"We’re trying to build a story that plays out over hundreds of hours – some of the seeds planted early on have yet to bear fruit, and some of the deeds you see in the main Story that are rubbing you the wrong way will have consequences in the future."
That's one of my favorite parts of this game - bosses aren't just "one and done" fights. We keep running into the same folks over and over again. They grow in power as we do so the game keeps pace, and we learn a little more about them (story-wise) each time.
That, and the insane laugh-out-loud puns and pop culture gags.
I only just read through this wonderful explanation by Blind Mew (and as you are head writer, I'll join others here in saying that you and your team have done a WONDERFUL job in Pirates. I really love when I "get" one of the slightly more obscure jokes).
BUT - there is one minor point you were incorrect on, which makes me wonder now if it is a bug? You said we never fire on any ships that won't/don't fire on us on sight. This is currently incorrect. In Tradewinds Skyway, we are tasked with attacking some House Guzman ships, and they do not fire on us until they are themselves attacked. I actually just double checked this to make sure I was correct, and I can sit on top of them, fly through them, spin in circles around them without being attacked until I fire first.
As an obsessed Wizard's player, I was so excited for Pirates to come out. I've been playing for a few weeks now and absolutely love it. I am having such a good time, I have to say I think I actually like Pirates even better. I love the funny story line and see exactly what "Blind Mew'" was telling us about the thought behind the story-lines. I play with 2 grandchildren 7 and 10, and they are smart enough to get the "silliness" behind the fighting of sharks and tiny monkey dressed like conquistadors and I don't think they actually think too much about the "loot" that is gathered other than it gives them the ability to upgrade their pirate, ship and crew.
I want to add my thanks for the very detailed explanation provided, I know it was time consuming - I agree it should be posted on the Pirate101 Central website so it gets a wider audience.
Also, something i realized is that there are more personas than a pirate to take up in the game. by the time i reached cool ranch and was in my cowboy gear fighting by el toro's side, i forgot i was a pirate! i think having a rogue part of your character and also a heart of gold allows multiple playing aspects. you could be a stealing, greedy, pirate in skull island, a heroic cowboy or lawman over in cool ranch, or a swift, silent ninja in Mooshu. there are more heart of gold personas than rogue personas, so it is only fitting that your character has this morale ballance.