|POLYHEDRA DICE by CREATIVE PUBLICATIONS (photo source)|
A suited man juggles five polyhedra dice - is this an early DM? No, more likely it is supposed to be a math teacher.
These photos were posted to the Acaeum recently (see this thread), and show a set of dice found with a OD&D White Box set. The dice themselves are the standard Polyhedra Dice sold by TSR in the '70s, which per Jon Peterson were sourced from a California company, Creative Publications. But the packaging they are in is something I've never seen before. The title, Polyhedra Dice, is identical to the title TSR used in their catalogs and product lists of the era (follow link to see an example). While the dice obscure some of the text, I can make out the letters "CREAT..." near the green 8-sider, indicating the original packaging was indeed supplied by Creative Publications, not TSR or another company.
Most of these dice that I've seen are ones from the Holmes Basic set (update: see below), where they came in small sealed bag without a paper insert. The set was also sold separately (see catalog link above), and I had assumed these were sold in the same form. But possibly at some point TSR re-sold sets with the original CP packaging, or possibly this set was ordered directly from CP.
The back of the insert begins with the following paragraph:
"To the ancient Greeks the five regular solids (tetrahedron - 4 faces, hexhedron - 6 faces, octahedron - 8 faces, dodecahedron - 12 faces, icosahedron - 20 faces) were known as the "dice of the gods". They were prized for their beauty and believed to have strange, cosmic meanings"
Following this is a list of suggestions for using the dice, which are mostly obscured by the dice themselves.
The Marked 20-sided Die
TSR Percentile Dice in the '70s
Update: See Playing at the World on Identifying Dice of the 1970s. Note that the dice in this the CP sets are not exactly the same as those found in Holmes Basic. Most notably, the d6 in these Creative Publication sets is pink versus the orange-red of the d6 of the Holmes Basic sets.
|The dice set together with Men & Magic. Photo source same as above.|