Tulane University, 2004 - $12,680

With the help of a 2004 Advanced E-Team grant, this Tulane University E-Team created Deflexion, an electronic board game that combines the strategic appeal of chess with modern technology. Players take turns moving Egyptian-themed, mirrored pieces around the playing field, then fire a low-powered laser diode to bounce light off the mirrors and illuminate their opponent’s pieces, eliminating them from the game. The goal is to defeat your opponent by strategically maneuvering pieces so the laser hits the “pharaoh” piece, similar to a king in chess.

Along with being a commercial success, Deflexion (now called Khet) has received significant press and industry recognition. The game was featured at the New York International Toy Fair; named one of Wired magazine’s “supercool” toys for 2005; dubbed “very cool” by Playthings, a toy industry publication; and praised as “innovative” by BusinessWeek. Khet is commercially available through the company’s website ( and select retail outlets around the US.