Live and Let Die: d4

Being the first of many profiles on the polyhedral life our favorite dice. This week: the d4.Poor four-sided die... He's truly the runt of the litter. Though he seems to invoke pyramid power, he is doomed to be called "3-sided" by noobs, and stare up at confused faces who can't tell what number he landed on.

Real name: Tetrahedral Die
Nickname: Caltrop
Uses: Mostly D&D and derivatives. Represents crappy weapon damage and the feeble health of magic-users (no time to go to the gym when you're studying magic).
Beloved because: Though extremely hard to spin (a popular time-killing activity for gamers), the dreidle-like d4 IS spinnable and is the most impressive to see.
Hated because: Doesn't roll very well. Just... drops really. Plops. And if plopped on the floor, beware your tender feet.
Biggest rival: The 4-sided prism.
The d4 remains traditional and will always be included in polyhedral sets thanks to its small size, but the prism actually rolls and can, in a pinch, be used to represent a precious gem.

Now if you'll excuse me, I've got something sharp in my shoe.

4 comments:

Darius Whiteplume said...

For Giftmas I got the Chessex "Pound O' Dice" and there were no d4s. Not even in the "complete" set the bag included. Very weird.

Siskoid said...

d4 on the wane!

Philo Pharynx said...

Roman d4's for the win! These are dodecahedrons with I, II, III, IV three times each. Because they are roman numbers, you don't get these mixed up with d12's. They roll well, they're easy to read, they're much less painfull when one of them drops to the floor and you step on it.

http://www.chessex.com/Dice/Specialty%20Dice/4_sided.htm

Anonymous said...

It's the only dice that gives problems to rookie players. They throw it and say: "uh, which is the number?".

Roger

 

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