Sea of Thieves feature 2

Sea of Thieves Festival of Gifting Update is now available for download, full patch notes revealed

Microsoft and Rare have released a new major update for Sea of Thieves. According to the press release, Festival of Giving brings with it the Maiden Voyage, a new introductory adventure that’s a must-play for every pirate.

For those new to the game or in need of a refresher, it’s an ideal first experience and a ‘safe’ place to hone their skills. For more seasoned pirates, it’s a chance to check out an unexplored island hidden beyond the Devil’s Shroud, meet the Pirate Lord and unlock new Commendations and exclusive cosmetics.

Alongside the Maiden voyage, holiday hijinks are in full swing with Gift Seeker Voyages, offering a pretty penny for pirates who can track down and retrieve a shipment of gifts lost at sea. Players can speak to Stitcher Jim in any tavern to get started and earn valuable Doubloons for each lost gift delivered safely to the Masked Stranger at The Reaper’s Hideout.

Furthermore, Rare has introduced the Calendar of Giving, offering all players daily in-game incentives from December 13–24.

Last but not least, you can find below the complete changelog for this latest update.

Sea of Thieves Festival of Gifting Patch Notes

Combat Balancing

The Festival of Giving update brings a range of improvements to sword combat, with the goal of removing potential exploits while creating a more fluid sword combat experience and better interplay between attacker and defender. To learn more about the reasons behind these changes, read this developer post by Sea of Thieves Design Director Mike Chapman.

  • Sword Miss Cooldown – When performing a sword strike and missing an opponent, the cooldown before the player can swing again has been reduced.
  • Sword Stunlock Removal – When successfully blocking a sword strike, you will no longer be stunned and unable to move. If you are hit and damaged by a sword strike, the stun duration has now been reduced. However, skeletons continue to be affected by stun from both blocked and damaging strikes as before.
  • Sword Wield Timing – When wielding a sword, the player now has a brief delay before being able to strike. Revised animations have been added to better identify when the sword has reached its idle state and allow the player to strike.
  • Directional Damage Indicator – When you are being attacked, the damage effect around the screen now identifies the direction in which the damage came from.
  • Sword Trails – Wielding a cutlass and striking your foes once again uses a trail visual effect.


  • Portable Ammo Crates – Portable Ammo Crates can now be found washed up across the Sea of Thieves. These can hold 50 ammo and can be carried to the Ammo Chest found on your ship or on an island to restock the Ammo Crate’s supply.
  • Storm Lightning Balancing – The frequency of lightning strikes hitting players while inside a storm has been reduced, but wielding your cutlass will continue to increase the chances of being hit and any subsequent damage.
  • It Should Just Work? – Throwing up onto a fire will now extinguish it as expected!
  • Selling Collector’s Chests – All Collector’s Chests found across the world or discovered during Tall Tales can now be sold to the Gold Hoarders, Order of Souls or Merchant Alliance Trading Companies once they are empty. Crews are rewarded with gold and reputation for each chest cashed in!
  • Fire Visual Effects – Fire visual effects have been improved on HDR and high-spec machines.

Fixed Issues


  • Bow splashes should now play correctly when your ship is moving through the water.
  • Migrating to a server that contains a ship with a broken mast will now show the ship mast in the correct state.
  • The red Ashen Ship Cloud now has an appropriate red reflection on the sea below.
  • Resolved an issue causing player loadouts to become corrupted upon loading into the game and immediately purchasing an item, resulting in the next visit to the Ferry of the Damned (or game restart) resetting the loadout.
  • The ‘Allow Friends to Join Me’ setting no longer prevents the sending of invites. Instead it just prevents friends from joining your crew without an invite.
  • The glow from Cursed Cannonballs no longer lingers around the player when they stow the cannonball.
  • Tall Tales – ‘The Shroudbreaker’ – Resolved missing localisation for collecting pages from the Ancient Chest.
  • Tall Tales – ‘The Fate of the Morningstar’ – The Enchanted Lantern no longer takes on the player’s Flame of Fate colour.
  • Tall Tales – ‘Shores of Gold’ – Players returning to the Gold Hoarder’s Treasure Room while the cutscene is playing will now be able to experience the cutscene.
  • Resolved texture issues on the Wailing Barnacle Spyglass and Forsaken Ashes Wheel.
  • Vibrant Two-Tone Hair Dye has been returned to the Pirate Hideout Store.
  • Cancelling out of repairing the ship’s wheel or capstan no longer plays damage VFX/SFX.
  • Raising a dropped mast then lowering the sails will no longer cause the mast to clip through the ship.
  • Players will no longer become stuck if they pick up an item while casting the fishing rod.
  • Switching to a sword while aiming a gun now shows up correctly from the perspective of another player.
  • The Reaper’s Chest beam no longer persists for a couple of seconds where the chest was picked up.
  • Resolved animation issues with certain body types when performing the jump sit emote.
  • Fished items can now be placed inside the Collector’s Chest.
  • Shooting a Mermaid Statue with a blunderbuss now produces the correct sound effect.

Tall Tales – ‘The Seabound Soul’

  • Ambient skeletons can no longer spawn in the time between starting the Tale and the beginning of the cutscene.
  • Leaving the Ancient Tomb between opening the sarcophagus and taking the skull will no longer cause the tomb door to remain closed.

The Arena

  • Further reductions to wait times in the Glorious Sea Dog Tavern.
  • Crews are now able to score points up until the very end of the contest.
  • Crews are no longer able to hand in chests after the contest has ended.


  • Pets can no longer be placed in or retrieved from a cage when the cage is closed.

Fort of the Damned

  • The Fort of the Damned Vault door is now locked when migrating to a new server. If you migrate after opening the Fort of the Damned, the Vault stays open on your new server, allowing you to retrieve your rewards.


  • Attempting to stow a firebomb while charging a throw will now correctly stow the firebomb and not prevent players from switching weapons.
  • When throwing a firebomb, other players can no longer take it from you.
  • Smoke VFX will no longer always render in front of fire VFX when the fire is closer to the player.
  • Throwing a firebomb while held by a Kraken tentacle now works as intended.
  • Firebombs no longer cause a ship or Gunpowder Keg to ignite when exploding underwater.
  • Firebombs no longer set fire to players above water when exploding underwater.
  • Rum Crates, fauna and explosive barrels will now take damage if they are on the harpoon of a burning ship.
  • Self-dousing yourself now consistently plays splash VFX.
  • Players can no longer throw two firebombs in quick succession, causing other players to see two explosions.
  • The charring effect can now be applied to the mast on the Sloop.
  • Being set on fire no longer forces you to exit a barrel UI screen.