Lucy Liu Interview: Pirate Queen: The Forgotten Legend

"Did you know that the most powerful pirate in history was a woman?" Check out our interview with Lucy Liu and Eloise Singer about The Pirate Queen: A Forgotten Legend.

Published: March 29, 2024 8:00 AM /


The Pirate Queen key art with Lucy Liu and Eloise Singer

Recently, I had the opportunity to go hands-on with the new VR game from Singer Studios, The Pirate Queen: A Forgotten Legend, and interview Director and Executive Producer Eloise Singer, as well as Executive Producer and Voice Artist Lucy Liu.

The Pirate Queen is based on a true story and puts you directly in the boots of Cheng Shih, a pirate who took over her husband's fleet after his death and led tens of thousands of men across the sea.

Check out what we learned discussing The Pirate Queen with this duo.


The Pirate Queen Is the Tale of the Most Successful Pirate In History

When Eloise Singer first got the idea for this game, it's because a friend had approached her to ask if she knew about Cheng Shih. 

"A friend of mine said, 'did you know the most powerful pirate in history was a woman?'" – Eloise Singer

And so she started to research and discovered the story that not many people know, making it the perfect opportunity to bring it to light in the form of a VR game. When Lucy Liu joined the project, she told me about some of the challenges she experienced.

"For me it was a learning curve," Liu said. "Normally when you go into animation, sometimes by the end of the session your voice is quite strained. And they usually try to keep all the screaming to the last 15 minutes. But in this one it was so intimate and personal." 

While playing, Liu's voice is in your ear throughout the experience, helping to lead the narrative and take you from one scene to the next. While not action-oriented, The Pirate Queen's gameplay focuses much more on puzzle solving and environmental subtlety. 

Holding up a key in The Pirate Queen: A Forgotten Legend

The Gameplay in The Pirate Queen: A Forgotten Legend

Prior to our interview with Liu and Singer, I went hands-on with The Pirate Queen: A Forgotten Legend and had the opportunity to play through these puzzles and learn more about Cheng Shih's story. 

The art direction beautifully sets the scene and atmosphere as you climb up the rigging on these gigantic 19th century ships and explore dusty scrolls in moonlit cabins. There is an assistant mechanic that can make some of the more challenging puzzles a bit easier, and there are also two difficulty modes to choose from.

While there's no action or combat, The Pirate Queen's allure instead relies on immersing you in a specific point in time and discovering the secrets that await you. 

"It's not a shooting game," Liu said. "It's a game of learning through experience. Through intellect."

Though it's a relatively short experience by modern-day gaming standards, Singer and her team managed to fit a lot of detail into this small vignette of Cheng Shih's life. 

A pirate ship in moonlight in The Pirate Queen: A Forgotten Legend

Lucy Liu & Gender Equality in The Pirate Queen 

Something that both Singer and Liu talked about during our interview was the fact that the pirate Cheng Shih was one of the earliest people to really push for gender equality through her ranks. 

"She paved the way for gender equality," Singer said. "Men and women had to be treated equally on her ship. Not only did she become the most powerful pirate. But she really was at the forefront of making sure men and women were being treated equally." 

With so much media focused on male-led stories, particularly in video games, The Pirate Queen was an excellent opportunity to bring a forgotten pirate into the modern-day discussion.

"It's nice to have somebody who's not a made-up character who's a female lead," Liu said.

The Pirate Queen: A Forgotten Legend is playable on Meta Quest 2 and available through the Meta Store and Steam.

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| Staff Writer

Dan is a Boston-based writer who has been with TechRaptor since the end of 2020. He has been working in the online writing, editing and SEO space for nearly… More about Dan