Design challenge: Rainbow d6s

I’m an obsessive dice collector, and an even more obsessive hoarder of ideas, tables and mechanisms.

I thought it might be fun to propose a challenge involving both. So here’s the idea.
You have 6 dice, red, orange, yellow, etc.

Give or take a few white ones, black ones, bigger or smaller ones… You can throw in other polyhedrals, so long as the main mechanism is coloured d6s.

The challenge: design a piece of RPG “tech”, whether it’s an RPG, a rich oracle roll, a way to get inspiration, a table, anything, that primarily involves the coloured dice.
Mix it with things like the Hazard Die, Alarm Dice, or come up with something unique.

coloured dice

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My first offering is an earlier version of my RPG, Glasspunk. You rolled up to 6d6, depending on what factors advantaged you, usually rolling 2-3. Highest number is result, 1-3 bad, 4-5 mix, 6 good, 66+ crit.

  • Red: Devil’s bargain
  • Orange: Help from someone else
  • Yellow: Situational advantage
  • Green: Useful gear
  • Blue: Skill or Aspect
  • Purple: Odd, unique Power
    glasspunk v0.41

Another idea was to roll dice, and decide the temperament or personality of an NPC, by the “four humours”, the OCEAN model, or even Hogwarts Houses.
OCEAN dice

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Magic is made possible by an innate ability to provoke surges in the elements available in your immediate surroundings. Each dice corresponds to a different element — aqueous blue, tellurian black, fiery red, airy white, living green, holy purple.

Spells correspond to different combinations of elements at different levels. “Blast of flame,” for example, requires 4s on both red and white. Mastery of the magical arts consist in the ability to control the admixture of elements when provoking a surge.

When a player wants to cast a spell, start with the full array of dice, then remove any elements that aren’t available in the immediate surroundings — e.g. no blue in the desert; or impose a penalty on rolls for scarce elements — maybe you can draw some water from nearby cacti, but not much, so subtract 3 from the blue result. Players can draw elements from their inventory (e.g. water in a canteen) but only at the cost of using up their supply. The full contents of an inventory slot are required to provide enough element to roll an element not available in the environment.

Based on the available dice, the player chooses a spell and rolls the dice they need from the remaining pool. If they roll exactly the spell cost, the spell is successful. If they roll something other than the spell cost, they can cast the resulting spell instead, or adjust the totals using their Magic pool, increasing or decreasing the result on any given dice by one pip for each Magic point. So if you need 3-4-3 but you’ve rolled 1-6-2, you can “spend” 5 magic to adjust the numbers to what you need.

If you don’t have enough Magic to tilt the roll all the way to the spell you want, you can still cast the combination you did roll, or tilt it to one of the options within the range made available by your available Magic. Once you’ve rolled, cancelling a spell costs 1 Magic for every result of 4 or higher.

Reminds me of SEACAT, the system by Luka Rejec. (More of a fun comparison than anything.)

Oooh I adore these.

Heres one for setting creation!
Roll each dice and interpret the result to how it relates to settings themes/world/component…

Red : Violence, Strife
Orange : Warmth, Kindness
Yellow : Nature, Terrain
Green : Wealth, Fecundity
Blue : Structure, Built-World
Purple : Society, Complexity