Dice Games
Skull
Part 8 of 11
by Mark A. Jindra

Skull

This dice game was originally played with a cube of bone embellished with a carving of a skull on one of its sides. The game is now more often played with a single 6-sided dice.

The game is simple. The player bets against the person throwing the dice rolling a 6 (a skull) at least once out of four rolls. The payoff odds are set at even money (1 to 1) which is in favor of the person throwing the die.

Double Skull

In this version the bet is whether the person throwing the dice will throw a double six (double skull) at least once out of 25 rolls. The payoff odds are set at even money (1 to 1) which is in favor of the person throwing the die.

Bloody Caltrops

A variant of this game is played by mercenaries, brigands and thieves around the campfire--either just to pass the time, or for big money in the poorer districts by people looking for a better life. Two 4-sided dice or a pair of caltrops with one spike painted red (or stained with blood) are used.

In this version, the bet is whether the person throwing the dice will throw a double four (bloody caltrops) at least once out of 11 rolls. The payoff odds are set at even money (1 to 1) which is in favor of the person throwing the die.

This game requires two 4, one or two 6-sided dice (2d4, 2d6). This game is based on dice game known as Sixes Bet, also known as Double Sixes.


Dice Weirdos

For those who missed the original article, we discussed the various superstitions folks here at Wizards of the Coast harbor about rolling their dice--and, of course, asked for your superstitions and stories as well!

A few ticks/tricks I have developed:

--Daniel

  • Leave the d20 with high numbers facing up. I don't use my DM d20 as a player, because it has been cursed to roll low for all eternity.
  • I only ever use my original 4d6, since they roll well.
  • Stick with a d20 if it is rolling poorly. Otherwise, you just start blaming everything on the dice. (I admit, sometimes when a d20 rolls horribly in a crucial situation, I get mad and "chew" on the die briefly to teach it a lesson).
  • I choose PC weapons based on damage dice. For instance, my d6 rolls better than my d8, so I tend to favor d6 weapons for higher average damage. d6 spells are great too.
  • Nobody uses my dice. Some players can curse their dice. But not mine. Never.
  • I have two rolling techniques. The rolling drop (for single low dice) and standard roll (for multiple dice and d20)
  • I prefer rolling on soft spongy surfaces, I get better rolling action and higher results.

Feedback

If you use a dice game in your own campaigns, here's your chance to share it. Send it in to: dndcolumn@wizards.com, and we may feature it in a future edition of Dice Games!

About the Author

Mark A. Jindra has been a fan of Dungeons & Dragons for over 25 years. In 1998 he landed his dream job as a web developer for Wizards of the Coast and is currently the developer of the D&D website.


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