Sea of Thieves’ PvP Emphasis and Recent Changes Didn’t Go Down Too Well

Sea of Thieves

Sea of Thieves needs no introduction, for a wide range of different reasons. Myself, I cant get enough of it. I play it practically each and every week without fail. Now, I totally appreciate that many, myself included, couldn’t overlook the game’s launch state and its lack of content, but since then, developer Rare has been on the ball. We’ve enjoyed two large content drops and a healthy serving of (mostly) interesting bi-weekly events up to now. By and large, this is a fairly different experience in comparison to its launch version.

Though with that being said, change isn’t always good. That, more than ever, goes to the game’s most recent update; The Cursed Crews. The Cursed Crews follows hot on the heels of Sea of Thieves’ second largest content drop, Cursed Sails. This content drop saw the implementation of AI skeleton ships and a short but sweet campaign to soak up. Outside of that, the game received its first new ship since launch, some smaller additional content, the ability to crew-up with others, and a range of quality of life improvements across the board.

From what I could tell, everyone was having an absolute blast – and then Cursed Crews came along. Now to be fair to Rare, Cursed Crews isn’t really a massive side-step. Far from it, in fact, all it does is give players some more PvP tools as well as making some changes to how inventory management works. That, on top of a few new commendations for players to work towards. The biggest problem here is that many of these commendations are PvP-focused, rather than PvP-optional. Throw in the aforementioned crews, and we’ve a recipe for carnage.

Cursed Crews now allows players to don a specific flag that will highlight them on the world map – encouraging players to head on over to test out their might. That alone isn’t so bad, though one does wonder why there isn’t an SOS-like flag too. Nevertheless, it’s the commendations, grouped with that flag’s mechanics that’s the main issue here. Many are complaining that this one singular update has pushed Sea of Thieves into a state of player on player war, and after playing a few hours of the new content, I have to say that I kind of agree.

Again though, it’s the way that the commendations work rather than the core aspects of play. Many of the commendations require that you’re wearing the new flag when either completing voyages or firing the mystical new cannonballs. They also demand that you go out of your way to attack other crews as well as either skeletons, or skeleton ships. I fully understand where fan concern is coming from. Until now, attacking other ships or other players was a totally optional affair. Though under these new rules, its a necessity in order to complete the new missions.

Fans also haven’t taken kindly to the new management system, being that now in-game barrels are filled with variations of items, rather than one item-type per barrel. It sounds more accessible on paper, but due to the way that you need to filter and the move selection between menus, it’s actually made the who process all the more tedious and awkward. Hopefully Rare jumps on this feedback as swiftly as possible, because until changes are made, several players are putting up their sails and refusing to return to the game’s lush world.

Perhaps once this timed event has passed and the PvP-heavy commendations have rotated to something new, frustrations will be alleviated to some degree. Whatever the case, Rare has proven time and time again that they can adapt to feedback very swiftly and fluidly, so I have no doubt that that will be the case here. Let’s see what the Sea of Thieves has in store for us next, though until that time comes, Rare has some immediate damage control to sink into. What are your thoughts on the new content? Hit the comment section below to get in on the action.

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Written by
I've been playing games for as long as I can care to remember. Here at Xbox Tavern, I write news, reviews, previews and more. I'm a long time Final Fantasy fan, I can camp like you've never seen before in most FPS, and if I'm on a racing game, I tend to purposely trade paint. Feel free to add me - Gamertag: Kaloudz

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