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Property Improvements | Wheeling and Dealing | Debt and Bankruptcy | Variations | History | Conclusions

How to Win at Monopoly

Monopoly: Conclusions

What has undoubtedly made Monopoly so popular over the years is its appeal to the competitive nature in every individual. It rewards striving, quick-thinking, gregarious individuals who know how to talk to others. This makes it a very social game. Even those who do not win have a fun time. Unlike chess, which is more of a mental sport, or cards, which can be a bit too abstract, the game's fundamentals reflect life and reality.

When Parker Brothers first considered buying "Monopoly" from its inventor, Charles Darrow, it rejected the idea because its engineers assumed the complexity of buying and mortgaging property was too much for the average game player. This proved incorrect because so many people do own property and have had to deal with rents and mortgages. The game is a microcosm of real life, and real business. Anyone who is a good Monopoly player has all of the attributes they need to succeed in the business world, and this is a reassuring fact. Anyone can make it big with a bit of ingenuity, brains and just a bit of luck.

Another appealing aspect of the game is that a whole financial life can be lived in two hours of play time. And if you muff it the first time, there is always tomorrow to try again. This is actually important to remember. We have mentioned in previous pages that the reputation you gain with other players can affect the outcome of a game, and your reputation carries over with the same players from game to game. This means that gloating over a superb deal, when it wins you the game is not a good idea. Treat everyone with respect, be a good winner, and you are likely to be a winner far more often. Even players who are losing the game have opportunities to change its outcome.

By the same token, you can't always be the winner. There is still a fair element of luck in the game. Once in a while deals will not pan out the way you intended. You will run onto "street repairs" just when the tide is swinging your way, then get wiped out three turns later when you somehow hit someone's Railroad monopoly three turns in a row rolling a succession of tens on the dice (unlikely, but possible). At these times take your medicine, bow out gracefully and stay involved with the other players still in the game. Truly, the game is more about comradery than it is about driving other people into bankruptcy.

Ultimately, winning at Monopoly really is not all that difficult. It only requires remembering a few dictums. "Buy, buy, buy", "trade, trade, trade", and "build, build, build" pretty much sums it all up. In Monopoly, as in life, it is the reticent player that is going to be sitting on the sidelines watching some other player placing a hotel on Boardwalk. Be bold, be confident and have fun.

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