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How to Roll a D100, It’s Easy – Hint, You Need Two Dice

Unless, of course, you happen to have an authentic D100 that is more ball than it is a polyhedral geometric brick, that is. If you do, I recommend rolling it within a dice tray to prevent it from doing the long roll off the table and down the hall. This is the dice tray I use, if you’re curious. The trick on how to roll a d100 lies in a standard pair of dice in most 7-die kits.

If you happen to have your very own traditional 7-dice set for DND, you may have noticed two dice share an identical shape. The first is a D10, while the second bears 00-90. That second die is what is known as a percentile die.

To roll a D100, you need to use both the percentile die and the D10 in tandem. So say you rolled something like this:

Percentile die and d10 - 90 and 3 - How to roll a D100

That is a 90 and a 3. Add both together, and the result is 93, a high roll. However, before you get excited, unlike a traditional skill check that uses a d20, that doesn’t mean much. This is because you use a d100 for things like wild magic sorcery. A 93 would mean, “Your size increases by one size category for the next minute.” I’ll go over other uses later in the article, so stay tuned for that! 🙂

A Common Misconception About the Percentile die and Rolling 100

One of the biggest misconceptions involving the percentile die is that 00 would be what you need for 100. The order that you construct your final number from matters for this reason because you might think a 10 on your d10 and 00 on the percentile die means 100.

Just think about it if you were to roll a 90 and a 10, that isn’t 910; it’s 100. So whatever you get for the percentile die goes first, and the D10 goes second. I had this misunderstanding at first because of how a d10 is typically read. Don’t worry about it if you also thought the same.

How to Roll a D100 in Virtual Tabletop Solution

How to Roll a D100 in Roll20
Roll20 uses a /roll {number of dice}{dicetype}

Suppose you are using a Virtual Tabletop software with your group. In that case, they usually make it very easy to roll dice of every variant, even the elusive d1000, for really, really big lists. That many faces make them impractical to use as a physical die, as it is essentially a round ball at that point, but virtual simulation doesn’t need to contend with it rolling out of control.

The exact method in most cases involves clicking on images shaped like the standard die set, pictured below. Other options utilize a command like:

/roll {Number of Dice}{Dice Type}

You can even use google to roll most dice for you, though not the D100, oddly enough. If you need to roll a d100, or larger and want to try an online dice roller, then RGBStudios has a fairly well-made one.

DND Beyond Icon Dice
DND Beyond Icon Rolls.

A Fun Fact about that Percentile Die – It Can Be used as a D10

If you’ve lost your D10 but still have a percentile die, simply remove the zero and continue to roll as usual. The same applies to the times where you need to dish out 2d10 for a particularly nasty one-two using a glaive or some other powerful two-handed martial weapon when you get your first extra attack at level 5 (roll d20 twice, then do damage if both hits).

Hopefully, you’ll be able to locate the foot magnet before it finds you later on. At least it isn’t as bad as a d4 caltrop… ask me how I know how that feels.

The opposite holds true. A standard d10 can also be used as a percentile die. Just add the zero and roll twice in a pinch to do a d100 roll, remembering that 0 becomes the lowest roll.

When Is a D100 Typically Used?

Most use cases of a D100 in regular play reside in the hands of your DM. They use it for a large variety of things, which you can find some of them in this list:

PHB = Players Handbook | XGtE = Xanathar’s Guide to Everything | DMG = Dungeon Masters Guide

DM’s D100 Use

  • What you enconter can be determined by a random encounters list
  • Mixing Potions – their effects vary based on the result of a D100
  • Teleportation – Where you
  • What Magic Items are looted by the players
  • What Treasures are found by the players
  • Creating sentient Magic item personalities
  • Effects of Madness ailment
  • What happens when a Nat 1 Roll is made for an attack (homebrew feature)
  • Homebrew stuff that your group and dm make up

Players D100 Use

  • Wild Magic Sorcery – Page 104 PHB
  • Backstory assignment – Page 61-73 XGtE
  • Trinket Tables – Page 160-161 PHB
  • Divine Intervention – Page 59 PHB
  • Homebrew Tables

For an example of some homebrew applications, my DM has a “What happens when you roll a nat 1 to hit” table that he made himself. I’ll see if I can get him to part with it to adapt it for your games. If it is something you are interested in, let me know in the comments below.

Another use that I could see a D100 being used for would be a crowd response to a performance check. After all, you could be the best heavy metal band in the world, but if your audience is full of people who love country music and detest heavy metal, you’re going to have a very displeased audience.

You can get very creative when it comes to using a D100 check.

Devon Kubacki

Devon Kubacki

Hi there, I'm Devon, nice to meet you! I am the founder of Notes of Yore, and I'm an avid fan of tabletop games, particularly Dungeons and Dragons. I've been playing for just under two years now, and can say that I am hooked...or rather grappled by it. I hope you find my work here on NoYo helpful, and thank you for reading!View Author posts

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