There’s a reason why people dream about the good old days of pirates. To be a pirate meant freedom. It also came with a lot of bad things like scurvy, betrayal, and that good old classic death. Video games try to take out the bad sides of being a pirate to provide players with fun fantasies like in Assassin’s Creed 4: Black Flag.
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That might just be the best pirate game ever made as players could sail around singing sea shanties to their heart’s content. On a smaller scale, many RPGs have offered pirate-based classes and these are some of the few notable ones. These games may not have sea shanties or sailing in them, but they still help carry on that pirate vibe.
6 Bravely Default
- February 7, 2014
- Silicon Studio
Bravely Default was like the spiritual successor of the Final Fantasy series which dialed back a lot of the flash of that series. It had a Job system like many entries in that franchise including Final Fantasy 3, which was the first. In Bravely Default, players could unlock new jobs by defeating bosses. So, to get the Pirate class, players had to progress through the story.
Every class came with an assortment of stats and usable skills in battle. Also, leveling them up would unlock abilities that characters could then equip even when the Job was no longer in use. For example, the Pirate class could unlock an ability that would increase physical attack damage made. Pirate as a Job would return in Bravely Second: End Layer, but not in Bravely Default 2.
5 Disgaea 5: Alliance Of Vengeance
Disgaea 5: Alliance of Vengeance
- October 6, 2015
- Nippon Ichi Software
Disgaea 5: Alliance of Vengeance was a tactical RPG and is part of a series that has been going strong since the PS2 era. Most of these games revolve around the Underworld and demons scheming to get a one-up on each other. Heroes are set in their own classes and cannot be changed. These heroes can recruit lesser demons that do come in classes though.
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Disgaea 5: Alliance Of Vengeance introduced the concept of a Pirate which specialized in axes, guns, and swords. They looked like a pirate with the stereotypical hat, coat, and everything. Here’s the weird part. Every class in this series can be upgraded which basically surmounts to new titles and color palettes. Pirates went from Raiders to Vikings to Interceptors to Buccaneers and then to Jolly Rogers which was a fitting end to the class rankings but it had a baffling middle.
4 Dragon Quest 7: Fragments Of The Forgotten Past
Dragon Quest 7: Fragments of the Forgotten Past
In the Dragon Quest series, classes are called Vocations. Many entries in the series allowed players to change classes mid-adventure but Dragon Quest 7: Fragments of the Forgotten Past was the first to add Pirates. Technically, this Vocation started as Sailor, and then Pirate was the upgrade. Players had to master one or multiple Vocations to unlock stronger ones and Pirate required a mastery of both Sailor and Thief.
It makes sense since pirates are thieves of the high seas. This is all individually based too as one character could not jump into the Pirate Vocation if another unlocked it. Pirate was not locked into Dragon Quest 7: Fragments of the Forgotten Past as a one-and-done situation as it returned in other entries like Dragon Quest 10: Awakening of the Five Walkers Online, which is an MMO that has yet to leave Japan.
3 Final Fantasy 11
Final Fantasy 11
- October 28, 2003
- Square Enix
When it comes to RPGs, none of them do the class system better than Final Fantasy. There are a lot of entries that offer Jobs, which is what they are called just like in Bravely Default. While a lot of the entries feature pirates in some form, like Faris in Final Fantasy 5, there aren’t really any that offer Jobs equivalent to a Pirate. The only exception is Final Fantasy 11 which was the franchise’s first MMO.
In Final Fantasy 11, the pirate-based Job is called a Corsair. They were introduced in the expansion, Final Fantasy 11: Treasures of Aht Urhgan, and they are more of a support Job. Their abilities revolve around gambling to curse enemies or to beef up party members. They do have some offensive capabilities though like their Hexagun weapon which looked like a classic revolver mixed with a flintlock and is shaped like a hexagon.
2 Fire Emblem
Fire Emblem: Shadow Dragon and the Blade of Light
Fire Emblem is like the granddaddy of tactical RPGs which practically populated the genre or at least it did in Japan. The series would not see the West until 2003 with the Game Boy Advance game, Fire Emblem. In most games, every hero unit is assigned a class which they can then level up through EXP and evolve through other means. Sometimes they can even change complete classes which is more of a modern hook.
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Even though Pirate is a niche class in RPGs, the first Fire Emblem game on the NES had a Pirate class. It specialized in axes and units could walk across water like they were Jesus. The axe and water-walking abilities carried over to other entries that had Pirates or Pirate-equivalent successors but pirates overall mostly became enemy types.
1 Rogue Legacy 2
Rogue Legacy 2
- April 28, 2022
- Cellar Door Games
- Roguelike , Metroidvania
Rogue Legacy 2 was primarily a roguelike but it had RPG elements and classes to make it worth discussing. It’s a 2D action game wherein players have to traverse through an ever-evolving castle. Monsters would drop temporary upgrades, which would be lost in death, and gold which could be used back at home base to buy permanent upgrades through the family’s castle. Once dead, that family member was gone for good and their successor would carry on the quest.
These children came with classes and a Rogue Legacy 2 added Pirate as one of the standard rotations. Their weapon of choice was a canon that players could hit enemies with physically or they could stop and shoot it. The coolest part of this class was the special which allowed players to summon a pirate-based airship that allowed them to fly. It also shot cannonballs out which was a wicked offensive ability.
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