"Pirates of the Spanish Main" was the first release, and hit stores on July 28, 2004. It quickly sold out in many places, resulting in a second "limited" print run which featured noticeably higher quality printing than the first print run (the first run cards appear extremely 'faded'). This set was printed in a number of languages: English, German, French and Spanish. The only other sets printed in a foreign language (German) were "Crimson Coast", "Revolution", "Davy Jones' Curse", "Mysterious Islands", and "Ocean's Edge".
The set introduced the Pirate, English, and Spanish factions, with ships for each faction ranging in size from one to five masts. Twelve named crew members, along with the generic crew of Captain, Helmsman, Musketeer, Shipwright, Oarsman, Cannoneer, and Explorer were also present for each faction. A number of generic treasure, in the form of gold pieces ranging in value from 1 to 7, as well as nine pieces of named unique treasure were included, along with an assortment of cardboard islands with blank backs.
At the 2004 Origins Awards Pirates of the Spanish Main was one of the winners of the Vanguard Awards.