Concerned, apparently, that the generation raised on smartphones and YouTube lacks the attention span to play regular Monopoly, Hasbro is coming out with a version called Monopoly Empire that’s supposed to last 30 minutes, start to finish.
I understand what Hasbro’s going for here. When I was a kid, I wasn’t a fan of the game because it took forever. I’d bail after a couple of hours, and I was never around when it ended.
But, then, a few Christmases ago, Thing 1 got a Monopoly game for Christmas. It came in a wooden box, and everything except the logo in the center of the board is retro. It was nice, as Monopoly sets go.
My wife had to work over Christmas break, so I stayed home and decided to give the game a second chance.
Thing 1 set up the board on the dining room table. We played a couple of hours that first day. We bought and developed property, went to jail and collected $200 when we passed go.
I thought we must be missing something, because neither of us were going broke, so sometime on Day 2, we checked the rules, and it wasn’t my imagination.
When you play it the right way, the winner is simply “the last player remaining in the game,” whenever that might be.
Our game lasted a week and ended in a tie, when Thing 1 went back to school and I went to work. I had a little more money than my daughter did, but neither of us had anything close to a Monopoly, which was OK.
Sometimes, the point isn’t to win. Sometimes, the point is just to play.