Long Beach-Opoly, a version of Monopoly dedicated to Long Beach, returns to store shelves

VIP Records. The Queen Mary. MOLAA. Jenni Rivera Memorial Park. These are just a few of the prime pieces of real estate one can imaginarily purchase in the Long Beach-Opoly game, a parody of the famed Monopoly board game by Late for the Sky Productions—and after selling out at nearly every Walmart location in the area, the game has returned and is $15 at participating Walmarts, including the location at South Street and Downey Avenue.

Despite its mediocrity as a board game itself—the game is extremely over-simplified and, outside of a few original nods in the contingency cards, lacks the nuances of the original—most are looking to own it because of its nostalgic and kitsch value.

The game company, owned by Bill Schulte, has long been in the business of turning college towns into Monopolys since Schulte created Miamiopoly in 1984 after graduating from Miami University in 1980. The point of the game was simple: pay homage to his alma mater city through the ruthless game that shows the perils and challenges of unhinged capitalism. (No joke: American anti-monopolist Elizabeth Magie created the board game in attempt to be able to educate folks about the dangerous aspect of concentrating private land ownership through monopolies.)

Of course, Schulte was aiming to be more lighthearted. Rather than go to jail, for example, one gets stuck in a traffic jam. (Though there is a funny irony there because, well, it’s not like Long Beach’s jail is ever heavily empty.)

“We’ve grown to 80 different cities since then—and Long Beach, particularly as of late, has been really popular, like Huntington Beach-Opoly,” Schulte said. “Each game is a walk around a specific university and the board spaces are the campus buildings, local businesses and traditions that are special to that school.”

Since Schulte or his crew of 45 workers often don’t have the ability to travel to each city a game is created for, employees often depend on a variety of sources to assure the research is sound. This ranges from corresponding with any given city’s visitors bureau to communicating with locals online.

You can also order it online by clicking here.

Brian Addison is a columnist and editor for the Long Beach Post. Reach him at [email protected] or on social media at FacebookTwitterInstagram, and LinkedIn.

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