I must admit, I sometimes find the enduring popularity of Monopoly a little….surprising. Don’t get me wrong, I have a longstanding affection for Monopoly myself. My brother and I used to play it all the time. Because I was older and apparently had a thing for trains, I would refuse to play unless he agreed up front to let me buy all the railroads. In exchange for this, I let him have Boardwalk and Park Place, so I was a controlling but not especially savvy Monopoly player. Ahh….memories!
But the thing is, my kids, even growing up in this age of newfangled video games and internet that goes with you everywhere, ALSO love Monopoly. We have both Doctor Who and standard Monopoly, and both of them see more time out of the box than their younger, flashier new generation board game cousins.
So we were all pretty excited to try out the Hasbro Game Channel’s new Monopoly Plus game on our XBox.
Plus I love game nights. I remember looking forward to the day my older kids would finally be old enough to play board games with me. Even Candyland was an exciting milestone, because it brought us one step closer to real games. So I’ll jump on pretty much any excuse to have a game night.
You can download Monopoly Plus right onto your XBox or Playstation from the Hasbro Game Channel, and then you have a choice of using the traditional 2D board or the animated 3D one (and watch your little Scottie trot across the board. I love Scotties. Pro Monopoly tip: always pick the Scottie game piece). Up to six people can play, either with separate controllers or just passing one around.
We decided to play on the big projector screen in the basement (which is not HD, so the graphics don’t look as impressive as they might. I kind of wish we’d gone with the HD projector. Not just because of Monopoly):
(don’t pay attention to those shelves. You’re not supposed to see them yet).
I thought that game night would be EVEN MORE fun if we had themed snacks, because what ISN’T more fun with themed snacks, right? So I thought that surely a Monopoly-themed set of cookie cutters would be a thing that already existed. But it appears that I was wrong. Missed opportunity, cookie cutter makers of the world! So I put together my very own set of Monopoly cookie cutters by buying top hat and mustache (affiliate links) cookie cutters off of Amazon…..you know, like Uncle Pennybags (aka Mr. Monopoly) has! I thought this was very clever of me, and everything started off great. I made some sugar cookie dough and rolled it out:
I think where things went wrong is when I put it in the oven:
This was a gluten free recipe that I hadn’t tried before, and I used my own flour blend, and, well….gluten free recipes are picky. But they tasted good. Later Dave said, “the mustaches turned out pretty well, didn’t they?” No, no they didn’t. I’ll just wait here while you pin this pretty picture I took of them:
ANYWAY, I still maintain that properly executed Monopoly sugar cookies would have been awesome. I’ll try again sometime.
But back to the game. Aside from the adorable trotting Scottie, here are three reasons you want to play Monopoly Plus on your XBox sometimes instead of always playing the traditional board game version:
1. I’m not sure if you were aware of this, but Monopoly has a bit of a reputation for taking a LONG time to play. My kids rarely finish a game in one sitting, so our game table in the basement often looks like this for days on end:
With the Hasbro Game Channel version, you can stop and save your game whenever you want and the whole board just disappears into your XBox until you come back to it. There is no danger whatsoever of the cat scattering the properties and money all over the floor.
2. You can get some exercise while you play, because, instead of just sitting at a table, you’re actually jumping up and down with excitement:
3. It invites you to educate yourself on the history of Monopoly and the finer points of game strategy. You have the option of playing strictly by the rules or using “house rules” (collecting money when you land on Free Parking, et. al.). The little used rule about how you can auction properties if you land on them and don’t want to buy them blew my kids’ minds. And led us to do some research and learn that there’s a heated debate about the merits of this rule (here’s why it’s good. Here’s why it’s terrible).
We’re looking forward to more Monopoly in our game night future and to trying out some of the other Hasbro Game Channel offerings.
I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.