News

Rare invited press to play the Anniversary Update [roundup]

Links to all the best reading from this weeks Anniversary Update coverage. Roundups
Last week Rare hosted press for a preview look at the Anniversary Update – the highly anticipated free update for Sea of Thieves coming April 30, 2019. The embargo lifted earlier today, so following is a round-up of all the press so far. There’s a huge amount of info nestled in these pieces, so we’ll have an ultra-detailed summary of everything covered in these press pieces a little later in the week. 🚨 Be aware that there are spoilers in these previews. If you want to go into the update fresh-faced and wide-eyed, you may want to turn back now. 🚨…

The Arena will be playable at TwitchCon

Not an Insider? Not a problem. News
Of all the additions coming to the Anniversary Update, The Arena is the one we’ve known about the longest. However, we’ve received very little new information since the new game mode was announced at XO18. But it looks like that’s about to change. We know that media will be visiting Rare this week to play The Anniversary update – and we expect to see write-ups about those visits in mid-April. Additionally, the Sea of Thieves dev team will be streaming The Arena on April 10th, where the team will “share more details, insights and glimpses from behind the scenes”. Following…

We’ll have to wait a little longer for Pets

They’re not quite ready for prime time. News
Eagle eyed observers would have noticed that Pets were conspicuously absent from the Anniversary Update trailer on Wednesday. At the time, I postulated that, since the mega update was a free update, pets (which will cost real money) were intentionally omitted to avoid confusion. Nope. Executive Producer, Joe Neate, confirmed on Twitter that pets aren’t quite where Rare would like them to be, so they’re taking the time to ensure they get it right. We’re not quite happy with where Pets are at yet. Been testing them with Insiders, taken feedback, had internal reviews, and not confident they’d meet our…

Sea of Thieves announces major “Anniversary Update”

The update will arrive on April 30th. News
The team from Sea of Thieves announced the details of their “mega update” today – now officially called the Anniversary Update. As well as The Arena (most of the details of which we’ve know since it was announced) the video, announcement and promo page give us some more details about things we know, and tip us off to some new things. Tall Tales – Shores of Gold introduces a new epic storyline to the world of Sea of Thieves, delving deeper into the lore of our favourite pirate paradise. Follow a series of narrative adventures surrounding existing and all-new characters, taking you…

Top 10 Sh*t Ideas from the development of Sea of Thieves

Press X to talk to Melto. Roundups
In the midst of his ongoing series of tweets covering the development of Sea of Thieves (full roundup here), Rare designer Gregg Mayles also starting a top ten list of sh*t ideas the team came up with that ultimately didn’t make it to the game. Sometimes you have to fully test an idea in context to get a real handle on how good/fun/worthwhile it is – so don’t view these too harshly. Hindsight is 20/20, after all. 1.  Magic Monkey’s Wonder Window Some ideas we tried were hilariously bad. Setting sail with #1 is ‘Magic Monkey’s Wonder Window’, which allowed…

The Sea of Thieves Insider Program is now live

RIP, Pioneers. News
After a slight delay, the Sea of Thieves Insider Program is now live! (Note: some users may have issues registering or getting the Insider build for the next day or so. Be patient, it’s not going anywhere.) Previously group of players with access to pre-release test builds of the game was known as Pioneers. This was a relatively small, closed group, made up of players originally from the early Alpha testing phases. With the Mega Update on the horizon, which will bring a huge amount of substantial changes to the game, along with the fact that some previous updates had…

A Gold+Rep boost weekend is on the way (updated)

Gold and Glory Weekend: March 15th-18th! Tidbits
Updated: 14 March 2019 The Gold and Glory weekend has now been announced and the countdown is live on the Sea of Thieves site. Pirates who sell loot to any trading company during the event will receive a “huge boost in gold and reputation rewards”. Orignal post: It seems as though some seaofthieves.com site code leaked out a little bit early. This image has popped up on Reddit, and shows a countdown for an upcoming event called “the Gold and Glory weekend”. With “Glory” probably referring to Trading Company Reputation, and “Gold” referring to… well, gold… we expect this to…

We figured out the ship cutouts!

And there’s prototype footage of the feature in action. Tidbits
🚨  Although this is sourced from public information, it may contain heavy spoilers about those cutouts, so if you’re precious about potentially being spoiled, turn back now.  🚨 Since the inclusion of the cut outs at the bow of the ships in the latest build of the game, observers have been trying to figure out what the might be for. Some figure they’re confirmation of fishing, or potentially for mortars, perhaps for swivel guns, or even for deck-mounted harpoons. Eagle eyed reader @PersonalC0ffee reached out to me via Twitter DM with some interesting images captured from early prototype Sea of Thieves gameplay footage….

Everything we know about the upcoming Mega Update

AKA the Anniversary Update! Roundups
Updated March 20th 2019: We now know that the upcoming “mega update” will officially be called the Anniversary Update, to be released on April 30th 2019. Watch the official Anniversary Update trailer and check out our trailer breakdown. Read up on the full Anniversary Update announcement. Original post, Feb 20th 2019: At Inside Xbox in February, Sea of Thieves executive producer, Joe Neate, confirmed that on March 20th, 2019 – the one year anniversary of the launch of the game – Rare will announce everything that’s coming in their next major update, referred to as the Mega Update! It’s been several…

What’s changed since you last played Sea of Thieves?

A very helpful summary of changes and additions to the game since launch. Roundups
(Updated 6 February 2019) If you took a break from Sea of Thieves, and you’ve been thinking about setting sail once again, but you’re wondering “what’s new?” … this is the place for you! A few notes: Although the world is now much more ‘alive’, the core gameplay loop of ‘completing voyages’ is largely unchanged. If you didn’t enjoy the basic premise of Sea of Thieves before, the additions since launch might not swing it for you. If you want to dip your toes back in without committing to a full retail purchase: Game Pass is cheap, my friend. However,…

Friends Play Free!

Update: The offer is live! News
Are you a lonely pirate? Do you long for a crewmate (or three) to join your piratical exploits? Fear no more, solitary swashbuckler! For one week only, you can invite up to three friends to set sail with you on the Sea of Thieves – completely free! Don’t miss Friends Play Free, running from February 6th–13th. Simply head over to our website and redeem your codes now! Whoops, it looks like someone at Rare briefly hit public instead of unlisted when uploading this video. In what was certainly supposed to be a reveal for Inside Xbox, it seems as though…

The Cross-Play Opt-Out “Controversy”

Groan. Update: now with actual stats. Opinion & Analysis
Updated: Feb 6, 2019 Now that Joe has appeared on Inside Xbox, and following on from Craigs tweet about “sharing stats soon”, we now know details about the PC/console player split, which allows us to better understand any impact that cross-play opt-out might have. During the show Joe confirmed that over the previous weekend, PC players made up 35% of players who set sail, with the remaining 65% being console players. This is significant because we can use those percentages to estimate how the cross-play and console-only pools might split, depending on how many consoles users actually do opt out…

The latest Pirate Times teases a new voyage type

Another reason to be a little bit mercenary. Tidbits
Pictured: another reason, if required, to be a little bit mercenary In the latest Pirate Times, the Sea Of Thieves community team has teased something new coming to the game. In a section titled “Tip-Top Tipple Treasures” we see a graphic of a new voyage type: a scroll adorned with a scorpion seal. From the article: The Pirate Times is informed that a tenacious but unknown rum runner has recently chosen to scatter their stash of illicit alcohol and loot around the Sea of Thieves! All three Trading Companies are interested in this haul, so Duke is working on tracking…

Developer Update (video)

Cross play controls are coming for console players. Dev Update Videos
In a dev update today that covered reporting and banning toxic behaviour, and some background on the thinking behind the the upcoming weapons balance (with a detailed breakdown of the changes coming in next week’s dev update), Executive Producer Joe Neate covered another topic that has been a long standing point of discussions among Sea of Thieves players: cross play. Joe has confirmed that, in the lead up to the public release of The Arena, console players will be able to opt out of cross-play in both Adventure mode and The Arena. Sea of Thieves is a cross play title, and…

Tales from the development of Sea of Thieves

Mermaids and emotion and post-it notes. Roundups
Just before the New Year, in what I can only imagine was a fairly obvious attempt to avoid family at the holidays, Rare game designer Gregg Mayles started looking through a collection of images and documents from the early days of Sea of Thieves development. …I’ve been looking back through the huge haul of documents and images I have got from the development of Sea Of Thieves. I’ll share a few and see if anyone is interested! His first tweet was an absolute cracker! Sea Of Thieves started off life as a chat with @SimonSorcerer about ‘deep emotional player engagement’…