80 years ago, Parker Brothers launched the game Monopoly

80 years ago, Parker Brothers launched the game Monopoly

TASS-DOSSIER /Alexander Panov/. November 5, 2015 marks 80 years since the release of the Parker Brothers game “Monopoly”, which is the most popular Board game in the world.

Game predecessor

The precursor to Monopoly was a game of “Landowner”, developed by the American Elizabeth Maggie to illustrate theories well-known liberal economist Henry George.

“Landowner” was patented in 1904 and has spread in many US States, as well as under a changed name in the UK.

The Creation Of A “Monopoly”

“Monopoly” has been created by us engineer Charles Darrow in 1933.

Her genre – economic strategy. To participate in the game can range from two to eight people, each of which seeks to achieve the bankruptcy of other players, utilizing the initial capital.

In 1934, Darrow offered to buy the rights to Monopoly to Parker Brothers, specializing in the production of Board games, but was refused: the company’s managers found in the project 52 design errors.

Subsequently, Darrow was able to sell in a year about 5 thousand copies of the game.

Realizing his mistake, 6 February 1935, Parker Brothers signed a contract with Darrow.

In the following year Monopoly became the best-selling game in the U.S. (for the year it was purchased about 35 thousand copies).

In 1991, Parker Brothers was acquired by American company Hasbro, which since then owns the rights to sell Monopoly.

To date, the official number of sold copies of the game exceeds 250 million.

Version of the game

In the classic “Monopoly” all objects on the field are taken from the American city of Atlantic city.

Further more national options, including exotic Rhodesian, Paraguay, Gibraltar, etc. In countries such as USA, Germany, France, Australia, were released several versions of “Monopoly”, which takes place in different cities.

In addition, there are a number of special versions for fans of “Batman”, “Star wars”, etc.

A total of “Monopoly” was translated into 47 languages and published in 114 countries.

In the USSR a local variant of the game called “Manager” was first released in 1988.

Spread and other games similar to “Monopoly” built on the principle of economic strategy – “Broker”, “Business 2000” and etc.

In 2010 was released a version of “Monopoly of Russia” on the field showing Russian cities.


In 1974 Professor at the University of San Francisco Ralph Anspach invented an alternative version of the game – the “Anti-monopoly”, which, in contrast to the original, demonstrates the negative effects of monopolies on the economy.

After stretching more than a decade of litigation over the use of trademarks for Anspacher it was recognized the right to issue “Anti-monopoly” under license from Parker Brothers (since 1991 under the license of Hasbro).

Championships in the game Monopoly

From 1973 to the game of “Monopoly” are irregular world Championships.

In September 2015, at the 14th championship, held in Macau, was won by the Italian Nicolo Falcone.

A few facts about Monopoly

© AP Photo/Steven Senne

  • At different times the cost of the game ranged from $2 (worth of the first version of “Monopoly”) to $2 million (the cost of the game, designed by Sidney Mobella of pure gold).
  • “Monopoly” was one of the first games to have waived linear scheme “start-finish”, and made emphasis on deliberate strategy.
  • Before Monopoly classic approved the first set of chips, the players themselves chose their figures – out of everyday items. It is believed that one of the first in this capacity, the use of charms is a small jewelry, worn on the bracelet. According to one version, the idea of game inventor Charles Darrow suggested his niece.
  • Annually printed about 30 billion “monopolistically dollars.” This is 30 times greater than the amount of real money that is annually printed in the United States.
  • The longest game of Monopoly lasted 1680 hours or 70 days. For comparison, the average duration of the Olympics – 16 days.
  • The total amount won in the classic version of “Monopoly” is $20580. The same amount is given to winners of world Championships on the game.
  • In 1983 the Italian Emilio Mallone proved that in Monopoly you can play alone, if you replace the five players.
  • Because of “capitalist principles” underlying game, “Monopoly” has long been banned in the USSR and China, and is still illegal in Cuba and in North Korea.
  • According to one version, the prototype of the character Mr. Monopoly, which is a symbol of the game, was an entrepreneur and financier John Pierpont Morgan, one of the founders of the oldest financial conglomerate JPMorgan Chase.
  • According to one legend related to the history of the game, during the Second world war the British secret services used a “Monopoly” in order to convey the British prisoners of war in Nazi camps miniature compasses, money and maps with routes of escape.