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Challenge: Combine Dice with Cards

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Fhizban's picture
Joined: 01/11/2009

This looks like a real headnut. Maybe we can get some kind of open discussion going about the following topic:

* the aim is to combine trading-card and trading-dice games to form a new kind of genre/game.

* to wet your tastebuds imagine a Magic:The Gathering & DragonDice Hybrid (atmosphere and flair, not necessarily gameplay or rules).

a few rules apply to narrow the possibilites just a bit:

* the game has to use both trading-dice and trading-cards, no other components.

* the dice and cards must be tied together by some gameplay defining mechanics.

* the cards are just like in standard trading cards, so they actually have to have a effect on the game (not just reminder/reference cards).

* the dice can vary in colorscheme and show icons instead of pips or numbers on their sides. although the number of faces on the dice does not matter, I would like to focus on d6. because the larger the number of faces they get - the smaller is the space for putting a nice icon on.

* last but not least the game can or cannot use a hand, a deck, different card/dice position, tapping or whatever - just like in a standard trading card game. different areas of play / zones are okay - although I would like to prevent a grid-like gameboard and of course I dont want to use a real cardboard-gameboard at all.

So thats it. I am racking my mind since quite some months about this subject - no mentionable results so far (well besides about a dozen of spin-offs that I came across while working on the subject). I am not sure how many people on the board are interesting in creating such a hybrid game, but I am definitely interesting in the creative power this community has to offer. so far I was not able to create anything that I could be proud of - sometimes its the cards that dominate an idea and othertimes its the dice. true equilibrium must be out there.

Jebbou's picture
Joined: 07/29/2008
Challenge: Combine Dice with Cards

Just throwing ideas, and brainstorming:

Idea#1: I would use Heroquest dices. And magic monster cards. And the Strength/toughness would represent the number of dices rolled. And each turn, you may roll as many dices as you have lands, and for each "monster shield" you roll, you get one mana of that color.

Idea#2: I would use colored d6 with each of the five colors, + 1 colorless side. And when you roll for defense, you roll a number of dice equals to toughness (such as above), but when you roll the color matching the color of the creature, you score a hit.

Idea#3: The cards gotta be somewhere, if not in a deck, I wonder where. They could be face-down spread on the table (such as on a grid), and cards would be events you move on. Your dices could move on cards, like heroes or monsters.

Idea#4: The cards could be placed like dominos, with symbols matching. Visualize the following: A haunted forest have the following symbols on each side:
Green mana symbol on top and bottom of card
Black mana symbol on right and left of card.

Idea#5: Each card could be used to summon a creature (dice) that would be placed on that card, based on the mana provided on that card.

Idea#6: Also dices could have advantages when placed on a card providing mana of their type, or depending on which side you place the dice you gain a different advantage. Thus, a sword icon placed on a black mana card provides the "plague" skill for the dice on that card.

Although only "Fantasy-Mana-Magic" ideas came to my mind so far, it could be interesting to search for another setup, maybe more futuristic, or realistic.


Joined: 10/02/2009
Challenge: Combine Dice with Cards

My first thought is a sort of 'mutating effect' game where the cards represtnt characters, and the dice represent potential effects that the cards can have.

Certain cards have effects that allow you to re-roll the 'community dice', and other cards have the ability to use those effects.

Other than that, all effects are determined by the dice...


Gogolski's picture
Joined: 07/28/2008
Challenge: Combine Dice with Cards

A card shows stats in different colors. The value of the stats can be found on the dice in corresponding colors.
That way, by combining the same card with another die, you have a different creature/terain/whatever.

A creature on a card could have six to ten stats. The dice could have three stats in three colors and tree bonuses in the same colors. All the stats would have an average number (say 10), but the die changes the stats of the corresponding color. The total of each die could be the same for every die (lets say 30)


=> A creature has seven stats:<br />
1] land speed     (red)<br />
2] fly speed      (orange)<br />
3] dexterity      (yellow)<br />
4] health         (green)<br />
5] defence        (blue)<br />
6] attack         (purple)<br />
7] special attack (black)</p>
<p>=> You put a die on it with folowing six sides:<br />
-] 5 (red)<br />
-] 17 (orange)<br />
-] 8 (green)<br />
-] +5 (red)<br />
-] +1 (orange)<br />
-] X2 (green)</p>
<p>The creature would have folowing stats:<br />
1] land speed     (red)    5 (or 10 when the bonus is thrown)<br />
2] fly speed      (orange) 17 (or 18 when the bonus is thrown)<br />
3] dexterity      (yellow) 10<br />
4] health         (green)  8 (or 16 when the bonus is thrown)<br />
5] defence        (blue)   10<br />
6] attack         (purple) 10<br />
7] special attack (black)  10
If you put a second die on the card, you could change other stats. In case of two dice showing different values for the same color, use the highest, so you can raise stats that have been lowered by another die. (Which also leaves you with less dice to put on other cards...)

For the no-hand-no-deck-idea, you might consider to have all the cards on the table. Some face up (which you've choosen and/or random), some face down (which you've choosen and/or random).
Activating cards or bringing them into play could be done by choosing and placing a die on the card.

Just some quick ideas, I might add or clarify more later...


larienna's picture
Joined: 07/28/2008
Challenge: Combine Dice with Cards

In the past, This idea had alread passed in my mind. Now since we all know what we can do with collectible cards, i'll talk more about the collectible dice.

1- Using them as heroquest dices, like the other one proposed, was one of my idea too. You could select dices with more attack faces than other. The problem is that it will be only the same dices that will be used.

2- The second tought it was for mana generation. You rolled a certain number of d8 that you choose at the beginning of the game and the result is the mana colors you get for this turn.

3- Since I wanted to make a more direct spell combat system, I also add the idea to use dices as common combat spells. For example, if you want to damage your opponnent and run out of combat spell in your deck, well you can't kill your opponent. In this way, the common combat spell like fireball would always be available by rolling a die, and only complex spells will be on cards.

4-Now, after an idea from another thread, somebody proposed using the dices as a unit ( you don't roll them ). Which mean that you change the facing of your dices according to the strategy you want to accomplish.

Fhizban's picture
Joined: 01/11/2009
Challenge: Combine Dice with Cards

yeah some replies within the first twelve hours. keep em coming! brainstorm what you can. and dont limit yourself too much be the restrictions I introduced in my first post. I just wanted to give you a
a guide of somekind.

okay my brainstorming, the basic game idea I got so far:

Its kind of a wargame, but you dont start with pre-defined armies, instead you build your army just like you are buidling your force in magic. so every turn you have the option to bring one or more cards into play.

one card-type are terraincards, those are placed on the table and interconnect in some way to each other. all creatures can move on those terrain cards. yours and your enemies.

another card type are the creatures themselves. but, once you play a creature card - you dont bring a creature into play. a creature card (and this rule could be true for buildings too) just enables you to "hire" the creature stated on the card from now on. and that is where the dice come into play:

each creature is actually represented by a six-sided die. those dice show symbols on all of their sides. symbols just like in heroquest with skulls and shields for attacks. but more just like in dragondice, a shoe for movement, and one or two of the possibly endless special abilities. one side of the die shows a small ID icons just like in dragon dice. this ID is a small portrait of the creature itself. it can be found on the corresponding
card. the dice are color coded to fit the elements they are aligned to. and the corresponding card is color coded too - for easy and fast lookup.

on the cards are all the basic stats of the creature-dice, as you just cant put a lot of information on a single die. and the card explains all of the icons found on the die. plus other things like the hire-cost of the creature and may restrictions (green dice can only be brought into play on a green terrain etc.)

thats all for now. just adding blobs of grey matter to the thread


Joined: 12/31/1969
Challenge: Combine Dice with Cards

I was racking my brain for about a month on the same topic, and I have come up with a rough prototype game to see if the basic mechanic works. I'm sure what we come up with will be different even using the basic premise, but I'm keeping mine under my hat for now.

One thing that I did keep in my mind the whole time was the problem (or joy if you like) with dice games, that is, lack of control. I know many dice games where you just feel the game is playing you, and you have no real control, no matter what skill you think you have the dice make or break it.

A game that wasn't mentioned tha uses dice and cards is "Guerilla", check it out on the Geek.

In games with huge ammounts of dice like avis and allies, it sort of balances out due to the sheer volume of dice used, but there are othr ways.

Fhizban's picture
Joined: 01/11/2009
Challenge: Combine Dice with Cards

Yes TrikTrak your point is right. Dice games tend to be very automatic games where the player just sits there and sorts out the results of a dice roll.

as always I like to refer to DragonDice: The game is somehow very funny, once you start to look at every single die and its faces counting the different symbols and their effectivness. that makes army building a challenging task, trying to balance the army while supporting one or two different approaches to victory.

but...once you start playing the game, the once so steep tactical rise drops into the cellar because the game is just a big dice fest. as I said, the game is fun: toying around with those dice and everything. but once your army is setup there are no really crucial decisions to make.

but, this is just one example. I am sure a designer can move a dice-heavy game into another direction.

Joined: 10/02/2009
Challenge: Combine Dice with Cards

Triktrak wrote:
One thing that I did keep in my mind the whole time was the problem (or joy if you like) with dice games, that is, lack of control.

I guess I'd try to find a way to make that random component more integral to the game...

Maybe in a spellcasting-stlye game, there are two styles of magic:

Disciplined (represented by cards). This form of magic is more about taking time and slowly learning spells that you have greater control over.


Chaotic (represented by dice). This form of magic is about learning power fast, but can be wildly unpredictable... Your fireball spell could just as easily reflect back on you than on your opponent.

So, the trick becomes a balance of both.... Learning card spells to manipulat the dice, and rolling dice to enhance the cards.

Just brainstorming...


Joined: 01/28/2009
Challenge: Combine Dice with Cards

What about using the dice to determine current conditions in the game world/arena. If it is fantasy you could have conditions that represent weather, High or low magic areas, disasters, and maybe even the current legal or political state of things (i.e.: the king has sent soldiers out to round up all bandits, so bandit cards now suffer a -2 when performing certain actions).

The dice would simply be used to alter the playing conditions of the game. And the cards are used to perform actions. You would want to include dice that have conditions and events that are beneficial to you deck, and detrimental to your opponents.

Playing certain cards may give you the opportunity to roll one of your dice. You may have a dice pool up perhaps 4 or 5 dice (Maybe even a total number of dice sides that you may make you pool with).

Seems that this would keep the strategy of the game constantly shifting, and because the dice are not used for any kind of task resolution, it maintains a high level of strategy.

larienna's picture
Joined: 07/28/2008
Challenge: Combine Dice with Cards

So, the trick becomes a balance of both.... Learning card spells to manipulat the dice, and rolling dice to enhance the cards.

One idea that just came up to my mind with the previous post would be for example in a spell casting game. Let say your wizard has a pool of dices of different faces. When you cast the spell card, it could day roll 2 dices. But it does not say which dice to use. So you can use a d4 and d6 or 2d10 according to the power you want to channel in your spell. When the dice are used, they are set aside until the beginning of the next turn. So using all your strong dices on a spell will prevent from using then on a 2nd spell the same round. The dices available would be determined by the wizard's stat, or artifact in play.

Now for the dices themselves, they can be regular dices. Or regular dices with a few special faces which could generate special effect indicated by the card. For example, let say you roll 3d8 where each die has a star face. Well maybe your spell card will indicate that if you successfully roll 2 stars, beside the usual spell effect, it does an additional effect. You could ma a series of 1 to 3 special faces that has many use, including backfire, according to various spells.

Looks cool, thanks for the brainstorming (^_^).

Joined: 12/31/1969
Challenge: Combine Dice with Cards

Here was my original idea of combining dice with cards in a game. A) players have a set of dice which they all roll randomly at the same time. B) They also have some cards in their hand. The trick is that they can only play a card by paying for it with the right combination of dice. C) So that players are not completely at the mercy of the dice, they can trade dice and cards for mutual benefit. This gives the players some control of their destiny rather than being at the mercy of the die. This may not work well in a war game.

Joined: 12/31/1969
Challenge: Combine Dice with Cards

Alright, did this discussion get quiet because I demonstrated that the idea is truly at a dead-end, or because it inspired all those who read it and they grabbed their pencil and paper and sketched their ideas down?

Joined: 12/31/1969


Wow, I read threads on this site, and it amazes me how you people can think out of the box. I'm new to this whole board game designing thing, and here you are all coming up with these crazy, yet very plausible and possibly very entertaining ideas. Hope I get there someday. Anyway, I have nothing to add to this thread as far as ideas go, I'm not well versed in trading card or trading dice games.

Live long and prosper, Qundar out.

Joined: 12/31/1969
Challenge: Combine Dice with Cards

I had an idea for a dice game that uses cards, and chips too!, that I have finished the rules for. I have posted it in my journal and I am taking any feedback.


Fhizban's picture
Joined: 01/11/2009
Challenge: Combine Dice with Cards

All I can say is that I am bringing new ideas to the paper. I have some hundreds blank dice around here and a bunch of super-small bumper stickers to print/paint icons on and then apply them to the dice.

but - the right game is still missing. I am thinking more into the "Throwing Stones" direction right now. someone mentioned something similar already in this thread:

you build your character by adding "profession dice". each die represents a profession and a character level. so take 4 barbarian dice and you have a level 4 barbarian ready for slaughter. combine 2 thief with 2 wizard dice and so on.

there would be cards too that explain what the dice too. you draw the cards from a deck and you can only bring a limited number of new dice into play depending on what cards you already played.

yep, thats it. this and maybe another wargame. i just like the idea that every dice represents one soldier. with all the stats iconized and squeezed onto the sides of a six-sided dice.

but well....dragon dice died, throwing stones died, dicemaster died, demon dice died, marvel super hero dice died.....wonder why? just because they all were collectible dice games? pah!



another idea. combining the latter with the former, that is: multi dice characters fighting against each other in a skirmish like tabletop system.

just like in magic the gathering the players start with nothing more than their deck and draw a starting hand. then they can spend a fixed number of action-points to do various things like drawing a card or bringing a card into play. depending on what cards they have brought into play they also can bring dice into play. a single dice character is at level one and it costs a whole lot of action points to add another dice (thus levelling up the character). the players could also bring locations or items into play and outfit their characters or move between some interconnected location cards. combat is done by rolling all the fighting characters dice, counting the attack and defence symbols. other symbols like magic or thiefery are used as an aditional "currency" to pay cards like spells, special attacks or subterfuge skills with. well hmm....setting up traps on the locations would be funny. maybe the characters have to control a number of locations to win the game or can trigger special actions while being there. something like: location - healing well in the forest: roll your character and for every two movement icons you spend here to drink at the well your character regains one health. okay this goes a bit too much into some kind of competitive, dice-based rpg....

guess what? work is calling.

Joined: 12/31/1969
Challenge: Combine Dice with Cards

Here's one I'm almost done developing (I hope): A dungeon crawl based entirely on cards and dice.

The characters are made by selecting cards (one Race and one Class). The Dungeon is made of cards divided in to decks for different levels (starting at I and moving to V).
The characters don't level up as they proceed, but they do gain Treasure (cards) that modify their stats and abilities.

The Dungeon is full of Challenge cards that must be overcome. Each Callenge can be overcome in one of three ways:

Might requires you to roll 1d10 plus your character's Might score (between -1 and 6) and get 10 or higher. A character can attempt the Might method as often as desired.

Skill requires you to roll a die or dice listed on your Class card (d4, d8, or d12) and beat a difficulty listed on the Dungeon card. A character can only attempt the Skill method once.

Magic automatically defeats a challenge, but can only be used a certain number of times per dungeon level.

Among the bottom deck is a Dragon that you have to defeat to win the game.

* * * * *

Random Brainstorming Idea #1:

Each player starts with 4 decks of units: the Villagers deck, the Adventurers deck, the Monsters deck, and the Summoned deck. Each type of unit has a few unique rules.

Villagers are weak, have 'summoning sickness', and when they die, they get put on the bottom of the Villagers deck (infinite supply).

Adventurers are stronger, have 'summoning sickness', and when they die, they go away forever. Adventurers often have special abilities which alter gameplay.

Monsters are about as strong as villagers, don't have summoning sickness and when they die, they join the enemy's army (they get beaten into submission and retrained).

Summoned creatures are about as strong as adventurers, have no summoning sickness, and die at the end of the turn in which they are summoned. When they die, they get put on the bottom of the Summoned deck (infinite supply).

At the beginning of the game, each player (who has custom-constructed their decks) assigns 1d4, 1d6, 1d8, and 1d10 to each deck.

At the beginning of each player's turn, the player rolls for each deck, then must draw from any two of the decks (including the same deck twice if he desires). During that turn, the player may either play a card (which must have a value equal to or less than the die he rolled for that deck that turn) or reassign the dice to different decks.

(Alternately, make the die assignments doesn't really matter. I like the flavor of being able to spend time adjusting your 'supply lines', but the fixed assignments lead to greater importance of deckbuilding, which some people really like.)

After doing this, he may attack. The rules for attack and defense I'll leave as an exercise for someone more wargamery than myself.

* * * * *

Random Brainstorming Idea #3:

Each player has a "wall" of cards of 4 different colors. The wall starts 3x6 or so, with equal distribution of colors (but put in a pattern decided on by the player). Each player also has a set of six dice, each of which has 3 sides of one color and 1 side of each additional color.

Each player's turn consists of rolling one die (his choice), and selecting a card of that color. That card and all contiguous cards of the same color are removed from the opponent's wall and, like Tetris, all cards 'above' the destroyed card(s) (from the perspective of the opponent) move 'down' to fill the gap(s). Then, that player draws 1 card from a deck of colored 'wall' cards and places it in front of him, on the top of his own wall.

The first player to burrow a hole all the way through his opponent's wall wins.

Hope that'll getchya thinkin!

Fhizban's picture
Joined: 01/11/2009
Challenge: Combine Dice with Cards

I just realized that I should have chosen the thread title a bit better. Personally I wanted to focus the thread around collectible games.

but - know what? i dont care anymore. this turns out to be some great brainstorming and we already have a small collection of ideas and tidbits.

so keep them coming! thread-death is quite common around theese boards, so do your best saving this threads destiny.

just a quickie:

you use a chessboard and place dice on it instead of chesspieces. does anyone remember the old computer game archon? so yeah, some kind of archon remake where one player controls light while the other controls darkness. both players field dice labelled like goblin, knight, phoenix, golem. and both players have a wizard each, capable of casting various spells. the pices - err - dice can move around the gameboard and the face that is currently up is used to keep track of their lifepoints. both players use a small deck (maybe 30 cards each) that contains the spells of their wizard. the spells can be used to harm each other or to revieve/heal own units. two dice fight against each other just by rolling them and comparing the results (defined, as always by icons or symbols of different numbers and colors). the target is to kill all of your opponents dice, or to kill your opponents wizard or to occupy 3/5 important spaces on the the board - the so called points of power. each point of power you control (and you control it by placing one of your dice on it) increases the amount of spells you are able to cast. the advanced game could introduce a flexible deck building system and the ability to choose wich dice you want to bring to combat. (in archon the creatures both sides brought to battle were pre-set, as were the spells the wizards could cast).

Joined: 12/31/1969
Challenge: Combine Dice with Cards

OK, on the CCG tip:

The game represents one of a neverending series of conflics on the border of two nations ready to go to war at any moment.

The dice represent a small border patrol. The cards represent the special actions available to the members of the patrol. Both are collectable.

Each patrol consists of 10 units. Each unit is a die that may have between zero and three of each of the following symbols:

Sword - melee attack (roll 1d6. On a 1, this unit dies. On a 4+, target enemy unit dies.)
Net - incapacitating attack (roll 1d6. On a 2 or 3, target enemy unit must reroll. On a 4 or 5, target enemy unit cannot act next turn. On a 6, target enemy unit dies.)
Bow - ranged attack (roll 1d6. On a 5 or 6, target enemy unit dies.)
Palm - healing effect (roll 1d6. On a 6, restore target unit to life.)
Flame - offensive spell (roll 1d6. On a 6, two enemy units die.)
Wall - control spells (roll 1d6. Choose a number of enemy units equal to your die roll minus one. Those enemy units may not act during the next turn.)

Each turn, a player chooses one unit to act, and performs the action corresponding to the symbol showing on that unit. Alternately, instead of taking any of these actions, a player may instead draw a special action card or play a special action card. Special action cards require a specific set of symbols to be used, and they cause all units providing those symbols to be rerolled.

The game is won when one side has no units left.

The special action deck must be exactly 40 cards, and can have no more than 4 of any given card. Each player draws 2 special action cards at the beginning of the game. Special action cards are drawn in one of two ways: when a unit dies, that unit's controller draws a special action card, or, a player may draw a special action card instead of taking a normal action during his turn.
Used action cards are shuffled back into the deck as necessary.

Sample units:

Berserker - d4 - Sword x3, Bow
Mage - d4 - Flame x3, Wall
Healer - d4 - Palm x2, Net x2
Archer - d6 - Bow x3, Sword x2, Net
Irregular - d6 - Sword x2, Net x2, Bow, Flame
Paladin - d6 - Sword x3, Palm x2, Bow
Cleric -d8 - Net x3, Palm x3, Sword x2
Wolfriders - d8 - Sword x3, Bow x2, Net x2, Wall
Soldier - d10 - Sword x3, Bow x3, Net x2
Adventurer - d10 - Sword x3, Bow x2, Net x2, Palm, Wall, Flame
Archmage - d12 - Flame x3, Wall x3, Palm x3, Net x2, Sword
Ranger - d12 - Bow x3, Sword x2, Net x2, Wall x2, Palm x2, Flame

Sample special actions:

Perfect Strike
Requires: Sword
Effect: Roll 1d6. On a 1, acting unit dies. On a 2+, target unit dies.

Perfect Shot
Requires: Bow
Effect: Roll 1d6. On a 3+, target unit dies.

Perfect Capture
Requires: Net
Effect: Roll 1d6. On a 1-4, target unit cannot act next turn. On a 5 or 6, target unit dies.

Perfect Restoration
Requires: Palm
Effect: Roll 1d6. On a 3+, target unit comes back to life.

Perfect Burn
Requires: Flame
Effect: Roll 1d6. On a 5+, two target units die.

Perfect Illusion
Requires: Wall
Effect: Choose five target units. Roll 1d6 for each; on a 2+, that unit cannot act next turn.

Hit 'em high, Hit 'em low
Requires: Sword, Sword
Effect: Target unit dies (no die roll).

Sniper Shot
Requires: Net, Bow
Effect: Target unit dies (no die roll).

Induce Fear
Requires: Wall, Flame, Net
Effect: All of your opponent's units must reroll.

Ponder Options
Requires: Palm, Flame, Wall, Sword, Net, Bow
Effect: Draw 3 more Special Action cards.

Berserker Charge
Requires: Sword, Sword, Sword, Sword, Sword, Sword
Effect: Choose three opponent units. Roll 1d6 for each. On a 2+, that unit dies.

Massive Trap
Requires: Net, Net, Net, Net, Net, Net
Effect: Roll 1d6 for each enemy unit. On a 2-5, that unit must reroll. On a 6, that unit dies.

Wall of Fire
Requires: Wall, Flame
Effect: Choose five opponent units. If any of those units act next turn, they die at the end of the turn.

Meteor Strike
Requires: Flame, Flame, Flame, Flame, Flame, Flame
Effect: Roll 1d6 for each enemy unit. On a 6, that unit dies.

Paralytic Wave
Requires: Wall, Wall, Wall, Wall, Wall, Wall
Effect: Roll 1d6 for each enemy unit. On a 3+, that unit cannot act next turn.

Restorative Effort
Requires: Palm, Palm, Wall
Effect: Two units return to life (no die roll).

Charm Spell
Requires: Fire, Wall
Effect: Target enemy unit performs it's standard action, but you may choose it's target (it may not target itself).

Hail of Arrows
Requires: Bow, Bow, Bow, Bow, Bow, Bow
Effect: Choose 2d6 enemy units. Roll 1d6 for each; on a 4+, that unit dies.

Gate to the Afterlife
Requires: Palm, Palm, Palm, Palm, Palm, Palm
Effect: For each dead unit on your side, roll 1d6. On a 3+, that unit returns to life.

Rattle Foes
Requires: Sword, Net, Bow, Palm, Flame, Wall
Effect: Opponent must discard two randomly-chosen special action cards.

Of course, this game starts with lots and lots of symbols available, but not that many special action cards. Towards the middle of the game, things get hectic as each side has plenty of units left to provide symbols and has drawn several action cards (due to unit death). Then, in the closing, the problem is not what action cards are available, but what symbols the player can roll.

With both the dice and the cards as collectable resources, and the huge variety of strategies available (from the all-mage army with a deck full of Meteor Strikes to a mixed army relying on card advantage from Ponder Options and Rattle Foe), I'm excited about this idea.

Joined: 12/31/1969
Challenge: Combine Dice with Cards

Here's another random idea for the CCG dice/cards concept:

Each player is a dragon, an ancient creature that combines the ultimate in both physical and magical perfection. In this game, the dice represent the dragon's physical abilities and the cards it's magical ones.

Each dragon has a set of four dice, all d6s. Each die has between zero and four of the following symbols:

Claw - Physical attack (power 5).

Fang - Breath Weapon (power 2d4).

Spell - Cast a spell.

Wing - represents a dodge (avoids either attacks or breath weapons)

Scale - represents armor (avoids either attacks or offensive spells)

Eye - represents willpower (avoids either offensive spells or breath weapons)

Each round, both players rolls all of their dice, and, if necessary, place facedown on the table the spell they are choosing to cast.

Each player then chooses which of his opponent's attacks he is going to apply his defensive dice to. This is done before rolling the value of any breath weapons and before revealing which spell is being cast.

After all assignments have been made, spells are revealed, breath weapon damages rolled, and each each player determines how much damage he has taken.

Each player's spelldeck is also his dragon's hit points. Each point of damage he takes makes him discard one card from the top of his spelldeck or from his hand (his choice). Whenever a player runs out of cards, that player loses.

Each player draws 5 spell cards at the beginning of the game, and draws another any time he casts a spell. (Choosing to discard from your hand to conserve your spelldeck permanently reduces the size of your hand.)

Spelldecks must be exactly 40 cards, and can have up to 8 of any given card.

Sample spells:

Shuffle 7 cards from your discard pile into your spelldeck.

Shuffle 2d6 cards from your discard pile into your spelldeck.

Pierce Defense
Target Eye, Scale, or Wing die cannot be assigned this turn.

Halt Attack
Target Claw or Fang die cannot be assigned this turn.

Cancel Spell
Target Spell card has no effect.

Your opponent must reroll and reassign all dice. This effect takes place before any other damage is dealt.

Arcane Feedback
Your opponent takes 14 damage, and you take 2d6 damage.

Eldritch Blast
Your opponent takes 4d6 damage, and you take 7 damage.

Magical Assault
Your opponent takes 7 damage.

Energy Burst
Your opponent takes 2d6 damage.

Paradigm Flux
Shuffle your spell cards back into your spelldeck and draw 5 new spell cards.

Reality Shift
Your opponent must shuffle his spell cards back into his spelldeck and draw 5 new spell cards.

Charge Claw
If your claw attack hits this turn, it deals an additional 2d6 damage.

Empower Breath
If your breath attack hits this turn, it deals an additional 7 damage.

Mighty Spell
Choose another spell you are casting this turn. If that spell deals damage to your opponent this turn, it deals an additional 2d6+7 damage, but you take 2d6 damage yourself.

One of your dice (not the one used to cast this spell) may be changed to any result you choose. Reassign all dice accordingly before calculating damage dealt.

So, a Dragon might consist of these four dice:
3x Claw, 3x Bite
Claw, Bite, Spell, Wing, Scale, Eye
3x Spell, Wing, Eye, Scale
2x Scale, 2x Wing, 2x Eye

And these cards:
8x Charge Claw
8x Empower Breath
8x Pierce Defense
8x Contemplation
4x Paradigm Flux
4x Surprise!

Or these dice:
4x Spell, Claw, Bite
4x Spell, 2x Eye
4x Spell, 2x Scale
4x Spell, 2x Wing

And these cards:
8x Halt Attack
8x Meditation
8x Arcane Feedback
8x Eldritch Blast
8x Mighty Spell

Common dice would have a wide spread of symbols and tend toward a balance of offense and defense. Rare dice would have more 3- and 4-of-a-kind per die and be weighted more toward either offense or defense.

Common cards would be damage dealers, healers, and die cancellers. Rare cards would be damage adders, die manipulators, and card manipulators.

This game doesn't have quite the interesting progression of play as my last idea, but the simultaneous nature of the action ensures that no one goes off to play Super Smash Bros. while the other player tries to calculate his best possible move, and the "character creation" inherent in the Dragon-building process adds a kewl semi-RPG element that might prove attractive to some people.

Fhizban's picture
Joined: 01/11/2009
Challenge: Combine Dice with Cards

Wow, hey essence thats a lot of stuff! I have not read through all of it yet but it seems to be some good work. Thanks for the creativity boost.


so after reading through the last two ideas I have to say that I like them both. They both look like they would be expandable, the former game is like dragondice while the latter is more like chaos progenitus. I like how you managed to integrate a deck of trading cards into both games. what I dont like (oh my god - criticism) is the fact that you need additional dice other than the trading dice themselves to play the game.

another brainstorming session:

one of the ideas I am playing with is a combination of both types. thus you control one or more characters, and each one is composed of one or more dice. right now the background theme would be superheroes, although monsters or giant robots ala battletech would also be an option.

I dont want to discuss all of the rules in detail but you can imagine that you can expand the superpowers of your hero by adding more dice (blast dice, shield dice, item dice, speed dice, teleport dice etc.)

the main problem that I am facing when working on card/dice hybrid games is that the dice related gameplay mechanics are insufficient, thus the possibility well dries up soon IMHO.

what we do have is bonus+, malus-, wildcard symbols, rerolls - each of them in various flavours and thats it. you just have to combine the dice mechanics with traditional card mechanics (draw, discard etc.) to get a wide array of design freedom.

nothing worse then a system that is its own cage.

so far, my 2 cents.

Joined: 12/31/1969
Challenge: Combine Dice with Cards

Hey all,

Funny reading this thread, as its something I've been playing around with for a while!

I was toying with the concept of a scifi/fantasy/whatever wargame where the terrain is dictated by drawing a number of terrain cards (terrain gives certain units/types advantages/disadvantages) and laying them in a grid, and you then use the dice themselves (with printed stats on them or a stat-card) as your units. You then have a number of actions you can conduct during a turn dependant on a factors such as the size of the game, a race specific value, the mission being played etc. Certain units could also be allowed to make "instinctive" moves or "standing orders" (e.g. scouts are always allowed to make a "move" action into an uninhabited region) which dont affect your 'command points pool'.

Players would construct a force (of dice units and commander/support cards) based on a simple points value, these could be even or they could be affected by the mission the players decide to play, or skill level etc.

Players would also require they're own constructed deck of "strategy cards". BAsically a deck of cards containing special strategems or tactics. Players get to draw a certain number (1 or two maybe?) every turn, but can spend unused command points to get more - This allows a degree of balance when sides become significantly uneven, for example when a player is loosing a lot of units, he can spend his additional command points on more desperate strategems to try and claw back victory (given that he isnt usign them to move or utilise units!

Victory is generally by total elimination of the enemy, but could also be based on capture of certain terrain features (castles, bunkers, several objectives, destruction of certain enemy units etc.) or a timelimit. The mission being played could be drawn from set of mission cards before the game is setup - detailing the mission and any special terrain setup instructions etc. This means that players have to pick a balanced force capable of playing most missions successfully, or risk totaly defeat (to avoid the accursed MTG: "he with the most money to buy powerful cards wins" scenario...). I also had the idea for "night" battles or missions, where all or some of the terrain is left face down until a unit enters (or in the case of a scout type unit, borders) it when it is turned over.

Strategy cards could include anything from airstrikes, booby traps, fire and flee, bonuses, re-enforcements, medevac units, and could be "race" specific - or contain different strategy effects on the same theme dependant on race, in order to theme a players force (e.g. the healers card could have two effects - when used by humans if allows them to heal a friendly unit, but if played by an undead player allows them to "steal" a dead enemy unit or some such :D)

Distribution? Random packs of cards/dice - maybe a couple of strategy cards, a couple of dice + Stat cards, and a couple of terrain cards. Starter packs to include a couple of race description/rules cards (humans and martians, barbarians and romans, dwarves and elves, whatever!) a starter terrain deck, and two balanced starter armies of dice.

Rare cards could include special terrain cards (castles, minefields, whatever), named characters, special units (with corresponding dice), a set of colelctable "background" cards detailing the history of the game world, art cards, and useful "one per deck maximum" strategies.

Oh, and to avoid requiring non collectable dice to play, all dice are D6, and have a tiny number on each face in the normal 1-6 setup in addition to the other artwork, so you can use any spare dice to roll results on :D

Thats the basics anyway, theres a load of other stuff I have in my head/doodled on some paper etc. Must order a big bag of protoparts dice and knock up a prototype!


Joined: 12/31/1969
Challenge: Combine Dice with Cards

i dunno if anyone said this yet, bc i only had time to read the first half of the posts, and wanted to post my idea before i forgot. cards are for the sake of example; soldiers. they have stats representing their abilities in combat and such. the dice represent weapons and/or equipment. if a soldier has say an assault rife the die would have 3 faces that each say 4 on them. if you roll and it comes up a 4 you deal 4 damage. different guns could have different hit chances, or even varying damage scores, a wildly inacurate weapon that sprays alot of fire at a very high rate of fire, could have 5 faces with the numvers, 1,1,2,2,3. for damage. you could also use the position of a die on the card to sigify things, like if it is at the top of the card the soldier is in an attack position, and a defencive position at the bottom.

i'll read the rest of you posts later i have to go now, i just wanted to spit out this idea i am actual very ecited about. thanks for the idea!

Joined: 01/04/2009
Challenge: Combine Dice with Cards

reading this post made me think that the dice need more speciality. I was thinking that maybe the player could "play" dice kinda like cards. They have a set of dice which start out weak, and every turn, maybe, the dice are rolled to represent the actions your cards can do (like casting a spell or meleeing an enemy). Every card wuold then have stuff like melee and spell damage/abilities. then more/better dice could be introduced with the more enemies killed or something like that (like, if a wizard dies it allows the player to "build" two points worth of dice, where better dice are more expensive).

Or maybe there could be "mana spots" that are always there and fought over and having control have certain mana spots lets you use more points worth of dice on your turn. Maybe certain weaker monsters could do the same. And dice could also have special rolls that either let creatures do special stuff (like exploding) or did it without a creature (like making a fireball appear out of nowhere). Hope this ranting helps :)

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