While chess has been around since the 6th century (give or take), it does need a little updating from time to time, especially when it comes to the way chess sets look. Geeky, modern, futuristic or just weird, the following 25 chess sets cover it all.
Super Mario Bros Chess Set
To demonstrate the never ending war between Mario and a bunch of creative thinking animals, this Super Mario Bros chess set was made from polymer clay, and each piece was sculpted and painted entirely by hand. Available for $190.
LED Glowing Chessboard
The photon chess LED set makes playing the ancient game quite special with its design and lighting, and comes with three options of coloring: Red, Blue or a combination of both. Available for $79.
Shot Glass Chess Set
The concept is simple but brilliant: Play chess and, well, get drunk while playing it. The figures are drawn on the glasses, although after a few shots, you might not notice anymore. Available for $24.95
Legend of Zelda Chess Set
Link takes his never ending quest to the chess board and looks super cute while doing it. All pieces are cast in resin with a felt bottom, and sealed with a matte finish except Available for the chu jelly pawns which are high-gloss. Available for $950
South Park Chess Set
Based on the hilarious TV show, this one doesn’t pit a faction of characters against another one. There are the same characters, with Kenny as the cannon fodder, against each other, only with a different base coloring to distinguish them. Available for $168
Playing Tri-Dimensional chess is incredibly difficult. But doing it with a special Star Trek set makes you feel soooo elite, it’s worth it. Available for $559.95.
Star Wars Chess Set
Silver pieces are the Rebels, Black Pieces are the Empire & friends. You don’t need to know anything else, or do anything else for the rest of your life except play chess with Star Wars characters and make voices while playing. Available for $23.99
LED Glow Chess Set
Another LED set with a different look, as the glossy board gives it a nice blend of darkness and light, with every piece lighting up on or near the board. Available for $79.91.
3D Knight Chess Set
The cool 3D knight chess set isn’t just about gold pieces going up against the silver guy; the board hangs above a ravaged battlefield. Available for $158
Pokemon Chess Set (Fire VS Grass)
This Pokemon chess set pits fire and grass against each other on an epic, battle-torn table (which comes separate from the pieces), all made out of polymer clay, polyurethane glaze and slate. Available for $300
Doctor Who Chess Set
The Doctor Who chess set does look like salt & pepper shakers going up against each other, but there are 3D images of characters from the show inside the pieces, so you know what is at stake. Available for $35.99
Chess Set of Dragons
One of the more unique pieces on this list, made by obiskus of DeviantArt. The dragons are made out of copper, with half of them silver plated. The board is made of copper and stainless steel. Available here.
Flintstones 3D Chess Set
There’s nothing combative about the Flintstones (unless Fred is having a bad day at work) but they seem to make very fitting chess pieces pitted against themselves (with different coloring). Available for $44.50.
Bead Bazaar Their Highness’s Chess Set
Some chess sets are for kids, like Bead Bazaar Your Highness’s chess set, being just in the right size so smaller hands can mess around with them. Available for $37.49.
Wooden Chess Set Pirates vs. Ninjas
I don’t remember anything about pirates from the Caribbean waters having problem with Asian ninjas, but when you pit pieces against each other on a chessboard, everything makes sense. Available for $275.
A very special Lord of the Rings chess set for fans of the books but especially the movies, with the playing pieces being precise miniature sculptures of the cast members, including an ancient map of Middle-earth Available just below the playing surface, which the words from the one ring colored on top of it. Available for $495.
50 CALIBER BULLET shell Chess Set
Made out of .50 caliber bullet cases that were made to look a lot less deadly but yet very cool, this metallic looking chess set is not just for army buffs, but for any chess fan who likes to play with shiny things. Available for $545.
Madoka Magica Chess Set
For those who want to play chess Madoka style, there’s this interesting creation, made out of Sculpey. Available for $75.
Minecraft Chess Set
If there’s an Angry Birds movie, there can also be a Minecraft chess set, bringing the battle through pixelated characters (Creepers and zombies), differentiated by black and white bases. Available for $39.99.
Modern Chess Set
This modern chess board has an impressionistic feel to it, made out of Acrylic, and gives a more flowing, classier vibe than your normal chess set. Available for $218.07.
Chess Set Jolly Roger Band Chess Set
There’s something special and timeless about wooden chess sets, made out of maple and walnut. It comes with a pirate set that includes kings and queens playing musical instruments, and the pawns are the “Jolly Roger”, the skull and crossbones. Available for $825.
Origami Chess Set
Only paper and glue to make this green vs white chess battle, but the Origami chess set is for those who want something very different when they’re making intelligent battles on the kitchen table with someone. Available for $25.16.
Sometimes there’s a third person. So he needs to play to. Instead of going 2 on 1, why not play 3-player circular chess? Same rules, same strategies, only an added degree of complication, with a very good looking board to make it even better. Available for $49.95.
Space Invader Chess Set
There’s something still captivating about Space Invaders after all these years, and despite being a classic Arcade game, they fit in quite well on a futuristic looking chessboard. Available here.
Skyline Chess Set
So what’s special about the Skyline chess set? It recreates the London cityscape over the checkered black and white plane. In short, it’s for chess loves who also love architecture. Available for $130