249: Chess Photo

Explain xkcd: It's 'cause you're dumb.
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Chess Photo
chess photo.png


Whimsy. Why do people do most of the odd things they do? When it isn't because of a cruelly in-bred stupidity, it is because of whimsy. There isn't very much that needs explaining in this one, perhaps only chess, a strategy board game much talked about in xkcd, and rollercoasters which is an amusement park ride filled with twists, turns, rises, falls, loops, and sometimes themed areas of the park to try to tell a story while on the ride.

This comic inspired people to try this in real life, to awesome effect.


[Friend 2 sits at a desk with glue, chess pieces, and a chessboard while Friend 1 looks over his shoulder.]

Friend 1: What are you doing?

Friend 2: Gluing down chess pieces.

Friend 1: Why?

Friend 2: Because there's a picture I've always wanted... I'll need your coat to sneak this onto the ride.

[A photograph of a roller coaster ride with Friend 2 sitting in the first car, chin in hand, thinking over the chessboard. The photograph has "Mega Coaster 3000 souvenir photo" written on the margin.]

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I've seen pictures of people doing this before I met xkcd, and I just read the confirmation at knowyourmeme.com that Randall started this. This is friggin' amazing. 15:07, 17 November 2013 (UTC)

Comics Missing!-- 10:38, 5 December 2013 (UTC)

Could you compile these at the community portal? I'll see what I can do about this. Davidy²²[talk] 11:16, 5 December 2013 (UTC)
It's 5 in the morning, and this fixed now. Davidy²²[talk] 13:03, 5 December 2013 (UTC)

The last sentence has always been upsetting me and never found the time to comment/correct: Blindfold chess doesn't require any actual blindfold, it's just called that way because the two players don't need a board and just communicate their moves. Therefore, the "blindfold" is not redundant, it is rather the simplest way to play chess on a roller coaster. -- 22:07, 16 August 2014 (UTC)

Updated. Anyone cares enough to check it? 22:05, 1 April 2015 (UTC)
It wasn't started by Randall though. It might have been popularised by him, but there are records on the net of people doing this as far back as 1994. 01:21, 6 October 2015 (UTC)

On the ascent of a roller coaster, I took out my small point and shoot camera to take an arm length selfie of us in the front row, and the ride stopped. A worker came walking up the service ramp, and asked for my camera so she could put it in the bag hold area, where I could pick it up when we were done. Luckily nobody else on the ride was pissed off since we had gone only like 50 feet. Anyone know what they would do if they caught you with a chessboard? 20:33, 14 June 2016 (UTC)