J Ashton
United States
San Dimas
California
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I thought I was raising my son right.

When he was 4, my wife and I started letting him play Carcassonne with us. He was too young to score, so he just placed a tile on his turns. It added a fun random factor to our games--sometimes he’d lengthen my road, sometimes he’d add to my wife’s monastery, sometimes he’d inadvertently stifle a city by leading a road to an unfinished square. I noticed it was usually beneficial to build my features in the direction he was sitting. As he got older we gave him a huge point bonus at the beginning and let him score himself.

When he was 6, we let him play Catan. He got to start with 3 settlements instead of 2, and the robber was never (or rarely) played on him.

Soon after, we introduced him to other games, giving him a handy-cap or huge point bonus at the beginning: Alhambra, Small World, Kingdom Builder, etc. He was loving these great board games! Our family was loving life as gamers!

Then it happened… he saw a dusty box with bright red letters that had been sitting dormant for years on the bottom of our game shelf. Over the years, I had told my wife a couple times that we should get rid of it--give it away. I was trying to avoid this type of situation, or at least free up shelf space for a more productive use of game time... But each time she insisted we keep it--just in case we wanted to play it again. Well, “Happy Wife = Happy Life”: so it stayed around.

My son had found it: MONOPOLY. “Let’s play this one!” We busted it out. I thought he would lose interest of this "bored-game" (pun intended) after just one play, considering the other wonderful games loved. NOPE, it back-fired. After one play, he was hooked. Every week he demanded we play Monopoly on game day (usually Sunday afternoon).

After a few frustrating weeks/months (I’m not sure which, it was such a traumatic time in my life), I tried weaning him off: he could pick the game every other week (read: always Monopoly), and my wife or I got to pick the other weeks. Further, on his 8th birthday we gave him his first REAL board game (Candyland & Shoots-and-Ladders don’t count): Kingdomino. I was hoping he’d love playing his very OWN boardgame more than one of ours… but that only lasted a week or two: “It’s not as fun as Monopoly.” We were soon back to demands of Monopoly every week.

Well, the compromise for now is we play Monopoly once per month, and on other weeks we give him a few other options to choose from. Occasionally, when he’s feeling even more generous, he just lets my wife or I pick one straight-up.

But Monopoly once per month still feels way too often… that’s where I need YOUR help. How do I completely wean him off? I think that ultimately he loves Monopoly because of handling paper money (well, he loves handling real money too, don’t we all?), and dice rolling. Are there any other shorter and more interesting games out there that have paper money and dice? Any other game suggestions to pacify Monopoly’s monopoly on his addiction (emphasis on SHORTER games)?
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bort
Australia
Brisbane
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jhashton wrote:
Any other game suggestions

Maybe something like Machi Koro or Space Base?
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Greg Cox
Australia
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Maybe they're all wrong here and Monopoly is a better game than the so called proper boardgames?😃😲
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Gláucio Reis
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Rio de Janeiro
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You will have to resort to the secondary market for this, but Dragonland is a great roll-and-move game aimed at kids. No money in the game, though.

 
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J Ashton
United States
San Dimas
California
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bortmonkey wrote:
Maybe something like Machi Koro or Space Base?

Machi Koro looks like a great suggestion. I'll have to check it out. Thanks!
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Kit
United Kingdom
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Try to get him to play Monopoly with his friends, and other stuff with you? When I was a kid, me and my brother and our two best friends would play long, long games of Monopoly very regularly. We invented new rules so that games could go on longer by allowing us to get deeply indebted to the bank. My brother always won and the other three of us would share our resources to be able to hold out longer against him. We enjoyed this very much for years. It was great! I played Monopoly again as an adult and found it incredibly boring. But back then it was wonderful, and the stories and relationships we built up through our many plays were the best bit. Maybe your son can get some of his friends similarly hooked? I'd he's so into it, it probably won't be hard for him to get them into it too. And then that frees you from being the one who needs to satisfy his Monopoly urges...
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Jessica Eccles
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If he likes paper money, maybe try another game with paper money like Power Grid. Seriously, paper money, dice rolling, maybe Las Vegas is the game for you!

Also, try some of these Monopoly variants http://brightestbulb.net/games/monopoly/home_rules/ (note: i have not tried any of these [because I've not played Monooply in a very long time] but they look to have been well thought out and with each rule change there is a description of how it affects the game).
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Chris Curtis
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I wouldn't play now, but I really loved Monopoly as a kid. I made my own Chance and Community Chest cards with ridiculous payouts that made the game last forever. But I wasn't playing with my parents.

You can play Monopoly for a designated time, say one hour, and most cash and assets wins. Or you can play that the game is over when the first player goes bankrupt. Presumably you're playing the written rules with auctions and no money in Free Parking, right?
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Michael Ring
United States
Salem
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Let me get a bit more info first...With or without corporal punishment?

Kidding aside...Lords of Vegas.
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Marina SC
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I haven't played it myself, but I've heard a lot of people say that Lords of Vegas is a "good" version of Monopoly. It has buying properties, trading, dice-rolling (but not roll-and-move), paper money, and is supposed to be a lot of fun. If it's not too complicated for your son, it sounds like a good bet
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Michael Ring
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Trying to play darts after a 12 pack: It's fun until someone loses an eye. Then...it's hilarious, and probably an impending lawsuit.
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Mashpotassium wrote:
I haven't played it myself, but I've heard a lot of people say that Lords of Vegas is a "good" version of Monopoly. It has buying properties, trading, dice-rolling (but not roll-and-move), paper money, and is supposed to be a lot of fun. If it's not too complicated for your son, it sounds like a good bet

<Rubs chin> Yeah heard that too...somewhere...
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Thom0909
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Let him find games at his own pace. If he likes Monopoly, so be it. Is once a month really too frequent?

Push him into liking the "right" games and he may some day rebel against the whole thing.
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J Ashton
United States
San Dimas
California
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kitwick wrote:
Try to get him to play Monopoly with his friends, and other stuff with you? When I was a kid, me and my brother and our two best friends would play long, long games of Monopoly very regularly. We invented new rules so that games could go on longer by allowing us to get deeply indebted to the bank. My brother always won and the other three of us would share our resources to be able to hold out longer against him. We enjoyed this very much for years. It was great! I played Monopoly again as an adult and found it incredibly boring. But back then it was wonderful, and the stories and relationships we built up through our many plays were the best bit. Maybe your son can get some of his friends similarly hooked? I'd he's so into it, it probably won't be hard for him to get them into it too. And then that frees you from being the one who needs to satisfy his Monopoly urges...

Great suggestion! I can't wait for my younger kids to be old enough to play with him--then they can all feed the addiction together without using my time. In the mean time--hopefully he can get some friends on board (pun intended).

You make a great point--I played a lot of monopoly with my siblings as a kid, and those are some memorable times building comradery with them.
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Dave Rubin
United States
Trenton
New Jersey
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Would practicing aversion therapy by crushing him at Monopoly count as tough love? devil
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J Ginsbu
United States
Teaneck
New Jersey
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The game I preferred to Monopoly around that age was Hotels. We had one of the ‘80s versions. You might look around for a cheap used copy. It’s certainly quicker than Monopoly but has a lot of the same flavor.

No paper money, but maybe give Survive: Escape from Atlantis! (or Survive: Space Attack!) a try. It has a classic board game feel, nice tactile components, and plenty of opportunities to be mean. And it’s quite a good game! If playing 2p, be sure to play the “crowded island” (I think it’s called) variant from the rules.
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John Fly
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Play it with him as much as he wants. Cherish every moment with your son. It may not be your cup of tea but they grow up fast and no one knows what the future holds.
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Alicia Smith
Australia
Perth
Western Australia
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Maybe we can grab a game sometime?
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Squatter has a certain charm even now.
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Eric Monte
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I would lean in to his love of monopoly and play it often.

He'll get tired of it like most people on this site but, you want him to keep playing games. If monopoly is flavor of the week or month or year, so be it.

We all move on from certain games eventually.

Make sure you play by the real rules, should shorten things up a bit and make it even less appealing to his tastes.

Some people won't like this comparison but, Merchant of Venus is similar to monopoly in some ways: paper money, buying assets, trying to get the most money, and roll and move. But it is obviously far superior. Might be tough sell at first, but he's probably ready for that, after his monopoly phase is over.
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James C
United States
Alexandria
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Kids never turn out how you want! What a waste of time and love!

Maybe tell him that Monopoly accidentally got put in the clothes dryer and tell him it turned into Monopoly Deal Card Game?
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Nathanael Robinson
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Cary
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It looks like you have two possible paths.

1. Play Monopoly. He likes it. It could be worse.

2. Figure out what he likes about Monopoly. Perhaps he likes when games are meaner than what you have exposed him to. No offence, but your collection may be too polite for him. Maybe he wants something with deeper combat or in which you take stuff from people.
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Adam McLean
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First ... I agree as a few others noted above. You are blessed to have a child wanting to play many boardgames with you, that will hopefully continue on as he gets older.

If I'm not mistaken, he still seems a bit younger (< 10), so he will get into bigger and better games ... a couple ways you could introduce those games while still playing what he likes on a regular basis:

Determine what it is he really enjoys in a game and take the plunge (see if he'll get excited for something other than tile laying or card games), save up if you have to ...

If he likes the theme and interaction, get a good Ameritrash game that's heavy on theme (or look at themes you know he likes ... if he enjoys Star Wars, look at Imperial Assault, for example). You might include him on the research, watch the video reviews with him, find a few you know you'll like too and stick to those.

If he prefers a little more strategy and doesn't like player interaction as much ... maybe look into some of the Euros available.


I wouldn't go so far as to get rid of Monopoly ... he has to do it. Maybe there is another family who would like but wouldn't be able to buy it and he can gift it to them. For such a generous gesture, you take him out and buy together the shiny new 'real' game you've been looking into together.


Just a few thoughts ... it may or may not work out for you that way. Whatever the case may be ... whatever you do, continue playing board games with him, bring his friends and their families over to the house to join you. You'll be glad you didn't let these opportunities slip by.
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Justin Fuhrmann
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Harrison
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Does he happen to like Super Mario? It sounds weird, but Monopoly Gamer actually improves the experience. There's a boss fight every time someone passes go. There are only 8 bosses, and once those are gone, the game is over. So, it's a built-in game timer that prevents the game from going forever.
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Mike Jones
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Play it with him and make sure he plays with the correct rules.

Not a bad live auction filler when played by the rules.

Once you play it you will have plenty of time to play other games and enjoy the memories of playing a game the he enjoys with him. You can spend 45mins to an hour on a game he wants to play.
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Julien K
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Kyoto
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For what it's worth, I heard that Monopoly: Tropical Tycoon DVD Game is a reasonable version of the game. But yeah, otherwise, might as well enjoy the game with him and be sure to play by the correct rules
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Jefferson Krogh
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I loved Monopoly when I was his age, too. Now I spend all my time here on BGG talking about all the other games. I still own Monopoly, and I would play it with the right group and the proper rules, if the opportunity struck.

It's okay for him to love Monopoly right now. Enjoy the time you have to play it with him. It'll be over before you knew what happened.
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