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Welcome Back to Playtesting!

Hello and welcome to the Beta testing phase for Dreadnought! I want to give a huge thank you to all of you that played the alpha rules, provided feedback, and sent encouragement my way. I really appreciate the time you've spent on helping make Dreadnought a better game. For those just joining us, thanks for stopping by , and I hope that you'll find a fun game filled with World War I dreadnoughts, cruisers, and more! 

What's New in the Rulebook?

Thanks to the tireless alpha playtesters and their feedback, there have been some big changes and some smaller tweaks. I expected as much as alpha versions are never great straight out of the gate. As we progress and with more terrific feedback, future changes should be more and more refined. So with that in mind, here are a few of the main changes from the Alpha version:


I've moved much of the basic set of orders into the normal actions, so ships are a bit more tactically flexible. The new Orders allow you to take more of an advantage of a certain action, such as making a tighter turn. 


There's now an Acceleration rating next to the ship's speed to govern how quickly a ship can get up to maximum speed or slow down. You can also turn up to 45 degrees at the end of your movement, giving you a little more maneuverability.


I've removed the two D6s added to Strength of Hit and Armour in the resolution step in order to streamline this part of the shooting procedure. I'll be watching feedback around this change closely, as I'm not confident that I've made the right call here! 

Damage Deck(s)

Perhaps the biggest change is that the Damage deck has been split into two distinct decks: Cumulative Damage Deck and the Critical Damage Deck. Most of the existing damage formed the core of the cumulative deck, with a few additions. Cumulative damage reduces the effectiveness of your ship, while Critical Damage typically ends up causing permanent damage to the ship's systems and hull. When you consult the damage chart, you'll be directed to the appropriate deck.

Advanced Rules

Division Rules: I've fleshed out the Division rules, allowing you to take units of ships and giving you the option to play larger scale games without adding too much more time to the game (hopefully)


Submarines: I've really overhauled the submarine rules as they were pretty useless. I've added some stalking rules as well as some anti-submarine abilities to give them a proper place in the game. I've also added a sample U-Boat card for playtesting, so hopefully we'll see how they function in the wild!

Aircraft: I've also expanded the aircraft rules and provided a Short Type 184 seaplane for the British and a Zeppelin for the Germans. Hopefully we'll see some gameplay in the vertical space of the game!  

Additional Advanced Rules: There were a few advanced rules that people suggested that made a lot of sense to include. So you'll find some new ones such as, Funnel Smoke and Ramming.

These are just a few of the highlights, so I recommend that you try and "uninstall" the previous version and have a read of the Beta rules in detail.


Ship Card Changes 

Naturally, all of the updates in the rulebook will have an impact on ship cards, however the main layout of the cards has remained intact.


I've adjusted the points matrix a bit to accommodate some of the new updates and rules. I'll be keeping a close eye on the feedback around the points, so please provide as much info as possible regarding them!

New "Ship" Cards

I've made a double-sided submarine card as well as aircraft cards. The submarine should look similar to normal ships, except that its double sided depending on if its surfaced or submerged. The aircraft cards are presented vertically to make them distinct from ships, but they have most of the same sort of characteristics.



I need your help to make Dreadnought: Great War at Sea is a fun and engaging experience for players. If you've played a game with the rules below, please take a moment to fill out the feedback form below and drop by the forum to tell us how it went. Thank you, and I look forward to your after-action report!

Dreadnought PDF Downloads


This is the most current edition of the Dreadnought: Great War at Sea BETA testing rulebook. Please have a read of it and post back any feedback or questions you might have! 

Getting Started

If you're setting up your first playtest game try using the following parameters:


Fleet Size: 50 points (or just use the starter fleets below)

Table Size: 3'x3' (90x90cm) or 4'x4' (120x120cm)

Mission: Sortie

No Advanced Rules


For quick play, I'd suggest using:


British Starter Fleet:

  • HMS Orion

  • HMS Invincible

  • HMS Glasgow


German Starter Fleet

  • SMS Kaiser

  • SMS Von Der Tann

  • SMS Dresden

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