Video Game Review: Pirates of the Caribbean Online

I heard about Pirates of the Caribbean Online from my youngest son so I had to check it out. Miles, Mendel and I spent days playing this game to see how far you can get on a free account. Each of us picked different skills to test and worked as a team in battles and whatnot, to see how the game would be. I also tried to accomplish each of my missions and here is what we thought.

Pirates of the Caribbean Online: Starting Out
Starting out we got to pick our pirate characters. I picked a female pirate and the boys picked male pirates. They have a random name generator or you can scroll through the various combinations of names to pick “pirate” names. Some examples are Hector Bernmalley, Miles (by request), Constance Dreadsteel and Jack Bladekidd.

You start out in jail and Jack Sparrow’s face is the first you see as he tells you something about being in jail and blablabla… sorry, I can’t stand the sound of his voice so I hit esc and skipped it. Once you kick your way out of jail while the guard sleeps, Jack Sparrows gives you a little tutorial and you are ready to use your WASD keys to walk to the door, shift to open and then leave to explore the area. You can also you your mouse to help you walk faster and easier. Just right click and point where you want to go while walking forward. It will lead you in that direction.

A Note on Pirate Sexes
Out of curiosity, I noticed that the boys pirates seemed to move faster, heal faster and generally seemed better than my female pirate. So I created a male pirate character and played as Bartholmew Yellowbeard for a little bit. He seemed to be a lot better than my female character. Sexist Disney! But I played the rest of the time as Constance.

Pirates of the Caribbean: Missions, Follow the Light Beams in the Sky
By following the light beams in the sky, you complete steps to your missions. They are things like, find Gibbs, talk to Jack, kill a few cadets and such. I was the mission tester. For the most part, the missions are pretty fun except the boring dialog that you have with each character. One of the missions leads you to Barbosa and you have to shoot at his monkey, then he gives you a gun and tells you all about the code. *yawn* but at least you get a gun… then you are told not to shoot anyone with it. Alrighty then.

The missions went well up until I was told to go get a tattoo. I managed to find the place (after sailing all over to find out it was on the island I just left LOL, even in virtual worlds I get lost) When I went inside and went to get a tattoo, ALL the tattoos are for “unlimited members only”. I checked into the prices just to see how much it costs to become an unlimited member. The prices of $9.95 a month, $49.95 semi-annually or $79.95 annually brought my mission to liberate the Black Pearl to a screeching halt. I don’t want to complete missions that bad. (of course, if someone else wants to pay for that, I’ll happily play the game a LOT and let you know how it plays out.)

Pirates of the Caribbean: Notoriety and Skills
Each thing you do (battle the cadets, sailing, fishing, etc) gains you notoriety and skill levels for each thing you are doing (sailing, fishing, fighting with a sword, shooting, firing cannons, etc). After awhile, trying to gain notoriety becomes so insanely difficult that it’s hardly worth it. We also found that each skill level tops out at level 7. Unless you want Disney to rape your wallet, that’s as good as it gets for free.

Pirates of the Caribbean: Earning Gold
I found that I could gain gold by helping repair ships by going to the benches near the piers and by fishing. The benches have mini-games you play (sawing woods, hammering nails, plugging holes, etc) and you get paid coins when you are finished. Depending on the difficulty level depends on the amount of coins you are paid.

Fishing was pretty fun. Cast your line, try to snag a fish and then reel it in. When it starts fighting you, stop reeling. Depending on the fish and the size determines the amount of coins you get and the amount of coins and skill gained. As you level up your skill, you can catch larger fish. Once you hit skill level 7 though, that’s it. No more skill levels and the joy of hoping to snag a shark is gone because you won’t be able to unless your willing to fork over a small fortune to Disney.

Pirates of the Caribbean: Sea Battles!
You can’t have a game about pirates without sea battles! I found that the three of us are a pretty awesome team! Mendel worked on his cannon skills as his game test and Miles worked on his sailing skills as his game test.

First, Miles sailed the ship while Mendel and I blew up ship. Note: do not fire at ships with flags! You will have to board the ship and you will be killed and end up back in jail.

As you level up on cannon skills you will unlock new types of ammo which you can use in battles. It’s pretty fun until about level 7. After that, it’s all the same and gets rather dull. I agree with this wholeheartedly and I stopped playing at cannon level 6.

As you sail, you level up which gives you a speed boost ability, which is good for turning and running away like a little sissy pirate; and come about which tightens your turn so you can turn around faster (which also helps you run away like a sissy pirate… but also keeps you alive).

Overall, the battles are fun up until you level out at level 7.

Pirates of the Caribbean: Overall Game Rating

  • My rating: 7 out of 10… only because that’s the only level you can reach in free game play.
  • Miles rating: 9 out of 10: It’s so massive that it would take forever to explore everywhere.
  • Mendel Rating: 6 out of 10: The glitches can make it fun at times, although they are hard to find. Other times it makes it difficult (like when you have to kill a cadet and he’s standing in a tree). It would get a 7 but I played Assassin’s Creed.

Game Play Rating

  • My Rating: 7 out of 10: since I don’t know what is beyond that skill level.
  • Miles Rating: 8 out of 10: The characters glitch while running and the server lags which throws you off a lot.

Control Rating

  • My Rating: 9 out of 10: The controls are pretty easy to use but so easy I fell asleep at the helm. During battles onboard, you would have to press esc to leave one cannon and run to the other. The esc key made it awkward. But other than that, it was good for controls.
  • Miles rating: 8 out of 10: It can be hard to play on a laptop where almost every non-letter key has two functions.

Fun Factor

  • My Rating: up until skill level 7, it’s really fun. It has so many things to do, it’s hard to get bored on the game until you level out  all your skills. I’ll say fun factor is a 8 out of 10. I take away two stars, one for the monthly membership and one for the low level cap.
  • Miles Rating: That’s a tough one. It’s such a unique game that you really have to try it for yourself. I don’t know how to rate it with the wide variety of games within the game.
Family Friendly?

Oh yeah! By far this is very family friendly. I am thinking of borrowing a younger kid and parent and having them test it out for a “young kids family” review.

Fun for the whole family! I didn’t even cuss while playing! (It’s a miracle!) <<< Miles says, "Yup!"


I am that crazy lady that lives in the bell tower with all the bats. I keep blogging to keep what little sanity I have left.

Posted in Reviews, Video Games

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December 2011
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