It appears that Sea of Thieves has had a surge in popularity

It appears that Sea of Thieves has had a surge in popularity

It would seem that Rare and Microsoft's pirate-em-up title Sea of Thieves has had something a resurgence.

While it's impossible to get sales data from the game due to it being on the closed Microsoft platform, we can see on various streaming data sites such as Twitchmetrics and SullyGnome - as spotted by PCGamesN - which clock Sea of Thieves as the tenth and eleventh most watched games on Twitch at the time of writing.

The former reckons that Rare's online title has had an average of 22,385 viewers this month, with a peak viewership of 128,384 people. On average, there are 390 channels live and playing Sea of Thieves, making it the 19th most streaming game.

It's not just *that* it's being streamed by a huge number of personalities, but *who* is playing it. Big names include Ninja and DrDisrespect, both of whom have accumulated huge audiences through games like Fortnite, Playerunknown's Battlegrounds and Call of Duty: Black Ops IIII.

Sea of Thieves charts behind the like of Fortnite, LoL, Dota 2 and Playerunknown's Battlegrounds, to the surprise of no-one. Many of these games are service-based affairs who have absurdly long tails, so that'll be hard nut to crack. That being said, Playerunknown's Battlegrounds smashed its way through several Valve-made service-based titles like Dota 2 and Counter-Strike: GO to make it to the No.1 concurrent player spot on Steam, so anything really is possible.

In a video diary released earlier this week, Sea of Thieves executive producer Joe Neate said that "pretty much everything" was up for the game - not just streaming figures

"It's been amazing to see the continued momentum and interest around Sea of Thieves since the Shrouded Spoils release," he said.

"Throughout December we have seen loads of streaming, loads of stories and just loads of people coming in and playing Sea of Thieves. To see that continue through January, to see new players coming in, new streamers, just new awareness about the whole game has been incredible. When I look at all our metrics internally to see pretty much everything taking an uptick, whether that's monthly active users or the streaming numbers or even just our sales and our Game Pass, we're seeing really great growth across all of these areas. It's a really amazing start to the year and we have great momentum coming from Shrouded Spoils release."

Sea of Thieves launched in March 2018 and within a week Microsoft boasted that the game had two million players. By August, four million players had taken to the high seas

However, these figures include users from Xbox's Game Pass scheme, meaning that we don't actually have much of an idea how much money the game is making or even how many monthly active users it has. 

Rare opened up about some of these vital stats in early August 2018, but much still isn't known about the game's health. This is a big issue that the industry and media are going to have to deal with in the coming years as subscription services like Game Pass and EA's own Origin Access become more prevalent

PCGamesInsider Contributing Editor

Alex Calvin is a freelance journalist who writes about the business of games. He started out at UK trade paper MCV in 2013 and left as deputy editor over three years later. In June 2017, he joined Steel Media as the editor for new site In October 2019 he left this full-time position at the company but still contributes to the site on a daily basis. He has also written for, VGC, Games London, The Observer/Guardian and Esquire UK.