So we all have a pretty good idea of just what one does while in the Sea of Thieves world – digging up treasure, sailing the open main, general swashbuckling…but just what is the point or reward for doing all of that? A new video from one of the devs provides a bit more context about how Sea of Thieves character progression is going to work in-game.
Character progression operates similarly to reputation building in many other MMOs. Sea of Thieves has three different factions players can work with: the Gold Hoarders, whose motivations should be reasonably obvious; the Merchant Alliance, whose goal should also be apparent; and the Order of Souls, who have the unique goal of wanting control of the world’s magic.
Not only will working with each faction bring unique items and titles for players to flaunt, but each group also represents a playstyle. Gold Hoarder voyages (AKA quests) have players seeking treasure, either by following maps or riddle quests. Merchant Alliance voyages task players with gathering a list of items and then shipping them to a destination on time. Order of Souls voyages are more combat-focused, tasking players with taking out named skeletal captains and bringing back their skulls.
Voyages aren’t just a UI element in Sea of Thieves, but actual physical objects that members of a crew can carry and bring to a literal in-game table in order for everyone to decide which voyage to undertake. Naturally, progressing through the reputation ranks with your chosen faction will provide more rewarding and more challenging voyages to take on.
While items are a part of character building in the world, all of them – from clothing to weapons – are purely cosmetic and provide no stat bonuses of any kind. The intent of this design is to ensure that players are able to play together at any point and won’t face overpowered threats among themselves, leaving a player’s skill with arms as the deciding factor in combat.
You can take in the full character progression breakdown in the video below.
Making progression tied entirely to the types of adventures you take on and keeping rewards fully cosmetic instead of stats-based is probably the best way Sea of Thieves could go with regard to character progression. While simply enjoying the open aspect of voyaging can be enough, we appreciate that some people want to meet a goal and we feel that this progression system hits those notes without leaving new players twisting in the wind. Well played, Rare Ltd.