Ahoy! Sea of Thieves is our current favorite pirate game that’s available as an online multiplayer. Swashbuckling adventures like finding buried gold, diving the shark-infested waters for booty from shipwrecks, and plenty of battle awaits the scallywag who’s brave enough to go in search of treasure. Whether you’re playing as a crew of one, or with friends, a lot is going on in this game. Before you board your ship and set sail, it helps to know how to most successfully use the Sea of Thieves map. Grab your grog and lay back in your hammock while we explain everything you need to know about SoT maps.
Before we get started, you should know that there’s more than one kind of map in the Sea of Thieves. We’ll assume you’ve unlocked the map already, or you wouldn’t need to know how to use it. However, there are actually three map-types you’ll need to master to become a true pirate king. First, there’s the quest/voyage map that you’ll find on your radial menu. Secondly, you’ll receive Riddle Maps, which have no real map-markings but rather use words to help you find the locations of treasure. Third and finally, the Map Table on your ship is for navigating between islands on the open seas.
These scrolls can be obtained from each f the three Trading Companies. You can have the first one (from each) for free to get you started, but after that, you’ll have to pay for these scrolls to get better rewards. All you need to do to get them is go to the Gold Hoarders, Merchant Alliance, or Order of Souls. The Gold Hoarders’ quests are hunting for buried treasure. The Merchant Alliance is a timed delivery, and The Order of Souls wants you to hunt down corrupt skeleton captains and bring back their heads. Each quest is different, so the maps are procedural. For those among ye who are naught but simple pirates and that sounds like a lot of big words, it means the details on the maps will be different every time. Once you have a quest map, you take it to your map table and place it there. If you’re playing alone, it’s a little easier, but even with others accepting the quest is basically the same. Once the quest map is on the table, all the buccaneers aboard the ship must vote to accept or refuse. Even as a solo player, you have to vote to approve the quest.
The difficulty level of a given quest should be pretty apparent. The more complicated it seems, the more complicated it is. A ‘pitiful skeleton’ is easy enough for a pirate just getting their sea legs. However, if you leave the game (or get kicked out for being inactive), any quests you didn’t finish are considered abandoned. You’ll have to start again. Make sure you have time to complete what you start, or save it for when you have a little more downtime to play. Voyage Maps will either give you an image of the island you need a name or a list of goods to collect and the name of the outpost where you’ll need to deliver them. You’ll have to hunt, on land, or your world map to find a way to accomplish your quest.
Technically a Riddle Map is just a type of voyage map you get from the Gold Hoarders. The first clue may be visible, but you’ll have to solve it to reveal the next clue and so on. Usually, the first clue is the name of an island. As you interpret the clues and perform the actions, the new clues will eventually lead you to treasure. Final clues often ask you to dig somewhere. You can use your compass and controller vibration to find the location and move the correct number of steps. We have two tips that will help you along the path to riches. First, start at the center of the island, not the edge, and second, all landmarks are landmarks. Containers cannot be landmarks. If the clues are too hard for you, there’s always a way to cheat and find the answers, but you still have to find the locations.
Using your map table isn’t too tricky. You can find it belowdecks on your ship. However, if you’re busy on deck, there are a couple of spots where you can see the Map Table from above as well when you need to reference it quickly. Sailing isn’t easy in this game; you’ll have to concentrate and keep up just to stay afloat and headed the right direction. From the sloop, you can peer at your map over the rear balcony. Alternately, if you’re on the galleon, there’s a grille in the floor where you can see the map. It’s not perfect, but it’s a whole lot faster and more straightforward than trying to run up and downstairs to see where you’re at.
Tips & Tricks
There are sixty-three islands on the map, so you’ll have to pay careful attention to find what you’re looking for, especially when you first start. Some islands are large. Others are barely a bump of sand and a palm tree. Make sure you pay attention to your map as you sail because the edges of the world will kill you if you’re not savvy and careful. If the sea and sky turn red, run for territory closer to the center of the map before your ship takes too much damage. Interacting with your map isn’t too difficult. You can zoom in and out. The only trick to it is remembering to scroll, so you’re at the proper level of zoom to see the details you need most. If you’re looking for an island on another map and you don’t have the name, seek it out based on the shape.
Keep in mind that while seagulls indicate a shipwreck below the waves and light beams indicate a siren who can teleport you back to your ship if you’re tossed overboard in a fight, a cloud shaped like a skull with glowing eyes in the sky can show you the location of an island where a treasure is buried. There’s no guarantee it will be the treasure you seek, but it’s an excellent way to find the right place when you get close. The other trick to using your Map Table properly is that there are ‘secret’ islands. By secret, we mean unmarked. If you run across something that isn’t on your map, don’t get confused. Scroll in ll the way where it should be to doublecheck. However, if it’s not listed, think of it as a pseudo-easter-egg. The extra islands are meant to be part of the game.
Hopefully, this handy guide to the maps helps you to dominate the oceans in Sea of Thieves. With the hints and guidance here, you should be zipping around the map like a salty old sea dog in no time. Do you know anything about SoT maps that we didn’t mention here? If so, please let us know in the comments section so everyone can get their hands on more swag.