In 2022 I took in several new core rule books for roleplaying games (RPGs). Only in one case, Twilight: 2000 4th Ed. (Free League Publishing, 2021), did I purchase a boxed set and get the by-design dice for the game. As I looked across the other games I purchased, I ended up taking inventory of them (and a few further back) to determine what dice I needed. In every case I already have dice in my collection that can work, but maybe I want to get a “set” for each game? So for no other reason than to justify new dice purchases, here is a Select RPG Dice Inventory.
Select RPGs and Their Dice
Code Warriors (NerdBurger Games, 2023)
- (Unknown Game Engine)
Rules recommend 6d8 per player. The GM doesn’t need dice as they don’t make any rolls. As part of the Kickstarter campaign Nerdburger Games is selling a set of six custom dice in a tin box that looks really nice…
Needed – I have enough d8 in my collection that I can scrounge a set of six, but if I don’t get the custom dice why not get a matching set of Chessex dice (in ice blue?) for each player?
Blade Runner: The Roleplaying Game (Free League Publishing, 2022)
- Year Zero Engine (modified)
- Polyhedral d6 thru d12 (Attribute Die, Skill Die, Gear Die)
The Year Zero Engine used in Blade Runner is a modified version that uses different size die for Attributes, Skills, and Gear. In a test, you roll an Attribute die + Skill die + Gear die (if applicable). Player Characters can also assist by lending a Skill die. This basically means you need 4x d6 thru d12 each on hand to make rolls.
At the Ready – I use two sets of Sirius Dice (Spades and Maple Leaf are close to the Blade Runner color scheme) for the Attribute and Skill dice and have another set of something on hand for the times extra dice are needed.
Cepheus Deluxe (Stellagama Publishing, 2021)
- 2d6 OGL Sci-Fi
- 2x d6
Bog-standard 2d6. Used to be able to say, “Dime a dozen” but the last time I purchased a Chessex 16mm d6 Dice Block (12 dice) it cost $3.85.
At the Ready – I have a handful of the Traveller RPG die on hand so I always have enough. Oh yeah, more than a few Dice Blocks too.
Five Parsecs from Home: Solo Adventure Wargaming, 3rd Ed. (Modiphius Entertainment, 2021)
- Five Parsecs From Home Game Engine
- d6, d10, Percentile
See how I snuck a wargame onto this list? It was easy, since this Adventure Wargame has some limited character creation elements in it. No special dice needed, just 2d6, 2d10, and Percentile if you don’t want to use two different color dice for those occasional percentile rolls.
At the Ready – I have so many sets of d6 and d10 and Percentile this is no problem…
Twilight: 2000, 4th Ed. (Free League Publishing, 2021)
- Year Zero Engine (modified)
- Polyhedral d6-d12 (Base), d6 (Ammo), d6 (Hit)
At the Ready – The boxed set comes with 2x d6-d12 each as well as 6x d6 Ammo die and a single d6 Hit die. All are custom dice. That should be enough…at least for a single player.
ALIEN: The Roleplaying Game (Free League Publishing, 2020)
- Year Zero Engine
- d6 (Base, Stress)
Skill levels go up to five, so you will very likely not be rolling more dice at once than that.
At the Ready – Absent the custom dice, I use a set of Chessex 16mm in two colors, Black/White for Base Die and Yellow/Black for the Stress Die.
Cortex Prime: Game Handbook (Fandom Tabletop, 2020)
- Cortex Prime Game Engine
- Polyhedral d4 thru d12
Cortex Prime uses a Dice Pool system so you probably need 3-4 of each die type for the group to play. In other words, each player needs to bring their own!
At the Ready – I have more-than-several die sets that can work here…
The Expanse Roleplaying Game (Green Ronin, 2019)
- AGE (Adventure Game Engine)
- d6 (Base, Drama)
The AGE core mechanic calls for rolling 3d6 with two 2d6 of one color and a single d6 of another color representing the Drama Die.
At the Ready – Any d6 will do as long as you have two colors.
GENESYS: A Narrative Dice System Core Rulebook (Fantasy Flight Games, 2017)
- GENESYS Game Engine
- Polyhedral Narrative Dice (d6, d8, & d12 with custom faces, one set for Positive Dice – Boost/Ability/Proficiency and another set for Negative Dice – Setback/Difficulty/Challenge) as well as d10 and Percentile.
GENESYS is the game engine that powers the Star Wars Roleplaying Game series. FFG sells a set of GENESYS dice that consist of 3x Ability, 2x Proficiency, 2x Boost, 3x Difficulty, 2x Challenge, and 2x Setback.
At the Ready – I have found I need one set per player…but be ready to share on some rolls. After purchasing several starter sets and extra dice sets I have enough dice on hand for four players.
Atomic Robo: The Roleplaying Game (Evil Hat Productions, 2014) / Mindjammer: The Roleplaying Game (Modiphius Entertainment, 2014)
- Fate Core System (called Fudge in Mindjammer)
- Special d6 Fate Die aka dF (2x face “+”, 2x face “-“, 2x face “blank”)
Fate Core recommends each player have their own set of four Fate Die..In rolls, this produces results ranging from +4 to -4.
At the Ready – I have something like four or five sets of Fate Die in the collection.
Did you know…FUDGE was once an acronym for Freeform Universal Donated (later, Do-it-yourself) Gaming Engine.. When first published FATE was an acronym for Fudge Adventures in Tabletop Entertainment, then in 2nd edition, Fantastic Adventures in Tabletop Entertainment. Most recently FATE is not considered an acronym anymore.
Traveller 5.0 (Far Future Enterprises, 2014)
- Traveller 5 System
- nd6 based on Task Difficulty or Purpose;
In the T5 System the Difficulty ranges from Easy (d6) to Beyond Difficult (8d6, but 11d6 if the Task is considered This is Hard! and done Extra Hasty).
At the Ready – Fortunately, I have enough of those special Traveller RPG dice in my collection!
A Song of Ice and Fire Roleplaying: A Game of Thrones Edition (Green Ronin Publishing, 2012)
- Chronicle System
- d6 (Test Die, Bonus Die, Penalty Die)
Using Chronicle players roll a number of d6 based on the Ability being tested, with Bonus Die adding d6 and Penalty Die taking d6 away. Since the maximum Ability score is Rank 8 (Mythic) and some creatures have can exceed rank 8, and you also need extra Bonus Die, you probably need a pool of 12d6,
At the Ready – One Chessex 16mm d6 Dice Block with 12 dice works for each player!
Space 1889: Red Sands (Pinnacle Entertainment Group, 2010)
- Savage Worlds Game Engine
- Polyhedral d4-d20
Core rules recommend one set for each player and several for the GM (one for each villain).
At the Ready – Those “spare” die sets work here too…
Thousand Suns (Rogue Games, 2008)
- 120 Game Engine
Core rules recommend 2d12 for each player plus “a few more for the GM.”
At the Ready – More than a few d12 on hand…but not that many to support a large group. BYOD (Bring Your Own Dice)?
To Buy or Not to Buy; That is Thy Question
So, I guess I have lots of die “At the Ready.” Does that mean I really need to buy more? OF COURSE IT DOES! I “lack” the custom dice for Code Warriors, Blade Runner, and ALIEN. I already found some good substitutes for ALIEN and Blade Runner but need to seek out a good substitute set for Code Warriors. Of course, if the opportunity to purchase the “official” dice presents itself I will just “have to” buy them!
Feature image courtesy RMN