Changing from d8s to d6s…
Up until now we’ve been using eight-sided dice (d8) for Topexx Dominions, mainly cause d6s hate me and more often than not, I roll a 1. Imagine the shame my wizard felt when rolling a 10d6 fireball and doing a measly 10 points of damage. Sigh … but I digress. The d8 dice worked great, they gave us a nice range of options and had a good hand feel about them. Alas, d8s are not the norm and when a game already has non-standard hexagonal cards not being the norm starts adding up in the cost department. So after much thought and consideration we’re moving Topexx Dominions to d6s, plus it makes good fiscal sense. 🙂
When I was making the d8 dice many months ago, I had found a blog that described how to make custom dice. After a little searching I found the MVP Board Games blog and their design tip from Nov 2014 – Design Tip of the Week #23 (How to Make Custom Dice). I only had to quickly re-read the blog – it did a great job of laying out exactly what I needed and what needed to be done. I already had 50 blank dice so I bought a 1/2″ hole punch they recommended. I made up some sticker sheets. Once the punch arrived I sat down one evening and made 48 d6 custom dice.
But what do the dice do???
To understand what the dice do, first we need to understand how they work. The 6 sides of the dice are setup like this 1 circle, 2 circle, 1 triangle, 2 triangle, 1 triangle, 3 six-sided star. The six-sided star is the catch all, if you roll it, it always hits. The circle and triangle match battle stances on the card. Triangles are for the top and bottom stances, and circles are for the left and right stances. So if you use the top/bottom stance you are looking for triangles, and left/right stances you’re looking for circles. The triangles have a slightly higher chance of causing a hit than the circles do. When you factor in the six-sided stars, the triangles have a 66% chance of hitting, and the circles (also factoring in the star) have a 50% chance of hitting. While the top/bottom stances have greater chances to hit and do damage they are not always the strongest stances on the card. This is just one of many strategic decisions that must be made to claim victory in Topexx Dominions.
Combat is accomplished by opposing dice rolls. We went with this style because we wanted to simulate the fight scenes from action movies. The fight scene from the movie RED is a great analogy. Bruce Willis‘ character walks into Karl Urban‘s office in the CIA. Bruce starts the fight, and the two of them proceed to beat the shit out of each other. In the end, Bruce is the first to make a strategic withdrawal (he runs out of the office while Karl is shooting at him). When I first watched this scene I thought “it doesn’t matter who throws the first punch, it only matters who does the most damage.” I knew I wanted to use this in a game. In Topexx Dominions it doesn’t matter who attacks first, it only matters who does the most damage. The attacker and defender roll their respective dice, and whoever rolls the highest wins. The loser’s total is subtracted from the winner’s total and that is how much damage the loser takes. For example, if the attacker rolls a total of 3, and the defender rolls a total of 7, the defender wins the fight and does 4 (7-3) damage to the attacker.
That’s all the story I have for now. Come back later and we’ll have more to share. Be awesome and stay shiny!