System: PC(Windows 95/98 OS)
Publisher: Hasbro Interactive
Developer: Artech Studios
Capabilities: Online Play via Modem, Network, MSN Gaming Zone
The popular property trading game in North America comes home to your PC, courtesy of Hasbro. This time its in full 3-D, all the board properties and specialty squares are still here. Will it deliver just as much excitement than playing it at home, lets get onto the review and find out.
The board has the exact same look as the original, but its in 3-D and it rotates and all when the tokens move, and all the tokens are animated too. Yes, all the classic pieces are here like the Ship, Car, Dog, etc., plus the new money bag which was introduced a few years back. The city boards look cool which have pictures of the properties on the game board which Ill explain later on. I really like that feature too where you can upload your own pictures or even ones off the Internet to make your own board. The opening FMV is nice and the game even throws in some extras like animated Community Chest and Chance cards. The game menus are nicely laid out and really easy for Monopoly veterans to navigate through.
The game manages to display all the game information at the bottom of the monitor. All the properties are displayed at the bottom of the screen and the ones highlighted are the ones you own and options available to you at the moment are displayed as simple push buttons telling you if you can roll the dice, build houses, mortgage/unmortgage, etc. The trade screen is very nicely laid out. I was wondering how theyre gonna work this all in without getting pretty complex, but they did pretty good to me.
You got Mr. Monopoly(That guy in the black suit and hat with the mustache whos basically the mascot for the game) actually doing commentary for the game, and he doesnt sound all that bad. He fits in lots of voice samples and doesnt even get repetitive all that much(like if you roll a 7, instead of saying he rolled a 7' he says looks like 7 to me and lucky 7'). The game has a nice opening tune(I still cant get the opening lyrics out of my head: Come all and play Monopoly) and it is used for the background music. The only thing that isnt the greatest about the sound is the way the tokens talk, and they get really repetitive pretty fast, but youll get use to it.
There really isnt any controls for the game, only clicking the mouse button to do just about everything. For the few of you who dont know what Monopoly is, its one of the most popular Board games ever that came out during the Great Depression of the US during the 1930's. You buy and trade properties by moving a token of yours around a rectangular board via rolling the dice, and if you own a whole certain set of properties you can place houses and hotels on them and rack up the rent whenever your opponent lands there token on there.
You can play the game using the classic board and classic rules, or you can customize the rules to fit your own needs like setting the amount of money to pay to get out of jail, set income tax amounts, set the amount you get for passing go, and so on. But the two most interesting rules you can put on is the Free Parking rule where at the start of every game Free Parking has $500 in it, and all taxes you pay by the Chance and Community Chest cards or by landing on the Income/Luxury Tax squares go to Free Parking too, and whoever lands on it gets all of it. The other option is the Futures/Immunities options where you can grant other players a discount or free pass if they happen to land on a property of yours. If you get tired of playing on the same old board, there are boards based on other popular US cities where the properties are famous landmarks in those cities, also a really neat feature is where you can create your own board by naming the properties and adding pictures of them. And the same rule goes in effect for the board as with all other different variations of Monopoly boards, and that is the 4 corner squared(Go, Free Parking, Go to Jail, Jail) cannot be changed.
The game is already fun enough to play on its own original version, by customizing your own rules that makes the game even more fun(as it is in real life, me and my friends always do the Free Parking Jackpot thing), and to even add more replay the create-a-board is one of the coolest customization modes I ever saw! And if that wasnt enough the game can be multi player either one computer or multiple ones over modems, network, or online play. You can go against the computer(and set it on 3 different difficulties) or humans, alternating turns. And since Monopoly never gets old, youll be probably playing this game forever.
+: Great 3-D graphics and animations, That Mr. Monopoly guy easily navigates you through the game, lots of extras
-: The token voices are really annoying and repetitive(my favorite piece is the ship, and I cant stand its voice in this game which sounds like some really bloated lady!)
The Final Ratings Rundown
Game play: 9.8
Replay Value: 10(Monopoly never gets old!)
Rounded to fit GameFAQs score: 10
The game plays and feels just like the original. All the added extras makes the game even more fun to play, plus now that you can minus the lazy factor of setting up the board and arguing over whos gonna be the banker and worrying if your friend is stealing money behind your back gives you even more reasons to buy this game, and also add to the fact that this game can be found for around $20 or less is another reason. I can promise, no, I guarantee(if youre a Monopoly fan any ways), that this will be the most addicting PC game youve ever played, no Tetris ripoff, not even The Sims, or the Diablo and Starcraft games are more addicting than this. So stop reading this and go buy the game now and make sure its the Hasbro version!