There were a lot of games shown off during Ubisoft presser, however, one of the most intriguing was a multiplayer based pirate game called Skull and Bones. Players can either play alone or join a crew of scoundrels who have to compete against another for valuable loot. The combat focuses around players controlling unique pirate ships that all have different strengths and weaknesses that can be exploited in battle.
Certain ships such as the frigate can take a lot and deal a ton of punishment, making them perfect for tanking attacks from your enemies. Players can also utilize a sharpshooter style of pirate ship that utilizes motors and accurate long range cannons. The team designed these ships around typical RPG archetypes to give them a sense of familiarity to those who pick up Skull and Bones. You can switch between ships mid-game to allow for interesting team compositions to give users and advantage.
The gameplay showcased gave players a glimpse into a PvP game type called Loot Hunt which tasks users with hunting for treasure on the high seas. The catch is you can steal it from each other by destroying your opponents ship and at the end of the round pirate hunters will chase down the team with the most loot. It’s clear that just rushing the enemy with your ships will almost never work, as strategy will certainly determine the outcome. Yet, you will need to make sure the wind is on your side so you can speed away
However, this shouldn’t come as a huge surprise since the team behind Skull and Bones worked on Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag which was well known for its innovative ship combat. Mechanics like boarding a damaged ship have been included, although these have been reduced to a cutscene.
In terms of setting, developer Ubisoft Singapore has chosen the Indian Ocean due to the unique ecosystem, gorgeous water, and powerful trade winds. There was also a brief glimpse of the Kraken at the end of the trailer, however, this beasts functionality was not described. Also, you can have your pirates sing shanties, because who doesn’t want to hear a jolly tune while they storm into battle?
If you are looking to set sail on the high seas then you’re going to have to wait sometime. Currently Skull and Bones is aiming for a 2018 fall release date. You can sign up for the beta here, but the timeframe for this is also very limited. Skull and Bones will be available on PC, Xbox One, and PlayStation 4.