Elizabeth Barrette (ysabetwordsmith) wrote,
Elizabeth Barrette
ysabetwordsmith

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The Landlords Game and the Single Tax

Once upon a time, the roots of Monopoly began with a board and accessories that could be used to play two diametrically opposed games: the Landlord's Game and the Single Tax (aka Prosperity).  The first is similar to the familiar version, in which players try to gain as much money as possible to bankrupt everyone else as a means of winning.  The second does the exact opposite, collecting money into public funds and distributing it for public good.  There's a version where everyone wins when the person who started with the least money has doubled their holdings

I find the earlier versions of the game much more engrossing, as they use the same set of gaming equipment to explore different economic principles and practices.  In essence, it's a simulation, not just a game.  I wish that these earlier versions were available.  The boards can be seen and are described in the rules, but the cards are described only en masse, and not all could be recreated by examining the board.  There aren't many cooperative board games available, and I think it would be fun to play either the Single Tax or Prosperity versions.
Tags: economics, entertainment, gaming, gender studies, history, networking
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