New York City chess set

Originally published at:


Gee, now I kind of want so see the white and black with pieces from two different cities…Say, NYC vs Chicago.


Hmmm, for me, as a NYC resident who could give a shit about 1wtc I’d go with…

King - The Met Museum
Queen - The Met Opera*
Bishop - trinity church
Knight - Police station (9th precinct specifically)
Rook - subway station (atlantic ave)
Pawn - bodega

*read what you will into my weird athropo-gender-essentialism…


NYC set should add a Trump Tower joker piece. Moves 1 to 6 squares on a dice roll in whatever direction the wind happens to be blowing.


“could” or “couldn’t” give a shit?

1 Like

Those are definitely fun suggestions (especially for the Knight and Rook). I’m guessing that the set designers had to balance ‘icons’ selected against the ‘visual role’ of each representative piece, how each piece sits relative to each other (acceptable spacing) and how each sits within square (not too wide or narrow a piece); in a word… aesthetics. (ex: The Metropolitan Museum’s aspect ratio would have looked a bit off on the board.)


I was surprised, on a recent train trip through NYC, to notice this super-tall building, of which I’d never heard, towering over mid-town. It’s got the highest top floor in the city, it’s the 3rd tallest building in the country, and yet, I suppose on account of its mundane rectangularity, gets no love from the skyline chesspiece designers of the world.

“New York City one is much more attractive”

But the London one has dildos!


Its numbers are very impressive, but it’s just so non-descript; absolutely nothing architecturally interesting about it. It just doesn’t have the ‘legs’ for NYC symbolism.

1 Like

I suppose it shows I am a terrible person, but this set always makes me laugh:


It’s hard – there’s so many iconic buildings to choose from that I can’t imagine anything would make everybody happy. I mean, I’m ok with 1WTC being there – not because it’s a particularly interesting to look at building (because it really isn’t), but it’s at least important.

I’d personally would have much preferred them to incorporate truly beautiful and iconic buildings like the Woolworth or New York Life building (yes, I’m a sucker for Cass Gilbert architecture).

I like the way you think.

1 Like

I’m trying to come up with a good set for San Francisco. Maybe:

King - Transamerica Pyramid
Queen - Salesforce Tower
Bishop - St Mary’s, AKA Our Lady of Maytag
Knight - Sutro Tower
Rook - Coit Tower (or Palace of Fine Arts?)
Pawn - Painted Ladies

Any suggestions?


I assume with this set, the en passant rule can be countered with a well placed “hey! I’m walkin’ here”


I’d rather have a purely historical SF set:

King - Tower of the Sun
Queen - Pacifica
Bishop - Mission San Francisco de Asis
Knight - Golden Gate Bridge
Rook - Coit Tower
Pawn - Painted Ladies

Or perhaps pit one side modern against one side traditional. The Transamerica building would indeed make a good king.

1 Like

An exceptionally dense piece that throws the whole board off-balance.

1 Like

If they’d only build another one exactly like it, and right beside it, somehow I’m sure we’d all come 'round to it…

The way our train wound down from the Bronx, through Brooklyn, then under midtown Manhattan, kept this tower central in the field of view the whole way. It brings to mind the Salesforce tower, which now dominates views of San Francisco from a surprising lot of angles, but doesn’t yet exhibit–it’s still under construction, although we’re not expecting drastic changes–any sort of iconic charm, e.g. the Transamerica pyramid, or NYC’s deco skyscrapers. History always affects the general outlook on these things, of course.

1 Like

Boston v. NY. - Yankee Stadium and Fenway could be the rooks.

I’m partial to a Redcoats v. Minutemen set I saw some years back.


This topic was automatically closed after 5 days. New replies are no longer allowed.