For articles of the same name in other Tropico games, see Missions.
The campaign forms a big part of Tropico 2: Pirate Cove. It is similar to a tutorial in helping you develop your skills in the various aspects of of game play. So I highly recommend that you play through at least the first few episodes of the campaign before reading this walkthrough or trying some of the more difficult scenarios to get a feel for how things work. But once you have gone through the campaign or at least tried some of the episodes, you may be looking for ways to do it better, so here are some tips on how the campaign episodes work and how to best achieve a good score. But remember that the idea of the campaign is to learn and have fun, so feel free to ignore these suggestions and experiment with other things to see how they work. You may not get the gold medal, but will learn a lot more doing it.
Episode 1 - Beer for BuccaneersEdit
Start Date: Jan. 1650
End Date: Jan. 1651
Resources: 250 gold, 17 lumber Goals: Build a brewery and a smuggler's dive.
Bronze: Complete within 13 months.
Silver: Complete within 6 months.
Gold: Complete within 4 months.
This introductory episode is so easy that they even have the locations marked for where to put down your buildings. Start by placing a timber camp behind the sawmill and then build a construction tent across the road from the rectangular brown pad near the beach and another one close to the square pad near the chuck tent. Then place either your brewery on the square pad or the smuggler's cove on the rectangular pad near the beach. If you paused the game at the start, which I usually recommended to get your bearings, unpause the game now. While waiting for your lumber to build up, check your sawmill and timber camp to be sure they are fully staffed and if not, set them to medium or high priority. Keep an eye on your lumber stockpile count at the bottom left of the screen. If you want to be ready, select the building you want to build and hold it over the chosen location. It will turn green when you have enough lumber. By around March 1, you should have enough lumber for the other building so place it. If you've done everything right, you should be done before the end of March, well within the four months needed for a gold!
This episode teaches that it is a good idea to set up two or three construction tents at the start of a game to speed up your early construction. Usually there are enough captives to staff these fully until you get more buildings up. Then when you need to staff the new buildings, fire the appropriate male or female captives from your construction tents by shift-clicking on them. This is also a good time to understand the staffing priorities for buildings. If you set a building to medium or high priority, captives will staff that building first and any available pirates will also be attracted to work as overseers to speed up the workers.
Episode 2 - Pirate IndustryEdit
Start Date: Nov. 1650
End Date: May. 1652
Resources: 500 gold, 8 lumber
Goals: Build one each of a sea ration factory, iron mine, blast furnace, blacksmithy and a dock.
Bronze: Complete within 18.7 months.
Silver: Complete within 14.8 months.
Gold: Complete within 13.1 months.
This island is the same one you were on for episode 1 but may look a little different than yours since a new pre-made map is used. Start by building a construction tent near the smuggler's dive and build a dock at the end of the road near the scary skeleton hands. Set your sawmill and timber camp to high priority to get an overseer and ensure maximum staffing. Unpause if you haven't already. Build a second or third construction tent near the stockade as you get more captives from shipwrecks. When you have 10 lumber, build either the sea ration factory across the road from the palace or an iron mine near the ore deposit behind the palace. Remember that you should always place a mine beside the green ore area, never on top of it, since that is the richest deposit. Then build the other of these two when you have 10 more lumber. Finally, build the blast furnace and blacksmithy as you gain enough lumber for them. It is tempting to build the blacksmithy before the blast furnace since it uses less lumber, but it is best to build them in the proper order to get the iron production chain up and running sooner. You should be able to finish around August, 1651, well ahead of the time needed for a gold medal.
On Placing Docks: Docks are a special type of building that must be placed in a certain orientation to be built. You can rotate the dock with the rotation button below the graphic in the construction menu. To be placed, the dock must have its ramp side towards a sandy beach and within 8 cells of a road and the wharf side towards the water. A yellow road will appear where the road will be built to connect it to an existing road. This will not always be where you want it to be, so you may want to build a road closer to the shore first. If the dock does not turn green, meaning a suitable place has been found, try rotating it to another orientation, building a road closer to shore or looking for a different site along the shore.
On the Iron Industry: The manual recommends that you place your iron industry buildings in order towards the dock area, so that as iron is turned to pig iron and then cutlasses or other weapons, it is also moving closer to the docks. I have also found that in the long term you need at least two iron mines per blast furnace to satisfy the insatiable demand for iron since each step consumes two of the preceding commodity, i.e. two iron to produce one pig iron, two pig iron to produce one cutlass or musket.
On Gender Issues: If you check your stockade for available workers as Smitty recommends, you may find that early in the game, you have buildings with no staff but several workers wearing red shirts in the stockade. This is because some jobs are only for women and some only for men. The default job uniform for unemployed captives is the hauler outfit, which is red for women and grey for men. So if you have women available for work and unfilled openings for men, you should fire some men (shift-click on them) from jobs which use both men and women like the construction builder or farmer. Then they will fill the empty slots and the available women will take their place. You may need to set the priority of the unstaffed buildings to medium or high to make sure the fired workers go there.
Episode 3 - Raiders of the CaribbeanEdit
Start Date: Jan. 1652
End Date: Jan. 1656
Resources: 500 gold, 15 lumber
Goals: Build a boatyard and get your treasury up to at least 3000 gold pieces.
Bronze: Complete within 4 years.
Silver: Complete within 1 year and 9 months.
Gold: Complete within 12.5 months.
Just like the briefing stated, your Fun-Loving trait was changed into Industrious, which makes captive workers more efficient in their tasks. This is an excellent trait for maintaining and expanding your pirate haven but it won't last you through the entire campaign.
The first task for this episode is to build the boatyard. This is a little tricky because there is no place for it with the roads and shoreline existing at startup. Like a dock, a boatyard must be built next to water and a sandy beach, but on land rather than on the water like the dock. It also must be next to a road like all other buildings and will not build its own road as the dock will. The best place for a dock on this map is the small patch of beach to the southwest of the stockade, since this will save room by the current dock for another one. It is usually a good idea to build your boatyard somewhere away from the regular docks and pirate entertainment area to keep your shipwright from thinking of escaping and to leave more room for docks close to your entertainment area. To build your boatyard, first extend the road from in front of the stockade right down almost to the small beach area. Then you should be able to build the boatyard so it is touching both the road and shoreline. Orientation does not matter for a boatyard, but I have noticed that the shipwright enters on the side with the large woodshed building, so I usually place that closest to the road. Of course, as Smitty will remind you, you also need to place a construction tent somewhere near the stockade to get construction going.
Now you should check around your buildings to make sure they are staffed properly. This is a good time to use the overlay function. Click the eye icon and select the rightmost button for structures. Click the middle bottom graphic for Staff Size and your buildings will be shown in shades of green and red depending on their staffing. Note that your timber camp likely has few or no workers at this point since it is so far from the stockade. Captives like to fill closer positions first rather than walking too far. To get some workers there, set their staff priority to medium or high and then fire some workers from the blacksmithy or blast furnace since they will have no iron yet to work with anyway.
Now it's time to do some sailing. You should have four pirates, enough to sail a ship, so ignore Smitty's advice to start press ganging captives for now. As soon as your ship has a full load of rations, choose the Raid Settlement ship orders and press the button to Set Sail. While waiting for its return, you may want to consider your next building. I recommend a corn farm near the sea ration factory to keep it supplied. Then try building some pirate entertainment buildings near the dock. Your ship should be returning shortly with some new captives. If you lose a pirate or two from raiding, you will have to press-gang some captives to become pirates. Do this from the edicts menu for Individual Attention and enact the press gang edict. The easiest way to choose captives at this stage is to check your buildings starting at the stockade for idle workers, then buildings that have lowest priority or multiple workers like farms or construction tents. Make sure you hold down the ctrl key when you click on the captive so that you can continue press-ganging additional captives without re-enacting the edict.
When your ship is full of rations and pirates, send it off again for another raiding mission to replenish your captives. You should also have some shipwrecked captives coming in by now, so soon it will be time for your first cruise. Click the telescope icon to view the strategic map and see where your ship is set to sail. Your initial location is the Lesser Antilles and this is fine for cruising as it has a French settlement and an English trade route to provide victims. Before cruising, you should also decide where to set the division of spoils setting for your crew. If you're going for the gold and want to send the maximum amount to your treasury to win early, set this to Miserly or Selfish. If you want to attract more pirate recruits and/or give your pirates lots of money to spend on entertainment, leave it on Big Spender or Generous. When your ship is ready to sail again, this time leave it on cruise orders and set sail. Your ship should by now have a full load of cutlasses but if you have lost any along the way, you will have to wait for your iron industry to get in full gear to replenish them.
As soon as you start cruising, you will be exposed to one of the biggest problems of pirating, losing your ship. Here's where autosave and quicksave are your biggest friends, unless you consider that cheating. Always hit Q to make a quick save of your game before sending out a ship so you can recover from there if it sinks. In this episode, it is almost impossible to achieve gold if your first ship sinks unless you really do well in your cruising. However, if you want to plan ahead and play honestly, you will eventually need to build a ship to replace your first one. Click on your boatyard and select a ship to build if you have enough gold and lumber. You will note that if you still have your first ship, you cannot build another one until you have a second dock. Build a dock next to the first one and block out the hauler positions so that your regular ship will not dock there and to keep it from stealing all the available supplies. Now build the ship when you meet the requirements. You can eventually open up the hauler slots at the second dock if your first dock is well-supplied or if you do lose your first ship.
Cruising is a risky business; even if the ship survives, it may end up receiving damage and/or casualties and may have to return to the island early after a battle with an enemy ship for repairs. You probably need to press-gang some captives to replace casualties as well. On the other hand, some ships will yield new pirate recruits, which will either serve as landlubbers or to replace lost pirates.
Now it's simply a matter of cruising repeatedly for loot and hoping for a good haul. If you get any wealthy captives, you should ransom them right away to get the loot quickly. Later on in other games when you have lots of entertainment facilities, you can let them stay around and build up their ransom value on credit. If you are lucky, you can win the gold by getting your treasury over 3000 by the beginning of 1653. If not, keep on cruising until you do.
On Ransoming: The best way to ransom wealthy captives, especially in a longer game, is to first enact the edict, then click the population counter at the bottom right of the screen to bring up the demographics page of the log book. Click the captives link on the left page to bring up the captives page. If you have only a few wealthy captives and want to ransom them right away, you can just ctrl-click them right in this page. But if you have a lot and want to ransom only the ones with the highest ransom, click the link for Ransom just below the wealthy captives to open the page showing all wealthy captives sorted by ransom. Ctrl-click until you have ransomed all you want.
On Press-Ganging: You can do a similar trick when press-ganging captives to be pirates. First enact the press-gang edict, then open the demographics page, click on the captives link, and this time select the courage link. You can then select the most courageous captives as your recruits and this will make your pirates more likely to keep fighting in a battle and not flee to the hold of the ship, so can have a positive impact on your sea battles. Of course, you can also select other traits like leadership, but these may not have as much of an effect on your battles.
On Ship Repairing: You may notice that sometimes after a cruise, you cannot send your ship out right away because it indicates it is being repaired in the ship status window. If you move the cursor over this message, the hover help will indicate what percentage the ship repair is at. Repairing also takes lumber so a small amount will be deducted from your stockpile and if you have no stockpile, the repairs may be delayed.
Episode 4 - Privateers, not PiratesEdit
Start Date: April 1655
End Date: April 1660
Resources: 3000 gold, 12 lumber
Goals: Build one sloop for Henry Morgan and achieve a pirate happiness level greater than 62.5%.
Bronze: Complete within 5 years.
Silver: Complete within 2 years and 9 months.
Gold: Complete within 2 years.
Start by building a timber camp next to the sawmill. Some good choices to build next are a couple of corn farms across from your palace and stockade, since you only start with one farm. Of course you will also need a construction tent in the area of the stockade. Another good choice is to build a second sawmill and timber camp early on to increase the rate of lumber accumulation.
Your first shipping task will be to kidnap a shipwright. Select the Kidnap Craftsman orders on your ship and pick the shipwright from the list. Set sail as soon as you have enough rations. Next you may want to raid a settlement to get your captive count up. When you get tired of raiding or have enough captives, kidnap a skilled cook and skilled wench to allow more entertainment buildings. Don't bother with Smitty's advice to kidnap a skilled farmer and priest as you will not likely have much benefit from them in this short scenario.
Once you have a shipwright and ten lumber, build your boatyard as soon as possible. Again, I recommend keeping it away from your docks. A good location is to build a road to the northwest just below the initial corn farm far enough to be parallel with the straight beach area. Your boatyard should just fit between this road and the beach. Don't forget to put down another construction tent nearby and encourage workers there by firing them from your first construction tent if workers are in short supply. Your next build should be a dock to allow you to start building ships and a brewery to get the grog flowing.
By now, your pirates may be getting restless, as you can see by the orange bar on the left dropping. Time to build some entertainment! First build a cross road a few cells up from your dock to give you room to spread the buildings out. Then build a dive, animal pit and a few wench houses. Keep up the raiding as long as you need more workers, but give your pirates some shore time once some entertainment buildings are completed. Remember to check your stockade for excess workers and sort out any gender issues. You will need to free up some female workers to staff your entertainment buildings.
The iron industry is optional in this episode as you likely won't need to do any cruising, but if you want to, build a road next to the sea ration factory leading to the ore deposit and build a mine, blast furnace and blacksmithy. A better choice may be to build a second sawmill if you haven't already done so.
About a year into the game you should be ready to start building your sloop so hold off on any building to allow your lumber stockpile to build up to 50 lumber. Once your sloop is underway, you will need to concentrate on increasing your pirate's happiness. Build more entertainment buildings as needed to meet their needs. If you still have money in the treasury, consider passing an edict for free beer, a pirate festival or donating money to a ship or to individual pirates. Once you have enough entertainment structures, you should also build some defence or anarchy structures to make your pirates feel better defended. You should be well on your way to victory now, hopefully a gold before April 1657.
On Pirate Happiness: You can easily check individual pirate's needs by first clicking on any pirate in a ship and selecting the overview button (first button on the left) to see his/her needs. Then click the orange bar on the left of the screen to open the pirate happiness page. Click on each pirate in turn to see their individual needs in the bottom status screen. Also check the graph for any areas that are especially low. Unfortunately, pirate houses are not enabled in this scenario, so hoarding and resting may be low for all pirates.
Episode 5 - Jamaican RumEdit
Start Date: Mar. 1657
End Date: Mar. 1665
Resources: 2000 gold, 10 lumber
Goals: Achieve a minimum hoard size of 1,000 gold pieces over a period of 8 years.
Bronze: Hoard size >=1000.
Silver: Hoard size >=2000.
Gold: Hoard size >=3000.
This episode is the first one that really gives you a feel for the full game play and it lasts a full eight years whether you do well or poorly, so enjoy it! Due to the fixed time duration, time is less critical in this one, but to maximize your hoard, you will need to get your shipping up and running quickly. Your first priority is to place a sea ration factory. Put it at the end of the road from the dock and make sure the doorway faces the road for best efficiency (rotate it one time from default). Put a construction tent nearby. Your second priority is lumber. Extend the road by the sawmill to the northeast a good distance and build a timber camp next to the sawmill. Build another farther up the road where the trees are denser also. Make sure your sawmill and one timber camp are fully staffed and build another construction tent if you have extra workers. Once your lumber starts to come in, build two more corn farms in the field across from the palace. When you have 20 lumber, build a second sawmill by the second timber camp. Make sure your sea ration factory is staffed as soon as it is complete by firing any female construction workers and increasing hiring priority if necessary.
Keep an eye on your ship and as soon as the rations are up to at least 3 or 4, send it off on a raid settlement mission. Raid once or twice more until most of your buildings are staffed. Then kidnap a skilled cook to speed up ration production and a skilled server to unlock your entertainment options. Don't go wild on kidnapping though as you will need all the money you have. You should also do some exploring in the adjoining areas to discover trade routes and settlements. See tips below for exploring.
Now you must decide whether to go with the standard iron industry for weapons or to follow the advice of Mercator and TJ at the forum and use a black market to supply weapons. My preference to get cruising quickly is the black market, but I also recommend building an iron production chain later on to replenish lost weapons. If you do use the black market, build it now, otherwise build an iron mine or two to get the iron rolling in. Be sure that you have at least $336 left in the treasury when your black market is complete so you can buy your first set of cutlasses ($48 x 7).
If you are ready to start cruising, make sure you build the pirate cave first and set it to Stash Maximum to maximize your hoard. You should also be building your boatyard and a second dock by about this time. Your second sawmill should be pumping in lots of lumber by now so you can afford to build all these buildings. If you are really conservative with your money, you may be able to build your first ship before you start cruising, but likely you will have to wait for your first haul. Before you cruise, go to the strategy map and set your ship to cruise in Panama. Also make sure you set your ship to Miserly to keep the maximum money for yourself, do a Quicksave and send her off. Hopefully you will get a good haul the first time out and be able to start building a sloop.
From here on it gets easy. Build some entertainment buildings to reward your pirates for their first successful cruise. Build a graveyard to ensure any pirates killed on cruises can be resurrected. Kidnap a skilled farmer and build some specialty farms. Kidnap a tobacconist and distiller to allow cigars and rum to be produced. Build a third dock and recruit Francis L'Ollonais once you build your third ship. When you can afford it, a fourth dock and ship are good insurance in case you lose a ship.
Now just keep cruising and raking in the plunder until your eight years are up. Build more entertainment buildings and anarchy/defence decor to keep your pirates satisfied and appropriate fear/order decor to keep your captives resigned. You should be able to achieve a hoard of over $10,000 if you have followed all these tips.
On hiring priorities: This episode starts with limited cash, so you must use it wisely. If you set any buildings to medium or high priority to get workers, set them to low again once they are staffed to avoid the payout to overseers. This is a good strategy at any time but can cost some production efficiency since you won't have overseers speeding up your workers, so you need to decide which is more important.
On exploring: Cruising in Panama is fairly lucrative and you can just do it there for the whole game if you want to. But eventually the great powers will start sending their military in to try to catch you. So you should do some exploring to look for other settlements and trade routes nearby. This is a good early task for your first or second ship since your pirates will be fairly content and won't mind repeated trips to sea. To achieve full knowledge of a sector and discover all settlements and trade routes, you will need to send your ship to an unexplored area three times. The first time brings it from "Unexplored" to "Well Surveyed" or "Thoroughly Charted", the second to "Very Familiar Seas" and finally the third to the maximum "Like the Back of Our Hand". I won't spoil it for you by telling you where all the choice locations are. If you want to, you can use one game to only explore, note the best locations and then go back to a saved game. Or you can really cheat and look at the text file. But the best way is to just explore the surrounding areas as you have time and cruise in any areas with new trade routes or settlements.
On maximizing income: There are other ways besides cruising to increase your hoard. Make sure you set some of your entertainment buildings to Middling or Gouge 'Em to increase their income and also increase your wealthy captive's ransom. If you have enough entertainment spots, let some of your wealthy captives stay around until their ransom is over 200, otherwise ransom them right away to leave room for your pirates. You may also want to try an edict like Rig Gambling Against to increase your income, but be careful you don't do it at the expense of too much pirate happiness.
Episode 6 - Diplomacy and WarEdit
Start Date: April 1663
End Date: April 1669
Resources: Hoard size from episode 5 + $900, 10 lumber, hoard $100
Goals: Achieve harmonious relations with France or Spain, build hoard size to at least 1500 gold.
Bronze: Complete within 6 years.
Silver: Complete within 4 years, 9.5 months.
Gold: Complete within 3 years, 10 months.
This episode is your first introduction to diplomacy with the Great Powers of the game: England, France and Spain. Most of the information on the status of the great powers is found at the bottom left in the strategy map (click on the silver telescope). You can find out here what your relationship status is with each power, how much plunder and how many captives you have taken from each power, who has discovered the location of your secret island and who is at war with whom. This will all be important information for this episode.
You have two choices for winning this episode: go for the gold to achieve your goals as quickly as possible, or use all available time to maximize your hoard and thus your treasury for the next episode. The only difference is when you start cultivating relationships with the great powers. I'll assume you want to go for the gold and deal with any differences later. In that case, time is of the essence, so you will have to move quickly at the start. Pause the game as soon as it starts and have a look around your island. Click on your pirate cave and set it to Stash Maximum so you don't forget later. Build a construction tent beside or near the chuck tent and a sea ration factory beside that. You will notice that trees are fairly scarce in this episode but that should not be a problem since it is fairly short. Build a timber camp beside the sawmill and another one up the road from the corn farm where trees are denser. Now you can unpause to start the game.
You will get a notice regarding diplomacy right away. To choose who you want to at peace with, go to the strategy map and see which power has a settlement near your island. If it is Spain, you will want to choose France, if France, then choose Spain. Otherwise you will not be able to raid for captives at that settlement. Click the edicts icon and click the farthest right icon for International Diplomacy. Choose the Announce Peace Policy edict for the nation you have chosen and pass the edict. Then click the Cruise Orders edict button (the middle one) and choose the Prohibit Victims edict for the nation you are at peace with. This will start you towards the required harmonious relations, which takes at least two years. If you are trying to maximize your hoard and not going for the gold, you can put this off until later, but do it at least 3 years before the end or you may not have time to win. Also, it would be a good idea to prohibit victims from the start from the nation you will be at peace with or they may be quite angry with you after a few years of cruising.
You will also get a notice soon after this about an English spy you left behind in Jamaica who offers to reveal information about a number of English trade routes for 1500 gold. This is certainly a tempting offer and as long as you have enough cash in your treasury, you should do it. These trade routes cannot be discovered by exploring since only your spy has the information. To enact the edict, go to the Cruise Orders edict menu and click on the Spy on Settlement edict to enact it. You will get an immediate notice for three English trade route locations that will increase your cruising plunder.
Now back to your island. Build two more corn farms on the road up from the first corn farm as soon as you have enough lumber. Then wait until you have 20 lumber and build a second sawmill beside the second timber camp. In the meantime, keep an eye on your ship and as soon as it has at least 3-4 rations, send it out on a raiding mission. Also kidnap a shipwright early on to allow you to build a boatyard. Keep on raiding as captives are fairly scarce in this episode. When you have 10 lumber, build a boatyard and then a dock. You will not need the bigger ships for this episode unless you are going for the maximum hoard strategy. As soon as your dock is finished and you have 20 lumber, start building a snow just for raiding and kidnapping. If you have lots of cash in your treasury, don't bother with the iron industry at all, just build a black market next.
You should be ready to start cruising about a year into the scenario. Build a graveyard and stock up your schooner with cutlasses from your black market. Cruise first in the Virgin Islands and then the Lower Antilles or even the other areas with trade routes. Now build a brewery and some other entertainment buildings to satisfy your edgy pirates. Keep raiding with your snow to get enough captives to staff them and fire females from other jobs as needed to get servers.
When you have a few entertainment buildings completed, build a third dock and a schooner and recruit another captain and start cruising with that ship. I was surprised to find that a sloop cannot travel as far as the two distant English trade routes, so a schooner is the better choice here. A fourth dock and captain are the next order of business. Keep cruising and make sure you ransom wealthy captives as they come in and you should have 1500 gold in your hoard by the start of the third year. Now you just have to work on getting your relationship with your peaceful great power up to harmonious. Try enacting edicts to free captives or betray pirates of that nation. Even if you have zero captives of that nation, passing the Free Captives edict will improve relations. The Betray Pirates edict may work the same way. After this it is just a matter of time until your relations become harmonious and you will achieve victory!
Sea ration production: Here's a little trick to get your sea ration production going sooner. As soon as the game starts, pause the game and fire the hauler from the one existing chuck tent and shift-click to block out the position. He/she will still deliver the first load but will leave some corn at your corn farm for the sea ration factory once it is built. This can shave weeks or even months off the time it takes to start sailing. Just remember to open it up again once the sea rations factory starts production.
Great Power Relationships: For your reference, the sequence of relationships with the great powers in order from lowest to highest is as follows: Hostile, Cool, Neutral, Cordial and Harmonious.
Episode 7 - A Turncoat PirateEdit
Start Date: April 1667
End Date: April 1677
Resources: Hoard size from episode 6 + $1080, hoard $120, 10 lumber, 20 sea rations
Goals: Own two pirate schools and four pirate vessels by the time Captain Morgan arrives.
Bronze: Complete within 10 years.
Silver: Complete within 5 years, 9 months.
Gold: Complete within 4 years, 8 months.
This episode introduces the concept of pirate schools and the interrogation edict. Knowing the end date hinges on building an interrogation chamber and using the Interrogate edict to find out when Henry Morgan is scheduled to return. You can go ahead and do it if you want but as you can see above, he is scheduled to arrive in April, 1677, so you have exactly 10 years total to win this episode. That will cost you a few gold pieces. Again, you have a choice of what type of win you want to achieve, a maximum hoard or a gold medal. This time you have lots of time for the gold and can control when the game ends so you should be able to get both!
You start off with a fully equipped island this time, including 3 docks, 1 brigantine, 1 sloop, black market, smuggler's dive, sea ration factory, gallows, observatory and 3 watch towers, as well as the usual starting buildings! So this is a quick one to get going. Start by building a timber camp next to the sawmill and a second one by the bunkhouses. Fire some male workers to become lumberjacks. Set your pirate cave to stash maximum. Kidnap a shipwright when the sloop has enough rations, then raid for captives. Buy cutlasses and rations to stock up your brigantine, set the crew distribution to Miserly, do a quicksave and set sail for your first cruise. Note that Southern Hispaniola is quite lucrative to cruise in, but you should also explore some of the other nearby regions for trade routes and settlements. In the meantime, build a second sawmill and then a shipyard once you have 30 lumber built up. Build a dock and a graveyard for any pirate casualties. Build 2 or 3 more corn farms for sea rations and then some entertainment buildings and a brewery. Build an interrogation chamber at some point if you want to add fear or want to see the message about Captain Morgan for yourself. Note that you do NOT need a pirate interrogator for the Interrogate edict to be enabled but you do need to have the tutorial (Smitty) turned on to see the interrogation message.
Once your fourth dock is complete, put off building any new structures long enough to accumulate enough lumber for another brigantine if you can afford it, otherwise build a smaller ship. Recruit a captain and start cruising with that ship also. Be careful about sending your ships to a region with more than 3 cannon danger level or more than moderate great power presence. Sometimes for large rewards, you need to take larger risks, but if you explore other areas, you should find some less dangerous ones that prove profitable too. Just be sure to quicksave and be ready to build more ships if you do take a chance.
By this stage of the game, you should be ready to build your first pirate school. These cost 40 lumber and 600 gold so you do need some steady plunder coming in, but that should be no problem by this point. Build a swordsmanship school first and send any pirates that have low swordsmanship for an education. See below for tips on checking pirate skills. Hold off on your second school until August or September 1671 and then build it so it will be complete before the end of November 1671, the deadline for gold. If you have done everything right, you should have a hoard of around 10,000 gold or more and a gold medal to boot!
Monitoring a cruise: Sometimes it is interesting to monitor a cruise to see how it is progressing. To do this, go to the strategy map and click on the ship you want to monitor. You can then see the ship display at the bottom and watch the rations go down and the skill levels of the crew go up and hopefully see cannons added as other ships are taken. You can't do anything here to affect the outcome, but the sea rations are a good indicator of how much longer the ship will be at sea, while the cannon count can tell how successful the cruise was.
Checking pirate skills: Once you have a pirate school, you will want to check the skills of your pirates to choose who to send to school. Usually you will start your education on ships with a lower average skill in the type of skill they are using, such as swordsmanship if the ship is using Board 'Em orders. These average skills can be found in the top left of the ship information panel under the ship name. But you will also want to check individual pirate skills or you will be wasting money on educating pirates that are already skilled. It can be quite tedious to check each pirate on a ship by going back and forth from the ship information panel to the pirate information panel. I have found that one good way to do this is to first click on any pirate on a ship and click the skills tab (fourth from left). Then open the log book and click on Cruise Information and select the ship you want to look at. Now click each pirate in turn and note the skill level in whatever education you want to use on him/her. Note the sequence of the pirate in the crew so you can later come back and educate them. You can also note skills that are low for planning which school to build next. Look at other ships while you are there to evaluate them also. Next, go to the edicts menu and the Individual Attention section. Click on Educate Pirate (top right) and enact the edict. Now click on the ship you looked at before and choose the noted pirates with skill needs.
Another method if you can afford it is to first enact the education edict and then go to the pirate demographics page and click on the skill you want such as gunnery. Now control-click on the lowest rated pirates for that skill. Usually I just do the pirates assigned to a crew and not the landlubbers, but if you have lots of money, you can do them all since landlubbers eventually head out to sea as you lose pirates or build more ships.
Episode 8 - Frigates and ShipbuildingEdit
Start Date: May 1674
End Date: End of Dec. 1682
Resources: Hoard size from episode 7 + $1080, hoard $120, 10 lumber
Goals: Own at least two frigates and accumulate a hoard of at least 2000 gold.
Bronze: Complete by end of Dec. 1682.
Silver: Complete within 6 years, 10 months.
Gold: Complete within 5 years, 5.7 months.
Your first priority in this episode is to get your shipbuilding industry going. Do the usual startup procedures, i.e. build a timber camp by the sawmill, another by the stockade, build two construction tents and build two more corn farms towards your pirate cave. Unpause and kidnap a shipwright as soon as your sloop has enough rations, then raid for more captives. Sea rations will be slow in coming at first so may slow down your raiding and getting your brigantine going. Build a second sawmill when you have 20 lumber and then a black market. Supply your brigantine when the black market is complete and you should be cruising by early 1675. Before cruising, set your pirate cave to Stash Maximum, but this time set your ship's plunder shares to Generous to attract more recruits to man your frigates. Or make sure you have lots of captives and pressgang them. When you have enough pirates, set it down to Miserly to keep your hoard up.
Another consideration for early in the game is whether or not to make peace with one of the great powers or to be independent. The advantage of making peace is that if you achieve harmonious relations and make them your patron, France cannot attack. On the other hand, you will not be able to attack their ships, so will lose out on some plunder. I recommend staying independent for reasons that will become obvious when you reach the next episode.
When you have 30 lumber, build your shipyard. Make sure you do not build the smaller boatyard or you will not be able to build frigates. Also build a third dock to be ready for your ship and possibly a third sawmill to keep lumber output up. You will need 125 lumber per frigate, so it will take some time to accumulate. Build a graveyard, brewery and a few cheap entertainment buildings before you seriously start stockpiling lumber and then hold off building until you have enough lumber for a frigate. Also consider kidnapping a second or even third shipwright to speed up frigate production, but this is not really necessary since you don't want to win too early and reduce your hoard size. Recruit a captain when your frigate is built and equip it with blades from the black market. Build a fourth dock to be ready for your second frigate.
In the meantime, cruise for plunder and remember to move your cruising location around to avoid excess danger. If you lose a ship and don't have a saved game to reload, you will have to replace it and possibly cut into your frigate production. You should have no problem reaching a hoard size of 2000. Make sure you start your second frigate in time to be completed by mid-October, 1679 to win gold. A frigate can take 9-10 months to build with only one shipwright. My win came in Jan. 1978.
On Skilled Workers: Skilled workers can significantly speed up production of precious commodities like lumber, sea rations, iron ore and pig iron. If you need a lot like you do in this episode, make sure you kidnap some early on. Also, make sure your skilled workers go where you want by setting the hiring priority at the desired building higher than that of other buildings for that type of worker and the new skilled worker will go there first. One exception I think is that if there are empty buildings, they will still go there first, but you can always fire them or block out those slots to chase them where you want.
Episode 9 - A Smuggler's CoveEdit
Start Date: Jan. 1681
End Date: end Dec. 1689
Resources: Hoard size from episode 8 + $720, hoard $80, 10 lumber, 80 sea rations
Goals: Build a cigar factory, rum distillery, bakery, brewery and smuggler's cove. Hoard of at least $5000
Bronze: Complete within 9 years.
Silver: Complete within 6 years, 3.5 months.
Gold: Complete within 4 years, 11 months (Dec. 1, 1685).
This episode introduces the smuggler's cove for the first time. A smuggler's cove is the reverse of the black market, where you can sell your excess goods for profit. A smuggler's cove can sell rum, beer, cigars, pastries as well as cutlasses, muskets and cannons. If you're going to build a smuggler's cove, you may as well make a profit on it, so make sure you build this once you have at least one of the industries up and running. Like a shipyard, it must be built on a road, but close to the water. A good location for this episode is near the sea ration factory. You will need to kidnap a skilled trader to unlock the building before it can be built. It is found in the Infrastructure section of buildings.
This episode also has a little surprise at the beginning. Make sure you have the tutorial messages on and you will get a notice within the first few days that France is providing you a grant of $5000 if you choose to accept it. Who wouldn't?! You start with France as your patron, so you already have harmonious relations in order to pass this edict. Make sure you first set your pirate cave to Stash Maximum and then go to the edicts menu and the International Diplomacy tab. Click on the treasure chest for the Emergency Funding edict and issue for an easy 5k gold!
Start off with a timber camp by the sawmill and a construction tent or two. Build a road beside the stockade and place two more corn farms. Build a black market as soon as you can. You will also need $960 for your first load of cutlasses for your galleon. My first cruise was in September 1681 using this strategy. France will be sending you captives but they are never enough, so do some raiding with your brigantine. Also kidnap a skilled farmer early on so you can take advantage of the industries you are required to build. Now build a second sawmill and timber camp near the palace and then a tobacco farm and sugarcane farm where they are most fertile. The best spot I found for sugarcane was right next to the sea ration factory, which is handy for your entertainment buildings and smuggler's cove. Kidnap a tobacconist and distiller when you can to unlock these industries, then build them close to your farms. Usually one specialty farm can supply one factory, at least until you get two specialty workers in the factory. Now is a good time to kidnap a skilled trader and build a smuggler's cove if you have not done so already. And DO NOT FORGET to open it to a great power once it is completed. To do this, click on the smuggler's cove building and then click on the nation you want to trade with. You will receive a confirmation notice telling you that that nation will now know the location of your secret island, so it's a good idea to choose a great power you are friendly with or which is already your patron.
As always, if you are going for both a gold and a maximum hoard, you will have to work hard. You have two choices at your disposal: either build all required buildings as soon as possible and wait for your hoard to reach $5000, or build all but one and hold off building it until just before the gold deadline. I built all the buildings before realizing this and won in Feb. 1684, almost two years before the deadline for gold of Dec. 1, 1685. I recommend choosing to wait and build your bakery or one of the other factories last just before that date. Congratulations!
Sea Rations: You will need lots of sea rations to keep your galleon supplied, so make sure you get a skilled cook or two working there. Also, don't waste a lot of rations raiding with the galleon, save them for cruising when you're ready.
Weapons Industry: This may be one episode where it is worthwhile to build up your weapons industry so you can sell the excess at the smuggler's cove.
Anarchy and Order: One challenge you face with this episode is the long distance between docks with the sea ration factory radiating order in between. You will likely need to build two separate entertainment districts around each dock, with the larger buildings towards the middle so they are accessible to both docks. Or you could build another dock and demolish one of the starting docks. I did not have a big problem with captives escaping or pirates disliking the order, but you can counteract these with some fear and defense structures nearby. Remember that pirates are fearless and captives could care less about defense, so these are the best choices around your entertainment districts where anarchy and order clash with each other.
Episode 10 - TortugaEdit
Start Date: Jan. 1686
End Date: End of Dec. 1699
Resources: Treasury: Hoard size from episode 9 + 720, hoard 80, 20 lumber, 50 sea rations, 1 brigantine
Goals: Achieve a personal hoard of 10,000 gold and a treasury of 20,000 gold. Use any available means except to plunder French ships.
Bronze: Complete within 14 years (end Dec. 1699).
Silver: Complete within 12 years (end Dec. 1697).
Gold: Complete within 10 years (end Dec. 1695).
As befits the pirate island of Tortuga, your island starts well-equipped for pirates, with 2 smuggler's dives, 2 wench houses, an animal pit and gambling den. There is also an iron mine next to a gallows! You will need lots of lumber in this episode to build and replace ships for cruising, so your first priority is to get the lumber industry rolling. Build a construction tent to the right of the sawmill and a timber camp to the left. Extend the road from the dock up the hill and build a second sawmill next to the iron mine and a timber camp across the road. Now unpause the game.
As in episode 9, you will also get a message offering 5000 gold from the French in initial funding. Use it! First make sure you set your pirate cave to stash maximum and then enact the Emergency Funding edict. Alternatively, if your treasury is small, you may want to keep the pirate cave on minimum to add more to the treasury at the start. Now use your ship to raid for captives and kidnap a shipwright as soon as possible. Raid some more and kidnap a skilled cook for your sea ration factory. Make sure you set the sea ration hiring priority to medium or high so the cook will go there as soon as she lands. When your lumber starts coming in, build two more corn farms up the road from the existing farms. Now wait for your lumber to build up to 30 and build a shipyard to the left of the sawmill by the beach.
Now build a black market, a blast furnace and a brewery. It is a good idea for this longer scenario to build up your iron industry as a backup to the black market for weapons and also to allow you to sell weapons at a smuggler's cove for more cash. When the shipyard is complete, build a snow for raiding, kidnapping and exploring. A snow is great for this because its small crew are able to board faster and go out more often. Recruit a captain for your snow when it is ready. When the black market is completed, make sure you have two workers there to keep prices down and then equip your brigantine with cutlasses. Set your ship's plunder shares to Selfish, do a Quicksave and send her out for a cruise. My first cruise on my second time through the campaign was on May 11, 1687.
Next build a dock for a third ship, a blacksmithy and a graveyard. Kidnap a skilled farmer. Build a fourth dock, a second iron mine and a second chuck tent. Build a road past the palace and build a tobacco farm or two in the dark green areas for tobacco. Extend the road past your second sawmill and build a banana and papaya farm. You can also build a sugarcane farm or two on the southeast side of the island. Make sure you kidnap a tobacconist and distiller and build a cigar factory, distillery and bakery to use all these commodities
By this time, your ship will likely have sunk several times and you've done a few reloads to recover your game. What's happening?!? A lone ship on the waters is a dangerous proposition in any territory and this one seems to have more troubles than most. It's time to learn how to combine your forces and send ships out together for more protection. See the tips section below for how to do this.
Once you get some successful cruises under your belt, remember to move your cruise locations around so they do not get too dangerous. Also, use your snow to do some exploring at least once or twice in a new region to get the knowledge of an area up. This increases the chance that a cruise will make a discovery. You may want to build some gunnery or swordsmanship or other pirate schools to increase their skills in any low areas.
Since this is a longer episode than most up to now, you will have to concentrate on some mid-game tactics to ensure survival. Keep an eye on pirate happiness and allow for a longer shore leave as this drops. Make sure you have enough entertainment buildings for them all and keep them staffed. Watch your lumber production and if timber camps are getting too far from the trees, fire the workers (but don't destroy the camps until their stock is depleted to zero) and build new camps near the forest areas. It may even be necessary to build new sawmills nearer to the timber camps if your lumber production slows to a crawl. Make sure you have enough chuck tents to keep your captives from starving as their numbers increase. Keep building fear and order structures on the outskirts or high traffic areas to keep them from escaping.
As you near the end, watch your pirate cave hoard compared to the treasury. Once you are over the 10,000 gold needed for the hoard, you may need to set stashing to a lower setting to stash less and build up the treasury instead. But do not do this too soon, as you have a full ten years to achieve gold. If it is too early and your treasury is getting close to 20,000, start spending more gold on pirate education, raising skeletons and passing pirate happiness edicts. If your treasury needs a boost near the end, make sure you ransom off all your wealthy captives. My gold on this campaign came in May 1694 with a hoard of 19,512 and a total score of 33,985.
Using fleets of ships: Sending ships out together is a great way to increase the success of cruises and prevent having your ships sunk right away. You can start with the snow and brigantine together if you want, but a better match is to combine a fast schooner to pursue the enemy ships with a brigantine to add firepower. Or if you can afford it, build a frigate to bring on the big guns and combine it with the brigantine for moderate speed. But first you have to know how to send them out together. There is no automatic function for this (yet), but it is not that hard to do. Watch your ships to see when the captain is fairly satisfied or has returned to the ship. Sound the boarding call on the ship with the most pirates first, especially if most are ashore. Then when a few are on board (as indicated by their coloured clothing), sound the boarding call for the smaller ship. If the ships are the same size, you can judge by how many are on board each for when to call the pirates up for duty. When the first ship leaves the dock, check the other one and if most pirates are there, click the green arrow to send it out immediately. If just a few stragglers are almost there, you can afford to wait a few days, but not too long. If the captain is still ashore, you are out of luck, which is why it is important to wait until the captains are on board or well-satisfied. The sight of 2 or 3 ships sailing off side by side brings joy to the heart of any bloodthirsty pirate.
Episode 11 - The Treasure FleetEdit
Start Date: Jan. 1692
End Date: end Dec. 1700
Resources: Treasury=hoard size from episode 10 + 720, hoard 80, 20 lumber, 70 sea rations, 1 schooner, 1 frigate
Goals: Achieve a hoard of 10,000 gold by end of 1700.
Bronze: Complete within 9 years.
Silver: Complete within 6 years, 10 months (Nov. 1, 1698).
Gold: Complete within 5 years, 5 months (Jun. 15, 1697).
As for episode 10, this episode is made for big-time cruising, but with an even tougher target in the Spanish treasure fleet. Note that there is nothing special about the Spanish fleet other than the military danger, it is just normal cruising to maximize your hoard size as before. You don't even have to cruise in a specific area, just wherever you can get the most plunder.
You can also get emergency funding from your patron nation, France, in this episode, though you will hardly need it based on your treasury of at least 10,000. But if you like, pass the edict at the start, or wait until later if your cash is low and you need a boost. Remember to set your pirate cave to stash maximum first to get the most benefit of the edict to your hoard. France will also send you captive workers, but only if you have the patch 1.2 installed, which fixed the script for a bug. For the most part, these captives will keep your economy going, but you will still need to do a few raids. For one thing, as the briefing stated, you lost your vaunted industrious quality and instead, you have Battle Craftiness, which makes your ships more likely to catch fleeing vessels or escape pursuers during a cruise.
You have two choices of what to do with your initial 20 lumber; either build a second sawmill as I usually recommend or build a black market to equip your ship and get cruising faster. I tried it both ways and due to the short time span for the gold medal, recommend starting with the black market. Start with a couple of construction tents, a timber camp or two and a black market. As soon as the market is ready, equip your frigate and start cruising. Be sure to quick save in case you lose it. Use the schooner to kidnap a skilled farmer, shipwright, skilled cook, skilled server and possibly a skilled lumberjack or two. As your lumber builds up, build a second sawmill and more timber camps if needed. Then build a couple of sugarcane and tobacco farms to get your farm production going. Build 2 or 3 more corn farms to keep your rations factory supplied. Build a shipyard as soon as possible after this and then a graveyard and maybe a third sawmill to pour on the lumber production. You will want a few ships cruising to get the most plunder or replace your losses.
Speaking of cruising, I recommend moving your cruising region around as in previous episodes, to avoid the dangers of a high risk region when your opponent's military ships are called in. Usually I switch when the risk factor goes over 3 cannons or the enemy presence is shown as Fairly Heavy or higher. For the record, the levels are: None - Scant - Very Light - Fairly Light - Moderate - Fairly Heavy - Very Heavy - Plentiful – Teeming
Also, be sure to send fleets of ships out together as detailed in episode 10 to increase your chances for plunder and survival.
Build another chuck tent or two to keep your captives fed, then another dock and a brewery. Build some basic entertainment buildings near the dock such as an animal pit, wench house and smuggler's dive or tavern. Kidnap a distiller and tobacconist and build a distillery, cigar factory, banana and papaya farms and a bakery to supply your entertainment buildings. There is no time for a weapons industry or smuggler's cove in this episode, so just concentrate on entertainment to keep your pirates' satisfaction up. Build as many entertainment buildings as you can and pass some happiness edicts since you have lots of money. I got gold as early as April 1696 and score of 18,975 with this strategy.
Coffeebean's strategy: This tip is courtesy of Coffeebean at the Blue Parrot Inn forum and just shows that there are many ways to win:
Here's my tips for episode 11 - The Treasure Fleet - I didn't build a boatyard or a shipyard. I just used the Frigate for cruising and only cruised the starting area. I did save before each cruise though and reloaded if I lost the ship. I did give my fighting pirates as many parrots as I could as I captured a skilled parrot trainer. You have masses of spending money on this one so I bought loads of skilled workers, allowed 8 wealthy captives to stay from early on to build up their ransoms and built all the entertainment buildings and a Pirate Cove. With skilled miners and blacksmiths you can sell excess cutlasses and muskets. I also raised loads of skellies and set free excess unskilled captives - didn't want them eating my corn. Skull cave was on max and frigate was on miserly, I donated money to anyone who was getting low so they could spend it in my entertainment buildings. I got gold with very happy pirates 67%.
Maximizing your hoard: One way to maximize your hoard and boost it over the 10,000 mark as much as possible is to keep a lot of wealthy captives around as 'Bean did and wait until the time is nearly up or you are close to the goal and then ransom them all at once to give you a win. This can be a bit tricky if you have a ship come in with a lot of plunder that puts you over 10,000 before you do the ransom, so be careful.
Getting more pirates: If you use my strategy and build more ships, you may have a hard time getting more recruits even if you set your plunder share higher than miserly or selfish. If you have a graveyard, you can pressgang your haulers to be pirates and replace them with skeleton haulers, and you will get more work out of them to boot.
Episode 12 - The Jolly RogerEdit
Start Date: Jan. 1699
End Date: End of Dec. 1707
Resources: Treasury: Hoard size from episode 11 + 720, hoard 80, 20 lumber, 70 sea rations, 1 frigate
Goals: Recruit at least 50 pirates for the island and achieve a pirate happiness rating of just under 2/3 (over 62.5% to be exact). Also achieve a personal hoard of at least 5,000 gold.
Bronze: Complete within 9 years (end Dec. 1707).
Silver: Complete within 6 years, 6.9 months (July 25, 1705).
Gold: Complete within 5 years, 5.5 months (July 14, 1704).
This episode starts off with another offer for a spy to help you out (if you have the tutorial turned on). Pass the Spy on Settlement edict and three areas will be revealed for cruising with trade routes and/or settlements. These are all you really need to cruise in, besides your home region.
One challenging feature of this episode is the widely separated docks with the lagoon between. This will make building an entertainment district more difficult since you will either need to build two separate areas or the pirates will have a long way to walk. Another option is to destroy the northern most dock and build another on the southeast shore and keep your district on the south side.
Since you only have one ship to start off, a priority for this episode is to kidnap a shipwright and build a shipyard and more ships. First build a couple of construction tents, a couple of timber camps and a second sawmill beside the first sawmill. Then build a shipyard at the end of the road by the sawmill. Build a black market, blast furnace, corn farm or two, blacksmithy and a graveyard. Build a schooner to help with raiding and kidnapping tasks and also be able to cruise. Build another dock to allow more ships and start your entertainment district with a smuggler's dive, animal pit, wench house and tavern.
Meanwhile, you will need to do lots of raiding for captives since you have no patrons in this episode. In my first year, Charlotte's Favorite performed 8 missions, 4 to kidnap and 4 to raid. Once you have a second ship, you can begin cruising with your frigate. Make sure to set your pirate cove to stash maximum and your ship's plunder shares to Selfish or higher to enrich your pirates but still build up your hoard. Build another brigantine or two to increase your cruising ability.
Once you have a skilled farmer, either by kidnapping or cruising, build a banana and papaya farm and a couple of tobacco and sugarcane farms. Build more entertainment buildings and a brewery, cigar factory and distillery to supply them. Also zone off a district to the northwest and build some pirate housing plots to increase your pirate's happiness.
Keep up your cruising until your hoard reaches 5,000 and then concentrate on increasing pirate happiness. Make sure you have enough of all the entertainment buildings and a good supply of the extra luxury items. Pass free beer, free rum and pirate festival edicts to give them a boost. If time is running out, try press-ganging some captives to be pirates, since these pirates start out with high happiness ratings and will increase your overall happiness rating. Before you know it, your happiness should be high enough to win and you will be awarded the gold!
Pirate Happiness: Since one of the goals for this episode is pirate happiness, this is a good time to look at some of the ways to improve the satisfaction level of your pirates. The quickest way to check pirate satisfaction is of course the pirate satisfaction page of the logbook. The eight factors that affect satisfaction are shown on a graph where you can check for any that are especially low. Click the button before a need to turn its graph off or on. The chart also shows average satisfaction at the top and highest and lowest at the bottom. Concentrate on the lowest one first by building appropriate entertainment buildings and supplies or providing defense and anarchy structures. For example, I noticed that Drinking satisfaction was very low and realized I had forgotten to build a brewery. Some needs are more difficult to meet such as stashing, which requires a lot of pirate housing plots, which are difficult to find room for.
Another way to find what your pirates need is to check the opposite page to the satisfaction chart for Overall Happiness. Click on a dissatisfied pirate to open his or her character overview and see what needs are low. You should especially do this if you get the message that one or more of your pirates have become disgruntled or enraged. Remember that building emanation can have a large effect, especially later in the game, so watch your defense and anarchy auras and keep away order as much as possible.
Building Service Quality: Another factor that plays a big part in pirate satisfaction is the service quality of your entertainment buildings. Service quality is affected by several things: class of building (low or high), type of activity, rank setting, pirate rank, worker skill level and bonus commodities like cigars and pastries. There is a complicated algorithm that figures out how all these affect a pirate being served, but you can see the minimum and maximum service quality by looking at the island log for each satisfaction need and the buildings that cater to it. The minimum level is based on lowest skill level of workers and no bonus commodities. The highest is based on highest skill level and all possible commodities. There is also an adjustment factor that takes into account the rank of the pirate compared to the rank level set for the building. For each level above or below the building setting range, 10% is deducted from service quality. This is why it is important to watch the average rank of your pirates and change settings or build more buildings as needed to provide the best match.
Episode 13 - A New WarEdit
Start Date: Jan. 1704
End Date: end Dec. 1716
Resources: Treasury=hoard size from episode 12 + 450, hoard 50, 20 lumber, 70 sea rations, 1 frigate
Goals: Achieve harmonious relations with at least one great power, build up your fleet to at least four frigates or galleons and build a hoard of 5,000 gold by end of 1716.
Bronze: Complete within 13 years (end Dec. 1716).
Silver: Complete within 9 years, 7 months (Aug. 1, 1713).
Gold: Complete within 7 years, 10.6 months (Nov. 15, 1711).
Make sure you use the patched version from patch 1.2 for this episode, which gives the proper length of time, 13 years. Obviously, this one is not for those pirate kings plagued with triscadecaphobia! This episode starts off with an offer from English spy Daniel Smythe-Weathersby, to feed you information on France and Spain trade routes and settlements. Of course, this information is invaluable, so pass the Spy on Settlement edict as soon as possible. However, the information is not given right away, but in bits and pieces over a period of time. Note that you also need to have the tutorial turned on to see the messages, until someone fixes the scripts to use normal messages.
One of the goals is to achieve harmonious relations with one power, so you will want to start cultivating this relationship early on. Check your starting location to see which nation has a settlement there. You will most likely want to choose another power than that one to make peace with so you can raid the settlement. Also, the briefing gives a clue about England having the largest merchant fleet, so you will not want to make peace with England. You may also want to wait until the first one or two spy reports come in to see which routes are available and where. Once you have chosen a power, pass the make peace and prohibit victims edicts to prevent attacking them.
Another goal is to build up your fleet to at least four frigates or galleons. These ships require a lot of lumber, so your first building should be a second sawmill with your starting amount of 20 lumber. Extend the road past the iron deposit and build it there along with a timber camp or two as well as a camp near the sea rations factory. Fire other workers as needed to get these facilities fully staffed early. Build 2 or 3 more corn farms to supply your rations factory and a second chuck tent near your sawmills. By now you should have kidnapped a shipwright so you can build a shipyard to the northwest of your palace or else the southwest side of the big island. Build a third sawmill soon after to get the lumber rolling in.
Don't forget your third goal, to build your hoard to 5,000 gold. Set your hoard to stash maximum or a lot and set your entertainment buildings to middling rates to get some gold coming in now. However, you may want to put this off until you have at least one more ship and you can start cruising without running short of cash to stock your ship.
You have no patron nation in this episode and captives are hard to come by, so your lone ship will be busy for the first year just raiding and kidnapping. Once your shipyard is nearly ready, build another dock and build a schooner or snow just for raiding. Recruit a captain for this ship (see tips below) and build a black market to supply the frigate for cruising. You will be running short of money by this point, so be sure to manage it carefully so you have enough to start cruising.
This episode has the difficulty settings cranked up for captive satisfaction, so you will notice that it is much more difficult to keep them resigned and prevent escapes. My first escape took place in July 1705. Be sure to build some fear and order structures or decor, especially in outlying areas like the corn farms on the smaller island and your sawmills and timber camps. Also, watch out for captive rebellions and be sure to keep guards in your palace at all times, even if you have to pressgang captives, to keep from losing your head.
At the same time, start building more entertainment buildings for your pirates. Don't go too overboard yet though (har, har) since you need to save up 125 lumber for your second frigate. You will likely need to cruise for enough cash to build a frigate (1000 gold) and of course to keep your hoard building. A second sea ration factory on the smaller island is also a good idea to keep your ships supplied.
Your spy will flee near the end of the second year, but you still have the option of interrogating him for more information on England if you build an interrogation chamber. This costs an extra 500 gold, but is worth it if you want to attack the English merchant routes. You will also find that the nation you are not at peace with will be getting very unhappy with you. If you have had captives escape, there is a good chance that they will discover your island location and start planning an invasion. I had an invasion from France in my first game and from Spain in my second. It is really quite a fun thing to watch, but unfortunately means you lose the game. You will have to act quickly to improve relations once your island is discovered to prevent this from happening. You can try passing peace and prohibit victims edicts for this nation as well, though this will cut off your income from them. If an invasion is imminent, you have a choice of either betraying your pirates or freeing captives of that nation to improve relations. Both of these can be very painful, but the alternative is worse. You can also try building a fort or two to repel an invasion and hope for the best but this is dicey. The best option is to try to boost relations with your first peaceful nation and make them your patron, if your relations are already close to harmonious. Remember, you can get a big boost in relations by passing the free captives edict even if you have no captives of that nationality.
Once your hoard is over 5,000 gold, make sure you are working towards having four frigates or galleons and give your pirates more shore time to build up their happiness. Once you have four frigates, free some captives of your peaceful nation if your relations are not already harmonious and victory will be yours! Overall, this is a very challenging and fun episode worth playing again and choosing a different great power to be friendly with or trying to achieve better relations without an invasion.
Recruiting Captains: The captains you recruit for your ships can have a large effect on the plunder you gain and the morale of your pirates. Be sure to click on the captain's name in the recruit captain edict menu to check the cyclopedia information before committing your hard-earned gold. Check their leadership, courage and notoriety ratings as well as skill ratings in the skills that are important to you. Leadership adds to your pirate's courage to keep fighting in a battle and notoriety reduces the courage of the opposing ship's crew. Courage affects whether your ship will flee or pursue when encountering another ship, so a captain with low courage may get low plunder. The seamanship skill is another important one that affects how many ships you will encounter and how effective your ship will be at boarding another ship. However, this also depends on the seamanship of your crew, so the captain's rating may have minimal effect. If you combine the leadership, courage and notoriety ratings, the best captains are Edward Teach, Henry Morgan and Laurens de Graff, with a total of 17.
Episode 14 - Pirate DefenseEdit
Start Date: Jan. 1710
End Date: End of Dec. 1719
Resources: Treasury: Hoard size from episode 13 + 450, hoard 50, 20 lumber, 70 sea rations, 1 frigate
Goals: Build up the island so it offers near the maximum possible defense for pirates OR declare a great power as patron. Also achieve a personal hoard of at least 10,000 gold.
Bronze: Complete within 10 years (end Dec. 1719).
Silver: Complete within 8 years, 2.6 months (Mar. 15, 1718).
Gold: Complete within 6 years, 10.1 months (Oct. 3, 1716).
This episode gives you an option for which victory goals you want to choose, either pirate defense or a great power as patron. If you're going for the gold or even for the highest hoard size, I recommend the defense route since you do not rule out one power to prey on (also, you do not need to waste resources on building defenses all over the island, just enough to raise overall pirate defense satisfaction to a sufficient point). Also, the "Free All Captives" edict is disabled for this episode so you cannot use that to boost your relations. But the "Betray Pirates" edict is still available so you could use that at the very end of a game but this would decrease your score and still take time to build relations even if you pass peace and prohibit victims edicts at the start. So, for this guide, I am assuming you are going it alone and building up your defences.
The briefing states that you need near the maximum possible defense rating, which you would think is close to 100%. However, from the event scripting, the requirement is only 87% or higher, which is very reasonable to achieve. For a list of buildings and structures that affect defense, press P to open the pirate satisfaction page and click on the text for defense on the chart legend to open the defense satisfaction page on the right. This page also gives your current defense rating at the top so you will want to check it often. Buildings that boost defense ratings are the normal ones on the defense menu plus the palace, black market, weapons industries, docks and shipyards and all pirate schools. So you can see it should be easy to achieve a good defense rating with all these options available.
The two biggest challenges of this episode are acute shortages of captives and sea rations. To counteract the captives problem, you will have to build a second ship early on, preferably a small one that can go out often on raiding missions and also to explore for other settlements to raid. To counteract rations shortages, you will need to build at least one more sea ration factory closer to the corn farms available north of your palace. Also try to get skeleton haulers to your factories as soon as possible.
With that in mind, these are your building priorities: second sawmill, shipyard, more corn farms, second dock, second sea ration factory, black market, graveyard. After these, build more entertainment buildings as well as fear structures to keep captives in line and defense structures towards your goal of high defense. Actually, these two items are good strategy in any game. Keep an eye on the orange and silver happiness/resignation bars at the left to see where your attention is needed most. Also check the defense page often to know what your rating is. You should also get your weapons industry up and running to help the defense rating.
The secondary goal of 10,000 gold in your hoard is no small challenge either. Make sure to set your pirate cave to Stash Maximum at the beginning and also to set your entertainment to at least middling rates to rake in the profits. Get cruising early with the black market and try to explore around your home region for more settlements and trade routes. To win gold, you will need lots of successful cruises, so get two or three ships to cruise with besides your initial frigate. The docks and shipyard also help your defense rating.
As the deadline for gold approaches in October 1716, keep building defense related structures and cruising for plunder. If all goes well, you should have a decent defense rating by then. As your hoard approaches 10,000, pause and ransom off your wealthy captives near the deadline and the gold should be yours. My gold win for my second campaign came on my second full attempt in June 1716 (after first losing my head in a rebellion and losing the island to a Spanish invasion). My hoard was 11,294 and a score of 17,798.
On skeleton haulers: With a critical shortage of captives in this episode, your best friends will be these indefatigable skeleton haulers. Be sure to build a graveyard early on and raise lots of skeletons as your cash grows from cruising. They will free up your live captives to work in other jobs.
Episode 15 - The Last Golden AgeEdit
Start Date: Jan. 1718
End Date: end Dec. 1729
Resources: Treasury=hoard size from episode 14 + 450, hoard 50, 20 lumber, 70 sea rations, 1 frigate
Goals: Build up your pirate cove to include six captains and six pirate ships by the end of 1729.
Bronze: Complete within 12 years (end Dec. 1729).
Silver: Complete within 11 years (end Dec., 1728).
Gold: Complete within 10 years (end Dec., 1727).
These last two episodes are somewhat disappointingly easy compared to the last two very challenging ones, despite the fact your Greedy nature is replaced with Laziness, which makes captive workers less efficient. But they can still be a challenge if you are not careful and if you want to edit the scripts, you can always make it more challenging yourself.
The biggest challenge of this episode is the high price of recruiting captains, 5,000 gold. You start out with over 10,000 gold in your treasury, but you need to recruit three more captains, so you will have to come up with at least 5,000 more through cruising. However, this is not really as difficult as it sounds, since size doesn't matter when it comes to ships, for the goals of this episode anyway. You could go for a really fast win by only building a boatyard and building 5 snows and doing all your cruising with your starting frigate. But that's not really much fun and you have a full ten years to win gold, so why not go for some bigger ships and plunder? Preferably schooners, sloops, and brigantines; these ships are reasonably priced for their size and effectiveness in cruises.
A second challenge is the relatively sparse vegetation for lumber, but there is some fairly dense forest to the northeast of the palace. Start by building a timber camp and sawmill up there and another timber camp by the first sawmill. Set your pirate cove to stash a little or a lot, but not maximum. You want to save some for your treasury to recruit captains but you also want a good hoard for the final episode. Kidnap a shipwright and build a couple of corn farms, then if you are going for the big ships, build a shipyard either to the west of the stockade as close to the rocks as possible, or on the other end of the beach next to the small lagoon. You will find it a challenge to find places for all six docks so you may want to experiment with their placement early on so you know where they will fit in.
From here on it is standard procedure, using a black market to stock your ships and building enough entertainment buildings and fear/order buildings to keep your pirates happy and your captives resigned. Cruising can be fairly dangerous very quickly, so be sure to move your cruise areas around and send your ships out together as much as possible. Near the end of my game I was sending out two frigates and two brigantines all at once or at least in pairs.
A final challenge (did I say this episode was easy?) once you start cruising is international diplomacy. To avoid an invasion from Spain, I had to promise peace, prohibit Spanish victims and betray Spanish pirates twice! Luckily, none of the captains are Spanish. Be careful not to betray pirates of the same nationality as your captains or you will lose automatically since they will not return. Of course, if you can avoid all captive escapes, they will not find out your secret location, but this can be difficult.
Once you have recruited all three additional captains and built five ships, you have to choose whether to win early or wait until early 1727 before building your sixth ship. I couldn't wait, so built my sixth ship in 1724, getting a gold medal, hoard of 6,851 and a score of 44,344.
On editing scripts: As mentioned at the start, you can make any scenario or episode more challenging for yourself by editing the winning conditions in the scripts. Some recommended changes for this episode would be to lower the time limits for gold and silver, add an additional goal of having a hoard of at least 5,000 or 7,500 or to require a certain happiness level of your pirates since this is all about establishing a successful new pirate cove in the Bahamas.
Episode 16 - The War of Jenkins' EarEdit
Start Date: Jan. 1738
End Date: End of Dec. 1747
Resources: Treasury = hoard size from episode 15 + 150, hoard 50, 40 lumber, 70 sea rations, 1 frigate (fully equipped)
Goals: Gain a hoard of 7,500 gold within ten years. Your main target is the British Royal Navy.
Bronze: Complete within 10 years (end Dec. 1747).
Silver: Complete within 8 years (end Dec. 1745).
Gold: Complete within 6 years (end Dec. 1743).
This episode is all about cruising for profit, as the briefing states, and is reasonably easy to win with a gold medal. Your island starts with an iron mine, blast furnace, blacksmithy, church, gallows, shipyard and four entertainment buildings. You have Spain as your patron but she will not provide any captives in this episode. But you also have both emergency funding and spy on settlement edicts available to help you out, so be sure to have the tutorial on to see the messages. Set your pirate cave to stash maximum and then pass the emergency funding edict. Then pass the spy edict, which will reveal three regions with English trade routes and/or settlements.
Building ships will be crucial for cruising, so start by building a second sawmill to the rear of the palace and a timber camp or two in addition to a camp by the existing sawmill. Eventually, you will want a third sawmill here too. Build some more corn farms, a second sea ration factory, a second iron mine and a black market to supply your ships. In the meantime, it is tempting to send your initial fully-equipped frigate out cruising, but beware! The British Royal Navy is out there and any encounters will likely be devastating for you. It's best to wait until you have at least two ships to send out together. So save up enough lumber for at least a schooner, but better yet a brigantine and while you're waiting, send the frigate out on raiding and kidnapping missions for the first year. Once a second ship is available, start cruising in your home region only to build up their skill levels and be ready to restore from a quick save. I tried keeping my ships on the generous plunder share setting to attract more recruits, but it only seemed to delay getting my hoard up and didn't make much difference in recruits. Keep it at selfish and try to do enough raids that you have excess captives to pressgang. Also, build a graveyard early on so that you can pressgang haulers and replace them with skeleton haulers.
From here on it's the usual cruise for plunder and build up your entertainment to keep your pirates happy. I got a gold just before the deadline in November 1743, with a hoard of 9,506 and score of 48,069.
Maximizing your final hoard: If you have enough entertainment buildings to keep a fair number of wealthy captives around, you can build up a good hoard just before the final victory notice. Keep an eye on your pirate cave as the hoard approaches the goal of 7,500. As soon as a ship docks after a cruise, pause the game immediately and check if the hoard is over the goal or not. If it is, ransom all wealthy captives (and skilled captives if you want to go all the way) and then unpause. The next day will bring the victory message. I got hoards of 9,506 and 10,384 on the two tries I made at this episode using these tactics. You can apply this in any scenario that has a hoard threshold for a goal. If the scenario has a fixed time period, do it just before the end.
Of course, after scoring the victory, you can continue playing and the episode becomes a sandbox.
|Missions • Buildings • Edicts • Factions • Ships • Pirate King • Captains • Pirates • Captives • Wealthy Captives|