Wizard Pouch Dice Bag

Another cool Etsy find, this hand made wizard pouch dice bag is likely to be appreciated by many D&D players.

Wizard pouch dice bag

The dice bag folds out to lie completely flat, providing a rolling surface. And surrounding the bag are eight individual pouches to hold dice. I can’t quite tell from the pictures, but it looks like the pouches are on the inside of the dice bag when it’s closed up in carrying mode — and the exterior just looks like velvet.

Personally, I think I’d rather have the pouches on the outside — I bet it’d look cooler when closed that way. But it’s still pretty impressive.

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Monster Eye Dice Bag

What 3D printing has done for unique dice, Etsy has done for dice accessories — particularly dice bags. I recently came across this truly awesome Monster Eye Dice Bag at an Etsy shop.

Monster eye dice bag

I’m considering doing a whole series of dice-related Etsy finds. Just need to decide whether to make a couple monster posts (all dice bags, all dice boxes, all dice-themed things) or break it up and have each find be a separate post.

Given how little time I’ve been giving to this site, making each one a separate post will probably make it more likely that I’ll get something up! Either way, look forward to more of these finds in the Cool Dice section.

Gemstone Dice

When i was a wee gamer I distinctly remember the first time I saw gemstone dice: they were in a glass case at my local game store and I thought they were just about the coolest thing ever.

amethyst gemstone dice

Of course, there was no fathomable way I was ever going to have the money to afford such an incredible luxury!

Flash forward a decade or two, and gemstone dice are much easier to find, and the price has come down substantially. As far as I’m aware, the original stone dice manufacturer was Crystal Caste with their “Dwarven Dice.” Their sets were (and still are) incredibly expensive, and to get the price down they offer a lot of sets in miniature sizes rather than as standard-sized dice.

Nowadays you can get the same cool stone D&D dice at full size and only somewhat expensive prices — averaging around $50 for a set, it’s still more expensive than my teenager self could have considered buying, but is now a comfortable indulgence.

Stone D&D dice

If you’re in need of a gift for a gamer, gemstone dice might be a good solution. No matter how many dice your gamer friend or loved one has, he or she will be thrilled to get dice carved from actual stone!

Borg D6?

The commercialization of 3D printing has been a great thing for collectors of unique dice. One of my favorite creators is Ceramic Wombat, and I recently noticed his Labyrinthine D6 — which to my eyes looked immediately like a Borg cube.

Labyrinth d6 - Borg Cube dice

The die is about 3 centimeters, or about twice the size of a standard gaming die. The die itself is a labyrinth — unlike a maze, a labyrinth has just one path with no choices to be made.

This labyrinth d6 actually has a single path through it that starts at the number 1, and goes around each surface of the die, touching each number in order before ending at the 6.

Honestly, it doesn’t just look great, but might provide a nice distraction when your character isn’t in the current scene and it feels like an eternity before the game gets back to you. You can order it from shapeways, but this single die will cost you a whopping $55

Cheapest Dice

While most gamers, myself included, want the coolest, unique dice that stand out, there is certainly something to be said for just focusing on price. After all, the cheapest dice out there will roll just as good as the multi-hundred dollar Artisan Dice sets.

There are two main ways to get cheap dice without ordering in wholesale (the absolute lowest price would be to order thousands of sets from China, of course):

  • The Pound of Dice, made famous by Chessex. It’s a bag of around 100 assorted dice in different sizes and colors — including a lot of clearly messed up color combinations and particularly ugly dice. You can buy it on Amazon for around $22 — which is just 22 cents per die.
    Pound of Dice
  • If you want just a single D&D set, you can get cheap opaque dice sets for under $4 per set — or about 55 cents per die.

Of course, the best way to get cheap dice is to inherit them from a veteran gamer. Most RPG gamers gather dice over the years, and usually have a pile of ugly ones they never use anymore that they’re happy to pass on to an owner who will make use of them!

Dice Necklace

As we’re coming up to Black Friday & Cyber Monday, it’s worth taking a look at one of the cool gift items: dice necklaces.

I’ve seen several different types of dice necklaces out there, by I think the coolest one so far is this lovely one for sale on Chained Creativity.

dice necklace

When you look closely, you can see that the cage that encases the d20 is just a series of rings fastened together, but it forms a really attractive bit of jewelry. The maker of this necklace makes them with all kinds of different d20s inside — just poke around her store a bit.

For other awesome geek gifts, ThinkGeek is filled with awesome stuff as always, and for non-geek shopping, you can check out Wayfair Coupons — it’s kinda like Amazon for home stuff, but with better filters making it easy to find stuff.

Stained Glass Dice

There are a decent number of awesome craft gamer products out there, and thanks to Etsy, a lot of those cool craft projects are available to buy. One of the cooler looking ones I’ve seen recently is stained glass dice.

Stained glass dice

You can buy these stained glass, hand-crafted dice over at DiceyDecor’s Etsy Store — as cool as these things are (and they’re really cool) they are too ginormous to roll, and I suspect they’d probably break if you did try to roll them anyway — the description on the Etsy store stresses that they are not intended for game play.

So these are strictly a decoration, rather than something you can actually game with. But a classy decoration, I think we can agree.

LED D20

One of the most delightful holiday gift products you can get the gamer in your life is the Critical Hit LED d20 from ThinkGeek. This is a large plastic d20 that blinks red red you roll a natural 20.

led d20

The LED d20 is totally awesome; however, in practice it’s not terribly practical. The die is awkwardly large and all the electronics inside make it pretty clearly unbalanced. You need a good amount of space to roll it (I’ve found the best way is to spin it in the air, since it won’t roll much on the table).

For day to day gaming the Critical Hit d20 it’s terribly practical; however, for special occasions, for GMs running one-off con games, and for showing off it’s awesomeness to your friends the LED d20 is a pretty sure-fire hit for any gamer.

Artisan Dice: Dice Manufacturer

I just recently discovered the amazing Artisan Dice (thanks to a comment here). This are individually machine crafted wooden dice made from fancy woods. They started as a kickstarter project trying to raise $300 to get going, and ended up raising over $90,000!

artisan-dice

These dice ain’t cheap — right now it looks like they only sell sets of 4 six-sided dice (either regular d6 or Fudge dice) and on the cheap end they’ll cost around $30 for the four dice, and upwards of several hundred dollars for a set of four, depending on the type of wood that you want.

But holy gods, these are gorgeous dice and are absolutely worth drooling over! We can only hope that as they get up to speed they add more kinds of dice to their capabilities and start producing full 7-dice sets. Update: They apparently do sell polyhedral sets; however, I haven’t yet found where on the site you can see and buy them.

From the info on their site, it looks like they’ll sell to game stores; however, they will not sell to any online dealer. So the only place you can buy their dice online is directly through them.

I suspect that if they continue to be successful, they’ll have to make a decision whether they’re a custom dice shop, or if they’re a manufacturer — manufacturers aren’t afraid of retailers competing with them, in fact the more places that carry your product the better (because you sell more and make more money that way) while the custom shop takes a much larger cut for themselves and deals in vastly smaller volumes, and doesn’t sell to stores. Note: see the comments for a discussion with Artisan dice about selling online vs offline.

Dice Randomness Tested

A great post over at Awesome Dice examines how randomly RPG dice really roll. They rolled Chessex dice and GameScience dice in two tests: one of 10,000 rolls of a d20 of each, and a follow-up confirmation test of 1,600 rolls each.

Their test showed that none of the dice rolled completely true, but that GameScience rolled more true than Chessex. However, they also stressed that the difference is incredibly small. You would have to roll over 1,000 times before you saw a difference, and even then the difference would be only 5 or 10 off from expected.

I think overall this test shows that our gaming dice all roll pretty good, regardless of the manufacturer. You can read their full write up of the test here.