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About the product
- Two different single player campaigns: Adventurer and Trader
- Naval battles, raids, plundering and invasions await the Adventurer, while the Trader will develop trade routes and the economy to earn glory, fortune and power
- 16 different ship types, such as powerful Galleons or versatile Frigates
- Organize trade with 60 different cities such as Port-au-Prince or Tortuga
- A comprehensive trade system, with supply and demand dynamically setting the price of goods and wares, like in the real world
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The Caribbean, in the turbulent 17th Century. The mighty kingdoms of Spain, England, France and the Netherlands fight over the colonies. And there you are, a young sea captain whose only goal is to become the most powerful man in the New World. To achieve that goal, you may choose one of the two available campaigns: will you become an Adventurer or a Trader?If you chose the way of the Adventurer, lead an unforgiving campaign for the conquest of the seas: invasion, piracy, bounty hunting, raiding; do whatever it takes to build your own empire in the Caribbean. And of course, trade will have a less important role to play in your rise.The way of the Trader is mostly about developing your riches and your economic power. To be the most powerful Trader of the New World, you have to create trade routes, build industries and develop the economy of the colonies. In Free Play mode, you can mix both of those in any way you want, letting you create your own unique and exciting story. Develop a successful trading company, lead your ships in beautiful 3D naval battles and force your opponents to their knees!
From the Manufacturer
The Caribbean, in the turbulent 17th Century. The mighty kingdoms of Spain, England, France and the Netherlands fight over the colonies. And there you are, a young sea captain whose only goal is to become the most powerful man in the New World. To achieve that goal, you may choose one of the two available campaigns: will you become and Adventurer or a Trader? If you chose the way of the Adventurer, lead an unforgiving campaign for the conquest of the seas: invasion, piracy, bounty hunting, raiding; do whatever it takes to build your own empire in the Caribbean. And of course, trade will have a less important role to play in your rise. The way of the Trader is, on the opposite, mostly about developing your riches and your economic power. To be the most powerful Trader of the New World, you have to create trade routes, build industries and develop the economy of the colonies. Of course, in Free Play mode, you can mix both of those in any way you want, letting you create your own unique and exciting story. For the first time in the acclaimed Port Royale series, you are not alone in the beautiful and seemingly so peaceful seas of the Caribbean. The Multiplayer mode allows up to 4 players to play through LAN or over the Internet. Develop a successful trading company, lead your ships in beautiful 3D naval battles and force your opponents to their knees!
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My main gripe is such. There is NO WAY to effectively defend your island. You can build a fort and put up a few minor defenses, but literally any nation who wants your island can take it. You can station a fleet at your island allegedly set to "defend" but they don't become involved in it's defense island's defense. They only defend themselves from attack. If you want land or a small empire more quickly you'll need to attack and try to conquer other islands. The problem is you may have to fight 1-20 different enemy fleets (depending on what's stationed there) before you're allowed to attempt your attack on the actual island. It is so unfair and unjust that the game may use fleets for defense you will most likely stop playing in irritation.
I've logged a good 40 hours trying to make this an enjoyable experience. It just isn't. The learning curve at the start was steep and it took a good 10 hours to figure out everything. The instruction manual is seriously lacking! There are a few "add-ons" you can buy to help improve your island's defenses, but they are rather pointless and ineffective. Until your fleets can auto-defend you will be frustrated and annoyed. This isn't worth the effort unless you can buy this for 10 bucks or less and have a week-end to kill.
Made the mistake of trying to get the Xbox version first thinking that it had been newly designed for console play-as in first person steering the ship/battles, land conquests, etc (something like a Sim City experience perhaps?). We were wrong and quickly disappointed once the game began, and we were greeted with the same old map (the multiple tutorials replaced with 2 choices, same missions though, and everything else about the game, the same).
-Menu/ship information much easier (once you figure it out).
-Trade routes are easier to set up (at least for the mapping portion, plus you can actually see all of your active routes on a map as to not duplicate.
-Battles, instead of being limited to selecting one ship at a time, against multiple enemies, all of your war ships can battle (and they've improved an automated "Max" button to automatically set your fleet in the most powerful arrangement).
-Sea battles- You have far more control, all of your war ships battle and you can pick up sailors during battle.
-Attacking hideouts: If they have towers, you don't need to manually destroy them as before-your ship sails in to the designated spot and blasts them. Then, you launch a land attack with your strongest ship (make sure you have enough sailors, swords and firearms) then can send in additional ships as needed-not all at once. Personally, I also like the "automated" feature-as long as you're stronger than the opponent, you'll win, except there will never be any ships or goods left.
-You can't adjust the trade quantities between 1,10 or 100 like previously.
-Your "reputation" wears off quickly in towns, which is needed to establish new warehouses/businesses. In Port Royale 2, it kept building as you traded with the towns. In this new version, it's almost impossible, unless you keep going between 3 or 4 very closely located cities. You start to build your reputation with a town, but by the time you return with requested goods, you're back at near 0%. There are towns I've traded regularly with-over and over, can't get above 3%. (you need 25% in order to purchase a building license).
-You also can't buy your favoritism in a town by purchasing harbor protection, donating, etc.(like in Port Royale 2) because you need a certain number of reputation points (always dwindling).
-Lack of reputation means you can't repair or buy ships outside of your own harbor, build businesses, get discounts on repairs, etc.You also can't build anything in any other town
-You have very little control over your warehouse. Control has been replaced by hiring a "Steward" whom is to purchase goods at a specified percentage of production costs, and sell them at another. You can block certain goods, but you have no way of individually purchasing items/selling items or quantities (or holding a certain commodity you're producing for trade routes). Plus, you have to pay him a fee each day and can't "choose"?
-They no longer have "settlers" as a commodity, it's been moved to "equip" for when you're looking for sailors to do battle with, I suppose, since it's on the same tab as artillery. It's very easy to forget about.
-You no longer receive notifications of new pirates. So, you can check in, there aren't ANY pirates (I've learned the hard way to keep tabs on them as well as my $ making and take them out quickly), then the next thing you know, there are 3 of them, far stronger than you are-zapping you at every opportunity.
I gave it a good go. My son loves the new battle mode on the Xbox (plus the downloaded expansion allowing HIM to be the pirate-which he beat in like 2 days). I personally am too frustrated with the loss of reputation and inability to build new businesses, going back to Port Royale 2.
A lot of people were also complaining about the learning curve of the game. However, I can remember PR2 was no different in that respect. The only "learning" I had to do was to figure out where the menu buttons were moved to as well as a few things in the combat parts.
I do not rate this at 5 stars because (besides graphics and OS requirement upgrades) there was nothing really added to the in-game experience. Over all, I think it is an exceptional game if you can get past its quirks.