Disclaimer: I haven't been playing the game for very long and I'm not super knowledgeable about all the mechanics.
In a way I really appreciate how most things that you can acquire in the game are purely cosmetic, but I am curious about how some sort of skill or perk system could influence gameplay. Would you be in favour of some sort of "sidegrade" approach rather than upgrade, where traits would often come with a downside? For example:
First mate: You turn the wheel slightly quicker, but eating bananas restores less health.
Landcrab: Increases your walking and running speed, but decreases your swimming speed and the amount of time you can hold your breath underwater.
Quartermaster: Your inventory space is increased, but you cannot carry treasure chests.
Sharpshooter: You re-load your Eye of Reach quicker, but cannot equip a cutlass.
Woodworker: You repair damaged hulls quicker, but climb ladders slower.
And so on… balacing and avoiding meta builds is key, I guess. Especially since upsides/downsides have to be considered in light of those who only want to PvE/PvP. These are just off the top of my head.
Maybe each player could have just 1-2 traits active, and you could unlock and switch traits at outposts for gold and/or after unlocking specific achievements.
I think something like this could lead to interesting gameplay dynamics and different people in a crew could really get to aim for traits that fit their playstyle.
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