Believing that chess could be created to express friendship, peace and collaboration on the chessboard, Dutch artist and father Felix Albers created a game in which the aim would be to unite with or ‘embrace’ the other side. This was the type of game he wanted to play with his son, to teach him not only the great game of chess, but also give a kind, mindful and philosophical meaning to chess, with the aim of teaching his son something essential about life, working together, merging strengths and finding harmony in a world with too much conflict and misunderstanding.

The Philosophy

At the heart of this chess game is finding better solutions in a challenge to unite and create harmony. In the real world, different ideas and types of knowledge can be taken on board to enact change and progress. The chess pieces represent humans and societies who are open and willing to learn from each other and find ways of developing together.

Our dream for education

Our dream is that Paco Ŝako will be played and taught not only as a strategic and challenging mind-game, but also to engage children in philosophical thinking through play. Our aim is to stimulate the philosophical and moral aspect of the game. In addition to teaching the game rules and strategies, we hope to dedicate an equal part to the meaningful side of the game by for example stimulating parents to engage in conversation about these aspects every so often during play. For younger children, parents can emphasise the friendly nature of the game by explaining the unions with simplified words such as embracing, dancing and hugging. Find out more about the game for children and ordering coloured sets here.

Symbols of peace

“Paco Ŝako” literally means “Peace Chess” translated from Esperanto.
Designed to embrace, the chess pieces themselves can be seen as symbols of love, peace, friendship and collaboration.
Technical specifications:

  • Kings height: 81 mm
  • Weight in pieces: 8 grams
  • Total weight chess set: 520 grams
  • Extra queens: 1 black / 1 white
  • Finish bottom: Felt

Future development

We plan to develop the game further over time and create more insight about strategies resulting in new openings, tricks and game plans, as well as new variations, and possible evolution in the game rules.

If you would like to hold a tournament among friends or in your area, please let us know and get in touch for tips and tricks, download a tournament schedule here or write us at our contact page.