I consider myself a pretty hardcore Transformers Generation 1 fan. I have a ton of Masterpieces of both G1 Decepticons and Autobots (including my personal favourite Megatron and Starscream) and already have the HasLab Victory Saber on pre-order. The point I’m trying to make is I’ve never balked at spending hundreds on Transformers merchandise. At least that was until I saw the Kickstarter for the Transformers Generation 1 Chess Set.

Now before I tell you how much the thing costs, I’m going to ask YOU how much you’d honestly pay if you’re a hardcore fan? Remember, it’s just a small custom chessboard and 32 handpainted Transformers Generation 1 characters as the chess pieces. They don’t even have articulation and look like they can easily be 3D printed.

What would you pay?

200? 300? Maybe $400? That’s what I’d pay too. I was even considering getting the set due to its kitsch value.

Then I saw the Kickstarter and realized that they were asking for US$600!

That’s about SG$807…and it’s before shipping.

It doesn’t even ship to Singapore (why the hell not?!), so if you’re interested in it, you’re going to have to ship it to freight forwarders like Comgateway or vPost. No damn way am I spending that much on a plastic chess set.

I guess I’m not the only one thinking the asking price is a bit too high for what the product is worth. As of right now, the project’s only about 1/4 funded…which isn’t a good sign considering that there’s only 17 days left to go.

Perhaps that’s also due to the weird choice of characters being used for the chess pieces.

Sure, you got the big names like Optimus Prime and Megatron, but the Decepticon side is filled with B-listers like Thrust, Thundercracker and Skywarp. I honestly can’t believe that not even a single Constructicon made the list considering how iconic Devastator is to Generation 1 fans.

I do like that Bumblebee is listed as a Pawn though. God knows that overused piece of crap isn’t worth more than a sacrificial lamb. Yes, even as a kid I couldn’t stand Bumblebee. The movies’ fixation on him has made that hate even more acute.

If you need a Transformers Generation 1 Chess Set in your life though, this is probably your ONE chance into making it a reality. Is it worth the cost though?

Sal's been in the industry since the early 2000s. He's written for a ton of gaming and tech publications including Playworks, Hardwarezone, HWM and GameAxis. Recently, Sal served as a juror for the Indie Game Awards at Taipei Game Show 2020. A geek and hardcore gamer, Sal will play everything, on any platform.