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In the meantime, there exists quite a variety of different versions for 3D-Chess.
One of the most famous is - and will remain - the 3D-Chess-Set you know from the
Television Series STAR TREK.
Contrary to the impression held by some people that 3D-Chess is just a fictious game, this game is as real as variants of other games developed by fans of games (as an example I name here "Settlers of Catan" distributed in the US by "Mayfair Games" - see http://www.universityofcatan.com/scenarios/scenarios.html ).
Already by watching the different STAR TREK Series (i.e. TOS & TNG) you learn that there is some freedom to the appearance of the 3D-Chessboard. The only thing which matters is the number of squares and their position in relation to one another. In the Manufacture Guide you will find a totally new design. The advantages of this design are that the set is inexpensive to build, and even more that the set is predestined to be use as Travel-3D-Chess. Nonetheless this design has its own elegance.
Regarding rules for three-dimensional chess:
It is written in the "STAR TREK ENCYCLOPEDIA" , page 342: "... No Official rules were ever developed for this game, although ever-ingenious Star Trek fans have developed several sets of rules for themselves. ..." (THE STAR TREK ENCYCLOPEDIA ; MICHAEL OKUDA , DENISE OKUDA , DEBBIE MIREK ; Simon & Schuster Ltd. ; 1994 ; Great Britain).
One of the eldest and most well known rules for "STAR TREK Chess" is the first version created by Andrew Bartmess (in the meantime, a version 5.0 has been made available). But without belittling the rules of Bartmess, these rules just aren't specific enough for a tournament, and can only be used as hints.
The Tournament Rules for Three-Dimensional Chess on this site are the result of plenty of work done by me (Jens Meder) and some friends (e.g. Michael Klein). The beginning of this work goes back to the year 1992, when the first article about 3D-Chess written by Michael Klein was published in TREKWORLD 24. (TREKWORLD was the official club magazine of STAR TREK CENTAL EUROPE - Augsburg; Germany. The club is now the Official Star Trek Fan Club - Germany.)
From this a complete rule set was developed. For the wording, a German translation of the " FIDE Laws of Chess " (dated 1993) was used. (The FIDE Laws of Chess are the international rules covering (two-dimensional) chess.)
Other sources for this work include:
Today's FIDE Laws of Chess came into force on 1 July 2005, and were adopted at the
75th FIDE Congress at Calvia (Mallorca).
Most of the changes simply involve a more detailed description of the task and rights of the arbiter, without changing the content. Because of this a total revision of the 3D-Chess-Rules isn't necessary.
Nevertheless (and even though it is very unlikely there will be a big tournament of "STAR TREK" chess soon), I like to implement the "mobile phone ban" (see arcticle 12.2.).
The FIDE Laws of Chess (in English, as well as German) can be downloaded via my Chess-Link-Page .
Last but not least, I like to thank all the friends of three-dimensional chess who have helped to improve the TOURNAMENT RULES, and continue to do so, by sending in letters. This is a living document, to be changed on an as-needed basis.
If you have questions concerning the rules, Manufacture Guide or about the 3D-Chess-Problems, don't hesitate to contact me (the author). Ideas and suggestions are always welcome.
Last Revision 12.MAY.2006
This is a non-profit fan publication. Use is purely for entertainment and NO infringement is intended! Star Trek; Star Trek: The Next Generation; Star Trek: Deep Space Nine and Star Trek: Voyager are registered trademarks of Paramount Pictures Corporation.