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"No, Frederic, it cannot be. I don't think much of our profession, but, contrasted with respectability, it is comparatively honest. No, Frederic, I shall live and die a Pirate King."
The Pirate King, The Pirates of Penzance

Not those ones. Not these, either. And, uh -- not them.

Dashing villains who lived free on the open sea, with a parrot on their shoulder, a cutlass in their hand and a chest full o' gold. Fond o' drinking and prone ta fights, out to live "a short life and a merry one." The pirates we know and love were greatly influenced by those of Peter Pan and Treasure Island. They tend to come in two varieties:

  • Marauding Brutes: Some pirates are major threats whenever they appear. Seeing the Jolly Roger on the horizon is bad news for the dashing, clean-cut heroes, who will soon have to deal with a wave of unwashed brutes intent on looting as much as they can, killing the crew after prolonged torture to ensure they aren't holding back treasure and pure cruelty as well, and… ahem… "abducting" the women. Generally the easy go-to bad guys for anything in The Cavalier Years. These pirates are pure evil. They have, in fact, thoroughly earned their Real Life designation hostes humani generis or, in literal Latin, "enemies of the human race". Real Life pirates would often cultivate this kind of image to instill fear and terror in their victims and targets, making for surrender quicker and easier.
  • Roguish Scoundrels: Pirates featured as dashing romantic heroes and rebels, ranging from the rather goofy to the totally rebellious; generally, they follow a code of honor. Frequently featured as The Pirates Who Don't Do Anything to prevent their romantic aura being tainted by them harming innocents. The Romantics were fond of this trope, as in Lord Byron's The Corsair. It appeared in Gilbert and Sullivan's The Pirates of Penzance with pirates who can not oppress an orphan (and swallow any and all claims to be an orphan) and are easily overcome by appealing to their loyalty to Queen Victoria.
    In Real Life, this type of pirate tended to overlap with Privateers (people commissioned by a government during wartime to capture enemy vessels or otherwise cause problems for enemy ships, and paid with the prizes they took). The Spanish viewed Sir Francis Drake as a pirate, and the British, John Paul Jones (not remotely that one). Many fictional pirates demonstrate some principles by preying only on their nation's enemies, or only the Evil Overlord's, etc., despite the lack of official letters of marque.

Both types are among The Oldest Ones in the Book, and can, indeed, be found in the same works. In fact, piracy is a very old tradition that dates back to the Late Bronze Age in the form of the Sea Peoples, a confederation of raiders from Europe and the Middle East that frequently attacked Ancient Egypt.

Pirate tropes include:

In fiction, pirates can be found primarily in the Caribbean, a few hundred years ago, but they pop up anywhere and everywhere so any seafaring hero can expect to meet pirates at least once whether in Feudal Japan or even Ancient Greece. Elizabethan-era privateers (such as the aforementioned Sir Francis Drake) used to be quite popular but have fallen out of favour in recent decades.

Space Pirates occur in the far future, sailing the ocean of space. They usually throw people out of the airlock rather than making them Walk the Plank, and may substitute some alien flier for the parrot.

Sky Pirates have flying vehicles but otherwise resemble the standard Pirate.

Friendly Pirates are a popular variant who have all the classic trappings of piracy but don’t bother to engage in any of the morally dubious piratical activities.

If the pirates are mixed up with the occult, expect voodoo, zombies and/or skeletons (sometimes including the pirates themselves), and cursed treasure.

Not to be confused with real pirates. Were you attacked by pirates around the 1700s, the "nicest" you could hope for would probably lean towards Chaotic Good—they would steal your things but might not harm you (likely for pragmatic reasons: a crew that got a reputation for accepting surrenders and not massacring prisoners would be more likely to see more surrenders in the future, making their "job" a whole lot safer and easier for them).

Modern day piracy is less covered in fiction, with the 1979 Soviet film Piraty XX veka ("Pirates of the 20th Century", one of the first real Soviet "action" films) and the Japanese anime Black Lagoon being some of the few rare examples. So far, the pirates currently active off the coast of Somalia have been interested in money, not lives (indeed, their "business model" is based on extorting ransom from the shipping companies), but the entire meme of pirates is in danger of becoming Harsher in Hindsight these days.

Note that in fiction, many Pirate Captains are presented as absolute masters of their ship, with The Mutiny being regarded as just as serious as on merchant or naval ships. In Real Life, the "lawless men"—who rebelled against the very notion of having masters—often constructed crude democracies. It was not uncommon for the captains of large, organized vessels had absolute command only in battle; out of battle, he could be freely deposed—and often marooned—for incompetence. Even those that did comprise the single authority on their ship could find themselves out of the job if they screwed up enough.

For some reason, there's a running joke about them being the arch-enemies of Ninjas.

Honored every September 19th with International Talk Like A Pirate Day. Reading/watching/playing any of the below works, at least in parrrt, would be a good way to celebrate.

See Pirate Tropes for a full list of tropes associated with pirates and their kin. Compare the Outlaw, the Western-themed equivalent of the pirates.


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  • Bones in the Bones Coffee "Coconut Rum" flavor is dressed in a pirate costume on a tropical island with a treasure chest full of "bootleg rum, fresh coconuts and the finest coffee beans in the world."

    Anime & Manga 
  • The main cast of Black Lagoon are an example of your average modern-day South-East Asian variety of pirate, and prefer AKs and pistols to swords and cutlasses — though in fact, Revy's signature weapon is a pair of local knock-offs of the Beretta 92FS called "Cutlasses," marked with a version of the Jolly Roger used by "Calico" Jack Rackham.
  • The Doraemon movies, Doraemon: Nobita's Great Adventure in the South Seas and Doraemon: Nobita's Treasure Island have the gang going on seafaring adventures and battling future pirates.
  • It is shown that England in Hetalia: Axis Powers was a pirate for awhile.
  • Kyouran Kazoku Nikki's tenth episode is 21 minutes of pirate absurdity. This on top of the normal absurdity the show already has. Interestingly, the episode is about the differing ideals of shows like One Piece where the lead pirates don't do anything and the traditional view. The traditional view wins.
  • Monster Musume has a whole race of pirates in the form of the aggressive Shark Mermaids. Or at least, they USED to be pirates and ne'er-do-wells way back when. Nowadays they've moved away from it, but that doesn't stop them from romanticizing the good ol' days and dressing up as pirates.
  • One Piece:
    • Chaotic Evil Brutes for some of the villains — a lot aren't actually pirates — but easily Chaotic Good Rogues for the Straw Hats and a few others.
    • In earlier depictions of One Piece ("Romance Dawn" and "Wanted" one-shots) pirates are described as being of two types: The "Morganeers", who are all about pillaging and looting, and the "Peace Mains", who are more about fun and games and beating the Morganeers for their loot. Oda intentionally avoided using those terms in the regular series, feeling they were a bit too on the nose. Although most One Piece pirates fall into one category or another early on, as the series progresses things get a bit more gray and some pirates straddled the moral line (although the Straw Hats remain staunchly in the second category).
    • The Straw Hats are SO Chaotic Good that they're never even shown (successfully) stealing loot. Lampshaded in the Skypiea arc, when they tries to steal a bag of gold... except that the owners of said gold had just decided to give it to them as a reward. Luffy was a better thief when he was a vagrant. The exception to this rule is Nami, a rather shameless and highly skilled thief and con artist.
    • Despite being one of the biggest pirate shows out there, it curiously averts several common Pirate Tropes, like Walk the Plank, Pirate Parrot, Eyepatch of Power, and Talk Like a Pirate. The latter is justified for Japanese language not really having "pirate talk", it is confirmed that we'll see an eyepatched pirate later in the story, and other animals like monkeys sometimes fulfill the Pirate Parrot role, but it is a bit weird that no-one ever walks the plank, given that half of the series' characters cannot swim. Also, the only known character with a peg leg actually got it after he stopped being a pirate.
  • Pokémon: The Series:
  • Mugen's backstory in Samurai Champloo features a group of pirates.
  • First episode of Slayers REVOLUTION has Lina Inverse laying waste to a group of pirates.
  • Captain Solo from Yu-Gi-Oh! ARC-V is an unimportant, goofy-looking Villain of the Week in an important episode. He's a soldier from Academia, acts and looks like a pirate and even has a pirate-themed crew and a pirate-themed Lockdown deck. He is, ironically or not, defeated by a kraken-themed Monster Card.

    Card Games 
  • The Drunk Quest expansion The 90 Proof Seas is mostly pirate themed including ship cards the players can obtain and a Pirate class card.
  • Yu-Gi-Oh! includes the Plunder Patroll, an archetype of pirate themed monsters. As their Punny Name suggests, they are also literal Trolls, and utilize tactics designed to disrupt and control the opponent's moves, tying into common impressions of trolls as people who behave in a manner that deliberately antagonizes others.

    Comic Books 
  • Asterix has a recurring crew of pirates that very much fall under Rogues. They try to be Brutes, but encounter the Gauls and get the crap beaten out of them every time they appear, if they're lucky (in one occasion their ship is blown up by Corsican cheese).
  • In Barbe-Rouge, the titular character is a ruthless and much feared pirate. The comic however soon focuses on his adopted son, who after some attempts at leading a honest life eventually becomes a Privateer, and more or less convinces his father to renounce his bloodthirsty ways. By the way, the pirate crew in Asterix are a parody of them, but the parody is now much better-known than the original.
  • Barracuda is set in the golden age of piracy, and many of the characters are pirates. However, for the most part, these pirates are not romantic rogues, but ruthless seagoing plunderers and murderers.
  • Batman: Batman has been a pirate in at least two stories: an Elseworlds story called Batman Leatherwing and an story in the mini-series The Return Of Bruce Wayne. Also, there's one of his villains, Captain Stingaree, A Pirate 400 Years Too Late.
  • De Cape et de Crocs features a crew of pirates. They are very quirky (prone to panic attacks whenever rabbits or metaphysics are mentioned, for instance), but their leader at least is appropriately ruthless and cunning. Too bad for him he gets constantly outwitted or outmatched by the heroes.
  • El Cazador was comic book from CrossGen. In the opening issue, the ship carrying Spanish noblewoman Donessa Cinzia Elena Marie Esperanza Diego-Luis Hidalgo and others of her family is attacked by pirate captain Blackjack Tom. The Donessa is one of the few survivors of the attack. She swears to hunt down Tom and rescue his prisoners. To accomplish this, she re-names her ship El Cazador ("The Hunter") and becomes a pirate herself, dubbed "Lady Sin" by her crew. The remaining issues of the series detail the beginnings of Lady Sin's quest as she forsakes her privileged past for life on the high seas.
  • Empowered had the pirate-themed villainous group "Advanced Restraining Research". A.R.R.!!
  • In Kid Colt, Outlaw #109, Colt battle the Barracuda and his crew: pirates who prey on coastal towns on the Gulf of Mexico.
  • Issue #13 and #14 of My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic (IDW) is a genuine pirate arc, as even the protagonists get into the spirit.
  • Nero: A regular cast member is Abraham Tuizentfloot, a dwarf who is a complete Cloudcuckoolander and thinks, dresses, talks and acts like he's a pirate. He attacks everybody with his sword, though he doesn't own a ship and can't even swim.
  • Nikolai Dante grew up as part of his mother's all female crew until she dumped him in a convent when he started reminding her of his father. When he returns to her, he takes up the life of a pirate captain with flair and panache, as befitting a character based on Errol Flynn. One of the antagonists of this arc is a man known as The Kraken, a ninja pirate.
  • When Dragon did a Ninja, Pirate, and Dinosaur issue, Nodwick and crew went up against a ship filled with ninja-pirates (an unbeatable combination). Who mounted their ship on top of a dinosaur.
    Ninja-Pirate Captain: We are the shadow that comes in the night and says "Arrr!"
  • Both types of pirate have appeared in Red Sonja, as enemies or allies as the situation dictates.
  • The Spirit has Long Jane Silver and her all-female crew.
  • Starman (DC Comics): In issue #55, "Taxicab Confessions", three characters tell the story of Jack and Mikaal facing off against Jarko, a Space Pirate, told in a "Rashomon"-Style. One version of the story (a homage to The Silver Age of Comic Books) has Jarko as this trope IN SPACE, complete with an eyepatch, hook hand and alien parrot.
  • Suske en Wiske: The albums De Geverniste Zeerovers, De Kleppende Klipper and De Regenboogprinses are pirate themed stories.
  • Swordquest: Waterworld: Captain Frost leads a crew of humanoid pirates on a planet entirely covered in water, on a boat carved entirely out of ice.
  • The Tintin stories The Secret of The Unicorn and Red Rackham's Treasure feature flashbacks to The Golden Age of Piracy, when Captain Haddock's ancestor Admiral Francis Haddock battled a pirate very similar to Calico Jack Rackham.
  • The Warlord: Captain Hawk, a.k.a. "the Sea Snake", is a fairly treacherous sometimes-ally of Travis Morgan.
  • Watchmen: Since superheroes exist, people don't bother reading about them in comics, so instead pirate comics are popular. The type depicted in "Tales of the Black Freighter" are definitely Chaotic Evil, and both the one issue we're shown, and the other issues described, are squarely of the dark and horrific type.
  • Wonder Woman (1942): Wonder Woman, Steve Trevor and the Holliday Girls once battled some Sky Pirates and their fight managed to attract the attention of a Clock Roach who found the whole thing so absurd it knocked the lot of them back to the Golden Age of Pirates with modified costumes, gear and memories to have a proper pirate fight, though the memory alteration did not work on Diana due to her ties to the truth and telepathic abilities.
  • X-Men: The Uncanny X-Men story "Kitty's Fairy Tale" has Kitty Pryde spinning a bedtime story to Colossus' kid sister. It stars Kitty as a heroic girl pirate and her X-Men compadres in various roles.
  • Y: The Last Man: Because of the shortage of food and medicine caused by the plague the Australian navy has turned to piracy — one of their spies even has an eyepatch. It later turns out that the Australians are actually trying to stop the pirates who are taking all the food in exchange for heroin.

    Comic Strips 
  • Little Nemo in Slumberland had a series of strips in which Nemo, Flip and the Princess are taken aboard a pirate ship, which in the end is sunk by the Slumberland navy.
  • In a Peanuts story line, Sally (Charlie Brown's sister) has lazy eye and has to wear an eye patch. Snoopy steals it and fantasizes about being a pirate. (Eventually, Sally gives Snoopy her eyepatch after her lazy eye is cured.)
  • The Phantom features The Phantom's arch-rivals, The Singh Brotherhood, a criminal organisation that used to be pirates. Nowadays they are landlubbers who work with more "modern" crimes like drug-dealing, blackmailing and kidnapping.

  • Steel Soul Saga: Steel Soul: Sweetie Belle needs a pirate costume for her play, and Rarity is helping make it. Sweetie picks an garish shade of red, because "he wants to look ugly so he scares everypony!” Sweetie Belle smirked as she brought down her hoof. The logic was impeccable."

    Fairy Tales 
  • In Fair Brow, the hero blames his loss of money on this.

    Films — Animation 
  • Ice Age: Continental Drift involves Sid, Manny, Diego, Scrat, and friends all being captured by evil pirates (all portrayed as prehistoric predatory animals) whose ship is made from an iceberg, and they all must find a way to escape them and head back home.
  • My Little Pony: The Movie (2017) has Captain Celaeno and her crew, a band of Lovable Rogues, help the heroes out at several points. They prefer to describe themselves as "swashbuckling treasure hunters".
  • Aardman Animations' film The Pirates! In an Adventure with Scientists, loosely based on the first book in Gideon DeFoe's The Pirates! In An Adventure With… series (see Literature). These guys are Roguish, but aspire to be Brutish.
  • Treasure Planet has space pirates. They're mostly of the Brutish variety, except for Silver, who is far more Rogueish than his literary inspiration.
  • VeggieTales made a movie titled The Pirates Who Don't Do Anything wherein the villains are Brutish whereas the titular protagonists are pirates who don’t do anything.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • The villains in Against All Flags are pirates, with the hero Brian Hawke (Errol Flynn) on a secret mission to infiltrate their base in the Outlaw Town of Diego Suarez and work out how to neutralize its defences.
  • The Black Pirate (1926) features Brutish pirates who murder their captives to Leave No Witnesses and hack rings off the fingers of corpses. The hero infiltrates them in order to have his revenge after they kill his father.
  • The title character of Captain Blood, whose heart still yearns for England.
  • The Crimson Pirate: Burt Lancaster has fun playing a Rogue.
  • A Fairly Odd Movie: Grow Up, Timmy Turner! has Timmy fighting a bunch of pirates for his birthday in the opening scene.
  • The Last Queen features Ottoman corsair Aruj "Barbarossa" (Dali Benssalah), known as Oruç Reis in Turkish, who fought Spaniards and took over the city-kingdom of Algiers.
  • Muppet Treasure Island is… well, the below but with muppets. While the original plot's obviously been mucked around with quite a lot, they play a lot of the dramatic moments completely straight. "Shiver My Timbers" is an especially chilling song, given the film.
    • And Long John Silver discusses the blurry line distinguishing pirates from privateers in his Villain Song:
    Now take Sir Francis Drake: The Spanish all despise him.
    But to the British, he's a hero, and they idolize him.
  • "Bully" Hayes in Nate and Hayes gives what might well be the core creed of the Roguish pirate:
    Hayes: Are you saying in that book that I'm a pirate?
    Clerk: (hesitantly) I suppose I am.
    Hayes: Good. Because I am one, and a damn good one. Oh, I never flew the skull and crossbones, that's for your fictioneers. But I have sought pleasure and profit in every port known to man without regard to any man's law. That's not to say I lack morals and standards. I got morals and standards. I never killed a man who didn't deserve it, I never cheated an honest man, I never pillaged and I never raped.
  • Peter Pan adaptations naturally feature Captain James Hook and his crew (sometimes a whole harbor populated by them). They include:
  • Pirates starring Walter Matthau, in which the trope is taken to the other end of the spectrum (i.e., the whole lot is dirty, vile, etc.) for comedic effect.
  • Pirates and its imaginatively named sequel, Pirates 2, XXX movies known for being, by porn standards, rather well-made, both cram in as many pirate cliches as they possibly can. However, the main characters are not pirates themselves but pirate hunters, tasked with hunting down and capturing (and having sex with) the eponymous buccaneers.
  • The Pirate Movie, starring Kristy MacNichol, which was a (very) loose adaptation of The Pirates of Penzance.
    • And the film adaption, Pirates of Penzance which played it straight. Well, as straight as anything based on Gilbert and Sullivan could be.
  • Pirates of the Caribbean:
    • Captain Jack Sparrow was apparently originally written as a fairly strait-laced character. Until Johnny Depp decided he was going to chuck Keith Richards into his portrayal.
    • Barbossa even has the accent, lampshaded in the third movie.
    • The first film in the series is notable for having both types of pirates, with Jack and his crew of living pirates being Roguish and Barbossa and his crew of undead pirates being Chaotic Evil.
      • In the second two, though, everyone is Roguish, pirates who might keep changing sides and tricking each other, but are on the whole much better than the East India Trading Company.
      • And in the fourth, we get Blackbeard himself, very much Chaotic Evil. In terms of main characters, Jack and Barbossa both vary between the types, with Jack leaning towards Roguish and Barbossa towards Brutish.
  • The Dread Pirate Roberts in The Princess Bride. He's a Brute: he never takes prisoners, always killing everyone aboard the ships he captures. That's what everyone thinks, anyway. "Takes no prisoners" does not mean "kills everyone." It means "if you resist, you're dead, but otherwise we'll just take your stuff and leave." Roberts cultivated the reputation so that no one would resist having their stuff taken. It helps that no actual piracy is shown, and the only pirate in the movie is the current Roberts.
  • In Stardust, we meet a group of Sky Pirates. Led by a Camp Gay Robert De Niro. They don't do any piracy, but they do do some smuggling. Which is also illegal, but perfectly safe to put on the silver screen.
  • The pirates in the 1976 film Swashbuckler are definitely Roguish as they help to bring down a corrupt governor.
  • Treasure Island: The 1950 Walt Disney movie version of this featured British actor Robert Newton as Long John Silver. His wildly over the top performance as the ragged, full-bearded, wild-eyed, sinister but charismatic pirate leader was purely his own creation and quite unlike the actor himself. (He had been considered for the role of the role of the handsome, brooding Heathcliff in the 1939 version of Wuthering Heights, narrowly losing out to Laurence Olivier.) His distinctive Argggh growl and English West Country accent have been imitated by hundreds of millions of people over the decades. It is unlikely that any line of recorded cinema can match its popularity.
    • Given that Robert Louis Stevenson was in the West country for his health and used two pubs in Bristol as models for those in Treasure Island and given the distinctive "arrr" local accent, Robert Newton wasn't that far from the truth.
  • Yellowbeard: The title character is a Brutish pirate if ever there was one.

  • The 13 ½ Lives of Captain Bluebear contains Minipirates; 4-foot tall pirates born with eye-patches, hook hands and peg legs, who would be the scourge of the seas, if they were big enough for anyone to notice them.
  • Alex and the Ironic Gentleman has pirates as a main theme.
  • Bertolt Brecht wrote a "Ballad of the Pirates" in his early years. Later he followed with "Pirate Jenny", otherwise known as "The Black Freighter".
  • Invoked in Patricia A. McKillip's The Bell at Sealey Head, Dalia wants Gwyneth to write about pirates. When Raven objects that pirates are uncouth and wouldn't know what to do with tea—probably use the teapot to drink rum—Dalia objects that she wants nice pirates who were driven to it and would be glad to give it up.
  • Edgar Rice Burroughs's Pirates of Venus, Tanar of Pellucidar, and Tarzan at the Earth's Core; also the black pirates of The Gods of Mars.
  • Captain Blood: His Odyssey: Peter Blood, an honest man of true character and a humane doctor, is wrongfully imprisoned for treason under the laws of King James, and deported from Britain to a tropical colony at Bridgetown where he is sold as a slave at auction. Soon he encounters romantic inspiration, conflict, injustice, and ultimately finds himself in charge of an armada of pirate ships of various flags and national alliances, becoming the famous and invincible Captain Blood, the most honorable and remarkable buccaneer throughout the South Seas.
  • Les Clients du Bon Chien jaune (Clients of the Good Yellow Dog tavern) by Pierre Mac Orlan. The story starts very much like Treasure Island (which had a big influence on Mac Orlan's writer career). A poor young boy embarks on a ship, only to discovers said ship's horrible secret: the crew is actually made of pirates, who don skeleton disguises and mock up the boat as a ghost ship in order to scare the crap out of the prey ships, which makes them easy to subdue. Then they mercilessly slaughter the crews.
  • Conan the Barbarian has been a pirate more than once in his career. In addition to his membership in the Red Brotherhood, he has also captained several ships as well as being the lover and right hand of Belit, the Queen of the Black Coast, in the story of the same name.
  • Lord Byron's The Corsair narrates the story of the corsair or privateer Conrad, how he was in his youth rejected by society because of his acts and his later war against humanity (excepting women).
  • Maquesta Kar-Thon, captain of the Perechon, and her crew in the Dragonlance novels are Roguish pirates, rebelling against the oppressive Dragon Highlords conquering the continent. After the War of the Lance ended, she and her crew gave up piracy, and instead became seafaring mercenaries.
  • In Alethea Kontis's Enchanted, "far-to-go" Thursday ran off and married a pirate.
  • In Forgotten Realms novels, as usual, all variants are represented—including Brutish, Roguish, and Chaotic Neutral pirates. One of latter captains, among other achievements, was given "elf-friend" status, got imprisoned for debauch in Wretched Hive sort of port where tavern brawls are so common normally no one gives a damn and essentially adopted drow mage (and Lolth priestess) as a daughter. There's also group named "Wolves of the Waves" …and it's quite definitely not a metaphor.
  • Gustaf Drake in The Freebooter of the Baltic, apparently based on a historical figure.
  • The second of Scott Lynch's Gentleman Bastard books gets his heroes involved with pirates.
  • In William Alexander's Goblin Secrets, river pirates are, according to the story, the cause of Graba's lost legs.
  • In John C. Wright's The Hermetic Millennia, one Chimera comments on how the lower class had cheap literature concentrating on Rags to Royalty Rescue Romance. Pirates were one possible villain.
  • In Rick Riordan's The Heroes of Olympus book The Mark of Athena, Chysaor. He intercepts them on their quest.
  • In Poul Anderson and Gordon R. Dickson's Hoka stories, some of them decide to be Pirates! When Alex Jones foils their plot to loot a city, the mayor suggests that actually, they think it would be kind of fun. Being Hokas, they agree to give back their plunder after they loot the city. (What do you take them for, thieves?) And the looting of the city becomes an annual event.
  • The Liveship Traders: Kennit is a Brute thanks to a severe Lack of Empathy. However, his methods cause people to think of him as Rogue—he spends a lot of time attacking slavers.
  • The corsairs that Aragorn, Gimli, and Legolas fight in The Lord of the Rings. They're given more face time in the film, but they're firmly established as Brutish.
  • In Edgar Rice Burroughs's The Monster Men, pirates attack the boat on the deserted island.
  • The eponymous Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle was once married to a pirate, who built her an upside-down house, but he passed away some years before the first book. He left her a Treasure Chest full of magic potions, and cures for kids' bad habits. (The Piggle-Wiggles never had any children themselves.)
  • There are pirates in My Big Fat Supernatural Wedding. Cursed pirates, yet.
  • Growltiger, "the terror of the Thames", in T. S. Eliot's book of cat poems, Old Possum's Book of Practical Cats.
  • Tim Powers' On Stranger Tides, featuring Blackbeard himself (see Real Life). Loosely adapted into Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides.
  • In Catherynne M. Valente's Orphan's Tales, Tomomo's (or, as she prefers to be known, Tommi's) crew are Roguish. They're made up entirely of female monsters, and they steal things, including more people for the crew, like Sigrid. Most of their actual skullduggery is off-screen until Sigrid gains the captaincy, and then they get in trouble with a shapeshifter and get swallowed by a sea monster.
  • In Over the Wine-Dark Sea these are a recurring peril. Most of the Mediterranean is in constant war and the Rhodian Navy can only handle so much.
  • In Peter Pan, Peter's primary foes are Captain James Hook and the crew of the Jolly Roger.
  • Gideon Dafoe's The Pirates! In an Adventure With… series, featuring the Pirate Captain and his crew (none of whom are named, only given descriptions such as the Pirate with a Scarf) having wacky misadventures with famous historical figures including Charles Darwin, Karl Marx, and Napoleon Bonaparte. They are portrayed as somewhat lecherous and violent, but generally good-hearted.
  • The Princess Bride: The Dread Pirate Roberts. As mentioned in the Film section, he plays at Brutish while really being Roguish; he prefers using fear instead of actually slaughtering his victims.
  • The Pyrates: Comic novel archly highlighting all the pirate tropes.
  • The gamebook Sail with Pirates does, in fact, contain frequent run-ins with these—and these guys are the gritty realistic type. At one point, the protagonist can even get enrolled into a pirate crew for a while.
  • Many, many of Emilio Salgari's books. The Black Corsair series, the Pirates of Malaysia series, the Pirates of Bermuda series… and the list goes on.
  • Andre Norton's Scarface (historical) and the Jacks (Space Pirates) in many of her science fiction novels.
  • A Song of Ice and Fire:
    • While the Greyjoys are somewhere between this and Norse Raiders, Euron "Crow's Eye" Greyjoy is explicitly stated to be a pirate, among other things, before his first appearance. He's very much a Brutish one, raiding, killing and raping as he pleases, and amply earning his reputation as The Dreaded.
    • In a similar vein, the islands of the Stepstones are full nests of pirates and corsairs that are an endless source of danger for ships passing through or near them.
    • Salladhor Saan is a wealthy Lysene buccaneer who commands a large fleet of pirate ships, operating mostly in the Narrow Sea between Westeros and Essos. It's mentioned he's more of an opportunist than a dedicated pirate — besides outright pirating (which he absolutely does), he's also a sellsail (a ship-based mercenary) for those with coin, and even does honest trading and banking if there's profit in it. He's a much more Roguish type — he's well-mannered and polite, incredibly flamboyant (the only things more gaudy than his colorful ships are his expensive clothes) and not dishonorable, in his own way. He also comes for a long line of professional pirates.
  • A group of extremely brutish pirates show up as antagonists in the third Spellsinger novel, Day of the Dissonance. Naturally, they're led by a Pirate Parrot. The same pirates show up again in the sixth book, this time led by the original captain's brother, a pirate parrot accountant.
  • Stationery Voyagers has the very Brutish Yehtzig Pirate League, who take Villain by Default to extremes. They not only rape and pillage, they also take over the drug trades of worlds, establish candy factories as drug fronts, hijack educational curricula, spread infertility viruses to wipe out Stationery types they don't like, and try to collapse entire societies by forcing women to have more out-of-wedlock births than they can financially sustain. They don't always rape directly, but will shoot men and women with darts that contain weaponized Viagra. And for those religious idealists who continue to stand in the way… a good bullet almost always seems to do the trick. Oh yeah… they also consider themselves kinda-sort-of a devil-worshipping cult as well.
  • The Amazons in Swallows and Amazons play at being Roguish pirates, but they're just kids messing about in boats. They also pretend "Captain Flint" is a Brute.
  • The Takers, a Two Fisted Tale by Jerry Ahern, has the protagonists having to battle the modern-day version when the owner of the yacht they chartered plans to get rid of it in an insurance scam. Which would be made more authentic by their deaths.
  • Douglas Morgan's Tiger Cruise takes the modern route, and depicts a Navy destroyer beset by a typhoon and a well-equipped band of Indonesian pirates. They don't fit any of the typical traits of Brutish, but they're definitely not Roguish.
  • Treasure Island is set in the days of sailing ships and pirates and tells of the adventures of Jim Hawkins and his search for the buried treasure of an evil pirate, Captain Flint.
  • Vampirates is all about pirate vampires.
  • In Seanan McGuire's Velveteen vs. series, Jolly Roger derives his superpowers from the collective notion of "Pirate".
  • Warhammer 40,000: In Nick Kyme's novel Salamander, the Divided We Fall between the Salamander and the Marines Malevolent culminates in the discovery that the Marines are out to resupply themselves from a Mechanicus delerict. Or loot it, as the Salamanders put it, accusing them of being pirates.
  • The Witchlands has two groups of pirates, the Baedyeds and the Red Sails. The former are a nation of people from a desert called the Baedyed Sand Sea, who turned to piracy after their land was conquered, while the Red Sails are a more mixed group. It's generally agreed that it's better to be attacked by the Baedyeds than the Red Sails, but that's because the Baedyeds will keep you alive and sell you into Gladiator Games, while the Red Sails are less concerned with leaving survivors.

    Live-Action TV 
  • The pirates in Black Sails are overwhelmingly brutish, and include some Historical Domain Characters from The Golden Age of Piracy with reputations for brutality, such as Jack Rackham and Charles Vane.
  • Several episodes of El Chapulín Colorado are in the The Golden Age of Piracy setting, often with Chapulin fighting evil captain Alma Negra (Black Soul).
  • CSI once had a lobotomized victim show up dressed and talking like a Roguish pirate (headscarf, eyepatch, earring and all) and insisting on being called "Captain Jack".
  • On SpikeTV's Deadliest Warrior, they had a Caribbean pirate fight one-on-one against a French knight. The pirate manages to defeat the knight with his superior firepower.
  • Doctor Who:
    • Episodes "The Smugglers", "Enlightenment", and, of course, "The Pirate Planet", as well as the novels "The Resurrection Casket" and "The Pirate Loop".
    • Doctor Who and the Pirates seems to start off as Roguish, with a gallivanting, musically-inclined band of pirates. The Doctor even sings along, at times! And then the lead pirate makes a man eat his own tongue…
    • Season 6 has pirates in "The Curse of the Black Spot". According to the crew, they are definitely of the Brutish variety.
    • And then there's "The Time Meddler"; in those days, "Vikings" meant Norse pirates.
  • Game of Thrones:
    • The people of the Iron Islands, the Ironborn, are a whole society of them. The naval skills of their population are unmatched and they enjoy great mobility due to their ships. They have a unique culture centered on maritime raiding and pillaging other peoples.
      • Balon Greyjoy, as a proud Ironborn, to the point their family words basically amount to "We steal your shit and rape anyone we don't murder!"
      • Dagmer Cleftjaw is an Ironborn; being a pirate is his whole life.
      • Black Lorren, like the other Ironborn raiders.
    • Salladhor Saan, obviously. He says he's a pirate often enough and commands a pirate fleet.
    Salladhor: You think I'm insulted? I am a pirate. I'm an excellent pirate.
  • House of the Dragon has the forces of Craghas "The Crabfeeder" Drahar, who attack ships in the islands of the Stepstones on behalf of the Triarchy of the Free Cities of Essos and leave survivors to be eaten by crabs. King Viserys Targaryen doesn't treat such threat very seriously and House Velaryon and their fleet take it upon themselves to deal with it, with the welcome help of Daemon Targaryen.
  • The Hamster Wheel: I call her Julia Gill-aaard!
  • Haven: Duke is a downplayed modern version of the second variety; being a Venturous Smuggler with his own cargo ship who makes a living procuring and transporting illegal goods, running afoul of the law as he does so. Despite having a Scoundrel Code, he's the Villain by Default in the first couple of seasons, as much for his lack of respect for the law as the fact he and Nathan are childhood enemies. Visually, he fits the bill, with a Sailor's Ponytail and beard in later seasons, as well as a variety of tattoos, and large, billowy shirts. Season 3's "Burned" is basically one long Lampshade Hanging of this, when he befriends a young Troubled girl by cracking pirate jokes. She later uses her Compelling Voice to make him her playmate, and insists he play pirates with her. It's revealed not only can Duke affect a flawless accent, he owns all the garments to be Dressed to Plunder, as well as a bust with a Seadog Beard to put them on. For...reasons.
  • In the LazyTown episode that the page quote comes from, the children have been playing Roguish pirates, and are shown a history book that tells them about Rottenbeard, a Brutish pirate who once victimised LazyTown and stole a corner of a stone containing a message from the town's founder, then was driven off by a hero who bears a suspicious resemblance to both Sportacus and a ninja. Despite him being Brutish, the kids are impressed, so Robbie decides to take advantage of the kids' pirate fever by dressing as Rottenbeard and getting them to 'help' him look for the missing corner, which he has made a mock-up of that makes the message say "LazyTown should always be lazy".
    • Fred Perry, author of the comic Gold Digger, actually made a short animation sketch of the first part of said episode's song, featuring his Voltron Pirate Ninja Leprechaun characters. Apparently, he actually bought the rights to do it legally, despite it being a test animation, and yes that's a ninja doing pelvic thrusts with a katana/shovel strapped to his crotch.
  • Also on British TV in the '80s was Long John Silver's Return to Treasure Island, which with modern sensibilities, contrasted "evil" Silver, who looted and pillaged with "good guy" Trelawney who owned a whole plantation full of slaves. Better yet, silver was played by the largest Large Ham of them all, BRIAN BLESSED!!!!!. Shiver Me Timbers!
  • The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power: The old man from Halbrand's group lost at sea warns against signaling the approaching ship because they could be ruthless corsairs who'd rather skin people alive than help them.
  • Once Upon a Time gives us another rendition of Captain Hook, who wafts between the two types while strutting about in tight leather trousers.
  • Our Flag Means Death is a romantic comedy about Stede Bonnet, the "Gentleman Pirate", and his real-life partnership with the notorious Blackbeard. Also featured are fellow historical pirates Israel Hands ("Izzy" in the show) and Calico Jack Rackham.
  • QI did a segment on real-life pirates and the differences from their fictional portrayals. For one thing, rules on pirate ships tended to be very strict, including "lights out at 8pm sharp", "no playing music on a Sunday", "no smuggling women aboard", any woman who did happen to be on board and was raped, her rapist "shall suffer present death", etc. It was also pointed out that the Captain only had authority in combat, and in virtually all other situations the Quartermaster was the one in charge, and most major decisions tended to be made democratically. Also, none of them spoke in the stereotypical pirate accent.
  • On Rutland Weekend Television, guest George Harrison was extremely disappointed to find out there wasn't going to be a pirate sketch in the episode. That didn't stop him from dressing like a pirate, talking like a pirate, and even turning his performance of his hit song "My Sweet Lord" into a rousing sea shanty.
  • Super Sentai:
    • The 2011 season is the pirate-themed Kaizoku Sentai Gokaiger. (Kaizoku means pirate.) It's an anniversary series too, but pirates is the predominant theme. The Gokaigers themselves are Roguish.
    • Also, there are plenty of series where pirates show up where you wouldn't expect them. In Tensou Sentai Goseiger, one sea animal-based Mecha Expansion Pack gives the main robot a pirate theme.
  • There was a pretty faithful version of Treasure Island on British TV in either the late '70s or early '80s. The theme song was an extended version of Sixteen men on the Dead Man's Chest, including the lines "No more of the crew were left alive, that put to sea with seventy-five".
  • In 1990 a TV movie of Treasure Island was aired staring Charlton Heston as Long John, Christopher Lee as Blind Pew and Christian Bale as Jim Hawkins.
  • The BBC version of Treasure Island with Eddie Izzard.

  • Abney Park has a Steampunk image related to the dashing, romantic Roguish pirates. They are mostly awesome Airship Pirates.
  • The Arrogant Worms have "The Last Saskatchewan Pirate", who, according to the song, plunders ships on the Saskatchewan river, "stealing wheats and barley and all the other grains". Including, somehow, from the "mighty shores" of Regina (which is nowhere near the river but does include Wascana Lake).
  • Alestorm are a Pirate Metal band. Yes, they are as awesome as they sound.
  • Emilie Autumn has always had one pirate captain since the first Asylum tour in 2007. The first was Captain Vecona who was also the Asylum seamstress and left the Bloody Crumpets after the first 2008 tour. The second was Captain Maggot who took over in fall 2008, she appears to be far more popular of a captain owing to her more pirate-y feel including being a drunkard who speaks like a pirate and having a costume that looks more like a pirate. She also is a circus performer in the real world, during the tours she stilt walks and hula-hoops… EA's shows take place in a victorian asylum...
  • Captain Dan & the Scurvy Crew are a Pirate rap crew of good lyrical skill and catchy beats.
  • The Child Ballad Captain Ward and the Rainbow, about a pirate captain and his fight against the king's ship, the Rainbow. After winning the fight, he sends the Rainbow home with the message that the King may reign on land, but Ward is king of sea!
  • Flogging Molly has some songs about pirates.
  • "Captain Kidd" by the Canadian celtic-rock band Great Big Sea.
  • Cosmo Jarvis gives us Gay Pirates, who have the misfortune to be sailing with a bunch of the first type. "I hope they didn't tie up your hands as tight as mine…"
  • Svarta Malin in the Povel Ramel song of the same name.
  • German metal band Running Wild is one of the first metal bands to pick up the pirate image, starting with their third album Under Jolly Roger. Their songs on the subject take cues from Roguish pirates.
  • The Shlosharim, an Israeli pop trio from the late 1960s recorded a song titled "Were I a Pirate," about a man fantasizing of being a Roguish pirate for his beloved.
    But I am no pirate, my beauty, or a bandit,
    But one man standing at your gate,
    Standing there in this lonely night
    With no sword on his thigh.
  • A Filk Song by Tom Smith, "Hey, It's Can(n)on" has Hermione Granger, in response to learning that her birthday is also Talk Like a Pirate Day, become a Roguish, with Harry and Ron as her "young stallions".
    "Hermione Granger, the Pirate Queen, the pride of Gryffindor!"
  • In songs, of Soviet authors, pirate motives were common (some more here):
    • Bulat Okujava "Когда воротимся мы в Портленд" (When we'll be back to Portland...)
    • Vladimir Vysotsky "Еще не вечер" (It ain't 'til it's over), "Пиратская песня" (Pirates' song)
    • Garik Sukachev "Моя бабушка курит трубку" (My granny smokes a pipe)
  • Tiësto has the song "He's A Pirate", made especially for Pirates of the Caribbean.
  • Australian children's music group The Wiggles have Captain Feathersword, sometimes known as the "fifth Wiggle". He's definitely The Pirates Who Don't Do Anything type, though he can tickle you to death.
  • Other german metal band with a pirate image was Zed Yago, which was the first pirate metal band with a female singer.


    Pro Wrestling 
  • In 1995, Carl Ouelett (formerly known as Pierre, of The Quebecers) was repackaged as Jean-Pierre Lafitte, a Cajun pirate who wore an Eyepatch of Power.note  He was quickly put into a feud with Bret Hart, and was originally booked to end Kevin "Diesel" Nash's one-year title reign. However, Executive Meddling on the part of Shawn Michaels saw that not only did Lafitte lose the match (in his hometown of Montreal), but was then buried for the remainder of his WWF tenure.
  • Ten years later, Paul Burchill, the protege of William Regal discovered that he was a descendant of Edward Teach, aka "Blackbeard", and decided to adopt a pirate persona to honor his heritage (this is all Kayfabe). The writers were attempting to cash-in on the success of Pirates of the Caribbean, but Vince McMahon had apparently never even heard of POTC and didn't think that pirates were marketable anymore, and the (very over) character was quietly dropped. Wrestling fans are still reeling from this.
  • The Drunken Swashbuckler and Salty The Deckhand of the Pro Wrestling Syndicate are Roguish, as their misdeeds are played for laughs.
  • Prior to winning the World Of STARDOM title, 15th century captain themed entrance attire was a trademark of "Pirate Princess" Kairi Hojo. Even after the belt, her music was only less obvious in its Pirates Of The Caribbean influence than Burchill's. Despite taking on a more subdued look she still exploded when Hudson Envy suggested Hojo was not a pirate.
  • WrestleMania 36 in 2020 seems to be going "full sail ahead" with the pirate theme having announced that their event will be hosted at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa Bay (a stadium with a built-in pirate ship including pyrotechnic cannons) whilst basing their logo on a pirate flag.

    Tabletop Games 
  • Pirates in roleplaying games... and thar's yet to be a tip o'the hat to 7th Sea, an RPG mechanically oriented for piratical adventures.
  • Dungeons & Dragons has some whenever salt (or sometimes even fresh) water is in sight.
    • AD&D2 got slightly different kits Pirate/Outlaw in The Complete Fighter's Handbook, Buccaneer in The Complete Thief's Handbook, Pirate in Player's Options.
    • 3.5 has a prestige class called Dread Pirate. The player must choose which of the two kinds of pirates he wishes to be; honorable pirates gain bonuses to two-weapon fighting and inspiring allies, and dishonorable pirates gain sneak attack and intimidation bonuses.
    • D&D Fifth Edition offers a standard Sailor option as a background, with Pirate as a variant—clearly leaning towards the Brute side, as the primary benefit is a lethal reputation.
    • Eberron:
      • This is the hat of the Lhazaar Principalities. Numerous sources have noted that legitimate Lhazaarite merchantmen will not hesitate to engage in piracy if the opportunity arises or if they are down on their luck.
      • The airships of the setting also open the door to Sky Pirates, though getting the funds to purchase and man an airship, and controlling one is quite difficult without the Mark of Storm, makes this an expensive proposition.
  • Exalted: The Lintha. A family of terrifying, demon-descended, bloodline-obsessed, super-powerful buccaneers. Who make you eat your shipmates. They will normally leave a survivor — just one — to spread the tales of their viciousness and bloodlust. And the actual reason that they're pirates is because they view the idea of actually producing things for themselves as beneath them; you either steal it, have slaves (captured in raids) make it, or trade for it in stuff you stole or had slaves make.
  • The now out-of-print roleplaying game Furry Pirates was about... well, furry pirates.
  • GURPS:
    • The Discworld Roleplaying Game has a campaign setting, the Brown Islands, which are full of pirates. And also of tourists. And, therefore, also of pirate-themed taverns, where some of the pirates occasionally get jobs as "local colour" when the piracy isn't doing so well. As this suggests, most of them are a skewed Discworld version of Roguish (the Pirates' Code is complicated enough that they've been known to press-gang contract lawyers), although there are also Brutes available if the PCs need to be seriously menaced.
    • Naturally, GURPS Swashbucklers deals extensively with pirates of both Roguish and Brutish style.
  • in Wasteland 2010, Captain Cutthroat "is every inch a stereotypical pirate", complete with Eyepatch of Power, Talk Like a Pirate speech pattern and robotic Pirate Parrot. Beware that pointing this out to him is his Berserk Button.
  • Hollow Earth Expedition: The supplement Mysteries of the Hollow Earth describes pirates as a distinct culture in the Hollow Earth. They sail everything from Roman triremes to 18th century galleons.
  • Iron Kingdoms has its share, from the various undead and living pirates that are in service to the Cryx Nightmare Empire (All Brutes to man/Ogrun/animated corpse/ghost/goat-woman), to the motley crews that plunder along the Broken Coast that can be Roguish or Brutes. Lastly there is the Talion Charter, an alliance between 3 of the nastiest pirate captains; Fiona the Black, one of the most influential members of decentralized cult dedicated to jerkass goddess of magic. Broadsides Bart, a Captain Hook-expy with shotgun instead of a hook who also happens to be secretly a privateer doing dirty work for the local navy power that publicly professes neutrality. Lastly the founder of the group, Captain Phinneus Shae, a renegade merchant navy warcaster that has considerable bounty on his head from his former employers, and through his banker may in fact be doing literal wetwork for the landlocked Dwarven kingdom.
  • Pathfinder has the Shackles, essentially a pirate paradise. It has been thoroughly explored in both an Adventure Path, a Pathfinder Adventure Card Game base set, and a whole line of accessories. The PCs become involved in a factional fight between Roguish and Brutish pirates.
  • The Pirates Constructible Strategy Game; Pirates are represented by a generic faction based on their traditional portrayal in media, and later sets introduced variants such as Muslim Corsairs, Hollywood Voodoo practicing Ghost Pirates, and even Submarine Pirates straight out of Jules Verne.
  • In Rocket Age Mars' silt seas have a wide variety of pirates and corsairs, from tribesmen looking to make a little money on the side, to proud soldiers who have lost their kingdoms and are seeking to found their own.
  • Talislanta has the Mangar Corsairs and the Gao-Din Sea Rogues. The former are marauding brutes, while the latter are roguish scoundrels.
  • Warhammer:
    • Dark Elves are frequent pirates. They engage in piracy partly for the sake of survival (their homeland of Naggaroth has very little arable land, so they steal resources from other races and take them as slaves), partly to keep themselves freshly supplied with slaves and partly out of sheer malice for everyone else in the world.
    • The Pirate Principality of Sartosa is an island city that collapsed into anarchy when a mercenary army sent to hold decided they'd rather be pirates instead, and has become the most notorious nest of seafaring outlaws in the Old World.
    • Long Drong's Slayer Pirates embrace all accoutrements of stereotypical golden age piracy, complete with the bandannas, hook hands, peg legs, eyepatches, flintlock pistols (notably for Slayers, as they normally eschew all ranged weaponry), rum, sea shanties, and a skull and crossbones flag.
    • Clan Skurvy is a nautically-oriented Skaven clan that has made its fortune by sailing the seas and robbing anything they find upon the waves, earning them a respectable amount of power despite the fact that every rat on a Skurvy ship can be counted on to be planning mutiny.
    • Dreadfleet is a spin-off game packed with pirates and piratical tropes. It recreates the epic voyage of Pirate Prince Jaego Roth and his Grand Alliance of pirate lords to stop the raids of Vampire Pirate Count Noctilus and his Dreadfleet from out of the Galleon's Graveyard — an aquatic pocket dimension of gloom and misery something like a dark fantasy version of the Bermuda Triangle. Roth's home port, notably, is the Pirate Principality of Sartosa.
  • Warhammer 40,000: Ork Freebooterz are Orks who have taken a life of plunder and pillaging. Their banner is the "Jolly-Ork", and many of them dress like stereotypical pirates. They straddle the line between the two types — on the one hand, their flamboyance and piratical stereotypes, together with the way the Orks serve as the setting's crazy comic relief, peg them as Rogues. On the other, being Orks, they're also violent, murderous thugs who'll raid, burn, and pillage as they please and carelessly slaughter anyone in their way, putting them more in the Brute category.

  • Gilbert and Sullivan's The Pirates of Penzance. While they spend most of the play as comical Roguish pirates their songs indicate some very nasty behavior beforehand.
  • Growltiger, "the terror of the Thames", in Cats.
  • The Threepenny Opera features the song "Pirate Jenny", in which Jenny fantasizes about pirates descending on the town, making her their queen, and killing off all the people who have treated her badly.
    You gentlemen can watch while I'm scrubbing these floors
    And I'm scrubbing these floors while you're gawking...
  • Captain Sabertooth is Norway's biggest and most successful franchise; it centers around the black-clad pirate king (and self-declared "King of the Seven Seas") Captain Sabertooth, and his crew. Starting out as a series of theatrical musicals, the pirates now appear in books, comics, TV series and movies.
  • The Pirate Queen. Historically, Grace insisted that she operated a "trade of maintenance", but the musical is very blunt in calling her a pirate.

    Theme Parks 

    Video Games 
  • Assassins Creed IV has the past protagonist be Edward Kenway, a pirate/Assassin (before he settled down and had a son who would become a Templar). Unlike Assassin's Creed III, where naval missions were scripted, the high seas in IV will be open for exploration and pillaging. One of the trailers even has Blackbeard refer to Edward Kenway with reverence and fear, even though he definitely fits the Rogue. According to the backstory, Kenway was originally a British privateer until the practice was abolished, at which point he chose to make his own way. Note also, that Blackbeard himself is actually a surprising Rogue. He just realized that the Dread Pirate Roberts trick works GREAT. You actually see him shift from a reasonable guy, to his Game Face, and then back when off duty.
  • Most of the enemies in Captain Silver.
  • In Cossacks: European Wars, the English campaign is all about the Golden Age of piracy. More specifically, the player controls English corsairs who attack or ransom Dutch and Spanish ships or colonies in the Caribbean, and also fight against pirates. There's also the Dey (Algeria) campaign of the Expansion Pack The Art of War, which has the play Ottoman corsairs fighting against some Mediterranean pirates in addition to aggressive neighbors and European powers (Spain, more precisely).
  • The iOS game Crimson Steam Pirates developed by Bungie (yes, that Bungie) takes place in an Alternate History where piracy lasted well into the steam age. The events take place in the late 19th century. The player takes on the role of Captain Thomas Blood, an up-and-coming pirate who quickly rises from commanding a slow, weak ship into having a small flotilla behind him, even adding a well-armed zeppelin to his air fleet. It's not clear if the events take place during the American Civil War, as both the USA and the CSA are present, or if the war ended with the Confederacy remaining separate. Britain, France, and Spain are also powers in the area. Besides steamers, the game also includes combat aircraft, including zeppelins and machinegun-armed aeroplanes, and submarines. Presumably, everything is steam-powered, including submarines. You also meet several Historical Domain Characters including Mark Twain (an expert navigator), Jules Verne (who lends you his hot air balloon for some Sky Piracy), and Nikola Tesla (who gives you a power electric superweapon). The game tries to create an atmosphere of life on the high seas with the appropriate music (reminiscent of Pirates of the Caribbean) although with a definite Steam Punkish feel.
  • Dawn of War Retribution has Kaptin Bludflagg and his band of freebooter Orks as a playable faction. He's likely to say Argh as much as Waargh, calls his crew by mister, and even wears a pirate hat.
  • The Kremlings in Donkey Kong Country games are always pirates, but they've never really looked the part. Except for the pirate-themed sequel, where the enemies undergo a superficial change that gives them a more gritty, aggressive look. No explanation is ever provided for why they undergo this change (or why it never carries over), but it looks cool. To see the difference, compare the original's standard mooks Kritter with the sequel's Klomp, or the former's King K. Rool with the latter's Kaptain K. Rool.
    • Of course, this series is just one example of how much developer [[Creator/Rare Rareware]] loves all things pirate. Banjo-Kazooie also features them (and began life as a completely separate project starring a young boy draming of becoming one, and their most recent (and most ambitious) game is Sea of Thieves.
  • Dubloon is an RPG about pirates and their conflict with The Navy.
  • The Elder Scrolls:
    • Cyrus the Restless from the series' spin-off Action-Adventure game Redguard is of the Lovable Rogue variety. He also might be an incarnation of the Redguard/Yokudan god, the HoonDing, the "Make Way" god who manifests whenever the Yokudan/Redguard people need a place to live.
    • Oblivion:
      • A pirate ship and her crew are docked in the Imperial City's waterfront and an early Dark Brotherhood mission involves assassinating their captain. Surprisingly (for Bethesda, "The company with only six VA's") two of the nameless mook pirates have unique voices with the appropriate accent.
      • The Thieves Den plug-in lets you inherit your own pirate ship to use as the game's thief-oriented base. Unfortunately, the ship itself is trapped in a cove buried under a mountain (and what remains of the ship itself is definitely not seaworthy) so sailing isn't possible, but you can still hire your own pirate crew and send them to pillage for you.
  • In Chapter 4 of Eternal Sonata, the ship you're on is attacked by the pirate ship Dolce. You confront her captain (and namesake), later fight her again, and may fight her yet again before the game is over. Additionally, there are pirates in the Mysterious Unison.
  • Final Fantasy:
    • Final Fantasy had the very brief encounter with Bikke the pirate, who fixes the Broken Bridge of being stuck on the initial continent by awarding you a boat after his defeat. Ironically, enough, outside of the hat and the "Argh"-speak, he could easily just be a regular boat-owner.
    • Final Fantasy II has Leila, who talks like a pirate and steals the gang's gear, before Defeat Means Friendship happens.
    • Final Fantasy V on the other hand, has pirate captain Faris, a long lost sister of Princess Lenna, who was raised by pirates who found her, and disguised herself as a man. The Playstation version is known for giving her the stereotypical pirate accent. This is in fact made even better since the game's job system lets you make her a ninja, thus combining two of the most badass forces in the universe.
  • In the Fire Emblem series, Pirate is a very recurring character class debuting in the first game, and is thus far exclusively male. The pirate class wears traditional pirate garb: striped shirts, bandanas, eyepatches, but exclusively wield axes instead of a cutlass, possibly based on pirates historical use of boarding axes. In gameplay Pirate is a Glass Cannon with high HP, Strength, Speed, but low defense, and skill. They also possess the ability to Walk on Water giving them a terrain advantage. They advance to The Berserker class which keeps the terrain advantages, and usually the pirate thematics. Playable pirates are almost always the rogue kind, while enemy pirates are usually the brute kind. There may also be characters in the pirate profession but not in the pirate class. All Talk Like a Pirate.
    • Fire Emblem: Shadow Dragon & the Blade of Light: The very first boss in the series, Gazzak is a brutish Pirate. Darros, a pirate from the same organization, ends up joining the protagonists to start a new leaf. Additionally one of the playable characters, Barst turns to piracy in his ending.
    • In Fire Emblem Gaiden: most pirates are brutes in service of the pirate king Grieth who united all criminals in the continent. One Pirate of the Mercenary class, Saber, is hired by the protagonists to protect them. Humorously Saber(eventually), Grieth, and many of his mooks are Dread fighters, which is a Ninja based class.
    • Fire Emblem: Genealogy of the Holy War: Brigid, a playable character in the Sniper class led a group of Rogue Pirates before her crew mutinied. In the next game in the saga, Thracia 776, Lifis, a playable character in the thief class, is a Token Evil Teammate in the player's army.
    • Fire Emblem: The Blazing Blade: A prominent character is Fargus, the leader of a group of noble pirates that aids the protagonists. Dart, one of Fargus crew members joins the player's army. In the sequel, The Binding Blade, the playable Geese is an ex merchant who became a pirate that fights injustice inflicted on the lower classes.
    • Fire Emblem: The Sacred Stones: While there are no pirates in the story, the pirate class is an optional advanced class choice for Ross, an axe-using playable character.
    • Fire Emblem: Path of Radiance: No pirates are playable, but two show up as bosses. The first is Havetti, a goofy pirate extorting a harbor for food, and resources. The second is Nedata, a roguish pirate with a sense of honor who sings a song about the joy of being a pirate and serves as a optional miniboss.
    • Tearring Saga: In this Spiritual Successor, Holmes, one of the two main characters, is a privateer with his own crew. Garo is in the pirate class, and is a kind hearted bruiser with a Face of a Thug. A goofy Pirate boss also ends up doing a Heel–Face Turn, and joining the protagonists. Finally one of the Holmes missions has raiding ships, and opening all treasure chests as a victory condition, thus averting The Pirates Who Don't Do Anything. The game's sequel, Berwick Saga, has another pirate class character, this time looking very similar to Gazzak of the first game, trying to earn money for his blind daughter.
  • Both Foxy and Mangle from the Five Nights at Freddy's series, although they both reach Ninja Pirate Zombie Robot levels due to being Hostile Animatronics, Foxy of which being a Artificial Zombie.
  • The able men of Champa resort to piracy in Golden Sun when the beginning of the return of Alchemy to the world drives the fish from their waters. As a result, they're goodhearted Roguish pirates, and their leader Briggs even befriends the heroes of The Lost Age after they defeat him and send him to jail. His son grows up and joins the heroes in Dark Dawn to avenge Briggs's death by monsters the bad guys brought about.
  • The arcade/Dreamcast shooter Gunbird 2 has a Terrible Trio group of pirates, called the Queen Pirates, as the Big Bad Ensemble. Plus, they also have an army of Humongous Mecha.
  • Pirates are even their own minion tribe in Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft. They are often associated with weapon synergy effects and fit well in aggressive early-game decks that use weapons.
  • Kingdom of Loathing has The Obligatory Pirate's Cove on the Mysterious Island of Mystery, which is full of stereotypical pirates. They Talk Like a Pirate, engage in Insult Beer Pong, and drop bottles of rum. Though for some reason, they swear by Mike Nesmith's locker instead of Davy Jones.
  • League of Legends' Gangplank is a Brutish Pirate, a ruthless pirate whose life is more about plundering anything he could (and eating his orange while he's at it).
  • The Legend of Spyro: The Eternal Night: Skabb and his crew serve as the main villains for a story arch early in the game. Ironically, Skabb himself is too stupid to be captain so his two birds Scratch and Sniff are the real captains of the pirate fleet. Also ironic is Skabb ultimately meets his Disney Villain Death by Walk the Plank after Spyro badly hurts him.
  • The Legend of Zelda: The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker: Tetra, the game's incarnation of Zelda, is the leader of a pirate crew.
  • In Like a Dragon: Infinite Wealth, the chief villains of the Dondoko Island questline/minigame are the "Washbucklers", pirates who big corporations pay to offload their waste with no regards to where that waste ends up, and their favorite dumping ground just happens to be the titular island resort.
  • LittleBigPlanet has both a generic pirate costume, and Pirates of the Caribbean DLC.
  • Metal Slug 4 has stereotypical pirate mooks the players have to contend with in Mission 4, for some inexplicable reason.
  • Might and Magic (and Heroes of Might and Magic) had, in the games set on the world of Enroth, Regna, the self-proclaimed Empire of the Endless Ocean, a nation of pirates who were often mentioned but rarely seen (their main showing was in Might & Magic VIII, which even visited Regna proper). Being as it was a nation of pirates, the Regnans varied on the rogue-brute spectrum from individual to individual, but the brute side was favoured.
  • Might and Magic X has The Crag instead, a mainly Pirate town. However, they are closer to rogue type instead, and in the finale they help you mount an attack on Karthal overtaken by Marcus Wolf and his Black Guard and against Erebos himself, making them quite literally La Résistance.
  • Monkey Island, being a comedy series almost all the pirates are Roguish in personality. Even the supposedly evil pirates are too silly to be really threatening. Main character Guybrush Threepwood is barely a himself. The only real exception is Big Bad LeChuck who not just Brutish, but a nigh-unkillable, power-hungry zombie-demon pirate. Then in Tales of Monkey Island Guybrush's botched attempt to defeat LeChuck accidentally spreads a Pox that makes everyone Brutish for progressively longer periods of time.
  • "Cap'n" Ginny of MySims is obessed with pretending to be a pirate, and her best friend (boyfriend?) goes along with it. By MySims Kingdom, she's moved on to a new profession, but her old obsession is still referenced by Vic Vector when you give him a figurine of her.
  • Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door:
    • You take on the animated skull of the infamous pirate Cortez. He's simultaneously parts 1 and 2: during the battle he devours half the audience; afterwards, he joins you, and Mario doesn't even blink at the recent mass murder.
    • And earlier in the series, there was the shark pirates led by Jonathan Jones in Super Mario RPG: Legend of the Seven Stars. He seems to be Brutish at first, but after being defeated, he befriends Mario and company, freely giving them the star piece and then helping them to corner Yaridovich. There's also the occasional pirate enemies in other Mario games such as the Shy Guy Pirates in Yoshi's Story.
  • Pillars of Eternity II: Deadfire takes place in the Deadfire Archipelago, which is the Fantasy Counterpart Culture equivalent of the Caribbean and as such pirates can be found everywhere, with the game even starting off with your ship getting boarded. One of the major factions of the game is the Principi sen Patrena, a powerful pirate republic led by a former aristocrat of Old Vailia.
  • Countless characters in Pirate101, from the main protagonists to the gangs on Skull Island to the Frogfather's Syndicate in Jonah Town. The storyline of the game is based around pirates.
  • For some odd reason the MMORPG Pirates of the Burning Sea features them.
  • Pirate Hunter have you assuming the titular character and fighting hordes and hordes of pirates, including various Pirate Captains as bosses.
  • Naturally the focus of Pixel Piracy. Interestingly, they come in three varieties — the mostly allied crew of your ship, the neutral hirable ones in taverns, and the hostile ones encountered randomly on the sea.
  • Power Stone features pirate Captain Kraken as The Dragon to the game's Big Bad.
  • The Pirats in Raskulls.
  • Captain Chris Raven and his crew from Raven's Cry.
  • Reality-On-The-Norm has the recurring character Hooky McPegleg, who came to Reality-on-the-Norm in hopes of finding treasure and later became the town's postman—oh, I'm sorry: "Pirate Postman". There's also his archenemy No-Beard.
  • Risen features classical pirates. They are also the main theme of the sequel.
  • Chosokabe Motochika from Sengoku Basara is a self-styled pirate, though he seems to do it more for the adventure and his tendency to rob you blind varies between adaptations.
  • SaGa (RPG):
    • Romancing SaGa: Captain Hawke and his crew are bonafide pirates that hail from the Coral Sea. Surprisingly, he starts as a brutish type: his scenario begins with him raiding a ship and you are even given the choice to execute all the captured crew. After that, he settles for finding a way to settle the score with his rival, The Butcher.
    • Romancing SaGa 2: has the Armed Merchant class that are pirates in all but the name.
    • Romancing SaGa 3: Captain Black was a famous pirate that collected a huge amount of treasure, which he hid inside a series of caves in the peninsula near the resort of town of Great Arch. He went missing after that. Another famous pirate was Jackal who was renowned by his ruthlessness and cruelty. He too went missing some time prior to the events of the game.It's revealed that Herman, the salty sea dog in Great Arch, is Black. An encounter with Abyss Lord Forneus cursed him and turned him into an old geezer. Likewise, Maximus is revealed to be Jackal. He's using his position as a high ranked member of the Divine Church to collect the divine relics and use their powers to Take Over the World.
  • The Shantae series has its big bad, the sexy pirate captain Risky Boots. Series star Shantae also becomes one herself, at least for a little while, in the third entry.
  • Sid Meier's Pirates!, naturally. NPC pirates are mostly of the first type, but the Player Character can be either.
  • Skies of Arcadia, which has Air Pirates! Because The Sky Is an Ocean. There are actually two factions of Pirates in the game: Blue Rogues, which are Roguish and Just Like Robin Hood (the main characters are these) and the Black Pirates, which are Brutish. To be fair, while they call themselves air pirates, the title Blue Rogues doesn't actually imply that they do any piracey, while Black Pirates is Exactly What It Says on the Tin.
  • Soul Series: The undead pirate captain, Cervantes.
  • Show up repeatedly in the Suikoden series. A trio are recruitable in the first game, and befitting the nautical setting, a small pirate band are fan favorites in Suikoden IV and Suikoden Tactics.
  • A bonus character in the PS3 version of Tales of Vesperia will be a Loli-Pirate named Patty.
  • The League of Privateers from Thera: Legacy of the Great Torment are a loose alliance of brigands, thieves, cut-throats and outcasts all united under the banner of the legendary pirate lord William Greystoke and brought to the far-reaches of Mesocala for one purpose: to conquer, loot, pillage and get revenge on the Inquisition. League armies in the initial stages will effectively be whole armies of rag-tag pirates, though later as professional armies are fielded the League's forces adopt a more colonial/revolutionary America aesthetic but still keep some of their pirate influences.
  • Tropico 2: Pirate Cove shows that it takes a lot of work to be a successful pirate lord, far more than just sailing the high seas to find victims or Buried Treasure.
  • The titular island from Uncle Albert's Mysterious Island used to be invaded by pirates before Uncle Albert got stranded on it.
  • Wario Land:
  • In the Sega's iOS game War Pirates or Sen No Kaizoku, you are the captain of the noble Freedom Pirates and live in a world that wears it's One Piece influence on its sleeve. War Pirates has tons of characters including ninjas, samurais, robots, undead and animal people, with each given a fairly well-fleshed background reminiscent of Valkyria Chronicles
  • World of Warcraft is more than happy to use such an existing set of tropes/clichés.
  • Yohoho Puzzle Pirates is almost (but not quite) all Roguish. It's hard to be a mean, evil, unkempt scourge of the seas when you're a cartoon pirate in pretty outfit, with no nose.

    Visual Novels 

    Web Animation 
  • Russell from Happy Tree Friends looks and talks like one, though he doesn't really do any pirating (other than some digital piracy in Youtube Copyright School).

  • The Adventures of Dr. McNinja: The titular hero spends one of his first major story arcs battling pirates. The origin of the Pirates vs. Ninjas conflict is explored. Frozen shamrock shurikens are thrown. Like everything else in this comic, it has to be read to be believed.
  • Dimension 20 features Captain Bill Seacaster, who plays every Brutish Pirate stereotype straight... which makes him comically stand out in Elmville, which is mostly modern suburbia the game takes place in.
  • The Dreamland Chronicles: There's a whole crew ready to cause trouble, complete with airships and high-altitude battles.
  • Girl Genius has sky pirates (such as Bangladesh Dupree) and at least one crew of submarine pirates (in Sanaa's backstory): Moloch von Zinzer's time on a renegade 'walking gunship' might even qualify him as a Land Pirate. So far, no Subterranean Pirates or Space Pirates. But in this strip, it wouldn't be surprising.
  • Homestuck: Eridan Ampora and Vriska Serket roleplay as pirates in their FLARP sessions. Brutish all the way, the latter being more into the whole Pirate thing considering her love of loot, and the former in order to keep his friend's surrogate mother/eldritch abomination from letting out a world-ending scream. Later it's revealed that they're roleplaying as their ancestors, or at least the closest troll equivalent of, who were active and deadly sea brigands in their day.
  • The Order of the Stick: When Elan needs to reach Azure City, he meets a Sky Pirate and his ship. The whole party gets to ride on the same airship in later arc, at first graciously, but as the mission is stretching in length, the pirate crew remind them that time spent saving the world is less time spent looting, and the Order agree to pay them to make it worthwhile.
  • Sluggy Freelance: A major arc features "The Pirates of the Oceans Unmoving" — pirates in flying ships, sailing through cross-dimensional waters where time doesn't exist. It turns out that most (though not all) of the "pirates" are actually geeks who ended up "outside time" as a result of various technological mishaps, failed experiments, etcetera, found all these abandoned, flying ships, and decided to live out life-long dreams of adventures on the high (if unmoving) seas.
  • Whispers in the Wind is a webcomic of adventure and drama on the high seas, where a woman has to go to sea to get back her son who left town with pirates, unknowing the captain is his real father.

    Web Original 

    Western Animation 
  • Avatar: The Last Airbender had the kids run in to pirates in season one during which Katara "high-risk trades" a scroll that has waterbending moves on it from them. The pirates team up with Prince Zuko to capture the gang and when the pirates refuse to hand Aang over to him the resulting brawl allows the kids to escape. Later on in the season final the same pirates are hired by Admiral Zhao to kill Zuko. Also in season three when Sokka and Zuko search for Sokka's father in a Fire Nation prison. They don't find him at first but when they hear other guards talking that new prisoners are arriving and one of them is a pirate.
  • Featured in two episodes and two songs from Nick Jr.'s The Backyardigans.
  • Captain Pugwash. Pugwash himself is so soft that he barely qualifies even as a rogue. His archenemy, Cut-Throat Jake, is a brute, though a fairly mild one.
  • There be Roguish Pi-Rats in two episodes of Chip 'n Dale: Rescue Rangers.
  • On Codename: Kids Next Door, the KND sometimes had to deal with candy-stealing pirate and recurring foe Stickybeard.
  • Danny Phantom: Youngblood and his crew of dead pirates. Complete with Ghost Ship.
  • Darkwing Duck featured an Elseworld episode called "Darkwing Doubloon", where the Justice Ducks were Roguish pirates and the Fearsome Five were Brutish pirates.
  • Kim Possible is on a field trip to a Colonial Williamsburg-type historical reenactment town, when Dr. Drakken gets possessed by a pirate ghost and comes gunning for the town in the episode "Captain Drakken". The heroes, complete with Wade who arrives on a white charger, fight him off the old fashioned way, to save their grades.
  • ‘’Mad Jack the Pirate’’ is a 13 episode series which basically asks “What if Blackadder was a pirate?
  • Mr. Benn: In "Pirate", Mr. Benn dons a a pirate costume and helps the crew of a pirate ship, who are determined not to be pirates, turn their Captain into an honest man, and see that he gets a very different sort of treasure for his island: trees from a crew of gardeners whose ship the pirates pretend to capture, but actually rescue, during a storm.
  • Fox's Peter Pan & the Pirates as the name implies, it focus on the Pirates themselves almost as much as in Peter Pan and the Lost Boys.
  • Pirate Express stars a gang of incompetent pirates who were magically imprisoned alongside their ship as a ship in a bottle by Poseidon for trying to steal from him, only to be freed in the present by Poseidon's 12-year-old son Newt, who makes himself their leader.
  • Pirates: Adventures in Art stars a gang of heroic pirates who search for art rather than treasure in order to restore the creative arts after it has been banned by the evil, art-hating Queen Conformia.
  • Pirates of Dark Water offers a fantasy take, complete with fantasy swearing.
  • Pirate's Passage naturally features pirates of various kinds including the most horrible of all: capitalists, profiteers and the like.
  • The Crimson Binome and the crew of the Saucy Mare are pirate binomes from ReBoot. In their first appearance they rob Mainframe blind by taking everything that isn't nailed down, with plans to sell it. They are later convinced that honest trade between systems would be more profitable, so they become legitimate businessmen. Later in Season 3 they return to help the protagonists on a dangerous journey into the Web.
  • She-Ra: Princess of Power features the Sea Hawk, who starts out as an Anti-Villain and then makes the turn to true hero by joining the fight against the Horde.
  • La Résistance in Skyland are proud to call themselves pirates.
  • Parodied in the South Park episode "Farbeard", where Cartman and his assembled gang meet the Somalian pirates (see the real life section below) and turned them away from modern piracy and fashioned them into pirates as seen in popular culture.
  • The VeggieTales videos once had a Silly Song with Larry titled The Pirates Who Don't Do Anything. Originally it was just, well, a silly song where Larry and some of the other cast dressed up as pirates and sang about how they just sat around and looked cool all day, but the popularity of the characters and song meant that eventually they became (sort of) real pirates for the two feature films.
  • Work It Out Wombats!: In "Special Delivery," Zadie and Zeke are playing pirates. They get mad when Malik 'steals' their 'treasure' (the ice cream) and try to throw a pool noodle at him, to no avail.

    Real Life 
  • Talk Like A Pirate Day
    • Everythings Better With Pirates: In 2008, the University of York (York University is in Canada) in England held an election for student president. There were two sensible candidates and Mad Cap'n Tom, who carried a duck named Brian on his shoulder, said 'Aharrr' a lot and promised cutlass training for all student officers. Guess who won. Cap'n Tom has legitimate pirate credentials: he runs the UK branch of Talk Like A Pirate Day.
    • On "Talk Like A Pirate Day 2008", Facebook created an option to display everything in Pirate Speak. And unlike Google, they actually put some effort into it. You can set Facebook to be in Pirate all the time if you want.
  • Henry Morgan, later governor of Jamacia. Since he fought only the Spanish and while they were at war with the English (at least to the best of his knowledge) a border-line case. Many fictional pirates (Roguish) have drawn on his history, which explains why so many became colonial governers.
  • Likewise Henry Every — the most badass pirate you've never heard of. Nicknamed the King of Pirates, he was one of the few Great Captains to successfully retire with all of his loot and suffer almost no repercussions for his crimes. Made a spectacular fool out of the East-India trading company through out his entire career and was more or less the impetus for the creation of hired Pirate Hunters like Captain Kidd.
  • Samuel "Black Sam" Bellamy had the potential to outdo Every. Bellamy took 50 ships in less than a year, and is estimated to have taken more plunder than captains operating for years. Bellamy was the very model of a Rogue, often leaving captain and crew alone after his raids. His own career was tragically cut short when his flagship, the Whydah, sank in a Nor'easter off Cape Cod.
    • "I am a free prince, and I have as much authority to make war on the whole world as he who has a hundred sail of ships at sea and an army of 100,000 men in the field; and this MY conscience tells me!"
  • Edward Teach, more commonly known as Blackbeard, is the dark genesis for a lot of the Brutish fictional pirates. The man had serious issues. He habitually went into battle with lit cannon fuses in his beard (putting himself at serious risk of having his head catch fire). He once proposed that he and his crew 'test themselves' against their 'future destination' and swamped the below-decks area with sulphur fumes, refusing to emerge until his entire crew had fled. Another time, while peacefully playing cards with three of his crew belowdecks, he blew out the candle and started shooting at random. He once held the entire port of Charleston for ransom and dared the British crown to do anything about it. He was eventually cornered and brought down — see his entry in Rasputinian Death — and his head left dangling for public display so that the people would know the monster was finally dead.
    • It should be noted, however, that except for his final battle, there is little or no hard evidence that Blackbeard actually killed anybody. Many of the stories about him were likely spread by him, since the more fearsome his reputation, the less likely his victims would be to fight back.
  • Stede Bonnet was a young aristocrat from Barbados who got so caught up in the romantic notions of piracy that he decided to abandon his wealth and family to pursue a life as a pirate... despite having no maritime experience whatsoever. Some records say that he was mentally unstable, some say he was handling the death of his son very poorly, some say he was just trying to escape from a nagging wife. Regardless of the reason, and regardless of how little of a threat he ever really posed, it did not end very well for him.
  • Captain Kidd was executed as a pirate, though some modern historians believe he was framed.
  • Bartholomew Roberts, one of the more successful Caribbean pirates (a 30-month career and over 200 captures), is probably the closest pirates ever got to Rogue in reality. He did kill a bunch of people, but often treated captives with compassion (unless his crew really wanted to hurt them).
    • It was actually pretty common for pirates to treat their prisoners reasonably well. They mainly replenished their ranks from among them after all, as they all tended to be former sailors from navy or commercial vessels fed up with lousy pay and tyrannical captains. The officers tended to be free game, however.
      • And if you treat your captives reasonably well and allow them to leave alive, then the crew of any future ship captured is less likely to fight and be more compliant. This, in turn, heightens the success rate of future endeavors, so it's in your best interest as a pirate to take prisoners and treat them well.
    • He himself was originally a prisoner of the pirate crew, they took him because he was a good navigator, in a time when your average person couldn't read or do advanced math this was a very important job.
  • The Barbary Pirates started as vassals of the Turkish sultan and raided Christian lands and ships, taking slaves and plunder. (See, for example, Robinson Crusoe and Rafael Sabatini's The Sea Hawk.) Eventually they realized they could become The Pirates Who Don't Do Anything by converting their business into a protection racket. They still raided territories that didn't pay up, but mostly sat back and let the money roll in. Until an upstart young country called the United States of America decided it had no truck with this (or really not enough money to pay up) and thus had the then small and brand spanking new US Navy fight the two small Barbary Wars.
    • An incident in the first war where William Eaton and Presley Neville O’Bannon led 8 Marines and 500 Mercenaries is the reason behind that line in the anthem, and the Marine's use of the Mameluke Sword.
  • The US Coast Guard likes to think of themselves as all... piratey. It has to do with the whole "Arr, mateys, lets seize us some ships" deal. The Revenue Cutter Service, which was the original service, included hunting pirates among its duties. So does the modern one.
  • Julius Caesar was once captured by Mediterranean pirates. He managed to charm them into treating him well, and was ransomed back to Rome. He'd often got on quite well with some of them, and would often say "I'll have you all killed once I've returned," with a bit of laughter all around. Once he was returned he made a special point of raising a personal naval force, confiscating his captors' treasures (including his own ransom), and having them all crucified. So, uh, it's not clear here whether what we're looking at here are Roguish pirates or a Brutish Caesar.
  • Stepan Razin was the Russian contemporary to Blackbeard and Morgan. Russia of this era was landlocked, but it didn't stop Razin: he looked for his prey on the rivers and on the inland Caspian sea. The pinnacle of Stepan Razin's career was a rebellion to overthrow the Tsar. He failed and was executed.
    • Later remembered as the Russian Robin Hood, especially during the Soviet era.
  • Benjamin Hornigold was one of the few real-life Roguish pirates, and later became a pirate hunter for the British crown. On one occasion, his vessel attacked a merchant ship, which promptly struck its colours. Upon boarding the ship, the terrified sailors were relieved of their hats — Hornigold explained that he and his men had got drunk the night before, and thrown theirs overboard. Having got the hats, they left the merchantman in peace.
  • Very much on the Brute side of things, Boysie Singh was a gangster in Trinidad who made good money promising to transport people discretely over to Venezuela in the early 1900s. He would then steal their valuables, kill them, and dump the bodies overboard.
  • Though almost all pirates were Class 1, the simple truth is that most pirates ended up with things like sailcloth, flour, rum, and other low-value staples as "plunder" from most of their raids. Treasure ships or vessels with wealthy passengers usually had escorts, guards on board, or both. Contrary to media depictions, pirates didn't earn much of a living.
  • In many times and places periods everyone at sea was a potential pirate because hard as it was to enforce law on land it was even harder at sea and few rulers bothered-many were even sponsors of piracy themselves (a custom which evolved into the more formalized privateering). A lot was a matter of degree; some ships were Intrepid Merchant ships that happened to go raiding when chance arose and others were raiders that also happened to buy and sell, all across the spectrum.
  • Royal Navy submarine crews love to act as pirates: at the start of World War I the First Sea Lords (their commander in chief) compared submarine crews to pirates, and a submarine crew decided to reply by hoisting the Jolly Roger after sinking a German ship. Since then, British submarines are entitled to fly the Jolly Roger upon returning from a successful patrol, often adding symbols to show what their patrol involved, like ship silhouettes to show enemy ships sunk, missiles to show attacking enemy bases with cruise missiles, and (on one occasion) a can opener, after a submarine almost sank a thin-skinned Italian destroyer by getting rammed.
  • Although not really pirates, the US Navy squadron VF-84/VFA-103 fly the Jolly Roger in all its glory on the tail of their aircraft. In the last few decades, even the cartoons representing the aircraft have gotten in on the act as "Tom the Cat" and "Rhino" both dawned pirate gear for their patches. This squadron also served as inspiration for "Skull Squadron" of Macross fame.
  • Frigatebirds are seabirds that regularly supplement their diet via kleptoparasitiam, harassing smaller seabirds into dropping the fish they've caught so the frigates can steal their fishy booty. This piratical behavior earned them their name, as "frigates" are a type of sailing ship which was historically favored by Dutch privateers.
  • All these buccaneers aren't fit to swab Ching Shih's deck; she led the famous Red Flag Fleet with at least 20,000 men in 18th-19th century China. She took down the state's fleet and managed to force the Qing Imperial government to pardon her and let her and her pirates keep the loot at the same time. Only the intervention of European gunboats sunk her ambition. She had to surrender to the Portuguese gunships, allowed a token number of her pirates to be punished, and most of them walked off with their wealth. She died in bed a fabulously wealthy salt mine and casino tycoon at the age of 69.

Alternative Title(s): Pirates, Instant Plunder Just Add Pirates


Captured by Pirates

Betty Boop, Bimbo and Koko the Clown are captured by pirates.

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