Ship, captain, and crew

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Ship, Captain and Crew
Genre(s) Drinking
Players 2+
Playing time <15 min./round

Ship, Captain, and Crew (also referred to as Ship of Fools, Motha Fuc*a Jones , Gary's Dice Game, Clickety Clack, 6-5-4[1] or Destroyer) is a drinking game played with five dice. The game can be played with as few as two people, but is usually played in a group of five or more. The object of the game is to roll a six (the "ship"), a five ("captain"), and a four ("crew") with three dice, and get the highest score with the other two dice ("the ship's cargo"). Alternatively, the game may be played for antes placed in a pot. Any amount can be predetermined for ante to the pot for each round with winner taking all or the pot going forward in the case of a tie.


Assembling the "ship" and "crew"[edit]

Each turn consists of three rolls of the dice. The player must roll a 6, 5 and 4 in descending order.[2]

ex. The first roll of the dice shows a 6 a 4 two 3's and a 1
 The player banks the 6 but must reroll the 4 because there is no 5 yet
The second roll the player gets a 6 a 5 a 4 and a 1
 The player banks the 5 and 4 and now they have a full "crew" for their "ship"

Getting the "cargo"[edit]

Once the "crew" has been assembled, the player may now stop and add the pips on the remaining 2 dice to determine their score from their "cargo" or the player may re-roll one or both of their remaining dice to try to get a higher number for their "cargo".[2]

ex. If the player chooses to stop with their 6 and 1 from the above example, they get a score of 7

Determining the winner[edit]

The winner is the player at the end of a round who has the highest score.


At the end of the round everyone except for the winner must drink.

Alternatively, the winner may roll dice to determine how many drinks the losers must consume.

Next round[edit]

When beginning the next round, play begins with the player to the right (counter-clockwise) of the first player in the previous round.

Alternatively, the player who won the last round starts the next round.


The last person to throw the dice in a round is "the hammer." The current winning score is "the point." It is common to hear a player who is not keeping up ask, "What's the point and who's the hammer?"

A two is the lowest score and is called a "minimum." Double sixes, or scoring a twelve, is often referred to as a "midnight", most likely because 12 o'clock at night on a non-military clock is known as midnight. Sixes have also been known to be called boxcars. Scoring twelve after a previous player has already posted a twelve and thus forcing a draw is often referred to as "getting bit by the dream spider."[citation needed] The term "dream spider" is likely derived from the fact that the game is colloquially known as "shattered dreams" in some geographies, particularly New York City.

Players often stay with their dice after achieving a score of nine or better (assuming no other player has an established point above their nine or better), but are often subjected to elevated pressure from players with a lower, or no score at all and are advised to "man-up" and "re-roll", thus discounting proven statistics and general logic for the sake of pure machismo. However, it is important to note that in some rare cases, even low scores sometimes win.

It is possible to play this game for money, either by anteing or by playing for a set value per point.


  1. ^ "Destroyer (a.k.a. 6-5-4)". everything2. The Everything Development Company. 2002-01-20. Retrieved 2008-02-04. 
  2. ^ a b "Ship Captain,and Crew".