Later this year, there’ll be a new version of Monopoly called Monopoly Live that places a 10-inch tower right in the middle of the board. Why? Because that tower controls every aspect of the game: it rolls the dice, it calculates rent, it knows whose turn it is and where your piece is on the board, and knows exactly how much money you have.
There’s no fake paper money anymore, everything is stored on a bank card. There’s no more dice rolling, you cover your dice and the tower will electronically roll for you (complete with sound!). It knows exactly where your piece should go because the tower “bathes the board in infrared light, and a camera can see reflectors placed on each game piece”. The new version of Monopoly also has some new games like a horse race, auctions, a gas tax and the option to upgrade your utilities so they are green. Monopoly Live is supposed to cost $US50 in late 2011. I’m not sure if I’ll be ready for it. [NY Times]