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Assassin Creed IV Black Flag Hints and Tips to become a great pirate
They're 5 resources; wood, metal, cloth, rum and sugar. The wood is primarily used to upgrade boat part like the ship's ram or wheel. The metals can increase the amount of canons you can have on the Jackdaw and upgrade the canons firepower. The cloth is more for appearance upgrades like the boat's sheet. The rum and sugar aren't used for upgrades, they are only saleable but they are a great way to make money.
Discovering the West Indies
From the moment you acquire the Jackdaw, the West Indies becomes your playground. To rule the seas, you'll need to upgrade the jackdaw. To do so, you will need money and resources. To get those you'll need to find crates on the sea and plunder warehouses and boats. The crate are randomly spawned but are only few resources, don't count on it to make a fortune. The warehouses are a good way to make some resources. And finally, plundering boat, it's a fast and good way to get resources, incapacitate the enemy boat then board it or destroy it for a part of the resources. After you have gathered enough wood, metal and cloth, it is time to upgrade the jackdaw. To know how to efficiently upgrade your ship, see the section below. Now that your boat is upgraded, the naval missions that have good rewards are going to be easier and you can go fight against bigger ship to get more resources and money. Having a powerful ship will help you in multiple story missions. And with the money you have gained, you can buy a better set of swords and pistols. I explain Edward's equipment in the section below.
Different ways of gathering resources
First, the crates,
They are spread everywhere around the West Indies, most of the ones you'll find will be floating around but some are on beaches or in caves. Crates contain about 1 to 10 resources, and upgrades are around 500 more or less so you won't make a ton of resources from these boxes but can be helpful sometime when you are only a few woods away from your upgrade.
Then, The warehouses,
They are a good way to get resources for beginners because you don't need to use your boat. When you are on the island, you will need to find the key holder. You can find him by using the eagle vision. Make sure you don't attract too much attention or else he will hide. Use the hiding spots and sabotage the alarm bells. After you found him, kill him or pickpocket him for the key. Then you just need to reach the warehouse and that's it! You've plundered a warehouse and have acquired resources. The only down part about warehouses is that they aren't going to be full when you come back tomorrow, they only respawn after a while.
The best way to get resources is by plundering boats.
First, find a boat that you are going to be easily able to defeat him like a schooner or a brig, gunboat aren’t worth the time because the only have barrels. Try to find a lonely ship so that you won't find the 3 other boats around your target. After you found your boat, start the battle! Try not to end up on his sides because he will be shooting all his cannons on you, so try to bring your left or right side on the front or the back of his boat so that together you make a T shape, then aim and shoot! After shooting a boat, you will make holes in his walls and it's the time to use the swivels. Just press the swivel button and they will do a ton of damage to your enemy. After you have incapacitated the ship, you have two options: Board the ship or destroy the ship. Boarding the ship will give you all the boat's resources. Destroying the ship will only give the half of the boat's resources but it's quicker than boarding the ship.
Boarding a ship
Upgrading the Jackdaw
There are many different things to upgrade on the Edward's ship.
To make it stronger,
Everything depends on your type of battle, if you stay far from the battle, buy a mortar and upgrade it; it’s strong ranged cannon that are really useful when your broadsides are reloading. You like to charge the enemy? Buy a ram and upgrade the ship's hull so you won't lose health by impact. If you are mixed, buy a good set of broadside cannons, buy a mortar and a ram but you don't absolutely need to tune it up. But every kind of players needs a strong hull to protect the jackdaw from those cannonballs.
Tips as an assassin
Even if the type of sword have different stats if you do counters and they are well timed you won't need to buy the best sword to be the best. But for the pistols, it's the opposite, sometimes you are having a kill streak and then the pistol needs two bullets to kill the guy that sucks. So try to buy a good set of pistol but for the swords go for the ones you want.
The different darts can be really useful, for examples, when you are doing an assassination mission, and you want to stay out of combat use the berserk dart on the target and he will start hitting his friend and they will kill him without having you to do anything.
Try to conquer the naval forts earlier because they are like viewpoints because when you unlock it, it unfits the map around the forts territory.
If you are a good assassin and you don't want to lose any crew mate during a boarding, after you've incapacitated the ship, stay out of the boarding zone, release the wheel and jump in the water and swim to the enemy boat, kill the entire enemy crew, destroy the ship's flag by going under the flag and press the ''grab'' button, and destroy the ship's powder reserve. When it is done, go back to your ship and grab the wheel. Now, go to the boarding zone and press the board button when the boarding starts, it will instantly end and you will have boarded an enemy ship without losing any crew member.
When you encounter bandits in caves where you dove and you don't have any equipment. Try to fang a rifle and loot every bandit you kill, and then you'll have enough bullet to fight all of them without trouble.
If you are a stealthy assassin go ahead and be sneaky but if you aren't that great hiding in bushes and hay bales, just fight because a big part of the game doesn't need a stealthy gameplay.
Study the combat techniques that the legendary ships have before fighting them because they are really hard to beat.
Upgrading Edward's island will grant you many advantages like free courtesans and free crew members.
The trick is give you for Kenway’s Fleet is when the Jackdaw is well upgraded, go fight Man o' War's and send them to the fleet because they are really good and all the mission have a 100% completion percentage with a Man o' War. Sell all the other ship you have and replace them. They are devastating for Naval Battles. So fill your fleet with these monsters and let them do the money. And if you are away from your console, you can download the companion app for your tablet so that you will be able to control your fleet from the tablet.
Here is the link for Assassin Creed IV Black Flag Companion App: