Monday, December 22, 2008

Die with STYLE!

Recently I got a look at a video on YouTube featuring Lou Zocchi's GameScience dice and quite a convincing argument for buying his product. As a matter of fact my spouse has a few Zocchi dice including the coveted Zocchihedron, and I cannot find a bad thing to say about them except this.

They don't come in pretty swirly girlie colours like mine.


I started collecting those about six years ago. The original seven RPG dice came in a clear plastic tube with a black hook-top cap. Six were hot pink and the seventh, the alternate d10, was yellow. I am fairly sure the style was called "Ice Cream" or "Cream Swirl" or something of the like, and whenever I saw more of that style in my game store's loose assorted dice bins, I would buy them. Of course, being like most other things I like, they went the way of the Jolt Cola and the solid white Nikes and now are next to impossible to find except for the rare overpriced swirl pink d6 on eBay.

I suppose for myself and most other gamers, dice are like runes or Tarot cards. It is said that people who use such talismans eventually form a psychic bond with those items and therefore do not let others use them or even touch them in some cases. Mind you I'm not that kind of superstitious about my dice, but I still prefer to game with my own instead of somebody elses, even when my own seem to be playing against me.

On the other hand, I have known gamers who have a relationship with their dice that can only be described as fickle. Oh they fall in love with them at first site, but as soon as old Snake-Eyes shows his face, the pretty dice go into the trash or worse yet into some other player's dice bag. I have an estranged iridescent d4 in my collection to attest to that anecdote... but in all honesty it does not compliment my own collection very well so I just keep it around for others to use if they need a d4 and came to game-night without one.

Then there are the players who like to throw their dice when the dice do not obey their will. I have seen this happen not only in my house, but at a convention tournament, at which the act was perpetrated by an otherwise quiet-spoken and meek individual. He later apologized to the offended party, but I do not recall seeing him go crawling under the table across the room to retrieve his recalcitrant die.

That sort of thing makes me wonder what would the world be like if everybody made their dice as precisely as Lou Zocchi. What would gamers have left to blame all their missed shots, failed saves, lost spells, fumbled skill checks and low character intelligence scores on?

Pppthhhh...I suppose they'd have to blame some vast right-wing conspiracy..or the beans they ate for lunch..or the post office. Who knows!

Meanwhile, if anybody out there knows where I can score more pretty swirly dice, please drop me a message. I like having a second-string waiting on the bench for when my starter dice run out of natural 20s.

1 comment:

mbeacom said...

I know this is an old post, but I"m hoping you can help me. I've been scouring the web for exactly this kind of RPG dice. They are somewhat unique in both material, size (slightly larger) and in D20 distribution. You'll notice the 20 is "upside down" relative to the triangle shaped side it is printed on. Very rare. I would love an entire set. I've only ever found an occasional die, never a set. If you know which brand these are, I'd really appreciate it. I'll be watching this comment thread and hope the original blogger sees it. Thanks! Mike