Pirates are one of those reliable elements that will, without fail, draw attention to a product. The roguish mystique that lies behind the whole pirate thing pretty much ensures an audience. That doesn't ensure that the product itself will be worth playing, however.
Pirateers skirts the edges of good quality and bad. It's not horrible, but it sure ain't fantastic.
Pirates are well-known for their unslakable greed, and the same can be said of the scurvy dogs in Pirateers. They want loot, and they want a lot of it. In these seas there's one prize that's sought above all others: a fabled Eye, split into five pieces, which is said to give its user unlimited riches.
The story sounds like it should be promising. It's not, really. The Eye pieces just provide a laborious route to the last boss. Gathering them is no different than any other quest in Pirateers, nor even more difficult. Even if the plot was of interest, it's so riddled with spelling mistakes and time-worn cliches that the fun is sucked out of the experience. Blech.
Anyway. Plot aside, Pirateers is an RPG-esque shooter. You captain a ship of pirates, you steer it about and steal booty, you gather bounties, you blow up other ships. Huzzah.
Ugh. Pirateers is a damned slow game, and the controls are the mastermind behind the lull. I understand that sailing ships were neither swift nor spry by modern standards, but this is a video game. These ships don't HAVE to act realistically - but they do. Every battle is reduced to a slow, laborious circle around the enemy ships, firing whenever the cannons are primed. Hell, to make things even easier you can stop your boat in front of the other ship and just fire while they flail uselessly against your hull.
I'll be fair. The controls aren't glitchy or horribly problematic. The programming's fine. They're just SO DANG SLOW.
Pirateers looks... okay. For a bird's eye view-type shooter, you get what you'd expect: shots of ships patrolling the water. Shrug? Not much to say. Nothing fantastically or offensive about most of the game.
My problem, then? The mugshots. The horribly disproportionate avatars. I guess the artist was trying to be stylistic, but, no. They're just ugly. And weird. And... not... done.
Pirates of the Caribbean Lite, that's Pirateers. A scant selection of songs, none of them the least bit memorable. Sound effects are equally negligible. Unimpressive audio overall.
Pirateers starts off a little too difficult than it should. You can upgrade your ship to boost its speed, reload time and overall cannon power, among other things, but you need money to do that - and your ship is a piece of crap at first. Expect to flounder in poverty for a few days until you can figure out how to properly aim your ship.
After that? Easy. The ships are generally the same throughout, and even though you'll face a few new attack methods none of them are surprising or difficult to overcome. Circle, circle, circle.
... and then you hit the last boss. And it's WAY too hard, because a) your ship can't even come close to reacting quickly enough, and b) nothing you've fought up to that point even REMOTELY prepares you for what it can do. Dodging through waves of enemy fire with your slow-ass vessel? Bullshit, I say!
Pirateers is not a very good game. The amount of time it takes to play is nowhere near equal to the amount of fun it provides, which is not much. There's so much dull repetition that I'd be surprised if many people last out the full experience. If you DO plan on playing, at least visit the Armor Games website, as you'll gain access to a slightly faster ship. Better than the bucket you'd receive anywhere else.