A new game called Co-opoly is in the works.

This board game resembles monopoly in its bare-bones objective: to succeed in business. However, rather than players competing to earn the most money, players must work together to win the game. “Everyone wins – or everybody loses,” the game advertises.

Unlike Monopoly, which encourages an ultra-competitive attitude and is the source of numerous fights amongst friends and family members, Co-opoly teaches about the value of collaboration and solidarity, still through a hands-on economic model role-playing game accessible to children and adults.

As Co-opoly’s founders explain:

Cooperatives are not a form of charity, they are a means of self-help and solidarity…By playing Co-opoly, players will learn about the unique benefits, challenges, and operations of the cooperative world – as well as the skills needed to participate in a co-op!

Co-opoly is being advertised on Kickstarter, a new online forum where individuals can promote their projects and solicit donations.

On Kickstarter, anybody can pledge money to a project, but the project will not receive any of the money unless it reaches its full fundraising goal by a certain date. Co-opoly’s creators, The Toolbox for Education and Social Action, are asking for $8,800 by October 2nd.

I’m a big believer in the abilities of games to teach important life skills. There are a lot of interesting articles on why gaming can be good for educational purposes.

Escapist Magazine, referred to me by a fellow Brandeisian, has a good video on how interactive games can better be utilized in the classroom, and the Christian Science Monitor discusses a UN-program for college students in Vermont to bring attention to domestic violence for South African youths through cell phone games.

Check out the Social Justice games category for more games and their social justice analyses!

8 comments on “A More Cooperative ‘Monopoly’”

  1. Nipun Marwaha Says:

    This will be such a flop. The only people that will buy it are school districts that are mandated by liberal boards to create an artificially fair environment. It sounds like they stole this idea for the book 1984 by George Orwell. I get that you should teach kids all that “sharing and caring” stuff but come on!!! This is nothing if not promoting socialism and there are better ways to teach people to learn to play together… idk maybe team sports where people use what they are good at for the benefit of the team. Competition is capable of breeding unity as well as efficiency and productivity and definitely innovation. Honestly it is my honest belief that if “social Justice” numb skulls have there way we will bring about the downfall of this country.

  2. Nat Says:

    ahaha nipun you are the most willfully stupid person i’ve ever had the misfortune to meet

  3. elly Says:

    Comments which attack people and do not add anything to the conversation are not appreciated, Nat. We’d rather create a productive discussion or debate than insult individuals, especially ones who read our blog. Comments like this will be moderated in the future.

  4. Nat Says:

    Okay. Let’s do this. Nipun has been repeatedly hostile and disrespectful in comments on this blog regarding transgender advocacy and gender expression. Ultimately those comments were far harsher than anything I’ve ever posted. The fact that I was censured means that you basically take your role as an ally as something to include on your resume rather than as something serious. Those comments are not appreciated by anyone who takes a real interest in the needs of transgendered people, let alone transgendered people themselves, who eat enough shit constantly, every day, and deserve far more compassion than Nipun shows. If you cared you’d ultimately have made a stronger case that comments like that are not acceptable. Until you do that, this blog will not be a safe space.

  5. Nat Says:

    But sure. I’m a social justice numbskull. You do realize, Nipun, that Orwell was a Trotskyite who advocated repeatedly for the nationalization of industries which were important to the general welfare.
    Or furthermore that the whole concept of the game “Monopoly” is anathema to the idea of a hypercompetitive capitalist state, given that the objective of that game is to literally eliminate one’s competition. No innovation takes place in Monopoly, rather, the player acts as a rent-seeking landlord who profits entirely on the misfortune of others. The player is funded entirely from passing go. The source of this income is unknown. It is likely from the peasants the player doesn’t even bother to think of. Ultimately the game is probably a far better model of how a capitalist society actually works than Nipun’s ideal.
    Adam Smith had some rather unkind words for landlords.

  6. Nat Says:

    Cooperation is deeply necessary for all aspects of human life. Bacteria even display complex systems to enable cooperation and ensure that altruism is not taken advantage of. Ultimately, the success of the human endeavor that is our collective existence as a species will depend to a large degree on our ability to cooperate with one another instead of our willingness to exploit one another.
    I’d love to hear a reason why competition and not coooperation fosters innovation that doesn’t hinge on a faith that nears religious.

  7. elly Says:

    Thanks for all your responses, Nat.
    I think you raise really good points. This is the conversation I’d rather my posts spark, instead of attacks on individuals. I think your analysis of Monopoly is very spot on.

    While people may post comments which are offensive or inflammatory, as long as they are critiquing the post/topic rather than aimed at individual commenters, they will usually fall within the category of protected free speech, which we like to honor. However, is our aim for readers to feel safe to post on this site, so I am open to hear more about why you do not feel it is fulfilling this goal at the moment, if you want to discuss it.

  8. Nat Says:

    If you think that upholding some vague ideal of free speech is more important than making sure that transgendered individuals don’t have to read hostile comments on a so-called progressive blog then you’re hardly an ally at all.

    Nipun’s right to post hate speech should never eclipse the right of transgendered people to feel comfortable with themselves and not to have to read insulting remarks which are tacitly approved by the editorial staff here. There are plenty of places where Nipun’s statements would be considered appropriate but this should not be one of them. He wasn’t making anything close to a political argument, he was contending that transgendered people are mistaken about their gender identity (and this is a very generous reading of what he said) and if you don’t understand why this trope is deeply offensive to transgendered individuals I honestly don’t know what to say.

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