Monopoly has been around pretty much forever, but all of the various iterations of the board game have remained very similar. Monopoly Millionaires, on the other hand, changes things up quite a bit. And thankfully those changes are almost all for the better. It still feels like Monopoly, but Millionaires is a very different experience, and one that's almost perfectly suited to Facebook.
The biggest change is that you are essentially playing solo. Instead of taking turns with other players rolling the dice and moving around the board, you'll be moving around all by your lonesome. It sounds kind of odd, but it works well. You're given a limited number of rolls during each play session, which regenerates over time, and as you move around the board you'll land on familiar places. There's Chance and Community Chest cards that can either give you a cash bonus or take away some of your hard earned Monopoly money, there are the utilities that require a payout if you land on them, and of course there's the Go To Jail space. Many of the locations act the same way they do in the board game. That is, except for the streets.
Instead of having to pay rent when you land on a street, you're greeted with a sort of mini-game that has you choosing cards. As with the board game, the streets are divided up into colored sections. And when you land on one you'll get a chance to choose a card that represents one of the streets from whichever particular color you landed on. It gives the game a collectible card feel as you try to find complete sets of cards.
When you're playing the game, rolling the dice and moving around the board, you'll actually be doing so on your friends' board. That's because everyone in the game gets their own board for friends to play on. And everything you do while playing other people's boards, whether it's earning money or collecting street cards, is all for the betterment of your own board.
Collecting the cards allows you to improve the homes that you buy for streets. These homes pay out rent, which, in a nice change of pace, isn't doled out a regular intervals but instead grows over time. And as you upgrade them the amount of rent you earn for that particular house grows. The catch, is that you'll need to return regularly to pay your electricity bill: once the lights go out the rent money gets put on hold.
You can use money to decorate your board and set-up traps to mess with your friends, or you can even buy new playing pieces that each have different abilities. Playing with the dog, for instance, ensures you'll always get a street card when you select a card, while the red sports car piece increases your chances of rolling doubles, which both gives you an extra turn and gets you out of jail, if you should be so unlucky.
When you think about it, Monopoly Millionaires probably shouldn't work. It turns a classic board game into what is essentially a single player experience. But the fun city building mechanics and board game play make it not only work, but work very well. It's an almost completely different experience from Monopoly, but somehow it still feels the same.
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