|Location||The Glorious Sea Dog Tavern|
- 1 Summary
- 2 Elements
- 3 Point System
- 4 Rewards
- 5 Teams
- 6 Tactics
- 6.1 Roles and Communication
- 6.2 The Start of the Battle
- 6.3 Ship Tactics
- 6.4 Other Tactics
- 7 Trivia
- 8 Gallery of Tips from the Tavern
- 9 Videos
Summary[edit | edit source]
Every Arena game begins and ends inside The Glorious Sea Dog Tavern lobby, where players can interact with various vendors and objects, communicate with each other and access various Sea Dog Representatives. Once in game, up to five Crews compete for Silver and Sea Dog Chests that are hidden on Islands within one of the main Regions of The Sea of Thieves. The location of the Chests are marked on Treasure Maps shared by all crews. Two stationary Sea Dog outposts are placed on each map that house Sea Dog Agents who accept these Chests for additional Silver points. Once all the provided maps have been expended, all crews are given another set of maps. The crew that earns the most Silver in the 24 minute matchup wins. Pirates score Silver for various actions, such as digging and cashing in Sea Dog Chests or battling other players and ships. Silver is a currency only applicable in Arena matches. The reward for placements is awarded in set amounts of Gold and Reputation with the Sea Dogs.
Elements[edit | edit source]
- Players join into The Glorious Sea Dog Tavern that acts a lobby for the Arena matches.
- Players can choose to compete in two man Crews (Duo Sloop Arena) or 3-4 man Crews (Galleon Arena).
- Each arena game lasts for 24 minutes.
- Up to 5 Crewed ships can appear in one matchup.
- The arena map is a small circular cut-out of one of the three main regions.
- Every ship is marked on the map with their designated team colours at all times as if they were in an alliance.
- Every ship spawns with their Anchor down and Sails up.
- Each ship has a set amount of Planks, Cannonballs and Food on board. Unlike Adventure Mode, Arena ships spawn with Coconuts instead of Bananas, however other Food items are obtainable on Islands.
- Every crew gets the same Treasure Maps with up to 25 X-marks-the-spots on a single map.
- Sea Dog Chests take only 3 Shovel hits to dig up.
- Every Arena map has two Chest turn-in Outposts marked by red smoke pillars. These are essentially floating Galleons with two Sea Dog Agents on each post.
- Instead of being sent to the Ferry of the Damned, dead pirates will float above their corpse until they re-spawn, giving them a chance to keep an eye on their surroundings even after death.
- Most all Ship and Close Combat mechanics from Adventure Mode apply to Arena matches.
- The following elements from Adventure Mode are cut from Arena: Skeletons (aside from Ancient Skeletons, Gunpowder Barrels, Cursed Cannonballs, Rowboats, mixed Ship types.
- It is possible to Scuttle one's Ship in Arena, making it possible to easily get out of sticky situations for the Silver cost of sinking.
- Pets can be taken to the Arena Game Mode.
Point System[edit | edit source]
The match is won by the Crew that earns the most Silver during a single match. Silver as a currency is only tied to single Arena matches and cannot be used to purchase items nor converted into Gold.
|Digging up Sea Dog Chest|
|Cashing in Sea Dog Chest|
Rewards[edit | edit source]
|Placement||Amount of Points|
Teams[edit | edit source]
Tactics[edit | edit source]
Due to the open nature of the Arena battles, there are various ways to secure your victory over other teams. Here are some common and less common tactics:
Roles and Communication[edit | edit source]
Apart from getting chests and securing as much silver as possible, the most important thing in Arena matches is Communication! If every teammate is able to communicate everything they do and see, then your team will already have a great advantage over other ships that don't. This is more difficult to achieve in Open Crews, making a prepared Closed Crew much more effective. Before the match starts, it is commonplace to agree upon set Roles for each crewmate. The most common role division is to have two people on deck and two people ready off-deck on a Galleon, with one on and one off on a Sloop. Note that the best teams are capable of filling up any of these roles and switching on the fly depending on the circumstances. The main agreed upon roles are listed below. Note that the 4 man role separation works best in a Galleon match. In a Duo Sloop setting be prepared to apply these roles between the two of you and change accordingly.
Captain/Helmsman[edit | edit source]
The Helmsman will take control of the ship and give out sailing, maintenance and battle commands to the rest of the crew. The Helmsman should stay on the ship at all times if possible and make sure the ship and sails are positioned correctly. The main role of the Helmsman is to sail the Ship and handle the Wheel. The Helmsman should have a good understanding on how to maneuver each ship type, how to read the Map Table, the position of the wind and everything that the enemy players are doing. At the start of the fight, it is best for the Helmsman to run to the Map Table, check the current maps and prepare a strategy for the current match (although this can be delegated to any player who feels comfortable with this task and is furthest away from the Anchor). The Helmsman should take note of enemy ship placements, movements and presumed intentions and be ready to act accordingly. This means that they ideally need to pay attention to the buried Chests on each Map, where the enemy crews are, what and where they have found chests at and how they may play with their given hand. A good Helmsman will always call out the required sail positioning and angle, Harpoon handling, when to board and when to go to the Island, when to attack and where, when to handle repairs, and of course, when to come back to the ship. This makes it the most difficult role by far, but if done right, will secure the team a great advantage over other, more unorganised crews.
An expert Helmsman will be capable of sailing a Galleon alone, leaving up to three people to handle everything else.
This role should definitely be present on a Duo Sloop Crew as well. It is advised not to leave your Ship unattended unless enemy Crews are very far away.
Deckhand[edit | edit source]
The Deckhand is responsible for general Ship maintenance. The Deckhand may often be disregarded, as it is perceived to require less technical skill, however a good Deckhand is the key to having your ship surviving the toughest odds. Since the Helmsman is mostly handling the Wheel for maneuvering, any Deckhands should help them handle the Sails, deal with Repairs, prepare and use Cannons, work the Harpoon, check ladders and the Ship for potential Boarders, etc. Repair duty is one of the most important things when under attack, because most Ships sink due to carelessness with repairs. A Deckhand should call out for aid with bailing and report the water level to the Crew. The main skills a deckhand should focus on mastering are effective handling of the Harpoon and Sails, Cannonfire and most importantly, Close Combat. It is often the Deckhand and not the Close Combat oriented Boarder who will have to deal with any enemy Boarders. Essentially, the Deckhand should be a jack of all trades.
An expert Deckhand can perform Ship maintenance with the Helmsman by essentially "reading their minds" and working Sails, Cannons, Guarding duty and Harpoon maneuvers on the fly.
Since a Sloop can essentially be sailed alone, then the Deckhand role can be performed by the Helmsman or anyone on the Ship.
Boarder[edit | edit source]
The Boarder's objective is to master both Ship and Close Combat, because they will spend most of their time off the ship, battling and hindering other Crews from getting ahead. A good boarder understands how Cannon and Ship positioning works as they will need to judge the distances and speeds of other ships to be able to board them safely. If a Ship is in firing distance, a boarder should attempt to either aim themselves on a Ship or in front of one with the Cannon to land a boarding. If a ship is behind or ahead, the boarder will need to either jump or sword lunge themselves onto the other ship. Once on board the enemy Ship, a Boarder should focus on lowering their Anchor immediately and killing anyone who is trying to either catch or raise the Capstan. A lowered anchor makes a ship a sitting duck, allowing for the rest of your crew to catch up and apply more pressure by maneuvering around the sitting duck. Boarders can also focus on guarding the cannonball holes on lower decks to prevent the other crew from repairing their ship. With the exception of Food, Boarders should also empty their Inventory to steal Supplies from enemy Ships. Boarders should also generally focus on stealing the Sea Dog Chests of other crews. If a boarder notices Chests on board of other ships, they can try and throw them overboard or hide them in different spots to slow the enemy Crew's progress. Boarders can also stay low on Sea Dog Outposts in wait of any crews trying to turn in their Chest, attempt to kill them and cash their Chests in themselves.
An expert Boarder has mastered Close Combat with all Weapon types, keeping enemy numbers low, while being prepared to run away or jump around to avoid damage from any active Combatants.
In a Sloop Crew, one player should deal with off-ship Roles like Boarding, while the other player maneuvers the Ship. It is generally not a good idea to leave the Sloop alone and both head off the ship.
Treasure Hunter[edit | edit source]
The fourth main role is generally more open. The Treasure Hunter can generally help out with filling any other role, but their main focus should be to focus on digging up Sea Dog Chests hidden on the Islands. The Treasure Hunter should acquaint themselves with Compass directions, spatial awareness of Treasure Maps in finding the Chests and Combat prowess for defending the said Chests or trying to prevent anyone else from scoring points. A Treasure Hunter should focus on either cannoning or dropping themselves off on marked islands and finding all the Sea Dog Chests buried underground. A good Treasure Hunter should also be capable of defending their Chests or keeping other Crews from digging up any more Chests on Islands. They should have a knack for good Treasure hiding spots and remembering their locations, as well as calling out these hiding locations or directions of where the Chests are placed on the Island for the other Crew members to pick up. It is often recommended for any Treasure Hunter to tap the Chests first and remember their locations to make them disappear from the Maps, as this will prevent enemy Crews from seeing the number of Chests or their placement on the maps. A valid Treasure Hunter tactic is to keep an eye on where the enemy Crews are digging, pay attention to their actions to find their hiding spot and steal the Chests or hide them in different places. When there is no treasure to dig up, the Treasure Hunter should focus on helping out their crew with either battling or boarding other ships, maintaining their own ship or helping to turn in chests.
An expert Treasure Hunter knows Islands and Treasure Maps inside out and can manage digging chests and getting them aboard as quick as possible. While Arena is considered a PvP Game Mode, it is actually quick and painless Chest retrieval that wins matches.
In a Sloop Crew, this role can be fulfilled by any player off the Ship.
The Start of the Battle[edit | edit source]
It is of utmost importance to get your Anchor up and your Sails down as soon as the match starts. The Ships that get on the move the earliest also have the best advantage on the Seas. There is not much of a difference between three and four people on the Capstan on a Galleon (one player can raise the Anchor very quickly on a Sloop), so one of the crew members (preferably the main strategist of the Crew) should focus on checking the current Treasure Maps and plotting out a course and general strategy for the match. Make sure that everyone has the correct Weapons and full Supplies before heading out into any Combat scenarios. If another crew that spawns close takes their time to get moving, it is possible to have one of your boarders Cannon over to stop the adjacent ships from getting far or simply steal their Supplies.
The second most important part of the start of an Arena match is to determine a Strategy for the start of the match. Make sure your Crew knows which Islands the Sea Dog Chests are buried on and how far or close your Ship is positioned relative to other competitors. Take a look at the Other Crews menu to see how many players other teams have and try to remember from the Lobby if some of these names were tied to any experienced Cosmetics or Titles. This information should give you enough time to prepare a strategy. The best spawn is close to an Island with the most Chests and no competitors. If this is the case and if your crew is quick to get sailing, you will have some Chests on board and turned in before anyone else can even get close to any Islands.
If you are further away from the Treasure Islands than other ships and get there last, then you have a few options. You can either plan on taking down any Ships already busy on the Island and contest them, or plan to cut off their escape towards other Islands or turn-in points. The ships who get to an Island first are mostly busy with the Chests or contesting the island and are more than likely not set to sail quickly, so they make for easy targets. Be careful with your approach however. If the other Crew hasn't lowered their anchor and has all Pirates on board, then they may very well sink you before you get in Cannon range yourself. If the Island in question doesn't have many Chests and you feel like staying on the one Island will eat up many precious minutes, then you could also try to drop off a Player or two, have them quickly tap the Chests and get new maps. Alternatively you can sail to the middle of the map, wait for other crews to dig up all the Chests and hope for better spawns then. If this opens up the game then you will have more options at your disposal.
Try to pin down which Crews may pose the biggest threat already in the Lobby and track their position on the Map. Often times, it is wiser to not confront stronger teams head-on, but rather play around them and focus on the Islands that don't get their attention.
Ship Tactics[edit | edit source]
Capstan Tactics[edit | edit source]
As mentioned in the previous section, you want to raise your Capstan as quick as possible to get ahead on other players. Generally, you never want your Anchor to be dropped in Arena as it will make you an easy target for other Ships. Conversely, this means that when engaging other ships you will want to target their Anchor first to stop their ship from maneuvering. This can be done by sending a Boarder over to their ship to drop it for them and keep their crew from raising it. There are some situations where you can let your Anchor drop, but you must make sure there are no Ships even remotely close enough to take advantage of your inability to move. One of these situations would be when you need to turn your ship around quickly in open seas with an Anchor turn. For this, you need the Helmsman to turn the Wheel completely to the desired direction and have the teammates drop the Anchor while the ship is moving. You must communicate this, as an Anchor turn is only as effective as the number of people willing to pull it up again. Anchoring is also an option if you need to make a quick stop at a Sea Dog turn-in Outpost and cannot raise the Sails in time or if you have little time left in the match. Again, you need to be wary of other sSips using your lack of mobility against you. If you are alone on an Island and your ship is still moving despite all sails being up, you can also hit the Anchor and pull it up to stop the ship, but make sure you are in safe waters and that your Sails are fully up. At all other times, it is not advisable to drop an Anchor in an Arena match. You must also be attentive and ready to defend your Anchor from enemy Boarders. Instead of anchoring, you should pull up your Sails to stop the ship from moving as you can set sail by simply lowering the Sails and not have to deal with raising the Capstan first. Try to have at least three repaired or healthy Anchor pins on a Galleon for quick Anchor raising. Another tactic for Anchors is to prime them. once you raise or let go of an Anchor, you can catch it and manually lower or raise it bit by bit. This is called Anchor priming or preparing the Anchor and can be useful when coming close to a destination where a quick and precise stop is required.
In Duo Sloop Arena, if you kill both of the enemy Crew members quickly, you should have enough time to raise their Anchor and sail them into Rocks or Islands or simply away from your ship before they come back.
Sail Tactics[edit | edit source]
After raising the Anchor, getting your Sails down and angled correctly is your second priority at the start of a match. You should ideally have at least two people on board to manage Sails in a Galleon Crew, as it is significantly slower to do alone. Two people raising or angling the same Sail will more than double the speed of the action. To get the most speed out of your ship, you will want to angle the Sails into the Wind at all times. If you are sailing into the direction of the Wind, it is advisable to go for "Dummy Sails", that is, having your sails straight into the wind, as it will cut directly through the waves and improve your speed by a little bit. If you can spare some speed, it is also advisable to not lower the middle sail all the way, so that the Helmsman can see ahead of the ship. You will need to practice the timing of raising Sails before you get to a destination. When you close to your destination and want to slow down, you will want to raise the middle sail first (advisably with two people) as this counts for the most speed due to its size. Generally the front or back sail will be raised right after and one or the other will be left down for maneuvering until stopping and also raising the last sail. In most cases, the Helmsman will order the raising of the Front Sail before the Back Sail, dealing with the latter themselves. However the Front Sail can be left last instead if you need to move the ship for Harpoon play, because the front sail is closer to the Harpoons. Be mindful that the Masts can be broken down by 3 direct Cannonball hits. If you see cracks in the masts, you should repair them with Wooden Planks. When in Ship Combat, try to aim for the Sails as you can greatly inhibit an enemy ships movement by breaking their sails. A broken Mast needs to be pulled up (this can be sped up with two people). This action will also pull up the sailcloth so you need to lower it again after fixing the mast. Many players like to prepare "Combat Sails" for Ship to Ship combat between Galleons, which is either the Front or Back Sail fully lowered and the other half-raised. This placement offers the best maneuvering conditions for a Galleon. If a Boarder has time and an enemy Ship is unanchored, they can lower the Sails to make their Ship speed away or sail straight into an Island.
Helm Tactics[edit | edit source]
The Helm (or Wheel) is both the most necessary and often the most difficult part of the ship to take control of in a Galleon Arena match. The job of the Helmsman can be greatly improved by having a designated Deckhand on board of the ship to help the Helmsman with the Sails, Cannons, Repairs, Capstan and Harpoon while the Helmsman can focus on steering the Ship and giving out commands. Without a deckhand, the Ship's maneuverability will suffer greatly as the Helmsman will have to do the job of two people alone. Ideally it is best to have the Helmsman on the Wheel at most times, so that they can position the ship while the rest of the crew is dealing with the Sails and the rest of the ship. Also, be mindful that when going through Storms, having one player holding the Wheel steady is an absolute necessity unless you are willing to risk lowering your Anchor. Taking on any ships in a Storm that are not prepared to steady their Ship will give you a massive advantage. None of these are as much of an issue on a Sloop as it is fairly easy to maneuver and sail Solo. Be mindful that the Wheel can also sustain damage from Cannonballs, making it harder to turn the ship if left unrepaired. Aiming for the enemy ship's Wheel should not be the primary objective, but can help to hinder their ability to turn the ship.
Harpoon Tactics[edit | edit source]
The Harpoon is something you want to master as soon as possible for Arena, as it is a very powerful tool for mobility, Chest and Crew-mate retrieval. The Harpoon can be tricky to aim because it shoots high. You can predict the destination of the Harpoon by imagining a cross-hair at the exact middle of your screen. With enough practice, you will start to gauge the exact spot where the Harpoon will hit. Luckily, Sea Dog Chests are large and easy to grab, but wave and ship movement can still make harpooning difficult, so be sure to get some practice in!
If your teammates dig up any Chests on an island, it's good to have the Ship docked nearby on the island, so that your Treasure Hunters can leave the Chests on the shores to be picked up with the Harpoon by Deckhands. You can also retrieve your teammates and even enemy Pirates with the Harpoon. If your teammate is bringing the last Chest to your ship, you can tell them to turn their back to the Harpoon, instead of facing it, so you can pick up both them and the Chest in their hand at once.
Harpoons are also very good at precise maneuvering of your ship. When you are close to Islands or larger sea structures like Rock formations, you can essentially perform an Anchor Turn without dropping the Anchor by having the Helmsman turn the Wheel to the desired side and having a Deckhand pull the ship around the corner by harpooning any solid surface structure. You can also utilize the Harpoon to pull your ship closer to an Island or away from it. The surrounding area of all Islands has shallow water, so you can also use the Harpoon to turn your ship around quicker by having one of your Deckhands shoot the ground with the Harpoon and pull you to the desired side.
A good method for turning in Chests is to have a Crewmate take one Chest in and position themselves to be Harpooned in to quickly grab another Chest. This should save you valuable time and also prevents Enemy Pirates from picking up leftover Chests from the water or Outpost and turning them in for themselves.
The Harpoon is also valuable at keeping up with other ships or positioning your ship around them. Try to grab moving Ships with your harpoon to catch up speed or pull yourself closer. The Harpoon has to be pulled in constantly to get closure, because a slack Harpoon will easily disconnect with its target. Interestingly, an anchored Ship harpooned to a sailing Ship will pull the other ship behind with you, effectively also anchoring them. Watch out when harpooning, as anyone sitting on a Harpoon is an easy target for cannons or firearms. A Harpoon latch can be disconnected by damaging it with any Weapon by any player. If your Ship is Harpooned, try to shoot at it for it to let go.
Ship Combat[edit | edit source]
Ship to Ship Combat is more streamlined in the Arena game mode, as you have neither Cursed Cannonballs nor Gunpowder Barrels, so you have to rely on careful maneuvering, Boarding and Cannon fire. When approached by enemy ships, or when approaching one yourself, try to position your Ship with your sides either in front or behind their ship. This is fairly easy to achieve if the enemy ship is Anchored so try to get your Boarder on their ship, ready to lower the Anchor and guard the enemy team from picking it up or raising it. If you can get all four crew-mates on each Cannon to aim at and barrage a ship at range, then you are more than likely to sink the enemy ship. This is an ideal scenario though. In real Arena fights, you will have to guard yourself from enemy Cannon fire, have someone on Repairs and lose Deckhands to Boarders or boarding. Nonetheless, try to have at least two people on Cannons for maximum efficiency. If you are close to an enemy Ship, but do not have the necessary mobility to get to the right angle, have one of your crew-mates grab the opposing ship with a Harpoon. The Harpoon is ideal for pulling your ship out of the enemy Ship's Cannon range or into your own, to keep up in speed with their ship or to simply stop them from moving.
On open seas you have to take the wind position to account and manage your Sails accordingly. Since all Ships share their typing in Arena matches, your maneuverability is equal, but correctly angled Sails can make just the right difference to get away from, or catch up with a less-skilled enemy crew.
Also note that if you want to guard Sea Dog Chest turn-in points, it is more advantageous for you to wait for your target to approach you, than it is for you to sail toward them, as they can easily pass you by, losing you the game.
If you are being chased by an enemy Ship and want to lose them, try to get your Boarders on their Ship unnoticed and have them Anchor that Ship, or simply keep the crew busy and away from managing their Ship.
A good crew will always keep an eye out for Mermaids and swimming sounds to spot Boarders and guard their ladders. Make sure you do this as well! Keeping an eye out for Boarders and guarding your ladders should be a top priority as a successful Boarder can easily cost you the game.
The Helmsman and Boarder should communicate ship positioning as sometimes you might need an angle ahead of the enemy ship, so your Boarder can try to Cannon themselves off and catch the moving ship's ladder.
Cannon Tactics[edit | edit source]
When it comes to Cannon fire there are three different spots you want to aim for depending on the situation. A good Helmsman will know how to call out the right spot:
- If you want to sink a ship, you will have to aim below deck. The more (and the larger) holes the enemy ship has at different spots below deck, the faster they will go down. For maximum damage, spread out your shots at different parts of the hull, so that the repair crew has more holes to fix. You can also periodically keep hitting the same spot to keep the enemy crew from patching up that one hole and potentially even try to kill them while doing so.
- If you want to hinder a ship's activities, you want to aim top deck. While aiming top-deck does not make a sink ship, you will want to keep their crew away from all the important areas. If you see an enemy pirate going for their cannons, aim at the cannons and see if you can shoot them off or kill them before they get any hits on you. If you want to stop a ship from moving, you will have to prioritise aiming towards their Capstan and staircase. You keep enemies from raising their anchor by aiming at this area, the Capstan loses up to three pins, making it harder to raise once lowered. This area is also good to aim at to cover your boarders with cannon fire and to keep the enemy team from moving up or down their top and mid deck. If you want to go the extra mile, you can also aim for the enemy ship's sails and wheel. Each sail takes three hits to be toppled. The wheel can also take up to three hits to keep the enemy ship from turning.
- Your last priority should be to fire the mid-deck of a ship, however there are some advantages to this. Of course, the more holes the enemy ships has on their mid-deck, the faster they will sink after filling up to second level. You can also aim at the ladder area to keep enemy pirates from climbing back on their ship or to cover your own Boarders. The last option is to simply farm points, by hitting a ship mid-deck.
Remember that each Cannonball that hits an enemy ship is worth +25 Silver, so make your shots count. Every Cannonball that misses the target is potential 25 points lost, so try to avoid taking pot-shots at Ships if you are not sure that you can hit them. This fact is also lost to many players as sometimes, simply stopping your ship next to an idle or anchored ship and emptying all your cannonballs at their ship can get you enough points to win a game. You have 180 Cannonballs on a freshly spawned Ship. If you hit every single one of those cannonballs, you can get 4500 points. A clever Helmsman can position your ship either right next to an opponent's ship, or just out of range and have the crew offload their cannons on the top deck so that the opposing ship won't sink.
When it comes to launching people from Cannons, you can have one player aim the other to help them land a shot more precisely.
If you feel like your Cannon fire isn't as up to snuff as you'd like, you can practice the firing arc, angles and movement in Adventure mode by trying to hit adjacent islands or rocks when at sea.
Supply Management[edit | edit source]
You have plenty of Supplies on board of your ship. Each Arena Galleon is packed with 180 Cannonballs (60 in each Barrel), 60 Wooden Planks and 80 Coconuts (40 in each Barrel) and a limitless Ammo Chest, so make sure you have your pockets full and your weapons loaded before getting into any fights. It is good to call out a reminder to get Supplies right after you get your anchor up and the sails down. If boarders are confident enough, they can try to board other ships to steal their supplies. A good time to do this would be right at the beginning of a game if adjacent ships are slow enough to get their anchor up. The Barrels that spawn on islands have the same contents as Adventure Mode Barrels (with the exception of Cursed Cannonballs), so you can stock up on better Fruit and even Bait when looking for Chests. Be mindful that Sea Dog Chest turn-in points have no Supply Barrels of any kind, but they do have Cannons on each side so it is advisable to take Cannonballs with you if you can line up a shot from them. It is also advisable to familiarise yourself with the placements of the Ammo Chests on Islands and Forts.
When it comes to Food, it is also possible to catch Fish and kill Animals or Sharks for their meat and cook it on Stoves on your ship or islands. While this is time consuming, it is a valid tactic when you have nothing else to do while sailing as this will give your close combatants the valuable boost of health regeneration. This should not be considered as a tactic for every game, as there is rarely time for getting meat in Arena games, only do this if you know you have enough time to kill.
As a side-note, it is also possible to get different kind of Bait from Barrels on Islands. Bait is quite useless in Arena when it comes to catching fish, as none of the different fish types provide any additional health benefits. It is, however, possible to eat bait to make your pirate sick. If you can manage to aim this at a Bucket or an enemy pirate, you will have an additional diversionary tactic against foes at Close Combat. Other than that, Bait heals for 10% health and you can have 10 of it in hand (with additional 1 on the Fishing Rod), so if you don't mind the puking, then use it as extra food!
Other Tactics[edit | edit source]
Close Combat[edit | edit source]
Despite what some Arena players think, Close Combat is actually secondary in the Arena. Close Combat alone will not win you Arena matches, however good PvP skills definitely help in slowing down enemy Crews or defending yours. This is reflected by the measly +5 Silver that you get from killing an enemy player. Therefore, if you want to win you should not focus your game plan on simple PvP on board of ships, killing the spawning infinitely (although is is a valid tactic for hindering any real competition). Close Combat should be approached more creatively in an Arena game, as should your choice of Weapons.
The main situations where Close Combat is favoured is either when you board or get boarded, or when you need to defend a Sea Dog Chest or kill someone digging one up or turning one in. You might also want to leave a Boarder on a turn-in Seapost to catch approaching ships with chests off-guard. This way, your team might be able to steal the chests from their hands and turn it in right there. Despite Boarders doing all the heavy lifting in Close Combat, it is advisable to get practice in this form of PvP regardless of your role, as you will have to defend your own ship or chests from enemy boarders no matter who you play as.
Many pirates swear on the Cutlass as a mainstay of their arsenal. This is due to the increased mobility it offers (Sword lunges can get you off ships, on ships, away from trouble and even kills) and the way how a sword combo stuns the enemy player from taking action if caught in it. If you are favouring a Cutlass, make sure to learn how to block and dodge as well. Generally, Pistols, Eye of Reach and the Blunderbuss are used as secondary weapons, but it is also possible to fight effectively with two guns. For example, you can kill an enemy pirate if you can land both an eye of reach and pistol shot in succession. These firearms are especially good underwater if the enemy is carrying a Cutlass as you can pin them down before they can ever reach you. However, be mindful of your ammo count and refill at the Ammo Chests on ships or islands. The Blunderbuss is a good option for boarding as a full blast from close range can either kill a pirate or knock them back (preferably off their own ship!).
Sea Dog Chests[edit | edit source]
Last, but not least, we get to the main objective of the Arena game-mode: The Sea Dog Chests! These chests will currently earn you a 1000 Silver, meaning that each chest that you turn in, is worth as much as 40 Cannonball hits or effectively a single sinking of your ship. Every crew should prioritise getting as many of these as possible and keeping the other crews from digging up or turning in any of their own. This means that you will have to pay careful attention to the title cards that tell you which team discovered a chest and where their ship or crew-mates are situated. Paying attention to this information, will determine the strategy of your match.
Remember that every competitor in an Arena match has the same Treasure Maps with the same chests. If you can keep an eye on which chests are dug up and where, you can also assume where enemy pirates are located, or where they might hide their chests.
If your ship is in proximity to other contestants or if the Island you are digging on is contested, or far away, then you will want your Treasure Hunters to try and hide the chests for safekeeping. Hiding chests is both a good tactic to keep your chests safe and a way to stop your enemies from cashing in any chests of their own. If you manage to kill an enemy player with a chest and hide the chest from them, then they will have to spend all that extra time to find it. Getting acquainted with any popular hiding spots is also a good skill to have for any Treasure Seeker so that you may be able to find any chests hidden by other players.
A good tactic for a match would be to leave a player on a less profitable island that you are passing by for a more profitable one. You can have your crew-mates cannon or swim off to the island, dig up the chests, hide them and save them for later as a safety net. When enemy teams are inattentive, they will forget about the islands as soon as new maps appear and you can safely return there later for extra points.
There are many places to hide Sea Dog Chests on your ship, so get creative. You do not want Boarders to have an easy time of finding a chest and jumping or dropping off with one. The most popular hiding spots are right behind the Harpoons, between Cannons, in the Captain's Quarters (expert players can even get the chests to stay on top of the door or on the cosmetic shelves!), below deck and on the balconies.
When turning in Sea Dog Chests, consider if there might be any castaway players on the Turn-in point. If the possibility is there, have a player check the seapost for any enemies before you start offloading your chests.
Time Management[edit | edit source]
Every Arena match lasts for 24 minutes. You will be notified of remaining time in the match-up after every quarter. While generally 24 minutes is just enough for one Arena match, it is during the last minutes when you might have to pay close attention to how much time is left in the match. Try to accustom yourself with how long it takes you to dig up chests at an island, how long it takes to sail from one place to another and how long does it take for your team to turn in chests. These are all important factors in the late game as you might have to switch up your strategy on the fly depending on your circumstances. For example, if you get new maps, but only have around 1-6 minutes left in the match-up, consider whether going for these chests is a good time and point investment. You might be able to gain much more points by focusing yourself on another ship with chests or simply by impeding other crews from turning in their own chests when you have the lead. It is of utmost importance for the Helmsman or Captain to acquaint themselves with the time dynamics of an Arena game as the time left in a match is one of the more important pieces of information you have in your command.
Scuttling or sinking the Ship[edit | edit source]
Scuttling or having your ship purposefully sink in an Arena match is a controversial tactic as it will lose you 1000 points, but there are some situations where it might be advantageous. If you get a bad spawn in a match, your crew could gamble with scuttling a ship and hoping to get a better spawn. As you have no points at the beginning of a match, this move will only cost your crew one or two minutes, but be ready to raise your anchor again. If you are far ahead in points (we are talking approximately +2000 points ahead), then you can also allow your ship to sink if you want to get away from the clutches of an enemy ship or a chaotic situation and get a fresh spawn. Remember, since every enemy cannonball hit gives them +25 points, you can sometimes save yourself from a situation where the enemy team can simply get ahead by getting stuck on your ship and not letting you sink. Scuttling can also help you to replenish your ships supply for the cost of 1000 points. If you are running low, but still ahead in the competition, you can consider sacrificing your ship by ramming it in a destination or enemy ship and going full close combat.
Trivia[edit | edit source]
- While it is not possible to take damage or die in the Arena lobby, you will still get the fall damage screen notification when dropping down from heights.
- Many of the features shown in the The Arena trailer did not make it into the game mode, such as Explosive Barrels, The Devil's Roar nor Captain's Chests.
- The Barrels on islands contain the same loot table as Adventure mode (with the exception of Cursed Cannonballs, making it possible to get Bait for catching different fish, despite different types of fish not providing any sort of advantage in the game mode. Bait does however make the player vomit.
- It is possible to fish up Treacherous Plunder and Wooden Planks in the Arena, however the former cannot be turned in.
- The Regal Hound was first called The Midnight Prowl.
- With the addition of Pirate Emporium, Ancient Skeletons can be encountered in the Arena Game Mode as well.