Hasbro, makers of the Monopoly board game, were taken by surprise when they launched a realworld, online version of the game.
Monopoly City Streets (tinyurl.com/monstreets) uses Google Maps as its game board. Players start with $3 million in Monopoly dollars to “purchase” actual streets and build up property nearly anywhere they wish in the world. Each street is only available for purchase by one player and can be traded or hoarded in the pursuit of real estate domination.
Players earn rent each day based on the property they own, and chance cards offer the ability to make bonus buildings like parks, schools, and wind farms or even put hazards on other people’s properties to sabotage their rent value. Players can only remove a hazard by bulldozing it off their property, again through the use of chance cards.
Within hours, the Web went crazy for the new game. Response was so big, the game’s servers crashed and complaints soon began, from allegations of cheating to duplicated usernames. Of course, many were disappointed that streets they wanted to “own” had already been “bought”.
At press time, Hasbro said it planned to restart the game to deal with these and other issues.
The free online game, a promotion for the new board version of Monopoly, is to run until the end of January. Keep up with developments at blog. monopolycitystreets.com