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Were Sea Dogs 4: The Black Spot in development?
Were Sea Dogs 4: The Black Spot in development?

You are reading material prepared during the development of the pirate life simulation game Corsairs Legacy by Ukrainian Mauris studio with the aim of popularizing the marine theme in general and pirate games in particular. You can follow the project news on our website, YouTube channel, and Telegram.

In a series of interviews with the developers of Sea Dogs, we told interesting facts about the development of the games Pirates of the Caribbean, Sea Legend is Back, touched on Age of Pirates: Caribbean Tales, talked about the Age of Pirates: Return of the Legend and Age of Pirates 2: City of Abandoned Ships, but so far very Little attention was paid to the game Sea Dogs: Black Spot.

This is no coincidence. At the development stop of Sea Dogs 4 in 2008, the era of the very Sea Dogs that fans of the series love so much ended.

The purpose of our interviews is to pay tribute to the people who created the game with their own hands, which is still played in 2021, 15 years after the release of Age of Pirates: Caribbean Tales, the engine of which formed the basis of all current sequels to the Sea Dogs game.

We want these people to be known by sight for their merits.

Although the main development for the end user stopped at the release of Age of Pirates 2: City of Abandoned Ships, we believe that without the work of hundreds of enthusiasts who have supported and developed the game over the past 15 years, the product would not be the way we know it now. We are grateful for the contribution of everyone, and in the future, we will publish interviews with the authors of add-ons, but still, the era of development of those Sea Dogs ended in 2008.

So, in 2018, there was light at the end of the tunnel in the face of the game Sea Dogs: The Black Spot from Black Sun Game Publishing.

Were Sea Dogs: The Black Spot in development?

Sea Dogs 4: Black Spot

Reading all the available news about the new project, one gets the impression that only concept art was made to collect money from the players without understanding how to develop a good game.

We decided to look into the situation and understand if Black Sun Game Publishing planned to develop Sea Dogs: The Black Spot, and how things are going with the project now.

Were Sea Dogs: The Black Spot in development?

Yuri (Ursus) Rogach, Alexey (ALexusB) Bobrovnikov, Eduard (Eddy) Zaitseva

We decided to collect in one video the information that we received from Yuri (Ursus) Rogach, Alexei (ALexusB) Bobrovnikov, Eduard (Eddy) Zaitsev, and Renat Nezametdinov.

Let's start with the comments of ALexusB, as a member of the Sea Dogs: Black Spot project.

ALexusB: There was an initial investor who sponsored the pre-production. You have all seen the video. How good or bad it turned out is a separate question. There is a serious level of elaboration on the design of the document with my participation as well. There is a script there. I won't voice it now. If it will be ever done — it's worth it.

It has a really interesting storyline. The techno demo is not fully done there. That is, the video that we saw — it is on the engine. Just a staged video. It is clear that the animation is all filmed for this video, but this video is from a game. That is, it can be further twisted, twirled, and developed on the Unreal Engine.

All models used in the video are the basis for a playable techno demo. Another thing is that this needs to be done to bring it to some kind of release. So that everything floats and shoots. The project is interesting. It's stalled now, I don't know for what reason.

It was interesting for me to participate in the project, I am ready to continue making Sea Dogs, I have a lot of ideas, understand how not to go too far in hardcore, and how to make a good non-empty world even without quests.

Unfortunately, yes, the Sea Dogs: Black Spot project was frozen. That is, it is already a matter of faith in development. To do a project of this level, you need a serious budget. It's not even about the team: you can recruit a team through freelancing and outsourcing. If there is a backbone — Lead Artist, Lead Developer, and Lead Designer, then the game can be brought to mind further. The main thing is funding. They apparently did not succeed, and the project stalled.

Volodymyr: I wonder what probability you give that we will eventually see Sea Dogs 4 in the future?

Were Sea Dogs: The Black Spot in development?

Sea Dogs 4: Black Spot

ALexusB: With such a name, I probably won't give it any chance, because I don't know Akella's condition now. The game and the series with the name Sea Dogs are tied to a specific publisher. The game itself ‘Sea Dogs 4’, most likely will appear. It will be made, maybe not even with us, maybe it will be made based on GTA. Just now they made a game about the wild west (Red Dead Redemption 2), suddenly their cock will peck, and they will do the same, but about the 17th century and pirates. Why not.

The producer of the project, Renat Nezametdinov, declined to comment and said that he had no plans to enter the information field yet.

Yuri (Ursus) Rogach confirmed the offer from Black Sun to participate in the project optionally in the evenings, but due to the heavy workload, he rejected this offer.

Edward (Eddy) Zaitsev commented on the project as follows:

“They (Black Sun) called me with a request to participate in the Sea Dogs: Black Spot project in the evenings. I refused this since such a serious project is not done in the evenings. I said, “If you get funding for this project, then I will get involved.” Because creating something on the go is not the case.

Again, to go with people who, as far as I knew earlier, receive income, not from the result, but the process, I didn’t want. We have different views on the methodology of work. I have already received offers of this kind after the Sea Dogs, as soon as this whole story with Akella ended, and we were released into free swimming.

I received offers on Kickstarter like “nothing needs to be done, we just use your name, we will raise money for Sea Dogs 4, and we will roll out some shit” and so on. I refused all this. Therefore, before the Black Sun attempt, I had doubts that the declared goals corresponded to reality. Doing all sorts of nonsense and flattering yourself with hopes — no. If I grabbed onto something, I will see it through to the end.”

Summing up:

  1. Project Sea Dogs: Black Spot has a significant amount of documentation;

  2. The script of the game was worked out;

  3. Project Sea Dogs: The Black Spot has the underlying Unreal Engine that was used to create the trailer, but it needs a lot of work to implement the game mechanics.

Were Sea Dogs: The Black Spot in development?

Sea Dogs 4: Black Spot

At the moment, the Sea Dogs: The Black Spot project is frozen and is waiting for an investor. After several unsuccessful attempts to announce the project, which negatively affected the prospects of Black Sun finding an investor, they decided not to enter the information field anymore until the issue of financing was resolved.

The fact that in addition to the concept art presented, Sea Dogs: The Black Spot was in development, discards the version popular on the Internet about a simple attempt by Black Sun to swindle fans for money.

Black Sun decided to take steps to revive the legendary Sea Dogs. This very fact causes great respect in us, as fans of the series. After all, the rest of the community did not dare to take the drastic actions that these guys took.

At the same time, we believe that the strategy chosen by Black Sun was unsuccessful, and the published information about the Sea Dogs: Black Spot project does not correspond to the declared project in terms of level.

The trailer of the project Sea Dogs: Black Spot shows the lack of a holistic vision of the future product and an understanding of the correct sequence of game development. Moreover, even if Black Sun can find a major investor, the result for a fixed amount of investment is likely to disappoint both the investor and the players.

Were Sea Dogs: The Black Spot in development?

Sea Dogs 4: Black Spot

It is important to understand that the presence of motivated and super-qualified people in the team, such as ALexusB, greatly increases the chances of the project succeeding. But the strategy that we saw in 2018 was not compiled and published by ALexusB, which means, alas, he cannot sufficiently influence the strategic decisions of Sea Dogs: Black Spot.

However, we wish Black Sun the best of luck in finding an investor and believe that having a new pirate-themed game is better than not having one.

We hope that other teams and studios will decide to create pirate-themed projects that will allow us, the players, to feel like Sea Dogs more than once.

We hope you found this article useful!

Learn more about the Corsairs Legacy - Historical Pirate RPG Simulator project and add it to your wishlist on the game's Steam page.


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