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Tosls version of Tzz's Puzzle Guide: Version 2.0/3.0 Reply to this Post
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Tosls version of Tzz's Puzzle Guide: Version 2.0/3.0


in a word document, click here: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1dMirxMTapZWYtz4CX6OZmHot5q8728Cn/view?usp=sharing

This is a guide modeled/stolen heavily after/from Tzz's Puzzle Guide: Version 2.0: http://forums.puzzlepirates.com/community/mvnforum/viewthread?thread=200914

This is a guide for puzzling only. For other info, check out tzzs guide! The idea is to break each puzzle down to the skills required to play them, with a few tips and tricks. For people who asked me. I'm not the best at the puzzles by any means, this is just a guide for people to become?. better.
A compilation of a few discord messages and tips I?ve recommended for others. Ill attach more videos as we go along.

Thanks for Geo for allowing me to use his stream contents to derive tips from. If people ask questions on this thread, if something is misunderstood, I?ll try to attach examples of geo being a badass.

How puzzles Work: three kinds of ways to play any given puzzle

Puzzle competitions:
Competitions reflect the ability to place super high on any given puzzle. EVEN/ESPECIALLY inconsistently.
Every Duty report your score gets sent into the competition. If it is higher than a previous score, it replaces it, if its lower it just gets ignored (in a single category). These are scored by your highest single league point. In multi-puzzle competitions the overall is scored by the sum of your highest one duty report for each puzzle. For crafting puzzles this simply means one very high scoring session will win. For duty puzzles, each duty report is the average of your sparkly over the entire report. Your sparkly level is created by a moving average of your last 3 minutes of puzzling. Each league is about a min, so this means it usually takes about 4-5 minutes of continuous flawless puzzling to win a competition for duty puzzles (as best inc ofc).

each puzzle has its own way of puzzling, with the idea of getting one good segment as supposed to having a balanced puzzling experience. For competitions, I see 3 categories.
A. the move games ???? the 3 min laze technique.
- some games work with the following fashion: ?stalling lowers score, and with every move the score goes slightly less?.
For those puzzles, if you laze for 3 mins after building a combo, trigger it after 3 mins and all of the negative score for the moves used to build the combo won?t go into the score, leading to a top DR.
B. the speed games ???? just get lucky.
Any game where the goal is to play it as fast as possible there isn?t much difference to play in or out of a competition. Just play fast.
C. the luck games ???? take all of the right risks.
Once you capped your skill level, if the competition takes a while you can go hyper aggressive and take an enormous amount of risks. Once a few risks pay off, that game will be the game that gives you the edge over the other players.

Stats reflect the average segment/session.
Your Stat/rank is the average score of your last 100 or so puzzles. So, If you disconnect or have one really bad session, it takes a long time (100 sessions or so) to fix the average. If you are a high ultimate, then one DC or so may only bring down to a lower one.

Also, remember that for duty puzzles a session is whenever you do an 'action': (leave a puzzle, reach an important LP, enter or exit an IO/flotilla) ; not every duty report. Usually it is very short sessions, like hopping on station 30-60 seconds before port, that hurts your rank most, as you start on booched. A similar concept can be made with hyper-ranking. The idea is to start a session while on inc. The easiest way to improve your rank is to not TH/accept challenges over breaks, and not engage ships at League points when pillaging. The other general rule, is if you're doing good, take a break (TH or something maybe) then start up again before a DR. If you're doing bad, keep on station till it gets better, to make the session longer.
For working on the stats on any given puzzle, you must know what, and if there are tactics that can be used.

Puzzle goals:

each puzzle has a specific goal in-game. Crafting is to get expert every time. Pirate puzzles is to get inc. parlor is to win. Et cetera.

Duty Puzzles


Bilging is a game of calculations. Good Bilging is all about slow careful planning. Speed is barely a factor as long as you make at least one move every 8-10 seconds or so. If you wait that long, you will face a penalty. In addition, the penalty for making a move functions like dividing your score by a small number. The more you wait, the more it will hurt. Make those combos fast!
(Jice has proven this; kudos to him. He should write one of these)
The goal is to make Vegas and Sea Donkeys. It is important to note, the only way to move pieces is two adjacent ones in the same row. So, a good bilger splits their work into 3 steps:
3x3. Making a row of 3 of one color, 3 of the other. The way to do this is search the board for a row that is 2 off, for example: 3x1. (so 3 of one color, one of the other. Or 2x2(two of two colors). Turning it into a 3x3 is super intuitive.
Sea donkey. Getting the pieces in the area to turn the 3x3 into a combo for the ages.
Buffing the sea donkey. On occasions, as listed in the tables below, it is worth taking a 3x3x3x3 and turning it into a 3x3x5x5. But only in a certain # of moves. Use the numbers above to make some sense of when its worth wasting moves, and when it isn?t worth it. Calculate it!
Mistakes are costly. Waste a good amount of time. Because you are allowed to play slowly, there is absolutely no reason to speed things up. Take your time!
In general, looking for clears is the way to go before making a move. Clearing the wrong pieces will hurt the combos you are building. If you find that you aren't looking ahead, you are bilging wrong.
In addition, accidentally clearing 3 in the same row after a vertical clear is super common and at the same time the most dangerous, as it ruins the entire setup.
the idea: clear the main 5 browns in the center to turn the center 1x3 row into a 3x2. Will this tactic work? No, the blues will also clear. After they do, will it ruin the 3x1 row? What can you do to make sure it works? Work out your own tactics to avoid mistakes.
There is a tactic for this, before a vertical clear, check if by the clear on all levels of the clear there are 2 pieces of the same kind by where the pieces drop. If there are, check that there isn?t any pieces in the way.

Here's table of how many clicks each combo should take. This is the worst-case scenario. Don?t make mistakes!

Jice is hard at work. :D

so, how do I play the different formats?

for competitions, prepare a combo (aka 2-3 vegas/SDs), idle for 3min, and clear it on the following LP.

for stats, IO hyper-ranking. Get inc, dismiss. After that, get 2-3 sea donkeys then dismiss. Don?t make mistakes!

For getting inc on pillages, play well without mistakes. Work on getting sea donkeys as efficiently as possible, and you will get there.


rigging is the game of using special effects well. Rigging gives the player 3 main kinds of special pieces: tar, gaff, and splice. A good rigger can use all of the bonus pieces to a maximum effect.
In general, I like to focus my gameplay getting tars. So, we will focus on strategies with and without the tar piece.

For the first few boards, just find what color there is the most of, and clear 95% or more of it. Repeat this for whichever color there is the most of on the board.

Once you can get gaffs, you can start going for those to increase the size of your clears. The simplest way to make a ring of 6 pieces with one in the middle. Mauritius explains loops nicely, and it?s a guide worth watching.


if you have the tar, you can start working on board control. Tars will come next. Control your clears, clear tars in a little number of moves.



Token Rigging

Aside from having lucky clears: either freebee 1 move tokens, or a token after a clear, token rigging is similar to token bilging. The main difference is whenever possible make 2 large consecutive clears to get you multiple types of tokens. Besides that, booch your score to get tokens, and alternate large clears to keep your score high. In addition, save flower tokens for speed.

Also worth to note, rigging like Mauritius as listed above is quite useful. Loops, and specifically gaffs, lead naturally toward token rigging.
Here's a video of some decent token rigging. Its probably tzzs least favorite station to make tokens on, so he's a bit out of practice.

Token Rigging Video

for competitions, prepare a double loop, idle for 3min, and clear it on the following LP.
Rigging Competition loop
for stats, IO hyper-ranking. Get inc, dismiss. After that, get through a board until the combo doesn?t lead to more combos or the board clears star-wise.
For getting inc on pillages, play well without mistakes. Find the easiest bonuses to get and excel+ will happen. Inc isn?t easy but have faith.

for competitions, one big combo does the trick. For #1, the board ideally has the following requirements that naturally lead to combos.
6 platforms are a MUST. Platforms score better, the more the merrier.
An empty column on an edge. The idea is to use it for clears.
for stats, IO hyper-ranking. Get inc, dismiss. After that, do 1 board and dismiss. Don't do mistakes!
For getting inc on pillages, play well without mistakes. Manage when to build and when not to build. Speed is also a factor here.
Also note, that it seems that with every move added the score is also divided. Combo efficiently!
I?m not writing more, as there are better guides and videos than me. These are just a few factoids.

Carpentry is the game of board control. The idea is to maximize bonuses while going as fast as possible. There isn?t much else to it, which is the reason its more difficult to create a "guide". So let?s start with the basics: piece rarity.

there are two things we will note.
The first tip is to make your four sections? square. Those shapes fit the best with the most common pieces, as they are either very enclosed, or spread out, but 4/5 of the most common pieces keep square shape holes square, and so they are the easiest to finish. Strive for squares!
The second tip is to go for grain bonuses. They are achieved by setting the lines on each piece to the lines on the carpentry board. Not instead of masterpieces, but in addition to them. A free bonus is a good goal to strive for. In general, 3/5 of the main pieces (3,4,5) always come as the grain going by the long side of the piece. Once a piece is squared, using these pieces along with pieces 1,2 that come in both grain variations should lead to a few grain bonuses. Go for the bonus!

Carpentry is effected by speed greatly. The top players learn to play fast, without screwing up. Or atleast if you do screw up/didn?t get lucky getting the piece, you atleast wont get a penalty for playing slowly.
Before getting into grain bonus carpentry, if you aren?t that good at the actual puzzle, Arcturous has a guide with many good tips. Watch him!
50 mins of pure gold. I can?t do better.

Grain Bonus Carpentry:

The first step to learning how to Carp with grain bonuses is to learn the way the pieces spawn. There are three type of pieces.

1. Pieces that always spawn the same direction(Y,L,I,N)
2. Pieces that spawn in either direction(P,F,T,U,Z)
3. Pieces that are symmetrical and can always be rotated to horizontal.(X,V,W)
4. Putty always follows grain bonus

Aside from that, heed my second tip and get the bonuses you can.

there's a nice table here


for competitions, one big combo does the trick. MP14+, including 2-3 grain bonuses is a nice goal.
for stats, IO hyper-ranking. Take your time when you screw up, and doing well just leave after a combo.
For getting inc on pillages, play well without mistakes. And get lucky. Lots Of Luck.


I am just erasing everything here, as I don?t feel like there is much to make a guide on. The idea is to play stupidly fast and always MP/FM. Same is for stats, IO hyper-ranks and competitions. If you want to watch great patchers, geologist/nickbush are fine. Although you'd be better off just practicing and going stupidly fast.


Gunning is a game that varies between goals. We shall note the different ways to gun.
It is important to know, that your rank is based purely on your segment. Meaning, in other puzzles you start on booched and rank as you go. Gunning is based purely on how many guns you filled vs how much time you spent in puzzle. Plus, a penalty for doing an accident.
This is why, for example, gunning can get inc even for a 15 sec segment, while all other puzzles need much longer on a puzzle to inc.

for competitions, we need to find a way that abuses the gunning mechanics. So, if you <almost> fill 4 cannons, wait for the DR, and fill them after the DR, the previous bits of time won?t count for your final time, and you will get 4 successful guns in record time. Then just play gunning ?for stats? until a 1min segment. If the segment is under 1min it won?t count.
for stats, knowing the half gun loop is fun. Here is a video of me without much exp:
and we have a vid from geo!
For getting inc on pillages/to fill as many guns as possible, play well without mistakes, get used to max speed. Freestyle gunning. We will take tzzs guide for this part, but I will add that seeing board structures is good to know where you can get some speed with loops.

Freestyle gunning

Full speed gunning

Duty Navigation

Duty navigation is all about making constellations. Combos are possible, but don't try for them, it's difficult and basically not worth it. The key points are organizing your board to avoid accidental breaks, while leaving extra pieces available to break if you don't get the star pieces you need soon enough. Breaking random groups of 3 while not messing up your constellation is useful in giving you more room to get that last color you need. Duty navigation is probably the hardest puzzle to rank up. It's very difficult to score well at lower ranks. Try for longer sessions, and have some patience.

9 star Duty Navigation Video

Same for competitions, stats and holding inc. Not much to it. Although knowing how to hyper-rank without an IO is an important skill.
for competitions, just play. Preferably 9 stars.
for stats, IO hyper-ranking won?t do the trick. You will be sent to bnav. So, there are two main ways to hyper-rank. Use this one:
swabbie a ship, raise bilge to the max. play 4-5 min increments, dismiss, wait for 1 min and take puzzle again. If you wait less than 1 min there is a penalty for returning to the station.
For getting inc on pillages, play well without mistakes.

Treasure Haul

TH is a game of speed. The idea is to clear as much as humanly possible in record time. So there are a few tips to get going, bar just practice and keep on getting faster.
A. start clicking randomly while the puzzle is loading the pieces and a bunch of stuff usually breaks.
B. click during the clearing of a combo/chain. Just keep on clicking. At any cost. Eventually the combo will stop and you will ease into another one.
C. click on opposite sides of the board. The idea is to search for combos on one side while the other is clearing.
TH Video

Treasure haul With Chests
The goal here is to get out as many chests as possible, the main idea is to leave one or 2 red gems at the top of your screen to get out a chest quickly once it comes. Note that this will wreak your rank, as your special pieces are being used for an external goal other than clears. Chests just don?t give enough rank. Get a TH map for hyper-ranking.


*no comps have TH.*
For stats: play well. A tip for hyper-ranking is play quickly to get a combo in 30 sec and dismiss. You can re-join TH by clicking on the hold.

A few other factoids: Quick Puzzling from booched
You don?t start your station on incredible. You start on booched. If you want your average to be good, you will need to learn how to start a board puzzling quickly. Luckily, tzz has compiled examples:

Fast sailing bingo

fast start bilging


Fast carp holes

This one is a little bit forced, and just filling the holes fast usually works better, but if you see a good opportunity to get an early bonus, it can really help boost that first duty report up. Here's a video that used the bonuses.

Carp video with fast bonus


There are 3 key points to notice in the ?fast start? rigging video. The 1st is the quick clears of 4 and 6 on the 1st 3 pulls. Getting a non-zero score as fast as possible is important. The 2nd is the 10 with a loop to get an initial sparkle. The 3rd is the big 20+clear. This gives a strong sparkle which allows you to start playing normally. It also, gives a tar and hook to get your started.

fast start rigging video

Crafting Puzzles

oi. Where to start? This game has the biggest disparities between the top players and the bottom players. Hard to learn, but once you do its very luck based. So the guide will have a few parts.
there are a good amount of videos in my distilling playlist titled "start_X".
practice this before going deep into the guide. Just practicing the start and dismissing is good practice to get used to the controls. Don?t continue the guide without getting used to the controls of the game.

After you are done with that, sonnyz has the tips. Old but gold.

Get used to speed, get a bit more lucky. Here is one tip sonnyz missed.
climbing the ladder with 2+ pieces is a thing. Nice timing on it too.

Aside from this, be careful not to clear a row of browns. Yay.
oh and I wish you luck. There are times where you essentially can?t get a high CC count because two spices block a regular non-white piece and make it un-moveable. Nothing you can do.
One more thing. Get the rows of CCs, then DISMISS. Rely on only 1 part of a combo. For bottom players it helps to work on your skills and focus on getting more CCs, for the top players a dismissed CC11 is better than a CC11+CC1 for some reason. Likely starting a new combo effects it somehow. Thanks sav.


a separate version of the alchemy section, can be found here:
Alchemistry is a simple game about mixing colors. There is no time limit, so I guess it is a game about patience? Feel what boards work more than others.
As you know, there are puzzles with varying levels of difficulty. It is important, in Alchemistry to know how to play all four stages.

Stage 1: the start: basic labor. The two main color boards.
Tips you need to know before going into this section:
1. Here, you can learn about how the puzzle works. There is a major bonus for filling a certain number of colors, and a lesser bonus for filling some of the same color.
2. No time limit, so focusing on filling as many colors as possible, and then as many of the same color as possible, is key.
3. dismissing the puzzle doesn?t hurt your rank, or count towards your time limit. This can, and should be used to search for the boards which help you score better.
4. if you want to rank quickly, playing the starting boards fast is crucial. One progresses from novice to neophyte with 5 mins of gameplay, I?d recommend finishing 1-2 boards before reaching neophyte, as the puzzle isn?t as fun with the bad/beginner boards.
5. crossover pieces are defined as pieces that can reverse the order of the way the colors spawn on the board, meaning if yellow is coming from the left, and green is coming from the right, the piece will make yellow on the right and green on the left. These pieces are crucial, without them pieces couldn?t get to the far sides of the board on the other side.

So, let?s go to the first board.
There are only two colors. Obviously. To max out the bonus, search for a board where you can clear 7-11 of the bottles on the bottom with the same color. This may take a while, but it will help you to rank faster.

A two main color board: got lucky and didn?t have to dismiss.

The second board is a similar concept, but you want to dismiss until you can fill 6 of the same color+3 different colors. Note that for this you need the colors to correspond with where they are on the board to avoid crossover pieces. Meaning, if yellow is on the left, yellow bottles on the far right will be harder to fill. So if the colors are far from each other, bottles of the same color have lots of colors in between them, are all weaknesses of a board that you should consider when dismissing a board.
A two color, mixed board: dismissed a few. Still super lucky board.

Stage 2: skilled labor.
Tips you need to know before going into this section:
6. the pieces in the top middle are key. Don?t start a board unless you can guarantee three streams of the center color can be achieved. Notice here, in one picture its possible, but not in the other. The center color has 3 ways to create streams of it, and the corner colors have 4. But, at this stage to get a 5 color clear, we need 3 streams from the center, and two from the others. And so the top middle pieces become crucial tools.

7. if you do any clear without 4 colors, you are doing alchemy wrong and need to work on choosing better boards. Also you want to do a 5 color clear atleast once per game.
8. after every board, any piece that has color in it, even if it isnt used to fill a bottle, will vanish and allow a new one to take its place. There are some pieces that are worse than others, take away pieces that hurt your position.
9. prioritize the filling of bigger bottles when possible.

I?ve lost the footage of the two bottles fill, and I got apprentice so theres no going back. So we will add the footage of the 3 cleared.
Finding a board:
Don?t break a bottle. That is a mistake due to playing fast. I really should recheck the bottles.

Stage 3: the bonuses
The difference between this section and the others, is simple tips to maximize your bonus pieces.
10. a bonus crossover piece can be used twice. http://prntscr.com/uuylag
The bonus piece here is scored twice.

Bottles that you don?t finish filling don?t count toward your score. In addition, if you clear more bottles than there is room for on the bottom, it takes the better ones. (for example, in the picture above I?m clearing 7 bottles with room for 3 on the bottom. The game will auto-select the better bottles.
For this segment, ?killing a bottle? is defined as filling a bottle without a good score, and keeping note and making sure that a killed bottle won?t count to the score, as mentioned in the previous comment.
11. if you can?t fill 4 colors, consider killing a bottle to then use it to complete a fire red. This is done to prop up the other bottles. NEVER should a killed bottle count to the score.

Quicksilver is a piece that can fill any color. It is scored lower than a color fill. Here is now to use it:
12. No witch doctors. Voodoo or bust. Wasting a board to set-up voodoo is good, using the tip above that the highest bottles count. A 5/4 clear with quicksilver is better. Unless you are eyeing specific bottles for your combo
13. mid-game quicksilver clear should have 5+ colors, as quicksilver doesn?t give as much of a bonus as 5 regular colors. Similar to the way that connecting two colors from opposite sides of the board gives an added bonus.

As the boards progress, and especially for competitions, knowing where to spend the time is key. I would recommend, every round should take 2 mins, unless you see a path to get another color in.
Here is an entire game, split up because I wasn?t sure how much time it would take:


A separate document of the shipwright section can be found here:
Shipwright is the game of luck.
Considering the games in puzzle pirates, that’s quite the statement. Every game in puzzle pirates has RNG involved, but shiprwight for the tactics are failry simple, leading for a heavy amount of relyance of luck. Meaning your goal isnt to outplay other players, its to outluck them. And the ultimates (and anyone leg or below tbh) know how to maximize the options to luck. So this guide will be going over a few tactics. For this guide, “piece” is defined as one if the 25 tiles on the board and “pattern” is defined as one of the six patterns with names on the bottom of the puzzle.
Oh. This guide ill assume you know how all of the patterns that can be placed + their names. If you don’t know, yppedia can help: https://yppedia.puzzlepirates.com/Shipwrightery
Before we talk about the board, lets talk about pieces.
Shipwright has four moves with restriced movement.
‘black’ moves side-to-side. ‘yellow’ moves diagonally.
‘brown’ moves up-to-down. ‘white’ has no movements, but can be moved.
Gold can’t be moved, and is somewhat of a ‘joker’ that also boosts the scoring mildly.
Aside from those movements, remember that in shipwright, you don’t add pieces to the board, you move them. This means that for moving pieces, pieces can move any piece that the ‘swap’ can do. I couldn’t find a way to write this well, but the idea is that, for example, a black piece can move diagonally, only if the piece diagonal to it is a yellow, in addition to the fact that a black piece can always move side-to-side regardless of what is there except gold. In addition, you must get your moves in before the water reaches the tiles, otherwise you will loose a piece. We will get more into this on tip 7.

The starting board already has a ton of tactics to it. Lets have a look at it:

Also, rigging, cannon and sail will always spawn.
Let’s talk about scoring. Shipwright is scored based on combos. To combo in shipwright, you need to place as many patterns as possible, without moving a single piece on the board between combos. Hence tip 1.
1. Aside from one exception, tip 2, never move a piece if there is a pattern that can be placed.
Let’s talk about OT. Overtime (a.k.a OT) in crafting puzzles, is the time you get clears after you cap the number of moves. The first board of shipwright ends after 3 moves, so after 3 moves the board will freeze into place and you can get clears. But this is where the power of OT shines. If the board has 3 moves, squeaking by with 4-5 moves will increase the score drastically, and if we want to rank, which is what this guide is about, maximizing every board is key.
2. Maximize your OT in any way possible: the first board maximizing OT is impossible bar the sail piece pretty much, but in general for the rest of the boards you want to even break a good combo in order to get a nice OT.
Okay. Now that we got the basics out of the way, have a nice look at the first board. We only have 3 patterns, and lots of the brown pieces in every place other than what fits the 3 patterns. So, how can we maximize the board? All players can get 3! We need more!!!
So, let’s move to a talk about luck. There are two kinds of ways to luck in shipwright, and one extra risky kind, which is the two of them combined.
Type 1: try setting up for a pattern you have in the lineup. These are patterns you can’t currently build, because one or more of your patterns need more pieces of a given type than currently exist on the board. For example, if you have flag, and two whites but no available brown, but the two whites side-by-side next to another combo, hoping to spawn a brown, giving you a flag.
Type 2: try setting up for a pattern you have the pieces for, but isn’t currently in the lineup. For example, if after the combo you have 3 unused yellows, try stacking them, you just might get rigging.
Risky type: set-up somewhat a piece you don’t have. For example, do the type1 example without flag as a pattern in the lineup.
3. If you have a pattern you can’t place on the board because the pieces used to make it are already used or don’t exist, try to build the pattern next to a build and try to get lucky. If you have time.
4. If you have pieces that you aren’t using for your combo, think if they build a pattern, and if they do build it. If it spawns, you will be ready.
5. Don’t let time go to waste. Out of tips 3 or 4, or even both, there is always something to be done, some way to get lucky. Nothing is off the table in your pursuit of ultimate.
One final talk before we address the first board. In puzzle pirates ‘rated’ refers to when the game can affect your rank, for better or for worse. In shipwright, the game becomes ‘rated’ when the fifth piece has been placed or overtime has been reached. This allows a shipwright player to pick and choose which boards they would like to play, and a good shipwright player knows to use this feature to their advantage.
6. Pick boards that allow for some luck. Meaning, try to be more aggressive with 3,4 before the game becomes ‘rated’.
So! We finally are ready to tackle the first board!!
What’s the best way to get a nice OT? Well we need to use tips 3 and 4 together. The board that isn’t being used for a combo is: all of the browns. We have 15 unused brown pieces that we can try to get lucky with. First we will analyze what pieces we can get lucky on. Immediately, the patterns “bollard”, “pump”, “hatch”,” gaff” come into mind as far as a 3 piece goes, and the patterns “barrel”,” boom”,” yard”, “rudder”, “mast” come to mind. Let’s assume we are only trying to get lucky and spawn 1-2 pieces, to create 1-2 patterns. Here is the video. For the record: I try to luck the pieces: “bollard”, “pump”, “hatch”,” gaff”,” boom”,” yard”.
I hope that I explained all of the tactics that went into this video:
After analyzing the first board, the rest of the boards play pretty similar toward each other. The gameplay goes somewhat like this:
At the start of the game, control your board until you are certain that your first combo can be a vegas+, and the combo must end with the bigger piece. As any combo.
At the mid-game, just do as many combos as possible, while enabling an endgame.
At the end-game, make 1 big combo into OT.
All of the combos, follow a pattern of tips:
7. Bigger pieces come last. Combing the bigger patterns, the extra points for the bigger pattern will get combo-ed.
8. “pulltheweak”: the pattern on the bottom right can’t be made, let the water remove it, and replace it with another pattern. Perhaps that piece is easier to build. The piece on the far bottom right is the one that gets pulled, moving left as more pieces go along. Aside from if the pattern that would get pulled can’t be placed, use your intuition and find other situations that are worth pulling.
9. Gold pieces gives a bonus that combos, so try to use the golds on the 5 pieces so you combo ‘2 in 1’. Or if you have pieces equal in scoring to one another, delay the triggering of the gold.
10. Prioritize making patterns built from a pieces that are more common with the board.
I’ll attach a few videos, so you can see my play-style. In addition, ill attach timestamps to see each tip in action. (aside from the video “classic OT mistake”, where I do a mistake purposefully).
Tip1 examples: pretty much all of the videos, all of the time
Tip2 examples: shipwright 2, 4:50-. Shipwright 3, 3:01 (an example of what not to do).
shipwright 7, 4:51-. Those are the examples to learn from, although all of the other boards apply this rule.
Tip3 examples: shipwright 2, 2:49. (using the hatch and not bollard), shipwright 5, 0:53. Shackle on the mast. Shipwright 7, 0:46. Gaff.
Tip4 examples: shipwright 2, 3:39. Preparing bollard. Shipwright4, 2:29. Prepared ‘jib’ twice, forgot to trigger jib first so tactic didn’t come to play. Oh well. Atleast in shipwright 6, 1:05 I prepared shackle twice and remembered. Shipwright 6, 3:47.
Tip5 examples: this tip is a more general rule. I was speedrunning the beginner boards, so I rushed my spare time. But, all examples from tips 3,4 fit tip 5.
Tip6 examples: shipwright 2, 0:40. Shipwright 5, 0:58.
Tip7 examples: pretty much all of the videos, all of the time
Tip8 examples: shipwright 5, 3:10. Shipwright 7, 4:41.
Tip9 examples: shipwright 5, 2:06.
Tip10 examples: at shipwright 1:54 I realized I built without thimble, then went to do it.

For competitions, the idea is to be riskier. For a good combo, the first streak must be amazing, the second one must just reach OT, and the OT must be as good as humanly possible. So yhea, when I said SW was the game of luck I wasn’t kidding. One day I will record a (good and bad) comp segment.

a separate document for blacksmithing can be found here:
Blacksmithing is the game of planning.

The game is built of 3 rounds: gold, platinum, and silver.
In general, the idea is to rack up bonuses during the gold and platinum rounds, while thinking about a solid silver finish.
The goal for the gold and platinum rounds, are judged by doing as many ?set?s as possible, defined as playing one of each number, or one of each chess piece. The points for alternating between a set of chess pieces, and a set of numbers, is big. So don?t just go for sets, go for alternating them.
A few tips for the first section:
1. dismissing a board can be done if no move has been made. Always find an alternating set before starting board as the first 8 moves / 6-3 moves if you are on an earlier board.
2. prioritize the elimination of ?dangerous pieces?, defined as pieces that lead to two pieces or less. Knight or rook in a corner, 4 in the center, or bishop around the edges are the entire list in this section if all slots are in the board.
3. if you see a game with a large amount of queens kings and rooks, prioritize their elimination. The reason here is that they send to the edges, and if too many pieces are on the sides you can get locked from the center.
4. go into the next stage when as many pieces are silver as possible. No pieces can be gold or platinum.
5. the rum jug is granted when a player finishes an entire set of a round,
The goal for the silver pieces is eliminating them, leaving no pieces on the board.

The guide will split between the four board types, each one has a different playstyle. Type 1: only numbers 1-3, Type 2: numbers 1-3, chess pieces rook,bishop,knight, Type 3: second type, including fours and knights, without rum jug, Type 4: same as type 3, with the rum jug.

Getting started / board type 1:
The first board is a chance to push for a high rank fast. The idea is to make as many sets as possible, as fast as possible, while making sure to get a perfect board.
Then once you are left at the end, pause the game and analyze:

board type 2:
the next board will have alternating sets, without queens and fours. The advantage for this board, if getting an ?alternating set? is the easiest on this board. Use it well!
Then once you are left at the end, pause the game and analyze:

board type 3:
this board is the most difficult. Just do the best you can + speed, using the tips above, and you will be fine. I?ve attached two boards just because its important.
Board 1:
board 2:

board type 4:
I actually got lucky, and got the masterpiece on the first try. Hopefully this gives a bit of insight.

For competitions, I guess stick to masterpieces, because if you don?t have a masterpiece you won?t place well. Any ?sets? you get, bonus. Any ?alternating sets?. Bonus. Any ?double, triple, etc?, bonus. Go get?em.

Weaving is the game of bonuses. Everything gives a bonus. The important bonuses are focusing on a bingo+ or an unbeweaveable.
The power of the unbeweaveable:
Unbeweaveable scores high. Combo-ing the unbeweaveable combos the bonus, and so trying to go for unbeweaveables is the way to go.
So, what is an unbeweaveable?
Clearing 4 colors on the same swing. This is rough to accomplish. I'm not the best at this, watching Jiyuu on YT or twitch is the best as she's the best unbeweaver by a mile, I'll try to give a bit into my/her thought process.
Think ahead ? every color must have a place on the board. Meaning no matter what colors, you get, they have a designated location. The board is super small, a color without space can ruin a good board. (a common tactic is to stack a color without space in board)
Calculate clears ? make sure stuff combos. To calculate a clear, count how many pieces are in each column.
Bottom of the board ? make sure as much of your board combos as possible.
Play piece by piece. Think of the various locations and choose the one that gives you the best chances. Ill attach a few moves me and jiyuu agreed were clever. Who knows? Maybe people here will surpass me.

Foraging has two separate settings.CI foraging and regular foraging.
CI foraging: speed is key you have two minutes to forage as many chests as puzzles.
Regular foraging: clear chests in the least # of moves as possible.
Now most people think that each version is disconnected from each other. Efficiency and speed are two unrelated goals, so perhaps the way to play each version is different? Right?
The methods for efficiency and speed overlap. For example, getting stuck hurts speed as well as it makes you less efficient. For the sake of this guide, I will put the more efficient parts in the regular foraging section, and the speed parts in the CI section. If you want to improve in one of them, read both.

Regular foraging:
The mechanics are explained by jice:
I?ll go into the important bits here:
Always combo: try to clear all of the chests at the same time. In the guide you will see which combos score better than others.
The first thing every player should know about, is the Foraging Bug #1. If no pieces cascade/break after you clear your combo of crates, the combo scores as a 0. It's annoying, but simple to avoid if you know about it. Example can be seen in jices vid.
The second bug, is if you clear any pieces other than crates in the middle of a clear, if there isn?t also a chest cleared at the same time ; it will reset the combo. Don?t let your combos reset!

to hyper-rank, the 'practice' button is handy. Apparently dismissing before another chest is loaded also does the trick if you don?t want to see how well you played.
a bit of my playing. Hopefully it will give you an idea. The vids are a bit shorter than a full guide by Jice.
***for comps, make sure you do a practice segment. Be super-efficient. Clear three chests in one combo. And, more importantly, stall to make the segment take 1 minute. ***

CI Foraging
Jice is better than me. Read up!
some of the tips apply to regular foraging also.
Carousing Puzzles

I'm not that good at most carousing puzzles. As I get better, I'll add stuff.

Team Rumble
If you want to "insta" a bot in team rumble, a charge group of 14-16 should do the trick. To play it safe, you should also added 10-15 quick pieces to the drop-off for bruises.

A few team rumble punches

1v1 Rumble
Bludgeon choice.
anything of: Blackjack, Hammer, Skull Rings, Skeleton Bone
Works fine, fish, Rope coils is close second.

So. Just striking isn?t good because of patterns. If your whole board has the same pattern its super easy to clear. Same for sprinkling. So, learn to bruise fast.
Any added pieces to a strike turn into bruises, a.k.a those black thingies that are super hard to clear. There is a max bruising.
3-9 (as per the example: 3 punches, 9 bruises max.
4-13 (as in: 4 punches, 13 bruises max.

Practice bruising. Aside from that, there are a few tactics:
Getting sabotaged is the worst case-scenario. Play fast!
Full bruises are very excessive. With no bludgeons its necessary, with bludgeons I'd recommend going for less bruises and more strikes. Helps with the sabotaging problem also.
A board that you can create bruising by clearing the center and using the sides to bruise is key. In the example above, I created 9 bruises manually. This sinks the board faster and isn't recommended as the game progresses.
At the end, if you bruised well, you need less bruises.
Mix attacks. If all of your attacks are the same, you become predictable for sabotage. Vary it up!
Greedy bashing is a great way to make a quick buck in-game. This is the process where people head out on a grand frigate to get as many greedies as possible. Thanks to 'Walkingout' for the help.
The goal is to fire as much strikes of 12 pieces as possible, in a single punch Here is a video courtesy of Walkingout:
A few tips, aside from the super lame 'play fast':
Board half full and board not-half-full gets played differently. If the board is half full, look for groups of 7+ pieces, either split or connected, and build a strike up from there. If the board is half-empty, build whatever colors are convenient.
If you are near death/attacked/the enemy is near death, use your intuition when to fire off premature attacks.
Search for an opponent before planning a strike. A strike is no use if there is no-one to strike!
If there are 4+ pirates on you, 2/3+ if damaged, don?t build and use only the board to make smaller strikes. You can't strike if you're dead!
Have a counter to monitor your score. These are 100% allowed with the TOS. Good to make sure you are improving
Read this: http://yppedia.puzzlepirates.com/Drinking#Game_Play. I would put money, that just by reading the rules most players would boost their rank up to master-GM. How many points is a row? What does each mug do? Read up.
Mug choice
1000 4 or 5 piece: Stein
1000 6 piece: Stein
1500 4 piece: Stein
1500 5 piece: Stein
1500 6 piece: Stein
2000 4 piece: Horn
2000 5 piece: Stein
2000 6 piece: Goblet
2500 4 piece: Horn, tankard (horn is probably better, but tankard usually beats it)
2500 5 piece: Goblet, Horn, tankard (horn is probably the best, but tankard usually beats it)
2500 6 piece: Goblet
3000 4 piece: Horn, tankard (horn is probably better, but tankard usually beats it)
3000 5 piece: horn
3000 6 piece: pitcher (don?t play this)

I?m not sure about this, tzz has his own opinions. Check them out

General rules for most settings
Drinking is all about board control. Here are a few simple rules to help you control the board. They aren't things that work 100% of the time but are great general guidelines.

1. Don't chase a row your opponent has control over. Let them win it, and focus on taking complete control over every other row, once it's gone. Or, focus on taking a row horizontal to it and sabotaging.
2. sabotage your opponent's rows. This is the process of making an enemy row go down from 200 pts to 100 pts. Read the rules! Opportunities will come.
3. Play the highest piece whenever possible, on an opponent's stain whenever possible. Although be mindful when it comes to rows.
4. Don't finish a row worth 100, unless its split 3 pieces each, or you need it cleared to mess up their other rows. Keeping your board stains+control is more important.
5. Don't finish a 6-7 color row in the early game. Drinking is a game of board control. Why sabotage your position for 200-300 points? In general, not worth it.
6. If your opponent ever has 4 out of 6 colors in a row, try to block the 7th spot, with a piece of a different shape and color next to the 7th spot. Blocking is also useful for most of your opponent's rows in the late game as well. Especially with the chalice, even block before the 7th. Don?t block opponents 200 pts rows. Let them take it! If they sabotage themselves that?s not your problem.
7. if you see you are losing, taking risks is advantageous. Especially chasing kegs. Can set you up with a nice advantage quickly. Better than loosing 100%.
8. Be mindful of every row that each player controls. If you control a row and your opponent puts pieces in it, you must build on that row to turn the bad play into a nice advantage.
9. build your rows on your opponents' rows/chased 3-3 rows. This is good for maintaining board control after a row is taken.

These rules are just ideas, that if followed you should get good results consistently. Knowing when to take risk, as well as seeing possible win conditions are a good idea as well.

drinking with horns
1. If You're using a horn, Clear every row you can.
2. If you're not using a horn but your opponent is, clear every unblocked row, even if it has a barrel in it.
3. throw 1,2 out in pursuit of a win condition.

Aside from that, I feel like a few words about board control might be a good idea.
Zuczawang in chess is a concept where one player had to play a move, when every single move hurts them.
Drinking has this concept. If a board has your opponent?s pieces and none of yours, every move you play adds on to their rows. A good drinker makes sure their pieces always have a place on the board that will give them an advantage as supposed to the opponents.

Classic Drinking
classic drinking is by far the most fun version as far as I?m concerned.
First of all, the ruleset is ?board stained or all passed out?. This allows the good drinker to control the win conditions to their advantage. Because the board ends when you control, try being ?winning? as long as possible.
Second, stains are important. Stains give a player 200-point bonus if they have a majority at the end. This makes board control, in addition to zuczawang so important.
Third, only one piece is spawned at a time. Controlling the board allows for you to use to your advantage as many pieces as possible, as supposed to falling prey of zuczawang.
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Have you considered formatting this and submitting it to the YPPedia where it can be enjoyed by the whole community?
Retired as of August 2015.
Sic transit gloria mundi.
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probably not. i might try formatting it properly though.
ive attached a link to my google drive. probably better for people here anyway.
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So like 99% what Tzz said.

I feel you could've just left a post on that thread if you had a few insights to share.
Ryuken on Emerald.
I made a Distilling guide here, and a guns one somewhere.

Offering docktart-citadel front row seats since Aug2020 :D
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probably not. i might try formatting it properly though.
ive attached a link to my google drive. probably better for people here anyway.

Yes, on second thought, if this is, ah, lifted from Tzz's post, he and Grey Havens hold the copyright and you don't.

That is why I usually suggest that people who create grand documents put them on YPPedia, because the licensing there permits copying, modification, and forking in the way you've done here, except legally.
Retired as of August 2015.
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