There are a lot of battle strategies and tactics in sea warfare, but in this game a lot of them are reduced because of the poor variety of commands you can give to other ships. There are for commands you can give: Stay in Place, Attack Enemy Ships, Evade Enemy Ships and Follow Me. The trick is how to use them and which one use with certain ships.
Battle Tactics Edit
There a some battle tactics you can use to sink ships. There are three of them I will share: Powder, Oil and Mortar.
We all know how to commonly use powder: we throw from the back of our ship an make it a "sea mine". But it can be also use in another way. When you are next to an enemy ship, independetly of it's size (in fact, the bigger the better), you can throw the barrel from the size in order to make it landing IN the enemy ship. This will make massive damage to it. This is a good tactic against strong, big and slow ships like the First Rate.
Mortar are also very powerful against ships. But its difficult to hit moving objects when the projectile (bomb) takes so much time to land. That's why we use some tactics for a much effective use.
Usually, by instinct, we use the mortar when an enemy ship is chasing us in a strait line. But we can also use it to attack enemy ships, especially big and slow ships like the First Rate. And how do we do it? Well, there is always the possibility to hit other ships in movement as long as they pass throw the mortar mark, but the most probably thing is that you will only hit a few shots.
A way to improve it's effectiveness is by "inmovilize" the enemy. You could destroy it's sails, or you can target it when they are sailing against the wind. In this last one, when you attack a town, the wind usually adapts to you favor, making you in a windward position, and making enemy ships in leeward position (the wind comes from the west an the enemy is on the east, for example). This gives you some seconds before they adapt to the situation, ideal for fast ships to bombing them (like the corvette, frigates or sloops of war).
Other way is to make them sail throw a specific route and concentrating in a point where you can attack them (I will explain it in the next paragraph).
When you throw oil barrels, you sure have noticed that any AI ships won't sail throw it (if they can make an evasion manuever in time). Althought they barely make damage, the fact that any ship will avoid them can give you a huge advantage.
Knowing this, you can use them to make barriers or to make traps. When you make barriers, you force the enemy to go around it, making them concentrate in one or two points, perfect for bombing them. When you make a trap, you make a barrier with a hole where you can lay powder as a trap or bomb the zone.
Battle Strategies Edit
As I said before, there aren't a lot of strategies available due to the lack of commands, and I don't know much, so if you know some, please add it.
When your fleet is in complete disorder, make them retreat away from the enemy. When you do this, try to make them retreat to a specific and open point (take control of them if necesary). When doing this, you regroup your fleet, making an good moment to resume the attack as one.