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Sea of Thieves Cursed Sails guide

Catch up on everything you need to know for the three week Sea of Thieves campaign

Cass Marshall is a news writer focusing on gaming and culture coverage, taking a particular interest in the human stories of the wild world of online games.

The new Cursed Sails expansion for Sea of Thieves will be active for three weeks. While most of the content will remain in the game after the expansion, there are two time-locked aspects that will run throughout the event’s duration: the region-wide skeleton ship battles, and the story campaign explaining the fate of Wanda the Weaponsmith.

In total, the update brings 29 new Bilge Rat Commendations, which award 300 Doubloons, five new titles, and time-limited cosmetic rewards. The commendations and titles will remain in the game forever, but the doubloons and cosmetics must be completed during the three week Cursed Sails campaign.

In this guide, we’ll cover everything that comes in the new Cursed Sails expansion, including how to unlock every time-locked cosmetic. We’ll be covering both the details of the regional skeleton ship battles and walking you through how to complete Wanda’s story for a title and three sets of new sails.


Completing many of these Commendations requires players to join an Alliance. To join an Alliance with other crews, head to your crow’s nest. You’ll find a new tab in your ship flag box for Alliances.

Being part of an Alliance does not share voyages, and you are still able to attack each other (or betray each other, if the moment is right!). Loot is split between the crews. The crew that sells an item to a vendor at an outpost will receive full price; every crew in the Alliance will get 50 percent of the gold. Crews also share reputation across Alliances.

Skeleton ship battles

The battles against skeleton ships take place in all three regions at the world. You can check the skeleton banners at every Outpost to find out when a battle will take place in that region. The schedule for these battles runs off the in-game calendar, not the real-world one — make sure you check your pocket watch to find the current date. In-game time moves at 60 seconds per hour, so one day takes 24 minutes.

There will always be a battle on the map; just check the list below and head to that region.

  • The Battle for The Shores of Plenty: 1-10, north west of Smuggler’s Bay
  • The Great War of The Ancient Isles: 11-20, west of Sharkbait Cove
  • The Final Stand of The Wilds: 21-30, east of Marauder’s Arch

Once a player ship enters the area, AI ships will spawn. These ships submerge, reposition, and fire cursed cannonballs — taking one down is a serious feat. Eventually, a Captain will spawn on a final ship; killing them wins the battle, and spawns a ton of Stronghold-quality loot.

Winning a battle for the first time in each region earns a player 10 Doubloons and a title. Winning a battle across all three regions earns 20 Doubloons and a title.

Furthermore, winning all three battles unlocks access to the four Bone Crusher ship livery items in Duke’s Shop (which you can purchase for 40 Doubloons apiece). You’ll also get a Bone Crusher tattoo set and scar. Snazzy!

There are more small-scale achievements that will encourage players to complete multiple playthroughs. This includes downing 50 individual skeleton ships and completing the content on all three ship types. The event will also last three real world weeks, with each week offering different ships with different curses.

  • Week 1: July 31 - August 7
  • Week 2: August 8-14
  • Week 3: August 15-21

Defeating each set of crews that debut each week will earn a total of 45 Doubloons in increments of 15. This means players will want to complete all three skeleton battles across all three weeks, ideally once on a sloop, once on a galleon, and once on a brigantine.

The Secret of Wanda the Weaponsmith

In addition to the above, players can complete a story campaign that will unlock three sets of new sails, a new title, and Doubloons.

Upon zoning in, talk to the Bilge Rat in your tavern. He’ll tell you that a skeleton captain called Warsmith is leading the charge in an unprecedented amassing of skeletons.

“I heard the shipwright at Golden Sands knows something about it.” Duke will tell you about the rumors of skeleton ships.


Sharon the Shipwright at Golden Sands Outpost doesn’t know anything about Warsmith; she’s more concerned with Wanda the Weaponsmith. She asks you to check in on the shop, which is currently being run by Wanda’s sister.

Head into the Weaponsmith’s Shop in Golden Sands, and read the note on the counter and the pendant on the crates to the side. After you examine both of these items, leave the Weaponsmith’s shop and examine footprints outside the front door.

Follow the trail to the shore of Golden Sands, where you’ll find rowboats. The footprints were left by skeletons; they’ve left Golden Sands on one of the rowboats. You can either check your compass and map to track their route, or talk to Sharon again — both methods will lead you to Crescent Isle.

On the coast of Crescent Isle, you’ll find … Salty. He was once a sailor, but he’s been turned into a skeleton parrot.


Salty will discuss his business ventures with Wanda, and give you clues that lead to three islands: Mermaid’s Hideaway, Thieves’ Haven, and The Sunken Grove.

You can head to any island in any order. Each island has a journal by Wanda on it:

  • Mermaid Hideaway’s journal is near the camp at the lake.
  • The Thieves’ Haven journal is in the East shipwreck camp.
  • The Sunken Grove’s journal is in the cave at the center of the island, near a camp fire.

After finding and reading all three journals, you’re tasked with returning to Salty at Crescent Isle, and you inform him of Wanda’s betrayal. He sends you to Wanderer’s Refuge and the secret alchemy lab that he worked out of with Wanda.


Head to the big tunnel in the middle of the island, where a small river runs through the path. You’ll find a small opening in the rocks on the southwest side of the tunnel.


Once you’re inside, examine the Evil Pirate Code, the Cannon Base, the Apron, the Tools, and the Scroll. That will tell you Wanda’s ultimate fate, and you can return to Sharon at Golden Sands.

You’ll get a quest complete and a set of sails. You can head to Plunder Outpost and Dagger Tooth Outpost to unlock two more sets of sails, for three total (one for each region of the world).

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