How to get Started in Sea of Thieves - How to Begin Your First Voyage - Step by Step Guide to Setting Sail, Controls Explained

How to get Started in Sea of Thieves - How to Begin Your First Voyage - Step by Step Guide to Setting Sail, Controls Explained

Here's our complete guide to the opening stages of Sea of Thieves, including how to select your own pirate, and how to embark on a voyage with any of the Merchant Alliance, Order of Souls, or Gold Hoarders factions.

Sea of Thieves is now out in the wilds, and you can take to the ocean in your very own pirate ship to explore the high seas, but it isn't the easiest of games to get started with, especially without a tutorial. In this Sea of Thieves guide we'll walk you through how to get started, including how to start your first quest, which the game calls voyages. Read on for how to get your first voyage in Sea of Thieves, plus how to get there on your boat. We'll also give a rundown of the Sea of Thieves controls, including how to use a weapon, and what do with chests.

The first big DLC content for Sea of Thieves has finally released, and there's lots to conquer in the Hungering Deep update. Make sure to head over to our full Sea of Thieves Hungering Deep guide, where we'll be walking you through all the brand new cosmetic items you can unlock for your ship and pirate character right now.

Sea of Thieves Character Creator

When you first boot up Sea of Thieves, you’ll be taken to the ‘infinite pirate generator’, which churns out a host of pirates for you to select. This is the character creator of the game, and although you can’t actually build you own pirate from scratch, you can refresh the pirates in front of you however many times you want, until you eventually settle on a pirate that you like the look of.

Keep in mind that you’ll be adventuring around with this pirate for potentially hundreds of hours, so it’s important that you settle on a pirate that you like the look of, before you kick off your voyage Although you can outfit your pirate with different clothing like eyepatches, shirts, coats, and trousers further down the line, the nicer gear in Sea of Thieves takes more time and gold to unlock.

How to get Your First Voyage in Sea of Thieves

No matter what choice you make over how to start Sea of Thieves (the solo, small ship called the sloop is good while you're learning), you'll begin in a tavern. There are some items you can collect from barrels like bananas which are used to restore your health, but to get anywhere you're going to want to leave and find any of the three merchant vendors that are situated nearby.

You can always find the three factions in the buildings pictured just below, for example the Gold Hoarders faction can always be found in the small tend, while the Order of Souls will always be found in a creepy looking shack.

Finally, you can find the Merchant Alliance faction further out on the pier towards your ship. The Merchant Alliance, Order of Souls, and Gold Hoarders form the three factions in Sea of Thieves, and you can pick up a total of three voyages (quests) at one time from any of them.

To get started on your very first voyage in Sea of Thieves, select a combination of three voyages from any of the three factions, all of which will be free of charge since they're considered Starter Voyages.

How to Find Your Destination in Sea of Thieves

With your voyage in hand, it's now time to set sail. Now head to your boat, found near the shoreline close to all the merchant huts/tents. If you're playing with a large boat it will be impossible to miss, but the smaller one is still found in the same area.

On the lower deck of your boat you'll find a table that contains all available voyages. Choose 'Propose Voyage' and select the voyage of your choice - this will be any of the three voyages that you picked up from the Gold Hoarders, Order of Souls, and Merchant Alliance vendors.

Now 'Vote for Voyage' to activate the quest. If you're playing with others you'll need to get a team consensus. If you're playing alone the quest/voyage will begin immediately.

When the voyage is activated you'll unlock a map. To view the map hold down RB (on an Xbox One/360 controller) and then select the map icon with the right stick. With the map held, hold RT.

This Sea of Thieves Voyage Map will be different each time, but you'll be able to find it on the map table.

Even with a map showing you the location of your chosen voyage, there's still the small matter of actually getting there. Your map will show you a location, which you need to find on the large map table that's found on your ship's lower deck.

Looks like the direction to the destination is approximately south east.

Find the location on the large map table to work out what direction you need to sail in for your boat's current location.

How to Sail in Sea of Thieves

Back on the upper deck, raise the boat's anchor, unfurl the sails (tethered to the side of the boat) and then operate the wheel. Point your ship in the direction you need to sail by using the compass to the side of the wheel.

Turn the wheel to the desired compass direction and you're set on the right path.

Set off and consult the map table to make sure you're going in the right direction. The seas are rough, so you'll have to correct your course numerous times on the way to your destination.

What do you do With Chests in Sea of Thieves?

The voyages you take in Sea of Thieves will usually end with you picking up a chest. Some voyages even have multiple parts to them (some with clues to locations, others with pictures), and you can get a chest for each part. But what do you do with them when you have them?

The first thing to do with a chest is to take it to your boat. Once you've got all the chests onboard, head to your closest outpost. Once you've reached your destination, take each chest one by one and sell them to the Gold Hoarder shopkeeeper. You'll get a whole bunch of gold for each and be able to purchase new voyages!

Be careful if you come across other boats while out at sea. Some players are friendly, but others will board you and take your treasure. If you're playing solo this is especially dangerous, although we should note that the small sloop is actually capable of outrunning the larger galleon ship.

Sea of Thieves Controls - How to use a Weapon

When you start playing Sea of Thieves it's not immediately obvious how to do anything that isn't given an on-screen tool-tip. We've got the full controls for you in the image just below.

A key control to note is pressing 'Y' to equip and cycle through weapons. Don't be like me and try to batter a skeleton with a plank of wood. It won't end well.

It's important to try and conserve your ammo in Sea of Thieves, especially when you're fighting skeletons or other players away from your ship. While you can head to the Ammo Chest to refill your ranged ammo while you're on your pirate ship, if you run out of ammo while on land you're out of ammunition for good.

If you need any further info on Sea of Thieves, from how to take down the Kraken to how to customize your pirate ship, check out our complete guides list just below:

Make sure to keep an eye on our Sea of Thieves guides, as we'll be updating all our pages to reflect any changes Rare makes to the pirate game, whether it's huge DLC expansions, or simple tweaks to the way the game plays.

Tom Orry

Managing Editor

Tom started life on a circus in Australia before his family moved to the UK. His love of gaming started soon after, which essentially meant he bought every video game magazine available and worked numerous part-time jobs as a child in order to afford costly N64 games. He created UK site, of which he was the Editor for over a decade. He now doesn't like circuses.

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