Questions on Sailing the LiveSkipper Game

Sailing techniques

What is an Auto Sail?

An Auto Sail is a kind of artificial sail, that can only exists in the Virtual world. It combines the good capabilities of different sails combined in one Sail. It is easy to use, as you kind of have always the correct sail and therefor the one and only Sail available in the Comfort Mode. It will mostly not be the most efficient Sail.

What is Auto Heading?

Auto Heading is a sailing Tool in LiveSkipper. It will keep the angle constant between the Boat Heading and wind direction(TWA), even during wind shift. Some caution on the usage is on its place, because if the wind shifts (un-expectedly ) the boat heading changes with it.
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What is a Auto Pilot?

Strictly speaking, LiveSkipper does not have an Auto Pilot. However some Skippers are using this term for a period of hands-off Sailing. Normally they have engaged the Auto Heading or set a route with Marks and use one of the Modes in Programmed Sailing.

What is an Auto Start

An Auto Start is the start of a Sailing Race with your Boat, while you are not on the computer for a manual Start.

For a New Race or Challenge

Once a new Race is announced, you will have to register for the Race. Now your Boat has joined the Race. You can already explore the Race course and select your Boat Heading and Sail, that You want to use during the Start. Your settings will be registered, but will only be activated at the Starting time of the Race; this is called AutoStart. You may even set some Marks and engage the (W.P.)Scheduler to sail your route along your Marks.

For an existing Race or Challenge

If you want to set up a Cruise or Alternative Race and agree in a group on a common starting time you have more problems with Auto Start; the moment you set a mark and engage either Scheduler mode or Waypoint mode, your boat will start moving; because the Race/Challenge is already on-going.

Use a "Starting Circuit"

You can set a short Starting circuit and sail this course with Marks on Waypoints mode that brings your boat exactly at the right Start time back at the starting point Mark(actually you have a 9-10 minute period to make a timely start, between The Start Time and 9 min. thereafter), which than changes the heading and sail to the required for your timely start./ However this method is not that accurate, especially if you set the “Starting circuit” a long time before the actual Start.

Use a "dynamic" Anchor

Here is a solid method that is applicable for auto-start in all cases.

  • sail your boat to the desired location and put the anchor either the static or the dynamic anchor
  • put the boat-heading on TWA 0°, (this will not move the boat)
  • engage “Auto heading”, (this will keep TWA= 0 and will keep your boat at its position)
  • create a mark in this direction (TWA=0), the mark will move in the same place as your boat's location, (don't worry your boat will not be damaged)
  • Optional but desirable: choose “My boat only” in the settings, (else you maybe cannot see the mark)
  • select the mark and edit time like this “02.11 14:00” {this should be the agreed starting time}
  • with the Mark1 activated, you have to set the heading and sail for the start at 02.11 14:00 gmt.
  • After you set this mark and maybe more marks for your route, activate the Schedule mode. (and at the set time your boat will start sailing as scheduled)

This is only possible for the purple Scheduler; Don't use “Waypoints mode”; your boat may never arrive at Mark1 for the actual start.

There is also a Tutorial for auto-start during a challenge.

Note: the auto-start does NOT work for the Stay Sail on Trimarans without an anchor; for this boat type the Stay sail acts like an anchor. In this case you may sail the first 10 min on Auto Sail and with a next mark at 10min after the start, you select the optimal sail.

My Boat does not follow the Mark

Once you have set Your Mark(s) to indicate the route you want to sail, you are not done. You will have to select which mode of programming to use those Marks, the Waypoints or Scheduler and also Switch it ON. The indication for properly engaged Marks is the green or purple color on the Icon and Marks.
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What side is STARBOARD?

Starboard side of your Boat is the right side of the Boat for the sailor looking towards the Bow. The left side of the boat, still looking towards the Bow is called Port.

What is a STARBOARD Tack

As you can not sail straight into the wind, the wind normally comes from either Starboard side or Port side of your Boat. Starboard Tack is called when the wind is coming from your Starboard side; Port Tack is called when the wind is coming from the Port side of your boat.
Sailing Ship on Port Tack
Sailing Ship on Port Tack.

Note: The Boom of the Main Sail, will hang towards or over the Starboard side of your Boat when you are sailing on Port Tack and visa verse.
For Sailing Boats with multiple Masts, the Boom from the Main Sail will determine as to what Tack the Boat is sailing on.

What a the rules of Sailing?

Lets make it clear: LiveSkipper does not apply the Racing Rules of Sailing, so you are free to sail as you like in a fleet of LiveSkipper Boats. But for those that like to know, or be reminded on the Rules, a summary of the Rules.

The Racing Rules of Sailing (RRS)is issued by the International Sailing Federation (ISAF)and revised on a 4-yearly period. The Edition for 2013-2017. These RRS apply to all Sailing Boats and Ships, Windsurfing Boards and Kite Surfers.

Though the 90 Rules are very detailed there are some 4 basic right of way rules: [Part 2, Section A]

  1. Boats on a port tack shall keep clear of boats on starboard tack (Rule 10).
  2. When boats are on the same tack and overlapped, the boat to windward (the boat closest to the wind) shall keep clear of a leeward boat (Rule 11).
  3. When boats are on the same tack and not overlapped, the boat that is astern shall keep clear of the boat ahead. (Rule 12).
  4. When a boat is tacking (changing tack) it shall keep clear of boats that are not tacking (Rule 13).


And there are some 4 rules with general limitations: [Part 2, Section B]

  1. Even if you have right-of-way, it is your duty to avoid a collision, once it becomes apparent that the other boat is not keeping clear (Rule 14).
  2. If you acquire right of way, you must initially give the other boat room to keep clear, unless you get right of way because of the other boat's actions. (Rule 15)
  3. A boat that changes course, even if it has the right-of-way, shall do so in a manner that gives the burdened boat a chance to “keep clear” (Rule 16).
  4. If you catch up with another boat and you want to pass it to leeward, you may not sail above your proper course i.e. you shall not luff higher than you would have done if that boat wasn't there (Rule 17)


Enjoy your Sailing in a Safe Manner.

How can I stop my Boat from Sailing?

To stop your Boat sailing can be done on different ways:

  • Boat with anchors. The mono-hull Boats in LiveSkipper have an anchor; you find it in the same place as the sails. Dropping the anchor will stop the movement of the Boat, till you lift the anchor by selecting a sail. You even can do this by Programming a Mark and specify the Anchor as sail.
  • Boat without an anchor. Some Trimaran Boats in LiveSkipper do not have an anchor. Here you have to apply the dynamics of Sailing techniques to stop the Boat movement and lock your Boat in to position. To stop a Trimaran you have to turn it into the Wind, TWA = zero. The movements of your boat for each of the sails will stop. To keep it in a stopped situation, you have to engage the Auto Heading, which will lock the wind angle TWA=0. This can also be programmed on the last Mark of your Route. The method, is called also Dynamic anchor and is also possible to use on Mono-hulls.

I set Marks and engaged the Waypoints Mode, but my boat is not starting the race?

Check the setting for My Boat! For Monohulls a Race will start with a Heading of 90° and the Anchor engaged. Setting Mark1 without changing the Sail, does not lift the anchor. Engaging the Waypoint Mode, will normally adjust the boat heading from the active Mark, but not for My Boat. So make sure that at a Race Start you change the Sail to your preferred Sail and point Your Boat to the desired Heading!.
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Do Sea-currents influence the Boat?

In LiveSkipper there is no influence of Sea- nor Ocean currents on the Boats.

I can see only part of Game menu?

Only part of Game menu visible I think that you see this Game Menu and miss some icons. You must have opened the View mode, in which you can follow the progress of boats in a Race, but in this mode you can not Participate. You have to register to join the Race and afterwards as a bonus you will see all icons, if you have engaged Adept sailing Mode.

Also if you have engaged the Comfort Mode in Settings, you will not see all the icons!

What are my Boat coordinates?

You can easily find your Boat coordinates, by clicking on your Boat. A new Boat window will pop-up and show the coordinates of your Boat.
The location is at the foot of the Mast. Pointing the mouse cursor at the foot of the mast will also show the coordinates of your Boat in the Wind Data window, however this is not accurate.

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Dipping a Gate/Finish-line?

Dipping is the movement of approaching a gate line from the reverse side and after passing the line to make a 180 degree turn and sail again this time passing the gate or finish line in the correct direction.
In Liveskipper dipping a gate or finish line is allowed.

Time penalty on tack or heading change?

LiveSkipper does not have a time penalty on a tack, nor on a gybe , nor on a heading change, not on a sail change. Any change made will be activated in the next 10 min. update cycle and act from the location of the last 10 min update before the instruction for the chance was ordered.

Why does my Boat stops just before the Finish-line

In some rare situations, you may find a Finish-line close before a shoreline or some pixels. When the finish line is close before the shoreline, it occurs (often?) that Boats do not pass the finish line but are stopped just before and you will suffer in ranking till you adjust the heading and manage to sail passed the Finish-line. This is a but, the Finish-bug, and you can prevent this from happening by:

  • Sail a slightly different heading to miss the pixel and take care for sufficient water behind the Finish line for your Boat to pass.
  • You may try to locate a W.P., a Green Mark, just between the Finish line and shoreline and stop the Boat from beaching.



Game Interface

I cannot see my Friends Boats

To see the boats of your Friends you need to make two settings.

Boatspeed in Boat Pop-Up

If you click with your mouse on any boat in the Game screen, a window will pop-up with additional information for that boat.
The boat-speed shown is not the actual boat speed, but the boat-speed from the previous 10 min Game update.

There are too many Boats on the Screen

Sometimes the number of Boats can obstruct the view on Gates, Shorelines, Islands etc. You can select the number of boats you want to see in the Boat icons. You can select to see or not the boats of your Friends, provided you don't have too many Friends, or to see or not Other Boats. Normally it clears nicely if the Other Boats are not shown. So only your own Boat is on the screen.

My Boat is blocking view on Gate buoy

You may select to see only a crosshair(+) representing your own Boat, by selection the My Boat only option in the Menu Sailing Options. A small icon and ”+” is visible, where you can remove the icon simple by a click of your mouse. Now you have the full view on the Water.

Why can I not see the Polar Projections?

There can be different reasons for not being able to see the Polar Projections in LiveSkipper Game:

  • anchor dropped. During the start of the game the anchor is engaged and as the anchor does not allow the boat to move, the polar projections can not indicate a distance to sail in x hours. Selecting a sail will make the Polar Projections visible.
  • Projections slider points to 0 hours. The slider on the Polar Projections can indicate a projection between 0 - 24 hours. When the slider sits as 0 hour, no Polar projections will be visible.
  • a Mark outside the screen is the current active location. Polar projections are shown around the active location for the wind conditions at the time of sailing at that location. So if your active Mark falls outside the screen, the Polar projections will not be visible. You may click on the Mark indicator to center the screen on the active Mark, or scroll the mark to your Boat or that Mark that sits on the screen.
  • no wind. this is maybe not very realistic, but if there is no wind and the projection slider is set at low duration, you might not see a projection. You may zoom in further or increase the time span for the projection.

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My Boat Heading won't follow a change in Mark?

Boat Heading does not change with Mark 1 relocation
Sailing at about VMG at Heading 61 degree, see Image. I want to sail more North to prevent grounding and move Mark 1 to the new location. The Boat Heading is not changing with it, why not?
Well this way, it gives you the chance to explore new (better?) routes, without immediately changing the heading of your Boat. So if you want to follow the new route and head your Boat to Mark 1, than after the setting the mark (orange) you have to either engage the Waypoint (green marks)or Scheduler (purple marks) Mode. This will set the route by the marks and change the heading of your Boat to Mark 1 and possible additional marks.
If you don't want to sail in a Programming mode, you may switch it on and of again(orange marks, alternatively without the programming mode, you can also point the ruler in the new heading of Mark 1 and push the Apply option to set the Heading of your Boat.
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What is the highest zoom level?

The highest practical zoom for the Game can be obtained by pushing the “+” zoom-in button till zooming ends. You may also use the scroll wheel on the mouse. This is the maximum zoom-in level that the LiveSkipper game offers you.
However, depending on your operating system, you can go further and zoom-in to a higher level.

For Window operating systems

Window has a magnifier (Windows XP- 9 levels; Windows7 - far ) that is one of the tools in Accessories to increase Accessibility or Ease of Access.

WindowsXP magnifier
This allows you a much larger zoom-level, but remember it increases only the size of the pixels.
Windows7's Magnifier offers some options e.g. a Lens for magnifying a small part of the screen.

For Apple operating system

  • Go to System Preferences
  • Click on Universal Access
  • Turn Zoom ON
  • Press the Command & Option keys along with the ”+”(plus) or ”-”(minus) keys to zoom in and out

 Apple O.S., System Preferences

  • There are some additional zoom options you can choose, like maximum zoom level (up to 20x) but just turning Zoom on will get you zooming-in a lot closer.


Why shows Polar Diagram only half a circle?

In LiveSkipper, the Boat and Sail combinations are symmetrical and a half circle covers less of the Game screen surface. This implies that same values for sails for Starboard and Port wind directions. Example: For a 215 degree heading you may use the values for the 45 degree heading.

Where is Polar Diagram for Auto Sail?

You have to sail in Adept Mode to be able to see the Polar Diagram. Then, You can pull it up, with clicking the Polars Icon in Game menu. Each Sail has its own color. The auto sail should be selected, like any other sail, to show its curve in the Diagram. A Sail is selected when the dot in front of its name is highlighted, with a kind of aurora around the dot.
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Shoreline in the Water?

In some places I see a miss-match between the white shoreline and an Island. E.g. Bornholm, an island in the Baltic sea SE of Sweden. What to use to prevent a beaching?
Indeed there are some cases of miss-match when you zoom-in far enough. In case of doubt consider the white shoreline as the limit of virtual Sailing; and you may make some nice picture of sailing on Land. (don't use the LS map for that situation with your real sailing boat) ;-)

Ranking list limited to 1000?

At the moment (april-2012)there is a flaw in the Ranking lists in LS: it shows only the first 1000 boats. This is hopefully only temporary and will be solved soon , to show all participating boats again.

To find Boats participating in a race with rankings beyond 1000, you have to search on the name of the Boat in the search field on top of Ranking screen. Another way is you look for the boat's silhouette in the Game screen and click on it. The pop-up window will show the ranking of the Boat concerned. To easy find the boat in the game, you may have to make it a “friends” boats.

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en/faq/game.txt · Last modified: 2017/02/13 01:47 by Suratna
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