When playing Sid Meier's Pirates it crashes to the desktop when I am at sea.
Ensure that your system meets or exceeds all the listed requirements for the game. This problem most commonly occurs if one of the system requirements is not met, this is particularly important when looking at the video card. Your video card must have Hardware Transform & Lighting for the game to run correctly, this is available on the GeForce2 / Radeon 7500 and upwards.
If your video card meets the requirements and you are still encountering the problem please ensure you have the latest video card drivers installed from the manufacturers website.