Tips and General Strategies?

#1 Posted by essd0g (88 posts) -

So I kind of just bought this game on a whim and now find myself completely bewildered by it. It seems to really just throw you into things without actually explaining the mechanics of the game. Even after reading some guides online, I'm still unclear as to how I should be playing to get the most out of the experience. Currently, I just sail aimlessly sail from place to place recruiting as many people as possible and buying as much supplies as I can afford/hold. Some general strategies/tips that would help guide me through this initial phase of the game would be greatly appreciated.

#2 Posted by Hizang (9359 posts) -

Heres the best tip anybody could give, dont buy Sid Meier's Pirates!

#3 Edited by Sparky_Buzzsaw (7076 posts) -

Whew. OK, here goes.

First, choosing your nationality really does make a difference on the difficulty of the game due to starting cities. If this is your first time, choose a relatively easy age and a culture high in strength to that time period. This will give you many places you can dock, and friendly ships with which to exchange news.

Second, begin by establishing a good relationship with a city's governor. See who you are at war with and who you're at peace with. Obviously, you're going to want to target countries you're at war with, but this will change during the game, so keep an eye on your allegiances and always try to stay in favor with the countries you're peaceful with.

The easiest and most effective way to build cash quickly is to attack the enemy's ships. Take all the cargo you can, sign on any men if they want to join (at least, early on), and keep plundering ships until you build up a sizable amount of cargo. Try to pay attention to prices in each place you visit, keeping in mind that news from friendly ships and ports can help you with finding a good location to unload your cargo at a high profit. If you find some goods that are extraordinarily low priced, pick them up if you have the cash for a higher resale value later. If you come across great ships, don't hesitate to add them to your fleet, but remember this will divvy up your men and make assaults a little harder. I recommend keeping a small-to-medium sized fleet with a sloop and war galleon at the least.

After you've signed on a sizable army, you're going to want to start plundering cities. This is where things get difficult fast. You'll want to start sacking smaller cities without garrisoned forces if at all possible, then build your way up to progressively larger cities. There are a couple of different ways to attack cities, mostly by land or by sea. I usually try to get my troops in by land, as you can often lead the AI on a fairly good chase with decoy units and attack the forts without much difficulty if you have the manpower.

While doing all this, feel free to pursue some other side stuff, such as pursuing a governor's daughter (which leads to an awful mini-game but can be of great help later), trying to find and piece together treasure maps, and chasing down your lost family. There's no real set path to follow, but your ultimate goal in the game is to find all your family members, settle into a great life, and become a rich landowner.


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