Monopoly Variants

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Since the release of the Monopoly board game in the format we all know and love, we’ve seen the game go through various localisations. You can now purchase a version of Monopoly based on the streets of London, Paris, Berlin or even Amsterdam.

The most infamous variant of the Monopoly board game has to be Anti-Monopoly, which was release in the 1970′s. This game was not put together by the then owners of the game, The Parker Brothers, but instead was constructed by an Economics professor, Ralph Anspach. Whilst the wily professor was able to produce testimony from many of the people who had a hand in the development of the game, the court ruled that the Anti-Monopoly game was a breach of the Parker Brother’s trademark and ordered all copies of the game to be destroyed. Anspach appealed against this ruling and then, after much legal wrangling, the courts ruled the game could be published in 1983. This paved the way for a host of Monopoly variants.

Following the Anspach ruling, there’s been five Monopoly card games released based on the famous property-trading board game. Many different companies have produced variants of the game such as Star Wars Monopoly or World Cup Monopoly and we’ve even seen a corporate version of the game produced by UPS. During this time there’s also been a boom in home computer games and as you’d expect, these haven’t been immune from Monopoly games, with the first Monopoly computer game arriving on the Commodore 64 in the late eighties, with exclusive modern variants such as the popular Monopoly Tycoon appearing only on the PC platform.

The fact there are so many versions of this Monopoly, spread over so many different formats is a testament to the success of this once humble board game. Just like Chess or Draughts, Monopoly has transcended ownership and become such a classic game that it’s now owned by everyone.