Progressive Monopoly

Chapter 1.  Why mess with Monopoly?

For over a year now, my kids and I have played the classic board game Monopoly on the Friday nights my wife is out of town for her job. Although Mark just turned thirteen and Ann is only eleven, they’ve both learned the basics of capitalism from the buying, selling, paying rent, and collecting rent of Monopoly properties. That was my original purpose in choosing Monopoly as one of our family rituals.

Being somewhat of a news junkie, though, I couldn’t help noticing that contemporary American capitalism (if that’s still what we have) is perhaps more influenced by the government than by the individual capitalists, and the effects of government weren’t included in the Monopoly experience.  Consequently, I drafted a set of Progressive Monopoly rules to better align the game with our modern reality.

What follows are my recollections of our process over the past few months – from creating the new rules through several iterations of the new game to lessons learned (presented here for the benefit of others). . . .