Sea Of Thieves’ latest alpha makes piracy more sociable

Sea of Thieves

Living in the tense geopolitical hellscape that is Earth 2017, it’s easy to forget the childlike thrill of adventure inherent in swashbuckling with a crew of buddies across the virtual seas. It’s been a while since we covered Sea of Thieves, Rare’s game of cooperative piracy, but it looks like development is chugging along nicely and, as far as we know, on track for a release early next year.

Detailed in a rather comprehensive video after the jump, Rare lay out (in piratical form) a list of oddly low-key yet vital features coming to the next alpha build of the game, available to anyone in their Insider Programme.

Text chat, scuttling, a basic criminal punishment system (no loyalty amongst thieves, after all) and a new class of smaller, solo-friendly ship are the order of the day. My gut feeling tells me that Sea of Thieves is ideally played with a gang of close friends, rather than a random crew online, but this next version will at least allow the less sociable (or less microphone-equipped) pirates to enjoy themselves. The smaller ship type seems ideal for playing as a duo, as well.

I wonder why many of these features – basic interpersonal interactions for a cooperative online game – are coming so late into development, just a few months from the launch date. But at least they’re presented in an amusing fashion. I especially like the option to vote unruly players into the brig, a feature I can’t help but think will be used to orchestrate many a scurrilous mutiny. A painful sting if you’re with a crew of strangers, but potentially hilarious amongst friends.

You can sign up for the Sea of Thieves alpha on the official site here, although whether you’ll be picked is another matter. The game is set for release sometime in early 2018, although if Microsoft stick to their guns, it may well remain a Windows 10 exclusive.


  1. Seafoam says:

    I think the Brig will make teaming up with randoms a living hell. Someone is micspamming and you ask them kindly to stop, but because your other teammates are 3 Russian kids in a group they throw you in the brig and keep you there and micspam you until you disconnect.

    • Artist says:

      Spot the racist zealot in the post above. Sad.

      • LessThanNothing says:

        Or an accurate description of the game right now…

      • Seafoam says:

        Not racist, it seems like you haven’t played a lot of games in EU servers? It’s just the reality of things from time to time.

      • AlishaScott says:

        I just got paid $6784 working off my laptop this month. And if you think that’s cool, my divorced friend has twin toddlers and made over $9k her first month. It feels so good making so much money when other people have to work for so much less. This is what I do… Click Here And Start Work

      • presence06 says:

        spot the keyboard warrior in the post above. sad.

  2. BathsaltxAddictx says:

    Is it really ONLY a windows 10 game? So if I have windows 8.1 it really won’t work? Can someone verify this because I have a hard time believing thats possible.

    • Ghostwise says:

      Windows 10-exclusive games are absolutely a thing. And they often have to be bought in an appalling MS storefront.

    • April March says:

      If you define ‘won’t work’ as ‘Microsoft won’t let it run on your version of Windows’, then yes, it won’t work. To my knowledge Microsoft isn’t even pretending there are technical reasons.

      • JoeD2nd says:

        Don’t act like the developers/publishers aren’t in on it. There are plenty of games made that can run on different versions of Windows.

        • cpt_freakout says:

          Rare is owned by Microsoft, so yeah, not a lot of choice there.

    • panzerkampfwagen says:

      A better question is who seriously runs Win 8.1 when 10 was a free upgrade for years. This game probably won’t run on Windows ME either.