Visa card in board game: Learning credit responsibility
The latest version of Hasbro's long-running "Game of Life" board game will feature Visa credit cards in place of paper money.
Visa and toymaker Hasbro have partnered to introduce the Game of Life: Twists and Turns Edition in the summer of 2007. In the game, players will be given a toy Visa credit card which they will insert into an electronic "LifePod" to keep track of the "life points" earned as they play the game. The winner will be the player who earns the most cash and life experiences, like having a child or making an invention.
The Game of Life, introduced in 1960, lets players move along a simulated path from high school to retirement, making decisions about education, work, insurance and investments while experiencing milestones like marriage and children while dealing with taxes, homeownership and medical emergencies.
Hasbro explained that the flagship version of its Game of Life has been updated many times over the years to make sure the game remains up-to-date with modern life. The new edition of the game was designed to reflect the way transactions between consumers and merchants now take place.
The game will also provide players with greater options, which have been set around the themes of "live it, love it, learn it and earn it."
However, critics charge that the update will undo the game's wise lessons on money, while introducing young children into the buy-now-pay-later world of credit card purchases.
Still, Visa said the game lets players learn how electronic payments are made in everyday life. Visa defended the money lessons of the new Game of Life, saying that in order to win, players need to accumulate the most points -- which cannot be accomplished if they spend beyond their means.
The Game of Life update supports the Visa tag line, "Life Takes Visa."
Hasbro will still market the old game. Visa plans to include money management booklets with the latest version. A booklet entitled "Practical Money Skills For Life Brochure" will accompany the money tips that will be incorporated into the game's strategy.
Visa debit cards have already replaced money in the UK version of Monopoly.
Published: May 10, 2007
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