Captain Jay from The Crow's Nest with an idea I've had floating about in my head for the last few days. In an effort to clamp down on overly aggressive /toxic behavior by some members in the SoT community I sat down and looked to some of the community requests and how other games manage extremely hostile and sometimes trolling behavior.
The result was a combined/new take on something I believe Sea of Thieves could benefit from - The Reaper's Mark.
Imagine if other crews and their players/nameplates stay as white when interacting with them (note: interaction implies talking, drinking, playing music, etc), identical to the way we have it now.
Now, let's say one of these other players from the other crew decides to attack, their nameplate (only the attacking pirate) switches to red. If I am the recipient of this damage and I counterattack in an effort to defend myself, my nameplate also switches to red.
This implies we have both entered into this feud and are aware of the consequences, but if I do not defend myself in any way and I'm killed as a result of the violence (my nameplate remains white), the attacking player gains a portion of the reaper's mark. Perhaps an icon next to the player name tag could denote which player has the reaper's mark.
If this player continues to be overtly aggressive against unarmed/uninterested players, they gain a larger "Reaper's Mark". Their last known location could occasionally ping on the map. This offers pirates on the server to potentially go after a bounty target (the hostile player) and offers the hostile player an even greater threat and challenge to go up against - the pirates on the server and their cargo in tow if they successfully defeat the new 'hunters'.
Successfully defeating the hostile pirate with the Reaper's Mark and his or her crew could reward players with a new type of item to be traded in for gold/ experience.
EDIT: A simple incident (example: killing a pirate on a sloop) would not be enough to trigger the Reaper's Mark, but continued violence against the same pirate or multiple pirates could do the trick. I think of the Wanted Level in games such as GTA as an example. The more severe / prolonged the action is - the higher the mark can be.
The idea is far from perfect but it's just that - an idea combining different iterations of ideas here and other games.
Let me know what you think and how we could build upon this!
~ Captain Jay
The Crow's Nest