To Boldly Nerd…

Video games, pen&paper RPGs and other nerdery

RPG: Roll the dice – a review

| 1 Comment

As a GM and tabletop player, I love dice. I think everyone who gets to play falls in love with dice. There’s something that really speaks to a gamer, rolling dice for something. My RL Pathfinder group, most of them newbies, get super-excited when it’s time to roll, and why shouldn’t they be? Dice are fun, and thanks to dice manufacturers, there’s an incredible variety of colors out there.


So color me super excited when I received an e-mail from the guys at Easy Roller Dice if I’d be interested in reviewing some of their dice. Of course I was! I had a fun time picking them up at the customs office. Try explaining RPG dice and reviewing them to a bureaucratic customs officer. But I was able to take them home and opened them in delight.

I received three sets of dice: The Black Ice 7pc set, the Purple Marbled 7pc, and the Legendary Copper Metal Dice.

The 7pc sets both came with a nice black cloth dice bag, with satin lining. The bags are fairly small, but they’re definitely a lot nicer than carrying them around in a clear plastic case, which is usually what dice come in. The bags draw cat hair like heck, but then, what doesn’t? I live in a very cat-hairy household, thanks to a very fluffy Mo.

Matches our African violet nicely, doesn't it?

Matches our African violet nicely, doesn’t it?

Of the two dice sets, I really enjoy the purple marbled the most. They’re really gorgeous, a nice, rich purple with incredibly crisp numbers. I didn’t perceive any flaws with that set of dice. We were testing them on Saturday, in our last game session. My SO used them and I sat across the room at my own GM table. I was able to read her dice rolls quite easily, which doesn’t happen with the Chessex dice she usually uses (for reference, she’s using Chessex Gemini Blue&Purple). They’re just not as legible as the Easy Roller dice. As consequence, my SO claimed them after the game, to keep as her own. sighs It was really noticeable, because we play in dimmed light sometimes, and the other players had to pick up their dice and look more closely at their die results.

The dice bag that comes with it on the right.

The dice bag that comes with it on the right.

I had no issues with the purple set at all, but I had some with the Black Ice set. They’re also beautiful, and just as crisp as the purple set, but there were some flaws. The numbers were not painted as crisply, as if paint was missing in some spots, and one of the dice had a white stain, as if from the paint used to color the digits. The color of the dice doesn’t quite match my expectations from the photo on the site, being a slightly different shade of blue. They’re still lovely but not my favorite set.

In this photo you can compare how well you can read the dice, compared to our Chessex dice

In this photo you can compare how well you can read the dice, compared to our Chessex and Pegasus dice

Which brings us to the Legendary Copper Metal dice. Presentation is awesome. The dice come in a leather display case that’s velvet-lined. The dice are protected by styrofoam. If you remove the foam, you can store a lot of dice in there, but I think I’ll keep the foam. The dice are pointy, with relatively sharp edges, but it’s not as if you cut yourself on them. Still, make sure the D4 is not near your eye when you slam your head on the table when your group is doing something you completely did not expect to happen. Ahem.

The Legendary Copper Dice in their display case and the dice cup

The Legendary Copper Dice in their display case and the dice cup

The dice, in a standard 16mm size, are absolutely gorgeous. I can easily say I have never owned such luxurious dice before. They have a rich copper finish. I think that will only improve with the years of use I hope to get out of those babies. The size seems a bit off, but that might just be my impression. The D6 seems incredibly large compared to the other dice, especially compared to the D4. The dice are fairly heavy and roll with a satisfying ‘thunk’. As my GM table during last week’s session was a glass table, I only used the metal dice on the Ultra Pro Dice Tray I own (which is awesome, btw), so I wouldn’t damage the table or the dice. I don’t think they would scratch up a wooden table, but I would generally recommend a dice tray for them, if not the Ultra Pro, then maybe this one right at Easy Roller Dice. If you are in the market for metal dice, I highly recommend them. They look great, they feel great when you roll them, and the display case is a nice extra-added value. They have a variety of metal dice on their site.

This is the dice tray that I use, velvet-lined.

This is the dice tray that I use, velvet-lined.

The final sample I received was a p/u leather dice cup. It’s black, branded with the company logo and has blue velvet lining inside. It’s sturdy, a lot sturdier than the two leather dice cups I already own. It’s a perfect addition for the metal dice. It came with a small set of 5D6, so if we’re ever playing a round of Yahtzee, I am set, hah. I honestly would have greatly preferred if the brand logo was not on the cup. I understand why they used it, but I honestly would prefer the cup without it, or maybe with a smaller, less prominent print. I also would have liked if it came with a lid, like comparable dice cups from Koplow and Q-Workshop do. Maybe they’ll drop the logo in the future. Still, for that price, you get a fantastic dice cup.

As you can tell, the D4 really looks tiny compared to the massive D6

As you can tell, the D4 really looks tiny compared to the massive D6

For total value, I think the dice can easily compete with Chessex or Pegasus (a German brand), and I would prefer them to Q-Workshop dice. The latter are absolutely beautiful, with a variety of specialty dice, for example Legacy of Fire and Rise of the Runelords dice (the two Pathfinder Adventure Paths I am currently GMing), but my number one issue with them: very hard to read. Gorgeous to look at, honestly, but if I have to squint to read them, not worth my time. I didn’t know how important it is to read dice until I tested these dice.

I will likely never get any of these dice again, unless they get a German distributor, but if they did have one, I’d highly recommend them and pick up some more marbled sets. My players all liked them too, and I think there was some envy about the metal dice for sure. 😉 If you’re in the US, I would definitely give them a shot.

Disclosure: I was not compensated for this post, however I did receive free samples for my review. All opinions are my own and not influenced in any way.

One Comment

  1. Pingback: Blooming Dice | Mo' Fluff, Mo' Fun

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: