The "New Horizons" mod for the 2003 Pirates of the Caribbean game by Akella is a continuation of the famous Build mod series. Developed as Pirates of the Caribbean Build 14, "New Horizons" continues where Build 13 left off, adding more new content than ever before.
A lot has been speculated about the early days of Jack Sparrow and we're not even sure if this particular account is entirely accurate. It does explain some of the events that shaped this infamous pirate, but the journey can take multiple twists and turns depending on your choices, which may or may not end with you sailing into the sunset after lifting the Curse of the Black Pearl.
Posted by Pieter_Boelen on Mar 8th, 2009
The Hoist the Colours main quest has Jack (or whomever you decide to play as) as a young man well before any of the films. He has run away from home and has just arrived in the Caribbean. To get things started right off the bat, Jack has been arrested and brought to a meeting with his father, who asks Jack for his help in a matter threatening the pirate nation. Not being a pirate himself, Jack refuses and sets out to seek fame and fortune on his own terms.
Illustration: Jack Sparrow as a young man
The player is now free to pursue his own course of action, choosing to act on, or ignore, the hints given by the various characters he meets. This provides a totally free-playing game for those who prefer to trust their own skills. For those who wish to live the Jack Sparrow story, there are several routes that may be taken before the story links into the more familiar territory of the film story line. This, the game follows fairly closely. It is not “script perfect” but the general highlights of the first film are in there.
Illustration: Jack Sparrow, Will Turner and Mr. Gibbs
There are many new characters to meet in this game and film goers and Sparrow aficionados will recognise many of them. You will meet familiar friends like Will Turner, Elizabeth Swann and Mr. Gibbs and also familiar foes like Cutler Beckett and Davy Jones. Additionally, there's also totally new characters who may or may not be what they appear to be.
A new addition to the game play are “trap” quests. These will lead the player on a wild goose chase, or worse still, death (in game terms, that is!). The player will not be aware of these until it is too late! Unless he takes care to heed some of the advice given by some of the game characters. Other game characters, will of course, provide bad advice!
A totally separate story line will lead the player on a treasure hunt. Here Jack has succumbed to the lure of the gold. Of course also in the alternate version, there will be pitfalls.
The game, other than some hints by various characters, gives no indication which storyline the player is on, nor if it is the right track or not. Whereas this might give lead to frustration to some, it does provide repeat playability, having to follow different options until the player achieves the story ending he wants.
Illustration: The Black Pearl, Jack Sparrow's beloved ship
The Jack Sparrow quest offers something for pretty much everyone. Obviously it's based on the films, but before the film section of the quest starts, there are many routes to take making for quite some open-ended gameplay. Even during the film section of the quest itself, there are always some alternate routes to try. This will ensure that even if you are very familiar with the films, you'll still get some surprises along the way.
Although we have many ideas for continuing the main quest with the stories of "Dead Man's Chest" and "At World's End" and we even have some character and ship models required for such extensions, for now the quest ends with the "Curse of the Black Pearl". If you have managed to make all the right choices, you will be able to sail into the sunset aboard the Black Pearl, free to go pirating as you see fit.
Being a fictional character from the Pirates of the Caribbean franchise, there is no real Jack Sparrow to speak of. In the three films, Curse of the Black Pearl (2003), Dead Man's Chest (2006) and At World's End (2007), Jack Sparrow is played by the famous actor Johnny Depp. Originally conceived as a fairly straight-forward trickster character to guide the hero, Will Turner (Orlando Bloom), Johnny Depp's performance quickly turned him into the star of the movie.
Illustration: Jack Sparrow at the helm of the HMS Interceptor
Depp's flamboyant and eccentric characterization, partially inspired by Pepé Le Pew and Keith Richards, turned Sparrow into an iconic anti-hero and the breakout character of the series. Depp earned his first Academy Award nomination, and in a case of life imitating art, Richards played a cameo role as Sparrow's father in the third film.
Illustration: Jack Sparrow and Will Turner aboard the HMS Interceptor
Sparrow is the Pirate Lord of the Caribbean Sea and can be treacherous, surviving mostly by using wit and negotiation rather than weapons and force; although he will fight if necessary, he tries to flee most dangerous situations. Sparrow is introduced seeking to regain his ship the Black Pearl from his mutinous first mate Hector Barbossa in the first film, and in the sequels, attempts to escape his blood debt to the legendary Davy Jones while battling the East India Trading Company.
The Hoist the Colours story opens up as pirate Guy Verbinski (who can pick up the reference?) is forced to spend the night in the Tortuga tavern hall and finds none other than our dear Mr. Gibbs there. Soon he finds himself being told of the exploits of that famous rogue Jack Sparrow.
A time and character jump then occurs, placing the player in the shoes of that notorious pirate himself. Jack has just arrived in the Caribbean and finds himself meeting his father in the Grand Cayman townhall, who he has not seen in a long time indeed. This scene leaves Jack, and therefore the player, in complete and utter confusion about what is going on, but it does a good job of introducing us to the world and setting up things to come.
Jack's father, Teague Sparrow, serves to introduce the pirates in the game. Although he appears only here and not later in the game, he has a big role to play. Note how he actually does look like Keith Richards!
One of the choices you can make enables you to sail around with a famous Dutch pirate who has, despite his reputation, done a lot of good for the Caribbean.
The story then continues with the unchronicled events that lead up to The Curse of the Black Pearl before moving into movie territory. Several optional sidequests involving different Pirate Lords are available and each explains some part of Jack's past.
This is not a linear game by any means and different paths are open, some of which lead to the film events, some that lead to alternates from the film events and some that lead into trouble. There are many twists and turns in this game, so keep a weather eye open!