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Sunday, July 19, 2009

MoCRAPoly

I went up to Tamworth on the winter holidays. While I was there I ended up going to McDonald's every second day or so to use the free wi-fi, and when I was getting some food I noticed that they had a promotion where you get a meal deal and for $1 you can get a mini board game. I got a mini Monopoly. The thing is, it's not really Monopoly at all.

One of the reasons Monopoly is so popular, I think, is the strategic element, i.e. when to buy properties, when to morgage, etc. Now, I was expecting this small, one dollar McDonald's Monopoly to be a bit simplified, but for some idiotic reason this version has had every element of strategy unceremoniously removed. The rules allow absolutely no choices to be made in the gameplay, reducing the game to pure chance, and reducing the players to bored dice rolling machines. (In fact, there are no dice, just a stupid spinner thing.) The game board (actually not a board but a piece of paper) has been horribly simplified, so the properties don't even have names, let alone title deed cards. There's no Chance cards. No Community Chest. No utilities. No train stations. No jail.

Basically it's dumbed down beyond recognition. It's even more dumbed down than Monopoly Junior. Even when I was a kid I could see that Monopoly Junior was bullshit. Not because it's set in a fun park (although that's dumb too) but because there's no choice involved, and therefore no strategy. And yet, this McDonald's version is even worse than that. It just shouldn't be called Monopoly.

I want my dollar back.

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