The main enemy a pirate will encounter in Sea of Thieves is the mighty skeleton. This bony minion comes in various types, all of which will put your skills to the test. If you want to make it as a pirate, you’re going to need to know all the skeleton types and how to kill them.
Skeleton Types and Weaknesses
There are several different skeleton types in Sea of Thieves, each with their own strengths, weaknesses, and their own captain. Typically, you will only encounter one type of skeleton at a time during a regular quest like the Order of Souls voyages. The only time where all skeleton types will appear is during a skeleton fort raid.
- Bone Skeleton
- Bandana Skeleton
- Plant Skeleton
- Shadow Skeleton
- Gold Skeleton
- Captain Skeleton
The bone skeleton is your bog-standard white enemy that can appear just about everywhere. These skeletons are by far the easiest to kill. They have no overt strengths or weaknesses and are susceptible to all forms of attack.
Blue Bandana Skeleton
A skeleton wearing a piece of clothing like the bandana, eyepatch, or arm band, are exactly the same as the regular bone skeletons, but they have more health and are more aggressive. These skeletons are usually found during Order of Souls voyages or during Skeleton Forts. Some of the other skeleton types can wear clothing as well, but they are defined by their main feature.
A plant skeleton might look friendly, all covered in flowers and leafy-greens, but don’t let that fool you, these skeletons are exceptionally tough. Their leafy cover acts as a sort of body armor which is strengthened whenever they touch water. Keep these skeletons away from water at all cost, else their armor will refresh. When out of water, they will dry up and become more brittle. Don’t bother shooting them, as their armor simply absorbs the blast, use the cutlass to hack them down.
The shadow skeletons (sometimes called ghosts, spectral or ethereal skeletons) are black, misty skeletons that look all foggy and creepy with beedy little blue eyes. These skeletons are invulnerable whenever it is nighttime and the only way to make them vulnerable is to equip the lantern and raise it up. The shadow skeletons will immediately react, recoiling from the light while their bodies become whole.
Gold skeletons are the toughest skeleton types in Sea of Thieves. The gold skeleton is all but invincible when it first spawns. It will take a lot of blunderbuss shots, cannonballs, and explosives to kill them, unless you know their weakness: water. Throw a bucket of water on a gold skeleton or lead them to the ocean and watch them rust. Once the gold skeleton is rusty, use one of the three gun types to kill them.
Gunpowder skeletons are the newest (and potentially temporary) addition to Sea of Thieves, brought in for the current Bilge Rat Adventure that tasks pirates with hunting down and killing gunpowder skeletons in large groups. These skeletons are easily identifiable by the large gunpowder barrel that they hold. Whenever a player gets too close to one, the skeleton will light the fuse and give chase, and if the player doesn't get away fast enough, the skeleton will explode.
Killing these is as simple as taking aim with a weapon and shooting the gunpowder barrel, causing it to explode, taking down the skeleton and any surrounding skeletons. Corralling a group of gunpowder skeletons together and causing one to explode will set off a tremendous chain reaction, so be careful!
As mentioned above, each of the skeleton types has a captain variant. This is a bigger version of the skeleton that retains the same attributes as its smaller minions. A gold skeleton captain will be weak to water, a shadowl skeleton captain must have light shined on it, etc. Skeleton captains will only appear after their minions have be slain, so use this to your advantage by keeping one minion alive if you need time to recover and get resources. Also, they’re easily spotted by the unique hat they wear, and the big orange name above their head.
There will likely be more skeleton types to come as Rare continues to support Sea of Thieves. We’ll be sure to update this as more skeletons pull themselves out of the ground to fight us! Check out our Sea of Thieves guide if you want more insights into the various features and items in the game.