- CPU: Intel Core 2 Quad Q9450 or AMD Phenom II X6
- CPU SPEED: Info
- RAM: 4 GB
- OS: Win 10
- VIDEO CARD: Nvidia GeForce GTX 650 or AMD Radeon HD 7750
- PIXEL SHADER: 5.0
- VERTEX SHADER: 5.0
- SOUND CARD: Yes
- FREE DISK SPACE: 60 GB
- DEDICATED VIDEO RAM: 1024 MB
- CPU: Intel Core i5-4690 or AMD FX-8150
- CPU SPEED: Info
- RAM: 8 GB
- OS: Win 10
- VIDEO CARD: Nvidia GeForce GTX 770 or AMD Radeon R9 380x
- PIXEL SHADER: 5.0
- VERTEX SHADER: 5.0
- SOUND CARD: Yes
- FREE DISK SPACE: 60 GB
- DEDICATED VIDEO RAM: 2048 MB
Sea of Thieves is a 2018 action-adventure game developed by Rare and published by Microsoft Studios. The player assumes the role of a pirate who completes voyages from different trading companies. The multiplayer game sees players explore an open world via a pirate ship from a first-person perspective. Groups of players encounter each other regularly during their adventures, sometimes forming alliances, sometimes going head-to-head.
Sea of Thieves was conceived in 2014. Rare was inspired by players of PC games such as Eve Online (2003), DayZ (2018), and Rust (2018) who used the game tools to create their own stories. Rare explored different settings, such as vampires and dinosaurs, before settling on a pirate theme inspired by the Pirates of the Caribbean films and The Goonies (1985). The game features a progression system that only unlocks cosmetic items as the development team wanted to encourage both casual and experienced players to play together. Rare departed from its reputation for secrecy during Sea of Thieves‘s development, inviting fans to test the game’s early builds.
Microsoft Studios released Sea of Thieves in March 2018 for Windows and Xbox One; it was one of the earliest first-party games released for Xbox Game Pass subscribers. Sea of Thieves received mixed reviews; critics praised the ship combat, multiplayer, visuals, and physics, but criticized the progression, gameplay, and lack of content. Rare envisioned Sea of Thieves as a “game as a service” and released numerous content updates after the initial release, which improved its overall reception. Sea of Thieves was a commercial success and became Microsoft’s most successful original intellectual property of the eighth generation, attracting more than 30 million players by June 2022. An enhanced version of the game was released for the Xbox Series X/S in November 2020.
Sea of Thieves is a first-person perspective action-adventure. At the beginning of the game, the player selects their procedurally generated player avatar. The game is set in a shared world, which means groups of players will encounter each other throughout their adventures. Solo and duo players sail around in a nimble sloop while players playing in a group control a larger three-person brigantine or a four-person galleon cooperatively by assuming different roles; such as steering the ship, manning the cannons, navigating, boarding enemy ships, and scouting from the crow’s nest. Players can save the loadout of the ship, customize the ship’s hull, figurehead, sails and captain’s quarters, as well as name their ship. Occasionally players may encounter hostile players who may attack them with cannonballs or board their ship. If areas under the deck take damage, water will flow in and cause the ship to gradually sink. Players need to patch up the holes with planks of wood and bail out water using buckets. Alliances can be established with other parties of players. They will receive gold bonuses when a group in the same alliance sells any form of treasure. Forming an alliance does not prevent players from attacking each other. If the player dies, they are sent to a ghost ship known as the Ferry of the Damned where they wait until they can respawn. A competitive multiplayer mode named “Arena” was introduced in the Anniversary update; it allows up to six teams of players to compete against each other by gathering silver in smaller maps. Due to low player participation, this game mode was subsequently removed in a later update.
Players can complete voyages offered by the game’s three main trading companies: Gold Hoarders, Order of Souls, and the Merchant Alliance. In the quests offered by Gold Hoarders, players are given a treasure map or a riddle to locate a treasure chest. The voyages offered by the Order of Souls are combat challenges, in which players travel to islands specified by the quest to defeat waves of skeletons. The Merchant Alliance’s missions demand players to deliver animals or cargo to certain vendors within a limited time. Three smaller factions also exist. Two of them, the Hunter’s Call and the Reaper’s Bones, do not offer quests. The Hunter’s Call will reward players who bring them cooked fish and meat, particularly from rarer types of fish. The Reaper’s Bones will pay for all kinds of treasures, and players can also give them special cursed treasures or emissary flags stolen from other ships. When players collect a treasure, they need to deliver them to the representatives of the quest-giving faction, though the one holding the chest are defenseless and may have it be taken by other players. Selling the treasure earns players gold, which can be spent on buying cosmetic items. Pets, emotes and further cosmetic items can also be purchased using real-world currency by accessing the Pirate Emporium store. Doubloons, earned through completing commendations from the Bilge Rats, the fourth trading company that distributes quests, challenges, and cosmetics added to the game via post-launch updates, can be traded for cosmetics, gold, or reputation to the other factions. The Anniversary update added Tall Tales, which are a series of structured narrative missions. Selling treasures to any of the three main trading companies, as well as Reaper’s Bones or Athena’s Fortune, earns the player reputation points, which unlock more complicated quests from each faction and additional purchasable cosmetics. When players reach rank 50 with any three of the 6 trading companies, they will earn the title of “pirate legend”, which grants players new cosmetic items and access to a pirate hideout, the Tavern of Legends, as well as a special trading company called Athena’s Fortune.
Players can freely explore the game’s open world on their own or with other players. When exploring islands players can find various resources: food like bananas, coconuts, and mangos, which restore their health, as well as wood planks, firebombs, blunderbombs, and cannonballs. Rowboats can be used to carry cargo while avoiding potential hazards. There are four weapons players can choose from, which are cutlasses, pistols, blunderbusses, and sniper rifles that can be used to defeat hostile enemies. When players are sailing on the ocean, they may sometimes face adverse weather conditions such as thunderstorms, or encounter shipwrecks, messages in bottles, barrels, skeleton ships, ghost fleets,or two monsters: the megalodon and the kraken. Skull-shaped clouds indicate the locations of Skeleton Forts, which are raids that can be completed by players in the same server. Players can interact with each other using emotes and by speaking via an in game text and voice system. They can also play musical instruments together and drink at taverns. The Anniversary update allows players to engage in leisure activities like fishing, hunting, and cooking.
Sea of Thieves offers the essential pirate experience, from sailing and fighting to exploring and looting – everything you need to live the pirate life and become a legend in your own right. With no set roles, you have complete freedom to approach the world, and other players, however you choose.
Whether you’re voyaging as a group or sailing solo, you’re bound to encounter other crews in this shared world adventure – but will they be friends or foes, and how will you respond?
A Vast Open World
Explore a vast open world filled with unspoiled islands and underwater kingdoms. Take on quests to hunt for lost loot, forge a reputation with the Trading Companies and battle foes from Phantoms and Ocean Crawlers to Megalodons and the mighty Kraken. Try your hand at fishing, make maps to your own buried treasure or choose from hundreds of other optional goals and side-quests!
Sea of Thieves: A Pirate’s Life
Play the Tall Tales to experience Sea of Thieves’ unique narrative-driven campaigns, and join forces with Captain Jack Sparrow in Sea of Thieves: A Pirate’s Life, an acclaimed original story that brings Disney’s Pirates of the Caribbean sailing into Sea of Thieves. These immersive and cinematic quests provide around 30 hours of the ultimate pirate adventure.
A Game That’s Always Growing
With each Season bringing in new game features every three months alongside regular in-game Events and new narrative Adventures, Sea of Thieves is a service-based game that’s still growing and evolving. Check back regularly to see what free content has been newly added, and see how far you can climb through each Season’s 100 levels of Renown to earn special rewards.
On your journey to become a Pirate Legend you’ll amass loot, build a reputation and define a unique personal style with your hard-earned rewards. Adventurer. Explorer. Conqueror. What will your legend be?
Sea of Thieves was developed by the UK-based developer Rare. Almost all of Rare’s 200 staff members worked on the game. The team began conceptualizing the game in 2014 and wanted to create a title where players can create stories together. The team took five months to create the game’s playable prototype named Athena using the Unity game engine. After playing the prototype, Microsoft’s executives including Phil Spencer and Kudo Tsunoda agreed to green-light the game’s development. Rare employees also provided the voice for all of the non-playable characters. Sea of Thieves marked Rare’s shift from using its own proprietary engine to using Unreal Engine 4.
Rare was often considered to be a secretive studio. Since Sea of Thieves is a multiplayer-focused game, the studio adopted a more transparent approach to the game’s development to ensure that the game’s content would resonate with players. The team allowed fans to take part in the game’s development by joining the Insider’s Program, which granted players access to an early build of the game. The program allowed Rare to experiment with different features while collecting players’ feedback. The participants could also discuss with the developers in a private forum. More than 30,000 players joined the program. Through the program, Rare learned more about how players interact with each other and used the information to help the team make gameplay decisions; for instance, the team decided to include solo play after many players from the Insider’s Program requested it.
Sea of Thieves was announced during Microsoft’s press conference at E3 2015, with Duncan describing the game as the “most ambitious project” from Rare. Initially set to be released in 2017, the game was delayed to early 2018 to allow additional development time. Microsoft marketed the game extensively. Players who pre-ordered the game received the Black Dog Pack, which included exclusive cosmetic content and access to a closed beta. Players could also purchase a separate Sea of Thieves-themed Xbox wireless controller, and anyone who purchased the Xbox One X console from 18 to 24 March would receive a free digital copy of the game. Microsoft’s Australian branch partnered with music band Captain Hellfire & The Wretched Brethren for a two-day event in which the pirate band sang different sea shanties requested by players. The program was broadcast via Facebook, Mixer, and Twitch from 24 to 25 March 2018. Microsoft also launched “The Quest”, an alternate reality game where players needed to solve different riddles. The winners would receive one of four golden bananas (each valued at £20,000) as rewards. Rare also hosted a competition which tasked fans to create achievements for the game. Several stress tests and betas were released ahead of the game’s official launch on 17 March. At launch, many players reported that they could not log into the game. Duncan said that Rare underestimated the server capacity as the number of people logging in to play the game during the launch period was unexpectedly high. Various fixes have been released to improve the game’s online infrastructure. Sea of Thieves was released on Steam on June 3, 2020. The game reached the “global top sellers” list in the same week.
In addition to being a retail release, Sea of Thieves is an Xbox Play Anywhere title and the game was made available for Xbox Game Pass subscribers at launch. However, crossplay between PC and Xbox One players was made optional in February 2019 to ensure that all players feel that “they have a level playing field”. On PC, the game was initially only available through Xbox Game Pass and Microsoft Store before Microsoft announced a release for Steam in April 2020. Players began to set rules, develop their own sets of challenges, and host their own events. To further encourage these players, Rare announced plans to incorporate private servers into the game.
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