It’s obscene how much Lego we have. Ten years of buying for birthdays and Christmases, followed by hoarding then spending allowances, has left us with two huge boxes of pieces that were once star ships and castles. So what do you do with all the bits and pieces that your kids are getting too old to enjoy playing with so much but which can absolutely, under no circumstances, be sent to the thrift store? Build a chess set.
So which Lego chess set is best?
If you’re like us, you have many options to choose from. We have built several chess sets along a number of themes. Below I’ve posted pictures of three of our favorites (did I mention we have a boatload of Lego guys?). We have more and I’ll likely post them as time goes along. There’s a Dark Side Star Wars set, but we’re missing the emperor for the king (making Darth Vader the queen??). y youngest son has a Lego advent calendar and I’m betting there’s and emperor in there so we’ll add that once it’s done.
Star Wars (the Good Guys)
I can’t really call this the Rebel Alliance since we used clone troopers for pawns. Despite our massive collection, we didn’t have enough rebel pilots, plus the clones make it nice and obvious that this side is white.
I thought about having Luke in his black, Darth-Vader-fighting jumpsuit, but this side is supposed to be white so we went with Tie-fighter Luke. No Han Solo, alas, but I could hardly make him the king and making him the bishop would have meant having two of him (imagine a galaxy, even one far, far away, with two Hans… it just doesn’t work).
As cool and necessary as a Star Wars Lego chess set seemed, it would hardly be chess without some actual knights.
We have horses but they don’t fit in the four-by-four squares on the board we built, so our knights have dismounted (just go with it). The rooks are standard bearers which is somewhat symbolic of the castle’s outposts, I suppose. British pikemen as bishops? Why not? Oh, and a Japanese princess for the queen. She looks unarmed and this provoked my oldest son to put a mace in her hand, but we decided she looked cooler with just the fan. She is a deadly assassin and the fan conceals poison darts and/or blades.
Why is a Japanese princess married to Henry the Fifth? And why are they leading an army that could not possibly have all lived in the same century? Stop asking silly questions. While you’re at it, you might as well ask why half the pawns appear to be wearing button down shirts under vest jackets.
Pirates / Ocean Dudes
No, this is not Pirates of the Caribbean, though I’m sure a fair amount of the bits in this picture are from those sets. This is just “Everything to do with the Ocean.”
It may be hard to see, but the major pieces, with the exception of the queen, are all carrying strangely appropriate objects. The king, of course, is carrying a trident, symbol of Poseidon. The queen is not carrying anything but she has the head of a Cthulhu-style ocean beast and that seems like plenty. The bishops are skeletons of long-drowned sailors. Each one is carrying a fish (naturally). The knights are actually pirates and each is armed with a blunderbuss. The one on the left has a hook for a hand and (look carefully) the one on the right has a peg leg and a telescope.
I honestly have no idea what the rooks are meant to be or why we decided they should be holding sticks of TNT. Like the queen, there’s a sort of Cthulhu feel to them, with their squiddy heads.
We have a few more sets in development. Which do you like best so far? Have you made a Lego chess set? Send me the picture or a link to it and we’ll blog about it.