Sea of Thieves

Suggestion : Add risk/reward and PL content to Skull Forts

the first 10 minutes of sea of thieves gameplay captured in gq9u 1024x576 - Suggestion : Add risk/reward and PL content to Skull Forts

I was thinking about how unfortunate it is that Skull Forts, despite originally being designed to be a group project where tensions are high and nobody can know for sure which crew will leave alive and with how much loot, has become a way to reliably make a quick buck, relatively stress-free.

What I came up with would add an optional layer of risk/reward to forts, and potentially an additional layer of content if your crew has a Pirate Legend.

Once a skull fort captain dies, his skull key could still be used on the vault door, or instead be inserted in another slot found on a pedestal (which appears when the captain dies) around the island. This would upgrade and/or add loot to the vault room, restart the skull fort, and update the skull cloud (different cloud shape and/or olor to the intermittent flash) to broadcast to all that this vault just got a lot more worth the trouble.

I think letting players upgrade the fort twice in such a way would be appropriate, BUT I would also let Pirate Legends find a secret spot and play the PL shanty to spawn a "Legendary" pedestal, for one last upgrade. At this point, you've been at this fort for a while (or stolen it from someone who has), so I think it would be fair to spawn two chests of legends inside the vault.

PROS : * Skull Forts now let player choose the intensity of their adventre on the fort, depending on their skills, supplies and confidence.

  • Stealing a fort from a crew and getting a fort stolen generates interesting gameplay, and this enables this interaction for a longer time with varying stakes.

  • Creates an alternate, productive activity for Pirate Legends who wish to take a break from Athena's voyages.

  • Tying the upgrade mechanic to a pedestal bursting out of the ground is a flexible way to implement this on every fort regardless of layout.

  • If Skull Forts voyages are to ever exist, this feature could be used in the generation of such voyages, to ask players to attain a certain level to achieve completion.

Read:  The definitive guide to solo strongholds!

CONS * Currently, all non-voyage loot spawns on island approach, so this may or may not require some rewrite.

  • A fine balance between upgrade levels must be found for the higher reward to actually be worth the higher risk.

  • Despite the flexibility, it may be production expensive to develop, implement and test the pedestal and skull cloud changes.

  • For better or worse, this creates an asymmetry between forts and cursed crews. Since a defeated crew immediately yields its loot, upgrading the crew's rewards would need to be done in a completely different way.


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