The Coastal Barque is a Ship Type available in Sid Meier's Pirates! (2004). It is a small mid-sized Ship Type, one of the smallest actual trading vessels in the game. It is also the largest variant in the Barque Class family of ships. An unremarkable ship, it is comparable to a Sloop Of War in terms of cannon and crew capacity, but lacks the Sloop's sleek maneuverability and speed in return for a slightly increased cargo hold. Like all other Barques, its main redeeming quality is its ability to sail at odd angles to the wind, allowing it to escape enemy vessels more easily. The Ocean Barque is slightly rarer than its siblings, appearing exclusively as a French Trader.

Icon Pirates2004 Header Pirates2004Sid Meier's Pirates! (2004)Edit

Ship Type
Ocean Barque
Largest member of the Barque class
2004 Ship Barque
A small-to-mid-sized trading vessel
Prevalence: Uncommon
Physical Size: Small-Medium
Maneuverability: Mid-High
Durability: Mid-Low
Best Sailing Point: Broad Reach to Beam Reach
Comparative Speed: Medium
Best Speed: Medium
Max. Cannons: 16 Icon Cannon
Max. Crew: 125 Icon Crew
Min. Crew: 14 Icon Crew
Ideal Crew (w/ Max Cannons): 62 Icon Crew
Cargo Capacity: 80 tons
Basic Sale Price: 375 Icon GoldCoin

In Sid Meier's Pirates!, the Ocean Barque is the name of a Ship Type belonging to the Barque Class family of ships. It is the Largest variant of that class. One of the smallest trading ships available in the game, it is considered one step down in trading capacity from a basic Merchantman.

The Ocean Barque is one of the more agile trading vessel in the game. Its speed and maneuverability advantage allow it to escape combat rather easily compared to other trading ships, by sailing at odd angles to the wind where other ships cannot follow. It is lightly-armed, a little too lightly to defend itself in prolonged combat against anything but the smallest opponents. It will easily fall prey to assailants who can match its speed.

The Ocean Barque carries up to 16 Cannons into battle, and can hold a Crew of up to 125 men. With less than 14 men available, the Ocean Barque becomes sluggish and difficult to use. With at least 62 men and 16 cannons on board, the Ocean Barque is at its maximum fighting efficiency.

Given the above statistics, the Ocean Barque is comparable to a Sloop Of War or Royal Sloop in terms of firepower and crew capacity. In addition, it can carry 80 tons of cargo, which is ample space for Food, cannon, and quite a bit of extra cargo, making it a viable trader. However, for this it pays with both maneuverability and speed, making it an inferior combatant to any Sloop.

When sold, an Ocean Barque yields 375 Icon GoldCoin, plus 94 Icon GoldCoin for each upgrade installed on the ship. This assumes that the ship is at 100% condition, otherwise it is sold for less (down to 10 Icon GoldCoin if either sails or hull are all but gone).

Upgrades for an Ocean Barque cost 600 Icon GoldCoin each. Once the rank of Admiral has been attained, Ocean Barque upgrades will only cost 300 Icon GoldCoin each.

In the Player's HandsEdit

Thanks to its poor combat capabilities, the Ocean Barque is not a favoured Flagship. However, being the largest member of the Barque Class, there are advantages to using these in a Player's Fleet as cargo-carrying vessels.

The Ocean Barque is fast enough to follow a larger combat flagship, especially when sailing eastwards. Its cargo capacity, close to that of a Merchantman, gives it ample space to store loot and Food. With 125 men on board (187 with Triple Hammocks) it can also increase the player's ability for Raids significantly, again without compromising much overall fleet speed.

Of course, Ocean Barques are fairly rare, so the opportunity to catch one may not come around until at least a few years into the campaign. In addition, many players find that their fleet performs better when forgoing Barques entirely by adding Brigs Of War instead.

Roles and NationalityEdit

The Ocean Barque is a fairly rare ship. Its only common Ship Role is a Trader, sailing for the French. It will appear in this capacity later in the game, especially sailing out of wealthier French Ports. Being a Trader means it is somwhat common, since there are plenty of Traders going about the Caribbean at any given time.

In addition to this, the Spanish will sometimes use the Ocean Barque as a Military Payroll Ship. However, such ships are much rarer than traders.

In CombatEdit

The Ocean Barque has one important combat advantage which it shares with all other Barque Class ships: its unique arrangement of Fore-And-Aft Rigging allows it to sail comfortably at odd angles to the wind, such as Beam Reach (perpendicular to wind direction) and can even manage a few knots going Close-Hauled.

This capability means that the Ocean Barque can make its escape by turning in such directions and simply speeding away where few ships can follow. This enables it to evade most medium-sized and larger vessels, assuming it can avoid suffering sail damage during the opening barrages of a fight. In this maneuver it is slightly worse than a regular Barque or Coastal Barque, since it is somewhat larger.

Due to its diminished speed, the Ocean Barque is usually easier prey for combat vessels - especially the Sloop, Brigantine and Brig which can occasionally overtake it even when it manipulates the wind. However, the Ocean Barque is better armed than its smaller siblings, and can inflict some damage on such vessels as they give chase, hopefully slowing them down sufficiently to gain the advantage. Pinnaces attacking an Ocean Barque should be careful, as its broadside is clearly more dangerous when combined with its sailing capabilities.

To catch an Ocean Barque, simply make sure to begin combat by approaching it from upwind. This prevents the Ocean Barque from escaping, as it can either run in your direction (opening itself to attack) or flee in a less comfortable direction that would allow you to overtake it. However, do watch out for its broadside, as it will gain a speed advantage if it can damage your sails sufficiently in the first salvo.