I wanted to spice up my version of Sleeping Gods and I did so by introducing dice.
The way the fate mechanic currently works is that you decide which (if any) crew members you want to help you with the current task. Then, you flip over a card from the fate deck and add the number to your crew members skill in that task and you check whether that is enough to succeed or not.
Nice and simple.
But it’s not nice enough.
Like a lot of people, I enjoy rolling dice and so I wanted to see if I could figure out a way to change the fate mechanic to allow dice instead of the deck of cards.
And I found a solution.
Concerns and answers
First of all, you may be wondering: Why? Why would I want to change up quite a core mechanic of the game?
The way that I see it, there are really two main reasons (aside from money) for why you wouldn’t want to do this.
1) You lose the strategy of equipping low-fate cards to your crew members in order to increase the chances of drawing high-fate cards.
In my experience so far, this hasn’t really been an issue. The amount of cards that you are equipping isn’t really enough to make a big difference in the overall proportions. Or maybe it does, but it’s not really noticeable – and therefore it just feels better to be free to equip any card you want to.
Also, you only really go through the deck about once before you have gone through the event deck and are forced to discard all the equipped cards.
Therefore, I don’t really feel like the strategy is all that important.
2) With cards, you can look through the discard pile as well as your hands to better calculate the risk.
This is very true. However, I have just simply found that we don’t do this. There are too many cards in the deck for us to feel it necessary to calculate the risk every time. Instead, we just hope that everything works out.
There is already an official dice variant included in the rule book that says that you can roll a regular d6. However, by doing this, you are adding waaaay more randomness into the system than necessary. In the fate deck, there are half as many ones and sixes as all the other numbers, but that’s not the case with a d6.
This results in higher chances of failure (rolling a one) as well as higher chances of success (rolling a six). If that is what you want, then go for it! Let the Sleeping (dice) Gods decide your fate.
However, there is a way to use dice and still keep the proportion of numbers correct.
The cheap solution is to simply use any regular d10 by following this table:
|Die roll||Converted fate number|
But that means that you have to calculate every time you roll the die, and that is not what you want from a system where you want to be able to see if you have succeeded quickly.
The expensive solution is the one I have done. I went to www.boardgamesmaker.com and ordered one custom d10.
I bought the 16x16x24 d10 and it’s the perfect size. Before getting it, I was a bit worried that you wouldn’t be able to read the number on the faces, but it works amazingly.
The die itself was $7.20 and shipping was $9.99 for a total of $17.19 for a custom die.
Oh, and this is something I only thought of after receiving the die. You no longer need to spend money on sleeving the fate deck. Normally, it is very important that you don’t know what number is on the other side of the card, but now that the deck is only used for drawing ability cards, it’s no longer imperative to sleeve them. So, I guess that’s also money saved?
|No need to sleeve the cards||Pricey|
|It’s fun to roll dice||Less strategic|
|Custom die is custom fun||Every game uses dice – Sleeping Gods doesn’t. Let it enjoy that.|
|No need to shuffle|
Also, make sure to check out my storage solution guide for Sleeping Gods.
1 thought on “Sleeping Gods – A Better Dice Variant”
Your comments about the probability calculation of cards (knowing what has already been drawn) inspired me to do a bit of maths. I created a probability calculator (and shared on the BGG page).
as an FYI…
default probability (including using the dice you created)
Drawing at least a 4 = 50 % chance
probability after a few example rounds, and assigning ability cards to characters (3 Fate 1 Cards, 2 Fate 2 cards, 1 Fate 5 cards all removed)
Drawing at least a 4 = 53.7% chance
so, honestly not much difference (which favours your variation of using a dice doesn’t affect the probability that much,) Even when MANY cards are drawn, the random types of cards drawn mean that the overall % doesn’t change that much.
probability after a few example rounds, and assigning ability cards to characters (4 Fate 1 Cards, 7 Fate 2 cards, 2 Fate 3 cards, 8 Fate 4 cards, 6 Fate 5 cards, 1 fate 6 cards all removed)
Drawing at least a 4 = 46.8 % chance
sorry, but i like maths in board games.