This is a guide to water treasure hunting on maps like Indonesia, using the catamaran and your explorer in age 1/transition and some information on caravel hunting.
IMPORTANT NOTE this is not possible with melee explorers. Without the catamaran you can only hunt treasures where you can shoot the guardians from the shore.
Why do you want the ocean treasures?
Several reasons. First, they're easy to get once you get the hang of it. Secondly, you're unlikely to face competition since not many people bother with them. And third, they're pretty darn good considering you should lose no HP getting the orca/shark ones.
Examples of possible Orca and Shark Treasures, plus Bandit Catamaran Treasures
- 125 Food guarded by 2 Sharks (220 Hp, 50%rr, 75 atk)
- 150 Coin guarded by 2 Orcas (220 Hp, 50%rr, 100 atk)
- 125 Exp guarded by 2 Sharks
- 100 Wood guarded by 2 Sharks
- 200 Coin guarded by 3 Bandit Catamarans (220 Hp, 50%rr, 16 atk) - Use Caravel to get
- -5% Warship train time guarded by 2 Bandit Catamarans
The only treasures you want to take with this strategy are the melee guardians- eg Orcas and Great White Sharks. The key is to leash them near your explorer on the shore using the catamaran, then get them "stuck" on the beach, then use the dps from the catamaran and your explorer to kill both guardians. The ocean guardians actually function quite similarly to the land ones in that they have a set leash range and have a similar behavior, however they are much, much stronger. Luckily this bug allows us to quickly and safely get these treasures. Note that you cannot crackshot the ocean guardians. You will likely have to move your explorer around using the Catamaran to get into position.
Finding a suitable treasure
The ideal treasure is near the shore and guarded by orcas or sharks. See the figures below- they show some good treasure sites.
The first treasure there I had to use the catamaran to leash the orcas near enough to the shore to kill with the explorer. It takes a little trial and error, but generally as long as the shore is within leash range of the treasure you'll be able to get the guardians "stuck" on the shore, unable to fight back or move. It's important here that you keep your explorer on the shore a little ways away from the water; if you go too close they'll be able to hit you for 100 damage each bite, but if you go too far you might lose the leash range. You then simply shoot down the orcas/sharks and collect the treasure with your catamaran.
Here is an example of a treasure that's too far away:
Unfortunately treasures where the leash range doesn't touch the beach are pretty much impossible to get, as your catamaran kinda sucks and will die extremely quickly vs the orcas/sharks.
Treasure Hunting with Caravels
So let's say you've got a caravel now. Ok, so what can you safely take on?
- Both the Orca and Shark treasures you didn't get earlier are now easy. Simply tag them with a cannonball, sail to the edge of their tether zone, then shoot back. Due to the variable RoF of ships this may take a couple tries. It is important not to get hit, however, as they do alot of damage to boats too.
- The catamarans, since they do ranged damage, are easy pickings. You can take these treasures only losing ~60 hp on your 800hp boat.
- The Junks (warships) are harder, and require at least 2 caravels. They also do not leash as they have a longer range than caravels. You have to be very careful when switching their aggro, as any movement resets their HP. Generally these treasures are not worth going for.
Please put your additional knowledge/info below and I'll edit it in.