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Subject: How a kid broke Monopoly. rss

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Jeremy Rhodes
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A friend of mine told me a story of his recent Monopoly experience with his family:
My friend, Jesse, his wife, Deanne and their son Logan were playing Monopoly. This son is adolescent at best, 13 tops. Deanne is apparently super competitive when it it comes to her game: Monopoly.
As with with many plays the parents were at each other with the kid in the middle. Eventually, as the kid's resources are running low he starts wheeling and dealing to give himself some breathing room. The dad offers the first deal: If you give me your property to complete my monopoly, I'll let you land on those spaces for free. The kid counters with being able to land on any of dad's properties for free. The dad accepts, convinced his son is gunning for second and it allows dad to gain some ground on mom who has much of the board.
Mom later asks for a similar deal: To complete her Monopoly (which will insure her ability to collect on a vast majority of properties in the game) she says son can land free on her properties.
Mom is, by far, in the lead, so the kid again counters: I'll give you the rest of my properties and my money except for $1. In return, I land on all your properties for free and you pay any fines I collect. The mother is hesitant but to sweeten the deal, the kid says he'll pay her all of his 'Pass Go' money. She agrees.
Eventually, dad can't withstand the onslaught and is forced from the game.

Mom: "Well I guess we won, Logan."
Logan: "No, I won..."
Mom: "No, we would just keep going back and forth, neither one of us would have won."
Logan: "No eventually, with taxes and fees you have to pay, you'll eventually go broke."
Mom: "That would take a very long time."
Logan: "Yes...but...eventually. Maybe it's five years down the road but... eventually I'll win."

Kid goes back to his room and never mentions it again.

Parents are thankful they're son isn't evil.

TLDR: Kid pits parents against each other, and wins in very unconventional way.

What are your thought? Does his theory hold up, have you ever heard of this strategy before? Obviously, the mom could reneg their deal, but c'mon this is a pretty awesome plan by the young kid.
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Jared Manning
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I'm not a rules stickler by any stretch of the imagination, but this is a prime example of why Monopoly catches such a bad rap -- people that inject broken house rules into the game. Landing on spaces for free completely negates the point of playing Monopoly. For Monopoly to work correctly, you have to play by the rules EXACTLY. Otherwise, it's a mess.
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Benj Davis
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That is quite ingenious.
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Stephen Williams
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I actually went and pulled up a copy of the official Monopoly rules, just to see what they had to say about trading.

The answer is... Nothing. The rules mention an auction if a player declines to buy an unowned property he lands on, and the option to sell a property to another player for whatever amount [of money] the two can agree on. There's no formal option to trade things though, let alone to trade esoteric favours like "not needing to pay rent on my properties."

Having said that, it's a well known fact that few, if any, people who play Monopoly actually play by RAW. As such, I have no problem accepting the above behaviour as yet another house rule this family uses. Given that this sort of house rule is allowed at their table, I think the son was quite shrewd in his trading, and is every bit deserving of his victory.
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Francisco Gutierrez
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Agreed, not playing by the rules is a pretty unconventional way to win a game.

Also that TL;DR doesn't accurately describe the game. The kid never pit the parents against each other. He tricked them both into letting him "cheat" then waited the game out. Clever, sure, but it didn't break the game.
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Jeremy Rhodes
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Immortal Thanos wrote:
I'm not a rules stickler by any stretch of the imagination, but this is a prime example of why Monopoly catches such a bad rap -- people that inject broken house rules into the game. Landing on spaces for free completely negates the point of playing Monopoly. For Monopoly to work correctly, you have to play by the rules EXACTLY. Otherwise, it's a mess.


They are happy playing it with their rules. I would not expect to play by those same rules.

I asked if they played the No Free Parking and Auctions. No & Yes respectively.

They seem to be playing by the rules in every other regard.
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Alexandre P.
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dwarvenfriend wrote:
What are your thought? Does his theory hold up, have you ever heard of this strategy before? Obviously, the mom could reneg their deal, but c'mon this is a pretty awesome plan by the young kid.


I may have begun a play of Monopoly once but I think I never finished one and I don't know the rules so I don't really understand where the trick is ... Is the boy winning because is mother will have to pay a lot of taxes and will go broken while I will win with his remaining few dollars ?
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Jeremy Rhodes
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joetaco wrote:
Clever, sure, but it didn't break the game.


No but I needed a way to get you hear. My friend's son plays Monopoly really well didn't seem as catchy.
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Pas L
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Would he actually win? If he gives her his GO money and they effectively never take money out of the game except by taxes isn't it likely her income might be greater than costs? Unless she was low on cash and had a bad run in the short term it might in fact be a draw?
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Freelance Police
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Did a bit of searching, and, yep, you cannot make deals for future consideration, which includes immunity.

"Other limitations involve the inability to grant immunity to someone. It’s simply not allowed." http://mospaw.com/monopoly/some-obscure-monopoly-rules-expla...

"In official tournament rules, you can never cut a deal involving future considerations, such as a promise to give someone the $200 you earn the next time you pass Go." http://boardgames.about.com/od/monopolyfaq/f/side_deals.htm

"You cannot trade futures or immunities - that is you may not make a deal for someone to get five free lands on your property." -- Kevin Tostado, Director of "Under the Boardwalk: The MONOPOLY Story." MonopolyDocumentary.comhttps://www.quora.com/What-deals-can-you-make-in-Monopoly
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Stephen Williams
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Xahendir wrote:

I may have begun a play of Monopoly once but I think I never finished one and I don't know the rules so I don't really understand where the trick is ... Is the boy winning because is mother will have to pay a lot of taxes and will go broken while I will win with his remaining few dollars ?


That's the theory, yes. Because a player is eliminated when they run out of money and can't get more by mortaging properties, etc.

lamaros wrote:
Would he actually win? If he gives her his GO money and they effectively never take money out of the game except by taxes isn't it likely her income might be greater than costs? Unless she was low on cash and had a bad run in the short term it might in fact be a draw?


He would eventually win. Emphasis on eventually. The game does not end until there's only one player left standing, and the kid cannot be eliminated.

The Mom might very well be getting more money than she pays out on most turns, due to the kid giving her his "Pass Go" money. However, if the game is to be played ad infinitum - until the proper win condition is observed - the Mom will eventually have a run of bad luck sufficient to bankrupt her. Like he said, it might take 5 years, but sooner or later he will win. Not a draw.
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Sean Tompkins
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She'll get $400 per round of the board - her and her son's $200 - the worst fee would be the income tax square, right? The only other fees would be the chance and community chest cards - she can liquidate all houses and hotels, so will never have the fees to pay those - she doesn't need them, since he's not paying money. I'd have to dig into the game more, but I'm not convinced she's in a losing state.

I do think it's ingenious strategy on the kid's part - and no matter what, he's guaranteed HE won't lose.
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Brad Johnson
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Jlerpy wrote:
That is quite ingenious.


It's ingenious as far as taking advantage of players who were just really not good at understanding the ramifications of deals they're making. Same kind of people who broke the American economy taking mortgages they had no chance of ever paying.
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Pas L
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Stewi wrote:
Xahendir wrote:

I may have begun a play of Monopoly once but I think I never finished one and I don't know the rules so I don't really understand where the trick is ... Is the boy winning because is mother will have to pay a lot of taxes and will go broken while I will win with his remaining few dollars ?


That's the theory, yes. Because a player is eliminated when they run out of money and can't get more by mortaging properties, etc.

lamaros wrote:
Would he actually win? If he gives her his GO money and they effectively never take money out of the game except by taxes isn't it likely her income might be greater than costs? Unless she was low on cash and had a bad run in the short term it might in fact be a draw?


He would eventually win. Emphasis on eventually. The game does not end until there's only one player left standing, and the kid cannot be eliminated.

The Mom might very well be getting more money than she pays out on most turns, due to the kid giving her his "Pass Go" money. However, if the game is to be played ad infinitum - until the proper win condition is observed - the Mom will eventually have a run of bad luck sufficient to bankrupt her. Like he said, it might take 5 years, but sooner or later he will win. Not a draw.


That's not how things work. If you're earning $400 every round the board and paying out only in taxes then your income is higher than your costs, unless you get poor rolls on the first turn when you have no liquid money you will never be headed.

Even then she would never, ever, be headed. Because the kid has no income of any sort, while she can liquidate properties and mortgage them to cover any costs, and had income above costs on nearly all turns of the board anyhow. Her existing assets would be more than enough to cover any bad luck.

It's a draw.
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Mike
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I think one possible issue would be the wording of the agreement he made with his mother. Did they agree that he didn't have to pay for all the properties she had? Or did the agreement cover all the properties she had and might have in the future? If the agreement was the former, then arguably it didn't cover the properties the mother acquired (from the father) after the agreement was made.

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tempus42 wrote:
It's ingenious as far as taking advantage of players who were just really not good at understanding the ramifications of deals they're making. Same kind of people who broke the American economy taking mortgages they had no chance of ever paying.


I thought the American economy was broken by predatory lenders who precisely understood the ramifications of deals they were making? Or am I misremembering this?
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Pas L
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MK99 wrote:
I think one possible issue would be the wording of the agreement he made with his mother. Did they agree that he didn't have to pay for all the properties she had? Or did the agreement cover all the properties she had and might have in the future? If the agreement was the former, then arguably it didn't cover the properties the mother acquired (from the father) after the agreement was made.



Yep, this is the only way the game plays out as anything other than a draw. I think it's clear from the original discussion that it was agreed to not pay on any properties, former or future.
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Brad Johnson
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wamsp wrote:
tempus42 wrote:
It's ingenious as far as taking advantage of players who were just really not good at understanding the ramifications of deals they're making. Same kind of people who broke the American economy taking mortgages they had no chance of ever paying.


I thought the American economy was broken by predatory lenders who precisely understood the ramifications of deals they were making? Or am I misremembering this?


Exactly - the lenders were the kid and the borrowers were the parents.
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wamsp wrote:
tempus42 wrote:
It's ingenious as far as taking advantage of players who were just really not good at understanding the ramifications of deals they're making. Same kind of people who broke the American economy taking mortgages they had no chance of ever paying.


I thought the American economy was broken by predatory lenders who precisely understood the ramifications of deals they were making? Or am I misremembering this?


It was both the lender and the borrowers. A predatory lender without the borrower who doesn't know what their getting into is just a pushy guy with no money.
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K S
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cormor321 wrote:
A predatory lender without the borrower who doesn't know what their getting into is just a pushy guy with no money.


Pushy with no money? Hmmm...I think I might be a customerless predatory lender...
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Larry L
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It is an entertaining story. It does not require dissecting.
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Pete
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Immunities have been illegal in every Monopoly tournament I have ever played in, though I'm not sure if that's an official Monopoly rule or a practical tournament rule.

Pete (thinks only a fool offers them anyway)
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Alexandre P.
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tempus42 wrote:
Jlerpy wrote:
That is quite ingenious.


It's ingenious as far as taking advantage of players who were just really not good at understanding the ramifications of deals they're making. Same kind of people who broke the American economy taking mortgages they had no chance of ever paying.


I was taught that Monopoly was created after the 1929 crisis by someone wanting to show the "evilness" of capitalism, isn't that true ?
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Xahendir wrote:
tempus42 wrote:
Jlerpy wrote:
That is quite ingenious.


It's ingenious as far as taking advantage of players who were just really not good at understanding the ramifications of deals they're making. Same kind of people who broke the American economy taking mortgages they had no chance of ever paying.


I was taught that Monopoly was created after the 1929 crisis by someone wanting to show the "evilness" of capitalism, isn't that true ?


Did 1903 happen sometime after 1929?
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Pete
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cormor321 wrote:
Xahendir wrote:
tempus42 wrote:
Jlerpy wrote:
That is quite ingenious.


It's ingenious as far as taking advantage of players who were just really not good at understanding the ramifications of deals they're making. Same kind of people who broke the American economy taking mortgages they had no chance of ever paying.


I was taught that Monopoly was created after the 1929 crisis by someone wanting to show the "evilness" of capitalism, isn't that true ?


Did 1903 happen sometime after 1929?
Possibly it was the Panic of 1893? The Landlord's Game was patented in 1904 (filing date in 1903, see https://www.google.com/patents/US748626) so that would be more fitting. Nine years' concept and development time seems probable. Could have been in response to the Panic of 1901 too, but that's a tighter timetable.

Pete (doesn't see a need to mock the guy)
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