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exinfris

How to check loaded dice

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We have a player in our group that rolls hits/crits and evades 90-95% of the time.

Some have speculated that he has altered his dice somehow, but for the life of us can't figure out how. He has even allowed us to inspect his dice after someone called foul. There's no marks or blemishes on the dice. In fact a couple people rolled the dice several times and they came up hits/crits and evades 90-95% of the time for them as well.

Maybe he has gotten lucky and picked up a set of extremely lucky dice. But for a set of dice to never go cold once seems a little odd to most of us.

Is there a way we can check them other than looking for the tell tale marks of being tampered with?

I know back in the day you could order loaded dice (had a guy in my barracks do that with his craps dice, got the crap beaten out of him when it was discovered he luck was bought from a catalog), or drill holes and add weight to them to load them yourself.

One of the other guys said he has looked online for loaded x wing dice (not to use, but to see if it's possible that this individual maybe bought some) but to no avail.

Sorry this is so long winded. Had a rather hectic day and I'm very tired.

Bottom line is...how can we check, and how did he do it, so we can call him on it if he is?

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Another way people use to make loaded dice is to put them in hot water or microwave.

You can try to put the dice in question next to dice you know they haven't been tampered with.

If the dice are altered, they will stand a few millimeters lower than the original ones, if you have them facing the loaded side.

 

Just be careful though, because if there are no obvious changes in the dice dimensions, he might not be the one responsible for the dice.

The salt water trick that others mention, will also tell you if the dice are not properly balanced.

That doesn't exclude the possibility they were manufactured like that.

Edited by tsondaboy

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Float them in salt water.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VI3N4Qg-JZM
When dice are formed they frequently have small bubbles and inconsistencies internally which can alter the ballance subtly. This method won't tell you what the dice will roll, but itll indicate if there is a ballance issue.
This is why a lot of dice nuts ban any dice which arnt clear (at least in games which dont have specific official dice made for the game like x wing).

Edited by Arterial Spray

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Get a fresh set of dice. Distract the player and swap them over. See if the winning streak continues. If it does its not the dice. If it doesn't then the dice are weighted but this does not mean the player has altered them.

Has anyone adapted the chi square statistical method for x wing dice?

I imagine you would have to mark the dice faces to do it properly. Preferably with a removable marker pen.

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Use a set of micrometers or calipers and check point to point (longwise) and the four common sides and compare them to a fresh set of dice. Also look at the faces with a low angled light. This should show any dips in the faces possibly indicating the presence of a void. A "short shot" during the molding process. This might happen if the bins holding the plastic pellets were allowed to run low or between die changes. An 'air bubble' if you will.

I'm pretty sure that the dice are injection molded and tumbled to remove the molding seam. That's why the edges are rounded. Casino dice are machined hence the sharp corners.

Finally, remember the Law of Large Numbers. Your die testing may well be within the parameters of randomness and you haven't rolled the dice enough times to truly get an adequate sample size.

If you're going to cut his dice in half, you're going to have to replace them. ;-)

Also, if you use the salt water trick remember the icons are stamped into the faces of the dice and the amount of plastic displaced may not be the same. You're also dealing with blank faces, which when floated, should be heavier than the stamped faces.

There a lot of variables to consider and even if you find a "discrepancy" it may or may not have an effect on the die roll.

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Honestly, if you've already examined his dice and found nothing wrong, then just tell him you don't want to play any more.

Because by going back to investigate them again, that's exactly what you're saying. The subtext is effectively "We know you're cheating, we just want to figure out how" and that's a pretty volatile situation to find yourself in. If you've already examined his dice then I say just let it go. If necessary then keep a record of your matches and record his dice results against the statistical averages, but I'm not sure I'd bother.

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Salt water trick has been proven ineffective on 8 sided dice. Not sure why people keep saying to use it. Have him switch dice or use his dice and see if the games still go the same way. I know when I play people think the regional sets I have are weighted better, I let them roll them, usually to their detriment.

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In two other systems I played over the years (ancients and Flames of War) it was always a giveaway if you just scooped up dice and rolled the lot. and your opponent objected.

I make a point, if my dice are rolling hot, to let my opponent use them too.

After all, they are all red and green at the end of a game. As long as I have the same number as when I started, it shouldn't matter.

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Just insist that everyone playing against him use his die and not their own. (or whatever version of that... make a house rule that when playing, nobody uses their own dice, but instead one of the players' dice will be used by both parties)

That way, even if his dice were a factory "mistake", then it would still even out.

If he objects, then he's probably tampered with the dice. (and in that case, just refuse to play with him)

Edited by OddballE8

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Back in 2008 I believe, we had a Warhammer tournament. One guy played the Dwarves with the "Anvil of Doom" that required a 4+ to activate its greater power on a D6 (or suffer the consequence of rolling 1,2,3) - he never failed. This activated one of 3 effects, he chose the one that dealt 2D6 hits - he never got below 8.

 

One of the tournament judges confronted him by asking for his dice and the guy refused. Bam, expelled - his dice were checked anyway and they were dollar store cheat dice - there were no 1 2 3 on those D6s, only 4,4,5,5,6,6. The guy even had his kid with him that day when he got kicked out. Mighty humiliation.

 

Bit harder to detect loaded D8s though.

Edited by Kalandros

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Does he use fcs a lot? Human perception is quite poor at detecting randomness.

 

This.  If you're really concerned, you need to observe his games and keep objective data to see if his outcomes are above the norm in a sufficiently large sample size.

 

That said, the best way to check is what Stoneface said: calipers.  Remember that X-Wing dice have bubbles inside them, and you could conceivably assemble a set of "favorable" dice.  Even then though, it wouldn't be enough to register in a statistically meaningful way.  Anyone using these to cheat would also have to become proficient at rolling them in a way to exploit the minuscule weight variances to have favorable outcomes above the norm.  At this point, it's WAY easier to just get better at X-Wing.

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