I know what you’re thinking.
“Wow Chani, you must really love Sea of Thieves to write about it AGAIN?”
Yes, it’s true, both Sam and I have previously written about Sea of Thieves and how much we love the game. With a game that is continually adding content and hosting limited time events, I thought one final SoT piece for the year was fitting.
A Quick Summary:
To sum up the essence of what both our previous posts cover, I’ve made this handy little list.
- The game is fun with friends / the right group of people
- Most of the internet disagree claiming a lack of story progression (have you even played?)
- Since Hungering Deep (May 2018) there have been several limited time events making up for the aforementioned lack of progression
What’s Been Added (So Far)
To date, these are all the named DLC patches that have been added to the game;
- The Hungering Deep
- Cursed Sails
- Forsaken Shores
- Festival of the Damned
- Shrouded Spoils – The latest update which has to be my favourite so far!
The great thing about Sea of Thieves is that firstly, all the DLC is free. Secondly, once the timed event or adventure has come to an end, the additions to the game still remain and permanently become a part of the world.
Then what’s the point of the limited time event?
For those 2 or 3 weeks that the event is live, everyone wants to participate and complete the new adventure. Sea of Thieves has grown a lovely community online that loves working together when required (sometimes you need to team up with another crew or form an alliance). With Hungering Deep, there was an actual scripted adventure that disappeared after the conclusion of the event. Sure the Meg will spawn whenever you’re sailing for long distances over deep-sea areas, but it’ll never be the same as having to spawn the Meg for the first time with the drum and 4 friends.
However, the biggest drawcard to completing the events during the allocated time is the limited time cosmetics you either earn or purchase during that time. Because I defeated the Megladon as part of Merrick’s mission, I have the Hungering Deep skin for my drum and loudspeaker. Anyone who didn’t do Merrick’s quest will never be able to unlock or purchase that specific cosmetic (since there is no customisation or upgrade system, cosmetics are the only real thing in SoT that can make you stand out from the others apart from titles/levels).
Introduction of the Bilge Rat Adventures
During Hungering Deep, we’re introduced to Duke, the Bilge Rat who likes hanging out in the pub. For Hungering Deep, he just gave you a nudge in the right direction to go find Merrick on Sharkbait Cove. Since then, the Bilge Rats play a much bigger role in Sea of Thieves.
Bilge Rats live outside the rules, crave adventure and are always looking to try something new (according to Duke at least). In the context of the game and player experience, however, they add another facet to the levelling and “progression”. For each commendation under the Bilge Rat section, you will earn Doubloons, the currency only used by Duke/Bilge Rats. These can be used to buy the limited time cosmetics (encouraging you to complete the current event as fast as possible before the items disappear forever), gold to put towards your purchases from the other traders, and letters of recommendation. These letters let you “buy a level” towards your overall progression towards Pirate Legend status.
(Two of the three letters are locked since I have already reached level cap for Gold Hoarders and Order of the Souls)
These adventures allow you to take a break from the usual Gold/Souls/Merchant grind which can get boring after a while (especially if you’ve gotten good at the game.) I mentioned the named DLC above, but there are also unnamed DLC patches that fall under the Bilge Rat adventure umbrella that add to the limited time schedule. Usually, the unnamed DLC or events take place between the “bigger” named DLCs.
- Skeleton Thrones
- Gunpowder Skeletons
- The Skunken Curse
So what has actually changed?
If you haven’t played Sea of Thieves since the launch, there are several things that have been added or changed.
There’s an entirely new section of the map (The Devils Roar, from Forsaken Shores) that is aimed at advanced players. You’re continually dealing with earthquakes, guisers shooting you into the air and avoiding volcanic eruptions that will A. Kill you instantly and B. Sink your ship almost instantly. There are a bunch of new PVE elements that have been added to the game as well. Big additions like the Megalodon (giant shark from Hungering Deep), enemy skeleton ships crewed by, you guessed it, skeletons (from cursed sails). But there are also smaller additions/changes to the existing PVE elements as well, such as skeletons who will spawn with gunpowder kegs (gunpowder skeletons) and skeletons spawning with various types of guns rather than just the blunderbuss.
A more “advanced” or “challenging” version of the Merchant Alliance voyages are now available that requires you to collect and deliver cargo all around the map. You get higher amounts of gold if the items are delivered in pristine condition – if they are damaged, their quality and therefore gold value, depreciate. The new cargo includes plants that you need to keep watered otherwise they dry out / die. Cloth you cannot get wet, and rum bottles you cannot crack or break. This means you cannot jump into the water with the cloth, nor can you sprint, jump or fall while carrying rum bottles.
Game mechanics that have been changed or added
Barrel mechanics have been updated so that barrels on islands contain more than one type of item. You can even find cursed cannonballs that apply effects to enemy players’ ships and crew when the ship gets hit with a specific type of cannonball (making all players drunk, locking the wheel, raising the sails etc). Not to mention the new 3 player “Brigantine” ship that has 2 decks, 2 masts and 4 cannons (2 on each side) which was also added in Cursed Sails.
There are tons of other updates, changes, and lots more cosmetics to be unlocked as well, but the above mentioned were some of the bigger additions I wanted to point out.
Shrouded Spoils and why I’m excited to play it
The reason I love this new update as much as I do is not only the addition of the fog, but it is giving longtime players a reason to tackle older challenges again. Fighting the Kraken for the first and second time is exciting, but any time after that it is more of an inconvenience because it’s taking up time you could be spending digging up treasure. With this latest update, defeating environmental hazards like the Kraken, Megladon and the Skeleton Ships drops loot in the water (which makes fighting / engaging with them more “worth it”).
Why should you give SoT another go?
Do I think all of these changes and additions are enough to make you fall in love with the game you stopped enjoying after a few weeks of play? Probably not. But I do think you will get another few weeks worth of enjoying the new content. Taking on the meg or new skeleton ships for the first time is always fun, and you’ll want to perfect your strategies if you fail. I personally love this game and play it whenever I get the chance to crew up with my friends since solo SoTing is still not the greatest.
That’s the Sea of Thieves update in a nutshell and why I think you need to give it another chance, even if just to try out all the new things just once. There are those of us still playing and on that grind towards Pirate Legend. So go out there, find some gold, kill some skeletons and hope you don’t get hit by a molten rock from a nearby volcano.