Chess pieces (by Aaron Beckhon Jr, 2022)
Chess pieces (by Aaron Beckhon and Elise Aultman, 2022)

Project statement

Work collaboratively to redesign the game pieces in chess. we will use chess rules, mechanics, and goals as the game system; the focus of this design is to use the system as a potential for a new narrative device. Our chess pieces will tell a story about two sides that work against each other for power. What will be represented visually is contrast, hierarchy, and a diptych pieces. We will use black and grey card stock to create a modern wealthy aesthetic on one side and use brown and tan cardstock to create a working-class aesthetic to the other side. The player who is most experienced in the game of chess, will take the side of the wealthy architecture and the person who is least experienced will take the other side. The black and brown chess board will be used for our pieces to create a sense of harmony and belonging for the chess pieces. Our chess pieces will be tiny architectural buildings that will show hierarchy and symbolism in each piece.


View detailed project process at Checkmate: process


What I enjoyed most about this project was coming up with the concept statement for our chess pieces and deciding what narrative we wanted to visualize. Working with split joints allowed me to expand on my iterations so that I have more than one way of prototyping. If I were to make any adjustments to this project, I would change the material I worked with to something heavier however, due to the laser cutting machine availability, I had to choose a material more suitable for cricut cutting.