"Dangerous pirates are sailing on the high seas, ready to board your ship and steal victory! Sail your own Pirate ship throughout the islands of the Caribbean, stopping at as many ports of call as possible to enhance your reputation as a fierce Buccaneer. Battle with your opponents, board their ships and take their crew and provisions. Finding treasures with Buried Treasure maps can earn you even more Victory points, but make sure the winds are blowing in the right direction! Learn to use the stronger East-West winds to your advantage. Cooperate with other Pirates to have the wind blow where you need it and use your allotted actions wisely to keep your score in the running for the win."
Winds of Plunder is a Euro-style board game set at the close of the Golden Age of Piracy. In this game, pirates have naught to fear but each other as they plunder the Caribbean. But peace has broken out in Europe, and the clock is now ticking on the days of easy piracy.
As the name implies, there are two central elements to each round of the game: manipulating the Winds, then gathering as much Plunder for your ship as possible. Plunder translates into Victory Points, and the player with the most Victory Points after nine game rounds is the winner.
Wind direction and turn order are both re-established each round by voting with a renewable but limited supply of Wind cubes. Players must decide whether to seize control of the winds directly, cooperate with others, or position themselves while plundering to take advantage of their opponents' placement. But while voting for wind direction can be cooperative, the same Wind cubes voted also apply to control of turn order for plundering -- and there, it's every pirate for himself!
After establishing the wind direction, players spend actions and sail in order to gain plunder. The route to victory becomes easier for the players who amass the most Weapons, Crew, and/or Provisions aboard their ships as they sail. Each of these shipboard items confer special advantages.
Plunder takes many forms: directly with Victory Points gained from ports, each other, and from establishing reputations in the various map areas; indirectly at the game's end with Weapons, Crew, Provisions, and unused Wind cubes.
Rules and references for this game appear in four languages: English, French, German, and Italian. Cards are in English; a multi-lingual text reference for the cards is provided where necessary.
Equipment for Winds of Plunder is as follows:
- A mounted game board depicting the map and the shipboard tally areas
- Instruction booklet
- Quick Start sheet
- Pictographic Reference sheet / Card Text sheet
- Wind arrow marker
- Game Round marker
- "Blackbeard’s" tile
- 18 Victory Point tiles
- 55 playing cards (total)
- 5 Compass tiles (one per player) with rotatable arrow indicators
- 5 sets of player pieces in different colors, each containing:
- 30 wooden Wind cubes,
- a wooden pirate ship marker, and
- a scoring disc
Winds of Plunder is for 3 to 5 players. It takes approximately 60-120 minutes to play, depending on the number of players. The Quick Start sheet provides all relevant rules on a single page, allowing new players to start their first game quickly.
Designer: Alan M. Newman
Developer: Tony Nardo