The entire playing area is broken down into different parts of a ship. The leader explains the location of each part. For example
- Bow: the front of the playing area
- Stern: the back of the playing area.
- Port: the left side of the playing area
- Starboard: the right side of the playing area
Special actions are explained. For example:
- Submarines: Players run to the centre of the playing area, lie down on back, and raise one foot in the air.
- Lifeboats Port: Players run to left side of playing area, form lines of 4, sit down and begin to row.
- Lifeboats Starboard: Players run to right side of playing area, form lines of 4, sit down and begin to row.
- Man Overboard: one person on all fours, their partner with their knee on the back of the other player, hand at their forehead like they are looking for something.
The game begins with everyone standing in the centre of the area. When the leader calls out one of the above parts of the ship, all players must run to the designated area. The last person to reach the spot is eliminated, and goes to help the leader. Each time a different part of the ship is called, the last player reaching the site is eliminated, until one player remains.