de Cormeilles - 56 posts initially -
Nathanial Bretagne - 52 posts initially -
Adrien Lefévre - 45 posts initially -
Henri d'Estrées - 43 posts initially -
Mora Vargas - 39 posts initially -
Dianne Lefévre - 35 posts initially -
Jonathan Willett - 34 posts initially -
Christine de Sorel - 32 posts initially -
Barnabas Tweedle - 32 posts initially -
Michaela Fouchet - 31 posts initially -
Finn Merrick - 31 posts initially -
Joanna Croft - 24 posts initially -
Marc Lafont - 23 posts initially -
Alain de Cormeilles - 23 posts initially -
Lucia Pascal - 23 posts initially -
Giles Laurent - 22 posts initially -
William Trevelyan - 21 posts initially -
Madeleine Magnúsdóttir - 21 posts initially -
Christian Lécuyer - 20 posts initially -
Katerina Meshcheryakova - 16 posts initially -
Monica Perez - 15 posts initially -
Julienne de la Mer - 13 posts initially -
Jonathan Creahin - 13 posts initially -
Julio Marti - 13 posts initially -
Beatrice Rinaldi - 12 posts initially -
Raymond Wick - 12 posts initially -
Marina Costa - 10 posts initially -
Constant Delacroix - 6 posts initially -
Edmund Campbell - 6 posts initially -
Nathaniel Hartman - 6 posts initially -
Thanos Perivolakis - 5 posts initially -
Aine Stern - 4 posts initially -
James Kincaid - 3 posts initially -
Valerian Severn - 3 posts initially -
Gwenevere Thorne - 3 posts initially -
Ira Thorne - 2 posts initially -
Lewis Ashfield - 1 post initially -
Victoria Forrester - 1 post initially -
Jose Silveira - 1 post initially -
Jul 4 2014, 12:50 PM
[dohtml]<center><div style="width: 450px; background-image: url(''); -moz-border-radius: 5px 5px 5px 5px; border-radius: 5px 5px 5px 5px;">
<div style="width: 440px; text-align: justify; color: 383838">
Charges of mutiny against superiors and murder<p></div>
<div style="text-align:justify;width:440px;">
<p>In front of the Court Martial hereby assembled, the following sailors of the flagship Le Phenix have been judged and found guilty of mutiny against superiors and murder of officers: </p>
<p>- Fernand Boissier, foretopman, guilty of murdering the third Lieutenant Remi Forrestier, in complicity with Louis Gagnier, who shares the same indictment</p>
<p>- Elouan Quervaric, foretopman, guilty of murdering the boatswain, Jacques Fresne</p>
<p>- Jean Ortie, topman, guilty of inciting to mutiny and taking the lead</p>
<p>- Patrick Mercier, rigger, guilty of inciting to mutiny and attacking the boatswain’s mate Antoine Lemieux. </p>
<p>The charges against the prisoners are based on their own confessions and the testimonies of witnesses:</p>
<p>The Testimony</p>
<p>Witnesses of all ranks from Le Phenix, ship boys, seamen and officers, testified that on 25-th of January, in the forenoon watch, a sudden revolt broke up when the boatswain and his mate applied harsh punishments to the seamen on watch for minor offences. In an attack of anger, boatswain Jacques Fresne climbed up the rigging and threw the rigger Claude Peche down from the rigging, causing his death. The youngest sailor being liked by his crewmates, and the boatswain apparently not being at his first attempt of such cruelty, even if these details hadn’t been known by the officers until thorough investigation by the Court Martial, the sailors rebelled to this treatment. </p> <p>Elouan Quervaric, who had been repeatedly the target of boatswain Jacques Fresne’s punishments, and who was also Claude Peche’s mentor, engaged in fight with the boatswain, throwing him into the sea. Despite attempts of rescuing him, the boatswain drowned.</p>
<p>Jean Ortie, Patrick Mercier, Louis Gagnier and Benoit Martin were among the leaders of the mutiny who attacked the three boatswain’s mates. </p>
<p> When Lieutenant Remi Forrestier approached to investigate what happened, he killed Nicolas Baudet, rigger. This made the sailor’s crewmates, Fernand Boissier, Louis Gagnier, Benoit Martin, Jean Ortie and a few others to crowd upon him and Fernand Boissier stabbed the third lieutenant to death. </p>
<p>The mutineers, under the lead of the above mentioned men, proceeded to write the grievances of the sailors in a petition to the Admiralty. The petition was analysed in the Admiralty Board and a part of their revendications were accepted, following to be the subject of a decision to be issued these days.</p>
<p>The Verdict: <p>
<p>Therefore the above mentioned sailors of Le Phenix are adjudged and sentenced to be carried from the prison to the place of execution without the gates of Fort Louis, and there within the flood marks to be hanged by the neck, till dead, in front of all the Army and Navy men, in a public execution. To be clear for everyone that who incites a mutiny or who hits an officer will receive no mercy. The sentence shall be carried out tomorrow 11-th of February 1720, starting with 10 o'clock in the morning.<p>
<p>And the Lord have mercy upon their souls.</p>
<p>Another sailor, Robert Poirier, has been judged for murdering his crewmate Benoit Martin, but the court martial found him not guilty, since he had acted in self defense upon the victim’s attack, the victim being one of the initiators of the mutiny as well. So, Robert Poirier is acquitted for having attempted to uphold the order and he had not sided with the mutineers. All investigated witnesses testified in his favour.</p>
<p>During the investigations evidence showed that the boatswain’s mate, Antoine Lemieux, has been found guilty of repeatedly and seriously mistreating the sailors subordinated to him, therefore he is dismissed from the French Navy.</p>
<p>All the other commissioned and warrant officers of Le Phenix are cleared of any doubt in respect with their conduct aboard the ship before and during the mutiny attempt. Lieutenant Christian Lecuyer, acting captain, lieutenant Julien Bauldry and Commander Christophe de Vandes had proved good leadership and sense of duty, acting within their prerrogatives and restoring order with minimal losses.</p>
Given under my hand and seal this tenth day of February, year of our Lord 1720.
<br><div style="width: 440px; text-align: right; color: 383838 ">
<i>Raoul Duval, Rear Admiral of the West Indies</i><br></div>
<div style="display:block;text-align:right;"><img src=""></div></div>
<center>made by Moru</center>
Nov 3 2013, 03:03 PM
We all know that different threads, while being played/written simultaneously, happen at different times in game. Sometimes this can bring confusion to a new player, in other cases somebody doesn't see the connection between his character and another one until looking at the clear timeline of events which shows if they could have been in the same place at the same time or not.

This thread is to help keep the time line in order for everybody, and also to provide a complete chronicle of our story evolution.

Please add an update here when you update your personal thread tracker with a newly started thread, to help avoid temporal issues.

Also make sure to check this board calendar before tagging someone else to join a new thread.

Miscellaneous Threads
January 1720
February 1720
March 1720
April 1720
May 1720
June 1720
July 1720

The code to introduce another thread is:


[SIZE=7][color=red] [u]date [/u][/color] [/size]
[SIZE=4][color=indianred]Place, exact location - [*thread URL]Thread title [/URL*] [/SIZE][/color]
[SIZE=1][b]CHARACTERS:[/b] the involved characters
[b] SUMMARY:[/b]  thread summary [/SIZE]
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Credits. This skin was made by MORU specifically for BEFORE THE MAST and rethemed by MASCHA.
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