Petals Around the Rose

The name of the game is an important clue. Somebody rolls a set of five or six dice and then announces an answer, which is always either an even number or zero. New players are told to figure out the pattern by themselves and announce the correct result of every roll without sharing their solution process.

On every roll, the initiate – the person rolling the dice – must announce the correct answer before anybody else does. As mentioned, the answer is always either an even number, or zero.

Petals Around the Rose is an example of a game with “concealed rules”. That is, the rules of the game are kept secret from new players, because either discovering them is part of playing the game, or is a prank and rules do not actually exist that dictate how the game works.

Apparently, Petals Around the Rose is a good indication of your intelligence: It actually takes smart people longer to figure out the game. You can check out Bill Gates’ experience with the puzzle here.

The answer to the illustrated roll above is 6. Can you figure out why?