Sid Meier's Pirates!


AKA Ass-Bandit
Get yourself a crew, a sea-worthy sloop, a letter of marque (maybe?), and prepare for an adventure in the Caribbean during the 16th century and 17th century. This is a great game released in 1987 for PC, C64 and Apple II, which was also later released for Amiga, NES, and other platforms.

While the name of the game is Pirates, you do not actually have to be a pirate. You actually start off as a privateer for either the English, Dutch, Spanish, or French. At any time however, you can change your profession. You can be a trader, a pirate hunter, a treasure hunter, or, of course, a pirate.

There are several types of ships you can take control of, such as merchantmen, fast galleons, cargo fluyts, sloops and pinnances, each of which have their advantages and disadvantages.

You're probably going to be seing at least some action in this game, as not only English, Spanish, French and Dutch ships sail the seas in this game. There are also a number of pirate fleets who will attack anyone, even more so if you look to be carrying a large amount of gold they can plunder.

As far as battles go, there are three places they can occur: at sea, on land, and in port. Sea battles are fairly self explanatory, you found a ship you want to plunder or destroy, and you win if they surrender, you defeat the captain in a sword fight, or you send the ship to Davy Jones' Locker. Land battles occur if you want to attack a city on foot (which I seem to completely suck at). Winning this battle can only happen if you move your crew to the city, and manage to win the following sword fight. This is of course if the city sends out soldiers, otherwise you just march in and begin the sword fight sequence. Finaly, in port. This time, you have to attack a city from sea. If it's only defended by soldiers, you sail on in, and start a sword fight sequence. If there's at least one fort, you have to sail to shore, as close to the city as you can, while dodging cannon attacks.

Fighting and trading aren't the only things you can do. You will also be able to collect maps that lead to the location of hidden treasure, which you can collect at any time you wish. You can also receive maps that point to the location of your lost family members. Why they're lost, I'm not sure, but you can go and find them if you wish.

As the game progresses, you can be promoted, marry a Governor's daughter, and gain a large amount of wealth and land. All this adds up in the end when you retire to determine what your final job is, which goes as high as a king's advisor, and as low as a begger.

So, now that I've done gabbing on about the game, anyone here who has played this great classic?