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In 1775, Colonel Christopher Gadsden presented his design of a naval jack to the first commander-in-chief of the newly created Continental Navy. His design of a coiled serpent on a yellow background was derived from a similar design found on drums carried by the first Marines. Printed with the design was a motto that embodied the sentiment of the American colonies: 


“Don’t Tread On Me!” 


Serpents of the Seas is the second volume in the Flying Colors series of naval combat games, and represents frigate actions and the rise of the American Navy. Unlike the larger battles between ships of the line depicted in Flying Colors, Serpents of the Seas includes seventeen battles from the American Revolutionary era and the War of 1812 that involve smaller ships from tiny gunboats with only one or two cannon through “5th Rate” frigates of less than 50 guns. Also depicted are three dozen “Ship Duels” between one or two vessels on a side, like the mighty Constitution (“Old Ironsides”) against her foes Java and Guerrier. To make these duels more challenging, an all new initiative system has been created using activation cards that may grant players a jump on their opponents, but limit their flexibility in the process. The cards can also be used as events that provide additional shipboard flavor. These new systems are fully compatible with the original Flying Colors game, with mechanics that can be selected a la carte.


This web site represents the official support center for Serpents of the Seas on the Web. From here, you can download the latest rules revisions and supplementary components for the game.



The components for the game include:


  • 3 22x34” map sheets (E, F and the special Duel map)

  • 2 Sheets of 280 Double-Sided Counters

  • 2 Player Aid Cards

  • 1 Deck of 55 Initiative Cards

  • 1 Rules Manual

  • 1 Play Book

  • 1 10-sided Die




Beat to Quarters, Vol 2 is an expansion for Serpents of the Seas that provides individual tracking cards (each the size of a standard playing card) for each ship included with Serpents of the Seas. Using these cards helps reduce the "clutter" generated when using the large number of status markers on the map. The cards track sail state, damage, broadside status (fired port, starboard, or both), etc.


Additionally, Beat to Quarters provides a set of rules, markers, and charts to play Serpents of the Seas without the maps! Ship cards are organized into squadrons and then the squadrons maneuver on a special board. Opposing squadrons that maneuver close enough may fire and resolve combat per the standard Flying Colors rules. Want to play Trafalgar, but don't have the space? Beat to Quarters is the answer!


Beat to Quarters is available now, from

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