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Rare on Sea of Thieves: 'We have a responsibility to make a positive online social space'

Sea of Thieves docks today after months of Kraken teasingbeta testing and stranger tormenting. The latter, you understand, was simply us pushing the boundaries of the sea-faring sandbox, and not because we dislike cooperation. I swear, we're friendly folk here at PCG. 

Joking aside, developer Rare is to keen to ensure Sea of Thieves provides a "positive online social space for players" from the outset—and will endeavor to address negative and toxic situations if or as they occur.   

"Initially it's a game that encourages co-operation and positive behaviour," executive producer Joe Neate tells BBC Newsbeat. "As a crew you can't harm each other and all of the rewards are shared. There's literally no reason or motivation to do anything other that cooperate."

To this end, Neate reckons developers in charge of social multiplayer games have an onus to share knowledge with one another while creating positive spaces. Studio lead Craig Duncan echoes this sentiment by suggesting cultivating a positive community is at the forefront of he and his team's process, and that positivity online can be "a breath of fresh air" within multiplayer games.  

"We're going to bring a load of people into multiplayer gaming that have maybe rejected multiplayer games before," Duncan tells Newsbeat. "It's a big challenge. I'm not going to say we've cracked the code and we've solved it, but we think we've done some really unique things in Sea of Thieves." 

Check out Duncan and Neate's respective conversations with the BBC in full over here