Monopoly Street Names

Well, certain properties have an edge because of the Chance and Community Chest cards. As I recall, there are cards directing the player to Illinois, the Boardwalk, Reading Railroad (in addition to the advance-to-the-nearest-railroad card) and the nearest utility. There’s no specific card for New York, but one of the Chance cards directs the player to move back three spaces. Of the three Chance spaces on the board, only one has a property three spaces behind it; New York. The others direct you to a Community Chest space and Income Tax.

The main advantage of the orange group, including New York, is that someone getitng out of jail has a 38% chance of landing in the group on his first turn, a 6.2% chance of landing there on his second turn, and a 1.1% chance of landing in the group on his first and second turns, with some small chance of landing there on a third or fourth turn. Thus, if you own the orange group, you’ve got nearly a 50% chance of getting a rent from any parolees.

If I remember right, there’s one that sends you to St. Charles or one of the other light purples, too.

Well that depends on the edition you have. Chance and Community Chest cards have changed slightly through the years and I am not taking “special” editions into account.

You’re right, of course.

In addition, this article, orignally published in the October 1996 Scientific American concludes after mathematical analysis that Jail is the square most likely to be occupied. New York is specifically mentioned as being “the property square [between Go and Indiana Avenue] that offers the quickest break-even point for three houses … about 10 turns” which is useful, I guess, if you can get the oranges, develop them quickly, and give a harsh expensive lesson to recent parolees trying to get back on their feet.

Also from the article, quoting a letter-writer discussing an earlier article:

I feel all vindicated and stuff. I should be writing for SA.

The “move to” cards in the current edition of Monopoly are as follows. The copyright date on the cards is 1996, and there appears to be no change to the cards from the previous standard version except for the typeface, the card stock, and the removal of a cigar from two drawings:

“Advance to Illinois Ave.”
“Take a walk on the Boardwalk- Advance Token to Boardwalk”
“Go Back 3 Spaces” (The only property you could land on with this card is New York Avenue. The other two Chance spaces are three spaces forward from Income Tax and Community Chest)
“Advance to GO (Collect $200)” (I know GO isn’t a property space, but this is just for completion’s sake)
“Advance to St. Charles Place- if you pass GO, collect $200”

Except for “Advance to GO (Collect $200)”, Community Chest has no cards which send a player to a property.

You forgot “Go to Jail, go directly to jail, do not pass go, do not collect $200.” Not a property, of course, but just for the sake of completion.

IIRC, there are two “Go to Jail” cards and two “Advance to Go” cards, one of each in both Community Chest and Chance.

You also forgot the Advance to Nearest Railroad, Take a ride on the Reading Railroad and Advance to Nearest Utility, all of which are properties.

And adding to the value of Jail to the orange group, there’s a card sending the players to St. Charles, with an 11/36 chance of landing in the orange group on his next roll. If the Chance card directing to the player to the nearest utility comes up there’s a two-thirds chance it’ll be Electric Company, with a 14/36 chance of landing in the oranges on the next roll. Take a Ride on the Reading Railroad gives a 2/36 chance of landing in the oranges on the first roll, with decent odds of landing there on second roll (15.6%).

If one wants to get really anal about it (and why the heck not?), an examination of all the Chance and Comunity Chest cards that move the player around shows that the vast majority of them move the player closer to the orange group. Consider the following list:

[list=#][li] (Chance) Advance Token to the Nearest Railroad (2 of these)[/li]li Advance to Go[/li]li Go back 3 spaces[/li]li Advance token to Boardwalk[/li]li Advance to St. Charles Place[/li]li Advance to Illinois Ave.[/li]li Advance token to the nearest utility[/li]li Take a Ride on the Reading[/li]li Go directly to jail[/li][li](Community Chest) Go Directly to Jail[/list][/li]
Now consider the Chance squares as C1, C2 and C3, indicated by their order on the board starting from Go and Community chest as CC1, CC2 and CC3.
[list=#][li]If the player is on C1, he advances to Pensylvania Railroad, which reduces the odds of hitting the orange group (making it impossible to land on St. James, for example). Being on C2 or C3 moves the player closer to the oranges.[/li][li]C1 moves the players away from the oranges, though not by much. C2 and especially C3 move the player closer.[/li][li]C1 and C3 move the player away, but by only a little. C2 puts the player on New York.[/li][li]As with (2), C1 moves the player slightly back, C2 slightly closer and C3 a lot closer.[/li][li]In all cases, closer to the oranges.[/li][li]C1 and C3 moves away from the oranges, C2 slightly closer. This is the only card which has an overall chance of increasing one’s distance from the oranges.[/li][li]C1 and C3 put the player on Electric Company and C2 advances the player to Water Works; in all cases closer to the orange group.[/li][li]C1 moves the player slightly back, C2 and C3 move the player significantly closer.[/li][li]C1 moves the player slightly closer, but being stuck in jail for up to three turns might actually help delay collecting a rent. C2 and C3 move the player closer, but the delay is less significant as it would have taken the player several turns to approach the orange group in any case.[/li][li]CC1 offers a similar delay to drawing the same card on C1, but the real benefit is for a player on CC2 (which is a very safe square as far as the orange group is concerned, with only a 1/36 chance of landing on New York before moving on) to draw this card and thus put in jeopardy again upon release. CC3 offers a significant move closer to the oranges.[/list][/li]
Thus overall, the movement cards in the decks offer a significant edge to the player holding the orange group.

What I meant was that there are no gangsters in the Monopoly game proper (with the possible exception of the guy on the “In Jail” space- Hasbro tells us his name, Jake the Jailbird, but has never said what he’s in for). The people playing it is another story. I’m sure everyone from Donald “Yafiyed” Trump (the king of Modern-Day Atlantic City) to Michael Eisner has played ruthlessly in the Monopoly world before taking on the real one. (Reading Disneywar, Eisner seems to have trouble keeping friends. I imagine a lot of Monopoly games played against him ended with crying and fights.)