Pull up a chair at the board game renaissance

Contemporary settlers of catanvideo games are big, flashy, and all kinds of fun, but sometimes they just can’t compete with a simple roll of the dice.

That’s something more and more gamers are discovering as they rekindle their love of a distinctly analog form of entertainment.

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Here, kitty kitty: Monopoly rolls out its new token

Monopoly monopoly-cat-topfans, make room for your new house pet.

Nearly seven months after winning a worldwide vote, the cat token is finally making its debut in the classic board game. Hasbro has officially begun rolling out the new gamepiece, which will permanently replace the iron token.

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Monopoly is getting rid of jail to woo kids

Just monopoly-jail-top630as Monopoly fans come out of their mourning period for the dearly departed iron game token, Hasbro’s tinkering with the formula again. And purists are likely to be outraged.

A new version of the game, Monopoly Empire, is tailored for the short attention span of today’s youth. Among the changes? Plenty of real world brands to own — and no pesky jail to slow things down.

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The shady origins of five popular board games

Quaker untold-board-game-stories-top640extortionists and Monopoly? The Civil War and The Game of Life? We usually associate board gaming with family time, but several of the most popular games out there have some not-so-family-friendly origins.

So if you’re looking to spark some interesting conversations next time you gather ’round the table for an evening of dice and fake money, here are a few of the lesser known tales of history’s biggest board games.

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Rest in pieces: Hasbro to replace a classic Monopoly game token

In monopoly-token-replacement-top630many families, Monopoly fights start long before the property is purchased. Inevitably, every player wants the same playing piece.

Well, it’s time to stand up for your beloved old boot or Scottie dog or thimble, because Hasbro is aiming to get rid of it.

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Warcraft and Starcraft invade classic board games

Go directly to Azeroth. Do not pass Go. Do not collect 200 gold.

Blizzard Entertainment, having conquered the PC, is now setting its sites on the living room by announcing a partnership Monday with USAopoly to release a World of Warcraft-themed Monopoly game and a Starcraft-focused version of Risk.

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Game Review: Monopoly Collection

There are actually two stories with Monopoly Collection, since the disc contains two complete games. The original Monopoly is a video game version of the classic board game, where players take turns moving pieces around a board and buying property, ultimately trying to be the last player standing. The included “Richest Edition” tosses out the traditional rules and has players exploring various mini-games to earn properties and collect income. The game’s more fun with four human players, but the Wii can fill any empty roles with computer-controlled characters.

Monopoly Streets, the other half of the game, lets you explore the game from a street level view using avatars (including Mr. and Mrs Potato Head). The rules are essentially the same as the classic board game (though you are able to customize your own “house rules”), but rather than watching a shoe hop from space to space from a top-down perspective, you’ll see your avatar explore the 3D streets, houses, and hotels.

Read more at Common Sense Media

Is Boardwalk worth it?

For some families, Monopoly is a bonding experience. For others, it’s a Machiavellian affair that tosses love and loyalty aside in favor of a capitalistic bloodlust where there is but one goal: Drive mom, dad, grandma and weird Uncle Steve into bankruptcy as soon as possible.

But what’s the most efficient way to do that? Everyone has a theory about how best to win at Monopoly. Some try to buy a single property of every color, while others swear that becoming a slum lord, buying up the low rent properties, is the key to victory.

And no matter the strategy, there’s no greater jewel in a player’s crown than Boardwalk. But is that pricey blue spot — and it’s sister street Park Place — really worth it?

Read more at Yahoo! Games