Learn About Powerboats

Read the official Powerboats rulebook .

  1. Intro
  2. Links
  3. Moving, Buoys, and Racing
  4. Dice: Rolling, Rerolling, Removing
  5. House Rules: Power-Turns
  6. House Rules: Two Players
  7. A Note About Quirks of this Website


Welcome to Powerboats! Powerboats is an fast, fun, competitive boat-racing board game made by Cwali. This is really one of the best racing-themed board games I've ever played, and I've played a lot! Keep reading to find out how this game works and hear about how there's more strategy to it than just rolling dice randomly.

I highly recommend buying the physical board game. Unfortunately it is out of publication. Your best bet for obtaining a copy of the game is looking through third Party websites like E-bay or the Amazon market place.

Moving, Buoys, and Racing

The goal of the game is to race around each buoy and return to cross the finish line first. The buoys are labelled with numbers one through three. You must go around the buoys in that order.

You must always move your boat in a straight line. You may face a different direction at the beginning of your turn. Once your boat starts moving you may only move in that one direction.

Your boat is allowed to move through spaces containing other boats, but you may not end your turn on the same space as another boat. If you end on the same space as another boat then move your boat backward until you are on a free space. Yes, if multiple boats are lined up you move back through multiple boats until landing on a free space. You do not take any damage passing through boats, or moving back through boats to end your turn on an open space.

If your boat moves forward and hits land your boat complete stops and takes damage. Damage taken is equal to the number of spaces your boat still had left to move. Each point of damage fills a space in your dice bank and prohibits you from having more dice. If you had five spots open in your dice bank and took 2 damage your boat may now only have up to three dice. If taking damage leaves you with more dice than you have room to bank then you must remove dice (at your choosing) so you only have dice to your bank capacity.

Again, your boat always travels in a straight line. For example: if you have three dice [1,2,2] totalling five then you boat must move in a straight line for the total of five spaces.

Dice: Rolling, Rerolling, Removing

Each turn you may choose to manipulate only up to one dice. This means each turn you may do only one of the following:

After your choose what you want to do with your dice you choose if you want to change the direction your boat is facing. Your boat can only rotate left or right once per turn.

Your movement options after manipulating your dice and seeing your speed are:

Overall your turn looks like this:

House Rules: Power-Turns

One house rule I love playing with we call "power turns." If you only have one dice in your bank (no matter if the value is one, two or three) then you are allowed to "power turn" and make two left or right rotations before moving straight.

Here's a great thread on Board Game Geek with someone discussing their own variants. Link: Formula P Variant.

House Rules: Two Players

Here's a great variant if you're just playing with two players and want to mitigate against the randomness of dice rolls. Unfortunately this variant isn't yet suited totally well for this implementation of the game online.

Each player controls two boats, and both those boats share the same engine. The first player to get both of their boats across the finish line wins the race.

Both of the boats share a dice bank. If you roll a two, then a three you can move your first boat forward two, then your second boat forward five. Or, you could move your first boat forward two, then move your first boat forward again five. You do not have to alternate which boat you move. You may move either boat during any turn. You may only move one boat per turn.

This variant is a fun way to mitigate against random, unfavorable dice rolls. Since you're moving two boats it is likely that a roll that's bad for one boat might actually be good for another boat. It is fun to have a bit of an elastic leap frog game bringing your boats together to the finish line.

A Note About Quirks of this Website

This website is a hobby project. There's obviously no money being made. Uhh, if there are advertisements when you look at this webpage perhaps talk to your internet service provider because I guarantee I did not put those there.

You'll notice that this game does not really enforce turn-order, or prohibit players from rolling multiple dice, or turning as much as they want every turn.

That's correct! This website and this multiplayer game engine do not really enforce rules of any kind. This website is built to allow people to play the game and have freedom while they play. It is up to players to choose and enforce their own rules.

Why is this implementation like this? Well, for one it is sort of easier to create. For another, if anything ever goes wrong I believe in players having the ability to correct their mistakes. I've played too many online board games where weird things happen due to bugs, misunderstandings, or poor UI (looking at you Catan). I don't like the feeling of the program trapping you in to a mistake. I hope this style of gaming makes players feel empowered about the way they choose to play the game, and perhaps feel like they're really around a physical table.

That said, this project is ever-evolving and I absolutely seek to add things that make the game more playable and enjoyable. There is a turn indicator after all. It just doesn't yet account for other-than-five players, lol.

Thank you and have fun.