Monopoly: why we're all playing wrong

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If you find that a game of Monopoly can last for hours it is probably because you've never read the rules and are playing it completely wrong.

Now a games blogger has launched a campaign to publicise a little known rule that leads to faster and livelier play of the popular board game.

Monopoly rules state that when players land on a space but do not choose to purchase the property, it must go up for auction.

The goal is that a bidding war will break out, prompting another player to buy the space and speeding up the game.

However, many players of Monopoly, which is sold in 111 countries around the world, are unaware of this rule, meaning that properties remain unsold until another player lands on the square again.

Official rules
Official rules from Hasbro, which makes the game, state: 'Whenever you land on an unowned property you may buy that property from the Bank at its printed price.

"You receive the Title Deed card showing ownership; place it face-up in front of you.

"If you do not wish to buy the property, the Banker sells it at auction to the highest bidder. Any player, including the one who declined the option to buy it at the printed price, may bid. Bidding may start at any price."

More fun
Johnny Nexus, the editor of the Critical Miss blog, which launched The Campaign For Real Monopoly, said playing by the rules makes the game more fun.

He added: "Firstly, it speeds up the game as it enables the quicker collection of a matched set of streets (and remember that it's only when players have collected sets, and can start building houses, that the game moves into its final phase).

"Secondly, it makes the game much more interesting by massively increasing the interaction between players."

Broken rules
So why are so many people playing by the wrong rules? Nexus puts it down to people skipping the rules and simply being taught how to play by their parents.

He adds: "Monopoly is something you learn through word-of-mouth in childhood, like riding a bike or tying your shoelaces. Your mother, who never read the rules but was instead taught them by her father, taught you, and one day you will teach your children, again without reading the rules first. She passed on broken rules to you and you'll pass them on to your kids."

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