Pirates of the Burning Sea

PUBLISHED: 13:17 11 January 2008 | UPDATED: 21:16 26 October 2009

Pirates of the Burning Sea

Pirates of the Burning Sea

Pirates of the Burning Sea Price: £29.99 Format: PC Age rating: 12+ IF you ve always dreamt of a life on the ocean waves but never ventured further than a booze cruise to Calais, then Pirates of the Burning Sea might give you a better taste of nautical

Pirates of the Burning Sea

Price: £29.99

Format: PC

Age rating: 12+

IF you've always dreamt of a life on the ocean waves but never ventured further than a booze cruise to Calais, then Pirates of the Burning Sea might give you a better taste of nautical adventure.

Set in the Caribbean of 1720, it's a gigantic online game that can accommodate hundreds of players at any one time and lets them take to the seas as murderous pirates or valiant sea-faring captains. It's a hugely refreshing change from the usual goblins, elves and orcs that inhabit similar fantasy landscapes.

For those of you who've been meaning to dip a gaming toe into the eccentric world of massively multiplayer online games, Pirates is the perfect opportunity to jump onboard. You can choose to serve as a naval officer, merchant seaman or privateer for England, France or Spain or raise the Jolly Roger and live the life of a pirate. Once you've chosen sides you're then thrown into the thick of things and have to fight for control of more than 80 ports.

As a fledgling captain or pirate you have to quickly find your sea legs before engaging in a series of epic sea battles, sword fights and quests. The more you successfully complete or survive, the more your character's experience grows which, in turn, increases their fighting and sea-faring skills. It's not as easy as it sounds, though, and the game can be hard going at first. Even the nippiest schooner has a vast turning circle so bringing your guns to bear on an opponent's ship takes time and no small amount of strategy.

If you don't like to get your feet wet, there's also a thriving player-based economy to take care of. Raw materials have to be turned into manufactured goods, traded for profit or used to build a flotilla of ships. It's possible to lose yourself in this aspect of the game and totally ignore the warfare elements, but we're confident that the lure of ship-to-ship combat will get the better of you eventually.

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