I have a question for the modding community regarding a change to the group behaviour of naval squadrons in combat. I'm a veteran of Age of Sail 1 and 2 and have been an enthusiastic supporter of Creative Assembly and the Total War series from the very beginning.
Apart from the appalling AI in Empire (why the hell doesn't the AI withdraw from a naval engagement when it's hopelessly overmatched and who in their right mind puts a fleet of galleys in line astern formation by default for God's sake!) there is one amendment that would move the game substantially towards a more realistic flavour of 18th Century naval combat - the ability to regulate the speed of a squadron while in formation.
As it currently stands, individual ships will default to battle sail when commanded to move or engage an enemy ship; for those who are not aware, this was done whist in combat for two very good reasons: first to reduce the amount of damage suffered by the foresail and mainsail (the big ones at the bottom of the fore and main masts) and to reduce the possibilty of fire reaching the rigging. However, whist in group formation the leading ship of the squadron crams as much canvass on the yards as humanly possible and leads the squadron along the enemy line like a rugby team heading for the bar in a crowded pub! - You can almost visualise your admiral baring his arse over the taffrail as he pulls ahead of the enemy's lead ship!
Can anybody tell me if it's possible to mod the game to enable the sail settings in the control quadrant for the lead ship in a squadron (furled sails, battle sail, battle with topsails and full sails) to regulate the speed of the formation and would anyone be willing to do it? I simply don't have the skills or a good working knowlege of how the programme operates.