PC Requirements for Sea of Thieves Revealed

Microsoft and Rare have released the PC system requirements for the upcoming Sea of Thieves, ranging from the “Mythical” 4K 60 FPS all the way down to the “Cursed” 540p 30 FPS.

 designed to support a wide range of PC setups and ensure many gamers are able to enjoy the game” the developer said in a press release.

Check out six different sets of specs, and how well they can output your game, in the chart below (click to enlarge):

sea of thieves pc requirements

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New Kingdom Hearts 3 Screenshots Feature Monsters Inc. Transformations

Square Enix has released new screenshots for Kingdom Hearts 3, showing off more of the gameplay from its upcoming action RPG, as well as the new characters and worlds it revealed recently. During the D23 event held on February 12, a new trailer confirmed there will be a Monsters Inc. world in Kingdom Hearts, complete with Mike, Sully, and Boo making an appearance. The new screenshots below feature these iconic characters, in addition to monster versions of Sora, Donald, and Goofy.

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There’s also another look at The Little Mermaid’s Ariel, who looks to appear in the game as a summon. Traditionally, summon characters can be called into battle to lend a hand, similar to the way they’re used in Final Fantasy. The screenshots also include scenes from the Tangled world, where Sora, Donald, and Goofy team up with Rapunzel. If you’d like to see all this in motion, instead of static screenshots, you can watch the latest Kingdom Hearts 3 trailer at the top of the page.

During D23 Square Enix said development of Kingdom Hearts is split into three sections: early, middle, and late. The early phase worlds are around 90 percent complete, while middle section worlds are at roughly 60 percent done. The company didn’t confirm what stage the end section is at, but Tetsuya Nomura, director of the series, said it was “something he’s always wanted to do and put into Kingdom Hearts, ever since the days of working on Final Fantasy.”

Although it is expected to launch in 2018, Kingdom Hearts 3’s release date hasn’t been confirmed yet. Nomura–who is also working directing the Final Fantasy VII Remakeexplained the extremely long wait last year, saying there were numerous factors, including a change in engines. As for directing the two games at once, he actually thinks it’s proven advantageous for him.

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For fans of the music in the Kingdom Hearts series, Square Enix confirmed that Utada Hikaru will be returning for the third game’s theme song, which is called “Don’t Think Twice.” You can hear the song in this second new Kingdom Hearts 3 trailer released at D23.

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Sea of Thieves Has a Very Smart Approach to Server Size

It’s never been quite clear how many players will be able to fit in a Sea of Thieves server, and it turns out there’s a very good reason for that – Rare’s approach to servers is very different to most online games, meaning there’s no definitive answer.

The developer’s focus is on keeping player encounters regular, but not too frequent – the magic number is apparently to see another ship, on average, every fifteen minutes to half an hour, making every encounter different, as well as giving non-violent players the chance to escape.

But in a map as large and spread out as Sea of Thieves’, a high number of players might still be too spread out, or a small group too bunched together, to keep that magic number in check. The solution for Rare is to focus on the distance between players in a server, not just how many players are on that server.

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Star Trek: Discovery: All The Easter Eggs So Far

While Star Trek found a new lease of life on the big screen in 2009, it had been more than a decade since the last TV show in the long-running sci-fi franchise when Star Trek: Discovery premiered last September. The show’s producers faced the difficult task of making a show that appealed to modern audiences and new fans, as well as satisfying die-hard, long-term Trek devotees.

But while Discovery has taken the story and characters in some surprising directions, it’s also very aware of its past. Every episode to date has contained at least one reference or call-back to something from the grand 52-year history of Star Trek. Sometimes these are sly jokes that only the most dedicated fan will spot, and sometimes they are crucial plot-points. So here’s a look at all the Discovery Easter Eggs so far…

Sea of Thieves Dev Explains Why the Maximum Crew Is 4 Players

Sea of Thieves will launch with a maximum crew size (and therefore party size) of four.

Lead designer Mike Chapman confirmed to IGN that the party size from the game’s beta would continue into the full game, saying that the key element for Rare was in how larger groups would (or wouldn’t) communicate:

“The biggest ship was designed for four,” Chapman explained when asked why that became the maximum. “We’ve looked at feedback and of course there’s people who want an 8-player ship, a 10-player ship. The thinking there, as with everything in this game, is really intentful.

“If the two of us were to go out to the pub together with two other friends, you’ve got that intimate relationship, you’re all getting on together. If it becomes six or eight people, you start getting people splintering off and it’s really hard to communicate – four seems like the magic number.”

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Kingdom Come: Deliverance Review in Progress – IGN

Our thoughts at roughly the halfway point of this new realism-focused RPG.

[Editor’s note: Because we didn’t receive Kingdom Come: Deliverance for review until late last week and it’s estimated to be a 50-hour game, our review is still underway. We’re aiming to have it completed and scored by the end of the day on Thursday, February 15. In the interest of hitting that goal, we’re keeping these impressions brief.]

I’ve put around 25 hours into Kingdom Come: Deliverance so far, and I’m finding plenty to be impressed by. The large chunk of wooded, medieval Bohemia across which the bloody and dramatic story takes place shows significant attention to detail and is filled with little historical touches that help it feel like a real place. Towns, farms, and logging camps are all laid out with a strong internal logic and built on a scale that makes sense, as opposed to the standard RPG city in a game like Skyrim that’s designed to feel large, but really isn’t.

Exit Theatre Mode

The “open” world isn’t always as open as I’d like it to be. I’ve run into a number of areas with invisible walls where it looks like I should be able to jump up onto a rock ledge, but am stopped from doing so by an immersion-breaking barrier. There’s also a fairly common tendency to use impassible hedgerows to prevent me from sneaking up on a bandit camp or other objective, though that at least seems consistent within the setting. If you’ve ever been out in the deep woods, you’ll know that getting from A to B as the crow flies isn’t always practical.

Combat has a significant learning curve, but it’s a lot of fun.

Combat has a significant learning curve, but I’ve found it to be a lot of fun the more I’ve gotten the hang of it. Most of the times developers have tried to create a “realistic” first-person melee system, the result has been the next best thing to unusable. But Warhorse’s designers seem to have struck the right balance here: sword fights have a nice tempo and reward technical skill, quick thinking, and most of all patience, but don’t feel cumbersome or incomprehensible. While my character does level up and gains new perks, I feel like the main thing allowing me to take on tougher enemies is that I, the player, am learning new techniques and progressing toward mastery of the mechanics. And in cases where I’ve found myself outclassed, a good majority of quests have a nonviolent solution.

It was a nice bit of levity among the brutal business of medieval life in wartime.

The story up to this point has been gritty, engrossing, and complex, though it tends to fall back on some old-fashioned ideas of medieval historiography in a couple of places. The focus is very small-scale. I find myself solving problems in the margins of a larger conflict involving two half-brothers competing for the throne, which is actually kind of refreshing in the wake of so many fate-of-the-world adventures. The stand-out quest so far has been a Sunday mass in which I had to recite a sermon inspired by contemporary Czech church reformer Jan Hus – an important predecessor to Martin Luther and arguably the real father of the Protestant Reformation – because I’d gone on a drunken bender with the local parish priest the night before and he was too hung over to do it himself. I laughed the whole way through, and it was a nice bit of well-written levity among the often brutal and unpleasant business of medieval life in wartime.

The presentation of the story could definitely stand to be more show than tell, though. During some parts of the main quest chain, I feel like I’ve been playing through wordy dialogue scenes longer than I’ve been doing everything else put together, while I’d rather out be out exploring or stabbing bandits in the face.

Deliverance has been delivering its own share of technical issues, as well. Most noticeably so far is the way that in many dialogue scenes my character has inexplicable missing polygons on his neck, exposing whatever is behind him to the camera.

Exit Theatre Mode

There’s a lot to take in and by my own estimate, I’m only a bit less than halfway through the main story. My overall impression so far is pretty positive. The amount of work that’s gone into the worldbuilding and depictions of medieval society (with a couple exceptions) is downright impressive. Little touches that ground me (like the fact that having dirt on your clothes lowers your persuasiveness when talking to the nobility, forcing you to actually do laundry sometimes) are highly appreciated and help transport me more fully to the era being depicted.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I have a miscarriage of justice to correct. Probably with a sword thrust to one or more faces.

TJ Hafer is a freelacne writer and critic. Find him and ask him about midieval history (seriously) on Twitter.

Sea of Thieves Will Add Microtransactions Around 3 Months After Release

Sea of Thieves will launch without microtransactions, but will add them in its first major content update, planned for around three months after release – but they’ll be for cosmetic rewards only, and won’t feature loot boxes.

During a visit to Rare, executive producer Joe Neate told IGN:

“Our focus at launch

on a great game experience. When we deliver this first major update, that’s when we’ll turn on the ability for players to spend money optionally.

“We thought long and hard about what’s right for our game experience, and the key thing we think is that it has to add to the fun, social nature of the game. So anything in this area will not impact power or progression, and you’ll always know what you’re getting – so that means no loot crates.”

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Sea of Thieves: How It Starts, What You’re Aiming For, and Kraken Attacks

The more we’ve seen of Sea of Thieves, the clearer it’s become that the simple act of playing it will be fun. Its mix of gentle action and almost hardcore seafaring (seriously, you try manning a galleon with three people who don’t know how sails work) is immediately engaging and, more importantly, hilarious.

But what bookends that moment-to-moment play has remained resolutely mysterious since the game’s announcement – how does Sea of Thieves begin, what’s the story, and what are we working towards? After visiting Rare and talking to several of the game’s developers and producers, finally we have some answers.

Let’s begin at the beginning. Sea of Thieves will open with you choosing your pirate. “Choosing” is a deliberate choice of words – this isn’t character customisation. Rare’s made a purposeful decision not to include slider-filled menus. Instead, you begin in a tavern, with eight procedurally-generated pirates to inspect. They’re created based on twenty different parameters – everything from age, to body shape, to overall ‘wonkiness’ (essentially, how asymmetrical they are) – leading to a “practically infinite” number of variations. If you don’t like the 8 you’re shown, you can regenerate another 8 as many times as you like until you find a favourite.

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