World’s Most Popular Board Game Rockets into Space
by Jay Cochran
June 06, 2007
On June 8, MONOPOLY will go where no game has gone before – into space!
Two sets of modernized tokens, or “movers,” featured in Hasbro, Inc.’s MONOPOLY: Here & Now Edition have been approved by NASA to fly aboard the Space Shuttle Atlantis, STS-117. The space-bound MONOPOLY tokens resemble miniature versions of items relevant in the “here and now” including a Toyota Prius, New Balance Shoe, Labradoodle, Motorola Razr cell phone, Laptop Computer, McDonald’s French Fries and an airplane.
MONOPOLY: Here & Now was the first edition of the MONOPOLY game to put a NASA property on a MONOPOLY board. With more than 79 percent of Houston’s total vote, Johnson Space Center was chosen by the American public as the most distinctive landmark in Houston and was given an orange property space on the game board. As a “token” of thanks to the thousands of people who voted for the Space Center, NASA elected to include the Here & Now Edition movers on a space mission and acknowledge the game pieces as “officially flown tokens” when the shuttle returned to Earth.
“Johnson Space Center is honored to have been chosen to represent our city in the MONOPOLY: Here & Now Edition,” said Roger Bornstein, Marketing Director for NASA’s Space Center Houston, the official Visitors Center of NASA's Johnson Space Center. “The flown tokens will become priceless artifacts that will symbolize our partnership with MONOPOLY and serve as a reminder of Houston’s victory in 2006.”
After the STS-117 mission, the MONOPOLY: Here & Now tokens will be returned to Hasbro. One full set of tokens will be exhibited at the Hasbro Games headquarters in East Longmeadow, Mass. The other set of tokens will be divided and given to the companies represented in the game: McDonalds, Toyota, New Balance and Motorola.
“In MONOPOLY’s 72 year history, it has been played in some interesting places – while sitting upside down, on a balance beam and even underwater,” said Matt Collins, Vice President of Marketing for Hasbro Games. “This year, we are fortunate that with MONOPOLY: Here & Now, the game is reaching the final frontier – space!”
Americans cast more than 3 million on-line votes during Spring 2006 to shape the new edition’s game board. The votes determined which landmarks from 22 cities made it onto the board, as well as the location of those landmarks on the board. Beyond the new property landmarks, the game has newly appraised property values and rents, larger currency denominations, and airports replacing the railroad spaces.