Review: Fleet The Dice Game

In Fleet: The Dice Game you set sail on your fishing boat, catch as many fish as possible and develop a bustling harbor.


Eagle-Gryphon Games




Game explanation

In Fleet: The Dice Game, you set sail on a fishing boat, start catching fish and develop a bustling harbor!

All players are given 2 score sheets in Fleet. On these sheets you can cross off boxes. On most of the fields you can only cross off boxes from top to bottom. When crossing off boxes you can unlock bonuses that allow you to cross off boxes even faster! Have we caught the attention of the fans of chain reactions yet? There are a lot of them in Fleet! 

At the beginning of the game you may roll a boat die and already check off 3 boxes in that category. Fleet takes place over 10 rounds, each divided into 2 phases, the boat phase and the town phase. 

In the boat phase, you roll the boat dice. The starting player gets to pick a die first and crosses off a square in this category. Possible categories are shrimp, cod, lobster, swordfish, oysters and 3 coins. All subsequent players may also choose a die. 1 die will remain that all players may use. If you cross off a box with a bonus next to it, you may carry out that bonus immediately. A bonus could be, for example, that you can send a boat out to sea. After the boat phase you get income, which you keep track of at the bottom of the left sheet. Money you earn is crossed off at the bottom of the right sheet.

Every even round there is a fishing phase. All active boats in your fleet now catch fish, therefore you color in one fish in each active boat. Fish are worth points at the end of the game.

In the village phase, you roll town dice. This roll also includes 1 boat die. Just like in the boat phase, the starting player has first choice. In the town, you have 3 categories: the harbor, market, and wharf. If you pick a die in a particular category you may cross off a box in that category. In the town you can unlock permanent bonuses such as extra boats, extra income or victory points. At the market you can sell your fish for coins. 

On the money track, but also in other places, you can unlock stars. If you cross off a star, you may immediately cross off another box of your choice. After 10 rounds the number of points is counted. On the left sheet is a handy table for this. You get points for fish, buildings and licenses, among other things. The player with the most points wins the game!

Our thoughts

We are fans of roll&writes, especially roll&writes that offer a lot of challenge and depth like Hadrian's Wall. After reading that Fleet: The Dice Game is a bit similar to Hadrian's Wall, Fleet was on our wish list. 

Fleet: The Dice Game is fairly simple in its basis and contains clear game rules. After reading through the rules, we were able to start playing quickly. But make no mistake! The rules are simple, but becoming good at Fleet is quite a challenge. There are many options on your score sheet, especially in the first games you have no idea what you are doing. Fleet is really a game that you should play more often so you can try out different things. That way you will find out which strategy will earn you the most points! 

The game comes with 2 clear score sheets with simple artwork on them that goes well with the theme. In addition, the game includes several engraved dice that look very nice! It's certainly not our prettiest game, but the details have definitely been thought of. Fleet: The Dice Game is therefore definitely a game that draws its strength from its gameplay. 

Fleet is, in fact, a game with an awful lot of possibilities. We recognize this from one of our favorite flip&writes, Hadrian's Wall. In both games you can choose from a huge number of actions. By choosing the same category more often and crossing off boxes, you unlock more and more upgrades. In Fleet you are dependent on dice. You certainly cannot thoroughly plan your game in advance. This means you have to make tactical choices on the fly. This can sometimes be annoying, especially when the dice do not show the outcomes you need. On the other hand, we think it is a plus. The unpredictability of the dice keeps it exciting and also ensures that every game of Fleet is different. You never know what to expect. Maybe your favorite strategy is to use the shrimp, but if you don't roll it, you are forced to choose another strategy. This makes for interesting games! 

In Fleet: The Dice Game you can get a lot of chain reactions and make combos. Crossing off a certain box allows you to cross off a whole bunch of other boxes again. This is a thing in several roll&writes, but in Fleet it comes out very well. If you like this, this game is definitely recommended. The chain reactions in Fleet are very satisfying. Sometimes there are so many that you really have to keep paying attention. Unlike other roll & write games, Fleet takes quite long. This makes Fleet perhaps not the roll&write that you can grab at any time of the day to play a quick game. Our preference is therefore often for other roll&writes. But if you like challenging role&writes, Fleet is definitely a nice addition to your collection

Playing with 2 players

Fleet: The Dice Game is great fun with 2 players. You can play almost simultaneously, so you don't have to wait long for the other. Also, you can keep an eye on what your opponent is doing and try to interfere with his or her plans. In a 4-player game, you will be playing more by yourself. 

Pros and cons

+ Well balanced
+ Sleek and clear
+ Beautifully engraved dice
+ Multiple viable strategies 

- Not spectacular
- Feels the same after a lot of playing
- Takes long for a roll&write