Weekly Rant: Dice

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Weekly Rant: Dice

Post  Devstro on Tue Oct 16, 2012 9:45 pm

Well, my rant last week didn't go over so well. But I'll try again. Who knows, maybe this will be a regular thing. Here goes:

I can't stand dice that have special symbols on one of the faces. They really bother me. Someone, at some point, manufactured sets of faction specific dice for Warmachine. A lot of the guys I have been playing against recently love to use those dice, even if they are not representative of the faction they are playing. I hate them (the dice, not the swell dudes that I play against).

Maybe I'm the only one whose brain is conditioned to see either numbers or pips when I look at dice, but those symbols totally throw me off. I cannot quickly figure out the numbers in my head when those faces are rolled. When a "6" is rolled, I either want to see the number "6" or six dots (arranged in two rows of three, or three rows of two, depending on your perspective). I do not want to see crossed pistols, a cygnus, a menofix, etc...

When those symbols come up, my mind usually interprets it as a "1." I don't know exactly why this is. Perhaps it is because there is only one "thing" on that particular die face. Or perhaps it is because I have seen other (non-warmachine faction specific) dice tha have a symbol in place of the "1."

I know I am just a simple guy, and that most of the rest of you are not as easily confused as I am. But this has been happening to me for well over a year now; I just can't mentally process the symbols as quickly and accurately as I can process pips or numerals. Maybe I'm just getting old.

Pro Tip: If you are playing against me in a tournament, use those fancy-pants dice that have your faction's symbols on one of the faces. You can proceed to just make up numbers for each of your rolls, and I will defer to your addition.

Very Happy
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Re: Weekly Rant: Dice

Post  dcmechanix on Wed Oct 17, 2012 12:24 pm

I too got confused on these dice for a long time - I'd forget if the special face was a 1 or a 6. Having only played WM/H now for a while (and not any other games, specifically those that use non-standard dice), I'm accustomed to special face meaning 6. But yeah, if you play a lot of different games frequently or play against different players, you'll run into dice with the special face being 1 instead... and that gets confusing as hell!

If you happen to see your opponent using dice with special faces, ask them early which number the special is supposed to be. From there you're kinda on your own to remember, which indeed sucks.

Be thankful though that WM/H uses only regular d6s. I was talking with Hufferblight the other day about games and got on the topic of odd dice. Have you played any of Fantasy Flight's games? Most of those use specially marked dice with all kinds of crazy symbols on them. You need a decoder ring to figure out what you rolled!
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Re: Weekly Rant: Dice

Post  GregB on Wed Oct 17, 2012 7:22 pm

The confusion between 1 and 6 comes from card games where the ace is often used to represent the brand with one logo.

GF9 dice have the logo on the 6. Chessex makes custom dice with the logo on the 1. To me that is the main confusion factor.
I use small dice. Lately the old Rackham ones with the red dragon on the... 6. But I'm eager to find some new dice cause I'm not a huge fan of the custom dice either.

Now to decide between dots or numbers, I wouldn't know... Wink

PS : I like the weekly rant.
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Re: Weekly Rant: Dice

Post  dcmechanix on Thu Oct 18, 2012 12:07 pm

SHWTD wrote:Now to decide between dots or numbers, I wouldn't know... Wink
If you're going for classic, it's dots. I'd like to think that numbers would be faster, as you usually convert the dots to numbers in your head then do math... except its super nifty to have dots during damage rolls. It seems easier to me at least that if the roll is 3d6-4 (charging a well armored jack for example), then I can simply remove 4 dots from the roll and the rest is damage.

Personally haven't played a lot of wargames using numbered dice, but often use them during RPGs, and they seem to work fine there.
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Re: Weekly Rant: Dice

Post  Devstro on Thu Oct 18, 2012 12:13 pm

I like to roll an additional die during damage rolls to indicate the column/spiral. For this additional die I use one with numbers, while the rest of my dice have the classic pips.
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Re: Weekly Rant: Dice

Post  GregB on Thu Oct 18, 2012 2:16 pm

dcmechanix wrote:
SHWTD wrote:Now to decide between dots or numbers, I wouldn't know... Wink
If you're going for classic, it's dots. I'd like to think that numbers would be faster, as you usually convert the dots to numbers in your head then do math... except its super nifty to have dots during damage rolls. It seems easier to me at least that if the roll is 3d6-4 (charging a well armored jack for example), then I can simply remove 4 dots from the roll and the rest is damage.

Personally haven't played a lot of wargames using numbered dice, but often use them during RPGs, and they seem to work fine there.

Both ways it's math and I suck at math !! Smile

But I love both... Devstro idea is awesome, I will keep it ! Now to find dice I like...
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Re: Weekly Rant: Dice

Post  Dark Aletheia on Thu Dec 06, 2012 12:06 pm

I've heard urban tales that "pip dice" roll differently and can skew odds slightly. The argument goes that since a scooped "pip'd 6" has more material out of that side of the dice than a "pip'd 1" that the "1" side is heaver and would tend to land square with the table, while the "6" side would tend to more often come up face side up.

People who argue this do admit that the physics of it only slightly skew the odds (like fractions of one percent), but there is bias in scooped "pip dice" that aren't in others. Vegas dice, for example, have pips that are pressed on and land perfectly flat.

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Re: Weekly Rant: Dice

Post  Dark Aletheia on Thu Dec 06, 2012 12:49 pm

Wow. I just post this thing and then find the following artile about coin flips being anything other than 50/50 probibility:

Gamblers Take Note: The Odds in a Coin Flip Aren't Quite 50/50

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