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Sea of Thieves Release Date, Beta, Trailer, Gameplay, Xbox One X, Game Pass - Everything We Know

When does the Sea of Thieves Open Beta start? How do you get Sea of Thieves in Xbox Game Pass? Sea of Thieves release date, and more.

Guide by Hirun Cryer, Tom Orry, .

Sea of Thieves for Xbox One, Xbox One X and Windows 10 aims to combine online, co-operative gameplay with some swashbuckling pirate adventures, as you and your friends can take command of a single ship, and chart a course to wherever you please throughout the world.

We'll update this page with all the Sea of Thieves info as it's released, including the Sea of Thieves release date and pre-order info. For now, if you're playing the Sea of Thieves Beta and don't really know what to do, check out our guide to getting started in Sea of Thieves. Recently we got hands on with Sea of Thieves and came away with info on the Brig system, how Rare is handling DLC in Sea of Thieves, and 7 things you didn't know about Sea of Thieves.

Sea of Thieves Essential Information:

  • Release Date: March 20, 2018
  • Price: TBC
  • Platforms: Windows 10, Xbox One, Xbox One X
  • Developer: Rare
  • Publisher: Microsoft Studios
  • Genre: Multiplayer Pirate Adventure

Sea of Thieves Release Date

Microsoft announced that the Sea of Thieves release date is March 20, 2018. Sea of Thieves will release on Xbox One, Xbox One X, and Windows 10. Sea of Thieves is the first exclusive game from Microsoft Studios to launch on Xbox Game Pass the same day as it is released at retail. The game is included as part of the $9.99/£7.99 Game Pass monthly subscription.

Sea of Thieves Open Beta

An Open Beta for Sea of Thieves will run from Friday, March 9, and end on Sunday March 11 at 2 a.m. PST (10 a.m. BST). This beta is available to everyone.

New to the Open Beta are the Merchant Alliance and Skeleton Forts. This is in addition to the following activities that were already available in previous betas:

  • Hunting for buried treasure by following maps and solving riddles as part of voyages that span the Sea of Thieves
  • Sailing solo or joining a crew before heading out to adventure in a shared world where every sail on the horizon is a ship of other real players
  • Exploring the world and encountering danger on islands, under the ocean and out at sea with fearsome storms and mysterious shipwrecks
  • Engaging in epic ship battles with cannons blazing, or going head-to-head against other pirates with pistol primed and cutlass drawn

On Xbox One the Sea of Thieves Beta download size is 8.95GB, on Xbox One X it's 18.25GB, and on PC it's 18.98GB. Updates made to the game since the Scale Test are detailed below:

  • Xbox One X Optimisation - We've talked about it before and now it's finally here! Experience Sea of Thieves with 4k resolution and textures.
  • Start anew – If you played in the Closed Beta or any of the Scale Tests, you’ll find that your Pirate, Progress and Gold has been wiped.
  • Equipable Items - Players no longer start with an eye-patch, peg leg or hook in the Vanity Chest.

Sea of Thieves Progression System Explained

Back in December 2017, Sea of Thieves director Mike Chapman narrated the video just below on the official YouTube channel of the game, giving us a look at the progression system, as well as trading, pirate customisation options.

The talking points from the video are that you'll be able to customise basically every item of clothing on your pirate, including hooks, peg legs, beards, hairstyles, equipment, weapons, on top of your standing clothing items. You'll be able to find various different traders scattered throughout the world of Sea of Thieves, and they all reflect different play styles, for example the merchant's trading company have a goal of controlling trade routes on the seas, while the gold hoarders simply want to amass wealth.

With each trading faction, you'll be able to increase your reputation, unlocking rewards for your pirate character as you go. You can increase your reputation with a faction by undertaking Voyages, which are basically Sea of Thieves' version of quests. Any character that you recruit onto your pirate ship will present new Voyage opportunities to you, so you'll have to constantly be looking to add more members to your ranks.

Sea of Thieves E3 2017 Gameplay Demo

E3 2017 wasn't the first time that we’ve seen Sea of Thieves, but it did give us the best look at the game so far - plus is had a decent voice over instead of a horrible fake 'gamer' conversation. You can watch that presentation directly below this very sentence!

At the very beginning of the gameplay demo shown at Microsoft’s E3 2017 presentation, three pirates in total from a single ship went diving, hoping to uncover some treasure in the wreckage of a ship. These wrecks can apparently be found all over the world of Sea of Thieves, and you’ll have to gamble when venturing down their.

The gamble comes in the form of any dangers you might encounter while underwater. For example, at the end of this section of the gameplay demo, all three players were confronted with several sharks, causing them to drop their recovered loot and flee back to the safety of their ship.

However, they did manage to recover a treasure chest from the wreckage of the ship which, when opened, revealed a riddle that had to be solved in stages. Solve the first paragraph on the scrawl of parchment, and you’ll be given the next mystery to solve. This is how quests work in Sea of Thieves, and you’re not necessarily handed them, as you’ll instead have to go out and search for quests with your crew.

Outside of this, combat was shown in the demo, both on foot, and at sea. On land, the player used a pistol to dispatch various skeletons that rose up from the ground, and this appeared to be the only method of defeating these skeletons, although the player did then pull out a sword at the end of the demo, when fighting against actual humans.

Speaking of fighting humans, this is where naval combat for Sea of Thieves comes into play. During naval combat, each cannon has to be loaded with a cannonball by a player, before they aim and fire each cannon individually toward any opposing ships. This might seem tedious, but it does provide a certain weight to each shot fired from your ship.

To round out the naval combat section, the player used one of their own cannons to propel themselves over to the enemy ship. It’s not known if this is the standard way of boarding a ship, but it’s certainly a stylish one, as the player despatched all enemies on the ship with sword and pistol, winning this bout of combat on the seas.

We also got to see some brand new gameplay footage for Sea of Thieves courtesy of IGN in September, which showed off what happens should you meet your untimely demise while out on the oceans. You'll be transported to the Ferry of the Damned, where you and anyone else stranded there will have to rotate the wheel in the middle of the ship, and then enter a portal back into the normal dimension.

Outside of this, we got another look at combat on the high seas, which this time mainly focused on what each player on board a ship can do in battle. You can either stay on your own ship, repairing any holes that your opponents’ cannons leave in your hull with a plank of wood, or you can try and board the opposing ship, laying into them in close quarters with a sort-of shotgun and a sword.

Sea of Thieves Crossplay for PC and Xbox One Announced

During the Microsoft Gamescom 2017 presentation, the Sea of Thieves devs announced that crossplay would be available for PC and Xbox players as soon as the game eventually releases. The devs also revealed that PCs running Sea of Thieves on the show floor were supporting 4K and 60FPS, on top of crossplay.

Keep an eye on this page, as we'll be updating it with more information regarding Sea of Thieves over the coming months, when Microsoft reveals a release date for the game, as well as other concrete details.

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