“Fort of the Damned”
|Release Date||October 16th, 2019|
|← 2.0.7||2.0.9 →|
Can you believe it? We’re already on our fourth Monthly Content Update, and this one is set to be every bit as frightening as it is fun! Have a peep at our latest Sea of Thieves Content Update trailer below for a preview of what’s coming your way in October’s offering...
The frights and thrills of the Fort of the Damned promise plenty of riches to those brave enough to take on the challenge, but pirates can expect a whole range of new additions to the game beyond that – from a much-anticipated instrument to a new duo crew Arena option for all the Sloop (Sea) Dogs out there. We hope you’re ready, as there’s plenty to be getting stuck into. So without further ado, here are your release notes for this month!
Fort of the Damned
An eerie mist rolls into the Sea of Thieves, it transpires that not all the Dark Relics were safely retrieved, and twisted rituals have secretly continued. Dark Forces have begun to emerge from the shadows, seizing an old fort for their evil rituals and opening a window to the Sea of the Damned. Rally your crew and battle through the emerging Shadows of Fate to thwart their evil schemes!
Fort of the Damned - Release Notes:
- Ritual Skull Seeker Bounty Voyages – Stitcher Jim has warned of the presence of a dangerous new type of Shadow Skeletons ambushing pirates across the seas. While Duke doesn’t know the exact locations of these Shadows of Fate himself, he does know where to find Shadow Captains holding treasure maps leading to these dangerous entities. While these treasure maps also lead to high-value rewards, Duke warns players to collect to the Ritual Skulls they find as they will be needed to take on the Fort of the Damned!
- Duke will even offer Doubloon rewards to players who don’t want to take on the ominous Fort. Pick up a free Bounty Voyage from Duke for your region and head out to take them down! Pirate Legends are offered a more rewarding Bounty Voyage allowing them to retrieve multiple Ritual Skulls along with other rewards. All Skull Seeker Voyages are time-limited for the duration of the Fort of the Damned update.
- Ritual Skull Seeker Commendations and Rewards – A range of Mercenary Commendations are available to unlock for helping Duke fight back the Shadows of Fate emerging across the sea, earning players Doubloons as well as the ‘Skull Keeper’ Title. All Skull Seeker Voyage Commendations, Doubloons and Title are time-limited for the duration of the Fort of the Damned update.
- Ritual Skull Bilge Rat Stash Voyages – For those eager to take on the Fort, Duke sneakily stashed some Ritual Skulls away during Dark Relics and now offers players a Black Market Voyage to pick up a quick Ritual Skull from the Outpost itself. These Black Market Voyages can be purchased for either Doubloons or gold and are repeatable to your heart’s content! Bilge Rat Stash Voyages will become a permanent addition to Duke’s Black Market after the Fort of the Damned update.
- The Fort of the Damned – Dark forces have seized Old Boot Fort and begun their eerie rituals, twisting it into the Fort of the Damned! Pushing through the mist to reach the island, crews must light the six Ferryman statues with the correct Flames of Fate retrieved from the Ferry of the Damned to release the ritual altar. Sacrificing a Ritual Skull to the altar, crews can summon forth the Shadows of Fate and fight back the horde before facing off against a familiar ghastly apparition.
- Those fearless enough to take on the Fort will announce their presence to the rest of the world via a new red skull cloud visible to all crews on the horizon. Success bestows a range of high-value rewards from a bountiful supply of Stronghold Kegs, chests and skulls through to a guaranteed Chest of Legends and two Reaper’s Chests in the vault. Be sure to check the ship’s map! The Fort of the Damned will become a permanent addition to the world after the Fort of the Damned update, allowing players to tackle this threat at any time.
- Fort of the Damned Commendations and Rewards – A new tab has been added to the Bilge Rats Reputation page to house a new set of persistent Commendations for helping Duke deal with this threat. Earn Doubloons to spend in the Black Market along the way, as well unlocking the ‘Raider of the Damned’ Title. All Fort of the Damned Commendations and rewards will become a permanent addition to the world after the Fort of the Damned update.
- Ferryman of the Damned Rewards – The Outpost clothing stores have been stocked with a selection of new Ferryman-themed player cosmetics to celebrate the Festival of the Damned. All Ferryman of the Damned Rewards will become a permanent addition to the world after the Fort of the Damned update.
- Fort of the Damned Achievements – New Xbox achievements have been added as part of the Fort of the Damned update, earned by unlocking in-game Commendations. A total of 35 gamerscore is available to earn from this update and these achievements will persist in the game for future updates:
Duo Sloop Arena
Galleons no longer have the run of the Arena: pairs of pirates now have the opportunity to compete as part of a duo Sloop crew! So grab a friend and set a course for The Arena to take on other duo crews and determine your dominance...
The Arena - Release Notes:
- Duo Sloops – Sloops have now entered The Arena! You can team up with one crewmate to compete against four rival Sloop crews in this duo experience. Open crews will still match you with one other player for anyone looking to jump straight into the action.
- New Arena Locations – Six new contest locations have been added to The Arena, each with two variations. These new contests will feature chests on Outposts for players to find and cash in, along with even more daring Sea Dog delivery locations.
- Minimum Crew Size – To help ensure a competitive experience, a minimum closed crew size is in place for the Galleon and Sloop Arena modes. This ensures you get a great experience each time from both your own crew and any crews you face on the seas.
If you want to find out more about the design principles behind the changes we've made to The Arena this month, Lead Designer Shelley Preston has you covered with this Developer Update post on the Forums!
As always, we’ve been beavering away on more features in the background, so it’s not just the main Fort of the Damned challenge and duo Sloops in The Arena sailing in with October’s update – check out this selection of additional incoming features!
New Features - Release Notes:
- Dueling Banjos? – Players will now find the new banjo instrument on the second page of their item radial. Join in with your crew with all the regular shanties on your new banjo!
- Skeleton Captain Sightings – Reports from across the Sea of Thieves tell of roaming Skeleton Captains sighted on islands. These will drop a Villainous Skull upon defeat, in addition to a Skeleton’s Orders map pinpointing the location of a buried stash. These stashes provide a range of high-value rewards, including a guaranteed Ritual Skull and a strong chance of digging up a Reaper’s Chest!
- Support for ‘Toggle’ When Using Items – A ‘Reduce Hold to Use Item’ option has been added to the accessibility settings. This allows many items to support toggling where previously a player would have to hold. Players can now aim a weapon and block with a single press, or raise their lantern or check the time with a single press.
- Resolution Scaling – A new video option has been added for PC players to dictate what percentage of your current resolution the game renders at. For example, if a player sets this setting to 200% and their current resolution is 1920x1080, the game will render at 3840x2160 (4K). Settings higher than 100% will negatively affect performance but will improve graphical quality. Settings lower than 100% may improve performance but reduce graphical quality.
- Smile, You Son Of A… – Defeating a shark by detonating a Gunpowder Keg in its vicinity will now earn the player the ‘Smile, You Son Of A…’ achievement.
The Pirate Emporium has now been restocked with rare goods freshly smuggled into the Sea of Thieves. We’ve got some exciting new items on sale, so head to the Pirate Emporium from the Sea of Thieves main menu before jumping into the game, or at an Outpost via the new store opened above the Order of Souls tent.
Pirate Emporium - Release Notes:
- Skeleton Pets! – What better way to explore the eerie Fort of the Damned than with a Skeleton Cockatoo or Skeleton Marmoset perched on your arm? These special skeleton pets are time-limited for the Fort of the Damned update, so grab them while you can.
- Bilge Rat Pet Outfits – Each pet can now be decked out in a ragtag outfit worthy of the Bilge Rat moniker. Go to the Pets section of the Pirate Emporium to purchase an outfit before heading to the Pet Chest to equip it.
- Cutthroat Ship Collection – Prepare for a Supreme Victory! Fans of Killer Instinct will recognise the sight of Fulgore spearheading the new Cutthroat Ship Collection. Pick up the individual Cutthroat items or the Collector’s Figurehead and Sails to get that Ultra Combo. A Cutthroat Ship Bundle is also on offer which includes all the regular ship cosmetics at a nice discount!
- Taunt Emote Bundle – Feel the need to throw some shade at your rivals? Pick up the Taunt Emote Bundle for a range of combative emotes to ensure they know who they’re dealing with!
- Emote Variety Bundle – A range of new emotes have been added for the Variety Pack 2 Bundle! Give crewmates the Slow Clap for that awful parking job, or rage at your opponent with an Angry Fist as they sail off with your treasure-laden Rowboat.
- Emote and Ship Tabs – With our emote and ship collections growing, new tabs have been added to the top bar of the Emporium to allow quick navigation between sections.
- Cursed Companions Bundle (Store Only) – Available only on the Xbox and Microsoft Stores. Spread a little spookiness with the Skeleton Marmoset and Skeleton Cockatoo – cursed pets for a cursed pirate! In addition to these spooky companions, this bundle also contains the Taunt Emote Bundle and free bonus gold! Head to the Store to find out more.
- Parrot Starter Bundle (Store Only) – Available only on the Xbox and Microsoft Stores. Get a headstart with the Parrot Starter Bundle, packed with items from the Pirate Emporium plus free bonus cosmetics and gold! Head to the Store to find out more.
Duke’s Black Market has been refreshed and now offers a range of new items; from the introduction of the beloved ‘Wild Rose’ set through to the previously unattainable ‘Wailing Barnacle’ Clothing, there’ll surely be something to tempt all pirates. Remember these offers will only last until the next Monthly Content Update, so grab them now! (Duke has also mentioned that these items will appear back in stock in future updates).
Black Market - Release Notes
- Wild Rose Clothing – Introduced in the Shores of Gold Tall Tales, this month offers the beginnings of the Wild Rose clothing set. Collect the Wild Rose Jacket, Hat and Dress, all available for Doubloons.
- Wailing Barnacle Clothing – Duke has heard your plea! This month he’s stocked the previously unattainable Wailing Barnacle clothing, allowing pirates to complete this soggy set. Available for Doubloons, players can pick up the Eyepatch, Hook, Pegleg, Gloves, Belt, Trousers and Boots of the Wailing Barnacle.
- Fearless Bone Crusher Weapons – Continuing the Bone Crusher theme, Duke is offering the Fearless Bone Crusher weapons this month. Available for Doubloons, players can acquire the Fearless Bone Crusher Flintlock, Blunderbuss, Cutlass and Eye of Reach.
- Redcoat Executive Admiral Clothing – How about something for your gold? This month sees the release of a new twist on the Executive Admiral clothing set. Players can acquire the full set by dipping into their supply of gold!
- Deep Ocean Crawler Items – Continuing the Ocean Crawler theme, this month Duke delivers the Deep Ocean Crawler items for players to earn. By digging into their gold reserves, players can acquire the Deep Ocean Crawler Bucket, Compass, Fishing Rod, Lantern, Pocket Watch, Shovel, Speaking Trumpet, Spyglass and Tankard.
While Duke has begun to corner the market with his Black Market exclusives, the Outpost Stores have begun to up their efforts. The stores are now stocking a range of new cosmetics for players to further customise their Pirate!
Outpost Cosmetics - Release Notes:
- More Feminine Clothing Options – Outpost clothing stores now stock a range of new dresses, skirts, leggings and shirts suited to female pirates. However, as with all clothing on the Sea of Thieves, everyone is free to dress however they please. Does your absolute unit look quite fetching in that crop top? Rock it!
- New Hair Dyes – Outpost clothing stores now stock a range of colourful new hair dyes for you to pick from.
- New Two-Tone Hair Dyes – Pirate Legends can venture into the Pirate Legend Hideout to purchase a range of two-tone hair dyes exclusively from the Hideout clothing shop!
- Hunter’s Ship Set – Outpost shipwrights now stock the remaining cosmetics needed to complete the Hunter’s Ship Set. Players will find the Hunter Cannons, Capstan and Wheel available for purchase.
- Banjos! – Outpost equipment stores now also stock a wide range of banjos for purchase. Grab your favourite and pluck out a tune!
- Change of Underwear? – All pirates now can change the colour of their underwear through a new tab in the Vanity Chest.
- Rag and Bone Crates – Following the events of Smuggler’s Fortune, Rag and Bone Crates have begun washing up on shores, allowing crews to continue unlocking the persistent Commendations. These can now be delivered to Seaposts for five Doubloons and no longer have a delivery time requirement.
- Reaper’s Chest Payout – Players will now be rewarded with 25 Doubloons on cashing in a Reaper’s Chest!
- Cursed Chest Payout – The Chest of Sorrow and Chest of a Thousand Grogs are now worth significantly more gold and reputation when handed in!
- Defy the Storm! – In true death-defying pirate style, taunting the storm by wielding your sword now increases your chance of being struck by lightning. And when it does strike, expect it to pack more of a punch… see you on the Ferry!
- Skeleton Ship Battles – The Skeleton Ship battles found around the outskirts of the world in The Shores of Plenty, The Ancient Isles and The Wilds have been replaced with two more central ship battles placed near the middle of the world, making them more accessible with a shorter sailing distance. The Devil's Roar Skeleton Ship battle remains unchanged.
- Where Have You Been? – When your pet has been out on an adventure, they now come back dirty from their travels. Firing them out of a cannon also covers them in a little soot!
- They Must Be Hungry! – When offering food to your pet (or even to someone else’s), they will now quickly nom away the treat.
- Picking Up Your Pet – When selecting your pet from the Pet Chest located on your ship or at an Outpost, they will now instinctively jump onto your arm so that you can see them.
- Pet Previews – The monkeys are now much happier when viewed in the preview window of the Pirate Emporium. The parrots now also look much more excited and will dance when previewed.
- Actions Through Sprint – On coming out of a sprint, an action such as aiming or blocking will be re-triggered as long as the button is held. In common scenarios, players taking aim then sprinting will find that when they exit sprint with the button still held their character will resume aiming, where previously they would need to release then refocus their aim.
- Sword Swing Distance – The distance a sword swing can reach has been reduced.
- Breaking Through the Shroud – On retrieving the Shroudbreaker from Grace and plotting a course into the Devil's Shroud, players will now find a revised visual and audio experience as they pass through the mystical barrier hiding the Shores of Gold from the rest of the world.
- Raining on Your Cargo – Improvements have been made to how cargo responds to rain in a range of environments. Cargo Run Plant and Silk Crates should now only become wet from rain when players can see the rain on their screen.
- Arming the Sea Dogs Tavern Exterior – In Adventure, Ammo Crates have been added to the Sea Dogs Tavern exterior. This should improve the pace of combat for crews choosing to defend this landmark.
- Sea Dogs Tavern Exterior Challenge Route – In Adventure, modifications have been made to the reverse challenge route to make it a little less punishing.
- Cursed Cannonballs – When held, Cursed Cannonballs now emit a purple or green light.
- Players should no longer find themselves spawning on the Shores of Gold when attempting to use a mermaid to return to their ship.
- Aiming or blocking shortly after sprinting will now correctly aim the weapon.
- Attempting to block following a sprint will correctly initiate block, and other players will see them blocking.
- When igniting a chain of Gunpowder Kegs, they will now explode in chain order.
- Players can no longer ‘prime’ a weapon, enabling them to perform a double shot with dual guns.
- Switching to another item or weapon while casting a rod will no longer cause player animations to break.
- Performing a sword lunge into water will no longer play the lunge animation twice.
- Tapping the left bumper or [Q] should now switch back to the previously selected item from that radial.
- The harpoon Rowboat is now blocked from passing through locked doors or being manipulated into a position where it can retrieve items through locked doors.
- The hands on the Ocean Crawler Pocket Watch no longer clip into the watch.
- Players can no longer leave the Ferry of the Damned without passing through the door.
- Players standing in a certain location on a Galleon will no longer be pushed through the hull.
- Items held in players’ hands should no longer start to jitter the further they are away from the centre of the map.
- When purchasing a Letter of Recommendation, the shop item now automatically locks without needing to refresh the screen.
- Players who are in a limping state prior to server migration no longer become stuck in that state after arriving on the new server.
- The Make Friends emote once again allows players to become friends.
- Resolved scenarios where tooltips could display the incorrect yellow-highlighted words.
- Replenishing the ammo of a stowed weapon will now correctly refresh the ammo counter.
- A range of cannons have had their player placement revised to ensure players climbing inside are correctly nestled inside the barrel.
- The Storage Crate can now correctly take an item into each slot and fill the whole page.
- Removed the word ‘emote’ from all emotes in the UI.
- When retracting a fishing line, the moment a fish is hooked no longer causes the player to become briefly stuck.
- The oars on the Rowboat should no longer become invisible when climbing in.
- The Brigantine can once again be fully emptied of water!
- The Seeker of Tales Commendation description has been revised to better match the unlock criteria.
- Health regen is paused by the player taking damage. Eating cooked food while taking damage over time will no longer cancel out the damage.
- Selling a snake to the Merchant Alliance now correctly removes the snake audio effects from the world.
- Lighting has been revised across a range of lanterns to ensure they are not too bright.
- Movement animations should continue to play correctly when multiple players and pets are all animating in close proximity.
- Wielding a cannonball while interacting with a raised cannon should no longer cause the cannonball to appear in the incorrect location.
- Interacting with a Chest of a Thousand Grogs now plays the correct audio effects, and dropping it correctly stops the audio.
- Equipping the Fearless Bone Crusher Flag on the Brigantine now displays the correct flag.
- The Glorious Sea Dog Blunderbuss(es) now has the correct icon when previewed in the armoury.
- The session setup panel in the Sea of Thieves main menu will now display the correct information when accepting an invite.
- ‘The Revenge of the Morningstar’ Tall Tale – if defeated by the Captain, the battle music will now correctly end.
- Destroying a gunpowder-wielding Shadow Skeleton will now correctly destroy the skeleton.
- Projectile VFX should no longer pass through walls when fired at close range.
- Cooking smoke VFX updated to be clearer and show a better transition to cooked.
- Water leaking VFX now plays in correct hole locations on the middle deck of the Galleon.
- Pirate Emporium vendors will no longer accept chest hand-ins for gold and reputation.
- While the game is open, purchasing Ancient Coins from the Xbox or Microsoft Store now correctly refreshes your game balance.
- Ancient Skeletons’ footsteps are now distinctly heard when spawning alongside many other skeletons.
- Players can no longer cause the Ancient Coins purchase screen to stay on-screen by leaving the Pirate Emporium.
- When previewing emotes in the Pirate Emporium or Vanity Chest, they should now be placed centrally in the preview window.
- Places where [Q] and [E] are used as button prompts can now also be clicked with a mouse.
- When pets become scared by surrounding danger, they will no longer repeatedly play their scared audio effects.
- The ‘unequip’ option in the Pet Chest now correctly previews the result.
- Dropping a pet in the Sea Dogs Tavern hot tub no longer causes it to fall through the floor.
- Pets perched on a mast will no longer become stuck in place if the mast is destroyed.
- Pets placed on a perch spot by someone other than their owner will no longer stay in that spot indefinitely.
- Pets no longer become stuck beneath a cannon if player leaves and returns to the ship while they are perched.
- Playing an instrument then switching to an emote will now correctly cause your pet to switch to an emote reaction.
- Pets eating food given by players will now use appropriate crumb effects.
- Stroking your pet while in water no longer stalls the stroke animation.
- When another player feeds your pet, they now animate correctly.
- Pet SFX should now correctly match the animation being played in all scenarios.
- Pets should no longer walk off the side of jetties when turning around.
- Improved pet navigation on Old Faithful, Plunder Outpost and Shores of Gold.
- Joining an Adventure session via an invite received while in an Arena lobby will no longer play the incorrect intro sequence.
- ‘New Maps Available’ Toast should no longer appear before the contest begins.
- Approaching the end of a contest, there should be no time where a crew becomes unable to gain or lose score.
- Colour palette of the Sea Dogs Ship Set revised to ensure the sail and hull colours match.
- Campfires have now returned to Sailor’s Bounty.
- Players can no longer pass through geometry and get underneath the island on Marauder’s Arch or Smuggler’s Bay.
- Players should no longer become stuck underneath a stairway in the external part of the Sea Dogs Tavern
- Players should no longer experience incorrect collision around the gatehouse cannons on Lost Gold Fort.
- Cliff face collision at the beginning of the Sea Dogs Challenge route revised to prevent players from bypassing part of the challenge – sneaky!
- Skeleton navigation improved to prevent skeletons becoming stuck on Hidden Spring Keep.
- ‘The Art of the Trickster’ Tall Tale – the Trickster’s Lair encounter has now been relit to ensure each lever is noticeable.
- Resolved incorrect rendering when leaving the caves on Sailor’s Bounty.
- Exterior lights no longer bleed through the ceiling of the tavern while inside.
- Cosmetics Saving Across Sessions – Some players may find that after equipping cosmetics then leaving the game, on their return those cosmetics will no longer be equipped.
- ‘Sailor of the Shores of Gold’ Title Not Unlocking – Some players may find that after having completed the ‘Seeker of Grand Adventure’ Commendation, they are not awarded the ‘Sailor of the Shores of Gold’ Title.
To learn more about the currently tracked known issues on Sea of Thieves and their status, head over to our Known Issues support site article.
Download and Installation
- Xbox One: 4.48 GB
- Xbox One X: 7.54 GB
- Windows 10: 6.77.54 GB