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Make Your Own Dinosaur Themed Chess Set for Kids - Save a Fortune

January 08, 2012 | Comments: 0 | Views: 410

A Dinosaur Themed Chess Set

Many young children take up chess at an early age. They are often encouraged to do so by a parent or grandparent and a grasp of this classic game will serve them well throughout their lives. Chess may be regarded as very complex, but it in essence it only involves a total of sixteen playing pieces on each side and a board with sixty-four marked squares to play it on.

There is always the temptation to treat your young chess players to their own set and why not, after all a knowledge of chess is an asset in many social situations. It is a hobby that is almost timeless and it appeals to both young and old alike. We know of a number of parents who have spent large sums on the procurement of a chess set for their children, perhaps in the hope that their offspring will go on to be a grand master. Here is a fun and money-saving idea for parents whose children like chess but also like dinosaurs - why not make your own, bespoke chess set using prehistoric animal model playing pieces.

A Do-it-Yourself Dinosaur Chess Set - The Playing Board

Creating your very own customised dinosaur-themed chess set is simple. By doing so you combine a child's fascination with dinosaurs with the desire to practice and build up their skills as chess player. Let's start with the playing board. This consists of a total of sixty-four squares, laid out in a grid - eight squares by eight squares. Traditionally, the board is laid out with alternate black and white squares but any contrasting colours can be used.

Start by selecting a large piece of cardboard or plain card to make the base for your board. Draw up an 8 x 8 grid design. Now all you have to do is to paint or colour in the playing surface. We advise that you make the individual squares larger than in other chess sets, this will help young children place and move their pieces during the game. Trim to size, but remember to put in a border, this adds a nice finishing touch and you can number the grid numerically and using letters just like some professional sets. Some people might be a little uncertain how to fill in the squares, here is a tip on how to do it. The thing to remember is to put a light coloured square in the top left corner and another light coloured square in the diagonally opposite square (bottom right corner), then it is simply a case of colouring in or painting alternate squares. This is a task you can share with your young chess player, they soon get the idea and it can be fun helping to build your very own, customised set.

A Do-it-Yourself Dinosaur Chess Set - The Playing Pieces

Each player in a game of chess has sixteen pieces, the opposing forces are made up as follows:

1 x Queen, 1 x King, 2 x Knights, 2 x Castles, 2 x Bishops or Rooks and 8 Pawns.

So in order to combine a love of dinosaurs with an interest in chess, all you have to do is make the chess pieces dinosaur models and you are sorted. To create a chess set you may need a total of thirty-two playing pieces, but in essence you only require twelve different prehistoric animal models to make up a set.

Which Dinosaurs for Which Chess Pieces?

The choice is entirely yours, you can even make up a set based on your young dinosaur fan's favourite dinosaurs, it really does not matter. A chess set can probably be created made up of dinosaur toys in the house, or parents can purchase inexpensive dinosaur models to help create their own, personal prehistoric animal themed game.

Here are some guidelines from our palaeontologists to help point you in the right direction. First the Queen, the most powerful piece on the board, choose a T. rex model for this piece, and to oppose the T. rex, select a model of another fierce carnivore - Spinosaurus, for example. Large predators, tend to be at the top of the food chain, so it is logical to feature carnivores for the most important pieces. For the Kings, to accompany the T. rex, perhaps a model of a slightly smaller carnivore, Ceratosaurus, to partner the Spinosaurus how about a model of a Carnotaurus?

Knights, Castles and Bishops/Rooks can be made up of models of plant-eating dinosaurs. Most model sets feature horned dinosaurs such as Triceratops (these make excellent Knights), armoured dinosaurs such as Ankylosaurus and Euoplocephalus are ideal models to represent the Castles. As for the Bishops, choose a duck-billed dinosaur model. In our set, we have White Bishops represented by a light coloured model of a duck-billed dinosaur called Olorotitan, for the opposing Black Bishops we have a dark coloured model of another type of duck-billed dinosaur - a Corythosaurus.

The Pawns are a little more tricky. You need eight matching models for each side. In one of our sets of prehistoric animals there are some super models of fairly diminutive dinosaurs, examples of Ornithopods. It is these toys that we use to represent pawns in our own customised prehistoric animal chess sets. We have representing the White Pawns a lovely set of Hypsilophodon replicas, whilst the Black Pawns are represented by eight replicas of an animal we have described as Dryosaurus. To distinguish these pieces from the others in the set, we have selected bipedal dinosaur toys, it just helps them to stand out more against the four-footed Stegosaurs and Triceratops, for example. Lay out your pieces and start to play.

Quick Tips

1). When designing the playing board, have an idea of the dinosaur models that you intend to use to create your own chess set. Make sure the squares you create are big enough for the models to sit on them comfortably.

2). Choose meat-eaters for the King and Queen, opt for plant-eating dinosaurs for the rest of the set if you can.

3). Make sure the models can stand up! You don't want your game ruined by one model falling over and disturbing other pieces in play. Choose sturdy models and make sure they are stable.

4). Keep a list of which dinosaur model represents which chess piece. We found using the border of the playing board to keep a list proved handy. When creating your playing surface, insert a space for a playing piece guide worked very well.

All you have to do is play the game. This is a simple idea, one that helps theme up a chess set for a young dinosaur fan. Such a set featuring their favourite dinosaurs will help them to maintain their enthusiasm for chess and it will save you having to purchase an expensive dinosaur chess set from a shop.

Everything Dinosaur is run by parents, teachers and real dinosaur experts. Visit our website to view the very latest dinosaur and prehistoric animal models.

To learn more about the products and services we offer at Everything Dinosaur visit Everything Dinosaur

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