The Shroudbreaker Tall Tale is the first tale in the Shores of Gold storyline.
If you have already completed The Shroudbreaker and are looking to do other Tall Tales, head on over to the list of all our Tall Tale Guides. If you are looking for journals, click here for a guide to all journal locations.
If this is your first sail through the Shores of Gold Tall Tales, then you are in the right spot!
Here we’ve created a guide to help you through your first adventure to reach the Shores of Gold! You might take a look at your interactive Sea of Thieves companion map, too! There’s an entirely new series of markers specifically for the Shroudbreaker Tall Tale to help you chart your course.
You can find the web version of the interactive SoT companion map here.
If you’d like to use the interactive map on your phone or tablet, you can always use the SoT Companion app.
The Shroudbreaker Tall Tale: Step by Step
Step 1: Starting the Shroudbreaker Tall Tale
Perhaps because it’s the first tale, you can start your adventure as soon as you arrive in the Sea of Thieves—no matter which outpost tavern you wake up in.
Approach the mysterious stranger in the tavern. There will be a curious new book on your right. This is Shroudbreaker Tall Tale’s book.
Using the prompt on the book, vote for this tall tale. Once you and your crew have voted, the Tall Tale will be activated and the book will be added to your Map Radial.
Don’t set sail just yet! The Mysterious Stranger has a few words for you—foretelling the dangerous and epic journey you are about to begin. He also mentions a Shroudbreaker artifact. That is what you are after! You will need the Shroudbreaker to make your way to the Shores of Gold!
Now that you’ve heard what the Mysterious Stranger has to say, go to your Map Radial and select your newly acquired Tall Tale book. These are the notes from the Pirate Lord himself!
Out of context, these notes might seem a bit disjointed. However, within the Pirate Lord’s notes, there are clues you can use to piece together the challenge before you. Working backwards…
Your ultimate goal is to retrieve the Shroudbreaker. The Shroudbreaker is hidden in an Ancient Vault. To access that Ancient Vault, you’ll need a Totem. The Totem is locked in the Ancient Chest. To find the Ancient Chest, you’ll need to check the Ship’s Log. So, we begin by finding the Ship’s Log.
Step 2: Find the Magpie’s Wing Ship’s Log
In the early pages of the book, you learn that the Ship’s Log went down with the Pirate Lord’s ship—Magpie’s Wing. Chased by a fearsome ship called, “The Burning Blade,” Magpie’s Wing made its final stand at an uncharted island between The Crooked Masts and Crook’s Hollow.
If you are familiar with the uncharted islands in Sea of Thieves, you will know that the book is referring to the uncharted island located at N13. Go to your map table, place a marker in the coordinates N13 and start your journey!
Click here to see your destination with even more precision: The Magpie’s Wing Ship’s Log. You can zoom out to see where this marker is in relation to more recognizable islands on the map.
Once your ship is nearing N13, look for a small island with a bright red plant in the middle. This is the uncharted island you seek.
Dive below the water on the North West side of the uncharted island. You will see the shipwreck of the Magpie’s Wing. Where’s the Ship’s Log? It’s just where you might expect: the captain’s quarters.
Originally, the ship’s log could be found off to the side near other scattered reading materials. Perhaps moved by the undulating sea, lately the ship’s log has been found in the Captain’s Chair.
Swim on over to the shipwrecked captain’s quarters, pick up the Ship’s Log, and the Ship’s Log pages will be added to your Shroudbreaker Tall Tale book.
Finding the ship’s log will also unlock the The Lost Voyage commendation.
Step 3: Locate the Ancient Chest
The Ship’s Log that was added to your tale book will lead you to the location of the Ancient Chest—eventually.
The Ship’s Log documents the fateful chase before the Magpie’s Wing met its end. For it was during this chase—with the “Burning Blade” in pursuit—that the Pirate Lord dropped the chest overboard in an attempt to prevent its capture.
In this manner, the log will give you a starting island and then compass directions and island descriptions to guide you to the chest’s resting place.
You’ll likely want a map nearby—either the map table on your ship, or the interactive map. This will help you determine which unnamed islands are discussed in the log, and follow the route the Magpie’s Wing took to evade the “Burning Blade.”
Helpful Hints to find the Ancient Chest
While we cannot be sure how many routes there might be, we can provide a few helpful hints that may illuminate your path.
If the log describes a chain of islands or a clump of islands, it is very likely referring to Snake Island.
If you read about a fortified island, the log is talking about a fort.
A large tangled nest of islands has been known to be Shark Bait Cove.
A large island with tall arches has indicated Thieves’ Haven.
Small shallow isles has described Old Salts Atoll.
The islands in these descriptions are not your final destination. Instead, these islands should help you locate the island where the crew actually threw the chest overboard.
The Ancient Chest can be found almost anywhere. However, it has been most commonly found at: Paradise Spring, Snake Island, Devil’s Ridge, Lookout Point, Chicken Isle, Fools Lagoon, and Cutlass Cay.
Where on the island?
Note the side of the island on which the crew dropped the chest, too! The log might be quite direct and tell you the side by specifically stating North or South.
If no compass direction is given, you’ll likely still get a hint. If the word top is mentioned, it’s on the North side. If the word bottom is mentioned, check the South side.
Once you know the side of the island, it’s time to go for a swim! It likely won’t be too far. You’ll want to look for the glint of the chest about 20-30 feet from the shore.
Take the Ancient Chest aboard your ship and open it up. Inside you will find more pages to add to your tale book, as well as the Totem!
There are six possible totems you might find, and each Totem acts as a key to a vault on a specific island. The pages added to your book will give you a hint as to which island corresponds with the Totem you’ve found. If the hint is not enough…
Boar Totem – Devil’s Ridge
Crab Totem – Uncharted Island at N13
Moon Totem – Crescent Isle
Scarab Totem – Crook’s Hollow
Snake Totem – Mermaid’s Hideaway
Shark Totem – Kraken’s Fall
Find your Totem’s island on your map, and set sail!
Step 4: Locate the Ancient Vault
The six islands mentioned above now have secret Ancient Vaults hidden within them. They can only be opened by placing the corresponding Totem in the lock to the Ancient Vault door.
Upon unlocking an Ancient Vault, you will also unlock the Vault of the Ancients commendation.
Here is where the interactive SoT companion map might really come in handy. Each vault is marked on the map, and you can get your bearings zooming in and out to your heart’s content.
However, the descriptions and pictures below might just be enough for you to stumble upon the right path.
Helpful Hints to find the Totem “Locks”
First, it helps to know what this “lock” looks like. It does not look like the typical image your mind might conjure when you think of a “lock.” Rather, it’s a small flat-topped rock, etched with a small square—about the size of your Totem’s base.
If you are struggling to find this “lock,” try holding the Totem. Walk around the vault’s general vicinity and hold the Totem out toward nearby rocks. When you see a prompt to unlock, you will know you’ve found it.
Ancient Vault on Devil’s Ridge
Happily, this is a rather easy find. The Ancient Vault is located on the southeast beach. Look for the boar head rock paintings. The Totem’s lock is just off to the lefthand side.
Ancient Vault on the Uncharted Island at N13
This Ancient Vault is quite well hidden. You’ll need to swim to it! Remember the red plant discussed above? It’s on the West side of the island.
Dive underwater next to that red plant and you should see an underwater tunnel. Follow it. When you surface, you’ll find yourself in an underwater cave.
Once you’re in the cave, look around for a workbench. Behind that workbench—on the back wall—is where you’ll need to place your Crab Totem.
Ancient Vault on Crescent Isle
Crescent Isle has a hollowed and hallowed center, leading to ground level caves to the north and to the south. The ancient vault location is in the northern cave.
So, if you enter into the island’s center archway from the east, you’ll turn right to enter the northern cave. Once in the cave, turn to the right yet again (facing east). There you will find where you must place your Moon Totem.
Ancient Vault on Crook’s Hollow
Locating this Ancient Vault is made easier by its proximity to the island’s most identifiable feature: the waterfall. It is located in the south cave behind the waterfall’s veil.
Look for Scarab rock paintings on the South wall of the cave. If you’re looking at the waterfall from within the cave, it will be on the right.
Ancient Vault on Mermaid’s Hideaway
This Ancient Vault location is also mercifully easier to find. Head to the northwest side of island. No doubt you’ve come under this archway in the past to reload your weapon from the nearby ammo chest.
You’ll find the Snake Totem’s resting place below—and a bit behind—the archway, on the western side. After you place the Snake Totem, the vault will open up on the eastern side.
Ancient Vault on Kraken’s Fall
Archways seem to be a good bet for finding these Ancient Vaults. On Kraken’s Fall, the Ancient Vault is located underneath the island’s main archway.
This archway is rather large. So, let’s narrow it down. The Ancient Vault is on the north side of this archway, and you’ll see shark paintings nearby.
As conspicuous as the archway might be, the Shark Totem’s final resting place is not. To open the vault, you will be placing the Shark Totem among a few nondescript rocks on the beach.
Step 5: Solve Ancient Vault Puzzle
Inside the Ancient Vault you will see an altar. To start the puzzle, you will light all four braziers—one on each of the altar’s four corners.
Do not start the puzzle just yet, though!
Before you light that altar, you will want to study the last page in your tale book that you got from the Ancient Chest. That last page contains the solution to the puzzle.
You’ll want to study those solutions first—and perhaps decide who among your crew will be turning which columns—because, once you light that altar and the puzzle has begun, the room will begin to fill with water!
You will have until you drown to solve the puzzle, and you only get one chance at it!
If you die during the puzzle, the entire tale will fail. This means you will have to start again, all the way back with the Mysterious Stranger!
You will receive one of the two types of puzzles to solve in the Ancient Vault.
One of the possible puzzles will have three lines comprising of four symbols each. In front of the altar in the ancient vault are four columns. These columns have a block in the middle of them with which you will interact to rotate.
While the puzzle is active, you will rotate each pillar until the correct symbols are showing, in the correct order, sequence by sequence.
For example, the first sequence on the last page might have a Shroudbreaker symbol and then three Warrior symbols following it. If so, you would go to the first pillar and rotate it until it shows the Shroudbreaker symbol. You would then move onto the next three pillars—rotating all three of them to the “Warrior.”
You do not need to rotate the pillars in order. In other words, you could rotate the three pillars on the right to the Warrior before rotating the pillar on the left to the Shroudbreaker. It only matters that the combination is in order—reading left to right—when you actually “enter” your solution at the altar.
After you have all four symbols showing in the correct order, you will confirm your solution back at the altar table. Interacting with the button on the altar and having the correct symbols will progress you on to the next sequence of symbols.
To continue the example above, the next sequence of symbols is three boats for each of the three columns on the left ending with the Shroudbreaker symbol on the rightmost column.
The third and final sequence starts with the Shroudbreaker and is followed by three symbols of a group of three.
After the third sequence is entered and confirmed, the water will dissipate and the first part of vault puzzle will be complete!
The second possible puzzle is one that will have more than four symbols per line. Along with the greater number of symbols, the puzzle will also state a number of the symbols required to solve the sequence. You will rotate the four blocks until the number of symbols shown add up to the number given in the puzzle.
For example, if the line of symbols shows the follower symbol and says “8 Followers”, then you will need rotate the blocks until there are a total of eight follower symbols showing. A possible solution would be:
First block: 3 Followers
Second block: 2 Followers
Third block: 2 Followers
Fourth block: 1 Follower
The combination of followers combined from the four blocks will add up to eight and you will be able to enter the correct solution.
If the line of symbols has one symbol different from the rest, you will have to use the remaining blocks to add up the symbols required.
Another example would be if the line of symbols shows the Shroudbreaker symbol and then boat symbols with the text, “4 Boats”. A possible solution would be:
First block: Shroudbreaker
Second block: 2 Boats
Third block: 1 Boat
Fourth block: 1 Boat
After you have all four blocks adding up the correct number of symbols, you will confirm your solution back at the alter table. Interacting with the button on the altar and having the correct symbols will progress you on to the next sequence of symbols.
After the third sequence is entered and confirmed, the water will wash away and you will have completed the first part of vault puzzle! Now, onto the next step of the puzzle.
Step 6: Retrieve Vault Medallions
Retrieving Vault Medallions
After completing the symbol-matching section of the vault puzzle, a map will appear on the altar. This map is a section of the island you are on, and it shows the location of a Vault Medallion. Find the Vault Medallion, and bring it back to the altar. You will do this three times.
Each time you retrieve a medallion, the image appearing in the altar will change to a new area of the island for you to dig at. The glowing circle shown in the image is the exact location of the medallion in that area.
Be warned! When you dig up one of the medallions, two skeletons will spawn to thwart you! Not just any skeletons though, brand new coral skeletons. Have your cutlass ready to dash them to bits!
Finding Tricky Vault Medallions
If you’re not too familiar with the island, you might try using the interactive map. On the interactive map, you can zoom in on your island and find where it matches up with the altar’s map.
You can also turn on landmark or rock painting markers to see which ones are close by. That way if you see them while you’re wandering about, you’ll know you’re close!
Although we’ve not found all medallion locations just yet, below we’ve listed locations where these medallions have been found on three of the six islands: Crook’s Hollow, Devil’s Ridge, and the Uncharted Island at N-13.
Crook’s Hollow Medallions
The Crook’s Hollow medallions are located at (1) the Scarab rock painting in the Southern cave, (2) behind the waterfall that covers the East entrance of the South cave, and (3) on top of the island in front of the Stone Head landmark.
Devil’s Ridge Medallions
The Devil’s Ridge medallions are located (1) in front of the pond near the waterfall, (2) on the middle level of the island, on the walkway that sits just above the Ancient Vault, and (3) in the cave in the middle of the island—just in front of the Boar Shrine landmark.
Mermaid’s Hideaway Medallions
The medallions on Mermaid’s Hideaway are located (1) on the North side of the island—above the Ancient Vault, (2) on one of the pillars on the west side of the island, just south of the wooden bridge (don’t worry, no cannons are required; you can walk there), and (3) and near a lantern below the bridge.
N13 Uncharted Island Medallions
The medallions on the Uncharted Island at N13 are located (1) near the cave entrance on a pillar, (2) on the southeast-most islet, and (3) southwest of the shipwreck under two arches.
After returning all three medallions, the Ancient Vault puzzle will be complete and the Shroudbreaker will present itself in front of the altar between the two middle pillars.
Best be quick once you grab that Shroudbreaker. A horde of those coral skellies will be spawning to chase you off the island!
Step 7: Return the Shroudbreaker
Grab the Shroudbreaker, and get back to your boat for a daring escape. After you complete the puzzle, you will hear rumbling music and a horde of coral skeletons spawning around you—both chasing you off the island!
During this grand exit, you might also notice that—for claiming the Shroudbreaker artifact—you have now unlocked a commendation: The Key to Adventure.
You can return to any Mysterious Stranger with the Shroudbreaker, but we suggest you head to Plunder Outpost. That is where you will be starting the second Tall Tale: The Cursed Rogue.
Walk up to the Mysterious Stranger and return the Shroudbreaker. Completing this Tall Tale will grant you the commendation: The Shroudbreaker.
The Cursed Rogue
Ready to head to the Shores of Gold? Not so fast!
It appears that the Shroudbreaker is missing four important stones, which are required for its power. The Mysterious Stranger directs you to Olivia at Plunder Outpost to help you find these missing stones.
In Madame Olivia’s tent, you will find the second Tall Tale Book in the Shores of Gold storyline: The Cursed Rogue.
Madame Olivia will give you what she can, but the Order of Souls’ clues are always a bit cryptic. So, if you would like a bit more intel, you might take a peek at The Cursed Rogue Tall Tale Guide.
Yes, you may now continue to the second Tall Tale, but
Remember to do the Shroudbreaker Tall Tale Again!
To earn the commendation “Footsteps of the Pirate Lord,” you will need to complete the Shroudbreaker Tall Tale five times!
Upon completing the Shroudbreaker Tall Tale once, check your clothing box. You will have earned yourself a new brightly plumed hat to don.
However, you will need to earn that commendation if you hope to earn the ultimate commendation for this Tall Tale: “A Sunken Legacy”—which will unlock those storied Magpie’s Wing Cannons!
Even more enticing: you will need to unlock all commendations for every Tall Tale if you hope to earn the highly coveted “Shores of Gold Curse”—gilding your pirate in glittering gold.
So—whenever you would like to take a closer look at the Magpie’s Wing, or take another stab at those skeletons sprouting coral reefs—visit a mysterious stranger.
Hopefully, you will receive a slightly different storyline each time you play. If one of those storylines gets you stuck, come on back! This guide can be your best first mate!
Shroudbreaker Journal Locations
If you hope to one day flash that “Shores of Gold Curse” there is a commendation you must earn, which you will not earn by merely completing the Tall Tale five times.
There is a commendation for finding the Tall Tale Journals.
Ah, yes. The Tall Tale Book is only part of the story. For every Tall Tale there are also five journals strewn throughout the shores. For the final Shores of Gold Tall Tale, there are ten!
For help finding the Shroudbreaker’s five journals, head on over to the Tall Tales Journal Guide. Alternatively, you can always use the interactive map. For each Tall Tale marker series, the final marker selection will show you the precise location for each journal in that Tall Tale.
The journals in the Shroudbreaker Tall Tale were written by a pirate you might remember from the novel “Sea of Thieves: Athena’s Fortune”—Mercia.
Discover all of Mercia’s journals, and you will earn the commendation: “Mercia’s Lost Memories.”
Congratulations on completing the first Tall Tale!
Your adventure has barely begun. If you’re ready, head on over to Olivia to get one step closer to the fabled Shores of Gold: The Cursed Rogue Tall Tale Guide.