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 Unity, 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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Blog RSS Feed Report abuse Latest News: Hearts of Oak Dev Blog 27th Feb 2015

6 comments by Armada_ on Feb 27th, 2015


Welcome to the first of our new Hearts of Oak development blogs!

We've decided to do things a bit differently with our news articles now, offering up a brief insight into our current development plans on a much more regular basis.

The usual news updates are few and far between, albeit quite long and packed with screenshots, videos, music and descriptions of all three. Therefore, we've opted to push out more frequent articles with only the most important information on the game's progress.

Don't worry, there will still be full news articles from time to time, but only at key milestones such as public releases or other big announcements.

So, with that out of the way, here's what we've been up to lately:

Developer Videos

In this video series, lead developer Captain Murphy talks through the latest updates from behind the scenes, explaining how and why each feature is being added to the game.

- Suimono Water System Overview

- Suimono Updates and FPS Controller

Production Plans

Recently, the team has been having lengthy discussions about how to move the project forward.
We are acutely aware of the lack of a public release thus far, but more importantly, the production roadmap was previously too vague, providing little framework to build from.

Now, we've begun to redefine the design document from the ground up. Don't panic, the final goal is still the same. The main thing we've changed is the route we're taking to achieve it.

What we're now working towards is a base framework that not only lays the foundations of future builds, but also has a strong focus on the core gameplay mechanics we want to include. This will lead into the first proper release with the following features:

  • Main menu with save, load and options dialogues
  • Top-down chart view for navigation, allowing simple trading, shipyard functions and basic interaction with AI ships
  • Ship encounter (in 3D sea view) between two identical vessels, with the player controlling one from the helm and the AI controlling the other

This game version won't feature islands, as the functionality of towns and colonies will be simulated on the chart view to start with. Remember, this is just a base version; we will be adding a LOT more assets and features once this release has been thoroughly tested and works to our satisfaction.

If you have any questions about this first game version, be sure to ask away in the comments.
Stay tuned for more updates soon!

Want to volunteer your time to the project? Check our List of Development Roles for details.
Want to support the project financially? You can donate through Paypal via our official site.
Check out our Frequently Asked Questions for more information on Hearts of Oak.


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Post comment Comments  (20 - 30 of 312)
david_the_angel
david_the_angel Nov 29 2014, 7:00am says:

Good job so far! I have some questions about some features in the game, will you be able to sail between islands without using the world map and encounter ships at random? Also, will cannonballs make visible damage to ships where they hit, for example holes in the hull?

+1 vote     reply to comment
Armada_ Creator
Armada_ Dec 3 2014, 8:54am replied:

Yes, you will be able to sail between islands directly, but we're also going to let you set a course for your ship and then skip time until you encounter something or reach your destination.

As for damage, we'll probably end up with a middle-ground solution. Certain parts such as railings and masts might allow physical damage, while the outer hull will use 2D damage textures that create the illusion of 3D penetrations. Hopefully that will provide an impressive damage model that doesn't kill the framerate. ;)

+1 vote   reply to comment
Guest
Guest Dec 3 2014, 10:33am replied:

Wow, im hyped! Do you have any current deadlines in development or demo releases?

+1 vote     reply to comment
Armada_ Creator
Armada_ Dec 5 2014, 8:21am replied:

Unfortunately, as we're approaching the Christmas period, most of our developers are very busy elsewhere, so it's hard to say when we might have our first demo released. That said, we are making progress, so we might have something extremely basic available for testing early next year.

As soon as we have a proper estimated release date for the first demo, we'll let you know. ;)

+2 votes   reply to comment
Guest
Guest Nov 10 2014, 5:33am says:

Cryengine? I think i'm in love with unity!!! Besides, do you guys have any ideas on when the demo will be released? I really can't wait! :D

+1 vote     reply to comment
Armada_ Creator
Armada_ Nov 12 2014, 7:42am replied:

Our lead developer is short on time at the moment, so we don't have an estimated release window for the demo just yet. But as soon as we do, we will let you know. ;)

+1 vote   reply to comment
Bluehawk
Bluehawk Nov 7 2014, 7:54pm says:

The Summary blurb still mentions CryEngine.

+2 votes     reply to comment
Armada_ Creator
Armada_ Nov 8 2014, 8:47am replied:

Thanks, fixed now. Must've missed that one.

+2 votes   reply to comment
Armada_ Creator
Armada_ Nov 5 2014, 7:02pm says:

To all:

With respect, please do us a favour and stop suggesting that we use other game engines.

We appreciate that many people have a preferred game engine that doesn't coincide with the one we've chosen, and that's fine, but we would prefer not to see any further comments asking why we're not using other engines. Please refer to our FAQ instead.

We're getting a little tired of repeatedly defending our decision to use Unity, and we'd much rather spend that time doing something productive... like making the game. ;)

Thank you for your cooperation, and for continuing to support the project.

+9 votes   reply to comment
Drover15
Drover15 Nov 6 2014, 2:16pm replied:

It's your game... You don't have to defend yourself on the decisions you make, F*** those backseat game-devloper wanna-bes #UnityFTW

P.S. I love the work you guys are putting into every little detail <3

+4 votes     reply to comment
Manhatten!
Manhatten! Oct 31 2014, 5:17pm says:

http://www.crydev.net/viewtopic.php?f=309&t=126505
when i look at that, i`ll say one thing, sure the game is good but it was a biggest mistake to move from CryEninge to Unity, from lion to rabbit :)
since EaaS is released there are plenty fixes and release over month... when i looked at that island and that searched game and found this... u mean how i felt? pretty disappointed :) well what to say, choose is a free, and game even on Unity looks pretty damn good :)

-3 votes     reply to comment
CaptainMurphyDUCK
CaptainMurphyDUCK Nov 3 2014, 3:59pm replied:

Every 'fix' that EaaS released ended up breaking our code. Month after month of having to step backwards 5-50% of our code base was infuriating. When we began to ask for help, or at the least a release plan for EaaS for their release cycle from CryTek, we were given a huge amount of silence, even though we have several of our developing staff on the EaaS program. We spent a week and a half in Unity (free version) and were able to replicate about 90% of what it had taken us 6 months to do in CryEngine simply because of the poor code layout and documentation of CE. It was a painful decision to make, but eye candy is not everything when it comes to Hearts Of Oak. Without solid content and stable mechanics it is nothing but an empty shell of a game.

+4 votes     reply to comment
Armada_ Creator
Armada_ Nov 1 2014, 9:38am replied:

Visually, of course CryEngine still looks better. But as for development itself, we've made a LOT more progress in MUCH less time with Unity than we ever did with CryEngine.

Besides, once Unity 5 is officially released, the game will start to look vastly improved, and we're still nowhere near final release quality yet. I don't know why people expect us to have the best looking game ever at pre-alpha stage.

+1 vote   reply to comment
Manhatten!
Manhatten! Nov 5 2014, 3:16pm replied:

P.S Why u dont move guys on UE4, its a best looking engine for now with source code withing (around 20gb, don`t looked in code and idk its full or half or whatever but, size says it`s word).
Again good luck :)

-2 votes     reply to comment
Manhatten!
Manhatten! Nov 5 2014, 3:09pm replied:

of course i respect choose of creator ! i`m also game developer working on ce3 and i know how it is (well they released some new codes: crysys and more for now :D :D). Well ye unity is made with C# and of course its way easy to mod, also i dont really except a best looking game in pre-alpha stage, its normal but i just said, when i looked a map just single map without content on cryengine, it was just amazing and because of that i made this comment :) i respect you guys and wish u good luck in your project, i`m willing to play, at last normal pirate game is coming here :D :D since Pirates of carribean (xbox360 version)

0 votes     reply to comment
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Hearts of Oak: Conquest of the Seas
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