Rare announced last month that Sea of Thieves will be going through another major overhaul soon after the new year, and that time has almost arrived. The game is moving to a seasonal content delivery system and gaining a battle pass like many other live-service titles. Today, Rare provided the first complete look at the new systems coming to the pirate adventure game later this week.
Each season will last around three months, containing an injection of new features at the start as well as events, quality of life changes, and other updates while it is active. Players will have 100 levels of Renown to climb through while a season is active, with each one offering Gold, Doubloons, and various cosmetic rewards for pirates and ships.
Simply playing the game is enough to climb levels, as almost every action - pirate or not - provides Renown. There are also special challenges named Trials that players can complete for a boost of Renown. These can include deeds such as setting skeletons on fire or simply catching a certain fish in a certain area. Pirate Legends have a few special items just for them to unlock too.
"This move to a Seasonal structure is designed to enrich the game and provide players with the freedom to enjoy Sea of Thieves their way, while making sure that a feeling of progression is present throughout a whole gameplay session," said Rare. "We know how frustrated some of you have felt when something’s gone awry and you’ve lost loot, so Seasonal play is there to let you make progress and leave satisfied every time you set sail."
Interestingly, everything mentioned above is free to achieve for all players without needing a premium pass. There is an optional paid option available named the Plunder Pass - which costs $10 in Ancient Coins - but only 11 additional premium items are given out during the first season. These items will remain exclusive to the Plunder Pass until a season is over and then arrive at the Pirate Emporium later.
Sea of Thieves Season One is slated to kick off on January 28 across PC, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X|S for players that own the game or play it via Xbox Game Pass.