Sea of Thieves' early prototypes looked very different

Sea of Thieves has some of the best-looking sunsets, ocean waves and tropical islands of any game I’ve played. But this wasn’t always the case.

Early design prototypes for Sea of Thieves looked, perhaps unsurprisingly, very different. Ships designs suggested they were made of Lego, while pirates were portrayed by grey sausage finger-like blobs.

This is Sea of Thieves as it was when it was simply an internal prototype within Rare, years before the game’s public unveiling.

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You can see these images, and more, if you go hunting through Sea of Thieves’ menus and trigger the game’s staff credits – something I did idly at the weekend after getting tired of my poor sloop getting shot to pieces yet again.

The screenshots here are shown among other production pics and design documents, along with lots of photos of Rare staff dressed up as pirates.

A later Sea of Thieves build can be seen, too – one which has far more of a resemblance to the final thing. There’s some people playing you might recognise, too – including Xbox boss Phil Spencer and Microsoft exec/habitual sunglasses wearer Kudo Tsunoda.

The final version of Sea of Thieves is out now, of course – although final perhaps isn’t the most accurate word. Rare is planning to build on the game’s launch offering over the coming months – and is due to publish a roadmap of updates later this week.

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