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I never hear the rattling of dice that it does not sound to me like the funeral bell of the whole family.
November 10, 2008 3:16 PM   Subscribe

Zilch is a nice little (flash) dice game. Via JIG.
posted by le morte de bea arthur (37 comments total) 12 users marked this as a favorite

 
Fun, but I seem to have depressingly bad luck at dice games. The cautious computer just got >4000 points in two moves, while I got the 500 point zilch deduction twice.
posted by Citizen Premier at 3:37 PM on November 10, 2008


And now the score is 1950 to -500...
posted by Citizen Premier at 3:42 PM on November 10, 2008


Played five times, got skunked by 2-1 margins each time ... hmmm that's one lucky computer.
posted by sacre_bleu at 3:52 PM on November 10, 2008


Yeah, I don't even understand how to play this game- the rules are not explained very well. Do you get to "hold" dice, or is any non-scoring die lost with the next roll? When can/should you bank points? It's very poorly explained, so I found myself getting 0 every turn without quite knowing what was going on...
posted by hincandenza at 4:00 PM on November 10, 2008


hincandenza: There are links for rules and strategy at the top of the page.
posted by le morte de bea arthur at 4:09 PM on November 10, 2008


I like this game. The in-game tutorial seemed pretty clear to me.
posted by event at 4:14 PM on November 10, 2008 [2 favorites]


Some of that strategy page is bad advice.

Your first roll doesn't matter
The opening roll of the game more or less irrelevant as you don't have any points to lose and the other players don't have any lead on your score. You might as well take a risk you normally wouldn't on the first roll.

Yeah, that's bad advice.
posted by Richard Daly at 4:19 PM on November 10, 2008


this is good timing -- later this week a german friend who taught me this game is visiting. perhaps I can learn some strategy and not lose the game to her every time.
posted by jepler at 4:30 PM on November 10, 2008


Yahtzee!
posted by DU at 5:03 PM on November 10, 2008 [1 favorite]


Mr. Dobolina, Mr. Bob Dobolina.
posted by darksasami at 5:04 PM on November 10, 2008


I agree that, just with the game "Dice Wars" the computer is "luckier" than the human player. In Dice Wars, I think I figured out that the computer had its lowest dice thrown out while the human had its highest dice thrown out and re-rolled, but here I'm not sure what the cheat is.
posted by maxwelton at 5:21 PM on November 10, 2008


Yeah, pretty much done with the game.
posted by maxwelton at 5:29 PM on November 10, 2008


Is there an award for winning a game without winning another award?
posted by Citizen Premier at 5:30 PM on November 10, 2008


well the author swears on his blog that it is not rigged, even posting some of his source code to prove it, and after a while, I am inclined to believe him... Its that old trick of human nature: when we win, it's good luck; when someone else wins, it's cheating...

Oh, and the general mistrust of computers after playing several 'random' games where the computer really does cheat (backgammon anyone?)
posted by nielm at 5:31 PM on November 10, 2008


I'm sorry, it's rigged.
posted by unSane at 5:34 PM on November 10, 2008


Woo, I won 10500 to 2950!

I think this game would be fairer if the lucky scores weren't so high.
posted by Citizen Premier at 5:35 PM on November 10, 2008


... and anyways what's with the superfluous zero on the scores? You could easily just say 5 was worth five points instead of fifty.
posted by Citizen Premier at 5:37 PM on November 10, 2008


Played five times, got skunked by 2-1 margins each time ... hmmm that's one lucky computer.

I would attribute this to terrible strategy.
posted by clearly at 5:39 PM on November 10, 2008 [2 favorites]


... and anyways what's with the superfluous zero on the scores? You could easily just say 5 was worth five points instead of fifty.

Who wants 5 points when you can have 50?!?!
posted by clearly at 6:14 PM on November 10, 2008 [3 favorites]


This "folk" game comes under many different names.

My family has had fist fights over FSCKING FARKLE.
posted by GPF at 6:38 PM on November 10, 2008


Dice Wars is definitely not rigged. I've played enough to be pretty sure. I can win almost every time I can maintain patience to utilize the right strategy.
posted by DU at 7:04 PM on November 10, 2008 [2 favorites]


This game is great. My dad will love making everyone play it at holidays. - I'm not going to show him.
posted by Kimothy at 7:13 PM on November 10, 2008


well...there went my whole day.
posted by sexyrobot at 7:35 PM on November 10, 2008


This doesn't seem to be rigged at all. I'm winning about half the games without trying to optimize my strategy. (But I've also played this in the real world before.)
posted by Casuistry at 7:53 PM on November 10, 2008


I played dicewars a lot and won almost every time. Now wherever I play it I lose hardcore. I'm pretty sure the code changed at some point between when I stopped playing it last year and started again earlier this year.
posted by cthuljew at 10:28 PM on November 10, 2008


OK, Dicewars is not rigged. My only complaint is that it rewards an extremely conservative strategy. NEVER OVEREXTEND. Well, maybe 1 or 2 moves a game. But when I overextend it's always the first step to losing. Also, do whatever you can to entrap a part of your strongest opponent, because then it has fewer dice to spread across all its territories. If you do this conservatively and consistently you will win 90% of the time. Which is kinda dull.

This game is probably rewarding of a similar careful strategy, but I haven't figured out the odds yet.
posted by dhartung at 10:42 PM on November 10, 2008 [1 favorite]


I really enjoyed this. After a disastrous first attempt, I figured out what the idea was and it became pretty addictive pretty quickly. There's a lot of luck involved, to be sure, but it's fun.
posted by MrMustard at 6:49 AM on November 11, 2008


Well, that was fun, if a little noisy. Oh, wait, that's because I zilched probably every round!

Whenever I see the word "zilch," though, the very next thought is "Mr Dobalina, Mr Bob Dobalina..." Damn those freakin' Monkees.
posted by droplet at 8:25 AM on November 11, 2008


Ah, memories of many nights playing this game with my family. We had called this one 'Ten Thousand' and also didn't have a rule about 3 ziltches knocking you back 500 points. Good fun though.
posted by daHIFI at 8:35 AM on November 11, 2008


Also, I never heard about taking 500 if you rolled a ziltch out the gate.
posted by daHIFI at 8:47 AM on November 11, 2008


Oh, man, OK. So, not only is this pretty close to So Ein Mist! (a German game that means, basically, Oh Crap!), but it's also the soul of a game that I played a lot with a pal—Wikipedia lists it as Zonk (even with a Detroit Style) that's similar, but not exact—which involved a lot of acrobatic bong hits (including the dreaded pantsless-porch B, in which a bong hit, well, you can guess…)

I was playing this all evening, unable to explain to my girlfriend why I kept giggling.
posted by klangklangston at 10:49 AM on November 11, 2008


FWIW, I just rolled 4250 on a round with 3 free rolls against Cautious.
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 11:27 AM on November 11, 2008


We knew it as a Dutch game, but didn't know the name, so we called it Greedy Man. On a trip to Holland, we asked a local what it was called, and he said "Five Tousand" (pronunciation guide, not typo). So we stuck with Greedy Man. Nice implementation, and better rules than our version, I have to say.
posted by imperium at 12:13 PM on November 11, 2008


Well, my strategy so far is:
1. Don't get two zilches in a row. If you get 300 or more, take it every time after a zilch.
2. If you didn't zilch last time, keep going until you reach either 500 or a free roll.
3. Get lucky.
posted by Citizen Premier at 2:46 PM on November 11, 2008


Ah, and on the second roll, only roll again if you only use one die.
posted by Citizen Premier at 2:49 PM on November 11, 2008


I've never heard of this before, but I've been playing it for HOURS.... Great game!
posted by sidartha at 8:25 AM on November 12, 2008



I'm not usually interested in games, but something about this caught my attention. It DID take me about 2 hours of playing to figure out that I could keep ALL the points if I so choose. So I kept banking without picking up the extra points I could have taken.

My Strategy:

1) Even if you get 200 points for two 1's on the first roll, just keep 1 of the dice. You don't have to take what it offers you. The more dice you have for each roll, the better change you have of scoring the higher points for three, four or five of a kind. It doesn't always pay off, but it does enough to keep me doing it.
2) Don't get greedy. If you've got 350 points and 2 or 3 dice left to roll, take the 350. The little scores add up. I notice that even in the "Realist" (hardest) version, the computer takes unnecessary risk. I mean.. if you've got 700 points right there, TAKE IT.
3) And yeah, like Citizen_P said: Get lucky.

Hey, I'm not accusing the computer of cheating, but who gets two 3000+ point rolls in a row to come back from waaaay behind to win like that? Not me, that's all I'm saying.
posted by trixare4kids at 9:30 PM on November 22, 2008


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