Does anyone still log in and play Puzzle Pirates any more?

While the puzzle can get old, I really like the economy, the fact you can exchange paid for money with in game currency and vice-versa. I like to pop in on it every now and then and play for a few weeks.

They have added more puzzles and I particularly like the Blacksmithing one and have always dug Carpentry for its tetris-y qualities.

They have two different types of servers, subscription server ($10/mo.) and a “Doubloon” server where you buy a chunk and use them to get access to just the parts of the game you would actually play. I am thinking of going back that route for a bit. I play games in quick spurts now and this would be perfect, plus it is laptop friendly.

I have not in a while and cannot remember any of my info. I picked up some Doubloons at one point, but I cannot remember my login and password. My email address is with my old cable company and in order to get my login info, I have to send them like 6 different bits of information, which of course I only have hald of since, ya know, I forgot some of it.

EDIT: AS a side topic, I wonder how it is doing? Seems to be good and there seems to have been a fair bit of inflation since last I played. They still have that big ass, fancy office I presume.

Hey Tyjenks. I know the CEO of Three Rings pretty well - PM me and I’ll see if I can get your account fixed for you.

Excellent. Even an attempt would be greatly appreciated. :D

I played this game for a few months. I was working over the road and playing it on a crappy laptop via dialup (this was before wi-fi became widespread).

I had a lot of fun with some of the mini games, but other really bugged the crap out of me. I am a strange customer when it comes to puzzle games, I tend to either find them insanely addicting, or loathe them with every spinning electron in my being. Puzzle Pirates offered a variety of both.

I never quite understood the point of exploring or going to all the different islands, but perhaps I was treating it too much like an MMORPG.

I’ve actually got the cd’s kicking around here someplace (yea, it once sold on store shelves), and they allow me to play a few of their games off line (bilge among a few others I can’t recall). I’ve been thinking about reinstalling simply because of how much I like the sword-fighting game.

I played for a long while on a press account, back when the game first came out. I reviewed it a few times over the years. Sadly, I’ve long ago misplaced the credentials for that account (various machine upgrades and office relocations).

I started up a new character on the free server recently and played for a few weeks. I typically just crew with the navy and run bilging, sailing, and carpentry. Sometimes I job on a pirate crew, if they’ll have me, but I’m one of those people that can’t stand playing other people in online games (yea, I know).

Just got notification that they’re deleting my character. I should probably log in again sometimes, but I don’t think I’ll fret too much if he dies.

I played for a little while right as they were getting the clan/flag based island ownership online, and that didn’t really jibe with my casual love affair with carpentry. I still have a fair share of doubloons on the free to play server characters I played with, and an inactive character on the subscription server.

I played intensely for several years before they started focusing a lot more on the doubloon oceans. I was in the leadership of one of the prominent warring flags on Midnight for a while, logged over 40 hours as week, and had a blast playing the game, politicking with all the other leaders, and generally raising hell and being a pirate.

Then they decided that there was more money in catering to runescape babies instead of the surprisingly mature crowd that they’d been building until then. This has apparently been a very shrewd business move for them, but the choices in development and administrative focus that this decision included made the game increasingly hostile towards my play style. After several months of increasing frustration I bailed, and a good number of people followed me.

I still have a few friends who play, but the’ve only stick around for the past few years for the familiarity and to continue to socialize with the old crowd. Almost everyone I knew has abandoned the game to the teenage-and-earlier set that they’ve been courting.

I log back in now and then to say hi to the handful of folks I know and see if anything’s changed. But whenever it has, it seems it continues to be for the worse, from my point of view.

It was hella fun while it lasted, though.

Midnight… that brings back memories.

New puzzles? I should check it out - I have a lifetime subscription, so I just need to dig up the info. But it’s been years since I last logged in.

My last few months of playing was pure focus on politics in the crews and the economy - I was one of the first shipbuilders and spent a lot of time playing the economy (buying and selling ships and ensuring I had enough raw materials) and hardly played the puzzles.

Kaos, could you go into details on the change of focus of the game? What kept me for so long was the mature playerbase and the surprisingly robust economy game behind all the cutesy graphics and focus on accessories for your little Playmobil-pirate.


Pretty much left when the community became… less than mature. Yeah, I remember the days of Beta (and some of the usernames here sound familiar - I played as Wlada) but it never was like that again. I think I quit soon after my two year subscription ran out.

I had played in the Beta and then got distracted, but enjoyed my time. Signed back on maybe a couple years ago, bought some Doubloons and made some “money” on the Doubloon exchange. I hear what you guys are saying about the Doubloon oceans and $10 a month is nothing for a subscription, but I honestly can buy $5 or $10 worth of Doubloons and play the parts I want to play. Now, whether I will actually save money in the long run, I dunno.

I do know there are 2 subscription servers and 4 Doubloon servers and I currently only have a character on a Doubloon server. I went where the population was if I remember correctly.

AS for knew games, it may just be that I just did not remember them. I had not played the rigging or Blacksmithing games before and enjoy both. Always like the Carpentry and Sailing…the Bilging is just one in a long line of matching games that I am past tired of. Not sure if the Brawling and is “new”. Additionally, I do not remember Scavenging. There just seems to be more since last I played a several more, of course, since Beta and the early days.

I like the economy in the game plus, I can play in brief spurts and still make progress. I had done nothing towards trying to buy and run my own shop before and there is a lot there with Commodities trade and the like I would like to explore. So, I am picking it up again with my Doubloon character on Malachite. Still better than obnoxious folks in many other MMORPGs.

David was kind enough to do as he mentioned above and within two hours last night, Three Rings (name withheld to protect the innocent) had me hooked back up with a new password and my login name, which I had added a “y” to…so I would have never remembered Tyyjenks.

Oh and for the record, I was corrected about the big ass office aspect, it is actually only a medium ass office. :)

I liked the art style and whatnot, but I could never get my head around the core idea that I’m essentially playing a single player puzzle game (tetris, bejeweled, whatever), but if I need to pause because my house is on fire people will yell at me.

Heh, that is true.
Playing a match game and the wife calls for you to change the kid or something and you shout back “But then the ship will be dead in the water!”.

However there is swordfighting (and possibly newer puzzles?).

It was a combination of things. I think the biggest is that the primary focus of the “high-end” game was flag warfare and island control, and by 2005 this had become stagnant. Most of the islands on Midnight were controlled, very few new ones were opening, and the alliances were large and static enough that nothing very surprising could happen.

There was a general resource glut where everyone had so many ships and supplies stockpiled that the only way to win an island held by anyone with decent backing was to wear them down via a series of blockades – and even then, the fact that the defender could simply choose to make things non-sinking meant that ships were never a depleted resource.

A number of flags had popped up – Scallywag Syndicate, Notorious Fandango, Black Sheep Brigade, Superlemon Krakatoa, a few others – which tried to shake this up, but upsetting the apple cart really annoys the apple vendors. There was a notable shift in the mindset of a number of the big players in the game thanks to these efforts, but on the whole the resistance to change from established forces was too much.

This was compounded by a number of other factors – the universal wallet made the economy much more homogenous than it should have been, and various islands lost their strategic economic importance. The appearance of “whisking potions” which allowed you to instantly warp between archipelagos only exacerbated this.

Islands by this point had become so over-populated that even if you managed to win an island (which, mind you, was now just like every other island economically) you were unlikely to be able to build much on it – and trying to raze everything so you could start from scratch drew massive amounts of ill will from the merchant set.

There were still missing crafting puzzles, there were long-standing issues with blockades, there were problems with managing pillages that made sea battling become tiresome when the level of maturity in the player base began to decrease. There were solutions raised to fix all of these – but instead, the focus was on cranking out houses and pets and other toys and opening doubloon islands.

The amount of tolerance towards hijinks and acts of, erm, being piratey went down. One of the most infamous players in the game was banned for metagaming the system too much. (Not breaking any established rules – just using their arrangement to try to wear down island owning flags in spite of the existing, ossification-promoting structure). Pillage payouts were changed so that the ability to punitively remove the pay of pirates who abandoned in battle or otherwise misbehaved was dramatically cut back, making pillaging even less rewarding than before.

And suggestions about fixing these things (making blockades automatically sinking, allowing any war to be forced to sinking if enough flags declared war on a flag which was trying to keep from being sunk, granting governors the ability to completely raze any island they wanted, and so on) were dismissed because most of them were too hostile to casual players who just wanted to puzzle lazily, furnish a house, and buy a tiger to carry around.

Add in the growing influx of much younger players, and you have a reducing pool of mature players trying to shake up a stagnant system in a world which is rapidly becoming much more hostile to aggressive play and has more or less destroyed the long-term promise of hot pirate on pirate action… and you removed the interest of anyone who liked the game for its grander schemes and ability to, you know, roleplay a pirate.

I could go on, but I need to get ready for work and this is ranty enough. I don’t want it to sound like I blame OOO for the way the game developed. I’m sure it made sound financial sense, and it seems to have benefitted them in the long run. But in so doing, they dismantled a very promising structure that I’ve seen in no MOO short of Eve Online, and turned their backs on some of their longest-playing (and biggest-paying) members in order to court the lowest common denominator. And that can’t help but make people just a little bitter. :)

I’m still thankful for the fun times I had and the friends I made, many of whom I still keep in touch with. And yes: OOO have incredible customer service and none of this takes that away from them at all.

That answer your question any?

(VPeric: I remember Wlada, although I think I became a “name” after you’d stopped playing quite so much. I was Rummykins, much to the eternal amusement of everyone who found out I was a vicious warmonger and not a drunken gnome.)

Oooh, that is excellent info. I never got to the high-end content, but I appreciate any time someone lays out their issues with support and clarity. I am not sure any of the Three Rings guys are members here, but it would be cool to see if, at this point, they have addressed those problems or if it just made more sense to stay afloat with the the route they went. OTOH, they may respectfully disagree with your assessment. :)

How long since you quit playing seriously? Just curious.

I’m sure they do. :) In spite of my general disagreement with their direction as a whole, I have the utmost respect for all of the developers individually, and I had friendly discussions with a number of them, both before and after leaving, which more or less came down to that, yes.

How long since you quit playing seriously? Just curious.

I was just going to the forum to search for my retirement post to the community, but it seems to be down right now. It was in late 2005/early 2006. (Holy crap, was that actually 4 years ago?!) I had a number of personal upheavals about that time, moved clear across the country (north to south), and with my mounting frustration with things I realized it was a good time to stop doing something that had just become No Fun At All.

I’ve tried to come back a few times, but never could get my heart into it again, and saw nothing much to convince me to try.

I’ll see if I can find the post when the forum comes back up. IIRC, it laid out my exact feelings about the direction of the game at the time.

Thanks Kaos. That answers a lot. Most of the things that you described changing wasn’t even in, when I stopped. I was very active in the beta, looking forward to blockades and whatnot and even bought the lifetime subscription… but then real life happened and I never really could get my heart into starting over, so I left. But already at that time, a lot of the people I knew did the same.

I’m glad that it’s still making money for Three Rings because a finer bunch of developers I have never experienced - even if they ended up turning it into another game.
And I was pretty sure that Daniel James posted here once or twice, but perhaps that was the old boards… or my old age misremembering.

Daniel is the one that hooked me back up with my old login information. I had joined a pirate crew/guild whatever and it seems like the whole bunch is dormant. Does that mean I can take over? I honestly do not know. Also, on the Doubloon server, I have to by an officer’s badge for 5 Doubloons that will expire in 30 days… :)

Yeah, I used to pop in regularly for a while, but lately I’ve been too short on gaming time to keep it in the rotation.

That reminds me, I still have some panorama screenshots from the end-of-beta/launch-night that I suspect the Three Rings guys would enjoy seeing.

  • Alan

Anyone from Qt3 has an open invite to my crew on Viridian. Its currently empty because I went inactive during the school quarter, so no need to worry about immature people spamming up crew chat. It is difficult to find reliable jobbers now if you are the type that likes to run pillages so be forewarned.

leave a forum pm if you want to join.