5.31.2006

The Checkered Sphere

Getting the board out of board games.

Simple really, steel sphere with magnetic pieces, set to rotate like a standard globe.

It would be perfect for such games as Go and Othello.


Obvious problem of distortion occurs: 13 squares around middle and three at top, or 5 huge around middle and 5 teeny at top. Going with the former would cause some confusion as to which squares would be next to which, so

I say make it look like a soccer ball. While this would change the rules and play of many games, it would still be fun, and the odd pentagons would make for some interesting strategy.

I'm not sure checkers would work on this without some major overhaul or my second design idea. A checker board is 8x8, and 8 squares around the poles would be hard to do, unless one used pegs instead of magnets, and each time you pushed your peg in it lit the whole square up that color. If this is feasible, then perhaps a lite-brite-esque sphere would have a vast amount of peg holes and preprogrammed square divisions (8x8 for checkers, more for go).

By moving east or west, respectively, the two players would effectively be playing Wow's Toroidal Checkers.

But this makes it a mite bit complicated/expensive for my tastes.

Illustration by FarmerJohn, Jan 25 2005.
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