The Fast-Dealing Property-Destroying Game
Honkai: Star Rail is an absolute behemoth of a free-to-play game right now, surpassing 20 million downloads in a single day. I’ve been trying to put some time into it since it launched, but I don’t think I’ve even reached the titular Star Rail yet as another mobile game has hogged all of my attention over the past week or so. Monopoly Go! is a new, free-to-play competitive board game from Hasbro and Scopely, the latter of which is best known for its work on The Walking Dead: Road to Survival and Star Trek Fleet Command.
Monopoly Go! is a casual take on the classic board where you roll two die to move your piece around the iconic board, collecting cash or paying taxes along the way. Everything you know from Monopoly is here, but the rules have changed enough that Monopoly Go! is an even more ruthless version of the property-buying game.
That’s saying something because Monopoly has always been a take-no-prisoners experience. Anyone who had the misfortune of landing on a hotel-adorned Park Avenue space owned by your older brother can attest to just how mean-spirited this game can be. That is by design and why we mostly stuck to playing Sorry! when I was a kid. In Monopoly Go!, your goal isn’t just to collect money from your friends and strangers. You’ll still do that because what is Monopoly if you’re not learning to hate landlords? But you’re also actively trying to destroy their properties while robbing them blind.
When you boot up the app, it’ll encourage you to sign up your friends as all F2P games are wont to do these days. Friends and strangers alike will pop up on your board in various spaces. If you manage to land your piece on one of those spaces, they’ll pay you rent. The goal of the game is to earn enough money to complete landmarks across various maps (such as a torii on the Tokyo map). Build all five landmarks and max out their upgrades, and you’ll move to the next map. It’s simple enough, but you can really throw a wrench into your friends’ plans by landing on a railroad space.
Railroads in Monopoly Go! will activate one of two activities: Shut Down or Bank Heist. If you get Shut Down, you’ll get a chance to partially demolish a landmark one of your acquaintances has built. They can block it, but only a certain number of times. Landing on a Bank Heist will open up a match-3 mini-game that’ll let you rob your friends and family of all their money if you’re lucky. Sadly, for the people who’ve decided to add me as a friend in their game, I’ve been very lucky in that regard over the past week.
Going bankrupt carries no real penalty as it’s impossible for you to go into debt, but it can provide a major setback for your progress, such as when I managed to steal about $17,000,000 from another player during a Mega Heist. That player has since given up on the game, as have quite a few of the people who were in my circle for the first five days or so.
Unfortunately, it seems that I will be joining them soon enough. There are several deal-breakers here that will have me deleting the app, probably by the time this article goes live. It’s really aggressive with its in-game ads, I have the absolute worst luck of landing on the Go to Jail space, and it’s the type of free-to-play game where it’s almost necessary to keep opening up the app in case there is a 30-minute limited time event that could give you a massive advantage. I’m keen on the F2P market, but not so much when a game keeps my notifications ringing throughout the day.
If I were in the market for a new mobile F2P game to kick around for the next few weeks, Monopoly Go! wouldn’t be a bad choice as it can be amusing from time to time. But with Honkai: Star Rail here, and my resurgent interest in Marvel Snap, I think I’ve given it just about as much time as I can.
Monopoly GO is available now on iOS and Android platforms.