B1 Intermediate US 21 Folder Collection
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OK, so when do you play Monopoly?
I have not played Monopoly since I was, like, ten.
So…
Now I play it when I'm at my parents' house, if there's a big family gathering.
I don't ever play Monopoly.
Basically, you played Monopoly when you were a kid or when you were stuck inside.
So, I talked to somebody who played Monopoly in a ballroom in the Venetian hotel in Macau.
I'm Brian Valentine.
I was the United States representative to the Monopoly World Championships in 2015,
where I finished third amongst the 28 competitors.
He taught me all the right ways to play Monopoly — and even make the game a little shorter.
All the rules, odds, and strategies that can actually help you win.
This is a Monopoly board from...
..Target...but I took it with me to Macau and asked all the players to sign it for me.
Just as a keepsake.
I'm almost getting into sports cliches talking about Monopoly, but tt was very humbling to
have made it that far against players who are the best in their country and who are
fantastic people.
And this Monopoly genius, he knows heatmaps and housing arbitrage and strategy — but
he just wants you to follow the rules.
OK, what happens on free parking?
Do you, like, collect money from people?
There's no money under free parking, I guess that's the biggest.
You don't put money under free parking, people see as a chance to equalize the game
that's stacked against them.
If you keep putting money in the game, it stops the progress.
People don't play the game by the rules.
If they did, it wouldn't take quite so long.
Do you auction stuff off?
No.
I remember reading it on the back of the card, but I don't remember — I remember that
always feeling a little over my head in terms of play.
If you land on it and don't want it, it's got to go up for auction on the spot.
Somebody can buy it.
You can start the bidding at a dollar.
I've seen it happen, and I've seen someone take Boardwalk for 20 bucks.
Once you have the rules in order, you've gotta go with the strategy.
What's the best spot in Monopoly?
Oh, I'm sure it's like Boardwalk.
It's funny because that's the glamour, that's the trademark of Monopoly, it's
Boardwalk - you gotta get it.
The object of the game is to take everyone's money and be the only person left in the game.
While Boardwalk certainly offers the prospect of that — $2000 when you get a hotel on
it — think about what it costs to get there.
You've got to buy each of the two properties.
Then it's 200 dollars, per house per property, until you get to that level.
So that's another thousand dollars on each one to then get $2000 back.
And there are only two of them, right?
Most of the other Monopolies have three spaces that you can hit and then draw rent.
If you are building up Boardwalk and Park Place before anybody else has built Monopolies
up against you, hell yeah, go for it.
But if you're in a situation where other folks have Monopolies on that hot side of
the board, and you're waiting to throw the haymaker, if you will, on Boardwalk and Park
Place, that's a loser more than it's a winner.
You can go on any website and learn the basic parlor trick that the oranges are the best
Monopoly to have.
Are you gonna now show a chart of the Monopoly board with a heat map?
I'm sad to say that I will.
I knew that existed.
The reason that that is so is because jail is one of the most often landed on spaces
in the game.
The fact that the common role is 7, then 7 from jail — while not an actual property,
it's Community Chest — 6 and 8, the next most likely numbers, are St. James and Tennessee
Avenue.
So you know that the oranges are likely to get hit on.
And also, by extension, the section between jail and go to jail that side's the side
you want to be building on.
It's feast or famine on the other side of the board.
So there's a couple more strategies that are on the practical, not so mathy end.
If you get to jail early, go ahead pay up, get out of there.
You can also use your houses as weapons to control the game.
You have 32 houses in the game.
You've got to build houses before you can build hotels.
The houses have to be physically present to be bought, which is why, in a lot of circles
you'll hear people say about creating a housing shortage.
You want to get to the four house level so you can pull the trigger and get hotels if
you need to, or you can sit on the four houses and keep other people from having them.
OK, so final question.
So when I say what is the right way to play Monopoly, how do you respond?
The right way to play Monopoly is just...don't play it.
Don't steal from the bank.
And that goes out to my cousins when we played when we were ten.
I would say, is it just like, to win?
How to win?
With honor.
It's almost, sometimes, you feel like you have this Renaissance era sense of honor and
dignity.
Not that we're going around slapping each other with gloves having duels or anything
like that.
But...that's the thing that keeps coming to me is honor.
Playing Monopoly allows you to get to know people in a way that formal introductions
or being coworkers, or whatever, doesn't quite show.
Because in an hour and half, two hour game, you're gonna see how people handle adversity,
you're gonna see how people handle success, you're gonna see, bundled in this short
format, that allows you to see who a person is.
Ahhh...shhh….it's Monopoly, we're talking about Monopoly.
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The right way to play Monopoly

21 Folder Collection
Fibby published on April 28, 2020
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