G.I. Joe Dice Game

From Bob Madden:

I wrote these rules for all the people who ever played G.I.Joes with one of their friends and screamed the words "You canāt do that! Itās not fair!" This game is basically just a set of guidelines for playing with your G.I.Joes and having fun... "fairly".


This game incorporates the G.I.Joe 3 ²" toyline, their accessories, their vehicles, and anything else "Joe". What it is intended to do is to allow 2 or more players to play and battle with their Joes realistically. This doesnāt mean that they canāt do really neat-o stuff, it just means that you canāt have Crystal Ball grow to an amazing 50 feet tall, and run amuck with an a-bomb launcher. It incorporates a characterās ability to miss when firing a gun, or for others to successfully dodge a shot fired upon them.


All you need are a few dice, a really cool terrain (use imagination. This could be a multi-million dollar landscape setup, or the backseat of a minivan.), some pices of paper (or my pre-made statsheets), and, naturally, some Joes.


Firstoff, set aside the Joes that you wish to use. This game is much easier with 2-4 figures per player, as the rules get quite hectic with large scale battles. However, this is entirely up to you. For the most part, I set my own rule for my battles that the teams must be plausible. No, Duke (v1), Duke (v2), Duke (v3), and Cobra Commander may not be on the same side. Once you have your teams picked, you need to set up their "skills".

For each Joe you use, you need to have a stat sheet. This sheet includes all skills, special abilities, a hit table (where the character has been shot, stabbed, etc.), movement range, wound status, and all personal armaments.

The stats may sometimes be hard to generate, so you and the other players must sometimes work together to generate a skill. They are: STRENGTH, WEAPONS, SCRAMBLE, COMMAND, AGILITY, MELEE. Each skill is set with a "D" number. For example, a characterās skill of STRENGTH: 4D would require you to roll 4 dice, and add them up to determine the outcome. Stats will be further discussed later in the rules.

Personal armaments are anything the figure is carrying, or anything sculpted directly onto them (this includes backpacks). If the figure has a gun on their right leg, you would write this down as an armament.

Movement range is how far a figure can move during your turn. One "unit" of movement is usually 2" forward, backward, up, or down, and the average move of a character is 10 units per turn. This can vary, though. Someone with high physical conditioning may have 11 or 12 (Sgt. Slaughter, Storm Shadow), whereas an out-of-shape character, or one carrying large objects may have only 6-8.

Wound status is how much a character has been hurt. A character always has "wound checkboxes" equal to the amount of "D" they have under STRENGTH. So, a STRENGTH: 3D character has 3 checkboxes. A checkbox is filled in (or "checked off") whenever the character is wounded. This can happen via a strong STRENGTH roll while fistfighting, or can result from a gunshot. This will be explained in later. When a characterās boxes have been checked off completely, they are dead.

So, now that you know what the different stats mean, you can write your own for your characters. As further help, let me show you my stats generated for Tunnel Rat:

Name: Tunnel Rat

Affiliation: Joes

Move: 10

(3 checkboxes)









*Gas Grenade




To begin each of your turns, you take out and roll 2 dice. This number is how many Actions you have during your turn and your opponentās turn, and is re-rolled on your next turn. Actions are the heart of the game. It usually takes one Action to fire a gun, or jump a ravine, etc. Here are some examples of Actions:

*Firing a gun

*Unstrapping a built-in knife

*Moving ö moving only costs one action for each time you move. For example, a character with 10 moves could move 3 units forward (one action), aim and fire a gun at an enemy (a second action), and use the other 7 units by scaling 14" up a cliffside (this is two actions. One to move again, and an AGILITY roll to see if they can climb the cliff)

*Throwing a grenade

*Hopping into a vehicle

*Starting up and driving the vehicle

*Positioning ö moving the characterās body parts within a 2" circle to duck out of view, or keep from falling over, or to move from a laying position to a standing one.


This is where dice rolls and characterās skills come into play. Whenever a character wants to do something where thereās a chance of failure, you must roll. This includes jumping a ravine (an AGILITY roll), firing a weapon (WEAPONS), or swinging a knife (MELEE). For all non-interaction rolls (ones that include only that one character performing the action), you use the difficulty chart:

EASY 1D ö 2D



This means that the character rolls their skill dice, and the opponent rolls the difficulty dice. If the difficulty is higher, the character loses. If the characterās roll is either tied or higher, they succeed. When acting against another character, you make opposed rolls. This means it is one characterās skill roll against the otherās.

Whenever you roll dice, you need to include one dice of another color. This is the "wild die". If the wild comes up 2-5, simply add it as normal. If it is a 6, add it and roll it again. Continue rolling as long as you keep getting sixes. If it comes up 1, you have a "complication". A complication is a non-fatal occurrence, decided by the opponent, inflicted on the character who rolled the complication. Complications include gun jams, tripping, dropping equipment, etc.


Weapons are used to inflict damage upon other characters. They are used during your turn, and usually use the WEAPONS skill. When firing a weapon, a player must sight along the characterās gun and look at the target. Check the targetās positioning, and then consult the Difficulty chart. For example, a character aiming at a target, in the open, a foot away from the figure would be an Easy roll (2D). 2 feet away, wearing camoflauge would be 4D. Point blank would be 1D, etc.

However, there are other influences. For every 1/3 the target is covered up, add +1D to the difficulty. 2/3 would be +2D. Just a head or a hand would be +3D. Also, different guns can have an effect on the roll. A heavy machine gun might add 2D to the difficulty, or a Sniper rifle may add 3D to the aimer.

When weapons are fired, roll against the difficulty to determine the outcome. If the target is hit, consult the hit location chart.

Here is the Hit Location Chart. When a character is hit by a gun, roll 1D and check the chart:

1 Head (fatal)

2 Chest (roll again. 1-4 = normal wound. 5-6 = Heart, fatal)

3 Left Arm

4 Right Arm

5 Left Leg

6 Right Leg.

Anyplace but the fatal areas simply causes you to mark off one wound checkbox. A knife or an arrow simply causes a wound when it hits, but a gunshot wounds and disables the hit bodypart. For example, a character shot in the hand would get 1 wound, and could no longer use the arm to hold weapons, and could no longer climb with both arms. A legshot causes the character to roll 1D each time they move to see how far. This is their limit.

When fistfighting, both characters involved roll their MELEE skill. If the attacker hits, they roll their STRENGTH vs. The opponentās STRENGTH, and consult this chart:

5-9 more than opponentās roll = 1 wound

10 + = 2 wounds

This can also be used for falling damage. Assign a damage number, then roll the STRENGTH dice.


Strain Points show a characterās ability to push themselves. Each character starts out with one Strain Point (SP), and earns one for each wound they inflict on another character (2 SPs for a kill). Strain points are spent to add +1D to any roll that the characters perform (not for weapon difficulty). They may be used at any time, without limit.

Scramble is the only skill you can use during your opponentās turn. If you have any actions left, you may make a Scramble roll for one of your characters being attacked. All it does is replace the difficulty of the attack with the new scramble. This is helpful when being attacked at close range.


You already know about movement. There are just three extra things:

*Characters must reposition to a non-lying position before moving full. A character laying flat on the ground may only crawl 1D movement without repositioning.

*Characters have the opportunity to do a Full Duck & Roll. To do this, you spend one action, and the character may do nothing for the entire round. You take the figure, and roll it across the ground in the direction you choose. The figure can sometimes get out of tough jams this way, but you can easily underestimate your toss, and inflict heavy damage on the character (toss them into a metal door, or off a ledge.) Apply damage for accidents.

*If, at any time, a figure falls over, they drop their weapon, or anything else accidental, this actually happens. You cannot say "Oops!", and pick them back up. If your figure falls off the side of the base when you bump it, they could possibly injur themselves. Be careful what you run into.

Thats it! I think Iāve covered the basic game, or at least all the important stuff. I am working on some rules for vehicle usage, so if you want me to finish and email them to you, you can reach me at

[email protected]

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