We learned a couple things about the new system last night through some odd interactions. The first wasn't too bazaar, but they both gave us some incite on how things can work with the hourglass.
My friend and I on a sloop had just finished a battle and sailed to golden sands to quit out and switch to a brig. The hourglass told us we couldn't cash out because there was a rival ship nearby. We quickly realized there was a grade 5 reaper near the TT portal, and that they were battling another sloop. We decided to get involved, however the other guardian ship was sunk before we could arrive. We engaged the reaper 5 servant of flame sloop as we were an athena emissary as well as a guardian. The battle lasted a while in the classic organic fashion and I wondered if we were still eligible to be attacked from another servant of flame ship from another server. Then it happened. An official battle started while we were still engaging the reaper 5. The new ship and the reaper 5 quickly teamed up to fight us together, just like we were planning on doing with the other guardian sloop that had sank. The 2v1 sloop battle lasted until we were out of cannonballs and our other friend was getting tired of waiting for us to join him on a brig. So we crashed into the tavern, lowered our emissary and quit out.
So we can't cash in our hourglass if a rival ship is nearby, even if we aren't in a battle with them, and being in an organic battle with a rival ship doesn't prevent an official battle from starting. If we had more supplies and weren't switching ships, I assume we could have continued the battle and possibly had another guardian sloop appear to attack the original grade 5 reaper, creating a 2v2 half organic, half matchmade sloop battle.
The other thing that happened was a little more crazy and I'm still kicking myself for messing up trying to capture a clip of it. We were on a brig, merging in to attack a servant of flame. I was standing at the helm when the server started to put us in the battle. Instead of being underwater, we were in space. The first thing I saw was the entire ship spinning around me. The ship was doing a rapid barrel roll going from under my feet to over my head as I remained fixed in the same position. The helm directly in front of me looking like an axis point. I looked down and between revolutions of the ship, I could see the entire sea of thieves below me. I realized we were in space as we all black screened and found ourselves at sanctuary outpost. Our emissary flag was gone but more importantly so was all of our supplies. Thinking that we just lost the battle, we set off for hidden spring keep to get more supplies. While docked there, I noticed on the map a reaper 5 docked at the reapers hideout, but it had a flameheart symbol on it. I thought to myself that it wasn't a champion ship, but I was also confused since I did not see this marker on the map when we knew there was a servant of flame ship nearby. I asked if we should raise our guardian status and go after them, but we decided to stock up more at the seafort.
After the seafort, we then turned to head to this ship and fight them. I told my crew to vote up the guardian status only to realize, we were still guardians, however there was no war map on the table. Not even rolled up. That's when I started to suspect that this ship we could see on the map was our fight. They were stuck in the battle bounds while we were glitched out and roaming around to collect supplies. I turned us slightly to stay out of the skeleton ship battle and then spotted a rowboat near the north star seapost. As I got closer I could see someone was rowing this boat. My in game mic wasn't working and my crew was afk so I raised sails while the pirate in the rowboat was trying to talk to me. My crew came back and talked to the guy and we learned that they were our rivals, and we were supposed to be fighting them, but they were parked with a rock in front of them when the battle started. We likely appeared in this rock and it probably launched us into space. Despite sinking and loosing our emissary flag, we did not loose the battle and it was continuing for the other ship like normal, just without a ship to actually fight. They couldn't sail out of the battle area but they could row out of it, so he had started to long journey to track us down so we could have our fight. He asked if we wanted to fight and first we messed with him saying "No, you're stuck in pirate purgatory now, never to leave the reapers hideout" but we had our fight and won. This however did not bring back our war map. We couldn't vote to attack others and didn't want to wait around to see if someone could attack us, so we sailed to plunder and cashed in.
When I attempted to record what had happened, I accidentally clicked "start recording" instead of recording the last 30 seconds. I immediately stopped the recording and clicked the correct button but it then only recorded as far back as the previous recording, so unfortunately I missed capturing our space barrel rolls.