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I've always loved Monopoly as a board game and I've been trying to find a good digital version of it for ages now. I found one but this isn't it.
When I first saw the game in Gamestation for £29.99 (possibly more) I was stunned! You may as well get a posh Monopoly board with the credit card thing for that kind of money. Thankfully it's online price was around £13 when I bought it so I figured I'd give it a try.
Monopoly Streets takes the traditional game and attempts to modernise it with flashy graphics, multiple game boards and moving character tokens. The graphics are good in my opinion, I've read reviews that the board isn't sharp enough but I find it more than adequate. You can see what's what and it looks like a monopoly board, I'm satisfied. If you want something that looks like the real thing, buy a real board.
There are a number of good things about Monopoly Streets which I'll go into first. Good news should always come first right?
Customisable rules -
You can change the rules with great flexibility here, they've even included some of the famous home rules which I've never understood but it's nice for those who play them (think tax on free parking ... weird).
Unlockable boards -
As you progress through the game and achieve things, you can unlock different game boards which is a nice touch even though I ALWAYS stick to the classic board. The other boards have 3D graphics with sky scrapers etc but I'm not really into that.
Online Play -
This is a great feature, if you can never find anyone to play Monopoly with (read PureDark has no friends) then this will be great for you. The online play works great with support for the maximum number of players, home rules, choice of boards etc. Everything you'd expect from online features are here. I will say this though, the user base seems to be a little small and sometimes you'll struggle to find an opponent. Why does no-one in the world want to play Monopoly with me?!
I think that nicely sums up the good points. The bad ones are about to follow.
They are infuriating and annoying and I just want a silver token to lightly bounce around the board and that's it. Instead, each token has a character with it to make the game more 'fun'. What this actually translates into is an annoying little 3D character with repetitive animations and voices that will make you want to stab things. I would compare the voices to The Sims because the characters don't say anything they speak gibberish in whatever tone matches the games events. If you go to jail you're character will bow their head in shame and say 'blehhhhhmehhhh'. I can still hear the captain of the battleship going 'ooohhhooooo' as he scores yet another double roll. Another thing I'll say about tokens is that there are more available on the PS Store for download (for a fee of course) so if the existing bunch of delights don't destroy your sanity then I'm sure you can find one on there that will.
AI Bias -
Why would you include difficulty levels on Monopoly?! You can choose if you want your opponent to be a newcomer or a monopoly pro. Essentially if your day is going too well and you need a little anger in your life, choose expert and be humiliated by your opponents. They will roll doubles every time (but not enough to go to jail!), land on their ideal properties and refuse to trade with you EVER. You of course will spend the game in jail as your opponents nab all the properties and score chance cards which award them tax rebates. I'm not even kidding here either, this happens. So yeah set the difficulty fairly low if you want a chance of winning, and who doesn't want to win?
Long Winded -
Monopoly is a game which can take hours anyway and with the inclusion of all the animations (which can be turned off a little bit but not entirely) and Mr freaking Monopoly running around the board to give you your £200 'Go Money', it's going to take ages! Even the dice rolls last too long for me.
In conclusion I would say that they've made a fairly good Monopoly game but all the bells and whistles which they've no doubt worked hard on just frustrate rather than innovate the experience. Kids might like the 'fun' characters but I'd recommend something like Mario Party on the Wii if that's the sort of thing you were going for. There's a great Monopoly 'mini' available on the Playstation Store for download which is quite cut down but it gets the job done and in good time which is more than I can say for this title. If you desperately need online play then this will be your best and possibly only option.
Thanks for reading, hope it was helpful! All feedback is appreciated and considered. Stay cool.