Monopoly Rules

I don’t care, I love it. There is nothing like creating the microcosm of capitalist London and re-enacting its rise and fall 'til 4am in the morning surrounded by spilt gin, frayed tempers and fraught friendships. Here are The Chic Alors Rules to one of my favour wastes of time. Monopoly.

House Rules

You need to set these out before you start. All fines go in the centre and are picked up by the person landing on Free Parking. Three doubles and you go directly to jail, where you can’t collect rent. Deals can only be made on your go. Unasserted payments may go unpaid if not asked for before the next players go. You can’t buy property on the first lap. Toilet breaks and drinks top ups have to either halt play or include rent amnesties.

Choose a piece carefully

Even the most hardened cynical will work under the misguided impression that your playing piece will help shape your destiny or that it represents your personality. Presumably this is why Hasbro are phasing out the iron and replacing it with a cat.

Winners take it all

The key to win this game is to keep hold of enough money to cover rent stings, while recklessly buying up everything you can. The less players, the less picky your spending should be. Once you get hold of a whole neighbourhood, gentrify the place quicker than you can say Costa Coffee. Unless you’ve got Old Kent Road.

Bank honestly, cheat slyly

Unlike real life, banking is sacred. You can steal money from people when they go to the toilet, short change them and strike horrendously exploitative deals when they can’t cough up - but the bank needs to remain legit. And in view of all players. Once this golden rule is in place, cheating is an art. You have to do it subtly and complicitly with other players (there is little point in cheating if you’re playing with just two, as you’re only undermining the satisfaction of beating them). These hardest and most common cheat is skipping rent. You have to breezily urge the next player to take their turn without drawing attention to the board, or rush them while someone is tweeting. It’s usually the silence that gives you away.

Inevitable strops

That moment when you’re paying an oligarch £750 for a couple of shitty houses in some buttfuck part of town and your inner 4-year-old has a massive hissy fit and pays it all in screwed up £1 notes thrown into their face. Then you land on the GO DIRECTLY TO JAIL corner and you want to flip the board upside down. Jail is an opportune drink fixing moment.

Get an Old Style Board from a charity shop / relative / etc.

The disappointment inherent in the new editions is endless. But here’s five annoyances about the standard edition. 1! The board folds into four. This means the pieces are often hanging over Fenchurch Street Station, and certain streets with have an awkward incline. 2! The £500 notes are basically the same colour as the £100 ones. 3! The Chance and Community Chest cards are flimsy and not yellow and pink. So the blue chance question mark is confusing after you’ve been playing for 4 hours and are on your third Crème de menthe. 4! “Speed” “die” which confound the game’s greatest strength. That it takes fucking ages. 5! There aren’t enough houses and hotels to go on all the properties.

ENJOY! And remember, don't start playing unless you have atleast 4 hours to kill, ideally pencil in 6 with snacks and booze.