Tuesday, January 29, 2008

MONOPOLY FANS VOTE TO DETERMINE WHICH GREAT GLOBAL CITIES WILL BE FEATURED ON FIRST WORLDWIDE MONOPOLY EDITION GAME BOARD

With the roll of the dice, will aspiring capitalists soon be able to own and unify Washington, D.C., Moscow and Beijing? Will Boston and Bogotá become next-door neighbors? And will Lady Luck smile more on Las Vegas than on London?

Beginning today (1/21/08), MONOPOLY fans around the globe will have the chance to vote to determine which great global cities will be on the game board of the first-ever worldwide MONOPOLY edition. Fans visiting www.monopoly.com will have the opportunity to select from more than 68 ‘candidate cities’ from six continents that run the alphabetical gamut from Amsterdam to Zurich. The United States has six candidates on the ballot: Boston, Chicago, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, New York City and Washington, D.C.

The 20 cities earning the most votes will automatically win a spot on the new MONOPOLY Here & Now: The World Edition game board and will be placed on the game board in rank order from highest rent property to lowest rent property. So as the election begins, pundits may ponder whether Oslo, Tokyo, or Toronto -- or another great global city -- will claim the coveted spot traditionally occupied by Boardwalk. Others may wonder if wintry Montreal will cozy up next to warm weather Rio de Janeiro and be neighbors on the board. And there’s always the possibility that former political foes will find themselves as friendly members of the same property group.

Fans may cast votes for up to 10 of the “candidate cities” each day from now until Feb. 28, 2008. To facilitate voting for MONOPOLY fans worldwide, the website is available in more than 30 languages.

While the ballot of candidate cities attempts to capture the greatest cities on the planet, game maker Parker Brothers acknowledges that some fans may feel that their favorite city didn’t make the list. Fortunately, fans visiting www.monopoly.com can nominate virtually any city on Earth via a wild card (a.k.a. write-in) vote component on the website. Then, beginning Feb. 29, 2008, the top 20 most nominated wild card cities will compete in a one-week face-off for the opportunity to be featured as one of the two members of the “low rent” property group, traditionally home to Baltic Avenue and Mediterranean Avenue. This means the new game board may feature property spaces representing Paris, France AND Paris, Texas. Or Kalamazoo could become a worldwide household name if it joins the board alongside such famous cities as Sydney and Cairo.

“MONOPOLY is the world’s most popular board game and transcends cultural barriers,” said Helen Martin, Global Brand Leader for toy and game-maker Hasbro, Inc.’s (NYSE: HAS) MONOPOLY brand. “More than 750 million people around the world have played MONOPOLY since the game was introduced nearly 75 years ago and it remains a perennial favorite among today’s adults, kids and families.”

Along with the 22 property spaces featuring great cities from around the world, the game’s traditional “railroad” spaces will be modified to highlight four types of transportation used by people around the globe: land, sea, air and space travel. The game will also feature modern-day scenarios on the Chance and Community Chest cards.

The MONOPOLY Here & Now: The World Edition game board will be unveiled in August 2008 and the game will go on sale in September 2008 in 45 countries.

The 68 cities nominated for the global vote include the following:

Amsterdam
Athens
Barcelona
Beijing
Belgrade
Berlin
Bogotá
Boston
Bratislava
Brussels
Bucharest
Budapest
Buenos Aires
Cairo
Cape Town
Caracas
Cardiff
Chicago Copenhagen
Dubai
Dublin
Edinburgh
Frankfurt
Helsinki
Hong Kong
Istanbul
Jerusalem
Kiev
Kuala Lumpur
Las Vegas
Lisbon
Ljubljana
London
Los Angeles
Lyon
Madrid
Melbourne
Mexico City
Montreal
Moscow
Mumbai
Munich
New York
Oslo
Paris
Prague
Queenstown
Riga
Rio de Janeiro
Rome
Santiago
Seoul
Shanghai
Singapore City
Sofia
St. Petersburg
Stockholm
Sydney
Tallinn
Tokyo
Toronto
Vancouver
Vienna
Vilnius
Warsaw
Washington, D.C.
Zagreb
Zurich


For more than 70 years, Parker Brothers selected elite locations within each country to place on MONOPOLY game boards. Recently, Parker Brothers invited fans of the game to help update the board in their respective countries to reflect what the game board would look like if it were created today instead of in 1935. The votes resulted in Here & Now editions of the game in each country. In 2006, more than 3 million votes were cast for the U.S. MONOPOLY: Here & Now Edition which features New York City’s Times Square and Boston’s Fenway Park on the high-rent spaces traditionally home to Boardwalk and Park Place.

Since 1935, more than 250 million copies of MONOPOLY have been sold in 103 countries and 37 languages. More than 200 different editions of the game have been published, but the most popular continues to be the classic "Number Nine." Affectionately known by its original product number, "Number Nine" is based on the streets of Atlantic City and is nearly identical to Charles Darrow's original submission to Parker Brothers. The MONOPOLY name and logo, the distinctive design of the game board, the four corner squares, the MR. MONOPOLY name and the character, as well as each of the distinctive elements of the board and playing pieces are trademarks of Hasbro for its property trading game and game equipment. © 2008 Hasbro, All Rights Reserved.

Hasbro is a worldwide leader in children's and family leisure time entertainment products and services, including the design, manufacture and marketing of games and toys ranging from traditional to high-tech. Both internationally and in the U.S., its PLAYSKOOL, TONKA, MILTON BRADLEY, PARKER BROTHERS, TIGER and WIZARDS OF THE COAST brands and products provide the highest quality and most recognizable play experiences in the world.

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