Tabletop RPG dice set: Platonic Solids 5 Elements

D4, D6, D8, D12, D20 and D10s with element cards from the game “Aquarius” and a collar pin.

想太多了 / overthinking post. If interested, read on for excessively long and nerdy explanation.

This is my custom-ordered RPG dice set based on the Platonic solids and their corresponding elements. I’m surprised that nobody seems to have done this already, because tabletop gamers should be just the nerdy types who’d know about old mythologies and alchemy stuff. Or maybe someone has done it, just that it’s not online.

When I decided to get my own dice set for the very occasional one-shot tabletop RPG session, I remembered something about Platonic solids and the traditional European elements. A quick Google search confirmed it. Here are the assignments according to Plato (“Timaeus”), Aristotle and Johannes Kepler (“Harmonices Mundi”):

Page from “Harmonices Mundi” showing the 5 Platonic solids and their elements
[Update 22 Dec 2019] Here is my printed magic circle for this dice set
  • Tetrahedron (D4) – Fire
  • Cube (D6) – Earth
  • Octahedron (D8) – Air
  • Dodecahedron (D12) – Aether. I’m not going to spell it ‘ether’, because to me that’s a volatile organic solvent.
  • Icosahedron (D20) – Water
  • *D10s – Yin/YangBlack/White

*The 10-sided dice are NOT Platonic solids as they are not completely regular. Since there are 2 identical D10s for percentage rolls, I’ve assigned them as the opposing forces Yin 阴and Yang阳.

Of course, I could use the Chinese five elements 五行 (水火木金土) for the other dice, but as far as I know, they have not been assigned to the Platonic solids, so that would be missing out on the symbolic connection.

I chose the colour of each element based on these LUNA SEA video clips below. (Yes, LS again, what can I say, those live videos are really compelling. *shrug*)

“Providence”, 2013 The End of the Dream live. Screenshot taken at about 43:23 in the full-duration video. Or just view the 5-min video of “Providence” only.

“Providence”, 2013 The End of the Dream live: the coloured lighting seems to be based on the element assigned in the “乱” video below. The same lighting scheme was also used for “Providence” in the 2018 Lunatic Fest.

“乱” PV/MV (promotional video / music video): the element background for each member matches the coloured lighting used for “Providence”.

So, combining all the factors:
Tetrahedron (D4) – Fire – Red (J)

Cube (D6) – Earth – Green (Shinya)
Octahedron (D8) – Air – Yellow (Sugizo)
Dodecahedron (D12) – Aether – Violet (Ryuichi)
Icosahedron (D20) – Water – Blue (Inoran)
D10s – Yin/YangBlack/White

Possible alternate arrangement: Chinese five elements 五行 (水火木金土) according to planet names and Kepler’s assignment of Platonic solids in-between each planetary orbit in “Mysterium Cosmographicum”. In this hybrid scheme, the planets before Earth will use the outer Platonic solid and the planets after Earth will use the inner Platonic solid. I find this needlessly complicated, compared to my scheme above, but I’m just listing it as an alternative.

Octahedron (D8) Blue

Venus 金星
Icosahedron (D20) Yellow

Dodecahedron (D12) Red
Mars 火星

Tetrahedron (D4) Green

Cube (D6) Brown

But why stop here? Now for a very pseudo-scientific arrangement of traditional elements and modern classifications of matter:

  • Earth – Solid
  • Water – Liquid
  • Air – Gas
  • Fire – Energy
  • Aether – Spacetime
  • 土/水 – Land/Sea
  • 木/金 – Organic/Inorganic
  • 火 – Energy

There’s a lot of interesting symbolism and artistic potential in fusing old mythology with new science.

OK, that’s all for my excessively long nerdy explanation. It would be interesting to see if any sellers produce with an elemental mix set like this, instead of all dice of the same colour / pattern.

1 thought on “Tabletop RPG dice set: Platonic Solids 5 Elements

  1. Pingback: DDEP09-02 Hellfire Requiem at Singapore Comic Con | Mad Science Laboratory

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