Just in Time for Christmas!

Published: December 17, 2018

By Jim Lichtman
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No, it’s not the latest Hallmark Christmas movie. It’s a new game from Parker Brothers that you and the whole family can be engaged and enraged in this holiday season.

You know there’s a culture shift in the zeitgeist when toy company Hasbro — through it’s Parker Brothers division — announces a new version of the venerable Monopoly board game, aptly titled: Monopoly: Cheaters Edition.

Have I known people who’ve cheated at Monopoly? Yes… Me!

When someone would get up to go to the bathroom, I would subtly rearrange houses or take an extra hundred from the bank. My mother would usually catch me, and I’d have to listen to an endless sermon about the consequences of dishonesty.

“How would you feel if you found out that the person you trusted cheated you?,” she would pointedly ask.

Now, however, Parker Bros. seems to be rewarding all us cheaters with our own sanctioned version of dishonesty.

“Feel like you can get away with a whole lot more? Then play like a true cheater!” That’s the tag line for the new version.

“A recent study conducted by Hasbro revealed that nearly half of game players attempt to cheat during Monopoly games, so in 2018, we decided it was time to give fans what they’ve been craving all along – a Monopoly game that actually encourages cheating,” Jonathan Berkowitz, Senior Vice President of Hasbro says.

Attention: Future Swindlers… according to Hasbro:

  • The twist on the classic game encourages fans to cheat during gameplay.
  • The Cheater’s Edition comes with 15 cheat cards which ask players to carry out tasks throughout the game.
  • These can range from taking money from the bank to moving someone else’s token on your turn.
  • If successful, players will get rewards like extra cash or free properties to help them get further in the game.


  • If they’re caught, players may have to hand over money or wind up handcuffed to the board game in jail.

Some of the fraudulent activities include:

  • Stealing money from the bank
  • Placing a hotel on one of your pieces of property
  • Removing a hotel from someone else’s property
  • Taking an extra $100 in Monopoly money from the bank when you pass go.
  • Moving another player’s token instead of your own on your turn.
  • Giving someone less money than you owe them.
  • Collecting rent for someone else’s property

“For the first time in Monopoly history, there is no designated Banker,” says Berkowitz. “Players are in control of the Bank on their turn, and pass it to the next player when their turn is over, making it easier to pull off ‘cheats’ such as a Bank Heist.”

“If you take a close look at the game board,” Hasbro writes, “a few of the spaces have been ‘hacked’ by cheaters. Several spaces have designated prices on them.

“If you’re the first to land on Pennsylvania Avenue, you don’t need to pay for it. The property is free for the taking.”

My question for Berkowitz: If you play the new version of Monopoly honestly, is that considered cheating?

“We’ve finally decided to embrace our less-than-honest fans by encouraging them to partake in those iconic (yet sometimes unspoken) Monopoly moments that occur during family game nights,” says Berkowitz. “We’re excited to see what fans can get away with and how they’ll react to the new sneaky twists in the game.”

What would my mother say?

“How much is a good reputation worth, Jimmy?”


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