Monopoly City Streets allows you to do the traditional Monopoly wheeling and dealing but on the biggest game board yet: the real world. Using data from Google Maps and the OpenStreetMap project, you can purchase entire streets and build properties on it in this massively multiplayer browser-based game. Now is the perfect time to join! Monopoly City Streets originally launched September 9th, 2009 but due to overwhelming load issues and a number of bugs that cropped up due to its popularity the developers took the game down, fixed some bugs, and have just relaunched it. All user data was wiped out with the relaunch, so everybody has to re-sign up meaning you’re not far behind anybody at this point.
Here’s a walk-through where I’m purchasing land in the town I grew up in: Manteno, IL. I always wanted to own the place.
You don’t sign up or create a user name until after you purchase your first street. So let’s search for Manteno from the welcome message’s search box:
This will take us to Manteno proper. We’ll need to zoom in to find some streets to buy, so click the ‘Zoom in’ button Mr. Monopoly is pointing to or double-click on the map where you want to go. Those red signs indicate that there are streets for sale in this area.
I’m going zoom in and locate N. Maple St. as the first street I want to buy. Mr. Monopoly’s pane will turn into a list of streets available for purchase. To purchase N Maple St, I click on the link on the pane in the right. It’s going to cost me 1,362,000 Monopoly bucks (virtual money).
After clicking the link, a little property card (like from traditional Monopoly) will pop-up and give you some details on the property. The street you clicked on should be highlighted in purple so you know what you’re buying. For some reason, the purple highlighting is out of sync a little bit with the Google Maps. Since I want the street and it’s available, I’m going to click the Buy button.
Clicking Buy for our first street takes us to the Register screen. Fill it out with your details to create your account. You’ll need to create a user name and answer a CAPTCHA question and hit the register button.
Once you complete the registration, you’ll buy the street and the cost will be taken out of the 3 million virtual dollars you started with. You can see your bankroll counter in the top-right of the screen. The street you just bought will turn red instead of purple and the property card will give you the option to build property now. Let’s hit the ‘Build Property’ button so we can get some rent coming our way.
Hitting the ‘Build Property’ button is going to bring up a screen where we can select the building type to build. Different types of buildings cost different amounts and bring in varying amounts of rent. I’m not quite sure the best strategy to go about, but I’m going to build the High School I went to so I’m going to choose the four-sided fortress. It will bring in 680,000 virtual dollars in rent each day.
You now look at the map again and orange cones have been placed along the street you own where you can place the building you just chose. I’m going to select the cone at the end of Fifth St since that’s roughly where the high school is. If you’d like to back out from buying a building or at least this building click the ‘Select a Different Building’ button in the top-left message.
Once you select a cone, you’ll have to confirm that’s where you want to build. Once you play a building, it cannot be moved. I confirmed the location for my building and the map is updated to reflect the building I built there. The value of N Maple St increased and I should start collecting rent from the building soon.
Those are the basics of Monopoly City Streets. Beyond that, you continue on and interact with other people to make trades or purchase streets from other people. Your first 5 streets are tax free. After that, you are charged 3% of your rent per street. So continue on and buy any other streets you want or build any other properties you want. The “better” streets will go fast, so you might want to make those a priority. Save up the rent you accumulate each day and make your next strategic moves.
Use the tools at the bottom of the screen to accomplish your tasks quickly. The Search button allows you to easily jump to different locations around the world. The Buy Streets button allows you to purchase streets that are available in the area you are looking. The View my streets button will show you a list of your properties so you can jump around easily to them. The Alerts button will show you your in-game inbox in case any deals or messages from the developers come your way. The Leaderboard will then show you locally, nationally, globally, and amongst your friends who’s leading the way. You can add friends under the leaderboard if you know their username.
Every once in a while, you might end up with a Chance card. This gives you a chance to build a bonus building. A bonus building, like a park, will prevent a street from hazards and bulldozers.
Follow the Developer’s blog for useful information about the game and give Monopoly City Streets a chance of its own by purchasing your first street and signing up here: http://www.monopolycitystreets.com/