Gaming Products I Don’t Get

Dice Towers

Call me old-fashioned, but I like to roll dice by hand. Like many gamers, I enjoy the sound of large numbers of dice being tossed. Sometimes when I am in the mood for a little dice rolling, I satisfy my craving by watching this video from Terranscapes. (The good part is from 02:06) I can kind of, sort of understand that dice towers might eliminate a player’s ability to influence the dice. That said, from what I understand, they’re used in more casual gaming settings to begin with, such as playing RPGs. I have never seen a dice tower in use for games of Warhammer 40K or Warmachine. The number of cool Cities of Death dice towers would seem to counter that, but I’m speaking from my own experience, both with local friends and at conventions.

Yet there is a huge interest in dice towers. LITKO offers its Catan-branded model seen above, CNC Workshop offers its machine-cut wooden one, naturally. If those dice towers are too pedestrian for you, then you make your own. Besides ruins, one of the most frequent Hirst Arts builds would seem to be dice towers. An old Livejournal friend cast and made many with her fiancee for her wedding. I would have loved to see the fight over those at the end of the reception.

When I see the more decorative dice towers, I do appreciate them. I want to saw off the dice trays and then use them as terrain.

Life Counters

It must be amazing that I have played one or two hundred games of MAGIC: TG without a life counter. Wait. It’s not. If any external tool was used between friends and I, it was a 20-sided die. The utility of this mechanism was put to the test by many life-gaining White, Green, and Black spells. The die was abandoned when a friend would cast Regeneration and go up to 43 Health. If I recall correctly, someone may have even been brazen enough of a life-gainer to use a d30. The other implement used was something called pencil and paper. Otherwise memory sufficed and a respect for your opponent not cheating. Of course, I never played Magic: TG competitively. Yes, there were more conversation along the lines of “What are you down to? What are you at?”, but somehow we managed. Personally, I’d rather buy more cards.

GW’s Painting Station

This is where someone else would just type “Nuff said.” If you see a Youtube video or a review where someone points out just how useful their Paint Station is, please do share it with me. You’re paying money, $40 now, more than a squad of Tactical Marines, for what? When I have read someone mentioning the product, I can never tell if they are being sarcastic about owning one and its usefulness.

Among other things, here’s something that I use for painting, an adjustable wooden tray. It too can sit on your lap. It is a bit less pricey than the dedicated Paint Station and if you’re clean enough, you can also use it to eat meals. I have several of these commandeered away from family use. One has my Eldar army in various stages of assembly, the other has my Gardens of Morr on it.

Citadel Palette and Water Pot

Privateer Press has their Wet Palette, which intrigues me. It supposedly has the special properties of not drying the paint out on it. There is nothing intriguing about the Citadel Palette, which you can buy for $4.95. Here is what I have been using to squeeze my craft paint and Vallejo colors onto: jar lids. I used to rinse my brushes in cups. Now if I need to clean a brush, I use something called the sink. If I need to wet my brush, I use something called a plastic bottle cap. One of the many charms of the plastic bottle cap, other than its cost, is the reduction in the volume of any spill. The plastic bottle cap, alas, does not not hold six brushes or feature a screw-on lid. It itself is a screw-on lid. However if those features are indeed so useful, you can get the Water Pot by Games Workshop for $4.95. To me it is another product I don’t get.

Here is what I do get about both of these GW products: they prevent the need for the customer to go elsewhere to get supplies and they might be attractive to parents.