Ok, so not such a catchy subtitle, guess it only works in space. Anyways this is one of only 3 hoists in the game. Hoist is basically just a fancy word for "amazing treasure ship!" Seriously, it can explore an island just by touching it! And with the addition of the Secret Hold keyword, you aren't going to be losing any of that treasure, as secret hold negates anything that would let an opponent steal or eliminate treasure, except for the few and far between crew/ships that can take UT's away. This can be great against an enemy that tries to ram and board your treasure runners to steal your gold to keep you from winning, especially if they try to make that their main way of getting gold. Of the three, it is the best, you can thank American ingenuity for that! It has the best default speed (the Buscador can escape enemies faster), the best cargo space (EIGHT!) and the second best cannons (but you're not gonna use it for fighting) and is in the middle in terms of cost (17 compared to 14 and 20)
It's only use is as a treasure ship. It doesn't have the cannons to be a fighting ship, but with good speed, EIGHT CARGO SPACE, and a hoist and secret hold, you would be INSANE to use it as anything else. With the hoist you can pick up treasure from an island you can touch, even if you haven't explored it yet, because you do both as a free action! With that kinda cargo space, you can all but clean off any island in the seven seas at one go (especially if you have an American cargo master in your fleet)! The hoist also lets you explore anything it touches as a free action. This can be useful if an opponent attacks you and your escort ship derelicts it, or you are near a battle and you sea a derelict, you can explore it just by touching it! If it has anything good on them, then it is yours!
Strategies and game play:
As stated above, use it as a treasure ship. Just go to each island, hoist the treasure on board, and go home. And try and avoid big ships, this thing ain't gonna win many fights.
Combos with other miniatures:
For a standard battle (40 pts) I would use other ships, as the Frontier is so expensive. Most crew combos with the Frontier will be about or over 20 points, and most extra cheap ships will be about in the low 30's. That doesn't leave much customization. In a higher point game, however, these can be pretty good.
A helmsman can speed it up, which means that you only have room for 7 gold pieces, but you can make up for that by moving 3S!
A cargo master in your fleet can give the Frontier 9 cargo, or 8 with a helmsman. That cargo master may seem like overkill (it really is) but it can save you from having to make that one last trip back to that far away island, that is across the sea that can get you killed trying to get it a second time, thus saving you such an expensive ship. It can also do the same for any other American ship in your fleet.
Any fast ship to guard it, or nab the last gold piece or 2 on the island. The Sea Wind is a good escort ship. It has great speed, good cargo space and ok cannons if you keep it close to the Frontier, which you would always do, as it is escorting it.
The (USS) Freedom is another good escort ship. It has good speed, good cannons (great if against a pirate ship), and good cargo space. It is also kinda cheap at only 13 points.
The American Native Canoes are also good escorts, of sorts. They are fast, they have great "cannons", they each have 2 cargo space, and they can transfer treasure from an allied ship directly to them. This lets the Frontier explore and clear an island of gold, then it can transfer it to the canoes and send them back while it goes to other islands. Also the canoes of other countries works to, as you can transfer treasure to all 5 of them just by touching them with the hoist.
The American flotilla, the Minuteman, also serves as a great escort. Just have the Frontier tow it (you won't be able to have a helmsman though), and those extra four extended range cannons will keep most anything under 4 masts away.
Since it is a cargo ship, you don't really want that many crew on it, to free up space, but an oarsman can be a life (and gold) saver!
Hidden Cove can work wonders, letting you pop up at a far away unexplored island, and take all the gold on it, and head back home, exploring any and all islands you come across.
Ways to counteract it:
Any fast gunship (the HMS Interceptor) can catch up and sink her.
A good UT, like Neptune's Trident can let a ship that is far away to damage her.
A UT like blood money, or Curse of Davy Jones, ones that can't be removed and have negative affects are horrible.
Hidden Cove can be deadly, cause you just sail up to an island, and a 5 master (or bigger) pops up!
An island by a whirlpool can be dangerous, as the above can happen.
Same thing if your opponent has the Needle, the Sea Hag, or the Mist Walker and there is an unexplored island near to a fog bank.
An enemy can drop of a Flotilla near an island, and although you can just circle around the island to get treasure, it can be an annoyance.
A sea dragon can definitely catch up and damage her
Also a canceler takes out one of the keywords for that turn.
8 cargo space
BEST hoist/treasure runner in the game
bad cannons(but you'll never need to use them)
Artwork and aesthetics:
Kinda bland, just brown and white. Also it is a reuse of the hull of a bombardier (which is kinda fun to switch the main cannon in place of the hoist, just to freak people out). But it has a hoist, 7/10
The best at what it does, 10/10