Great game, except it is a bug-ridden horse***t. Heard a lot of good things about this game. I'm guessing it got worse as time went on?
The game feels more like early access or beta test version, and only couple hours into playing I encountered a "two captains" bug which forced me to kill my best crew member. Aside from crew randomly failing to get on board the ship correctly and plunging into their deaths - which apparently is part of the game design -, I encountered random mutiny bug late game when I got about 18 crew members, and had to resort to constantly loading/saving the game which was extremely frustrating that I finally gave up.
More about the bugs:
Two captains bug - it happens when you load/restart the day in the midst of battle; your "first mate" becomes the new capptain, while the old captain is still alive. You effectively have two guys with [C] on top of their heads, and the bottomleft side health/hunger/morale HUD constantly flickers between the old and the new captains. I tried looking into editing the xml savefile to no avail. The only way out was to kill one of them.
Random mutily bug - Someone in the crew keep mutinying randomly even though morale/hunger gage are full and I constantly pay their salaries every two minutes. It started happening after I hired bunch of new guys to train as ♥♥♥♥ removers while I train my older crew to man the guns, and it's extremely frustrating because the one who mutiny is chosen completely at random including my old crew whom I've invested in significantly. It happens while sailing, while onboard enemy ship, while on land/town/tavern you name it. Again I tried virtually everything including teaching everyone to clean and poop less, increasing the ship size to almost twice the screen width, installing sword stations to keep them busy and separated, etc.. - oh and of course paying them every two minutes and stocking ♥♥♥♥ load of rum and food. At first I suspected a sudden and synchronized pooping of 20 pirates caused flash crash in morale, so I taught every one of them to clean and poop properly; no not it. I installed 5 pictures and 3 plants and separated them into groups of 6~7 across the ship; no not that either. I even went into xml file and changed crew traits that are potentially negative such as 'liar', 'greedy', etc., and increased friendship points; still happens. We take down Lv.8 pirate ship and the captain is busy running around enemy ship looting chests and urns, and one of my oldest and best guy (lv 40) decides to "go bad" in the middle of 18 other guys and kills himself instantly.
Few other bugs/quirks that are worth mentioning:
- Ransom kills do not increase "renown" points. It says it does in the game, but in the savefile it is stuck at 0.
- Stations that increase pirate stats, such as swords, books(?), and grinding wheels are almost unusable because they are like pirate magnets; all my fishermen guys are busy sweating with swordplay and end up starving the crew.
- Cannot place cannonballs at sea and must dock to place them. why?? also since when cannonballs are called "bombs"? Never would've figured that out on my own.
- When you try to move few pirates at once, one or two always ends up not getting the order and stay behind.
- Teaching swimming is a must since when you move a large group of guys(~10+), one or two will always end up slipping and falling into the sea; and this is without "careless" trait, mind you.
- Other minor interface glitches: After selling the same items a few time (such as wooden block) sound is gone. You feel like something is broken but it's not. When you close shipbuilding interface while placing a block, block info HUD remains on the screen. Come on guys, these are pretty basic stuff.
All in all it was pretty interesting game; with great potential. I really enjoyed the game otherwise I wouldn't have played it over ten hours and tried so hard to "fix" it somehow. However the game has some very serious shortcomings, such as unfriendly and glitchy user interface, broken game mechanics, and some serious bugs that could completely ruin your experience. For that I'd give it 4 out of 10. I personally believe this cannot be a production version, v1.0+. If it were early access/dev beta I would've understood, but this isnt. Lastly, from now on I'll ignore any "official" reviews that gave this buggy software 10/10 and go straight to reading customer reviews first. "Mostly positive".. Wow.