Tri-dimensional Chess in "Star Trek"

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Walt Atwood

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Mar 3, 2002, 12:19:39 AM3/3/02
to Michael Alexander
Questions about Tri-dimensional Chess in "Star Trek", posted to
alt.tv.star-trek.tos , alt.startrek , and rec.arts.startrek.tech newsgroups:


1: Does anyone know if there were ever substantial rules made for playing
the multi-level board Chess that Spock was so fond of? If so, how does this
kind of Chess differ for that played on a conventional flat board?

2: Does anyone actually play tri-dimensional Chess in real life?

3: I dug out an old "Star Trek Communicator" magazine for a few years ago,
and the Franklin Mint was hawking an "official Star Trek" 3D Chess set, with
gold- and silver-plated pieces. Does anyone in these newsgroups actually
have one? Do you play the game at all?

4: "Queen to Queen's Level Three" was the password solicitation Scotty gave
to Kirk in "Whom Gods Destroy". "Queen to King's Level One", was the
countersign Spock replied. What is a "King's Level" as opposed to a "Queen's
Level"?

5: Did any characters in TNG, DS9, Voyager or Enterprise ever play Chess?

CaptJosh

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Mar 3, 2002, 1:08:46 AM3/3/02
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Give me a couple days and I will hunt down a copy of the real updated AND
original rules, not the crap that Franklin Mint came up with. As far as
queen's level and King's level, those you can find in standard chess
rulebooks. The king's level is the file the king starts on in a chess game.
Likewise for the queen and queen's level.

CaptJosh

"Walt Atwood" <wing...@madbbs.com> wrote in message
news:B8A71C9B.47B9F%wing...@madbbs.com...

Ruediger LANDMANN

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Mar 3, 2002, 3:49:19 AM3/3/02
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There was a fan-made set of rules for the game that was in circulation
some years ago. The author was most upset that Franklin Mint's rules
appear to be a rip-off of his, but lost in an attempt to sue them...

http://www.schooner.com/~loverso/Public/pub/humor/3dchess
http://my.ohio.voyager.net/~abartmes/tactical.htm
http://ircruise.com/stasis/copy1.htm
http://www.trekplace.com/interviews/fj-kdint05.shtml


Owen Swart

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Mar 3, 2002, 4:51:10 AM3/3/02
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>
> 5: Did any characters in TNG, DS9, Voyager or Enterprise ever play Chess?

As I recall, there was a board on Ten Forward, the 'bar' of the Enterprise
D. Data was often seen playing against La Forge, Wesley Crusher, and I think
even Worf.

William Riker was also an excellent chass player. In one episode he beat his
Ferengi captor at chess from inside the brig without even being able to see
the board!

Looking at my plans of Quark's bar and Neelix's Mess Hall, I don't see any
chessboards there. I think on DS9 they preferred Dabo, and Tuvok was always
trying to teach people to play Kaltoh.


Ruediger LANDMANN

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Mar 3, 2002, 6:18:31 AM3/3/02
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OrionCA <ori...@earthlink.net> wrote:

: Good trick, there, since 3 dimensional chess game has been around
: since the early 1900s.

Sure, but the ST board is very different from any of the other 3D chess
variants out there, and the rules are correspondingly different as well.

IRENE BATELAAN

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Mar 3, 2002, 11:36:40 AM3/3/02
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Yes, I do have the chess-set from Franklin Mint just for decoration.
But I don't play chess myself.

Instructions are included, but mine are in Dutch.


"Walt Atwood" <wing...@madbbs.com> wrote in message
news:B8A71C9B.47B9F%wing...@madbbs.com...

machf

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Mar 3, 2002, 12:51:25 PM3/3/02
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On Sun, 3 Mar 2002 11:51:10 +0200, "Owen Swart" <marthaj...@hotmail.com>
wrote:

>>
>> 5: Did any characters in TNG, DS9, Voyager or Enterprise ever play Chess?
>
>As I recall, there was a board on Ten Forward, the 'bar' of the Enterprise
>D. Data was often seen playing against La Forge, Wesley Crusher, and I think
>even Worf.
>
>William Riker was also an excellent chass player. In one episode he beat his
>Ferengi captor at chess from inside the brig without even being able to see
>the board!
>

And I remember Barclay at the end of that episode with the Citherians, were
he goes by the board and moves a piece saying "checkmate in these many moves"...
-"I didn't know you played chess" -"I don't"

--
__________ ____---____ Marco Antonio Checa Funcke
\_________D /-/---_----' Santiago de Surco, Lima, Peru
_H__/_/ http://machf.tripod.com
'-_____|( http://www.GeoCities.com/Hollywood/2645

remove the "no_me_j." and "sons.of." parts before replying

Kasey Chang (remove EATSPAM to reply)

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Mar 3, 2002, 1:32:38 PM3/3/02
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"Walt Atwood" <wing...@madbbs.com> wrote in message
news:B8A71C9B.47B9F%wing...@madbbs.com...
> Questions about Tri-dimensional Chess in "Star Trek", posted to
> alt.tv.star-trek.tos , alt.startrek , and rec.arts.startrek.tech
newsgroups:

> 1: Does anyone know if there were ever substantial rules made for
playing
> the multi-level board Chess that Spock was so fond of? If so, how does
this
> kind of Chess differ for that played on a conventional flat board?

Yes, there was, and supposedly Franklin Mint's version was ripped
right off of Star Trek fandom and the "creator" of those rules never
got paid. I read somewhere he tried unsuccessfully sued Franklin
Mint for many years without success.

[snip]

--KC

MistWing SilverTail

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Mar 3, 2002, 6:25:55 PM3/3/02
to
> And I remember Barclay at the end of that episode with the Citherians,
were
> he goes by the board and moves a piece saying "checkmate in these many
moves"...
> -"I didn't know you played chess" -"I don't"

While they probably didn't intend it this way, I always liked to interpret
that scene as a practical joke by Barclay. Everyone one the ship knows that
he was temporarily super-intelligent. So, when he moved the piece and
claimed "Checkmate in ...x... moves", the players will be spending a lot of
time trying to figure out where it is... when, in fact, it doesn't exist.


--

MistWing SilverTail

Dragon Code
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j+ p-- sx--

Garin Sutton

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Mar 3, 2002, 7:21:17 PM3/3/02
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In response to this post:
 
1. There are official rules to the game of tri-dimensional chess. In most cases they come with the game. The game is set up similarly and is played in much the same way as the flat version (2-D chess), but there are several rule variations to account for the extra levels (such as movement of the attack boards).
 
2. The game is a bit complex, and I only play it with my friends as a curiosity (but it was featured in an episode of Nash Bridges)
 
3. I have the game, but the Franklin Mint has stopped producing it as they phased out all of their Star Trek lines.
 
4. The Queen's level is simply the queen's side of the board, as the King's level refers to the other side. This notation is seen in flat chess when talking about squares or pieces such as the "Queen's Rook 4", or "King's Bishop's pawn."
 
5. The game was seen often in Ten Forward and was featured in a few episodes such as the nth degree in which Barclay puts someone four moves from checkmate with the remnants of his super-intelligence.
 

Rusty Magic

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Mar 3, 2002, 8:42:57 PM3/3/02
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I got this from the net awhile ago:
Credit goes to whoever posted it originally, I don't know who it was
though, sorry...

------
"Recently, there have been a number of requests for the rules for
3D chess. The rules for Tridimensional Chess (as played in TOS)
were published in October 1977, in an article by Andrew Bartmess,
in "Star Trek Giant Poster Book" #14. Since I have this
magazine, I decided to help out by retyping the article.

-----------------------------------------
TRIDIMENSIONAL CHESS

by ANDREW BARTMESS
-----------------------------------------
reprinted without permission from
STAR TREK GIANT POSTER BOOK
Voyage 14
Published by Paradise Press Inc.
October 1977
-----------------------------------------

TRIDIMENSIONAL CHESS is an extremely beautiful and logical game, known
and respected from one edge of the galaxy to another. From Cestus III
to the planet Vulcan, from Sol III to the very heart of the Klingon
Empire, it is played by numerous forms of intelligent life and honored
for its cool logic. It is not generally known, however, that the
standard from of the game, so widely played in the United Federation
of Planets, can be traced back to its basic form on 20th century
Earth...

A STANDARD tri-dimensional chess set consists of three main boards and
four moveable attack boards. The lowermost board holds White's
chessmen at the opening of the game and is termed "White's Board (W)".
The middle board is the "Neutral Board (N)" and the top board is
"Black's Board (B)". The attack boards start the game on the rear
pegs of the Black and White Boards, and are referred to as "Queen's
Level (QL)" and "King's Level (KL)", depending upon which Level holds
the King and Queen at the start of the game. (See illustration of
starting arrangement.)


| |
+---+---+---+---+
| | | | |
+---+---+---+---+
| P | P | P | P |
+---+---+ +---+---+---+---+ +---+---+
| P | P | |KT | B | B | KT| | P | P |
+---+---+ +---+---+---+---+ +---+---+
| R | Q | | K | R |
+---+---+ +---+---+
STARTING POSITION


The easiest way to learn Tri-D chess is to begin by looking at the
chess board from the top. When this is done, the three main boards
form one board, eight squares long and four wide, with the attack
boards overhanging at the corners. Imagine this overview as one flat
board; any move you can make in a standard chess game (flat board),
you can make in Tri-D chess, but you have the option of deciding which
level you wish it to land on. Since every overlapping square is the
same color, you can land on either. For this reason, two chessmen of
the same (or different) colors can occupy the same square (on dif-
ferent levels). For notation purposes, the main board is listed in
four files (Queen's Knight, Queen's Bishop, King's Bishop and King's
Knight, from left to right) and eight ranks, followed by the board
which the piece lands on (Example: Queen to QKt6, N).

The attack boards, when occupied by a pawn or less, may move to any
adjacent pin position and such action constitutes one move. [There is
a pin located above and below the corners of each of the three main
boards.] The attack boards are fantastic devices; in three quick
moves you can move your pawn into your opponent's "Queening Zone" (the
last rank of the B or W boards, or the attack boards) and reclaim a
captured Queen.

The Levels have their own notation; Queen's Level One is the square on
which the Queen starts the game, QL2 is the Queen's Pawn's starting
position, QL3 is the QR and QL4 is the QRP. Reversely, KL1 holds the
King, KL2 is KP, KL3 is KR and KL4 is the KRP. This notation is like
the ranks; when looking at your opponent's attack boards, you number
them exactly like your own.

There are different ways of opening a Tri-D chess game: you may open
with a Knight (Example: Kt-QB3, N) or with one of the four pawns on
the main board (P-QKt4, W). Notice that the pawns on the main board
must be moved to clear the way for the pawns on the attack boards.
(See overview of game board.) Additionally, once the King's pawn and
Queen's pawn have been moved, the Rook, Queen and King have the
ability to leave the attack boards and enter game play.


QUEEN'S KING'S
LEVEL LEVEL
+---+---+ +---+---+
| 4 | 2 | | 2 | 4 |
+---O---++---+---++---O---+
| 3 | 1 || | || 1 | 3 |
+---+---++---+---++---+---+
| | | | |---BLACK BOARD
+---+---+---+---+O
| | | | ||
+---+---+---+---++
| | | | ||---NEUTRAL BOARD
O===+===+===+===O+O---pin
| | | | ||
+---+---+---+---++
| | | | ||
O===+===+===+===O+
| | | | |---WHITE BOARD
+---+---++---+---++---+---+
| 4 | 2 || | || 2 | 4 |
+---O---++---+---++---O---+
| 3 | 1 | | 1 | 3 |
+---+---+ +---+---+
QUEEN'S KING'S
LEVEL LEVEL

OVERVIEW OF GAME BOARD


The pins at the four corners of each board are listed in this manner:
all pins on the King's side of the board are "King's Pins" and all
those on the Queen's side of the board are "Queen's Pins". On each
board, the closest pin is designated One, the one farthest away is
Two. Thus, the attack boards begin the game on QP1 and KP1.

After three pieces have left the QL or KL, you are left with one pawn
which overhangs the main board. To free it, you may move (for exam-
ple) QL-QP1, N and in your next move cross to the other side of the
board; QL-KP1, N, thus placing the pawn over the board. Once the at-
tack boards have left the opening position, they become capturable
pieces. An attack board (lets say White's) can be captured in this
manner: the attack board is occupied by *one* of White's pieces. If
one of Black's chessmen can capture White's piece, and become the only
piece on the attack board, the board is considered to be Black's prop-
erty. Black would control three attack boards instead of the two he
started the game with. White can re-capture the Level in the same
manner, and so it goes. If you can capture the attack board with a
pawn, you can begin moving it immediately! Empty Levels are effec-
tively "neutral" and remain the property of the original owner, free
to maneuver. To be captured, an attack board must be occupied by a
chessman.

Any time after the first move a King may "castle" by exchanging places
with the King's Rook. To castle on the Queen's side you must move the
Queen out of QL1. Once this square is clear, you move K-QL1 and QR-
KL1, thus castling.

A piece may *not* drop down a level to the same square. Such a move,
when viewed from above, would be the same as standing still. When
making a move that remains on one board, all moves are the same as on
a regular chess board. When in doubt on a move that crosses up or
down a level (for example, you wish to move a Queen from QL1, B, to
QKt8, W) you must look down from the top at the board. If a piece is
visibly blocking your move (just as if the squares were one flat
board), you can't make the move. You can, however, move your piece
onto the square just above or below the block and attempt the move in
more than one turn.

The strategy of Tri-D chess is simple: by deploying your men all over
the levels you increase the possibility that your opponent will over-
look one of your key men. Conversely, you must check out your moves
carefully before making them, or you may discover that your Queen has
been taken by a Pawn that was hidden three levels down. This is also
the main reason for moving and inverting (QL X) the attack boards,
which by the way, counts as one move. Just one more out-of-the-way
square to be overlooked by your opponent. Although looking at the
game from the top is a good way to learn how to play, by the time you
have played a few games you should be able to play without standing
up, by just envisioning the moves in your mind.

Remember, a good working knowledge of standard chess is essential be-
fore attempting this challenging game. Good luck, and may Tri-
Dimensional chess bring you many hours of enjoyment."
------

Hope that helps ya..


Walt Atwood <wing...@madbbs.com> wrote in message news:<B8A71C9B.47B9F%wing...@madbbs.com>...

Walt Atwood

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Mar 3, 2002, 10:53:11 PM3/3/02
to
In article dho48use3j80nhj7n...@4ax.com on 3/3/02 12:51 PM,
machf via no_me_...@hijos.de.terra.com.pe wrote :

> And I remember Barclay at the end of that episode with the Citherians, were
> he goes by the board and moves a piece saying "checkmate in these many
> moves"...
> -"I didn't know you played chess" -"I don't"
>
> --
> __________ ____---____ Marco Antonio Checa Funcke
> \_________D /-/---_----' Santiago de Surco, Lima, Peru
> _H__/_/ http://machf.tripod.com
> '-_____|( http://www.GeoCities.com/Hollywood/2645


--------------------------------------------------------------------

Wasn't this the TNG episode "The Nth Degree"? (3rd or 4th season?)

Was the 3-D Chessboard the same kind used in "Classic" TREK?

Alan Wong

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Mar 3, 2002, 11:58:05 PM3/3/02
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"Garin Sutton" <gsu...@cisunix.unh.edu> wrote in message
news:a5ueoe$dor$1...@tabloid.unh.edu...

>In response to this post:
>3. I have the game, but the Franklin Mint has stopped producing it as they
phased out all of their Star Trek lines.


They are? nooooooOOOO, I wanted to get those little pewter starship replicas
they had! *sob*

Though I have the chess set, and it's been in a box for the last 5 years :)
I didn't have a proper cabinet for it and i didn't want it collected dust.

Alan

Timo S Saloniemi

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Mar 4, 2002, 2:42:47 AM3/4/02
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In article <a5srml$7g3$1...@ctb-nnrp2.saix.net> "Owen Swart" <marthaj...@hotmail.com> writes:
>>
>> 5: Did any characters in TNG, DS9, Voyager or Enterprise ever play Chess?

>Looking at my plans of Quark's bar and Neelix's Mess Hall, I don't see any


>chessboards there. I think on DS9 they preferred Dabo, and Tuvok was always
>trying to teach people to play Kaltoh.

Sisko and Dax did play chess, but the 2D variant. It featured big time
in "Equilibrium", for example. (They also played fast and loose with the
classic rules, as their board was set sideways, white squares to the
left corners!)

Timo Saloniemi

Owen Swart

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Mar 5, 2002, 10:55:55 AM3/5/02
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"Owen Swart" <marthaj...@hotmail.com> wrote in message
news:a5srml$7g3$1...@ctb-nnrp2.saix.net...
Correction: Captain Sisko keeps a Tri-D chess board in his quarters.


CaptJosh

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Mar 5, 2002, 10:40:40 PM3/5/02
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Ok, I have the link of the page of the guy who actually wrote the original
rules of Tri-D chess for the Star Trek Giant Poster Book. It is:
http://home.interhop.net/~bag/startrek.htm
It contains the original rules as he wrote them and his latest revisions,
for the ORIGINAL tri-d chess board, rather than the bastardization that the

Franklin Mint came up with.

CaptJosh

"CaptJosh" <capt...@phantos.subspacelink.com> wrote in message
news:a5se6t$9saol$1...@ID-107133.news.dfncis.de...

John Savard

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Apr 7, 2022, 6:33:33 PMApr 7
to
I have good news for people; a much less expensive licensed set for
Star Trek three-dimensional chess is available from a company called
The Noble Collection.

Oh, and the reason I dug up this really old thread?

On my web site, at

http://www.quadibloc.com/chess/ch050501.htm

I make note of the Bartmess rules for three-dimensional chess,
note that I have some criticisms of those rules, and propose a
modified set of rules for the game that addresses the issues
which I have identified.

Since Star Trek belongs to Paramount and not me, I can't
claim a proprietary interest in these rules, so if Paramount
and/or their licensees decided to run with them, I won't sue,
and somehow I suspect Bartmess never did either because
of Paramount's superseding proprietary interest in all things
Star Trek.

John Savard

Jack Bohn

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Apr 12, 2022, 12:11:05 PMApr 12
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The least of the things John Savard wrote:
>
> Oh, and the reason I dug up this really old thread?

Just as a curiosity, what did you use to dig up this really old thread, and how easy was it to notice that it was a really old thread?

--
-Jack
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