These days pirates hold a place on the shortlist of pop culture staples, having swashbuckled their way to a spot alongside vampires, zombies, and ninjas. As such, there are no shortage of pirate-themed games out there to be had. That's where this here list comes in. Consider it a treasure map to the shiniest pieces of gold in the briny deep of the App Store. Look hardy, ye land lubbers! It's time to set sail for the watery horizon!

  • 10

    Treasure Story


    What's the one thing that no pirate can resist? Arrr... why, it be treasure! Story, that is. This addictive Facebook-game-turned-iOS-title from TeamLava gives would-be treasure seekers a map and a shovel and sends them off to methodically search for hidden riches across different islands. Each island has a certain number of treasure chests that you are supposed to find by tapping your way, square by square, through various types of terrain. But the real star in this game is the music. I could listen to those soothing island rhythms all day.

  • 9

    Jake's Never Land Pirate School


    Even though it's safe to say that most Pirates are murderous grog swillers, there are still a few out there that are safe for kids. Case in point with the pirates in Jake's Never Land Pirate School, a charming iOS title that's based on the Disney show of the same name. The game features four different modes that will have you doing all kinds of pirate-related activities, such as sailing, playing in a pirate band and practicing your navigation. All of the activities are fun and also educational for young kids. The game is challenging, but still very playable and will keep kids interested, especially if they are already a fan of the show. Parents can feel alright letting their young ones set sail, knowing that they will be learning a little bit along the way, which is why it's a nice fit for our 10 best pirate games.

  • 8

    Lil' Pirates

    Beeline Interactive

    Despite its cartoony look, this game isn't just for kids. Developed for Capcom by Canadian game veterans IUGO, this charming pirate adventure has been around for awhile and it's still one of the better ways to get your doubloon fix when gaming on your iOS device. The point of this game is to start out with a small dingy and transform it, through social gaming activities, into a mighty pirate vessel. With plenty of clever jobs and activities always at the ready, Lil' Pirates was clearly made by people who love their subject matter. The game is chock full of adventure that will take you to from sailing the high seas, to exploring remote islands, to tempting fate with a volcano. The light-hearted tone and subtle touches are what make this game so enjoyable.

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    Pirate Gunner HD

    Black Pearl Games

    Avast! Tis true what they say about the legend of Black Pearl Games and Pirate Gunner HD? Ye mean that it's one of the most fun and addictive piratey puzzle games on iOS? Well then, hoist the mizzenmast and batten down the hatches, me hearties! Prepare for all of the fuse lighting and cannon shooting action ye can muster in this 10 best pirate games entry!

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    Pirate Mysteries

    Kristanix Games

    First and foremost, Pirate Mysteries is a great hidden object game, with a rich environment full of great details, characters and atmosphere. In addition to being one of the better hidden object games out there, this is also one of the best pirate adventures to be had. Mixed in with the hidden object gameplay are several well-placed mini games to help break up the steady action of hunting around. It's great that hidden object games have become a genre within the iOS universe. They harken back to the good old days of PC gaming and are great ways to enjoy new material, while still getting to feel nostalgic at the same time. When designed right, they fit perfectly with the touchscreen interface of the iPhone and iPad.

  • 5

    Pirates of the Caribbean: Master of the Seas


    One of the basic laws of the video game world is that, inevitably, any movie tie-in games will almost always stink. They are usually rushed out to meet the release date and generally seem to be just another part of the marketing blitz for a big blockbuster, right alongside fast food toys and credit card promotions. But Disney's Pirates of the Caribbean: Master of the Seas, which was released in time with The Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides, seems to have improbably bucked that trend with this fun, fast-paced RPG style game in the mold of popular Zynga titles. Only you're not picking carrots here - you're dueling and firing cannons!

  • 4

    Sid Meier's Pirates!

    2K Games

    Sid Meier, best known for his legendary Civilization series of games, trained his historical eye on the Caribbean, releasing Sid Meier's Pirates! back in 2004. Without too many bells and whistles added on, this version is a faithful port of that game. Which is more than enough, since it's a Sid Meier game. Unfortunately, it's also at the mercy of what afflicts a lot of other games ported over to iOS, as there are no shortage of bugs to be found. If you save frequently, you should be fine, save for the occasional frustration over the app crashing. But no game on this list takes a broader look at the pirate genre, giving you a chance to participate in everything from dueling, trading, wenching, and battling other ships on the high seas.

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    Plunderland, a clever little title from small UK developer JohnnyTwoShoes, is a unique pirate adventure that is one of the most distinctive-looking games on this best pirate games list. The simple, cartoony graphics and the look of the character models reminded us right away of the cell-shaded beauty of The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker. If you think about it, Wind Waker was kind of a great pirate game in its own right. The basic game play in Plunderland is to tilt your iOS device and guide your pirate ship to the end of the level, collecting loot and battling your way past rival ships, plundering native islands, and fighting sea creatures. And since it was developed across the pond, there's plenty of patented British wit and personality packed into this quirky title.

  • 2

    Crimson: Steam Pirates

    Bungie Aerospace Corporation

    Crimson: Steam Pirates blends the genres of pirates and steampunk into its own intriguing mix, creating something that's as potent and intoxicating as the thickest mug of grog. Though it may sound like blasphemy to any pirate purists out there, I found it deeply satisfying to blow up another ship with a laser cannon. Since this game is an offshoot from powerhouse developer Bungie, you know the quality will be there. And it's evident from the get-go, with everything from the presentation, the interface, and the gameplay feeling well honed. Though you might not guess it from the top-down screenshots, Crimson: Steam Pirates packs in a great story to accompany its addictive turn-based gameplay. In the game, you play Thomas Blood, a man recently imprisoned for stealing jewels from Queen Victoria. The action starts after you're set free by pirates and taken into the Caribbean, where you have to start earning your keep, working your way up to eventually being known as a terror of the high seas.

  • 1

    The Secret of Monkey Island: Special Edition


    Simply put, the Monkey Island games were and still are the gold standard of pirate video games. The re-issues for iOS took the already classic titles and made them even better, with the feature of being able to switch between old and new versions of the game being a clear standout. The signature LucasArts adventure game blend of clever dialogue, humor, and Rube Goldbergian puzzles was pretty much invented with this series. Even though we're singling out The Secret of Monkey Island, we would not hesitate in saying that Monkey Island 2: LeChuck's Revenge is equally as good. They are essential games for anyone who's a fan of adventure games or pirates. If you are a fan of both pirates and adventure games and you haven't played these... you've got a lot of explaining to do, mister. It's no secret that this game deserves to be #1 in our 10 best pirate games list.


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