The Sea Of Thieves Success Story, How The Swashbuckling Pirate Game Continues To Bring In New Players

The Sea Of Thieves Success Story, How The Swashbuckling Pirate Game Continues To Bring In New Players
Credit: Rare via YouTube

Originally released in 2018, Sea of Thieves has gone from strength to strength, recently hitting the highest concurrent number of players on Steam in the game’s two-year history. How is it that this swashbuckling pirate game is still such a hit, and actually continuing to grow two years after launch?

Sea of Thieves hit a million sales on Steam in July 2020 but peaked at around 60,000 concurrent players at the time. That number had dwindled slightly over the past few months, but the recent Steam Winter sale (and a fantastic deal on SoT) saw those numbers spike back up.

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A recent trailer on the official Sea of Thieves YouTube channel was dedicated to 1,000 days of the game, a nostalgic look back on two years of updates, development, and content that have kept the game thriving, despite the various, well-known problems with the game.

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Yes, Sea of Thieves can be laggy. There are crazy bugs that can happen, including being squashed to death by your own ship. Crashes to desktop are not uncommon on PC, and the framerates on Xbox vary wildly from smooth as rum to as rough as sand.

Yes, the content updates have slowed considerably in the latter part of 2020 (due, most likely, to this ongoing global pandemic), and many in the community feel like the golden days of Sea of Thieves are far behind them.

But what lies underneath these problems is a surprisingly underrated game, best enjoyed with friends. A game of adventure, friendship, riddle-solving, and ship-sinking. A game that still looks gorgeous, in its own way.

Thanks in part to the recent Steam sale and the game featuring on the Xbox Game Pass, more people have been able to get to grips with Sea of Thieves. That’s no easy feat. The game isn’t the most welcoming for new players. Your ship will sink. Many times.

If you scratch away at the surface enough – and get together a crew of friends – you’ll soon discover that your ship sinking is all part of the fun. Treasure is meaningless. You’ll discover hordes of gold, lose it to the Kraken, and then be raided by a bunch of elite 11-year-olds.

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Rare, the studio behind Sea of Thieves, has shown no real signs that they intend to deliberately slow down the release of content. The game has improved massively in two years, who knows what it’ll be like by 2022.