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Monopoly: The World’s Most Fascinating Business Board Game

By Shiwani PandeyOctober 30, 2022
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The History of the Evolution of Monopoly

Monopoly is one of the most popular board games we love to play with our family and friends. It is a great time-pass activity that gives us the thrill of business indoors. There is a fascinating story about the evolution of the monopoly game we should know.

This game’s history is quite strange and gripping. If we play it, it teaches us how to make good use of money and win a game. It also develops good mathematical skills among the young players and helps us to connect with players of all ages.

What is Monopoly?

It is a real-estate board game that can be played by 8 players. Here, players gather money by rolling dice and proceeding on the blocks made on the board. Wherever the players land, they have to make money-related decisions. The prime aim of all the players is to earn as much Monopoly money as possible and force others to become bankrupt. The one who is left with money wins the game.

Monopoly Board Game

Monopoly Board Game

The History of the Game

1. 1903: The Landlord’s Game

Elizabeth Magie Phillips is considered to be the pioneer of this game. She created it back in 1903 and named it the Landlord’s Game. Her idea was at another level. She wanted to make the common people aware of the demerits and drawbacks of a monopolistic economy. It was she who invented Monopoly.

He developed two versions of this game. In the first version, when a player makes money, the other players will also be benefitted. In the second version, if a player makes money, the others will lose money. It is clear from this monopoly history that these models had hidden educational features. She patented the game in 1904.

2. 1906 – 1936: The Advent of Monopoly

Several variations appeared between 1905 and 1936. Charles Darrow learned about this fascinating game in 1932. He was intrigued by this remarkable idea and made some changes to make it more interesting. He copyrighted his version but sold it to the Parker Brothers in 1935. It was then marketed with the name Monopoly in the US market. One of the interesting features of this version is that it was based on the famous streets of Atlantic City in New Jersey.

3. 1936 – 1970: The International Versions of Monopoly

Parker Brothers made a fortune out of it. In 1960, they decided to market and sell this board game outside the US markets. Eventually, it reached the United Kingdom. The British enthusiasts game with their version of the Monopoly game board.  Even the Dutch created a unique version. The world witnessed the adaptability of this game. Eventually, this Charles Darrow board game became ragingly popular across the world.

4. 1970 – 1980: Charles Darrow’s Deception

Ralph Anspach, a professor of Economics at San Francisco State University, developed the anti-version of this game. He was sued by the Parker Brothers due to copyright issues. The legal battle ended with the publishing of this version of the board game under the banner of the Parker Brothers.

Ralph went on to expose Charles Darrow. He established the fact that Elizabeth Magie Phillips is the sole proprietor of the idea of this game and she needs to be credited for her marvellous invention. Hence, the unknown story of the Monopoly game and its history was brought to the limelight.

5. 1980 Onwards: The Modern Times

Hasbro, the parent company of Parker Brothers, took over the company and Monopoly became its intellectual property in 1991. Since the takeover, every version of Monopoly is recognised and identified by this company.

Hasbro offered the licence of this game to Funskool to make the Indian versions and market them here. In 2008, Funskool was the sole marketer of this game in India.

Fun Facts About Monopoly

The features of Monopoly might have changed in due course of time but the prime idea remains the same. You will be surprised to know that this board game has been published in more than 107 countries and in 37 different languages.

There is a convention where players across the world compete to become the champion in this game. Brian Valentine Monopoly is a world champion in 2015. He has been playing this game since he was 5 years old. He won this title when he was 30 years of age and made history.

How to Play Monopoly?

All the players will get a turn to roll the dice. The one who strikes the highest will start the real game. Each player will play the role of a banker. The number of the dice will decide how many blocks to proceed with. The tokens of the player can be on the same block on the board.

The blocks represent houses, industries, facilities, businesses, etc. The players make purchases according to the cash they have. The highest owner of this board game wins. Players are eliminated when they go bankrupt. There are penalties in this game. Players have to pay rent when they land on the properties of other players. You might have to go to jail too! Imagine how fascinating it can be! These are the simplest Monopoly rules to follow while playing this game.

The Board Game of Joy and Education

Now that we know how the monopoly was made, we clearly understand its intention. It teaches us to calculate using simple mathematical operations and make decisions. Children exposed to this game at a young age become aware of the importance of money and its methodical investment.

This game teaches us how to manage our resources and make more. It also teaches how to make fruitful decisions. These are a few of the reasons why Monopoly is one of the most popular board games in the world.