Today, the first-ever official Melbourne Monopoly game was announced at a ceremony at Federation Square. Lets just say we think it’s as representative of the city as the kangaroo scrotum key rings for sale at a Swanston Street souvenir shop, and probably not as useful.
On sale today, the special edition will feature a tram, a takeaway coffee cup, Phar Lap, a Sherrin AFL football, graffiti spray can and a “city of literature book” as game pieces.
The MCG has scooped the most expensive (royal blue) position and sits next to Federation Square on the board. In all, 22 Melbourne and Victorian landmarks have been selected, along with four major city train stations: Flinders Street, Southern Cross, Parliament and Melbourne Central.
Since the first announcement earlier this year, the public put forward suggestions of what should be included on the board.
Landmarks that made it are NGV, Queen Victoria Market, Rod Laver Arena, Chapel Street, St Kilda, Brighton Beach boxes and Melbourne University.
There’s also been an attempt at putting a “Melbourne twist” to the Community Chest and Chance cards. For example: “A Fitzroy hipster takes too long ordering a half-strength, decaf, soy-mocha frappacino, setting you back three spaces”, or “Collect $100 for picking the winning horse at the Melbourne Cup”.
Firstly, no one’s ordered frappacinos in Melbourne since 2005. If you’re in a place that’s serving them, you have a whole other set of problems.
And while it’s nice that everyone got a bit of a say, we think the point of the game got a bit lost in the process. You can’t build a hotel on the Shrine of Remembrance, guys.
Lets look at the first two positions on the board, for example. What was originally the dodgy part of the board (Old Kent Road and Whitechapel Road), is now Hardware Lane and Hosier Lane, two spots in Melbourne fighting for the title of Highest Concentration of Selfie Sticks. We would have suggested up-and-coming suburbs Preston and Kensington. If you hear whisperings of a doughnut shop in a warehouse in either – that place is going to be royal blue within three to five years.
And while it’s good to see so many intrinsically Melbourne icons included as the game pieces, such as coffee (we’ll assume it’s a flat white), a graffiti spray can (#streetart) and Phar Lap (born in New Zealand), here are some other suggestions for game pieces:
And here are our suggestions for some better Chance cards:
An undercover ticket inspector nabs you on the tram! Pay $75 now or maybe $223 later – are you feeling lucky?
You’ve been waiting three hours at Lune, only to be told everything is sold out. Go straight home, do not collect croissants.
You’ve been lured into a futile conversation about which is better: north or south of the river. Everyone pays $50 – there are no winners.
You tried to get a table at Chin Chin at 7pm. Pay the bank the $200 you spend on drinks downstairs while waiting for your table.
You forgot about the footy and you’re stuck on Punt Road. Pay the bank the next 45 minutes of your life.
You correctly predicted the weather and dressed appropriately! Collect $100.
Your train is delayed due to water on the tracks. Go back three spaces.
You buy shares in the Melbourne Star Observation Wheel. Pay the bank $200.
With contributions from Lucy Bulling, Emily Naismith, Miriam Kauppi, Nick Connellan.
Monopoly: Melbourne edition is available in toy stores for $49.95.