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An Outpost is where you’ll start your life on the Sea of Thieves, so you’d do well to learn how to make the best use of them. They’re scattered far and wide, so chances are you’ll have time to get your bearings before encountering other crews.

As you know, taverns stock grog. (If you didn’t know that, you might want to reconsider this whole piracy idea.) Speak to the tavern keeper and you’ll find your tankard filled for free – no-one ever expects a pirate to pay their bills – or you can request a top-up of your ship’s grog barrel. By the door, assuming you’re sober enough to reach it, is a helpful reminder of the Pirate Code.

Outposts may not be bustling city-states, but they’ve got plenty to offer pirates. At the clothing shop, for instance, you can trade gold not just for apparel (though there are plenty of jackets, dresses, boots, gloves and more to browse) but also tattoos and even hairstyles.

Next is the equipment shop, where spending will see you swap your battered old tankards, spyglasses and many other things with bespoke variants to add some serious style to your skulduggery.

The weapon shop, as you can probably guess by now if you’ve been paying attention, is the place to procure different weapons of both the stabby and shooty kind. There’s no difference in power or accuracy between two weapons of the same type, but new designs are a great way to express your personality and accomplishments, even if that’s just saying “I am a person who likes to smash things”.

Unlike the other shops, branches of the Pirate Emporium won’t accept gold earned from your adventures – their currency of choice is Ancient Coins, which can be purchased in packs from the Emporium or occasionally liberated from elusive Ancient Skeletons. They offer a number of exclusive cosmetics for your ship, new emotes, Pirate Appearance Potions and a varied selection of pirate pets (both domestic and exotic) to keep you company as you travel.

Lastly, there’s the Shipwright, whose shop can be naturally be found down at the docks and is the place to go if you fancy renovating your ship – whether that’s a fresh coat of paint for the hull or something grander like a new set of sails.

No matter which shop you visit, there’ll be at least one chest enabling you to root through your belongings and switch between clothing, weapons and anything else you already own. You’ll find chests like these aboard your ship too, so you can pull off a quick-change act while you’re out at sea.

As you explore, you’ll notice a few other strange individuals loitering about the place. These are representatives of the Trading Companies and, as you’re bound to bump into them sooner or later, it’s well worth your time to read up on them and what they have to offer…

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By Nine-Cat Nura

I’m Nine-Cat Nura, writing to you from the Sea of Thieves. Why? I was promised a good amount of gold if I did, that’s why. Besides, the rest of my crew are ashore, handing in a couple of skulls to Madame Olive over at the—well, I’m getting ahead of myself.