Monopoly: Get Wrecked Edition

Digital Future LabResearch

Get Wrecked Monopoly

In this version of Monopoly players are assigned roles within the game. Once assigned, players are required to play that role throughout the entire game. Each role has a different set of guidelines they are required to play by.

Roles:

These are assigned at the start of the game and have to be kept throughout gameplay.

Car – Bruce Wayne

Starts game owning both dark blue properties aka Park Place and Boardwalk, $3000, and receives $300 each time they pass Go. This role has no restrictions on the purchasing of property and pays 50% of whatever the tax rate is (example: if it is 10% of all they own, this player only pays 5%)

Ship – Cousin Wendell

Starts game owning one yellow property and one utility, $2000, gets $250 each time they pass Go, and pays 70% of whatever the tax rate is (example: if it is 10% of all they own, this player only pays 7%). This role has no restrictions on purchasing of property.

Dog – McMable

Starts game owning one dark purple property, $1500, gets $200 when passing Go, and pays 80% of whatever the tax rate is (example: if it is 10% of all they own, this player only pays 8%). This role has no restrictions on the purchasing of property.

Iron – Lilith

Starts game owning one utility, $1500, gets $200 when passing Go, and pays 90% of whatever the tax rate is (example: if it is 10% of all they own, this player only pays 9%).

Horse-n-Rider – Star

Starts game owning no property, $1500, gets $200 when passing Go, pays 100% of whatever the tax rate is (example: if it is 10% of all they own, this player pays 10%). This role is not allowed to purchase any yellow or green properties.

Wheelbarrow – Stevie

Starts game owning no property, $1200, get $200 when passing Go but pays $25 to Free Parking for debt, and pays 100% taxes. If they land on unowned property and wish to purchase it, they must roll the dice again and roll an even number. If they roll an even number the bank has accepted their loan application; if they roll odd number, the bank did not accept their loan application.

Shoe – Joplin

Starts game owning no property, $1000, gets $200 when passing Go but pays $50 to Free Parking for debt, and pays 100% taxes. If they land on unowned property and wish to purchase they must roll the dice again and roll an even number. If they roll an even number the bank has accepted their loan application; if they roll odd number, the bank did not accept their loan application.

Thimble – Cress

Starts game owning no property, in Jail, $1000, gets $200 when passing Go but pays $75 to Free Parking for debt, and pays 100% taxes. If they land on unowned property and wish to purchase they must roll the dice again and roll an even number. If they roll an even number the bank has accepted their loan application; if they roll odd number, the bank did not accept their loan application.

Get Wrecked:

Every 10 rolls each player receives news, the number they roll for that turn corresponds to the scenario they must respond to.

  1. Accident: You get into a car accident as the at fault driver and don’t have car insurance. You now pay for repairs on the other person’s vehicle and your own; pay $500 to Free Parking.
  2. FEMA: There is a major flood in your area and all your properties are heavily damaged, you are without electricity and running water, and all of your properties are mortgaged but you receive nothing from the bank for your mortgaged properties.
  3. Cancer: Your life partner has been diagnosed with serious cancer, you must pay $1500 for treatment.
  4. Bad Credit: The next time you are able to purchase property you find out that your parents used your social security number for a credit card in your name; your credit is trashed and you must pay double the asking price to purchase the property.
  5. Loss of health insurance: Your baby’s daddy is nowhere to be found and the state wants child support from him; they cut off your health insurance until you can provide them with information about his whereabouts; pay $200 for immunization for your child.
  6. Lose your job: The bubble has burst, industry has dried up, downsizing is real and you are expendable; you lose your job and only receive half of what you would receive when you pass Go but debt stays the same.

Debrief and Takeaways:

Once the game has concluded have all players come back together to discuss their experience playing this version of Monopoly. Players should ask themselves the following questions.

  1. How is this version different from standard Monopoly?
  2. For your character were resources constrained (Have-Not) or resource rich (Have)?
    • What was the effect of this on you physical body?
    • What were the effects on your emotional state during and after game play?
    • What was the effect on your game play and ability to “Win”?
  3. What does it mean to “Lose” in Get Wrecked Monopoly?
  4. How is this system reflected in the real world?
  5. How does this relate to Intersectional Identity and Oppression?

Look around the world and everywhere we see the effects of the “haves” and the “have-nots”. The “Haves” work so hard every day supporting a system that continues to perpetuate their dominance in “having”. Meanwhile the “Have-Nots” are in a constant reactive state, reacting to a system that is stacked against them. In any game, digital or otherwise, it is possible to “stack the deck”. In the case of digital games, you can “change the sliders” to either favor you or hinder you, depending on what sort of gaming experience you’re looking for.

What we see in the world, specifically within the United States, is a white supremacist system that is designed to have the “sliders” work against People of Color (POC). The intensity of difficulty varies depending on factors such as class, religion, sexual orientation, gender expression, national origin, and legal status. However, the one consistency is, ironically enough, one that is completely arbitrary: skin color. The closer one is to “Whiteness” the more the sliders favor you; the further from “Whiteness” one finds themselves, the more the sliders hinder you.

When looking at systemic oppression through an intersectional lens we can see beyond the Black/White binary narrative which can be unhelpful and limiting. The slider metaphor in the game allows us to see intersectionality in action by directly affecting people’s mobility and resources.

This changes the narrative beyond “Are you wrecked or are you not wrecked or who is the most wrecked?” to “how are you being wrecked?” This is a key piece of insight because it allows us to see the cage we live in and begin to dismantle it instead of touting it like a badge of honor or a static piece of culture. It is also key to healing because it allows everyone participating an opportunity to enter in with compassion and hopefully, experience empathy. Everyone has been wounded by this system, everyone needs healing, and everyone needs freedom!