Lets go back in time, when the only board games I knew about, where Monopoly, Life, Clue, Candyland, Guess Who, it was the dark ages of board games, all of my friends (including me) got some video game console like Nintendo or Sega, and maybe 1 or 2 board games, want to guess which one always repeated with my friends? Monopoly, and I hated… the game (for me was boring, monotonous and just plain) and everybody love it… (this is the same review I did a few days ago in Spanish, please excuse any bad grammar or spelling).
So Monopoly was everything I ever knew about board games, I know since a long long ago I could have found some pretty good board games, but in Mexico it was Monopoly and that’s it.
So, time passes and Monopoly keeps going strong, with new “versions” that only change the board colors and the pawns, and my feelings about it don’t change, still don’t like it, a few weeks ago I found out about this new Monopoly, the Gamer edition, I said to myself, “Gamer Edition, that sounds so generic, it’s another reskin of the same boring game”, to my surprise, it wasn’t, the rules change, the mechanics got upgraded, the game got some sort of mini-expansions, all things that sounds “obvious” in this time of board gaming, but for me I felt like a big step in Hasbro way of business.
So, let’s start the review, first the good stuff, you can choose different heroes and each one have a distinct flavor (abilities) that make it fun to choose another one on the next game, the Power Packs are a cool feature, you can buy it and get a new character to choose, or you don’t buy it and nothing is missing, the bosses are something unique and essential to this game, the board got some good art, the box got some cool art work and the new mechanics make it unique enough to be consider its own and not just another “Monopoly game”, hopefully this is the first step towards a real Mario Party board game.
Now the bad stuff (I want to clear something, just because I say a game have flaws, doesn’t mean it sucks or I don’t like it, is just saying “they can do better in this part”), the coins and board quality is good, not great but good, the cards on the other hand feel somehow “generic” or cheap, I got the Game Stop Collector’s Edition and sadly the plastic inside felt a little too cheap for my taste… and the worst part (the one they should have spent a lot more money on) the minis look good from a distance, but if you look closely you’ll see a really bad paintjob, also why didn’t Monopoly used more characters? Of the 13 available 3 are different Mario versions…
On a side note, another thing I like to express myself, is this exclusive thing (the Game Stop version)… any collector knows is something good for making that game worth much more in the long time, but in reality I think it only makes 2 things happen, first… the resellers, the stereotypical guy that goes online or store and gets 1,000 copies of the same game (I think the store shouldn’t allow it, but whatever), and the only thing he wants to do is messing with the supply and demand of the market, some people tell “well that’s not a bad thing” but no… try doing that in the stock exchange and let’s see how fast you end up in jail; the second tendency I think this bring out, is something I like to call “the street fighter II syndrome”, if you remember, this game was prostituted by Capcom hundreds of times every time the same thing “now we make the last patch, this is so balanced, this is the ULTIMATE version”, in the board game community this can become the same thing, you can buy the regular version or the collectors, but in a few months the collectors 2.0 and in some more months the anniversary edition… and so on, and you know it, if you don’t buy this you’ll never get this plastic thing or this card, so pay the next 50 bucks to get it.
Getting back to the review, taking into consideration the quality of the game and components, the fun factor, the new mechanics and the theme.
My rating: 6 of 10, a fun game with flaws, but a big step in the good direction.