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Dublin: 11°C Tuesday 19 January 2021
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Is this the most capitalist board game ever?

Monopoly is no longer about buying properties – its latest version is all about the global brands.

IF YOU THOUGHT that Monopoly was all about buying and trading properties, you need to get with the times – because now it’s all about the brands, man.

The new Monopoly Empire game is the first of its kind, featuring 22 of the world’s top brands rather than properties.

You can expect to see the likes of Coca-Cola, Xbox, McDonald’s and Samsung, which makes the game feel miles away from its origins in the USA of 1903.

The players collect, buy, and trade top brands and companies in a quest to “own it all” and win the game. The focus of the new game certainly proves that big-name brands are where it’s at when it comes to money and power today.

Youth market

Eric Nyman, senior vice president and global brand leader for Hasbro Gaming, said that the new game “continues Hasbro’s tradition of providing exciting new ways for families to play games together”.

The game allows kids to create their ultimate dream empire and imagine what it would be like to own the brands that mean the most to them, whether that’s Xbox or Spotify.

Interestingly, many of the featured brands are aimed at the youth market – like Beats by Dr Dre, Coca-Cola, McDonald’s, eBay and XGames. Hasbro says it chose “brands that would excite and engage kids around the world”, and that the game “brings to life the fantasy of being a big time mogul and the idea of owning the brands that are aspirational for young fans worldwide”.

When TheJournal.ie asked if the brands pay to be included, a spokesperson said that Hasbro “do not comment on the terms of their agreements with their brand licensors”.

Rather than the traditional shoe or wheelbarrow, players will travel around the game board with tokens that represent six of the brands featured in the game: a 2014 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray, a Ducati motorcycle, a Coca-Cola glass bottle, an Xbox controller, a Paramount Pictures movie clapboard and McDonald’s french fries.

Players will showcase the brands they own with billboards on a tower, and the first player to fill their tower with their brand billboards wins the game.

Things that could get in the way of success include a hostile takeover or a stock market crash. In keeping with our every-shortening attention spans, the game can be completed by most players in less than 30 minutes.

Monopoly has been played by more than one billion people in 111 countries around the world. We have a feeling that after playing Monopoly Empire, players will be struck with a sudden urge to nosh on some fries, drink some cola, pop on their headphones, and browse eBay.

Read: 7 cats who are delighted with the new Monopoly (and 3 irons that are not)>

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