If you’re interested in the new content that’ll be part of the full release, we thought we’d post up the details of what you can expect:
Rest of the Main Story
We’ve been asked pretty much since we first entered Early Access when more of the main story was coming, and we’ve really loved the speculation on where it’s going to go. Now, you can find out!
We’ve always planned a freeplay mode, because saving the world from a Lovecraftian tentacle beast can be hard work, and sometimes you just want to be a pirate.
However we didn’t feel like it should just be the game world with the main story removed. We wanted to add something unique to this mode, and that’s where the pirate base comes in. Tucked away in a distant corner of a new region is an old pirate kingdom that was destroyed by the Empire. If you can get there, and invest enough money to restore the 10 islands, you can rebuild it and reap the benefits.
Having your own pirate base not only gives you substantial discounts in your home port, but also has some effects across the rest of the world, such as scattering a bunch of floating outposts in new areas (these are in maps that you’ll need a welcome respite), as well as taking over coastal defences and sea forts you clear, providing covering fire on your enemies if you fight within their radius.
You don’t have to do any of this pirate base stuff – it is freeplay after all, but it’s a worthy long-term target for any potential pirate king!
The side-campaigns with their unique stories (and how they tie in with the main story) has been a really popular addition throughout Early Access, and Freeplay is no different. You play a Captain fed up with their lot in life and desperate to realise their youthful ambitions. This mode is set in the aftermath of the world-changing events in the main game, so while it’s set in a period of great strife you should be mindful of the odd spoiler…
When we launched into Early Access, 4 of the 15 regions had been unlocked.
Since then, each new region we’ve unveiled has lots of unique islands, events and gameplay modifiers.
We’ve now circled back round and populated those initial 4 regions with the same treatment, so they’re full of much greater variety and things to discover.
The opening region in particular has a new mechanic in nearly every map you go into, as well as lots of cool islands and events to reveal.
In total, there are over a hundred maps in the game, and we’ve hit our target of each one having at least one unique island and event. As the only artist on the team, I’m not sure how Alex has managed it. She’s certainly been an island-making-machine recently 🙂
The Final Region Unlocked
The Uncharted is our final region that we’re opening up. It’s full of weird and wonderful places and has a few interesting one-off map modifiers, such as the Lightning Storm, which hammers down lightning at an alarming rate, and stuns nearby crew if it hits their ship – which it will, a lot! You’ll also find a map of shallow waters, which stop movement in combat while you’re sailing through the rocky channels.
There’s 84 Achievements to try and get, and we’re very much looking forward to seeing what percentage of people accomplish certain ones…
There sure is…
– Polish! Bug-fixes! Balancing! A huge amount of all this is listed in our patch notes: https://steamcommunity.com/app/551860/discussions/9/1607148447831265463/
– Lifeboat and Stranded Mode Revamp! You can now choose between various destinations that you can try and make your way toward. It’ll also show you how long you’ll last and the chance of rescue in that spot. So now you can make some tough choices in this perilous situation: do you go for the closer rescue spot with a lower chance of rescue, or head to the distant port and it’s guaranteed salvation? Events will happen along the way as usual – including random rescue chances. Where you lose your ship is also important – sink next to a port and you’ll likely survive. Find yourself in the middle of nowhere and it’ll be tougher going.
– New Ships! We’ve got seven new ship variants. Once you’ve captured them you can switch over to that variant in the Journal.
– Female Captain! The extremely talented Amelia Tyler (fans of Divinity may recognise her as the voice of Malady among many other game roles) has given life to our female captain. Just select the female option on the captain creation screen to hear her commanding “BRACE FOR IMPACT!”
– Tutorial Log! Okay, that’s not really very exciting, but it is important, especially if you need a recap on useful information. You’ll find that in the Journal.
Thanks for all the support, the game wouldn’t be the same without you.
Gary, Adam and Alex