Sackson Solitaire Dice

May 12, 2011

I actually wrote this program years ago, but never quite got around to releasing it. It’s a little game program to play “Solitaire Dice” as described by the brilliant game designer Sid Sackson in his classic book “A Gamut of Games.” Frankly, it still isn't quite done. I want to add some biographical info about Sid, and there probably ought to be one of those little round (?) buttons, and when somebody launches it for the first time, it really ought to automatically pop up the "How to Play" instructions. But in the meantime, it actually works pretty darn well, so it might as well be available to somebody. Who knows when I'm going to get those last little details done?

How To Use It

Download, launch, play. Macintosh OS X only, I'm afraid. The rules of the game are in the Help system. In a nutshell, you’re rolling five dice, and trying to pick out pairs so you can score the same values over and over. The catch is that the fifth dice can only be one of three values. You get to choose which three, but you’re still sometimes forced to pair up dice you don’t really want to. I used to play this game with pencil and paper (and dice!) in college, but it’s easier with the automatic score-keeping.

The Application

You can download it as a Zip archive. Double-click the archive to unpack it, if your browser doesn’t do that for you when you download it. As mentioned above, I wrote it years ago. It’s written in (believe it or not) AppleScript, using the AppleScript Studio tools that used to be part of XCode. They don’t support AppleScript as an application language in XCode anymore, so further development has proven to be rather tricky. Maybe one of these days I’ll rewrite the whole thing in Ruby. Or just do something else.

Fine Print

This application is an original work by Dave Howell, and is copyright 2004, 2011. I grant individuals the right to use this application at no charge.