That Star Wars Monster Chess Game is Real

That Star Wars Monster Chess Game is Real

Guys and Gals;  It’s happening. We are entering an age we have only ever dreamed of.

Dejarik (yes, I knew that. I’m an uber-nerd okay…gimme a break), that monster chess game seen in Star Wars: A New Hope and briefly in The Force Awakens, is coming. and its name is HoloGrid: Monster Battle


Tippett Studio and HappyGiant today announced an original Next-Gen Augmented and Virtual Reality gaming concept, HoloGrid: Monster Battle. A “Hybrid” Board Game, Collectible Card Game (CCG), and Digital Game in one, it delivers to players a new type of gaming experience.

HoloGrid: Monster Battle is being built for next gen AR & VR platforms, but will also release for mobile devices and PCs, giving the player the feeling that these creatures are doing battle right in front of you. The team is looking at all options from Publishing deals, to Crowdfunding.

…The project is [using] Photogrammetry to scan Tippett’s real life physical monsters into 3D digital assets for the game, giving them a level of detail and character unlike any other.

HoloGrid: Monster Battle is akin to games such as Magic: The Gathering or Hearthstone, but uses physical playing cards to trigger Augmented Reality creatures and a gameboard. Players will be able to play head-to-head, either locally or remotely, and offline play is possible as well.

What takes this very cool idea and puts it in a league of its own for me is the fact that Phil Tippet, the guy who made the monsters on the Star Wars chess board is part of the team making Hologrid: Monster Battles. To see someone take an original idea, and after many years, get to make it a reality in VR, is such a fantastic story I can’t help but feel nostalgic and happy and have a big grin plastered on my face all at the same time.




Phil Tippett is a 2-time Academy Award winning Visual Effects Supervisor and Director best known for his work on the original Star Wars films, Jurassic Park, Robocop, The Force Awakens, and many more. Tippett also created the “Holo Chess” scene in the original Star Wars, which he recreated for the Force Awakens.

Tippett Studio, founded in 1984 by…Tippett, is an Academy Award®-winning media production company specializing in CG animation and digital effects for feature films, television, commercials, VR and AR. The Berkeley, CA based company has created visual effects for blockbuster movies including Star Wars: The Force Awakens, Jurassic World, Ted, The Twilight Saga, Cloverfield, Starship Troopers, Jurassic Park and Robocop. Tippett Studio’s commercial work has garnered four Clio awards. Tippett Studio is currently in production on a large format ride for a Chinese Theme Park

Obviously, things are still in an Alpha stage and it’s early development time, but the idea is solid and the ability to take monsters designed in the real world and transport them into the digital and VR worlds is an idea with such potential I cannot help but be excited. Tippet Studios obviously has quite a pedigree behind it, and while HappyGiant  might not have had massive success, and a few questionable projects, I’m optimistic they can handle this project well and turn it into a force to be reckoned with in the world of VR.

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Editor-in-Chief of With a soft spot for epics, sagas and tales of all types, Jacob approaches games as ways to tell stories. He's particularly interested in indie games because of the freedom they have to tell different stories, often in more interesting and innovative ways than Triple A titles.