Toy Pirates is a naval combat game for our Windows Phones that has you controlling a small pirate ship that must navigate the high seas and battle an assortment of enemy ships. Sounds simple, right?
Well the twist comes in the form of a floating maze that you have to sail through to get to your enemy. Canon shots can ricochet off the walls, which can be rather hazardous, and charges can be set to blast the walls into tiny little pieces. There is a bit of strategy involved with game play and overall Toy Pirates is a decent game for our Windows Phones. However, while entertaining, I couldn't help but think something was missing.
Toy Pirates has three gaming modes to help keep things interesting. You have a multi-level Campaign Mode where you the faster you take out you take out your enemy ships, the higher the score, a Survival Mode where you have to outlast wave after wave of enemy ships, and the Time Attack Mode where you not only battle enemy ships but also the clock.
Additionally, you have a Level Designer feature where you can create your own battle arena, share your creations with others and download the challenges other players have created.
Regardless of the game mode, game play is consistent throughout Toy Pirates. Your ship is placed in a maze that is floating out in the ocean an you must take out your enemy before they take you out. Game options are accessible from the main menu and cover the customary game sounds/music levels, your ship controls and the option to establish your Pirate name.
You have two options for ship controls, an on-screen directional pad or touch controls. Touch controls allow you to touch the screen in general to steer the ship. The downside to the touch control option is that your finger tends to drift towards the ad banners. With the directional pad your touch is anchored and your finger doesn't stray as much.
Firing controls are found in the bottom right corner of the screen. Canons are fired from the sides of the ship, so you'll need to be broadside of your target before firing. Shots can be ricocheted off the walls allowing you to take somewhat indirect shots at your target. Just be careful you don't sink your own ship by your own ricochet.
Your ship is equipped with three canons (noted by the three canon balls above the fire control) that can fire multiple times but it takes a few seconds for your crew to reload them. In the Campaign Mode, one hit will sink your ship so you'll need to seek cover behind a wall or keep moving so you won't become an easy target while reloading. In the Survival and Time Attack Modes your ship can withstand multiple hits before going down.
Additionally you have floating charges you can set (the barrel icon) in the water. If you place them next to a barricade (dark brown section of the wall) and shoot it with your canons it will blow the barricade to shreds. You can then sail on to destroy your enemy or ambush them as they sail through the opening.
You also have the added pressure of a game clock that slowly depletes your score. The quicker you sink all the enemy ships, the higher the score. Should the timer bring your score to zero, you fail that level.
The Level Designer is fairly straight forward allowing you to build the full range of walls and add as many enemy ships as you'd like. You can test out your level as you build it and when all is said and done, save it for your personal use or share it amongst other Toy Pirates players.
Toy Pirates does have a certain amount of appeal. However, it did feel it was missing that draw that keeps you coming back for more. I don't know if it was how easy your ship sinks in the Campaign Mode or that you couldn't upgrade your ship to give it more firepower or armor. Maybe if you could plunder the sunken ships for coins that could be used to upgrade your ship would give the game a little more draw.
Still, as is, Toy Pirates isn't a bad game for your Windows Phone. It is an entertaining, casual game but may not have the staying power for some and may be better suited for shorter gaming periods
It is a free, ad-supported game available for both Windows Phone 8 and 7.x devices. You can pick up your copy of Toy Pirates here in the Windows Phone Store.