When Rare, the veteran Britain games studio, first released Sea of Thieves, back in 2015, it is more than fair to say that the response was an overwhelmingly positive one. After spending years concentrating its focus on the contentious Kinect, the creators of the fabulous N64 and SNES classics Banjo-Kazooie and Donkey Kong Country revealed an online pirate-themed adventure game which saw groups of friends setting sail on to the open ocean, seeking treasure and battling other player crews. It felt like the popular developer had made a comeback, good and proper and they’d bought a modern board game style title to life, digitally.
Anticipation is Still High
Three years on, anticipation remains as high as ever, just like when you play at Canadian mobile casino. Within just five hours of last year’s closed beta test going live, Sea of Thieves became the Twitch’s most watched game, beating out even League of Legends. By the end of it, over 300 000 people had signed up to play, spending a total of two million hours and completing 4000 000 quests in the seven-day test.
That was Just the Beginning
But the beta offered only a limited idea of what Sea of Thieves has to offer. Players were able to set sail in galleons made up of four people, sloops made up of two, or player boats of one, and were then tasked with completing a series of basic fetch quests for the trading companies that were situated at the outposts around the game’s environment. Alongside either friends or strangers, players rapidly learned how to divide up the sailing jobs like steering, keeping the cannons loaded, and navigating, while finding buried treasure and battling skeleton warriors.
Further Features to Come
Missing from the beta were the Sea of Thieves features that will give the game structure and longevity:
- Public events, which will see groups of boats taking on various challenges together
- The Progression System, which will reward players for heroic actions.
More Details Emerged at Press Event
At an event for the press held at the 100-acre base for Rare in rural Leicestershire recently, more details were made available.
The Kraken, a legendary monster of the sea, which has been hinted at throughout the development period for Sea of Thieves, was both confirmed and actually sighted. Rare revealed a video of the beast, or at least part of it, with eight of its enormous tentacles bursting through the brine and ferociously attacking boats, lifting members of the crew up from the decks and throwing them into the water, and dragging entire galleons underneath the waves.
Familiar Tokens to be Made Available
Rare plans to provide many of the well-known tokens common to online multiplayer games in Sea of Thieves, including public events, ranked quests, and character progression. And all of these will be offered from within a playful, cooperative, friendly world. The closed beta, and the many hours of Twitch streams that came out of it, revealed that the idea of sharing a fantasy pirate adventure is working, and well. But Rare is well aware that the novelty value will not sustain a community for months or years. The game needs to offer depth, dynamism, and progression, and Rare intends to do exactly that.