Monday, January 16, 2012

Monopoly Game Critique

Hitting the shelves in 1934 was the originally titled The Landlord’s Game. Hasbro & Parker Bothers’ Monopoly is a classic, multi-player board game dating back to 1904 America. Its design intended to explain the single tax theory’s negative aspects of private monopolies on condensed land.

Suggested play recommends two to six players, in turn, roll a pair of die, advancing forward x number of spaces based on the sum of the two numbers. The square on which the players token landed on will command a player to purchase the property on which he/she landed (which is otherwise auctioned to interested buyers), go to “jail”, or draw a card from either the “Community Chest” or the “Chance” card piles.

As each player collects property of one monopoly, he/she may build houses and hotels to collect income from other players who pay rent when landing on said property. As players attempt to build monopolies, trades may be made with other players. The board has 28 spaces with properties, three Chance spaces, three Community Chest spaces, a Luxury Tax space, and Income Tax space, and four corner spaces: Go, (In) Jail/Just Visiting, Free Parking, and Go to Jail.

The effectiveness of player interaction primarily depends on each player’s responsiveness to the competitive nature of the game. Players may refuse to trade with another player or form alliances. Though it may make the game more challenging or seemingly “unfair”, such tactics do not hinder the primary game play. The game will continue to be affect each player with the choices and chances provided throughout game play.

Monopoly has a good replay value. Though it provides long game play, because of the dependency on the variables (rolling die for movement, Chance/ Community Chest cards, individual play, etc.) the outcome of each game will be different from the last.

The target audience can limit the purchasing market, but is necessary for the comprehension of the game’s philosophy. A variety of themes have attracted specific target audiences (Disney, Seinfeld, Nintendo), but each kept the same rules and principles.

Fun in a game is greatly based on good company and sportsmanship. Monopoly has its own elements of fun to bring players together socially. The unpredictable roll of the die, and the thrill of survival lie within each roll. Aside from teaching the negative effects of forming monopolies, the game is ultimately a game of chance and a temporary illusion of an equal opportunity to being the final player who finishes the game in the black

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