Over the last handful of years or so I’ve gotten a bit pessimistic when I see anything free-to-play. Normally there’s paywalls that hit you over and over or the game offers a pay-to-win structure. Neither fun in any way. However, sometimes free-to-play sinks those comments and instead shows us why this model can work. Floating in is Pirates Gulf.
From the first couple seconds into Pirates Gulf, I knew that I was playing something special here. The gameplay itself is one hundred-percent action that has you carefully timing and shooting cannons balls at an enemy pirate ship. This enemy ship just so happens to be doing the same thing back at you…and it’s another real player.
In order to aim, you’ll aim the horizontal shot of the cannon by rotating the left side wheel and you’ll change the distance via turning the right hand wheel. This control method is top notch where it’s difficult but you’ll get the grasp of it and it will become sending nature.Te control scheme is a very solid effort and something that I really don’t see how it could be improved on in any way.
Pirates Gulf is a real-time game and you will be playing against real players. Here’s the catch though: if you’re good at it, apparently I am, you’ll be able to win round after round. This means more currency for you as well as unlocking more upgrades. I spent the last few days playing and I actually have more currency then I know what to do with. And that’s normally not a problem that I have with free-to-play titles!
The tier upgrade scheme is what has me addicted. I really want to level up in order to unlock new ship parts. But, if for some reason you need more than that then there’s also a ranking tier that you can always compete in.
Last but not least, the overall presentation is very charming. The soundtrack and graphics include a cartoony pirate theme that’s well executed. Every ship has a bit of customization so there’s always that as well.
The Bottom Line: Pirates Gulf is a massively fun online action game that just gets everything right.