Thursday, April 21, 2011

R: Rolling the Bones --

What little rituals do you have with your dice?

Do you have a special bag or box or suchsort container for them, maybe keep them in a specific place (or, if in a box, set out in a specific order)? Do you have certain dice for certain tasks -- one die for all your attack rolls, or one set for playing and one for when you're the DM?

Do you let other players use your dice, or even touch them? (a bit extreme, perhaps, but I've seen it in action) Or is there something, some little quirk or action, that you feel compelled to do with your dice before a game or even before an especially important roll --

It's strange how much we can get attached to these little bits of plastic (or metal, or glass, or odder things), and how much importance we place on them, all wrapped up at times in our own unique little superstitions. Then again, given that the very lives and luck of our pretendy-funtimes people depend on those dice, perhaps it's not so strange at all.

My dice live in a decrepit old buckskin pouch that I've had since, oh, grade school sometime; the very same pouch I've used since I started gaming. The cords have snapped and the leather's getting weak, but I just can't seem to bear replacing it -- a fellow geek at my worksite found me a very fetching faux-velvet bag (not Crown Royal but it's close!), but the most I've done is put the pouch inside the bag, along with two sets of White Wolf-themed dice that didn't fit in the ol' buckskin.

Along with my dice (two sets, one blue and one a weird pinkish-orange -- that second one is my DM'ing set -- and a fusty set of black Vampire dice a friend didn't want any more), the pouch contains the following:

- a faceted crystal sphere the size of a small grape, meant to be hung from a cord but the drillhole broke
- three coins: a (Canadian) penny, a Chinese coin of who-knows-what provenance and a Russian coin I found after a hockey celebration
- a thumbnail-sized beaded mouse, in silver beads with a black nose and blue eyes; it eats the dice lice (you know, the little bastards that nest in your pips and such and weight your dice)

If any of the little frobby things are taken from the pouch, I get stroppy.

I don't mind other people borrowing my dice, oddly enough, though I've gamed with people who refused to use them because they weren't their own dice. I'm not much for people just idly playing with my dice, though.

So how do you roll the bones?


trollsmyth said...

I have a doeskin bag I made back in college. It's in pretty good shape.

I'm not very finicky about my dice, because I know they hate me. ;) I let other folks borrow and touch them, so long as I get 'em all back.

I also keep a few coins in my back (some are aluminium faux coins from various SJG games) so it clinks like a money-pouch when I set it on the table.

Tomira Eliyes said...

Currently my dice are kept in a cloth drawstring bag I made. (But my oldest dice -- the ones I inherited from my first DM -- are in a jar, with other carefully preserved things like the best origami crane I ever made and feathers from my late cockateils.) My only dicebag ritual (that I'm aware of) is that there must be a penny in with the dice. It's a d2, sure ;) but it's also for luck.

I like to have multiples of every kind of die, so that if one stops liking me, I can switch it out. I used to have a d20 that was good for attack rolls and another that was for saving throws. I feel weird about using other people's dice. Once, someone I gamed with had a gorgeous firey-looking d20 that she decided she didn't want because it hated her, so it became mine, but I never gamed with it.

I kind of collect d20s, actually. At least I seem to accumulate them.

Tomira Eliyes said...

Oh yes, and I like to roll all my dice before a gmae to get them warmed up -- but I can't look at the results, because if any of them are 20s, I feel like I wasted that roll. XD I picked that one up from a guy I used to game with, I think...

Lazarus Lupin said...

I don't mind people using my dice. I tend to yell "Huzzah" before rolling.

Lazarus Lupin
art and review

Anonymous said...

I keep my dice in a drawstring bag. It is made of camouflage fabric and lined on the inside with black satin.Someone made it for me when i was 17 and I still have it all of these years :)

No dice rituals, except to treat the dice well, because they are your friend.

Chris said...

I actually have very few dice rituals.

* They do lurk in a particular place during play, but that's coz I need them to hand, not for superstitious reasons.
* I'm not anal about people using my dice. Except for the red-and-black d6 with the Eye of Sauron instead of a '1'; he's for the GM. But everyone seems to instinctively know that. ("I ain't using that. It's glaring at me!")
* People who pre-roll or 'charge' all their dice, or perform little magickqkc rituals over them just get looked at funny. ("The oracular power of dice does not work that way!" /Morbo )
* I'm not keen on people doing the autohypnotic 'roll, roll, roll, roll, roll, roll for the sake of it' thing. It's just impolite.

My dice plot the downfall of humanity from the security of a black faux-satin bag with an eye-in-pyramid motif we got with some cheapo board game years ago.

...our pretendy-funtimes people...

I move that this be made uffishal OSR jargonic synonym for 'player character'. To whom does one apply in such matters?

C'nor (Outermost_Toe) said...

I kept mine in a big pouch, that was originally used for camera lenses, but it got lost at some point (Might still find it though.). Right now I'm looking for a suitable replacement.

So long as I get them back, there's no problem with others using them.

No real dice rituals.