Dice Games in Review — The Return of Dragon Dice

The North Seat 5E D&D Campaign Setting from Ethan Hudgens
Banner Saga Needs a Tabletop Version Pronto

For you readers who are aware of my normal interests, feel free to jump down a paragraph. If you are new to Nerdarchy or Nerdarchist Ted then you may not be aware of my obsession with plastic. Be it dice or minis I never feel I have enough. I love board games and dice games and I am always looking for new ones to add to the collection. While I was attending GenCon, there was a booth from a company called SFR. There was always a decent crowd around the tables, which is a good and a bad thing all at once for the typical convention attendee. Seeing my aformentioned obsession with dice, I had noticed there was a large punch bowl filled with dice and I was intrigued. I know some vendors give out free swag at cons and free dice are cool. So I took a closer look.


Collecting a hoard of Dragon Dice

They were doing demos for dice games I was familiar with by name, though to be honest I thought they were out of print. The games were Dragon Dice and Demon Dice. I love dice games as they add that randomness to it as well as usually incorporating some element of strategy. So when the gentleman behind the counter asked if I was interested in trying I said why not. Such a fateful question.

A short while later I was successful in my mission. I had defeated the opposing army. I had a basic grasp of the rules, which can be downloaded free from their website. This game was made by TSR many years ago, and I never really got into it even though I had a small assortment of dice. Heck, the terrain dice are just d8s so I had a couple just because they were interesting d8s.

The premise of the two-player game is each side controls an army trying to vie for control over terrain to gain better advantage and control of an area. Each army starts with 30 points, or health, worth of dice spread among the three terrains. You maneuver your army via the terrain dice to decide what the distance between the groups of fighting units are. As you battle and damage your opponent they have the option of counter attacking. Each interaction is handled with dice rolling and comparing the symbols on the dice sides. When damage happens that surpasses your opponents’ defenses, dice are typically removed from the fight.

The game is over when a player has gained control of two of the three terrains. If it is a near thing feel free to house rule you have to have all three but that is tricky. I am certain there are large number of house rules out there, or you can of course make your own. I have been playing this game regularly with my kids since I got home and even as I am writing this my son is asking when we can play again. We are still playing with the basic rules, not bringing in spells or summoning dragons, so we still have that to look forward to.

This game has loads of options depending on how deep down the rabbit hole you want to go. You can get a simple two player pack and play with two basic armies and have countless hours of an enjoyable game. You can go full collector and try to get every single die type for every army and collect the crazy variants out there. Should you choose to do so, I offer you the best of luck.

This game was initially put out by a very familiar company you may have heard of — TSR. You know, the folks who made the world’s most popular roleplaying game. The game came out a long time ago and the good news is SFR has purchased the rights, and all the old dice are still viable for the game. If you still have dice and want to see what the new rules look like head over to the Dragon Dice website to see what the current iteration looks like.

I have a few armies here and I backed their most recent Kickstarter. Knowing my Pokemon-esque behavior patterns I am guessing as time goes on my “gotta get them all” mentality will click in and I will be buying more dice and more armies. I currently have Dwarves, Firewalkers, TreeFolk and Undead. That is just four out of the 14 armies listed on the website. I wonder how long it will take me to have enough to field an army for each of the options?

A basic beginner set comes with two armies that are exactly 30 points for each army type. I recommend going slightly above that so that you have options, as the strategy comes before even the game starts. Choosing what units to field and where to field them is very important. Do you field a lot of small dice in hopes that numbers will win out, or do you field superior dice in hopes that they survive the onslaught of smaller dice? Without the extra kickers as SFR calls them you do not get the choice.

After you get hang of the game you can decide what is the right amount of dice for this amazing collectible strategy dice game. You can pick up the Dragon Dice sets directly from SFR or help us out and purchase from Amazon right here.

As always thanks for reading and until next time, stay nerdy!

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Follow Ted Adams:
The nerd is strong in this one. I received my bachelors degree in communication with a specialization in Radio/TV/Film. I have been a table op role player for about 20 years 17 of which with the current group. I have played several itterations of D&D, Mutants and Masterminds 2nd and 3rd editions, Star wars RPG, Shadowrun and World of Darkness. I am an avid fan of books and follow a few authors reading all they write. Favorite author is Jim Butcher I have been an on/off larper for around 15 years even doing a stretch of running my own for a while. I have played a number of Miniature games including Warhammer 40K, Warhammer Fantasy, Heroscape, Mage Knight, Dreamblade and D&D Miniatures. I have practiced with the art of the German long sword with an ARMA group for over 7 years studying the German long sword, sword and buckler, dagger, axe and polearm. By no strecth of the imagination am I an expert but good enough to last longer than the average person if the Zombie apocalypse ever happens. I am an avid fan of board games and dice games with my current favorite being Quarrios.

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