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Debit card swipes part of updated UK Monopoly board game

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A new British version of the classic board game Monopoly, known as Monopoly Here & Now, includes updated features such as use of a Visa-imprinted debit card.  The game's mock debit card is inserted into a palm-sized plastic scanner which shows the cash balance of each player, replacing the colorful money that acted as payment in Monopoly games for the past 71 years.

A spokesman for game maker Hasbro Inc. said the substitution of a debit card for cash was part of an effort to show how Monopoly would be if it was designed today, adding that Hasbro noticed the prevalence of debit cards in consumers' wallets.

In addition to the use of plastic, Monopoly Here & Now features updated London addresses, higher property taxes, and "modern" playing pieces such as a cellphone.  And cards that formerly rewarded players for winning a beauty contest now provide them with money for winning a reality TV show.

British Monopoly players will not be alone for long in their use of debit cards.  Hasbro reports that it is planning to roll out the cashless version of the game in the U.S. and Canada in 2007.  Hasbro plans to continue to offer the original cash-based version of Monopoly alongside the newer debit card form of the game.

 

Published: August 22, 2006


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