The PiratesAhoy! Community, makers of the popular mods Pirates of the Caribbean: New Horizons and Age of Pirates 2: Gentlemen of Fortune, presents...
Hearts of Oak logo
Hearts of Oak: Conquest of the Seas is a non-commercial PC game that is to become the historical seafaring game to end them all!
Fun, realistic gameplay on land and at sea, set during the Age of Sail, will provide extensive free play, exciting scripted storylines and intense multiplayer scenarios.
Our goal is to allow anyone interested in the era to be able to live their dream!

The gameplay will be similar in style to Akella's Storm Engine-based games that we are known for modifying, but we intend to take it further and offer more freedom, immersion and authenticity. The player will assume the role of a captain and have full command of their crew, being able to delegate tasks and give orders in the heat of battle. Dynamic hand-to-hand combat will make boarding enemy ships and capturing forts a fast paced, hectic experience. Whether you want to enlist in a navy, lead an honest merchant life, or resort to piracy, Hearts of Oak will offer many hours of gameplay.

Using the power of CryEngine, and the knowledge and talent of our artists, the game will deliver stunning visuals worthy of tomorrow's PC hardware. You'll be able to explore a vast open world filled with highly detailed locations, ships and characters.

We are a team of volunteers, and due to the scale of this project, the game will take many months to develop. We will be releasing tech demos, alpha and beta versions over the coming months, but please be patient and have faith in our dev team. This is our dream game concept, and we are determined to make it a reality!

Help Wanted!

We're looking for talented, enthusiastic people to help us make this game a reality.
For a list of our current vacancies, and for information on how to join the team, visit our Development Roles page.
Please note that we are NOT offering payment!

If you are unable to join our team, you can still help by spreading the word! If you know anyone with the skills we need, please do point them in our direction.

Frequently Asked Questions

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Realistic Caribbean Test Merchant's Marks Tavern Interior Lighting
Blog RSS Feed Report abuse Latest News: Hearts of Oak News 22nd July 2014

6 comments by Armada_ on Jul 22nd, 2014

Welcome to another edition of our Hearts of Oak progress articles!

Each week*, we will bring you a summary of the latest development news, including work-in-progress screenshots and in-game footage, along with a more in-depth look at featured content.

This week we have a wide range of impressive models, engine screenshots and music to share...

3D Models

There are several sub-categories of 3D assets to cover here, so below we'll list various types of assets, what they're called and who made them.


- WIP Chapel; Wedori
A high-detail period chapel, featuring full interior. The interior itself isn't complete, but the building is otherwise perfect for many in-game towns.


- Sabre Concept Art; SuperDurnius
Continuing his latest trend, SuperDurnius has produced another great piece of concept art, this time on the subject of sabres.

- WIP Rapiers and Daggers; SuperDurnius
Here's another work-in-progress shot of some rapiers with different hand guards. You'll also notice some daggers, which borrow parts from the rapier models.

Scenery and Props

- Cart and buckets; Wedori
More props with which to decorate the game world, both made to a high quality.

- Shipping crates; SuperChango
This is a selection of containers of different types. From left to right: a wood-reinforced box, an iron-reinforced box, and a flush box.

Below is a group of logos, or Merchant's marks, that will be randomly applied to these boxes in the game.


Here we'll show how the game world is coming together, with content demonstrating lighting effects, time-of-day transitions and environmental design.

- Tavern interior lighting; RobinPC
This tavern, built by SinKing, is being brought to life by RobinPC who is applying realistic lighting effects in the engine.

- Test Island progress; RobinPC
This is one of the latest attempts to create a realistic Caribbean environment, from the lighting effects to the colour of the sea.


To give you a taste of what's to come, we're regularly showcasing an original track, produced by one of our talented composers.
This time, we're taking a look at a piece many of you have probably heard already: "Hearts of Oak", a theme song composed for the game by Flannery.
As always, you can listen to the piece via the link below, and read some comments from the composer about how he came up with the track.

Hearts of Oak - Final Mixdown.mp3

Flannery wrote:This was actually the first piece I made for Hearts of Oak, and the sketch for it was initially a test to show my worth to come on board the HoO team.

To brake the piece down as simple as possible: I wanted the piece to depict different notions about being at sea - different weather, different daily chores on and below the deck, the thrill of the chase, and of course the battle.

The initial melody is the scout, watching the horizon for easy prey and dangers. Then the strings come in depicting the heartbeat and the adrenaline rising. Then we have the cello which introduces the main underlying melody, which is copied by other instruments through out the whole piece. This is meant to be the rolling of the waves.

The initial dramatic drums depict the sailors getting the ship ready for battle or the chase. The other themes and melodies throughout the piece depict everything from boarding a surrendered ship, sailing through storms, washing the decks, dividing loot, taking prisoners and so on.

Also a funny fact - one if my ideas was to really forward the feeling of rolling waves, hence why the theme has this underlying melody that keeps going up and down throughout most of the piece.
But also, when you look at all the notesheets for it all, almost every instrument creates a wavelike notion with the notes, so the notesheet itself looks like a sea of waves.

This music is the property of D'laymusic - Norway, and Christian "Flannery" Tornholm-Lehn. It is protected under copyright law, which if violated might lead to legal persecutions.

Stay tuned for more original music soon!


We still have a few high-priority vacancies that need to be filled to help us make further progress on the game.
As a reminder, all of these developer roles are NON-PAID positions. Current priorities are as follows:

- Character Modellers
- Other 3D Artists
- User Interface Developers
- Texture/Shader Artists
- Engine Programmers/Scripters

For role descriptions and how to join the team, click here.

That's it for this week's progress; we'll have more updates for you soon!
Don't know what the Hearts of Oak project is? Take a look at our Frequently Asked Questions for more information.
*Please note that while we're aiming to post a new article each week, we can't always manage this, but we will post articles as regularly as we can!

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Post comment Comments  (0 - 10 of 247)
loco036 Jul 29 2014, 12:47am says:

So will this game have the 19th century? I would love to be in a clipper and trade in South East Asia

+1 vote     reply to comment
Armada_ 14hours 54mins ago replied:

The plan is to include a variety of time periods, up to and including the early 19th century (Napoleonic era), and to *eventually* expand beyond the Caribbean. For now though, we need to start small, so that means small Caribbean islands and one initial time period.

Keep in mind that we're designing the game to be very mod-friendly, so if someone wants to create a mid 19th century mod with clippers, they can. :)

+1 vote     reply to comment
Guest Jul 8 2014, 8:24am says:

Is there an estimated date on the demo's release?

+1 vote     reply to comment
Armada_ Jul 9 2014, 7:28pm replied:

Not yet. We'll have more information in one of the next news articles.

+2 votes     reply to comment
Guest Jul 6 2014, 11:13am says:

this project seems an interesting one to be honest. I would like to help you guys in the 3D model making department as am an architecture student and have some experience with the creation of 3d objects. I mainly use Rhino4, 3Ds max for my projects.

+2 votes     reply to comment
Pieter_Boelen Jul 26 2014, 6:16pm replied:

You are very welcome to join us at !

+1 vote     reply to comment
Guest Jul 1 2014, 10:23am says:

Greetings for deciding to make such a game! It is my favourite genre and I will wait for it impatiently!
I would like to offer some recommendations for it. Very important is to preserve the real spirit of 17th and 18th century and not to use modern slang. Also though some gamers like fantasy and horror motifs, I think the game would be better if it is historical and there aren't so many walking skeletons or zombies. It would be nice if trade system is well developed and the player could chose pursuing a trade career. As a whole,according to me, the game would be best if it is close to Sea Dogs, the first Akella's game, but having a better graphics and more options, of course. Sea Dogs owed its success and charm due to its incredible atmosphere, as it was close to 17th century feeling. It had a brilliant plot, resembling the novels of Sabatini and R.L.Stevenson; and also its music was superb. It would be great if Hearts of Oak manages to convey similar atmosphere (feeling). And do you intend including several storylines, or one major plus free play?
Again greetings for the great idea and wishing you success!

+3 votes     reply to comment
Pieter_Boelen Jul 2 2014, 3:48pm replied:

We take a lot of inspiration from our Pirates of the Caribbean: New Horizons modpack which was, as you perhaps know, originally developed as being Sea Dogs 2. Many of our original modders are big fans of the original Sea Dogs themselves.

+1 vote     reply to comment
Armada_ Jul 1 2014, 11:20am replied:

We plan to cover much of what you said, including a more historical approach to design, so hopefully we shan't disappoint. ;)

The plan is to start with one major storyline, plus a freeplay mode with sidequests, and eventually include more major storylines (and time periods) as well.

+1 vote     reply to comment
Pieter_Boelen Jun 25 2014, 11:54am replied:

They're two different games (one single-player, one multi-player) that will not be released at the same time at all. Also, our game is not for profit. Any claimed 'competition' between our two games does not exist. See here:

We think Naval Action looks very promising and we sincerely hope that it will indeed be a great game to play. We are certainly looking forward to trying it out ourselves!

+3 votes     reply to comment
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