I’ve played chess for fun since I was a kid and I enjoy it if I win or lose. The fun for me is in the game itself. I’ve been looking for a very special chess set for years and there are a lot out there–many have caught my eye, but none like the Clamp No Kiseki chess set.
As many Anime and Manga fans know, Clamp is a group of four women who created some of the best Anime for multiple generations. Some of the titles include XXXholic (pronounced holic), X/1999, Chobits, Angelic Layer, Cardcaptor Sakura and Tsubasa–just to name a few. To celebrate–so to say–a multi-volume magazine was produced that talks about the Manga, Anime and other works by Clamp. These magazines also have interviews with people involved and some other points of interest. Included with these magazines are 3 character chess pieces to collect in 12 volumes.
The Chess pieces are of amazing quality–although they appear fragile, each piece is detailed as well as a figurine and they are marked by what piece on the chess board they symbolize. Included in the complete set are 8 white “Soel” Mokona and 8 black “Larg” Mokona as the pawns for each side of the board. The white Mokona–featured in Tsubasa is sitting eating an apple while the black Mokona is…well…getting drunk on Sake. As in XXXholic, black Mokona has his glass and a bottle of Sake and is getting “loaded”–he better share with Yuko.
The white side of the board has a great selection of major characters who are more suited for heroics. The Rooks at the ends of the playing field are Misaki, holding her “Angel” Hikaru from Angelic Layer and Chi from Chobits. The Knights (next to the Rooks) are Hikaru from Magic Knight Rayearth and Akira from Clamp School Detectives. The Bishops (next to the Knights) are Kohaku from Wish and Miyuki-chan from Miyuki-chan in Wonderland. The final pieces on the white side are King Syaoran from Tsubasa and of course Cardcaptor Sakura and Tomoyo (Madison of Card Captors in the English version) from Cardcaptor Sakura.
The black side of the board features a slightly darker bunch. The Rooks are Su from Clover, with awesome wings and Ashura from RG Veda. The Knights are Kurogane from Tsubasa and Nokoru Imonoyama from Clamp School Detectives. “Kuro-Poo” (As Soel and Fai call him) features a great sword and his outfit is well detailed as in Tsubasa. The Bishops are Fai from Tsubasa and Watanuki from XXXholic. Fai has awesome detail and Watanuki is one of my favorite characters, he also has great detail of a pot and scoop, his glasses are even nice. The final pieces are King Fuma with the Shinken and red fabric wrapping from X/1999 and Queen Yuko from XXXholic wearing her great dress. Yuko’s eyes are perfect and give the look of the illustrations. My preference is the black side of the board, I’m a big fan of XXXholic and Tsubasa which are intertwined so the character selection works great.
The Clamp No Kiseki chess set has an interesting extra–extra pieces. Each side has a couple of alternates. The black side has Kamui from X/1999 as the alternate King to Fuma his X/1999 counterpart and Seishiro from X/1999 and Tokyo babylon as the alternate Bishop. Seishiro has great detail in his glasses and he’s holding a cigarette. The white side has Subaru from Tokyo babylon and X/1999 as the alternate Bishop. The only piece I’m missing from the whole set is Sakura from Cardcaptor Sakura and Tsubasa, she is the alternate queen–until I get a hold of her, Madison…I mean Tomoyo can hold her place as the other alternate queen..
Available in Japan only after sending in some certificates is a slip box to hold the magazines, a box to hold the chess pieces, a chess board and 2 more alternate kings in the form of Kero (white) and Spinel Sun (black) from Cardcaptor Sakura.
I have a very nice etched glass chess board so I’m quite happy with using that over a cardboard chess board. The pieces display out of play nicely upon it and in a game it works just as well even if its a little tight.
Some “factions” I put together are: XXXholic.
Tsubasa: Reservoir Chronicle.
X/1999 and Tokyo Babylon
…and some of my other favorites…
Eventually I’ll get my hands on the Sakura set which contains Sakura and a white and black Mokona–I “cheated” and picked up a set with the 2 Mokona pieces and put the double third piece to the side.
The Clamp No Kiseki Chess set is absolutely beautiful and worth finding it on the aftermarket if you are a fan of both Clamp and Chess. The detail is great, the quality is very nice and the fun factor speaks for itself. In chess, winning is great, but its the enjoyment that counts.
Click all photos to enlarge.
Here it is, the elusive Sakura set!
This is the Japanese version of the chess pieces and the art book, however the only thing that is really different is the language on the box and in the book.
The pieces are of course beautiful–well Sakura anyway–and they finally finish the basic set. I have decided not to remove them from the package because of the rarity and cost–which wasn’t really all that bad considering, I didn’t even have to get them from Japan which is a plus.
The art book has great pictures, I just don’t know Japanese, so reading it is out, but it doesn’t matter, I’d rather look at the art.
GRADE: EVEN MORE PERFECT!