25 Little-Known Facts About Monopoly, 80 Years Later

The story behind your family's favorite board game.

ByABC News
January 22, 2015, 3:08 PM
Monopoly Game (1935)
Monopoly Game (1935)

— -- intro: Monopoly has endured as a family favorite game since 1935.

That’s 80 years of passing "GO" and collecting $200.

In celebration of its 80th year on toy store shelves, here’s 25 facts about “the world’s favorite gaming brand.”

quicklist:title: Monopoly was created by Charles Darrow. category:media: 28408447 text:

Darrow was from Philadelphia, and he first developed the Monopoly game in 1933.

quicklist:title: The first pieces were made from materials from Darrow's home. category:media:text:

A piece of oilcloth covered the board, the cards were handwritten, and the houses and hotels were made from wooden scraps.

quicklist:title: The shiny pieces were inspired by Darrow's nieces. category:media: text:

The first Monopoly die-cast tokens were metal charms from the girls' charm bracelets.

quicklist:title: The original game included 10 metal tokens. category:media: text:

There was an iron, purse, lantern, racecar, thimble, shoe, top hat, battleship, cannon and a rocking horse.

quicklist:title: Monopoly was not an immediate success.category:media:text:

Darrow attempted to sell Monopoly to Parker Brothers, but it was rejected for “52 fundamental errors” including the game’s length, theme and complexity. Following Darrow's success selling Monopoly in local Philadelphia department stores, Parker Brothers reconsidered and negotiated the rights to market the game.

quicklist:title: The city of London was the setting of the first licensed Monopoly game.category:media:text:

The theme is now Atlantic City, New Jersey.

quicklist:title: More than one billion people have played Monopoly worldwide. category:media: text:

The Monopoly game is currently published in 47 languages and sold in 114 countries.

quicklist:title: The game was pretty darn cheap. category:media:text:

The original Monopoly sold for around $2.

quicklist:title: The current classic Monopoly game includes eight tokens.category:media:text:

There's the battleship, top hat, Scottie dog, racecar, thimble, boot, cat, and wheelbarrow.

quicklist:title: More than 20 different tokens have made their way into the gamecategory:media:text:

Some tokens we've seen include an elephant, purse, and a bag of money.

quicklist:title: There are 40 spaces on the game board and 28 properties.category:media:text:

This includes 22 color-coded streets, four railroads and two utility spaces. There are three Chance spaces, three Community Chest spaces, a Luxury Tax space, and an Income Tax space on the classic Monopoly board.

quicklist:title: The three most-landed-on properties in the classic Monopoly game are Illinois Avenue, “GO” and B&O Railroad.category:media:text:

quicklist:title: The total amount of money in a classic Monopoly game is $20,580.category:media: 28408083text:

quicklist:title: There have been many adaptations of the game. category:media:text: More than 300 licensed versions of Monopoly have been developed with themes such as sports teams and movies.

quicklist:title: Monopoly Junior came in 1990. category:media:text:

In 1990, Monopoly Junior arrived on the scene, introducing kids under 8 years old to the favorite fast-dealing property trading game.

quicklist:title: The world's most expensive Monopoly set was created in 1998.category:media:text:

It was created by San Francisco jeweler Sidney Mobell and it valued at $2 million.

quicklist:title: The highest-rent properties vary by region.category:media:text:

In the U.S., it's named “Boardwalk” after a street in Atlantic City. In Spain, it's named “Paseo del Prado” after a street in Madrid, and in France, “Rue de la Paix” is the name of the most-coveted property space.

quicklist:title: Games of Monopoly have been played in peculiar places. category:media:text: These include on a ceiling, underground, and on a U.S. nuclear submarine.

quicklist:title: The longest Monopoly game played on record was a real marathon.category:media:text:

It lasted 70 straight days.

quicklist:title: Monopoly was introduced on the iPhone in 2008.category:media:text:

Digital versions are now available on all major platforms.

quicklist:title: The iron token was replaced. category:media:text: In the 2013 “Save Your Token” campaign, Monopoly fans voted to replace the iron token with a new cat token.

quicklist:title: "House rules" are now included. category:media: 28408659text: In 2014, Monopoly fans globally debated on Facebook which of their favorite “house rules” Hasbro should add to the classic game.

quicklist:title: You can now create your own personalized Monopoly game. category:media:text:

In 2014, the “My Monopoly” game allowed players to personalize their own game at home with their own photos.

quicklist:title: Fans gather to compete in a world championship. category:media:text:

Every few years, national champions from around the globe meet for the Monopoly World Championships tournament.

quicklist:title: There's an anniversary edition out now. category:media: 28408757text:

The Monopoly 80th Anniversary Edition game features one iconic token from each of its eight decades including the bathtub, locomotive, money bag, cat, cannon, cavalry, and the Monopoly World Championships trophy.