The Assassin’s Creed titles are fairly straightforward, and Black Flag is no exception. However, there are plenty of tips that will help make the gaming experience a bit more fun and entertaining. Who wants to struggle through a game when you can pick up a few tips and decimate the computer as you make your way to the end credits?
Read our Templar Armor quest guide.
10.) Pirates Don’t Hide
Stealth has always been an important part to Assassin’s Creed games, but Black Flag is a game about pirates. While some missions require Edward to sneak around unseen, a vast majority do not. These missions can be completed by attacking every enemy in the open and making a huge commotion. In many cases, it’s faster and easier than sneaking around, especially if you’re good with your swords.
9.) Edward Comes Last
Most of the loot you’ll find throughout the game comes via the Jackdaw and the ability to sail around and combat other ships. So while it’s important to keep the Jackdaw upgraded, you can get away with using the same swords throughout most of the game. Unless you’re just horrible at melee combat, you can ignore upgrading Edward, and save your loot for Jackdaw upgrades through a good 90 percent of the main story.
Stuck in the single player campaign? Read our free walkthrough.
8.) Always be Ready to Counter
When fighting as Edward, there are many instances in which you’ll need to take on multiple enemies. When this happens, position the camera so you can see all around Edward, and always be ready to counter. It’s virtually impossible to injure Edward if you’re good at countering an enemy’s attack. This even works against gun fire because you can grab an enemy and use him as a human shield.
7.) Take Your Time
There’s no rush to get through Assassin’s Creed 4. The faster you try to make your way through, the less time you spend looting, which means the weaker your ship will be. The strength of the Jackdaw is important, so make sure you spend ample time sailing the seas looting and plundering to obtain valuable assets to sell. You’ll need the loot to upgrade your ship early and often.
6.) Expand Your Territory
While you can see a full map of the ocean at any point, you won’t see the finer details until you start expanding your territory. To do so, lay siege to the various forts scattered around the map. Each fort represents a sector of the ocean, and by claiming the fort as your own, you’ll be able to see the finer details of the corresponding sector. This makes it easy to spot treasure, where you can partake in harpooning and other bonuses.
5.) Become Wanted
One of the scarcest resources in Assassin’s Creed 4 is metal. You can loot ship after ship and find very little metal, which is needed in large quantities to upgrade the Jackdaw. The best way to procure metal is to take down military ships, but they can be hard to find until you are a wanted man. As you take down civilian ships, your wanted level will rise and more military vessels will appear. This is a relatively easy way to secure metal.
4.) Aim is Everything
During naval combat, aim your cannons low on the opposing ship’s hull. This causes far more damage and depletes the ship’s health bar much faster. If you don’t want a ship to run from you, aim for the sails to reduce its speed and make it less maneuverable. Once you’re ready to board, use the swivel canon to take down as many members of the ship’s crew as you can before you board.
3.) Take a Time-Out
If you’re fighting against multiple ships in a naval battle, stay focused on one ship at a time. If you can cripple a ship enough to board it, you can take a time-out in the middle of the battle. If you initiate the boarding process, other ships attacking you will pause their attack until you’ve completed the boarding process. This means you can board one of the enemy ships and repair the Jackdaw while in the middle of a naval battle.
Check out Prima’s Jackdaw upgrade guide.
2.) Mortars, Mortars, Mortars
Not only are mortars one of the most damaging weapons you can equip on the Jackdaw, these also have the most range. It’s extremely beneficial to launch an attack with a round of mortar shots before closing in on an opposing ship. If you have good aim and enough ammunition, you can even incapacitate an enemy ship without using other weaponry.
1.) Hull Strength is Key
The key to a winning any battle is good defense. The first upgrade you should make to the Jackdaw is hull strength. It doesn’t matter how good your firepower and naval tactics are. If you can’t take a hit, you won’t last long in a naval battle. Upgrade the hull early and often to make sure you’re ready for anything.