I'm officially resolved to return to Sea Of Thieves's world of online piratical nonsense thanks to today's new treasure-trove of content. The Shrouded Spoils update for once isn't focused on a single time-limited quest or global event, but rather fleshing out its existing systems. Fog threatens ships along jagged coastlines and more skeleton ships roam in more shapes and sizes, occasionally on their own skellington adventures. More Megalodon varieties threaten ships everywhere and the Kraken has been beefed up too, for starters. Check the update page here, and the trailer below.
It's good to see that so much of the stuff in this update is PvE or co-op focused. Skeleton skips were a great addition, giving players a chance to tussle with other vessels without the social stress of butting heads with other humans. Seeing them in more configurations is great, and having more possible sea-monster encounters is just icing on the cake. Considering that the game was almost entirely competitive at launch, this feels like a significant course-correction. Not that PvP is forgotten - they're launching a structured competitive mode, The Arena, early next year too.
When Sea Of Thieves first launched, Alec - our proud pirate captain - was torn on it in his review. It had good bones on it, and some excellent concepts, but it mostly felt like a lot of empty water, expecting players to come up with interesting things to do to fill the void - four major updates later and that no longer holds true. Given that the game is still part of the Xbox Game Pass subscription (which I got a nice Black Friday deal on) even on PC, I'm happy to dip my toes in occasionally. Given all the skellingtons in this update, I might properly take the plunge at last. Ahoy!
The Shrouded Spoils update is live now, and you can see the full update notes here. Sea Of Thieves sadly remains exclusive to Windows 10 where it goes for £50 on the Windows Store, or (far more palatably) as part of the increasingly beefy Xbox Game Pass subscription.