October 27, 2017

PAX Aus - Hands on with Sea of Thieves

When Xbox asked if I wanted to play Sea of Thieves again, I said yes, however when they asked if I wanted to play it on a ship and below deck, I replied, Ay ay Captain. PAX Australia marks the Aussie debut for the latest from Rare and it is shaping up to have great sea legs.

The build that I played was me and three fellow buccaneers, setting sail for adventure, but also against two other teams of 4, so 12 in total were all setting out to find the treasure and as you can imagine it was a madhouse. After leaving the tavern and making my way to the ship, my crew mates were already hard at work preparing to set sail, I however was still attempting to shake off the effects of my rum and grog fuelled bender. After a while though, we were underway and as one might expect from a group of scallywags, we had no idea what anyone was doing, or even ourselves at a point.

When you are behind the wheel of the ship, you can’t see where you are going, if the sails are down, as they block your view completely, though you can see to the sides and this highlights the communication factor of the game. To my right, in the real world, one of the other players had their map up and I was using that to gauge the direction that I needed to steer the ship in, in order to reach out destination. Once we were on course, it was pointed out to me, that the island we were heading towards was not the one we needed to find, so a quick course correction later and we were all set to shave the side of the island and press on, if only it was that easy.

Skeletons atop that island had decided we had come to close and started to unleash cannon fire upon us and while the first few shots had missed, one struck true. Now at this point, the rest of the crew had lowered the sails in an attempt to catch as much wind as we could, in order to avoid getting shot and while it worked for a while, they did manage to land a hit. Once the ship took a hit, I was thrown from it, quite a distance in fact and by the time I managed to swim to the water’s surface, I had no chance of catching my ship, which was still going forward, just with no one at the helm.  So, I did the only thing that I could do, I made for land, yes the land that was covered in skeletons and who knows what else.

Once land was discovered, I brought out my musket and prepared myself for the fight I knew was coming, however I ended up lost. As the game provides very little in terms of on screen navigation, you need to ensure that you are pointed in the right direction yourself, so out came the trusty compass and after checking that and the local map, I could head to the outlook and into battle. The skeletons that were there, did not prove to be difficult to fight, a close shot of the musket put the first one down, the second I used my blade upon and he broke apart as well, but I relaxed too soon, as another had clawed his way from the ground and sought to claim a victory for the skeletons, he was denied.

At this time, I looked to my crew mates were still on the ship and sadly, they had encountered more enemies, so after taking more cannon fire, they were taking on water faster than they could remove it, so the ship went down. With that, our time was at an end, me on an island, alone, except for the skeletons and my crewmates floating around in the open ocean.

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