E3 2017: Hands-On With Skull and Bones

During the Ubisoft E3 2017 press conference Skull and Bones was announced as a new game coming out in 2018. Inspired by the ship combat from Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag, Skull and Bones is a full Naval ship combat game. I was able to get about thirty minutes of play time during out visit to the Ubisoft booth.

Skull and Bones takes place in the Indian Ocean area. You have a swivel view of your captain controlling the ship. The water looks amazing as you pass by islands or even shallow reefs during you descent to loot locations. Water splashes onto your ship deck when you are sailing over rough waters. Your ship’s crew is alive and working to maintain your vessel and assist in getting ready to defend or attack.

It’s all about wind management. You have a mini-map on the bottom right hand corner of your screen letting you know the current direction of the wind and when is the best time to trim your sails to get the best speed. Skull and Bones controls very similar to shooters nowadays. You can aim you primary weapon with the right trigger and fire cannons with the left. There is a visual indicator shown on the water of the possible range of you current attack. You also need to make sure your are sailing in a good direction while in combat to avoid sailing into an island or just getting put into a possible deadly scenario.

Game Mode:
We played a five vs five mode where you could select different classes of ships. You could have a marksman’s ship, which has the potential to deal tremendous damage from a distance but isn’t built to take close range damage. You have a tank style ship that is harder to sail with but can deal and take intense damage in close quarters. You also have a cruiser style that can maneuver fairly quickly and also has the ability to ram the opponents ship if positioned correctly. Teamwork is very important as well. As you take down enemy ships you will be collecting their “loot”. You then need to protect your loot while either helping pick up more loot or assisting you team in their pick ups. In order to be victorious you will need to escape the battle ground or allow your teammate with the most loot to escape to ensure victory.

The victory rewards are shared with all teammates and Ubisoft has hinted at a faction based system along with a season system similar to For Honor and Overwatch. Skulls and Bones is set to launch in Fall 2018.

Why not check out the latest E3 2017 news from PS Nation:

Written by Dave Hunt

Dave Hunt

Podcast Co-Host
Reviewer/Features Writer

Helping people in games is the most fun I have ever had.

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