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Buccaneer’s Bounty

Score: 83%
ESRB: Teen
Publisher: Cinemaware Marquee
Developer: Ascaron
Media: CD/3
Players: 1 - MP
Genre: Real-Time Strategy/ Action/ Simulation

Graphics & Sound:

Yo-ho! Yo-ho! A pirate's life for meeee! I love being a pirate. The salt in the air. The free will to travel the world and take what I like. The scurvy, ok maybe not the scurvy, but I love pirate games. So what could be better to me than taking three very well-loved, and dare I say treasured, pirate simulations and putting them together into one chest. You would have Buccaneer's Bounty. A trio of games that are sure to put the "wind in yer sails matey."

These games were originally released two years ago, and you are going to be able to tell that from the graphics. All of the pre-renders are beautiful, but in no way does this detract from the pure artistry of these games.

I was, and still am impressed, with the number of ambient sounds these games have. There is a lot of attention to detail, and timing and placement are masterful. The music itself doesn't steer too far away from what you would expect, with harpsichord music for governors' meetings and livestock mews when speaking to peasants.


Now to be fair, I really should give each of these games their individual credit. You will quickly see the similarities when you start playing them, with trading and boat building as well as career advancement and expanding your wealth. But, there are subtle differences between each I would like to point out. None of these games are simple. They hearken back to a day when you didn't just play for a few seconds to get ahead.

Patrician III: Rise of The Hanse
This game is played during a pivotal time in history, during the rise of the Hanseatic League. Your reason for being is to be eventually elected the Alderman, or head of this league. It is all about your reputation. Do whatever it takes to make sure your people are happy and your town is protected as well as your standing. Should this include piracy, then so be it. It takes one to find one, yar! But, you can also rise up as a noble trader as well. This game is about keeping everyone happy all the time.

Tortuga: Pirates of the New World
Now this one is more my style. More of the actual ship to ship combat we have come to know and love. Board or be boarded as every man on deck counts in a battle. Grow your fleet and overpower your enemies. Triumph through epic ship battle to seize lands in your countries' names and increase your wealth. However, there is a catch. Only the Governor of a town can loose you upon the next town; therefore, you have to be in good standing with him. And if you're lucky, along the way, you may even find the woman of your dreams.

Port Royale 2: Cartels, Constructions & Conquest
Bringing it all together from the other two titles, Port Royale 2 is the newest of the three games. Released in 2004, it is a very good blend of city building and swashbucklery. This game is a little more open-ended, allowing you to create a vast empire of trade routes. You must annex towns to gain control of them. Once you annex a town, you have the ability to open your own industry and become rich beyond your wildest dreams.


Buccaneer's Bounty is not a collection for land-lovers. Each of these games is a deep and immersive trip. Each of them is an extremely detailed and comprehensive experience.

Game Mechanics:

Each of these games functions very much the same with click for menu operations. Buccaneer's Bounty is chock full of trade and marketing. The interface in all three of the games are very clean and easy to read. These games are so much more in-depth than, dare I say, that other popular pirate game from Sid Meier. Sailing is very straightforward and normal sailing rules apply. Use the wind to outrun, overrun, and become victorious.

These games show their age graphically and style-wise. That doesn't keep them from being great games, but there was no forward progress in the name of gaming. This was a very good compilation of games, and they all compliment each other beautifully. Each game received high marks in their time, but there have since been a few larger pirate titles to cross these waters, that were in their own rights, a step forward in the genre of pirate games. I am still deep into all of these games and will continue to be for some time. Tired of beating games in twenty to thirty hours, not a problem here. Some parting words of advice: "Never take trade advice from a one-handed pirate" and "Never spit in the wind".

-WUMPUSJAGGER, GameVortex Communications
AKA Bryon Lloyd

Minimum System Requirements:

Minimum Requirements: Pentium II processor with a 450 MHz, 64 megabytes of RAM Windows 98 SE, Windows Me, Windows 2000 or Windows XP Video Card 16Mb Direct 3D Card, 560 megabytes (MB) of free hard disk space CD-ROM drive (4x), DirectX 8.1 (included on CD)

Recommended Requirements: Pentium III processor with a 900 or higher, at least 128 megabytes of RAM, Windows 98 SE, Windows Me, Windows 2000 or Windows XP 32Mb Direct 3D Video Card, 680 megabytes (MB) of free hard disk space


Test System:

Windows XP Pro, 3.2 GHz P4HT CPU, 2 GHz Ram, 256 PCIE 16 ATI X300

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