After watching the movie Thiruvilayaadal, I kept thinking of the scene where Ganesha competes with Karthikeya for the divine mango of knowledge. After seeing the magical wizards chess from Harry Potter, games like Battle Chess where the pieces come alive and finally a specialized Indian version of chess pieces from Rajasthan, I was really inspired.
I decided to do my own version of it with Ganesha and Karthikeya playing a game of chess to win the mango with a special stylized version of chess pieces based on the Kailash family!
Here, Shiva is the King, Parvati is the Queen, Karthikeya is the Bishop (because he’s supposed to be well versed in the Vedas, even testing Brahma once and imprisoning him once because he couldn’t answer something basic), Nandi is the Knight (because he’s Shiva’s ride) and Ganesha is the Rook (or the elephant as the piece is called in Indian chess, which seemed appropriate). The Ganas become the Pawns. I did consider adding peacocks and mice to the set but in the end decided against it.
Astute observers will notice that the game is already over with Ganesha making a checkmate in 2 moves (the fastest way to end a game) with his Queen against Karthikeya’s King.