For a oroject, I am looking to track the location of several game pieces on a game board using NFC chips. This board is made up of a grid and would need to send the location back to a device. I was wondering what the best solution to creating this would be.

Using several readers seems like overkill and has the possibility of interfering with each other.

  • 3
    \$\begingroup\$ One reader, many antennas, and scanning each antenna in turn? How many locations do you have? How large is each location? How quickly do you need the updates? \$\endgroup\$
    – jcaron
    Commented Dec 2, 2019 at 15:30
  • \$\begingroup\$ Do you have to ID each game piece or are they identical? \$\endgroup\$
    – Ocanath
    Commented Dec 2, 2019 at 18:08
  • \$\begingroup\$ Does it have to be NFC? Uniquely identify each game piece, or just that "some piece" is present in a spot? \$\endgroup\$
    – spuck
    Commented Dec 2, 2019 at 18:56

1 Answer 1


It sounds like a similar problem that chess computers do. A regular grid, with 64 spaces and 32 pieces to track.

The chess boards that do this range from simple detection: knowing only that a piece is present in a square, to identifying each individual piece. For chess, knowing only “present/not present” is sufficient because the beginning state of the board is fixed, so it’s easy logic to track the moves and the game progresses. That is, until someone picks up two pieces, I suppose. :)

Some ideas for tracking chess pieces, including reed switches, Hall effect sensors, capacitive sensors, and NFC tags are discussed here: http://chess.fortherapy.co.uk/home/chess-piece-identification-technology/


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