Place Planks And Plunder: Pixel Piracy

By Craig Pearson on October 9th, 2013 at 8:00 am.

grappling hooks!
I have been on a mission to reclaim the RPS piracy tag. I want happy stories about pirate games when you click on it, and not sad stories about games being pirated. I took a break, because of Assassin’s Creed IV’s ridiculous video spam, but I am delighted to direct your attention to Pixel Piracy. It puts you in charge of a pirate crew in a procedurally generated Caribbean.

I’ve been following progress over on IndieDB, watching as this cute-as-a-parrot sea-set roguelike sails into view. Now it’s closer (they sent RPS a tech demo that’s a bit broken), we can make out what’s on board. It begins with world-generation, asking me what I thought about my world (sickening, fascinating, unpleasant?), what the most recent events were (war, festival, comet flyover?), and how cowardly, brave, or drunk my father was. I won’t see enough of the world to see what difference this makes. An island is generated with some shops, and an incredibly jaunty tune begins. Piracy!

As the invisible guiding hand of piracy, I have to recruit a crew, give them all positions (people will starve without an onboard cook) outfit my ship, and set sail in my customised cutter. I get to design the shape of my ship in the editor, placing each plank where I want it to go, sinking in masts, and setting sail. It’s as simple as clicking together something a bit boat-shaped in the water, which is how I’d describe the monstrosity that I created. With my crew ordered on board, and one selected as a captain, I hit the world map. Onwards, to gather more resources and bump my petty little ship from a raft into a terrifying visage of piracy!

This is just a corner of what’s available. It’s pretty big. I selected an island not too far off and hit ‘sail’. Now this is where it’s clear that this incredibly early code: we arrived at a small island, I hear a roar that sounds like the T-Rex from Jurassic Park is on holiday, and order my strongest pirate onto the island. As soon as he touches land, the ground vanishes and he drowns. The map then won’t let me select another island to visit. I’m more annoyed that I can’t carry on: the atmosphere is lovely, and if that huge splash of blue has lots to see and do, and plenty of ships to fight, then I’ll eagerly take to its sea.

One to keep an eye out for.

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25 Comments »

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  1. jkz says:

    I would really love an open world piracy game with proper sailing simulation in first person. Capture different ships, raid towns, evade the Navy, give ‘em a broadside, yarrr!

  2. Premium User Badge

    Gap Gen says:

    Of course in the future they’ll have holosims about software pirates swigging Dr Pepper and singing songs like “yo ho ho baby one more time” and “avast ye octopus’ garden”, while forcing publishers to walk a pixelated plank.

  3. Siimon says:

    Yes, so much yes to this game! Shut up and take my money! :)

  4. hemmingjay says:

    Alex Poysky and the whole team over there are doing a great job and I really look forward to the end project. They are taking an unprecedented level of feedback from the community to make the game everyone wants. This looks like it could very well be the true indie title of 2014. I expect my gaming time in 2014 will be split between Pixel Piracy, Starbound and Novus Aeterno.

  5. 2use says:

    Have been following this for some time – this will be one of those games that stand out in the crowd! and yeah, “mount & blade with pirates” – sounds awesome!

  6. Dungeonmans says:

    I love open world exploration, really looking forward to this. I want to make a boat that is 99% cannons and 1% a swarthy man pointing and laughing at sinking enemy garbage scows.

  7. subr3v says:

    This game is very promising! Can’t wait to be able to play it! I like the premise, the style and everything… and pirates games are always welcome :D

  8. Adkins1984 says:

    Finally! A chance to be a pirate without the whole “risk of bodily harm” thing. Game looks really good. Can’t wait for it to come out.

  9. ole_andreas86 says:

    This looks really awesome! Love the art style and thoughts behind it!
    Can’t wait to play it. :D

  10. Bunkerface says:

    I’ve been following the project for a while now and am really excited for it, hope that with them having a publisher of sorts there’s a good chance they’ll get on Steam! Yarrrr, and so forth. ;)

    With the way it controls it also seems like a perfect game for the VITA or somesuch, worth considering?

  11. Artax says:

    Pirate thing Terraria-like? Can’t wait for this, looks promising!

  12. Vallisca says:

    Great idea from some good guys. Cant wait to see how this game turns out! Good luck Alex Poysky and crew.. Code Avarice sends it’s regards!

  13. Anxo says:

    That screenshots looks great!

    A pirate game inspired in FTL, Pirates and Mount & Blade. The idea looks promising!
    Looking forward to see the game on Steam and enjoy it with Steam achievements.

  14. JesusFabre says:

    The game looks really fresh and dinamic on the trailer. Good luck to these passionate and talented team!