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Matt Ventre


10 TTRPG Dice Systems to Try

10 TTRPG Dice Systems to Try

    1. d20

    The most common system - precursor to modern DnD (was the system used in v3.5).

    2. GURPS

    Generic Universal Role Playing System - quite modular and has a ton of supplements and stories built around it from every type of fiction imaginable.

    3. Cypher System

    Legendary Monte Cook's generic RPG base system (powers Numenara TTRPG).

    4. PBtA

    Apocalypse system - spun off and genericized many times for other story-heavy/narrative style RPGs.

    5. Forged in the Dark

    Originally the system that powered Blades in the Dark - leans heavily into narrative style games. Very interesting hooks and player agency in this one.

    6. d100

    Similar to the d20 system, but you use a d100 instead and try to roll LOWER than your target (usually). Popular in games like Call of Cthulu and Runequest.

    7. Interlock

    This is the dice system that powers Cyberpunk games. Its base die is a d10 and you add modifiers and most rolls are made against opposing rolls (if you shoot at someone you might roll Accuracy against their Agility, for example) hence the name as results "interlock" and offset one another. Classic.

    8. d6

    This is a simple dice system using exclusively d6 or six-sided dice to determine random outcomes. Players roll X number of d6 and add modifiers, for example 4D+2 which means "the result of 4 six sided dice plus 2 extra pips"

    9. Shadowrun System

    Also uses six-sided dice exclusively, however, you don't roll and add a modifier, you are awarded a "pool" of d6 depending on factors in-game and you roll them all together. Each die is a pass or fail: usually you have to achieve a result of 4 to pass (it can be higher for harder tests) and the game master sets the number of passes for your success. Interesting amount of flexibility for game masters and players. Warhammer Roleplay uses a similar system of d6.

    10. DCC

    It's d20 base but there are WAY more crazy, rare types of dice you can use in what's called the "dice chain" - it runs from a lowly d3 up to a d30! You need special additional dice to play this system over the table, but it is a HOOT. Instead of the old DnD advantage/disadvantage, the DM can ask a player to make a check with a smaller or larger die (that is, a step up or down) so your usual d20 check might be made with a d24 if you're at an advantage or a d16 if things are going wrong!

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