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Ra: The Dice Game (RDG) WBC 2016 Report
Updated Nov. 26, 2016 Icon Key
175 Players Chris Gnech, PA 2016 Status 2017 Status History/Laurels
2016 Champion Click box for details. Click box for details.


Ra: The Dice Game employs all the major thematic elements of Ra and creatively transforms them into a fast and easily understood dice game. Pharaohs, The Nile, Civilizations, and Monuments as well as the occasional catastrophe are all here. The result has been a popular event which has grown every year since its WBC debut and again this year surpassed its predecessor for the second year in a row. While the general downturn in WBC attendance ended the six-year streak of increased entries, the event remained stable with very strong support.

“Rahtzee!” was the battle cry of Chris Gnech.

“You people are having too much fun,” was the accusation of a growing crowd of onlookers. Fun was infectious as the game continued and drew more than 25 spectators to view the final roll. It was the culmination of 82 games and 175 gamers knowing that one win in the heats gave you a shot to run the elimination gauntlet. The quick QF/SF/F series sells this event to conventioneers seeking quick wood.

The usual suspects battled against those who had just learned the game. Scott Buckwalter, the game’s original GM, has created an environment where learning and teaching is a reward to everyone. Dice games have their appeal to those who like a liberal dose of luck in their games. But
more than luck is required when the two top career laurelists, Kara Alexandra and Gordon Rodgers,return to the Final yet again.

The table worried early as the defending champ was starting the game in her favorite position – last. She had already advanced two rounds by having the tiebreaker. Mary Ellen Powers, who finished second, played steady and paced the final table through two epochs. All players were within five points at the start of the third epoch. Mary Ellen and Chris Gnech both played strong pharaoh games. However, Chris was able to add 21 to his 19 to win a low-scoring championship.

Chris focused on the end game whenever he could. Monuments were the foundation he laid from the beginning. He even survived an earthquake that Kara sent his way. Making all your dice count is the game. However, top laurelists Kara and Gordon had six suns-to-points rolls and a disaster between them. With all these positive plays, they finished third and fourth.

Part of the fun to be had are the colorful quotes: “You don’t want to block me, one of us has to win!” and the reply, “I’m not working with you . . . remember?”

“Wow, you’re good at this game!” was said so often because the joke was true.

None of the players took themselves too seriously. What a refreshing event. Chris was leading laughs and doubled his score when the third epoch ended. He laughed last.

Many thanks to my assistant GM Ashley Kilroy and to all of the fun seekers in the 2016 tournament.

2016 Laurelists Repeating Laurelists: 2
Mary Ellen Powers, VA Kara Alexandra, CA Gordon Rodgers, PA Kathy Stroh, NH Sara VanderWal, on
2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th
Ra's condensed dice version remains as popular as ever. GM Rob Kilroy oversees his four finalists.

Ra: The Dice Game Junior 2016

15 little sun worshipers eschewed the swimming pool at 2 PM Thursday to play Ra Dice under the wathful eye of GM Laurie Wojtaszczyk. Alex McNally proved to be the one most favored by Ra, followed in order by Bailey Burdett, Andrew Freeman, Alex Freeman, Ella Landel and Jay Schoenen.

Blocks and dice ... what's not to like? GM Laurie Wojtaszczyk presents Alex McNally with his plaque
GM  Rob Kilroy [1st Year]  NA
 phillyamish@comcast.net  NA