Just for clarification in my youth I've played at least some hundred Monopoly games, then I had a friend who did the chamionship circuit (in europe) and he needed good opponents so I played some with him. Did play a short while when it popped up as online multiplayer because of some friends who wanted to.
But from the perspective of all the really good games that have come out in the last decade it just boggles me that Monopoly still is a big seller. If it had been a new release in todays market it wouldn't even make a ripple.
Regarding Monopoly...little to no strategy...It doesn't even scale well with 5 or 6 players, instead its rather the opposite. Since the resources stay the same its just even worse case of blind luck gives the winner in 2h then you gotta play for another 10h to actually win.
The strategy is all in the deal-making (and knowing what properties' relative worths are).
While I understand what you are saying, that is not strategy for me; maybe a compromise would be to call it tactics.
For me that stuff is more rote memorization. There is almost nil decision making. Just lots of improbabilities and contingencies. As for the trading, the more pro you go the less trading there is, look at the different championships, the only time there are lots of trades is if there are newbies. Otherwise its almost exclusively between #2 and #3.
Including auctions reduces the role luck plays in acquiring good properties...
I disagree from memory, but it was like 10 years since my last non-internet game so I could be wrong. IIRC there is never any incentive not to buy property, this due to the mortgages. The only time I've seen an auction in the championships was against newbies where the champ wanted someone to spend too much at the start, which was a gamble that worked.
One way to counter that is to conduct a blind, single-round auction to determine who goes first. If you really want to go first, you'd better be prepared to pay for it.
While I like it, not even the world championships do that.
What we did to get a better starting spread would be to have the three first rounds with a d12. That greatly reduces the walking in someone elses footprints - Im shit out of luck - scenarios. It would also remove the double-double glory start.
I've heard of a variant where you take two Monopoly boards and overlap them at the Free Parking square...
Tried it, didn't work. This just makes the game longer not more fair. However it does increase the number of auctions so if you like those you should try it. What happens is that you run out of money before you get sets of properties, so the build is much slower, then its harder to get full sets even if you have the money.
I don't think a game using sensible rules should last more than two hours...
On the computer or at some autistic championships I'd agree but among friends in real life, how do you get it below two hours?
Our games would drag a lot, especially with kingmaker stuff where those who couldn't possibly win would prop up #2 or #3 to make sure #1 wouldn't get away with an easy victory.
I think I've played around around half of the Top 100 boardgames in that site, so if any of you have questions about a particular boardgame, chances are I've played it and I can give recommendations on whether or not a boardgame is good for you.
But I don't trust boardgamegeek by the way and are sceptical of those who do. The most glaring thing would be that Sid Meier's Civilization (boardgame) had 9s and 10s for four-five weeks from people who claimed to have played it. That game was sooo broken you had to invent new game pieces, a new turn order plus modify the techs to get it to semi-work.
If a site should be mentioned it should be http://www.brettspielwelt.de
where you can play top quality games online for free.
...I played few games of Small world which seems to be very popular this year (I saw three games going on at once).
Love brittania lite. But how come it was popular this year, is there a new expansion I've missed?
I also played Cash'N'Guns a simple and very fun game, sort of resevour dogs the game.
Really good easy going game. Really fun at conventions when everyone is too tired to play something big.
Robo rally was also quite fun, its funny to see how many great plans fail because people forget their left from their right.
Really like the new edition pieces and boards.
My family was introduced to Settlers of Catan when we visited Germany a few years ago. Since then we've had fun playing and introducing it to others. It's easy enough to pick up on. (though I can't count the number of times someone got stuck with "you can't place the village there, it's one space away from another)
So many couples got mad at eachother over settlers that we've had to ditch it in our circle. Nowadays I only play it in tournaments. This since half the game as you say is cutting someone off so they are stuck in shithole creek.