Pirates is an application on Facebook, developed by GreenRobot LLC which has a vast number of installs (1,000,000+) but there are many people who don't understand the game fully. 
This guide is an attempt to aid those people seeking to understand the mechanics of the game 
as well as the basics of playing. 


1) Players must play the game fairly and honestly, 
not engaging in any syndicate play or the use of automated tools. 

(2) Any player movements can be logged at any time to verify their play patterns. 

(3) Where a playing pattern may be deeemed as unusual, 
the "captcha" function can be implemented for this player 
for an undetermined amount of time to verfiy their playing of the game fairly. 

(4) Playing as a syndicate is not allowed within the game; 
the definition of syndicate would be any players who are amassing benefits 
and passing these on to other players 
in a pattern determined to be consistent by the Developers. 

(5) The Developers reserve the right to remove levels, coins, cannons, 
hull, and sails for any player determined to have broken the rules. 
Players will normally be given 24 hours to justify their play patterns 
before any action is taken although this is not a requirement in all cases. 

(6) Developers reserve the right to ban any player 
found to have broken any of the rules. 

(7) Playing patterns unexplicably changing during any monitoring, 
which is not to the satisfaction of the Developers, 
will be deemed as breaking the rules of the game. 

(8) Players are allowed to "gift" other players with their coins 
through bombing in the event of, for example retiring from the game, 
providing this does not materially affect their position within the game 
(materially in this definition will be determined by the Developers). 

(9) Players are not allowed to spam the game or other players 
and must treat all other players with respect while posting messages. 

(10) The Developers reserve the right to change the rules at any point 
without giving notice. 

The Pirate Code: 

1. Be Kind to one another while posting on the message boards. 
No spamming please. Do some research and see what's been said before posting. 

2. The leaderboard is there to recognize what INDIVIDUALS have earned. 
Players who manipulate the game with bots, scripts, syndicates, multiple accounts, 
hacks or code cheats will quickly get identified, tracked, warned, 
penalized and then ultimately banned. 


BASICS: Initially after installing the application, you will start by choosing who introduced 
you to the application. 
If you choose someone, you will join their pirate faction. 
If no-one introduced you to Pirates and you selected it as so, 
you will be given the choice to be any of the 3 factions. 

ARRR: You do not get the option to choose who invited you if 
you installed the application from a direct invitation. 
Choosing a friend as introducing you to the game, even if they didn't, 
will benefit them with an extra level and you will be the same faction as them. 
You may also receive a level. 


There are 3 types of pirate factions: The Barbary, The Buccaneers and the Corsairs. 



There is no difference between any of the factions 

except for the fact that the ships look different. 

All factions can talk to each in the tavern. Previously there was a different board for each faction.

When you start out, your level will be at 0. 
There is no maximum level and you will continue to level up as you keep playing. 
Your level is what determines your Hit Points (HP), which is equivalent to your health. 
There are several ways to level up: 

a: Surviving a storm at sea without the use of a sextant (random chance). 
b: Bombing someone on your friends list. 
c: Setting up a dynamite trap (which is set off) on a Deserted Island. 
d: Purchasing a level by trading items and coins. 
e: Recruiting a friend to install the application. 

ARRR: When you pass level 100, bombing and setting up a dynamite trap 
are no longer 100% guaranteed to work. 
As you get higher in level (past 100) the chances of these methods 
succeeding become less and less. 

USEFUL TIP: Do not trade for levels while you are under level 100. 
Level up through the other methods of the game and 
save your booty items for when you need it, 
when bombing and dynamite methods are no longer working. 


Your HP is equivalent to your health and is equal to your level. 
This means you will start off with 0 HP. You cannot engage in a battle at sea, 
known as Pirate Vs Pirate (PvP) Battle, when your HP is 0. 
Storms do damage based on 25% of your health, should you come across them. 
Because of this, your HP will not be affected by storms until you reach level 4-5 
and it will only do 1 damage anyway (25% of 4) 
(but your Pirate faction will be affected) 
There are several ways to heal your HP back up: 
• Hire wenches at the Tavern. 
• Eat ham from your Booty. 
• You heal 50 HP every hour. 
Different storms do differing amounts of damage. 


You’ll notice on the Main Index screen that there are shortcut links at the bottom.

These are: 

• Exploring Enemy waters - Sail into dangerous waters with Live PvP attacks 

 & Enemy towns & Quests. 

• Sail away from enemy - Sail in safe waters with only islands with minimal coins 

 and Merchant Ships. 

• Dig up – Brings you to a screen that allows you to retrieve your buried coins. 

• Eating ham – Brings you to the Ham description page, allowing you heal yourself. 

• Recruit friends – Brings you the “Recruit Friends” page. 

• View your stats – Brings you the “Stats” page. 



The Options Bar is highly important in your navigation of the seas 

and it is probably best you get accustomed to its uses before you start sailing. 

Most options are self-explanatory. 

The tabs on the Options Bar are as follows: 

• Go Sailin’ 

• Recruit Friends 

• Stats 

• Booty 

• Leaderboard 

• My Mates 

• Free Booty 

• Settings 

• About 


Brings you to the Main Index 

Allows you invite other friends to play Pirates and earn you a level up if they install it. 
ARRR: When you recruit people on your friends list, they do not become your crew members. 
They are just fellow players of the Pirates application. 
To hire crew members and increase your crew you must purchase them at the Harbour Shipyard. 


Displays all of your ship information, your wins in Parrot & Monkey races, 
as well as some of your battle history ( who you have been fighting), 
your Booty & your Friends. 

When you click on "STATS" in your Options Bar this is the window you will be presented with: 


These are your General Stats, all the upgrades you have bought for your ship, 
the number of crew you have, your cannons, sails and hull are all shown. 
As well, any monkey or parrot races you have won 
and how much you have won are also shown here. 

Each TAB that you click on will take you to another page of YOUR STATS. 
The Second TAB (Fighting) of your Stats shows your PvP attacks. 


This screen shows both who you have attacked in PvP, 

and also who has attacked you, with the results of the PvP. 

You can click on the person in the PvP screen & look at their stats, 

You can also send them a message to their own board. 

Or maybe they will send a message to your board. 


Displays a list of all the items you have found on your journeys and carry onboard. 


You can click on these items to find out their descriptions and use some of them. 

For Either the Ham or the Rum, you just click on them and then click the button to use them. 



ARRR: Many of the item descriptions are inaccurate and you would be better off reading this guide to understand what each item does. Most Booty can also be sold at the Trading Post. 


Coins allow you to purchase ship upgrades, items and levels. 

Also, the more coins you have buried, the higher you rise on the Leaderboard. 

Message in a Bottle: 

Messages in Bottles are traded in the Market at Harbour toward a level upgrade. 

Gold Bar: 

Gold Bars are traded in the Market at Harbour toward a level upgrade. 

Pirate Flag: 

Pirate Flags can be traded in the Market at Harbour toward a level upgrade. 

Bomb: Bombs are used to steal unburied coins onboard friend's ship, coins from Landlubbers, 

and coins from Anonymous Pirates. 

You may also earn a level up. 


Required to setup a trap on a Deserted Island to steal some of your friend's Booty list items. 

Traps may also be set against Landlubbers to gain coins. 

You may also gain a level from Traps. 

Dynamite is also used on Quests. 


Required to setup a trap on a Deserted Island to steal some of your friend's Booty list items (see Dynamite above). Monkeys can also be raced in the Tavern. 


If you have any in your Booty, one is automatically used to prevent damage from storms. 


Drink Rum to refresh your crew to sail another 50 miles further when you reach the sailing limit. 


Eat Ham to heal your HP by 25% of your level. 

Treasure Map: 

Treasure Maps are used to go on Quests to find the Sea Monster and retreive booty. 


Parrots are used with Dynamite to fight the Sea Monster. 

Parrots can also be raced in the Tavern. 


Pistols are used to trade towards Level Upgrades once you pass level 300. 


Swords are used to trade towards Level Upgrades once you pass level 300. 

ARRR: Though sextants prevent you from receiving damage from storms, they also prevent you 

from gaining experience (by sailing through and surviving a storm without a sextant) 

and thus leveling up. 


Displays a list of your recruits and friends, who play Pirates. 

Unlike the Leaderboard, this only displays people on your friends list 

to see how you rank amongst them. There are two sections here. 

Recruited By (your name here). 

Pirate Friends of (your name here). 

The first section shows you the statistics of only your recruits 

(people you invited to install the application). 

The second section displays all your friends who have Pirates installed. 

It also gives you the Link to send to your friends to invite them to Join Pirates. 


Whether you click on the "My Mates Tab" or the "Stats Tab", the picture above shows what you will see. 

You can click on your friends to see their stats also. 

If you invite your friends and they accept, you get a free level. 

You also get a free level for any friends that they later invite. 


Displays a pirate roster listing the pirates with the highest statistics 
right down to the newest & lowest Pirate on the list. 


Displays a pirate roster listing the pirates with the highest statistics 

right down to the newest & lowest Pirate on the list. 


You will be able to check the statistics of the top pirates here. 

You can sort out how you view the top pirates by seeing how they rate overall 

(buried coins x level) or in terms of coins or levels specifically. 

Also you can click on the links on the left-hand side to see how they compare against 

their own faction instead of against the entire crop of pirates. 

ARRR: Not everyone on the Leaderboard has earned their place legitimately. 

Some on there have cheated to get there. 

Cheaters are those who who use, or have used and have used automated bot programs, 

script programs, game mechanic / game exploits, syndicate playing for unfair gain. 

If you find a glitch that leads to unfair gain, please report it and please do not exploit it. 

As well, large gifts of coins are not acceptable under The Pirate Code, which specifically says 

"The leaderboard is there to recognize what INDIVIDUALS have earned", large gifts are NOT earned! 


The weekly leaderboard can help you see what you have achieved. 

The stats for both boards are in real time. 

You can click on the links on the left side to see where you stand in Coins, 

Miles, and Levels during the week. 

Give yourself a goal each week and see if you can meet it! 


The stats on all these pages can change at any moment, depending upon coins earned, coins spent, 

other people's earnings etc. 

There is also a wall for you to post messages to other pirates. 


Take a marketing survey to earn diamonds.
This survey is not available in all countries. It is available for the US, 
as well as the UK and Canada. There may be more countries. 

Those who do not have access to it do not need to worry about it. You can also now buy diamonds directly.


When at the Main Index you will notice the sailing options displayed on the left side and the right side. 



Generally every right side action you take moves you 1 mile away from the harbour. 

There is a limit to how far you can travel from Harbour. 

For new players with Level 0 sails, this limit is 75 miles. 

When you reach the limit, you will come across a page indicating that.



Rum will only deduct 50 miles away from your sailed distance. 

Wenches cost are proportional to crew members and with 15 crew, 

only cost 52 coins and also carry the extra benefit of resetting your miles to 0 

and completely restoring your HP to your level. 

You can return to the Harbour at any point, on the sailing page, clicking the left side returns you immediately to harbour (one move no matter how many miles you 

are out at sea). 

If you choose to return to the harbour, from the sailing limit page, unless you 

visit the Brothel or Eat Ham while in harbour, when you set sail again, 

you are taken back to the spot you left. 


The weather is important because it is the only way of changing factions 

and violent weather such as hurricanes and storms do damage to your ship 



As you play the game, you'll notice the set of weather patterns as shown above. 

When the grey clouds appear, you must be cautious. Grey clouds are a sure sign that 

bad weather could be ahead. Sometimes the grey clouds turn into storms, 

sometimes into hurricanes and sometimes the weather just returns to normal. 

Hurricanes do up to 25% (Level) damage to your HP 

and Storms do up to 15%. So as you level up, you will notice the storms get 

stronger and stronger in numerical damage. 

ARRR: Storms only occur out on sea. Approach land when the clouds are grey and you will be safe. 


Level 1 experience 0 damage from storms [1 x 25% = 0.25] 

Level 4 experience 1 damage (maximum) from storms [4 x 25% = 1] 

Level 10 experience 2-3 damage (maximum) from storms [10 x 25% = 2.5] 

Level 120 experience 30 damage (maximum) from storms [120 x 25% = 30] 

Level 1200 experience 300 damage (maximum) from storms [1200 x 25% = 300] 

So with full health, it will take 4-5 storms to drop your ship to 0 HP, without healing. 

ARRR: Ham heals you for 25% of your health. Wenches completely heal you. Every hour your crew fixes your ship by 50 HP. 


This is a random occurrence. Occasionally you will hit storms and you 

will be notified that you survived the storm and have gained from this experience 

and leveled up. To have this occur, you must not have any sextants onboard to help 

you survive the storm. Other than that, there is nothing else you can do to 

affect the outcome of whether you level up or not from a storm. 

When you first start off, however, you are more likely to gain experience and level up 

from a storm but the chances of it happening get less as you level up. 


To change factions you must utilise storms to your benefit. 

To change factions you must be hit by a storm that will shipwreck you. 

This means you must be hit by a storm that will bring you to negative HP (theoretically). 

You may just sail the seas hoping to continually hit storms to knock off 

your HP to 0 and then be hit by a final storm. 

When you have been hit by a storm when your HP was 0, you become shipwrecked. 

Instantaneously, another faction ship will come and assist you and thus change your faction. 

Barbary and Buccaneers are the easiest faction to become. 

They have a higher probability of helping those who are shipwrecked. 

Some people have gone continuously changing between the two sides when 

attempting to become a Corsair. 

Corsairs are less likely to help you and so occasionally it requires many shipwrecks 

to become a Corsair pirate. You may be lucky though. 


Remember after you change Factions to EAT HAM otherwise the next storm 

that comes along will cause you to change factions again. 


This was done intentionally by the developers to even the playing numbers 

since the Corsairs outnumber the other two factions. 

Copied up to Change Factions