The Dangerous Sea, Explore the Open Waters Game Review

 Game: The Dangerous Sea Player: 2- 4
 Publisher: Self Published Age: 12+
 Time: 30 minutes (varies on Random ocean build) Replayability: 6.5/10

The Dangerous Sea

dangerous sea

You’d be surprised to know I don’t own many open water games. I think the only pirate game I own may be Splendor? Also, I own nothing with Vikings more than Bottlecap Vikings. But today, I get to increase the size of my open water themed games by 1 (yay). I had the chance to try out The Dangerous Sea, a viking themed, modular board, competitive rune collecting board game! Before I get into my game play experience I’d like to express my interest in a game like this. I love the idea that I have free reign to explore the ocean, collecting crew, fighting ghost ships, and collecting resources for survival. It was a refresher from the list I’ve brought around lately (mostly because I’ve been getting a lot more novice players into the mix). While I did find a few gripes in this title, I enjoyed it.

I’ll quickly go over the how to and the components of the game and dive right into my experience. You are a viking ship travelling the dangerous seas. Depending on player count you’ll be given an amount of action points to spend on either moving to different tiles, looking at adjacent tiles, or exploring tiles for resources. Throughout the game, the game will switch seasons inviting opportunity for the sea to rebuttal to your uninvited travels. The sea can offer storms and ghost ships which will push your ship into a bit of trouble. You’ll have to hope for the best as your ship gets lodged around though rocks or pirates, or worse… into a battle with the ghost ship. The game ends when you have discovered and collected 5 runes.

I think the artwork does a good job capturing the essence of this title. It’s not necessary a heavy duty engagement but it isn’t a quick zany quest either. It operates in a great medium between the two, being one of those games you could bring out to any game night and hope to get to the table once. It’s not too difficult to learn (however the rule book is a bit overwhelming), and it does have a steady routine to progress through the games rounds. It’s a fluid state of progression, with quick actions and quick turn rotations. Keep in mind the images are based off a prototype.

dangerous seaMy Experience

I played a 2 player game of The Dangerous Sea and I enjoyed myself. The exploration was a really fun choice in development because It’s something I don’t see often. I definitely have seen exploration done in a game, but this was a vast open ocean with the game’s personality executed randomly with luck of the draw. I took the safe route on my turn by looking at adjacent locations before exploring because I was afraid of rocks, (I don’t need a titanic remake) and I am typically a safe player in most games. I wish I could say my friend was more daring but he too, exercised their movement with great caution. We did at one point release the ghost ship onto the field and spent most of our exploration crawling away from that monster. Luckily we were never attacked and we never rolled a 5 (which is an automatic attack from the ghost ship).

Final Thoughts

With the world so vast and the actions very independent; you wont find much interaction going on with your opponent unless you battle (or collectively run from the ghost ship like we did). Being said, the world is fun to build on and I did enjoy the pieces that make up the exploration. The board game offers an easy selection of tiles to get to know,understanding the game won’t be too difficult.  While still a prototype I’m under the impression the final result will be card stock. I feel the game could move a little faster but I am not sure there is much we can do about it.

You will like this game if you’re interested in a 4x title with a pirate theme. You want a sandbox style modular board game.

You will not like this game if you’re expecting something a bit smaller in size and experience. This title will ask for a lot when it comes to building the world through exploration.


Joseph Nicholas

Founder and Editor-in-Chief of Indietabletop. Communication major. Favorite mechanics include: Bluffing and Deduction, modular boards, and action point allowance. Favorite video game genres are Rpgs, Puzzles games, and Sim/Tycoons.

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