Yesterday, Sea of Thieves (opens in new tab) added one of its most requested features: private crews. It lets you limit slots in your crew to friends only, which seems like a good way to stop players abusing the brig to lock up their teammates (opens in new tab). 12 hours later, the feature was disabled because it was causing server instability, and it still isn't back online.
All the other changes that came alongside private crews have also been temporarily removed, including hiding name tags underwater—that'll be great for stealth when it does come back—and the ability to hand items to a crew mate without dropping it on the ground first.
We have completed our emergency maintenance and the game is back online. The previously added features have been turned off temporarily and we will continue to monitor game performance and develop a plan to reinstate the features soon. Thank you for your patience. pic.twitter.com/t8feB9hAcuMay 16, 2018
Unfortunately, it doesn't seem to have fixed the server instability, and this morning developer Rare said it was "still working on fully resolving" the problems. It didn't say when players can expect a full fix, or when it plans to reintroduce the previously added features, but hopefully we'll hear more later today. I'll update this article if that happens.