If you’re going to make a product, make sure it’s on-brand. That’s the lesson we’ve learned from Omin Dran of the Dungeons & Dragons podcast by Penny Arcade, Acquisitions Incorporated. So when we saw they had tapped Elderwood Academy to make some amazing branded dice gear, we were sold.
Prior to this, we had only heard of Elderwood Academy and hadn’t had a chance to check out any of their fine products in person. So we had to see for ourselves what kind of goods were satisfactory enough for a Cleric of Tymora to stamp the company’s brand on.
In all seriousness, this is probably one of the better hexchests we’ve seen. Let’s start with the top — the box has been created with a walnut wood that looks, feels, and even smells amazing. It’s got a bit of that freshly-charred wood smell like a campfire had been brewing somewhere, while still retaining the scent of the wood itself. The AI logo and design pattern around the edges was superbly crafted, with no chipping or misprinting. Just the box on the outside is a great piece of artwork.
When you crack open the box you get a honeycomb pattern inside to hold seven dice. These are to be your primary set of D&D dice that you would pick up from any retailer, which includes a D20, a D4, a D8, a numbered D6, two D10s that serve as percentage dice, and a D12. (Note: Dice do not come with the box.) You can see that the wood has been layered, which we’ll get to the primary reasoning in a second, separating the darker design from the lighter design on top. All six corners include a little more intricate designs that are to die for. This is an obscene amount of detail that just made us smile upon opening it.
You can fit any of the dice you choose into any square. Obviously, the intent of the box is to put your D20 in the middle as the centerpiece, but as you can see below, you can fit whatever die you want inside whatever square you want. They’ve been designed to be big enough to store all of them equally. The best part about this box that you can see is how it’s sealed. Remember how we showed the separation of wood? In each corner of the box on both the lid and the base are magnets that have been sealed inside. So when you put the lid down, it snaps shut with the force of the magnets and keep everything safe.
The lid comes with its own surprises as well — the top is a leather pad with the Elderwood Academy logo on it, which also serves as a nice mini-rolling tray. So if you want to and you don’t trust how your dice roll on the table, you can try your luck with the lid. Which, incidentally, gave us more natural 20 rolls in a day than we’ve seen in a month. We’re not saying the box is lucky, we’re just saying it was a lot better for us to roll in the lid.
Overall, this hexchest is just amazing. And if you’re not a fan of Acquisitions Incorporated like we are, that’s totally fine, as the company sells these boxes with over 20 different designs to choose from and about a dozen different woods of varying color. So you can customize it however you see fit to both yourself and the characters you like to play.
The one item that might hit people a little hard is the price, which is about $39-99 depending on the type of wood you choose. Overall, these are amazing chests and this company went above and beyond to make them special and stand out. If you’re looking for something beyond a dice bag to store your stuff, this would be a fine choice.