So, I've been thinking and playing a lot of dice games lately. They are so plentiful! I've been trying to determine what it is about some dice games that I enjoy and what I don't to help me determine future game purchases. This little exercise is to help organize my thoughts. If you think you know your dice games you can have a peek at my recent GCL geeklist here for fun.
So first what types of dice games are there?
First there are "push your luck games". These are total luck fests with little strategy except maybe playing the odds. They tend to be fillers. They have to be fun! and fast! Examples of games I enjoy: Can't Stop, Deep Sea Adventure, Lords of Vegas to some extent.
Next, I'm not sure what the proper terminology is but I'll call them "games where you cross stuff off". Yahtzee falls here which I loved playing as a kid but I find much less interesting now. Current games in this category I like include: Qwixx, Rolling Japan. Roll Through the Ages: The Bronze Age and Roll Through the Ages: The Iron Age which are both enjoyable but sometimes feel a touch long to me to be favorites here.
"Rolling dice to get more dice" is my next category. Some of these seem more luck based and others slightly more strategic. Roll Through the Ages: The Bronze Age might also fit here but it's not a favorite for these kind of games. I'd say To Court the King and Nations: The Dice Game feel a bit too luck based for me. I played Ciúb once and it felt a bit longish but I should try it again. Age of Craft is kind of interesting. Like To Court the King you use dice to buy tiles/cards that let you manipulate or gain dice but it adds a dice draft which adds to the game. Of course Roll for the Galaxy really ups the ante in adding to the basic use dice to get more dice. There is a reasonable amount of strategy and tactics that can go into the game which throws it into the fourth category.
„Of course Roll for the Galaxy really ups the ante in adding to the basic use dice to get more dice.“
My fourth and last category is dice as workers or dice as a significant portion of a strategic game. I suppose you could put games like Kingsburg and Alien Frontiers here. I found these a bit too dependent on luck for me as well as being a bit tedious. I enjoy The Castles of Burgundy and The Voyages of Marco Polo quite a lot, here the dice roll is plays a part but not as much as the placement. Discoveries is the newest one. It kind of straddles the line between my third and fourth categories. I think you could also put the classic Chase here.
I think I tend towards more strategic dice games and filler. But I think there is room in my collection for more! Now what to pick up at Essen that has dice?