D20 dice made from wooly mammoth ivory

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Anyone who buys this is contributing to their extinction.


They failed their saving throw fair and square.


Think of poor Cecil the Mammoth!


Just seems wrong though.


At least the animal didn’t die just for its tusks. But yeah, it just didn’t feel right – I wonder if this runs afoul, however accidentally, of ivory bans.

It strikes me that this is a good metaphor for oil-based products. Oil’s made from dinosaurs and dinosaur-contemporary flora, and we use it to make little plastic trinkets. Like dice.


My feeling is that, by creating a limited supply of and thus a market for ivory dice, this will contribute to the poaching of ivory-bearing animals. People who can’t get the real thing will often go for close enough. Look at all the fake brand name products out there.

People should be made to feel embarrassed to even admitting that they own anything made out of ivory.
Yes, this means that Artisan Dice would be an innocent(?) bystander-victim - their site doesn’t say where or how their tusks are sourced. But the animals that are poached are very certainly innocent victims.


The problem with items like this is that the phrases “bone” or “mammoth ivory” are often just a cover story.

Elephants are being poached today for their ivory and may be extinct in the wild in less than 10 years if we don’t stop it. So please don’t buy ivory anything, even if it claims to come from an animal we already hunted to extinction. There’s no way to be sure.


Truer than you think since often “mammoth” is just a lie to cover up that it came from modern elephants.


No obligatory Penny-Arcade? You guys are slacking.

Source? From what I understand Mammoth ivory coming out of the permafrost that is melting in Siberia isn’t that rare. Sort of like petrified wood in some locations isn’t rare.

It is pretty easy to tell elephant from mammoth ivory in raw form. And I would imaging poached elephant ivory would be waaaay more expensive than found mammoth ivory. I know China is still a big market for elephant ivory, and their system is ripe for abuse to get stuff smuggled in or false documents.

But I highly doubt some dice makers are using elephant ivory.

Also as a note, when people make stuff like this or say grip panels for a 1911, they usually aren’t using whole tusks, but fragments and chunks that don’t look like much by themselves.


This is true but it doesn’t change much. Any non-zero amount came from an individual.

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For SF games, there needs to be d20 made from nickel-iron carved from meteorites.


There is no reason to play emotional games when there is an abundance of well-reasoned arguments.


I don’t see why that is an issue. Especially for a long dead animal who died from natural causes.

They are forged from meteorites, not carved. I swear I have seen one before. I know I have seen, and nearly bought, a Damascus pattern letter opener made from an iron meteor. It really wasn’t that expensive considering it was FROM SPACE and hand forged. But I passed on it.


The lack of ivory for pool balls called for a replacement: Plastic
I remember reading about this in detail, somewhere, but a quick search yields:


Of course you’re right if there were no chance of confusing this with the remains of a contemporary animal.

But as was pointed out upthread, in many places “mammoth” ivory is really a cover for elephant ivory, and it does the same harm as any other.

I’m not saying that these dice are fraudulent, but I am saying that caution is warranted in this realm in general. Same for walrus, narwhal, etc, ivories.

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The well-reasoned arguments have been around for decades. Obviously, they haven’t worked very well.

I can give you a few dozen recent examples off the top of my head. But let’s just leave it at: Rich and/or powerful and/or famous people don’t think that the laws of nature or of humankind apply to them.


Yup – which dates from when we had so much oil, everyone thought we’d never run out.

IIRC part of the reason it started to catch on for other uses was that the cellulose; used at the time for things like cheap combs or other small consumer goods which we now make from plastic, was highly flammable. There were instances of cellulose-based manufacturing plants exploding.

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