Update v1.3 for Port Royale 4 has been released! | Kalypso Media Blog

20. November 2020

Update v1.3 for Port Royale 4 has been released!

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Hello everybody!  

Update 1.3 for Port Royale 4 is now available on Steam, with the console versions soon to follow. With this update, players can now declare independence from their starting nation and gain full control over their diplomatic relations. To shake things up and bring a fresh breeze to the Caribbean economy, there is also now the option to enable events we call ‘Economic Shocks’ during Free Game mode.  

As a result of your feedback, we have removed the fame penalty for not supplying your town with enough commodities and replaced this with a bonus system. 

We have also improved the naval battles and the city management based on your feedback and added the often-requested male Merchant and Pirate as playable characters.  

Update 1.3 contains a ton of improvements and fixes – a detailed list of which can be found below.  

We would like to thank you for your support and valuable feedback. We are looking forward to hearing what you think about the changes and new features. 

Your Port Royale 4 team  

Important note: 
We recommend continuing to play old savegames on the “legacy branch” with version 1.2.1, loading earlier savegames in version 1.3 might cause incompatibilities. 

Guide on how to access the ‘legacy branch’:
-Launch the Steam Client
-Open your Steam Library and right-click on Port Royale 4
-Select ‘Properties’ and click on the ‘Betas’ tab
-Click on the drop-down list and select ‘legacy
-Press ‘Close’
-Wait until all necessary files have been downloaded and start the game 

P.S.: Just before release our team has found a graphical error that in some cases leads to ship flags being displayed plain grey when starting a new game. As we did not want to keep you waiting longer for the new features we have promised, we decided to launch the update. The team is already working on a solution for this behaviour and we will fix this as soon as possible.

Major Improvements

1) Declaration of independence 

  • The player now has the ability the declare independence from their parent nation if they have unlocked all concessions and own 10 military convoys. The option to declare independence can be found in the concessions screen. 
  • Upon declaring independence, all player-governed towns will join the new player nation, which will adopt the player’s flag and can be given a custom name. At this point, the player will be at war with their former parent nation and in a neutral relationship with other nations. 
  • As an independent nation, the player has full control over diplomacy with other nations and will not require letters of marque anymore. The player’s nation will also send automated treasure fleets to Europe to exchange colonial goods for fame.

2) Economic shocks 

  • We have introduced a new option called ‘economic shocks’ to Free Game mode. This feature can be toggled in the game settings prior to starting a Free Game. 
  • Economic shocks are meant to shake things up and disturb the balance of the economic simulation for a while, bringing some winds of change to the Caribbean. 
  • 6 types of economic shock can appear randomly in-game once the player’s company has accrued 1,000,000 gold. 
  • Shocks can have varied effects, such as decreasing the production of certain goods due to a plague of locusts or increasing the prices of other goods due to a newly introduced ‘church tax’ in specific regions.  
  • For this reason, the game world has been divided into 8 geographical regions in which economic shocks can come into effect. A shock can hit one or multiple regions, or even a specific nation.

3) Improvements to naval battles 

  • Boarding difficulty
    • We have changed the damage done by canister shots from absolute to relative so to decrease the effectiveness of boarding. 
  • Prize money
    • We have added a prize money mechanic for vessels that are captured but not absorbed into a player’s convoy following a battle. The player will now receive money as compensation for these boarded vessels instead of them being sunk. 
  • Special terrain tiles in naval battles
    • We have added the following special terrain tiles to battles: 
      • Sandbars or whirlpools that impair movement 
      • Cliffs that block the respective tile  
      • Carpets of algae that damage vessels when passing over the tile
    • Turn indicators for vessels
      • There is now an indicator for which vessels will take their turn next in battle. 
    • Displaying earned captain’s experience
      • The earned experience for your captain following a battle is now displayed 
    • Disabling tactics when vessels are sunk
      • When all vessels of a specific type have been sunk, the player will lose the tactic associated with these vessels and this tactic will not be available for the remainder of the battle.

4) Town management improvements

  • Drag & drop mechanic to rearrange buildings
    • We have added a drag & drop mechanic for buildings to the Building menu. This way, players can easily rearrange buildings within their settlements. However, this comes at a cost and there is a fee for each time buildings are rearranged depending on the economic difficulty selected by the player.  
  • Town titles
    • We have added town titles to the game. Every town will now have an atmospheric title at the start of the game (this can be found in the town overview). There are 7 dynamic town titles with affiliated bonuses that a town can both earn and lose throughout a game.
    • One example of a dynamic title is “Metropolis of the Caribbean”, which will be granted to the first town in the game to reach 6,000 inhabitants. If the player is the administrator of the town with this title, they will earn 0.1 fame per town as long as the town continues to hold this title. 
  • Removed fame penalty and added bonus for satisfied towns
    • We removed the fame penalty for a player supplying insufficient commodities to a town and replaced it with a bonus that will apply if a town reaches a general satisfaction level of at least 90%. This bonus consists of new workers constantly spawning in the town and the shipyard working 25% more efficiently. 
  • Display multiple town status effects
    • We added the option to display multiple town status effects in the town overview. 
  • The tavern is back!
    • We added a new screen to the ‘Guesthouse’ building that can be found close to the harbor of those larger towns. It contains the classic dice-roll minigame as well as some cutthroats / scallywags / rogues, who might occasionally offer you some shady deals. 
  • Speech bubbles for citizens
    • We added situational speech bubbles to town citizens that will express their well-being and thoughts on how their town is doing. This will appear when the player hovers over each citizen’s hex field.

5) Male Pirate and Merchant

  • We have added male versions of the Merchant and the Pirate. 
    Note: female versions of the Adventurer and the Buccaneer will follow in a later update. 

More improvements 

  • We have adjusted the late-game scaling for the cost of trade licenses and building licenses as well as the fame requirements for a new fame point. In general, all of these are now capped at specific values depending on the economic difficulty settings. This is to prevent an unrealistic cost explosion once the player has created a flourishing trade empire. Letters of marque are now capped in a way that there should be no letters of marque that cost millions of gold (there was a bug at some point that allowed this). 
  • We have added 2 additional player flags for each playable nation (8 in total). 
  • The player’s reputation with each nation will now display if you hover over a nation while in the viceroy’s ‘nations’ screen. 
  • We have added an extra option to the starting settings from which the player can adjust the frequency of wars. For instance, players can now choose to wage frequent but short wars or opt for those rarer and longer. 
  • Added a new notification from the viceroy informing the player if an enemy nation is expecting reinforcements from Europe, as well as the expected arrival date of these war convoys. 
  • Adjusted the frequency of Advisor hints when potential problems occur. This notification now triggers 3 times for each unique problem to prevent The Advisor from annoying the player if a specific, potential semi-efficient situation has been purposefully set up. 
  • Added additional info buttons to the Shipyard, linking to an improved info text which explains a ship’s individual statistic in detail. 
  • Pirates can now build pirate barques in the shipyard. 
  • Added damage models for ships. 
  • Added a one-time-per-town fame reward for constructing a Cathedral. 
  • Added the option to centre the selected convoy if an empty part of the convoy window is clicked on. 
  • Increased the maximum possible towns in a trade route from 20 to 30. 
  • Added a “do not remind me again” option for the hint “recommended to play the tutorial first” when starting another game mode without having yet finished the tutorial.

Bug fixes and optimizations 


  • Fixed a rare crash occurring when editing big trade routes. 
  • Fixed a rare crash occurring when an armed merchant was selling additional trading vessels.

General bugs 

  • Fixed the message that a pirate is getting stronger to display as a negative notification in the viceroy tab. 
  • Fixed some nation-specific concession graphics overlap. 
  • Fixed multiple graphical issues with the water that could occur when following a convoy using ‘t’. 
  • Fixed an exploit that would make an enemy military convoy no longer attack the player. 
  • Fixed an overlapping town siege icon. 
  • Fixed the copy trade route settings mechanic so that it now updates immediately. 
  • Fixed an inconsistency with the displayed vessel speed between the tooltip and the value shown in the convoy window. 
  • Fixed hotkey trading so that the new value of the filling level indicator shows when the player is selling. 
  • Fixed the notification for a successful town siege being displayed too early. 
  • Fixed an overlapping text for the Pirate character in French. 
  • Fixed mini map not refreshing after buying a trading license. 
  • Fixed an incorrect calculation of the average price of luxury goods that would occur if the player’s storage is close to full. 
  • Updated the viceroy button to blink when the player receives a fame point. 
  • Fixed the info of a trading convoy without a trade route assigned getting displayed after it got a trade route assigned already. 
  • Adjusted mini map colours for better readability. 
  • Matched mini map colours in-game with those shown on the map that displays when player is choosing their hometown at the start of Free Game mode. 
  • Fixed thousands of jobseekers already generated at the start of Free Game mode. 
  • Fixed wind and current speeds to display alongside the cruise speed even if this modifier is set at 0%. 
  • Fixed cruise speed modifiers that would not continuously update. 
  • Fixed company balance sheet that would incorrectly display ship loot. 
  • Fixed an error that allowed players to organize feasts in the Churches of other nations. 
  • Fixed an inconsistency in the text displayed about missionaries between Chapels, Churches and Cathedrals. 
  • Fixed the ship watermark not displaying in the trade route convoy window unless a route had been assigned then reassigned. 
  • Fixed issues when loading a saved game during a naval combat. 


  • Fixed an inconsistency in the tutorial telling the player that they can still explore while showing the only option to be exiting the tutorial. 
  • Fixed a rare error in Tutorial Chapter 6 that prevented users from continuing.  
  • Fixed an off-centre arrow in Tutorial chapter 4. 


  • Adjusted the text of the French campaign to be centred like the rest of information text for the campaigns. 
  • Fixed a historical fact displaying before the cinematic during the French campaign. 
  • Fixed an error preventing players from continuing that would occur if the hideout of Walter Raleigh was destroyed before the task was mentioned or assigned in the English campaign. 

Naval battles 

  • Fixed blurry ships during naval battles. 
  • Fixed some inaccuracies in battle forecasts. 
  • Fixed the occasional missing sound effect in battles. 
  • Fixed the chance of boarding to not display correctly if the chance was too low. 
  • Fixed time not pausing on all screens following a naval battle. 
  • Added an additional hint to naval battles when a ship is low on sailors. 
  • Fixed a rare issue where some fields could not be accessed by ships in naval battles. 
  • Fixed an incorrect loading screen when entering or leaving a naval battle. 
  • Fixed incorrect text from displaying during post-battle dialog. 
  • Fixed an issue where during their turn, the player was not able to freely choose between those ships they had available. 
  • Fixed an issue where player ships were not able to attack enemies on adjacent fields. 
  • Fixed the tactic inferno lasting the incorrect amount of time.