Fleet - The Dice Game
Phil sat on the pier, staring out at the choppy sea as if spellbound. He had just landed with the old and rickety Beechcraft at Tom Madsen Airport in Dutch Harbor. As he stepped out of the plane onto the tarmac, an icy wind hit him. He took a deep breath and the salty sea air rushed through his lungs. Ever since he was a child, he had loved the coast on the rugged Bering Sea - that was when his father had taken him crabbing for the first time.
Just this one more season, he thought. Just one more season under old Captain Harris, and then I'll have it made. Then I'll finally have the money together for my own crab fishing boat and can go king crabbing in Ridback Bay with my father's bequeathed license. No sooner said than done - and now it's our turn: we help Phil fish the king crabs and make him the most successful fisherman in the area in Fleet - The Dice Game ...
Fleet - The Dice Game is a roll&write game for 1 - 4 players and lasts about 30 minutes. As you might have guessed from the introduction, the game is all about fishing. Ready to play? Then come aboard!
For the starting setup, each player gets the two different sheets of each pad. The number of dice varies depending on the number of players. In addition, different dice are used for the boat phase and the city phase. Before the game starts, each player rolls a Boat Dice (the ones with the fish on them) and enters three crosses for the type of fish rolled. This unlocks the first license and the first boat for the player.
Basically: In each column, the rows are ticked from top to bottom.
The game is played over ten rounds. Each round consists of four different phases:
- Boat Phase
- Income Phase
- Fishing Phase (only in even rounds)
- City Phase
The dice are rolled in the Boat Phase and the City Phase. The dice are always rolled according to the same principle: the player rolls all the dice of the respective phase. Then he chooses a dice and makes a cross at the corresponding place on the scoring block. Then the next player chooses a dice and makes the corresponding cross. The last dice that remains is then available to all players. Coins rolled are recorded on the coin track. Whenever a star-shaped box is checked, a cross may be made anywhere on the score sheet according to the rules.
In the Boat Phase, boats and licenses are unlocked with the crosses entered, which trigger additional actions and revenues in the further course. In the Income Phase you receive coins and then enter them again on the coin bar.
In the Fishing Phase it goes out to sea. One fish is ticked for each boat used. The exception is the oyster boats - these catch two fish or one fish and one coin. Throughout the game, keep in mind that there is one victory point for each fish caught. In the City Phase we have other possibilities to set our crosses due to the dice:
- In the harbor we can buy e.g. boats and licenses for the valuable king crab
- At the market we can turn our previously caught fish into money
- On the shore we have numerous buildings with many effects at our disposal
Catch up the nets
After the tenth round, the final evaluation begins. Victory points are awarded for fish, of course, but also for boats, licenses, buildings and various bonuses. After everything is entered on the score sheet, the player with the most points wins.
To further vary the game there are two additional modules and an expansion:
- The Captain Cards give players a starting bonus and a personal bonus at the end of the game
- The Trophy Cards allow players to compete for the gold or silver trophy at the end of the game
- The Dicey Waters expansion adds a fishing village with new buildings to the score sheet. The buildings there can only be used if players sacrifice a coin toss for them.
Alone on the high seas
The solo game only runs for eight rounds. You compete against Captain Ruth, who tries to steal the best fishing grounds from you. The game is similar to the two-player game. However, Captain Ruth has markers on the fishing grounds, the harbor, and also on the shore. When you roll the dice, you choose a dice as usual. Then Captain Ruth chooses the dice whose symbol is closest to her marker and crosses out the lowest two options there. These are then no longer available to us. For the remaining dice, the lowest option is crossed out (coins rolled are used as wild cards by the nice lady).
With Neptune's beard
Fleet - the Dice Game is a quite challenging Roll&Write game with a great unused theme. The numerous options encourage players to try new ways of playing each game. This variance is further enhanced by the optional Captain andTrophy Cards, as well as the Dicey Waters expansion.
The age rating of 8+ is sporting. Children should definitely play the first few rounds together with their parents, as it is easy to forget something due to the numerous possibilities.
At the price of about 30 EUR you might think - expensive for such a small box, but the quality and design of the game material is correspondingly high (as you are used to Eagle-Gryphon/Skellig Games). If you are looking for a challenging family game and are not afraid of the genre, you should get it. Those who have already played Roll&Write games will be pleased about the high standard and the varied solo variant, which Fleet - the Dice Game brings along.