Sailing is a dangerous job, in the 16th century many went to the seas and were never seen again by friends and loved ones. The danger you can encounter in this game ranges from natural disasters, pirates attack and problems like home sickness and fighting among the sailors. Some of these problems are minor while others can be disastrous if left alone.

Disasters are things that can happen on a journey. You can divide disasters into two categories, the ones that happen on a journey and the ones that happen during or due to a battle.

Most disasters can also be solved by going into a town, this is the best solution if you don't have the required materials to stop the disaster

For a quick list on disasters, take a look at the official UWO website:

Other helpful "linked" pages relating to this topic:

  • Skills (all links found to date)
  • Items (all links found to date)

Tip: before going out to sea.. program your "Custom Slots" in the upper right corner of your screen, with the "items" you will need for "quick action/response" during a "disaster" (on land or sea) ... you do not need to program the "Skills" they are in the next button.... but remember to "activate" them.. when you get onboard, or as needed.. and remember, they will use "vigor and some items" when activated.. so have "items" onboard to compensent and "replenish" ... "vigor, disease, items". If you cannot activate them, they are not applicable to the "task" you are trying to perform. The "Use Item" button is also useful, but it will take a bit longer to "active" when needed, but it does store other items you could not put into "Custom Slots".

Normal disasters

Normal disasters are disasters that randomly take place, and aren't directly a consequence of a battle.
There are also two 'guards' for natural disasters. Seagulls protect you against disasters as long as they're there, and your problems automatically get dismissed once a dolphin pops up around your ship.


Description: Run out of food or water on the open seas
Side effect: Reduce Sailors Loyalty and increase in fatigue. Losing crew if left untreated.
Solution(s): Survival skill reduces losing crews and Frugality skill reduces provision consumption..

  • Use Fishing skill
  • "Convert" cargo to "Provisions"
    • Go to your "Ship Button", "Cargo", "Convert to Supplies"


  • Use Procurement skill
  • Active the "Procurement Skill" during a storm or rain.. and it will collect water for your "Provisions"
  • "Convert" alcohol to water



The sign for Malnutrition.

Description: Your sailors are underfed and need more nutrition.
Signs: A blue haze surrounds your ship.
Side effects: Will reduce loyalty and turn into scurvy if left untreated.
Solution(s): Skill: Aide – ship doctor dietetics skill or Eat food.



A player suffering from Scurvy.

Description: Sailors become sick due to scurvy.
Signs: Skulls circle around your ship.
Side effects: You lose sailors due to death by scurvy, and the durability of equipment items reduces.
Solution(s): Aide – ship doctor Dietetics skill, certain cooked items and the Pathologyskill.

Dirty deck

Description: The deck of your ship is dirty or unsanitary.
Signs: A thick brown haze can be seen above your ship.
Side effects: Equipment durability is reduced. Can also cause a rat infestation if not cured.

Rat infestation

Rat infestation

The signs of a rat infestation on a ship.

Description: There's a rat infestation on your ship.
Signs: A thick gray dust storm circles above your ship.
Side effects: The mice eat your food and the durability of equipment drops. Can cause diseases if not cured.
Solution(s): Eradication skill, Cat ornament


Side effects: Sailors start to die off one by one, might jump over to other ships in your fleet if not cured.Can also decrease the durability of your equipment.



Description: Sailors are fighting with each other.
Side effects: Their loyalty towards you decreases.



Description: Sailors long for home.
Side effects: Sailors drop in loyalty
Solution(s): Musical Instruments (Flute, drums , violin etc)


Side effects: Anxiety reduces loyalty of sailors
Solution(s): Musical Instruments


Side effects:Frustrated sailors drop in loyalty
Solution(s): Aide as ship doctor with Recreation skill


Description: Sailors suffering from insomnia cannot fall asleep.
Signs: A deep blue cloud circled above sail.
Side effects: Sailor's loyalty decrease everyday.


Side effects: Reduce sailor numbers and raise fatigue



Description: A fire has erupted!
Signs: Flames dance on your ship.

  • In battle by enemy cannon shot or using item in melee.
  • cooking in the sea.

Side effects:
Ship durability decreases over time, cargo may be burned (one of the most inflammable cargo will be reduced 20%) and unequipped equipments will drop in durability.
Inflammable cargo: Foodstuff, Luxury, Spices, Medicine. Fibre, Fabrics, Fragrances, Sundries
Fire proof cargo: Seasonings, Livestock, Dye, Alcohol, Ores, Industrial Material, Weapons, Firearms, Crafts, Arts, Precious metals, Gems.



Tips: Be very careful when you are hauling spices like pepper back from India. One guide I read said to get cotton fabrics too, so that if a fire starts, the cheap fabrics burn instead of precious pepper.


Description: Ship has sprung a leak!
Signs: Water fountains from your ship.
Side effects: Ship durability decreases over time.
Leaking ship will keep dropping durability, speed drops, will get hit more often by cannons in battle, unequipped equipments will drop in durability.

Rudder damaged

Description: Rudder has been damaged!
Signs: No visible signs.
Side effects: Turning speed is greatly reduced.

Damaged sail

Description: Sail have been damaged!
Signs: Small tears in ship's sails.
Cause: by storms or hit from enemy cannons.
Side effects: Sailing speed reduced.


Description: Eerie singing voices can be heard...
Signs: Eerie singing voices can be heard.
Side effects: Crewmen will jump overboard, one or two men at a time, until counter-measures are taken, or all crew are gone (whichever comes first).

Note that any musical instrument will dispel the sirens' effect, not just those listed above.

Notes: Even after "the men have regained their senses," lost crewmen cannot be recovered with lifesavers. Sirens are typically encountered off small islands, including:

  • Balearic waters: Balearic Islands (vicinity of Palma)
  • Tyrrhenian Sea: Lampedusa (island north of Tripoli)
  • Jutland sea zone: Bornholm (island at south end of Sweden)
  • North Atlantic Ocean: Azores
  • Madagascar waters: Comoros (between Mozambique and north tip of Madagascar)
  • Western Caribbean: Florida Keys (between Merida and Havana)


Description: Queer algae has tangled the rudder!
Signs: Light green algae in the water surrounds your ship.
Side effects: Sailing and turning speeds greatly reduced.

Magnetic Field Disorder

Description: The ship's compass has gone crazy!
Signs: Electricity coruscates over your ship.
Side effects: Compass spins wildly, rendering it useless.

or & to compensate the problem or return to port.


Description: Ship run ashore, drop in durability, may cause "shipwreck"?
Side effects:

  • Sail away from Land
  • Use Repair skill to repair the damage caused
  • Avoid sailing to close to land.

Battle disasters


Description: Happens when a ship has zero durability or when all your sailors are killed.
Side effects: You lose some money, of which a part can be recovered by insurance and some cargo if you don't solve it.

  • the Rescue skill or simply let your ship sink.
  • Can be rescued by a fleet member and "Towed" to port
  • Shipwreck button (Loss of cargo, Ducats and Ship/Inventory Items)




Disorder among the crew.

Description: Occurs often when using the low rank Wining and Dining skill and occasionally when hit by cannon shot in battle.
Signs: Bird chirping and circling over your ship.
Side effects: Drop in cannon accuracy. Attack and defense power in ship melee battle greatly reduced. Enemy attack and defense raises.



Side effects:




Signs: Ship covers in smoke.
Side effects: Reduced cannon accuracy.
Solution(s): Mysterious feathered fan

Rough Seas

Description: Near misses from enemy cannon fire cause wave to rock the ship, causing crew members to fall overboard. Higher wave resistance lowers chance.
Side effect: Sailors will be reduced, Surgery kit and Surgery skill useless.
Solution(s): Rescue skill

Other/rumor disasters

Cargo Loss

Cause: by storms, losing melee battle, using shipwreck function or stealing sailors.
Side effects:
Solution(s): No cure.
Storage skill will lower chances to lose cargo.
Tips: Be sure you have insurance before you leave port, and if you have a disaster at sea, go to the bank when you dock.




Description: Storm will disrupt sailing in the sea, anchor your ship to reduce damage to ship, lose of sailors and cargo.Have a high waves maybe cause leaking.
Solution(s): Having Wave Resistance of 11 or higher will allow you to sail during a storm and even speeding your ship up but damage to your ship will still happen and sails may rip. 
Tips: Best advise (found to date):

  • Put your "sail down", "anchor"
  • Ride out the storm (not recommended, sometimes impossible)
  • Some damage/disasters will occur, but they are manageable
  • Survival skill
  • (“Balm” was used in Uncharted Waters 2)


Description: A large white grey octopus will attack your ship
Signs: Ship is wrapped by tentacles of a large Octopus
Side effects: Damage to crew and parts.
Solution(s): Kraken repellent
Note:This was not a joke, though like many sailors you may think it is.


Description: Sharks begin following your ship and harassing your sailors
Signs: Three (?) sharks circle your ship
Side effects: Lose 1-3 sailors, bigger ships are unaffected, unable to fish
Solution(s): Shark repellent

Gust of winds

Side effects: The wind will changed the course of the ship and reduce speed, sails could also be damaged.
Solution(s): Aide duties Chief navigator with Windbreak, Special made durable mast, Figurehead with Crisis Protection.

High Waves

Side effects: Huge waves cause sinking,reduce in maximum durability.
Solution(s): Aide duties Chief Navigator with skill Breakwater?

Broadside Waves?

Side effects: The wave will change the course of the ship, sailors overboard, rudder could also be damaged.
Solution(s): Aide duties Chief Navigator with skill Breakwater?, Custom made anti-waves armor