Windows Phone Game Review: Pirate Tales
Pirate Tales is an entertaining, simple game for your Windows Phone. You play the role of the pirate captain and must defeat various naval forces as you work your way across the Caribbean. The multi-level game has you battling fleets from Spain, Great Britain, and other countries. You plunder gold from your victories to improve your ship with upgraded cannons, armor, additional pirates, and sailing performance upgrades.
Pirate Tales is a nicely animated, entertaining game for your Windows Phone. In many ways it comes across as an abridged version of Sid Meier's Pirates. Pirate Tales lacks that bar maidens but covers the high seas battles nicely.
Pirate Tales' main menu offers options to jump into the game, access the game's settings, view the leaderboard (Scoreloop supported) and view the game's credits. Settings are basic and cover sound/music on or off, setting your Scoreloop profile and resetting the game.
There are ten levels to Pirate Tales and before each level you have a short story behind the battle you are facing. Fortunately you can tap the X mark to exit the storyboard and jump right into the action. The game screen has your vital statistics up top (score, cannons, sailors, and hull status). The button to fire your ships cannons sits in the bottom right corner of the screen. Just tap and hold to fire your cannons, the longer you hold the more cannons fire (just remember it takes time for your pirate crew to reload).
The object to Pirate Tales is simple. Blow the other ships out of the water before they do the same to you. Navigating your pirate ship is also simple. Just tap the screen in the direction you want the ship to sail. Enemy ships will slowly sail in your direction and after you defeat the smaller ships, a larger galleon will appear (a boss ship if you will) that you have to sink.
If you get tired of shooting your cannons, if you sail into an enemy ship your pirate crew will board and attack the enemy ship. Obviously the larger your crew, the better the odds of a victory. It's best to weaken up the enemy ship with your cannons and then attack them with your pirates.
Once all ships are sunk (except yours of course) your score screen appears and all the gold you've plundered is tallied. You can use the gold to upgrade your ship (more armor, cannons, various performance upgrades) or hire more pirates.
As you progress through the levels, the competition gets more intense. Overall game play is alright but nothing that will knock your socks off. Graphics are nice, controls easy and Pirate Tales is a decent game to pass short bits of time with. Your progress is saved (unless you choose to reset the game) to let you start back where you left off. All in all, Pirate Tales is a decent little high sea battle game for your Windows Phone.
There is a free, ad supported version of Pirate Tales but the ad banner takes up a good amount of real estate on the screen. The free version is good enough to give you a feel for the game but that pesky ad banner kept getting in the way. The ad-free version, Pirate Tales Pro, will run you $.99 to give you the full screen to battle on.
Update: An update was pushed out for Pirate Tales Pro yesterday. Not sure what caused this but if you update the game or buy the game from the Marketplace it is the ad supported version. We've sent an email out to the developer and hopefully it's just an issue of getting the updates crossed up. Hopefully the Pro version will be fixed and the ad banners removed in the next day or so.