The promised second Sea of Thieves scale test arrived Friday with little warning from Rare. Xbox One and Windows 10 PC gamers can once again sail the high seas to hunt for treasure, perform pirate shenanigans, and find new ways to break co-op multiplayer game.
Sea of Thieves second scale test started at 7 a.m. ET / 4 a.m. PT Friday morning and will last until 5 a.m. ET / 2 a.m. PT on Sunday, February 25. Those who participated in the closed beta along with Xbox Insiders will be able to join this second scale test.
Once again, the scale test is meant to test the various servers and back-end services needed to run Sea of Thieves around the world. Rare wants to stress the game with a high number of concurrent players while also simulating outages to test the various improvements the developer has made following the closed beta and last week’s scale test.
The content available to play during the scale test will be identical to the first. While this means hunting loot based on bounties from the Gold Hoarders trading company, it also means experiencing a few new features added to the scale test.
Recently added new features include being able to choose your character from a set of eight randomly generated characters, persistent gear and clothing, more birds in the air, and fish in the water. Additionally, some treasure chests on islands are booby-trapped to spawn skeletons when dug up and skeleton difficulty will scale based on your character’s progression.
Perhaps the biggest gameplay change is limiting players to two equipped weapons – a melee weapon and a firearm. It will be interesting to see if Rare stick with this change or makes further adjustments. Still, it makes players think more about what is equipped when combing beaches for treasure, attacking other ships or storming forts.
There is still no official word on a second closed beta other than Rare confirming one will arrive prior to the Sea of Thieves launch on March 20 and it will feature more content than previously available. That means the weekends starting March 2 and March 9 are the only likely candidates, assuming Rare wants to do a weekend.
If Rare chooses to do a week-long beta test, then fans should expect to see an announcement soon after the scale test ends.