Monday, 2 December 2013

My Dice Rant

Dice with pictures on one of the faces. Why? It might look pretty, but it makes the dice far less functional that it should be and, in some cases, creates unnecessary confusion. How so? Because some manufacturers put the picture on the six, and others put it on the one. Sure, after a few goes you remember what the picture means, but in the heat of a game it's annoying to constantly have to do the translation ("Little flag means six").

I mean - here are four dice with pictures or images in place of the one or the six. In three cases it's the one. In one it's the six. But which is which?

Spots or numbers, please. Anything else just isn't required.

These are sensible dice.

(Note: I have picture dice in my collection, mostly from shows or tournaments where they were given out as freebies. I never use them.)


  1. I have some Flames of War dice where the symbols are sixes and others where the symbols are ones. Same manufacturer, same game... I love it!

  2. The elephant is the one (i'm pretty sure). i have several of those exact dice. i hate them.

  3. I've seen a Flames of War player using official FoW dice and use the 'symbol' as a 6 AND A 1. Until it was pointed that he was a cheating bastard. He knew he was doing it.

  4. Can't agree more- it's bad enough in boardgames but to import it into tabletop wargames.... grrr



  5. I like the second one from the left in the first picture. If I got to roll it I'd claim the full 25 pips...
    Snh, snh, snh... Meanwhile in this earthquake ridden town (Christchurch) a friend decided he wanted dice with a seismic symbol replacing the '6'. Guess what. They replaced the earth trembling '1'...

  6. John T said

    In some ways I agree, but the image needs to be considered. I have some with a skull and cross bones as the "1", this means when I roll them I see my fate being the low number.

    I have some others with a Panther tank as the 6, great when playing WW2 as Germans. I feel it represents a solid hit with a high velocity 75mm round.

    so any symbols should be on the 6 in my opinion.

    john t

    1. "so any symbols should be on the 6 in my opinion"

      But they aren't.

  7. No I'm with John on this one - Particulalry when the symbol is of your unit or nation when it shows up it should be good news - which is generally a 6!

    1. Not all games or game processes have high numbers as good. So unless you have two sets of dice, your 'good news' mnemonic doesn't work.

      If the dice are there to provide numbers, they should have numbers on all faces. Not things that other players have to remember to associate with numbers.


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