Sea of Thieves is embarking on a voyage to provide its community with the ability to live out their best pirate lives on their own terms, with developer Rare announcing that they have begun work on a Custom Server feature to allow players to do exactly that.
Executive Producer Joe "Three Sheets" Neate dropped the news via blog post, explaining that the process of rolling out Custom Servers is likely going to be a lengthy one. He also implied that it will be many a fortnight before most players will have access to the feature, because, initially, Custom Servers will only be available to select community groups and creators.
"As Sea of Thieves has grown we’ve been supporting some of these initiatives in the background, helping people get together on the same server to save on that initial setup time for our community events, but we’ve always harboured a desire to do more." Neate writes. "We have been working for a while on formalising this support, and in the near future we’re going to bring an early Alpha version of Custom Servers to Sea of Thieves as a tool for selected creators and community groups to utilise for community events."
In addition to limiting who can join their server, hosts will be able to restrict how many and what types of ships are permitted, as well as the ability to turn off gold and reputation progression. These features, as Neate explains, focus on giving hosts, creators, and communities more control over their sessions.
When Custom Servers become available to the public, expect to have to drop a few gold doubloons in order to operate one. According to Neate, "it is likely that Custom Servers will eventually be an optional feature that players can access from the Pirate Emporium", referring to the game's real-money store.
In the meantime, however, the team at Rare is still trying to determine what pay model makes the most sense.
"We want to learn more about the desired feature set, usage and cost before deciding exactly how to make this something the wider community can access."