Team 17 has announced the release date for its upcoming cooperative sailing roguelike Ship of Fools, which will launch into the volatile waters of Steam on November 22.
The debut game by Quebec-based studio Fika Games, Ship of Fools sees one or two players managing a rickety vessel named Stormstrider as they navigate a cluster of islands known simply as "The Archipelago", searching for a way to thwart the Everlasting Storm, a monstrous tempest that threatens to submerge the entire island-chain. The game will see players battling marauding pirates and a host of dastardly sea-creatures as they sail the Archipelago's treacherous seas, stopping off at islands to scavenge resources and equipment that'll help them upgrade their ship.
Team 17 also released a new trailer to accompany the launch date announcement. I really dig the game's art-style, which has darkly comic vibe similar to Klei's eccentric survival game Don't Starve. Ship of Fools has some survival elements akin to Don't Starve too, although it otherwise seems more action-centric than Klei's game. Indeed, as your ship travels from island to island, you'll have to regularly defend it from attack, manually reloading and aiming your ships cannons, and fending off boarding parties with a good whack of a paddle.
More broadly, you explore the Archipelgo with an FTL-style travel system, choosing from different sectors of ocean to explore as you gradually wend your way to your ultimate destination. Also like FTL, if your boat sinks, it's game over, with Ship of Fools reshuffling the Archipelago for an entirely new run.
Ship of Fools isn't the first game to take a stab at a seafaring themed rogue-like. In 2018, Fireblade Software released Abandoned Ship, although it was somewhat more serious than Ship of Fools, which adopts a more caperish tone. In any case, you can view the full trailer above. For more information about Ship of Fools, check out the game's Steam page.