Monopoly is a game of buying, renting, and selling property. The aim of the game is to make profits and increase your wealth while bankrupting your opponents. A player loses and exits the game when they become bankrupt, and the last remaining player or the wealthiest becomes the winner.
Monopoly is a real estate board game played ideally by between two and eight players. However, you can play with as many people as you want. Nonetheless, most people prefer a four player set. Official Monopoly tournaments typically have four players per game.
Monopoly can be played by virtually any number of players at the same time. Nonetheless, if you have too few players or too many players you’re bound to run into problems. There are many versions of the game, both board games and online games. Selecting a suitable version for the number of players is important.
How Number of Players Affects the Monopoly Game
Having a high number of players can make the game unmanageable. Additionally, too many players lead to squabbles over rules. The banker may also lose track of property, ownership, and mortgages. When the players are too few, the game might lose some of its fun aspects. The number of players can affect the game in several ways:
If you’re a stickler for Monopoly official rules you might get frustrated at too many players coming up with their own rules or flippantly disregarding the set rules. It becomes tougher working against the majority, especially if they’re wrong.
An average game of monopoly should last between 45 and 60 minutes. When it’s only two players, the game should end quicker. If you have more than four players, the game can last up to 90 minutes. When there are more than seven players, the game could take more than three hours.
In Monopoly, you’re all racing to buy property and developments. When there’s too many players it becomes difficult for any one person to purchase all the property in a given color group. You can’t erect houses, hotels, or railroads when you don’t own the monopoly on a color group.
When there’s too many players, each player has a decreased chance of owning property. This increases the probability that with each dice roll you’ll end up on someone else’s property and have to pay rent.
Thus, you’d rather spend time in jail than keep paying rent every time you move. When in jail, you decrease your chances of running bankrupt before your opponents. However, your prolonged jail time takes away from the joy of being an active player in the game.
What’s the Ideal Number of Players in Monopoly?
The official Monopoly tournaments typically have four people playing each game. Four is the most preferred and ideal number of players. A Monopoly game with three or two players can be fun too but may lack some balance. It is easier for two players to conspire to bankrupt one. It is also easier for two players to keep changing the rules to suit their cards rather than follow official rules.
While it is possible to play with two people, the game is likely to drag too long. This is because there will be fewer trades. Also, it soon becomes apparent who the likely winner is, so the other player will be taking desperate measures to stay in the game as long as possible.
Additionally, in many cases, both players remain in the game with lots of cash and assets. Thus, both players’ assets keep growing and growing to a point where it seems none of the two can win the game.
It can also be fun playing five or six players at the same time. However, as the number increases, it becomes more difficult to manage play. Also, with too many players on board, the game would involve too many trades and the game would take too long to end.
Best Monopoly Version for Different Number of Players
There are several versions of the Monopoly game. Each version is more suitable for different circumstances. As such, every version works best for a particular number of participants. Some examples include:
Monopoly Mega Edition
This version of Monopoly is ideal when playing with more than six people at the same time. The board is 50% larger than the original game and has nine additional properties to trade in. In addition to houses and hotels, you can also erect skyscrapers that attract even higher rent.
Monopoly Rivals Edition
If you want a speedier game for two people, then the Rivals Edition could be the solution. The game has a smaller board. There are no hotels and the cash only comes in 50- and 100-dollar denominations.
Online Monopoly Plus
You can play two to six people on the online version, Monopoly Plus. The game is available on Windows PC, Xbox, and PS4.
Monopoly Player Roles
When there are less than five players, one player takes on the role of the banker or treasury. If there are more than five players, the banker can be strictly a regulator and not a player.
When the game begins, each player picks a token and one player becomes the banker. The banker then distributes $1,500 to each of the players. Each player receives two $500 bills, two $100 bills, two $50 bills, six $20 bills, five $10 bills, five $5 bills, and five $1 bills.
Each player rolls the dice. Whoever rolls the highest number goes first, followed by the second highest, then the third-highest, and so forth.
Each player moves clockwise around the board from the ‘GO’ square. Each move corresponds with the number the player rolls on the dice. When you land on a space, you are entitled to purchase it if it doesn’t have an owner. You can bid on properties in auction and mortgage of your property. You have to pay rent on properties your opponent owns.
Thus, with more players, you’re more likely to be landing quite often on other people’s property.