Sail the Caribbean, marauding all on the high seas or ally your ship and crew as a privateer in search of riches - the life you choose is up to you. Face dogged enemies, raid unsuspecting villages, woo fair maidens, avoid capture or dig for buried treasure. Discover what it takes to become one of the most famous pirates in history!
User reviews:
Recent:
Very Positive (50 reviews) - 90% of the 50 user reviews in the last 30 days are positive.
Overall:
Very Positive (1,513 reviews) - 94% of the 1,513 user reviews for this game are positive.
Release Date: Jul 11, 2005

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Buy Sid Meier's Pirates!

 

About This Game

Sail the Caribbean, marauding all on the high seas or ally your ship and crew as a privateer in search of riches - the life you choose is up to you. Face dogged enemies, raid unsuspecting villages, woo fair maidens, avoid capture or dig for buried treasure. Discover what it takes to become one of the most famous pirates in history!

System Requirements

    Minimum: Windows® 98/Me/2000/XP, Pentium® 1.0 GHz or higher, 256 MB RAM, 1.2 GB Free HDD, 64 MB video card* with Hardware T&L support, Windows® 98/Me/2000/XP-compatible sound card*, DirectX® version 9.0b (included) or higher
    * Indicates device should be compatible with DirectX® version 9.0b or higher.
Customer reviews
Customer Review system updated! Learn more
Recent:
Very Positive (50 reviews)
Overall:
Very Positive (1,513 reviews)
Recently Posted
Kill-Cam Celebrity
( 9.2 hrs on record )
Posted: May 4
No other game stole so many hours of my childhood. Well, maybe Rollercoaster Tycoon Gold, but that's besides the point! This timeless open-world sand-- er, waterbox-- gives you a ship and wishes you well, then reels in the anchors to let you do whatever the hell you want. Sure, you could be a hero and save your family from slavery at the hands of an evil and abusive Marquis, but... why would you? There's only so much time in your simulated pirate life, time that could be used to board Spanish trade galleons, to sack cities, to find ancient Incan ruins, to deliver ultimatums, to conquer all in the name of the Dutch, to beat up drunk tavern regulars, to buy treasure maps and moustaches from Sid Meier in the back corner of the tavern, to marry sixteen governors' daughters through your ballroom dancing swagger, to do whatever the hell you want!

YAR HAR DIDDLY DEE, BEING A PIRATE IS ALRIGHT TO BE, DO WHAT YOU WANT CAUSE A PIRATE IS FREE, YOU ARE A PIRATE!
Helpful? Yes No Funny
nsselchow
( 25.3 hrs on record )
Posted: May 3
it kicks booty
Helpful? Yes No Funny
KarmaticCones
( 1.4 hrs on record )
Posted: May 3
Got this game on the cheap as a part of an awesome Humble Bundle. I remember playing this game on my GameCube ages ago and I still love it today. This game was so good it inspired similar games such as Windward, and other games that are almost direct clones. The fact that this game was worth imitating is evidence enough that you should play it!
Helpful? Yes No Funny
dark crusade
( 32.2 hrs on record )
Posted: May 2
I find open world dogs really addictive and this game is one of them
However if you could do more you can't do that much with your wife once you are married
8/10
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Jed
( 7.5 hrs on record )
Posted: May 2
I wait patiently for the sequel
Helpful? Yes No Funny
CommunistMoonBaseLeader
( 28.7 hrs on record )
Posted: May 1
Such a fun and addicting game, try starting in the 1600's with the Dutch, and capture all the major cities in the name of the Dutch.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Prince Charming
( 0.8 hrs on record )
Posted: April 30
Frame rate was too low to play.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
gizmoztapz
( 0.3 hrs on record )
Posted: April 29
will not load
Helpful? Yes No Funny
mthomasbradley
( 579.0 hrs on record )
Posted: April 29
There's so much to like. I've spent hundreds of hours on this game. All the other pirate games fall short; this is the gold standard. It's a must have for any gamer of any level. It's terribly addictive and fun.

Sid, please give us an update to this almost perfect game!

I'd like to see the map expanded a bit to include more opportunities in America, a few more mini-games and side missions, and maybe a game ending mission after you've played a perfect pirate and ready to retire. But don't change much; the gameplay is outstanding, the storyline is great, the attention to detail unmatched.

Sid Meier's Pirates just might be the most entertaining game I've ever played.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
rcogren
( 61.5 hrs on record )
Posted: April 28
Fun!....for awhile then gets boring fast!
Helpful? Yes No Funny
The Alchemist
( 9.0 hrs on record )
Posted: April 28
I had forgotten all bout this game until I saw it on sale and all the hours I put into it when I was in middle school came back and it is exactly as good as it was then. This game is worth so much more than it costs
Helpful? Yes No Funny
(Bazinga) Sharkattack
( 12.0 hrs on record )
Posted: April 24
Childhood game I loved this so much when fighting on the ship and in the traven!
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Jynx
( 7.6 hrs on record )
Posted: April 22
If Edward Kenway and Jack sparrow had a baby, then that baby married Errol Flynn and had another baby, then Sid Meier rasied that baby, you pretty much have this game.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Professor Wolverine
( 29.9 hrs on record )
Posted: April 19
I have been playing this game since 2005, I give it a five star rating.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Remorseless
( 4.3 hrs on record )
Posted: April 19
poor remake
Helpful? Yes No Funny
stekolla
( 23.2 hrs on record )
Posted: April 16
Fantastic
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Terry The Tiger
( 11.9 hrs on record )
Posted: April 16
Really fun game but can get a bit repetitive after a while.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
racer999
( 3.0 hrs on record )
Posted: April 16
This game never gets old! I've played through the game countless times to the point that my CD of the game was ruined. Now with a digital copy the fun can go on! Aarrrgh!
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Probes eater of the downys
( 4.2 hrs on record )
Posted: April 16
i am the pirate cook
Helpful? Yes No Funny
SCARRIOR - Blut Und Eisen-
( 11.7 hrs on record )
Posted: April 13
Loved playing this game as a kid, even now it is a truly amazing game and is so fun.

The soundtracks are amazing as well such as the British Grenadiers styled as a carribean island tune,

This game i can not really put into perspective in a review, the game itself is very defined in nature from the moment you start playing and wiping the floor of the spanish galleons and treasure ships on the brazillian to mexican coast.

The game at the time was a 10/10 and today would constitute as an 8/10

Helpful? Yes No Funny
Most Helpful Reviews  In the past 30 days
2 of 3 people (67%) found this review helpful
Recommended
29.9 hrs on record
Posted: April 19
I have been playing this game since 2005, I give it a five star rating.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
1 of 2 people (50%) found this review helpful
Recommended
11.9 hrs on record
Posted: April 16
Really fun game but can get a bit repetitive after a while.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
1 of 2 people (50%) found this review helpful
Recommended
579.0 hrs on record
Posted: April 29
There's so much to like. I've spent hundreds of hours on this game. All the other pirate games fall short; this is the gold standard. It's a must have for any gamer of any level. It's terribly addictive and fun.

Sid, please give us an update to this almost perfect game!

I'd like to see the map expanded a bit to include more opportunities in America, a few more mini-games and side missions, and maybe a game ending mission after you've played a perfect pirate and ready to retire. But don't change much; the gameplay is outstanding, the storyline is great, the attention to detail unmatched.

Sid Meier's Pirates just might be the most entertaining game I've ever played.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
Most Helpful Reviews  In the past 90 days
1 of 2 people (50%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
Recommended
16.2 hrs on record
Posted: February 11
This game is really good, I played it a little while ago, I really enjoyed the concept of going around the word and just roaming, killing, and dancing with girls. A real fun game to play, I would highly suggest you play, if your a fan of sid meier's games.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
1 of 2 people (50%) found this review helpful
Recommended
11.3 hrs on record
Posted: February 20
Classic sid meier game, spent many an hour on the amiga version and the orignal pc version. This is basically the same with updated graphics
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
1 of 2 people (50%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
Recommended
11.4 hrs on record
Posted: March 8
Awesome game is awesome. In fact, I feel like a pirate right now! Arrrrr.

I come strapped with six pistols and a dagger
Walk under the black flag with a scallywag swagger!
Ain't no parrot on my shoulder and no rings in my ear
I'm an irate pirate, real swashbuckling buccaneer!
Beef with me? Please! I'm the high seas Caesar!
My cold heart is many degrees beneath the deep freezer!
You're an obese greasy sleaze squeezing a diseased peter
That no skeezer would touch if she had fifty foot tweezers!
Don't start a war with me! You're not hard core!
I'll pimp-slap those face scars of yours, port and starboard!
You spent time in Alcatraz, I'm sure you were fine
If you dropped the soap as little as you drop dope rhymes!

- Blackbeard, Epic Rap Battles of History
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
1 of 2 people (50%) found this review helpful
Recommended
68.3 hrs on record
Posted: March 9
One of the few games that could truly be branded open world. Lives well beyons it's age, and one of my favorite games ever.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
1 of 2 people (50%) found this review helpful
Recommended
5.1 hrs on record
Posted: March 14
Pirates is a fun game, become a pirate and sink ships and kill people, sale your cargo, marry a hot governors daughter.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
1 of 2 people (50%) found this review helpful
Recommended
4.1 hrs on record
Posted: March 24
Arrrrrr

also the wind hates you and will strategically blow against you at every turn
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
2 of 4 people (50%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
Recommended
10.0 hrs on record
Posted: February 11
Like Skyrim with ships

11knots/10 IGN
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
2 of 4 people (50%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
Recommended
3.3 hrs on record
Posted: March 2
> Ate the Gum-gum fruit
> Decided to travel to become the King of Pirates
> Recruited some people
> Samurai dude with 3 swords
> Navigator chick with huge jello mold
> ( ͡° ͜ʖ ͡°)
> Pinocchio look-alike
> Guy with a weird eyebrow
> Named the crew Straw-Hat Pirates

wait
wrong story
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
1 of 2 people (50%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
Recommended
3.1 hrs on record
Posted: March 5
Quiddle diddle this game is the Fiddle
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
1 of 2 people (50%) found this review helpful
Recommended
6.9 hrs on record
Posted: March 8
If you love pirates and Sid Meier, than this is the game for you!

It's a nice time-killer that doesn't need internet connection. The story line isn't the best but it doesn't take to much away from your overall experience. It also has loads of re-playable value.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
1 of 2 people (50%) found this review helpful
Recommended
18.6 hrs on record
Posted: March 21
This game has a very special place in my heart. I grew up playing the NES version for hours and hours, and I imagine I'll be playing this version in much the same way. While this 'new' version is well over ten years old it's still such a wonderful and exciting game that only a pirate game of the highest caliber would be able to take it's position as Admiral of the fleet.

What makes this such an incredible game is the sandbox aspect of it. The player can really pursue just about any path that pleases them. Would you like to honor your selected nation by protecting its cities from invasion, boosting its economy by plundering other nations trade goods, and making the seas a place feared for anyone that doesn't fly your flag? You can. Would you like to cast all allegiance aside and plunder the nations of their gold and goods? Go to it. Want to become a master dancer, have a wife in each corner of the map, and become the Romeo of the high seas? Your ship awaits. If you want to create a massive fleet of warships and attack towns you can do that as well. Sid Meier's Pirates is truly one of the most incredible sandbox experiences available, incredibly replayable, fun, fast, engaging, and the best pirate game available.

Highest recommendations for anyone that enjoys this period of history, pirates, nautical adventures, and ballroom dancing.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
2 of 4 people (50%) found this review helpful
2 people found this review funny
Recommended
74.2 hrs on record
Posted: March 28
Sid Meier's Pirates is not only an interesting exploration into the world of necromancy but also an engaging PSA about recycling.

The game is continuously stuck in some sort of tutorial mode from the first to third difficulty where it punishes you for trying to make the game harder by stealing all of your gold. As soon as you hit Swashbuckler however the game becomes a torment where everything from wind, your crew and even your family hates your guts and wishes to destroy you.

The final difficulty however isn't even mentioned by most players who can give you hundreds of strategies for Swashbuckler but not a single for Rogue. It really is just better to forget that this difficulty even exists. It will test your limits as it rips every shred of humanity from you until you're either begging for mercy or some kind of robotic killing machine of the colonial seas. No matter how good you are on Rogue the swordfight with the final boss in his fortress has been designed as a testing protocol for T-800 units instead of being a game for actual human beings to complete.

Oh and good luck with the dancing minigame.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
Most Helpful Reviews  In the past 180 days
240 of 257 people (93%) found this review helpful
175 people found this review funny
Recommended
3.3 hrs on record
Posted: December 28, 2015
This is the best Pirate RPG I've had the pleasure of playing, and it's amazing in how it fools you desperately. You have this sort of "drive" to get a VERY good ship. So naturally, "Size Matters" kick in. You take your ♥♥♥♥♥♥ sloop, attack a ♥♥♥♥♥♥ galleas and voila you think! Your ship can now house 32 cannons with a 200 man crew (I believe.) So you take your Galleas, you name it something like "Josephine" and drive it around. You keep your sloop with you or discard it, perhaps even sell it and you feel like Captain Jack Freaking Sparrow. Then you go into a tavern and the lovely barmaid informs you that there's a War Frigate out to kill ya, so you capture that. You now have 50 cannons, possible 400 crew, cargo hold of 128 ton and feel invincible. Then you drive your ship around and feel like the King of the World. That's how it usually is, and seems to be how most people play this game.

It's the wrong way. You start out, you take your Sloop and find a War Canoe. They can be found amongst the savage natives of the Caribbean. You board it with your sloop and acquire it. The next thing you do is to go into town and sell your cannons and your sloop. And everything that's not food. You wont be needing it. You have your War Canoe. You then go to the tavern and recruit the 48 people wanting to join you. Voila, full crew. And you have your War Canoe. The War Canoe is in fact the best ship in the entire game. "But Sir, what about when the English deploy a Ship of the Line to take me out?" You board it. They shoot at you? Well guess what, I hope your Mother taught you how to weave, for you'll be weaving your way around the cannonfire into the Ship. You board it at once the fight starts. If it's too much for you or you take a hit or two, you're in the fastest ship in the game. Turn around, sail away. Nothing can catch up to you. Oh no you wont have cannons, who needs it? Sugar, spice, goods? With your crew of 50 whatever you plunder from the ships in gold is way more than what you'd normally be due. You take your War Canoe, which you'll name something like "Arrow" or "Emma" and ram that thing into whatever comes your way. It's the best ship. Here's why:

-You can bypass ship battles. This means more gold for you. And I personally found them tedious
-Boarding is more manly
-Your ship is the fastest in the game. Get a quest to escort a Governor from Mexico to Florida? Takes you 4 minutes.
-Hunting some ♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥ that keeps your family hostage? Like hell he can outsail you.
-Smaller Crew means fewer mouths to feed, and more gold for you when you divide the plunder.
-With a big ship, you'll either shoot something dead while taking damage or see them board you without difficulty. Why be the prey?

10/10 game would make my own War Canoe.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
251 of 298 people (84%) found this review helpful
299 people found this review funny
Recommended
7.8 hrs on record
Posted: December 28, 2015
Yar Har Fiddley Dee
Betray your country and sail on the sea!
Kill off your crew, earn a heftier fee
you are a Pirate!
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
99 of 109 people (91%) found this review helpful
57 people found this review funny
Recommended
7.0 hrs on record
Posted: December 5, 2015
I had this game as a kid and, unfortunately, haven't played it in years.
It's still the best pirate game I have ever played.

Maybe one of these days I'll actually rescue my family, but eh.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
16 of 17 people (94%) found this review helpful
3 people found this review funny
Recommended
3.2 hrs on record
Posted: December 28, 2015
Full Disclosure: Used to play this game back in its hey-day long before its Steam release. Bought it again during a previous sale just to reminisce, and its just as good as it was back then.

One of the classics of Sid Meier's earlier days, brought forward to 2005, as whimsical and as rewarding as it was back then as it is now, only hampered by lack of more modern-day support features like widescreen, stability on more modern OS's, etc.

+ Colorful, light-hearted portrayal of the Golden Age of Piracy, with art direction that holds up to today, 2005-era warts and all.
+ Still-unique controls (using the numpad keys) make it one of the more unusual yet easiest to approach and play games to date. You can play this entire game one-handed if you wish.
+ A truly open seas adventure, with only the barest of poking about the overarching story involving revenge and skullduggery. Combine this freedom with solid sea battle mechanics, sword combat, and dancing to impress the local governor's daughter and you've got something unique every run.
+ In classic Sid Meier's style, many options to set player difficulty, including the option to "ante up" at each "dividing the loot" point after ever expedition with a crew.
+ Yar har fiddle de dee you are a pirate~!

- 2005 warts and all. No widescreen support. Lack of modern OS support (with some display issues on Win7 machines). May want to play this in a window and set your expectations of graphical fidelity properly.
- Bit of a conundrum if you do not own a keyboard with a numpad.
- Some would argue that the seas battle mechanics are a bit shallow, the sword combat can be difficult to get into, and the dancing is nigh impossible.
- In classic Sid Meier's style, game can be haphazard in difficulty gaps between the given difficulties.
- Not a ninja. Or a wizard. In space.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
20 of 25 people (80%) found this review helpful
2 people found this review funny
Recommended
8.7 hrs on record
Posted: December 28, 2015
Good Game, Should remake this game for next gen
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny