BBB Strategy & AI


Hi BBB Playtesters!

I know it’s early days, but I’m looking for some insight into your strategies for BBB to help inform the AI.

Do you have any “rules of thumb” that you follow? How do you decide to spend your resources? How many ships do you like to have? How do you decide where and when to buy armour, attack, health?



I personally prefer to upgrade the settlements at least until they reach lvl 3, that’s my priority.
I don’t build more than two ships every turn, I don’t like to risk too much, and I upgrade them depending on my remaining resources, focusing on attack. 1 point every turn for the fighting ones should be the best thing. Armor is the second thing to upgrade, especially when I see enemies, and health it’s the last one to buy.
About the Buccaneers, I love so much the Bouncer.


In matches against the AI I just focus on gaining gold. So I get a diver asap to get me some invaluable gold to buy the main resources.

After that I “zerg” the ai: there’s no diplomacy so you just have to win by earning more profit. Get all 8-resource positions asap, and get 4-5 special resources. Then I level them up to “level 2” since that’s really cheap. After that I focus on defense for my towns (ai cheats or something? they keep swarming me), if defense is “high enough” I create offensive ships that can actually start shooting.

I tend to go for all the “resource gaining” buccaneers. as well as the “captain” one: having 4-5 ships stacked that all have a captain really packs a punch. Upgrades to me are always defense first. Then depending on what I have left over (wood or iron).


For me the immediate priority is making as many settlements as possible as if you start badly with resources in this game it effectively ends your game straight away. At the same time I am trying to balance upgrading my settlements and build at least 1 new ship each turn.

After that it is just a case of building up your fleet, making them strong and hiring buccaneers. Strengthening my ships mainly consists of increasing the armour and attack strength.

When it comes to buccaneers I only ever really use 3: Pointer, Bosser and Bouncer. I have on occasion also used Ballooner.

That’s all I can think of for now, will update if anything else comes to mind.


So far I’ve focused the very first few turns into getting settlements next to mines, metal feels like the most important resource to me given its scarcity and gold cost. After that I want to upgrade settlements to 3 or 4 depending on the resources around them, and also begin work on making 2 high attack and defense value ships. In my experience the AI is not very defensive minded in the early/mid game, given a few turns to build steam it’s easy to build a ship that can take whatever settlement it wants and kill whatever ships get in the way. Buccaneers I like to put on these ships would be Pointer and Bouncer, and if I happen to have the resources to afford it I also like Ballooner and Dipper.

Usually this means I’ll be a contender for the Boom points throughout, and I’ll make gains in Bounty as I begin to take the poorly defended settlements of early game AI. As time goes by it’s harder to bully them, but I generally still have enough power to maintain my lead. If the AI leading in Bounty is offscreen or I have no easy way of targeting their settlements, I instead start to equip more and more of my ships with slavers, which I’ve found to be a cheap way to try to be competitive with the Buccaneer points towards the end game.

Everything else is reacting to what the enemies throw at me, the most devastating thing I feel the AI could do to me is have a high value ship with a Sneaker on board get close to my cities, this is mostly because I feel safe in leaving them underleveled until an enemy is within range, and generally I can level up the settlements that are at risk to be equal enough in power that they’re not really under threat. As long as you keep an enemy ship to doing 4 or less damage you can stalemate at the very least, and I’ve found the AI lacks in understanding that it needs to pump up ships that are currently in combat as often as possible.


Thanks for all the feedback on your strategy and AI suggestions! Keep them coming if you have more!

If you’re playing with the AI today, you will probably notice some changes.

The AIs will give resources to other players, based on their trust for each player. The AIs maintain a trust level for every other player, which starts at the start of the game for every player. This means that when an AI takes over from a player who misses their turn or drops, it should keep up relations, at least to start with. If you’ve been an ally with another player all game and they drop out, the AI should’t suddenly turn around and attack you (unless you attack them first!).

You can also try to befriend an AI that has rare resources that you might like to trade.

The AI also tries to react to being attacked or enemies nearby, by prioritising its upgrades accordingly. It also prioritises building up its harvest, by upgrading its least developed settlements.

The is unlikely to attack a target that it cannot damage or that will result in its own death if attacked.

You should also see fewer AI ships around the map. It will try to just have a few ships at a time.

Let me know if you notice anything weird or have any suggestions! Thanks!


Is the “trust” rating based on the current standing? IE: a player who isn’t close to completing the game is trusted more than a player who is (everything else being equal of course)? If the AI would use that it could mean that the ai starts to focus on the leading player/AI a bit more, and games vs AI don’t always have a runaway that way?


It isn’t in the current build, but the next release will have the AI’s trust in the leader decreasing each turn. This happens in Neptune’s Pride too.