But while loot boxes will have plenty of headline news in 2018, so will Sea of Thieves, the cooperative-competitive pirate game by Rare. People have been waiting a long time to see this bad boy come out, and now that the release date looms over the horizon like the grinning Jolly Roger, some people are worried, rightfully so, that the game will be rife with the dreaded loot box, which would honestly be a fairly thematically consistent way of operating, considering a pirate's perchance for treasure chests.
All the same, design director Mike Chapman told PC Gamer that there was nothing to fear: their success won't rely on microtransactions, and there will never be loot crates in the game.
"What I will confirm is there are no microtransactions for launch. At all. Based on us continuing to build this game, we'll probably consider some form of microtransaction. What we will say is there will never be loot crates in Sea of Thieves."
He elaborated that saying that whatever microtransactions they choose to add to the game would be interesting, and, more importantly, entirely cosmetic. There would be absolutely no pay-to-win mechanics in the game. He also made it clear that whatever interesting way they chose to do it, it'll bring value to players - whatever that means.
...He also said this:
"There'll never be a form of gambling in Sea of Thieves, of any description.
Which, you know, I support in principle, but come on, no gambling at all? In a game about pirates and outlaws? That just doesn't sound right. Surely there can be at least a little, in-game gambling, right?
Pfft. Whatever. Sea of Thieves will set sail on March 20, and it looks to be a heck of a ride.