A Closer Look at Sea of Thieves

While we all caught a glimpse of the Sea of Thieves reveal trailer at E3, no doubt it is one of the more fascinating new IPs in Xbox One’s busy 2016 schedule.

This isn’t the first attempt at a pirate themed MMO game, but with Rare’s whimsical touch and experience, expect them to deliver an ambitious and memorable effort. Already Sea of Thieves is being touted as “the best game that Rare has ever made.”

Since it is a multiplayer game, expect a player-versus-environment element. Possible hints from the trailer suggest that skeleton pirates will be enemies and they might belong to a larger group that has an insidious octopus as their logo.

Player-versus-player portion of the game would likely be epic ship battles on the high seas. Different group will band together in massive ships to take each other out.

No MMO game is complete without distinctive classes. It’s difficult to speculate, but expect some of the familiar pirate lingo (buccaneer, privateer, cutthroat) to grace character selection. Some of the prescribed skills could include ship captaining, ship maintenance, land/sea combat expert and ship engineering. Ship maintainers could be responsible for ship upkeep with menial tasks such as raising and lower the mast and scrubbing the poop deck. Engineers will likely customize and upgrade player ships. New sails, masts, colors, canons and battering rams could be obvious upgrade parts.

Rare’s promise of ‘the freedom to play with limitless possibilities’ and user-generated content seem to go hand-in-hand. User-generated content will likely include ship customization and quest creation. Expect daily, weekly and monthly quests to make an appearance and perhaps player-created treasure hunts or raids, where pirates band together to capture the prized booty and carve their own memories.

Sea of Thieves footage was captured in real time using the impressive Unreal 4 engine. Graphically, the game sets itself apart by utilizing colorful and contrasting backdrops. SoT does have a CG movie feel to it, and some elements truly stand out. Vegetation seems alive and lush; flames in torches crackle and dance. Waves looked organic and crashed beautifully into one another. The skeleton pirates seem like they were ripped right out of a children’s pirate tale.

Rest assured knowing that Gregg Mayles, one of the Rare’s longest serving members, is Sea of Thieves’ lead designer. His experience is unmatched and worked on several of Rare’s most cherished titles. His passion for game development will no doubt resonate with his team and the game itself.

Sea of Thieves will be available on Xbox One and PC. No release date has been announced.


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