About Game Design: Of Dice and Games

The Romans Gamed...

The Romans Gamed...

This article is first of series of articles on game mechanics, specifically on how to use dice in your game rules.

As role players, we love our dice. Just about every dedicated gamer has a bag or two full of all colors and kinds of dice, in all shapes and sizes. Some of us, me included, have dice old enough to drink. When it comes to generating random numbers, you just can’t beat dice.

However, there is the dark side to dice: obsessive behavior over a bit of plastic and paint.  More specifically, we see GMs who abrogate their authority to the dice, players who obsess over their lucky dice and players who try to roll all the “one’s” out of their dice.

This bugaboo includes game designers. We use dice to generate random encounters, determine the success or failure of a task, resolve combat situations, and create characters, ad nauseum. Sometimes we use the same dice rolling mechanism for all these uses. Sometimes we use a different die for each. It’s all up to the designer’s tastes and what they want to simulate in their game…

Read more on this topic in About Game Design: Of Dice and Games!

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