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Sea of Thieves attracts two million players in first week

Rare's shared world pirate adventure also drives streaming and Xbox Live friendship figures

It's a strong start for Sea of Thieves as Xbox reveals the game has attracted more than two million players since the game arrived last week.

The game saw over one million people playing on launch day, and this has steadily doubled since last Tuesday's launch, according to Xbox.

It's important to note it's unclear how many copies of the game have actually been sold. Microsoft announced earlier this year that Sea of Thieves would be added to the Xbox Game Pass subscription service, as will all first-party titles that follow it, making it free to download for all subscribers. These users have no doubt been included in the total.

It was initially unclear whether Microsoft was including Game Pass users when it declared Sea of Thieves to be the fastest-selling first-party new Xbox IP since the Xbox One launched. However, Xbox's general manager for games marketing Aaron Greenberg confirmed to GamesIndustry.biz that this does not include the service's subscribers.

Even so, the platform holder's slate of new IP has been somewhat limited this generation, with Quantum Break and Sunset Overdrive the only major examples that spring to mind. The company also claims this is the best-selling Microsoft Studios first-party title on Windows 10 to date.

There were a few more statistical treasures in Xbox's announcement, including the fact that over 100,000 players have streamed Sea of Thieves since launch, with over 10 million hours watched. Given the wacky and organic nature of the gameplay, this will no doubt be core to the game's post-launch momentum.

Meanwhile, more than 500,000 users have become friends on Xbox Live and more than 400,000 have joined a club, underlining how important social functionality is to Sea of Thieves.

Xbox acknowledged the ongoing server issues and bugs, and promised to continue addressing them, with Rare studio head Craig Duncan adding: "The team... is working hard to tackle any player-impacting issues and this is our number one priority."

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James Batchelor avatar

James Batchelor


James Batchelor is Editor-in-Chief at GamesIndustry.biz. He is based in Essex and has been a B2B games journalist since 2006