(P)review Knot Dice or They're Going To Steal These Dice!

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Ava (12 years old): What’s this?

Herb (old): Knot dice.

Lindsy (9 years old): They look like dice.

Ava: What kind of dice are they?

Herb: Knot Dice.

Ava: I can see they don’t have numbers on them, but what are they?

Herb: Knot Dice.

Ava: Can I have them?

Herb: No, they’re a game.

Ava: What game?

Herb: Knot Dice.

Lindsy: This conversation is going nowhere.

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I’m still in awe over how gorgeous these dice are. My first run-in with them happened at Dreamation, 2015 in Morristown. I spent almost all of my time in the lobby where all the cool kids hang out. By cool kids I mean all the designers of so many great games coming out. Matthias (Rampaging Jotunn), Gil Hova (Battle Merchants and Bad Medicine), Doug Levandowski (Gothic Doctor), and Matthew O’malley (Between Two Cities and now Knot Dice).

Coming out of the main gaming hall off the lobby, you’ll usually find Steven Buonocore behind a table loaded with Stronghold Games. That night, however, sitting right next to that table was a pile of green dice with a little card that simply said “Knot Dice”.

See what I mean? The first time you see them you just say WTF? Just from looking at them I expected them to weigh a lot more because they look like chiseled stone, but they’re just normal dice.

Okay, what the hell are they?

11136803_10203735316057354_1410655418_nThey’re a dice game,  they’re a puzzle game, they’re art.

Art they definitely are. I was drawn to them like a middle-aged office worker to a cabinet full of free Post-It notes and staplers. The game, in it’s simplest form (and this family’s favorite) is a roll-the-dice-and-complete-a-knot game. Each player starts with 4 dice and everyone rolls as many of their dice as fast as they can to complete a knot, when you do this call out “Knot Done!” After you make sure there are no dangling edges the player that completed the design takes another die from the center pile and play continues. When the last die is taken from the center the game ends and the player with the most dice wins.

There is an ever growing collection of games and puzzles on the Blackoak website. The children, though are stuck with Knot So Fast, the game described above.

The best thing about Knot Dice has to be how simple it is. Playing it with the kids in an attempt to distract them from beating the living crap out of each other was definitely a breeze. While they did all their damage on my glass table (yes, I should’ve thought ahead, but when you’re dealing with bite marks and children’s rabies, there’s not much you can do), the game to connect all ends repeated itself multiple times. Kids love repetition and competition (I call it rompetition), even if that means playing a game twenty times over. And if it means sacrificing my beautiful glass table (R.I.P.)

Knot Dice is on Kickstarter now! Go get it.