HOW I BECAME A REAL PLAYER OF Monopoly Lifesized IN LONDON
If you are a fan of the Monopoly Board game, then you will be very excited to know that there is a huge version of it in Central London and you can visit to play with your family or friends, no - for real. You can actually play inside the game along with all the tokens, properties and challenges you could face when you usually play it on the table. I decided to go as I have been playing this game since I was a little kid with my grandparents, it was a must at home and it still is actually, so being part of this experience was a must do!
Monopoly Life-sized is an immersive 4D experience, on-your-feet version of the world’s favourite family game brand played on a 15m x 15m life-sized Monopoly board. How cool is that? If you have a spare afternoon (or if you don't) you might as well head over 213-215 Tottenham Court Road, W1T 7PS (nearest tube station: Goodge Street) and have the most fun this winter in London can offer.
The interior of the foyer, dining spaces and cloakroom are decorated with a sense of class and expense which relates to the ongoing Monopoly money making aesthetic which gave me the idea of being part of the game already.
You’re first taken into the lobby of the building where you’re greeted by real-life actors (and this is the part where I started feeling very excited) playing different Monopoly pieces of the board such as the Scottie Dog and the Thimble (all very much invested in their parts acting as helpful guides throughout the game) - even Mr Monopoly makes an appearance and leads the way with an enthusiastic introduction on what to expect and that's where the fun begins. You're then split into teams - my advice? Get involved with other team, it gets more competitive and you can make new friends.
How does the actual game start? It works in a series of turns: Dice Roll Turn and Strategy Turn.
In the Dice Roll turn, two teams got to roll their dice and move around the board. Whatever properties they land on, they get to take on the challenge behind the door. If the property is unowned, it is theirs to keep, and if the property is owned, they’ll have to pay a fine. Meanwhile the other two teams got to take part in a Strategy Turn. In a Strategy turn, a Chance Card is drawn, and then teams have the opportunity to build houses, hotels, or enact special actions against their rivals. I just want to admit that rolling the dices is the most fun yet nerve-wracking moment of the game. You can either win money or face a challenge and could potentially lose money. I don't know why but we played a lot of strategy turns which in my opinion was amazing because we got to experience the game at 360 degrees.
Then, you find yourself fully immersed in the world of Monopoly as you stand on the life size board amongst iconic street names like Tottenham Court Road or Park Lane and there’s even a life size jail cell you all have to clamber inside when you land on the jail square - but the big difference with this board is that you don’t just stand on the squares and pick cards; you actually go inside individual rooms where you compete in escape room style challenges! The feeling of being inside my childhood game left me speechless. From guessing flags to dance challenge, we tried them all! Behind each of the property doors on the Monopoly board is a challenge for you and your team to take on. For this reason no two teams – even playing the same board – will have quite the same experience. The luck of the roll means that each team will land on different property pieces and tackle different challenges. Being under pressure while solving a brain-challenger can be tricky, but rest-assured your Monopoly mascot will not leave you stuck, they offer subtle hints and general direction all throughout the game.
Just like when you play Monopoly at Christmas, the game requires good communication, strategic thinking and of course competitive behaviour. We were a team of 7. Luckly we were all good at most of the challenges we had to face to get to the end but being able to see other teams roll the dice or get sent to jail builds the hunger to win and makes the 75 minute round fly by. The score board is situated in the centre of the board hanging from the ceiling to maximise floor space but to reveal the anticipated winners.
We didn't win the board, you win if you have the most amount of cash and valuable properties combined and we arrived third.
But this is not all, you can also take advantage of the Top Hat Restaurant Bar where you can choose a selection of miniature versions of hearty classics such as THE TOP HAT Roast, Stuffed Pork Belly & Apple Sauce, Wye Valley Lamb with Minted Jus and Fish & Chips, allowing you an opportunity to enjoy all your British favourites in one meal. Desserts continue the sharing theme and feature nostalgic puddings such as Sutton Farm Orchard Crumble, and English Strawberries & Cream Eton Mess as well as the official Monopoly Store where you can grab t-shirts, socks, mugs and the game itself.
Monopoly Lifesized is all about the fun and competitive vibes of the actual game. It’s such a high quality experience. It's worth it and I will definitely go back!
For more info and tickets click here.