In the northwest corner of Nunavut, Canada, a formerly inaccessible bay of fof the Arctic Ocean has become reachable through a secret inlet.

Untouched by the hands of time and fed by both the ocean and warm fresh water springs, Ridback Bay is teeming with sea life. A remote, timeless bayside village is now being inundated by entrepreneurs awaiting the influx of the world's greatest fishermen to harvest this plentiful bounty.

The docks and warehouses are being revitalized, and now it is time to begin the real adventure. Go build your Fleet and become master of the high seas!


Components

  • 26 License Cards
  • 96 Boat Cards
  • 4 Player Reference Cards
  • 100 Fish Crates
  • 1 Starting Player Marker
  • Rulebook

Object of the Game

Acquire licenses, launch boats, and fish the great briny blue.

The player who best manages his resources and acquires the most Victory Points (VP) via fish, licenses, and boats will build the strongest Fleet and lead his crew to victory!


Game Elements

License Cards: License cards provide the right to launch boats and catch fish. License cards display their minimum cost and VP, and also include bonuses that greatly affect play.

There are two types of License cards: Premium (King Crab and Fishermen's Pub) and Standard (Cod, Shrimp, Lobster, Tuna, and Processing Vessel).

A full explanation of each license card can be found in the Detailed Card Information section.

Boat Cards: Boat cards are identified by the type of fish they catch. Boat cards are both launched as boats and used as cash.

The boat type, launch cost, VP once launched, and cash values are represented on the card.

Fish Crates: Each cube represents one crate of fish.

Starting Player Marker: Place in front of player who starts each round.


Phases

Each round of Fleet has five phases. Every player participates in each phase, as able, or may pass. Every player completes each phase before moving on to the next.

Phase One: License Auction

Players may purchase a fishing license from the license auction, using the boat cards from their hand as cash. The license is then placed in front of them.

Phase Two: Launch Boats And Hire Captains

Players may launch a boat from their hand (matching a fishing license they own) by placing it in front of them and paying the launch cost using other boat cards from their hand as cash.

Players may then hire a captain by placing a boat card from their hand face down on any of their available launched boats.

Phase Three: Fishing

Players place a crate of fish from the supply onto each of their captained boats that is not already at capacity.

Phase Four: Processing And Trading

If able, a player may process one crate of fish per boat onto their Processing Vessel License for later use. A player may then trade a crate of fish from their Processing Vessel License for a boat card.

Phase Five: Draw

Players draw two cards from the boat card supply and discard one of the cards just drawn.


Setup

Give every player one of each type of boat card (Cod, King Crab, Shrimp, Tuna, Lobster, and Processing Vessel) as a starting hand. Shuffle the remaining boat cards and place them face down in middle of the table.

This is the boat card supply. If at any time the boat card supply runs out, shuffle all previously discarded boat cards back into a face down stack to replenish the boat card supply.

  • For 4 players: Set aside all six premium license cards and eight randomly selected common license cards.

    Shuffle the six premium licenses into the remaining large stack of common licenses, and then place the eight common licenses that were set aside on top of the pile.

  • For 3 players: Set aside all six premium license cards and eight randomly selected common license cards. From these, remove two premium and two standard licenses from the game.

    Shuffle the four remaining premium licenses into the large stack of common licenses, and then place the six remaining common licenses that were set aside on top of the pile.

  • For 2 players: Set aside all six premium license cards and ten randomly selected common license cards. From these, remove three premium and six standard licenses from the game.

    Shuffle the three remaining premium licenses into the large stack of common licenses, and then place the four remaining common licenses that were set aside on top of the pile.


In the middle of the play area, reveal license cards equal to the number of participating players. This is the license auction.

Place the crates of fish in a pile near the center of the table. Use 25 fish crates per player. This is the fish crate supply: in 4 player games, use all 100 fish crates, in 3-player games use 75 fish crates and in 2-player games use just 50 fish crates.


Advanced Setup

Experienced players of Fleet may choose to shuffle all license cards together into one large pile (after the card removal step in 2- and 3-player setup) and proceed to the license auction setup.

If any premium licenses are revealed, shuffle them back into the license deck and replace them until there are only common licenses in the starting license auction. The very first round is the only time premium licenses are not allowed in the license auction.



Game Play

At the start of the game, randomly determine the starting player and give them the starting player marker.

Each phase is performed in turn order, starting with the first player, as identified by the starting player marker.


Phase One: Auction

The auction phase provides players with the opportunity to purchase a fishing license. Each license has a listed minimum cost on it. This is the minimum starting bid.

The starting player chooses which license from the license auction he would like to place up for auction and sets a starting bid at or above the minimum. The player to his left chooses to overbid or pass.

Once a player passes during an auction round, that player is out of the bidding for the license currently being sold. Bidding continues clockwise in order around the table as many times as needed until a highest bidder is determined.

Licenses are paid for using the cash value of the boat cards in hand and/or any license bonuses and/or processed crates of fish (see below). Complete the transaction by discarding any boat cards and processed crates of fish used as cash. If a player cannot exactly match the winning bid amount, then that player must overpay. NO CHANGE IS GIVEN!

When an auction round is over, the winning bidder may not participate in any additional auctions this phase; players can buy a maximum of one license per auction phase.

If the start player successfully won the auction, the second player begins another auction round, selecting a license for bid from the remaining license cards in the license auction. If any other player won the auction, the start player begins the next auction round, selecting another license for bid from the remaining license cards in the license auction.

If it is a player's turn to select a license card to put up for bid and they choose not to, that player is out of the bidding for the remainder of the current auction phase and will not buy a license this phase. This continues until every player has won an auction or has chosen not to buy a license. Players place purchased licenses face up in the play area in front of them.

At the end of the auction phase, once all players have paid for their licenses, refresh the auction by revealing licenses until the number of license cards in the license auction matches the number of players.

If no fishing licenses are purchased during the auction phase, remove all of the license cards in the license auction from play, and refresh the auction by revealing license cards equal to the number of players. The removed licenses are now out of the game; do not shuffle them back into the license deck.

Note: At no time may any player declare a bid that he cannot afford.


Phase Two: Launch Boats and Hire Captains

Launch Boats: Now that players have acquired licenses, it's time to launch boats and start reaping the profit from Ridback Bay. In turn order, players may launch a boat and pay the launch cost.

A player may select a boat card from his hand that matches a license ALREADY in his play area and place it face up below the appropriate license on his tableau.

The player must then pay the launch cost of this boat using other available boat cards from his hand, license bonuses, and/or processed fish as cash. Complete the transaction by discarding any boat cards and processed crates of fish that were used as cash.

Like buying a license, there is no change given for overpaying! The player must be able to afford the launch cost to launch a boat.

Each player may launch ONE boat per round, unless the player has a bonus that allows otherwise.

If a player does have a bonus that allows more than one launch, each launch must be paid for in a separate transaction (i.e., launch a Cod boat, pay $2; then launch another Cod boat, pay $2). Any launch-related draw bonuses are resolved after launching is complete, but prior to hiring captains.

Hire Captains: Once the players have completed launching boats, it is time to hire captains. A player may choose ANY boat card from his hand and place it face down on top of one of his launched boats that is without a captain.

This includes cards just gained from a launch bonus. Each boat can have a maximum of one captain. Each player may hire ONE captain per round, unless the player has a bonus that allows otherwise.

A player may NOT hire a captain if no boat is available to be captained (i.e., all boats have a captain or no boats are present). Captain phase bonuses are not drawn until after the end of the current Launch Boats and Hire Captains phase.


Phase Three: Fishing

Once all players have launched boats and hired captains, it is time to fish. Each boat with a captain, regardless of type, receives one crate of fish from the supply. Place the crates of fish on the face down captains.

Each boat, regardless of type, has a capacity of FOUR crates of fish. If a boat has four crates of fish on it, that boat is full and does not receive another crate of fish at this time.

Note: A boat must have a captain before it begins to catch fish.


Phase Four: Processing and Trading

Processing: Once fishing is complete, any player with a Processing Vessel license may process up to one crate of fish per boat. Simply take any crates of fish to be processed and place them on the Processing Vessel license.

Trading: A player may then trade a single crate of fish from their Processing Vessel license to draw one boat card from the boat card supply. This crate of fish is removed from the game and NOT put back into the fish crate supply.

Any crates of fish left on a Processing Vessel license may be used as cash toward any transaction or traded for a boat card during Trading in a later round. The cash value of each processed crate of fish is $1. Processed crates of fish used as cash are removed from the game and not put back into the fish crate supply.


Phase Five: Draw

In turn order, all players draw two cards from the boat card supply and discard one of the cards just drawn. License bonuses may apply here.

Draw is the final phase of each round. After drawing has been completed, the starting player marker rotates clockwise and the phases are repeated, starting with the auction, until a game-ending condition is met.


Example of a game in progress


End of the Game

The game ends if any of the following conditions are met:

There are not enough license cards to completely refresh the license auction at the end of the auction phase. When this occurs, the current round and all of its phases are finished, and the game ends.

There are no more fish crates available. If the last fish crate is taken from the supply during the fishing phase, finish that phase and the game ends. ALL players get credit for fish crates due to them beyond the available supply in this last round.

Players may use whatever means necessary to track these additional fish crates.

Scoring

Players score Victory Points in the following four ways:

  1. Total of all VP listed on their purchased license cards
  2. Total of all VP listed on their launched boats
  3. One VP for each crate of fish on a boat (processed fish have no VP)
  4. Bonus VP gained from the King Crab Licenses

Each player adds up his or her overall VP total. The player with the most VP wins!

In case of a tie, the player with the most launched boats wins. If still tied, the player with the most crates of fish on boats wins. If still tied, those players enjoy their shared victory.


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