I played Sea of Thieves at E3 2017 and really enjoyed my time. What was so clear was that Rare had spent the last year adding tons of new stuff to the game. What was a bare bones pirate adventure had become a real platform for players to interact with each other and the world. What I hadn’t realized was that I and my fellow players were crafting our own stories, and according to Rare’s Ted Timmins that is entirely the point.
I asked Ted if the game was more linear than it might appear, if players would be following a story or if they were just placed in this pirate themed world and left to their own devices. “It’s a mix of both,” explained Timmins.” There’s the A-to-B, which is the voyage, where we go ‘hey here’s three voyages’ which is the riddle map, or you could have done some separate treasure maps,” speaking of the three objectives in the Sea of Thieves demo at E3 2017.
“But then on the way from A to B you encounter a ship wreck, other crews, barrels aplenty, sharks, islands that you see that look like they have treasure on them. Like you might see a treasure chest on the beach. We want to give you the ingredients for you to create your own story. I think where I’m particularly excited is seeing how players take A plus B and it makes a C. Something we didn’t even expect to happen.”
This is a big part of the Sea of Thieves experience as I’ve come to understand it. The game is very much an open experience, but together we crafted a story of our own. We each now have the story of how I died jumping off a cliff into shallow water, or how we found a chest that randomly drops water into our boat, and how we struggled to keep us from sinking.
Sea of Thieves hits Xbox One and Windows 10 in early 2018.