The makers of the board game Monopoly are ditching one of the classic tokens in favour of a new playing piece that “reflects the interests of today's players”.
New editions of the family favourite could soon come complete with a robot or a cat, rather than the much-loved Scottie dog or car tokens that players have used for decades.
In an worldwide online vote, fans can choose to get rid of the likes of the thimble or the shoe – objects crafted in the fashion of items familiar to people in 1930s America – while selecting a replacement. A diamond ring, a helicopter and a guitar make up the five pieces in the running to be introduced in July.
“Some of the current tokens date back to the 1930s and are a representation of society at that time,” said Hasbro UK’s marketing director Kay Green. “We felt it was time for an update, to make them more reflective of modern day life and aspirations.”
But the last time the public was offered the chance to vote for a new Monopoly token, in 1999, they chose the sack of money, which no longer comes packaged with today’s editions of the game.
Two-time British Monopoly champion Mike Grabsky welcomed the change: “Whilst it would somewhat sad to see one of the original tokens disappear, it is probably time for an update. Both the hat and the iron in particular never made any sense as a mode of transport to travel around the board with.”
At present, the Scottie dog looks safe with 34 per cent of the vote, as does the car on 16 per cent. But the iron and the wheelbarrow appear to be in danger having secured just six per cent of the vote between them.
Kevin Tostado, director of the documentary Under The Boardwalk: The Monopoly Story, said the changes could prove significant for competitive players. “I’m voting for the iron for strategic reasons: it’s one of the smallest tokens so it’s easier to hide behind hotels.” Mr Grabsky agreed, saying: “[It could be] be advantageous if another player does not notice you coming up to their properties.”