Saturday, 19 December 2015

Monopoly New House Rule

Just watched an interesting article about how Monopolies original concept was to teach you to hate the rise of the real-estate barons, I guess that's why everyone gets that negative feeling when playing..

Heres the link:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xeLPNVmzerg

But an Idea popped up from watching, specifically from the one point,

Choose your Direction, after you roll.

   In roll and move board games, players are at the mercy of the dice. Many games that use this mechanic (which many board games designers call the worst ever mechanic) don't give you any choice, you roll, you see what it results in, you follow the rules of that square, pass the dice.
   The Idea of player agency, player choice, which makes game more interesting, is in monopoly, which is probably why it did so well, vs snakes & ladders and other games of its time. You roll the dice, but then you have a choice, buy the property at the listed price or be the auctioneer on the property (Original rules had no listed price, you just went to auction automatically). Also, if the up coming properties were already taken, you engaged the players in conversation before rolling the dice, get them distracted about some other topic, roll casually, count out your position in your head and if you landed on someone elses property, pass the dice and encourage them to roll "quick game is a good game" as you moved your piece.. if they rolled quick enough, you escaped the rent.
   Paying attention, in a time when board games were more about an excuse to have conversation and get together, than to actually play, was more critical.

But one rule that was lost to time, was the agency of choice. When you rolled. you could choose which direction you wanted to move, except backwards past go (see there was a reason there was an arrow) you could only pass go in one direction to get paid.

Thinking about it, how many lost opportunities are there for games where this kind of mechanic could be employed. What you gain in not going forward to a bad square and going backward to a safer square, you give up in faster income, also teaching players that sometimes going backwards in life can be the better choice.

What other dice choice mechanics could we be using? 

Roll two dice, and move either the value of one dice or the other.. choice in your possible results.
How about moving one die forward and the other backward, takes longer to move around the board, but give you choice.
Two dice, move either the result or either of the individual dice, or reverse for the same. Now you have six possible choices, throw in the +/- variant and you have eight possible locations to choose from..

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