Expanding Beyond Oak & Iron

Published: Thursday, November 26, 2020 - 11:00 | By: Adam Potts
More Ships More Fun

Oak & Iron is a ship tabletop wargame that lets you recreate fierce battles in the age of sail. We follow up our Oak & Iron Core Box review with a look at all the different Oak & Iron expansions and what they can add to your games.

This article forms part of our Nautical Tabletop Month that's running across all of November. We're going to look at different nautical wargames and board games, as well as interview developers about capturing the sea feel on the tabletop. We'll also look at nautical factions in popular wargames along with tabletop accessories that are available to keep your hobby ship-shape. You can see all the articles here on the hub. So come aboard as we set sail and celebrate all games nautical in nature.

Firestorm Games

You can buy all the Nautical Tabletop Month products from our tabletop sponsor, Firestorm Games.

Oak & Iron Core Box.

Oak & Iron Core Box

The Oak & Iron Core Box contains everything that 2 players need to play Oak & Iron. It requires no additional tools or components beyond what’s included unless you want to expand your fleets further. It is also playable out of the box, as the ships are single pieces with clip-in sails and bases and the rules can be learned as you play through your first game.

 
 

The Core Box contains:

  • 6 plastic ship models (Light Galleon, Petit Frigate, Fluyt, Brigantine, Corvette, and a Sloop)
  • 5 Nation cards (England, France, Spain, The Netherlands, and Pirates)
  • 19 Admiral cards
  • 46 Upgrade and Captain cards
  • 39 Initiative cards
  • 15 Event cards
  • 21 scenario cards 
  • 6 Oak & Iron Custom Dice
  • 1 set of 5 movement tools
  • 1 range ruler 
  • Tokens and counters
  • 17 Double-sided terrain tiles
  • 3x3 foot sea mat

A copy of the Core Box is required to use the rest of the expansion listed here, and you can find out all about the Core Box in more detail in our Oak & Iron Core Box review.

Oak & Iron Gentlemen of Fortune.

Oak & Iron Gentlemen of Fortune

The Gentlemen of Fortune expansion includes 3 of the 6 ships from the Core Box. It includes the ships, ship cards, and additional tokens and ident markers.

  • Petit Frigate
  • Corvette
  • Sloop

This expansion is perfect if you want additional ship types from the Core Box. The ships in this set are the smaller, faster, and more maneuverable from the Core Box.

Oak & Iron Merchant Men.

Oak & Iron Merchant Men

The Merchant Men expansion includes 3 of the 6 ships from the Core Box. It includes the ships, ship cards, and additional tokens and ident markers.

  • Light Galleon
  • Fluyt
  • Brigantine

This expansion is perfect if you want additional ship types from the Core Box. It contains the more gun heavy ships from the Core Box with the highest fortitude and broadside values.

 
Oak & Iron Men of War.

Oak & Iron Men of War

The Men of War expansion includes 3 larger ships than those in the Core Box. It includes the ships, ship cards, and additional tokens and ident markers.

  • 4th Rate Ship of Line
  • 5th Rate Frigate
  • 6th Rate Frigate

This expansion is perfect for adding ships with more cannons but still keeping speed and maneuverability. The ships are 13, 16, and 23 points respectively, and go from 5 to 8 broadsides.

 

Oak & Iron Ships of the Line

Oak & Iron Ships of the Line

The Men of War expansion includes the 3 largest ships available. It includes the ships, ship cards, and additional tokens and ident markers.

 
  • 1st Rate Ship of Line
  • 2nd Rate Ship of Line
  • 3rd Rate Ship of Line

This expansion is perfect for adding big guns to your games. But they come at a price. They go from 37 to 58 points, and from 9 to 11 broadsides value. The larger ships have sailing value 2 and they all have the Weight of Fire and Very High Freeboard special rules which reduce the target's fortitude rating and make it harder for your opponents to cause fatigue on these ships.

 

Oak & Iron Blackbeard's Revenge.

Oak & Iron Blackbeard's Revenge

The Blackbeard's Revenge expansion includes 2 named pirate ships and another pirate admiral. It includes the ships, ship cards, and additional tokens and ident markers.

  • Queen Anne’s Revenge
  • Revenge
  • 1 Stede Bonnet captain card

The Revenge was commissioned by Captain Stede Bonnet, and the Queen Anne's Revenge was the flagship of Blackbeard, who's card is included in the Core Box. This pack is obviously designed for Pirates and the ships are as you would expect, small, maneuverable, and packed with guns for their size.

The Revenge is particularly nippy in the water and the Queen Anne's Revenge, when commanded by Blackbeard, is great at reducing fatigue on itself and nearby friendly ships. Captain Bonnet is a cheap and solid captain, able to reroll up to 3 dice on attack and skill tests.

Oak & Iron Additional Card Decks.

Oak & Iron Additional Card Decks

There are 3 additional card decks available digitally for Oak & Iron from the Firelock Games store.

  • Admiral Deck - The Admiral Deck includes all of the faction named Admirals from the Core Box and 18 new neutral admirals. The neutral admirals come in 3 ability levels across 6 types. Bold, Lucky, Strict, Persistent, Inspiring, and Brilliant, each at Untested, Experienced, and Seasoned to add more flexibility in your fleet construction.
  • Upgrades Deck - The Upgrade Deck contains the same 23 upgrades as the Core Set, plus 11 additional ones including Marines for when you really want to board that ship, and Agressive Crew, for when you really really want to board that ship. It also has Downgrades, like Poorly Armed, which sounds like fewer guns to us, which is always an awful idea.
  • Initiative Deck - The initiative deck is the same as the Core Box. Perfect for anyone splitting the Core Box, or for expanding the Core Box into 2 or more player games.

The Additional Decks are great for adding more options to your games, and especially worth it if you're looking to split the Core Box between 2 players, or expand Core Box games to more players without buying another Core Box.

Oak & Iron Dice and Deluxe Templates.

Oak & Iron Dice and Deluxe Templates

The Oak & Iron Core Box includes card movement and range markers and 6 dice. If you want more durable movement tools, then there sturdy acrylic movement tools available and an additional dice set to double the amount of dice you have.

Both sets are particularly handy if playing with 2 players out of the Core Box, as you won't need to share dice and tools. If you're upgrading to the bigger ships from the Ships of the Line and Men of War expansions, then you're going to want your own, plus more dice anyway just to be able to roll for all those cannons.


The copies of the Oak & Iron Expansion Packs used to produce this article were provided by Firelock Games.

 


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A Potts TechRaptor
Tabletop Editor

Adam is the Tabletop Editor for TechRaptor. He's been involved in the video game and tabletop industry since 1997, including managing communities, flavour text writing for CCGs, game development and design and has played physical and digital card games at a high competitive level.