Surviving the Open Seas in Sea of Thieves PvP

How to hold your own against other players in Sea of Thieves.

Sea of Thieves lets players live the life of a pirate but that includes everyone. Rare’s bright and colorful adventure title contains the full pirate experience and that doesn’t just include treasure chests and pirate ships. 

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Blinding players with a bucket of pirate puke and lunge jumping are just a few tricks in Sea of Thieves combat that you’ll need to know to live a pirate’s life. 

Sea of Thieves is a living and breathing game. It’s part of the ‘Games as a Service’ genre, which means even if you are focused on doing your own thing, there will be other players.

Exploring, treasure hunting and everything in between can be done solo but you won’t be alone while sailing the open seas. You will encounter other players while living the life of a pirate so it’s in your best interest to get used to that and prepare accordingly.

The only thing worse than being plundered by other players is hearing your ship creak and groan before being swallowed by the sea. Our guide can provide you with some tips to help you keep your gold, and maybe even relieve other players of theirs. 

Surviving the Open Seas in Sea of Thieves PvP

1. Arena is more structured and focused on combat but Adventure Mode also puts you out on the open seas with gold and pirates

You CAN play Arena mode but Adventure mode contains PvP elements, along with much more. It gets easier to find other players on servers as you play if you’re looking for a fight.

You’ll also learn more about the world and grow as you complete quests in the process. You can also find a fight pretty quickly by checking Emissary tables. 

2. Check Emissary tables for toy ships 

If you see a toy ship then other players are working on quests for this faction. You have a few options at your disposal. You can take the quest too and keep an eye out for the other players — or go look for them and take their spoils.

Just make sure you’re prepared with the right equipment before setting sail. 

3. You can’t go wrong with a sword and pistol 

You have several options to choose from when it comes to weapons in Sea of Thieves. It’s tempting to run with the strongest or even just two guns (which you can totally do!), but you can’t go wrong with a sword and pistol.

It sounds basic but you just can’t beat the mobility and speed afforded to you with this loadout. You may eventually develop different strategies that call for some other weapon choices but for now just go with what works.

As long as your opponents take damage and you don’t, you’ll win. Make it easier on yourself by sticking with the basics. It’s also easier to branch out with more advanced abilities while playing it safe with a sword and pistol.

4. Lunge jumping is where it’s at

Listen, if you’re not already lunge jumping then we need to fix that right now. It’s an essential skill that can absolutely turn the tide of a battle, or give you the jump on unsuspecting enemies. 

Lunge jumping helps you jump much farther, and it can be used for so many different things during combat. For starters, you can quickly close in on another player and kill them before they have a chance to heal, escape, or make their way toward you.

You can also jump across gaps and take the fight to an enemy ship. This is perfect for surprises or if they try to get away with stolen goods. After all, that stolen treasure belongs to you. 

To Lunge Jump, hold block + lunge forward but jump right as your lunge activates. It takes some time to master and commit to muscle memory but it’s worth it. 

5. Block during combat

This sounds silly but most players don’t block. A lot of players just focus on dealing quick damage so blocking will give you a huge advantage against most players. Pay attention to the combat rhythm too so you confidently block more often.

Pirate rules say you’ll need to attack or move after blocking three hits. It’s just the way it works. Don’t forget and give opponents an easy opening!

6. Don’t forget to heal

Another basic tip but all the little damage adds up. It’s easy to focus on staying alive but some fruit can make it easier. Any fruit will do but pineapples restore 100% health in just two bites.

Bananas restore 20% health; coconuts restore 30% health; Pomegranates restore 40% health; Mangoes restore 50% health.  You can also eat meat but make sure you cook it. And don’t eat snakes, unless you’re trying to throw up into your bucket.

7. Throw puke in combat encounters

You can throw up in your bucket by holding it out in front of you while throwing up. It’s pretty gross but you can throw it on other players to temporarily hinder their vision. This can give you time to heal, escape, or deal some last minute damage to the player or their ship. 

8. Listen closely during combat

There’s a creaking groan that is your last warning before you lose your ship. If you hear a noise that sounds like wood creaking before it breaks then you have very little time until your ship sinks.

Make repairs quickly to the mast or patch up holes fast before it’s too late. Staying alive should be your most important priority but what is a pirate without their ship? Make sure to pay close attention to your ship’s health.

Sometimes it may seem like players are retreating or healing when in reality they’re applying some well placed damage to sink you and your ship. 

9. Don’t drop your anchor on islands 

Sailing efficiently will keep you alive so pay attention. Yes, Sea of Thieves is beautiful but capture some quick pictures for later and keep your head up. Think of stopping as a multi-step process.

Dropping your anchor is an option but it leaves you and your ship very vulnerable. As you approach your destination, slow down and raise your sail, but don’t drop your anchor.

It may take several tries before your timing is just right but it’s worth the practice. The goal is to stop your ship parallel to islands and outposts. It takes several seconds to raise your anchor and that’s enough time for skilled players to deal some serious damage to your ship.

If you always keep your anchor raised then a quick getaway is always an option. If another ship arrives or you encounter trouble on an island, you can leave immediately. 

10. Turn into the wind and aim your sail forward if you’re using a Sloop, which you should be if you’re playing by yourself! 

The Sloop is the fastest ship in the game. It sounds unfair but it’s really not. Anyone can use a Sloop and it’s made with solo players in mind. If you’re being pursued then aim your Sloop’s sail forward.

You should be able to escape without much difficulty, unless the other players are also using a Sloop. Remember your training or head into a storm. Other players are less likely to give chase if you’re heading into danger. It worked for Han Solo and it might work for you too.

At the very least, the other player(s) will need to stay at the wheel to keep the ship from being tossed around by stormy waves. This will at least buy you some time to heal and make quick repairs. 

11. Don’t fly the Reaper’s Flag unless you’re looking for a fight

Some players don’t realize what the Reaper’s Flag is or what it does. It looks cool but anyone who doesn’t know will quickly learn what it does. 

The Reaper’s Flag puts your location on the map for everyone on the server. It’s perfect if you’d like to fight other players for their gold but be prepared for a fight.

Related: Beginner’s Guide to Sea of Thieves


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Prima Games Staff
The staff at Prima Games.