After what seems like forever in closed alphas, Sea of Thieves is finally making the jump to a closed beta. Xbox One and Windows 10 PC players will have their shot at Rare’s spin on high-seas multiplayer pirate adventures at the end of January.
Sea of Thieves is officially launching March 20 for the Xbox One and PC, but the closed beta comes first on Wednesday, January 24. Those who participated in the game’s Insider Programme will be given access starting at 7 a.m. ET / 4 a.m. PT that morning. They will be joined by those who pre-order the title either through the Xbox or Windows store or through a retailer.
The closed beta will run for five days and end at 3 a.m. ET / 12 a.m. PT on Monday, January 29. Pirates interested in Sea of Thieves shouldn’t expect a taste of the full version of the game. Rare crafted a special version of the game just for the beta test in order to keep the bulk of the pirate life a surprise for the full release in March.
There is no word yet if another Sea of Thieves beta will be available prior to launch.
Rare is also lifting the non-disclosure agreement (NDA) for the Sea of Thieves closed beta. Closed alpha participants were not allowed to capture any gameplay content. However, everyone will be able to stream, capture, and screenshot gameplay as much as they desire.
Those who have not tried Sea of Thieves yet will want to gather some friends by using the Looking for Group (LFG) Xbox LIVE feature to put a pirate party together. The game has a strong multiplayer focus as players sail ships from island to island, hunt for treasure via treasure maps, and fight skeletons on land.
Don’t expect encounters with other players to be friendly either. In true pirate fashion, players can attack others on land or stage ship-to-ship attacks, complete with boarding by being shot from cannons.
Sea of Thieves was delayed to 2018, along with Crackdown 3 and State of Decay 2, after being part of the Xbox One exclusive line-up for 2017. What other Microsoft exclusives will be joining them for the year is still unknown.