There is now a Monopoly for Millennials board game and it’s exactly the kind of dystopian hellscape that most millennials fear.
When Monopoly was first invented by Elizabeth Magie way back in 1903, it was intended to teach children the evils of capitalism and convince them to play her other game which was more about fair taxation and working together. That other game failed spectacularly when everyone had way more fun being evil capitalists and forcing their friends into bankruptcy.
However, things seem to have come full-circle a century later. Hasbro, current owners of the Monopoly copyrights, have released a version of the game intended for millennials, a generation that requires no convincing on how truly awful capitalism can be.
Before you think this is just another Monopoly game where the players spend money on avocado toast and electric cars, think again. In a move that’s either incredibly perceptive or incredibly patronizing, Hasbro has flipped the usual Monopoly formula on its head. Instead of players trying to buy property and seize total control of the real estate market, players try to accumulate more experiences than everyone else and post them to their social media channels.
We wish this was a joke, but it’s not.
"Forget real estate,” the box says pointedly. “You can't afford it anyway."
“Travel around the gameboard discovering and visiting cool places to eat, shop, and relax,” Hasbro writes in their marketing material. “Interact with other players via Chance and Community Chest cards, (which are super relatable). And players don't pay rent -- they visit one another, earning more Experience points. This board game is a great way to bring a fun and relaxed vibe to a party or casual get-together."
So what are those experiences that players are desperately vying for? You could go to a 3-day music festival, sleep on a friend's couch, eat at a vegan bistro, or discover your inner self at a yoga studio.
For some reason, you collect money from the player who lands on your previously discovered destination. You don’t “own” the destination, but you somehow manage to copyright the directions to get there, which is a horrific addition to current intellectual property laws. And instead of the player with the most money winning, it’s the player with the most experience points.
You can pick this version of Monopoly up at participating US Walmart stores or Amazon. The rest of the world will have to see how they survive without this gem of a board game poking fun at late-stage capitalism.