Geek Culture

Geek Review: Monopoly Singapore (Then And Now)

Google “Monopoly Singapore” and chances are that the results will all revolve around McDonald’s and its recently concluded Monopoly promotional tie-in with the classic board game in Singapore.

If you dug a little deeper, you might come across a version of the game that contained Singapore locations around the Monopoly map, but little else. The Chance and Community Chess cards remained the same as the original game, as did the railroads.

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Hasbro actually released a second version of this game in 2016 though, and the new Monopoly Singapore is anything but a localised version in name only. Not only have the street names been updated, the contents of the cards have also been changed to reflect a more Singaporean way of life, and instead of railroads, you now have four operational MRT stations.

The best part? You can trade these MRT stations all you want, because the trains running through them will never break down. (Though it is a feature in the Chance cards)

To keep track of the changes within the game, I went and dug out two previous versions of the classic game.

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The first one is an old set from when I was young. How young? Well, this version is neither produced by Hasbro, Parker Brothers or Waddington’s. It’s actually from Holdson. The back of the Chance and Community Chess cards are plain, with no markings, and the tokens are silver in colour.

The next version I have is a wooden box re-release of the Monopoly game most players know and love, and this one comes with nice golden tokens. The back of the cards are still unmarked though, and come in two shades of colour.

The Singapore Monopoly version comes with markings to distinguish the cards, but what matters to players is what’s being written on the cards. Come across an MRT breakdown? Pay up M500 for every MRT station you possess. If you are headed to JB or proceeding to camp at Coney Island, collect M2,000 if you pass Go.

Since the Singapore is giving new parents plenty of incentives to have a baby, the Singapore version of the game is following that with a M2,000 amount if you pick the Community Chest card linked to having a child.

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In fact, the game is so prescient, it has future proofed itself by listing Bidadari as a popular housing development location here. From what I know, the groundbreaking only just gave way to heavy vehicles, which means the flat won’t see any live people until another 4 to 5 years.

The only thing that remains identical across all three versions of the games I have, are the eight player tokens. But in case you are wondering, yes, Hasbro is looking at changing the eight tokens, with recent a public vote, to determine the identity of the new fateful eight. Voting has closed, and the results will be out in March 19, on World Monopoly Day.

So if you’re the kiasu kind, you better pick up this S$46.90 set, before a new version hits the shelves.

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