}

Here we are, our first Community Spotlight of the month, and it’s a good one! Following on from our previous Spotlight that saw us speaking to Forum legend CaptnJaq, this one delves into the life of a Sea of Thieves fan Damien, who also goes by the name of Musicmee, a man who gained notoriety after a series of Wanted posters appeared on the Forums. Now, we know how that sounds, but we encourage you to read on to find out what this was all about!

As you can tell from the poster, Technical Alpha play sessions are serious business.

[Q]: Tell us a little about what got you into gaming?

[A]: Hmmm, that’s a tricky one. I remember in my early years starting off with a SNES console and playing Super Mario World as my first ever game. I have been hooked ever since then.

My fondest gaming memory is the day the Nintendo 64 was released, my parents let me skip school and join them in buying the console from the store. This led to me playing Super Mario 64 all day and night, just to get the 121 stars. I would say I grew up on Nintendo until I followed Rare onto the Xbox, with Grabbed by the Ghoulies (seriously an underrated game!), Viva Piñata and Banjo-Kazooie: Nuts & Bolts.

[Q]: Were you a Rare fan before Sea of Thieves and do you have any favourite Rare games? 

[A]: Most definitely a fan! In my younger years I remember playing Banjo-Kazooie and laughing at all the inside jokes, innuendo and the typical British humour. I enjoyed the idea of collecting Jiggies to solve puzzles and to unlock other worlds to go further into the game. I have to say that my favourite game from the collection would have to be Banjo-Tooie, just because I loved the original so much but the sequel had so much more to offer such as expanded worlds and the anticipation of Stop ‘n’ Swop. If you’re asking me about my favourite game in terms of soundtrack, it would have to be Viva Piñata. Man, I could listen to that soundtrack all day long.

[Q]: What games are you playing currently? Any favourites?

[A]: My current two games that I often play are Sea of Thieves (obviously!) and Fortnite. I have recently teamed up with a few members of the community, and we have been walking each other through the missions. If you are into games like Plants vs. Zombies, with the tower defence kind of mechanic, this game is perfect for you. I have recently also bought a Nintendo Switch, just to play The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild.

[Q]: What brought you over to the Sea of Thieves community?

[A]: I have to ashamedly admit, before being accepted into the Alpha tests, I wasn’t too involved in the community. Which I feel really gutted about right now, because at the time I didn’t realise what such a great resource and really engaging community we have. I have always been a bit of a forum lurker, I would often watch posts come up and think to myself ‘I could answer that’, but didn’t dare to. Over time I have got to know familiar names who from the start have become good friends and this has made me get more involved with the community. I now spend a lot of my time answering questions, welcoming new members and troubleshooting issues, which matches the real life job I have and I love it!

[Q]: One thing you’re now known for in within our Forum community is the awesome Pirate Wanted poster generator that you came up with. How did you go about putting that together?

[A]: Going back to my day job, I do a lot of work in web and mobile design and content creation. I saw a post by someone who was offering to individually design posters for Forum members, and I thought to myself, as I do with many computer tasks, this could be made easier. I knew I had all the skills and ideas to put it together, the hardest part was finding the assets for the posters and coming up with the phrases. So I thought I would outsource this to the community, and they have come up with some awesome lines to put onto the posters.

If anybody does want to create their own Wanted pirate poster, they can visit https://sotpirat.es and enter their own gamertag. If any members have any ideas for phrases they would like to add, please visit the Forum post.

What's a captain without a first mate? We just wonder who really wears the Tricorn in this partnership.

[Q]: The community has been really creative over the past several months with people making everything from songs to props to videos. Are there any creations that particularly stood out to you?

[A]: We really do have a creative community. Every time I hop onto the Forums (which is often) there is always something new that amazes me. I do like the drawings that pop up from time to time, however there was one thread recently that was full of pencil drawings of the Rare crew that absolutely blew me away! Being a bit of a tech guy, I would love to see more content like videos and podcasts, because they are my kind of thing. Who knows, maybe in the future I might find some time to create my own podcast.

There is a user who is called spoonshortage in our community who makes some amazing comic-style drawings, which always make me laugh. I hope she carries on doing these.

Recently I have started watching The Crow’s Nest and Lord Splendid YouTube videos because I like the hype it creates for the game.

[Q]: Since joining, you’ve shown yourself to be a really helpful member of the community, helping others and answering questions wherever you can. Is this a new way of interacting with other gamers for you, or have you experienced this in other gaming communities?

[A]: This is my first game where I have really interacted with the community. Back in the day, I was part of an obscure community dedicated to Banjo-Kazooie and Rare, known as The Rare Witch Project. But even then I was still just a lurker, never really getting involved. The Sea of Thieves community has been awesome in allowing me to get involved, help out where I can and share my expertise and knowledge. I have never really felt this connection to a game before, to join a community of like-minded people where I have made some great friends just by being a part of it. The community makes everyone feel welcome. Once I realised this, from that moment on I knew I could help other members who felt the same as me, who have also never been part of a community like this one.

[Q]: Do you have any standout moments or stories from your time playing Sea of Thieves?

[A]: There have been far too many great moments in the game to just pick one, but in brief I have had a blast during my time playing the game. I have been lucky enough to play every minute of every single session and here are my standout moments.

During one of my many sessions, it got close to the end of the session and we had plundered many ships and found loads of treasure, the only thing left to do was Pirate Jousting (of course, what else?)! We had fun lining up two ships side by side, with opposing crews on their own ships, and we fired ourselves out of cannons at each other. The first time shooting our blunderbuss, the second swashbuckling our cutlasses and finally playing our instruments as the servers went offline. It was such a funny moment, one I never thought would witness in a pirate game.

Over my time playing Sea of Thieves, I have also enjoyed meeting regular and famous Forum faces. In one of my first sessions I bumped into Lizalaroo and KattTruewalker randomly through matchmaking, I remember saying ‘Whoa! This is the famous LIZ and KAT’. I have also been lucky enough to meet people like DuMy2008, ClumsyGeorge and Gamechick1988, who have made my game experience so much more enjoyable and I hope we can continue to crew together for many more sessions to come.

We strongly advise all readers not to try this at home, or in Sea of Thieves for that matter!

[Q]: What are you looking forward to most in Sea of Thieves?

[A]: When the game was first announced, I was so looking forward to solo play. But now I have got to know members of the community and have had a chance to play in multiplayer. I now cannot wait to play Sea of Thieves in multiplayer, forever. I want to be the RICHEST pirate out on the seas and with my expert treasure-sniffing companion Gamechick1988 I’m sure it won’t be long.

One of the other things that I look forward to doing in the game is hunting for Easter eggs, whether it be subtle references to Rare games of the past or my personal favourite, when a community member’s gamertag has been etched into the game forever. I hope there are many more of these to come.

[Q]: If you had to choose a pirate name, what would it be?

[A]: I would like for people to recognise me in-game by my gamertag, so let’s go with Captain Musicmee. I know this is really boring, but I feel I have built up a reputation in the Forums and in-game with my gamertag. I would hate to not be known by anything other than Captain Musicmee.

[Q]: What kind of hobbies do you enjoy outside of gaming?

[A]: As a result of my job, I find myself enjoying being the tech guy in my normal routine. I have designed websites for people, businesses and big companies. I spend most of my day in Photoshop and coding, whether it be websites, web apps or mobile apps, and the whole aim of what I do is making people’s lives easier with a computer. I am always clicking away at my keyboard and mouse. When not at the computer I like to make the most out of my time by visiting either the coast or historic sites. Northumberland is my perfect getaway!

[Q]: Share a fun fact about yourself. Anything is fair game!

[A]: I am named after the child in The Omen, it was my Dad’s choice and yes, everyone I tell my name to does ask to see the 666 on the back of my head. Luckily my sister was named after a football team and not after the Devil’s child, again this was my Dad’s choice…

Thanks to Damien for taking the time to talk to us and especially for telling us his Pirate Jousting story. It goes without saying what we’ll be doing next time we boot up Sea of Thieves. You can also check out the thread where Damien’s Wanted posters first made their appearance.

Our next Community Spotlight is only a couple of weeks away, so until then, swing by our social channels to check out the latest Sea of Thieves news and updates!