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October 9th, 2004
02:15 pm
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Why I don't like games like Monopoly
[World Monopoly Championship chief judge Phil Orbanes] said, "It's like real life: So much of your success depends on how well you get along with the other players and how good you are at persuading them to do something that's in your best interest but not theirs." [link]
People who glorify the zero-sum aspect of competitive games are frustrating enough. People who glorify the zero-sum aspect of competitive games because it reflects their life philosophy are just scary. Life is not a zero-sum game.

Current Mood: cynicalbah.
Current Music: String Cheese Incident, "Land's End"

(3 comments | Leave a comment)

Date:October 11th, 2004 10:44 am (UTC)
Since the bank in Monopoly never runs out of money, and it can add or remove money from the players, Monopoly isn't exactly a zero-sum game either. Though the property acquisition part of it is, I suppose.
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Date:October 17th, 2004 12:27 pm (UTC)
The fact that people follow a life philosophy of zero-sum glorification ARE scary. And the idea that monopoly is about "how good you are at persuading them to do someting that's in your best interest but not theirs" is just frightening. If I had to convince someone that selling their home is in their best interest, I'd do it with some intimidation, not mind games that trick people out of their property.

A World Monopoly Championship? Jeez...
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Date:October 21st, 2004 09:16 am (UTC)

I read that differently.

I wasn't responsible enough to follow the link, however, I read the guy's quote a little bit differently. He doesn't suggest persuading a person to do something that's harmful to them; he says it's not in their best interest.

Let's say I meet you at a gas station; my car is about 15 miles down the road, but in the opposite direction of your travel. I ran out of gas, but I already have a gas can in hand and it's full. All I need is a ride back to my car. If I can convince you to do something that isn't in your best interest -- going 30 miles out of your way to give a guy a lift -- then I can successfully get back to my car and get on my way. By giving me a ride, you're not acting in your own best interest; nor have I convinced you to do something detrimental to your own welfare.

Also, Monopoly doesn't have to be a zero-sum game. Two or three players of equal skill will tend to reach a position of stalemate in which neither player is losing an appreciable amount of resources to any other player, and no player is gaining an appreciable amount of resources over any other player. That also makes it even more of a boring game than it usually is. ;-)
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