Honestly….who doesn’t want to be a pirate?  Sailing on the open sea, plundering treasure, throwing traitors overboard and let’s not forget having a peg leg or eye patch!  You can even have your very own exotic pet!  Monkey, parrot, jaguar, giraffe, anybody??  Pirates are a great theme for board games.  Everyone can relate to them, whether they have read books or watched movies.  And face it we have all wanted to search for “One Eyed” Willies’ treasure (remember the movie Goonies!).  So let’s hoist our sails, pour some grog and hunt some booty (the treasure kind) in my…..

Best 3 Games with…Pirates!

3.  Libertalia

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Libertalia is a great take on the pirate game.  You are all competing pirates wanting to divy up treasure and see who becomes the most wealthy. This one is all about the money! Every one has the exact same cards in their decks that do the exact same actions. It just depends on when they activate or who gets to activate them first. There are two phases to each round, day and night. Night is when you choose your treasures.  Libertalia really gets you going.  There is a lot of traitors, deceit and cunning involved.  The decision when to play what card is crucial to doing well in this game.

2.  Booty! (2015)

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Booty is a small but mighty game!  I am surprised that not many people have shown much interest in this game. Grant bought this on a whim in late 2015 and I absolutely love it.  You play as Pirates who are hired by a Quartermaster to gather some bounty.  When the job is done, each round, the quartermaster then divides the treasure up for all the pirates to fight over. Each card represents different things. Gold is just victory points, swords allow you to take over part of various islands, artifacts are set collecting but you don’t want more than one. The best part of the whole game is being the Quartermaster and trying to decide how to split up the booty in order to place yourself in the lead. Trying to either get people to take junk that nobody wants but put something with it making it more enticing. Booty is a really great game with very hard decisions.

1.  Merchants and Marauders

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I think we all knew this game was going to be number 1.  Merchants and Marauders is a sandbox game. Sandbox means there are no real restrictions and you pretty much do what ever you want.  If you want to be a good guy…..be a merchant.  Selling and buying goods from one port to another. If you want to be a pirate that attacks merchant ships then do that as well.  If you want to do both…do both. The thing that makes this game great is that it almost forces you to eventually be a pirate. You may start out the game planning on being a goody two-shoes but by the end of it, you are buckle deep in piracy!  This is a great game that let’s your pirate imagination run wild, upgrading your ships, putting enhancements on them such as better cannon, more cargo space, chasing tall tales and rumors of yesteryear and collecting treasures.

– Tim