Getting started on Virtual Loup-de-Mer

Create an account
Point your browser towards to open the Vlm home page. Click on the “…create one” link underneath the Log in section in the left-hand frame. You’ll be shown the following screen.

Fill out the form and click on Submit.
Note that the name you choose as Playername will be visible not only on most settings pages, but also on rankings pages and other publicly visible pages. The email address you use must be valid, since a validation request will be send to it. When you’ve validated your account, you can log in to the Vlm web site using the email address and password you enter here. At this time you’re automatically assigned an account ID as well as a Jabber ID for the ingame chat.

Create a boat
Click on “Profile” in the left-hand frame and next click on “Create your boat”. For now, ignore all “You may also attach a pre-existing boat” links on this page and the next. Now, enter an alias and a name for a boat in the “Boat’s pseudo” and “Boat’s name” fields, respectively. To be frank, I’m not entirely sure which is shown when and where, but let’s just wing it for now. You may have to repeat this step once or twice if you happen to Confirm boat creation choose a name that’s already taken. Click on Send and on Confirm boat creation request on the next screen.

Enter a race
Now that you have a boat, register in a race. On the front page, each race will now have Subscribe to this race button. So, go ahead, select a race and enter it by pressing the appropriate button. Note that your boat can only be used in one race at a time. If you want to take part in another race, just create another boat.

Cast off
Once you’ve entered a race, the boat control panel page will appear. Enter a constant heading or wind angle and click the appropriate Lock this heading or Lock this Wind Angle button to confirm and cast off. The Orthodromic pilot, Best VMG, and VBVMG buttons will immediately set a course, based on great circle bearing, optimum VMG, or optimum VMC towards the first waypoint. Your boat will either get underway immediately if the race is already underway, or be held at the start line if the start is at a future time.

Boat movement is calculated at pre-determined intervals, specified with the number of minutes indicated with “crank” in the Race Instructions on the front page, based on the boat polar used for the race. Wind data is based on a 0.5° grid and interpolated from the usual 3-hour steps.