Sun City is the priciest place to live in the West Valley, or so says a new game modeled after the Parker Brothers classic Monopoly.
The Arizona Regional Multiple Listing Service has just released ARMLS-opoly, a game that has its players collect $200 when they pass go, pay rent to other players — or perhaps even go bankrupt.
But don’t look for Marvin Gardens or Boardwalk. The ARMLS version replaces the well-known game properties with Valley cities.
The organization created the game for its 30th anniversary. Staff members spent months working out every detail, said Chris Heagerty, ARMLS director.
“We wanted it to have a long shelf life,” she said. “We wanted it to have something that would be interactive, and we wanted it to be fun.”
The West Valley is well-represented on the board: Peoria, Glendale, Surprise all have spaces. Even Sun City has its own tile. Peoria and Surprise cost $140 each, while Glendale costs $160. Sun City is the most expensive at $180.
The prize positions on a standard Monopoly board, Park Place and Boardwalk, are replaced by Scottsdale, $300, and Paradise Valley, $400, The first — and cheapest — space is Apache Junction at $60. It’s followed by Queen Creek, which is also $60 in the game even as real Queen Creek housing is substantially more expensive than Apache Junction.
The placement of cities is only somewhat reflective of housing prices, Heagerty said. ARMLS grouped cities that are geographically close to each other next to each other on the board.
Some other changes include the four railroads being replaced by the Valley’s four regional realty associations. Community Chest and Chance are substituted with real-estate related prizes or penalties, such as “Family dog escapes during showing — pay $200.”
ARMLS had to create every detail of the game, including graphics, before having a vendor start production on 250 copies. The organization looked at several online vendors who made custom Monopoly games, finding the price and quality varied.
“We had one made, and it wasn’t the quality that we wanted to last,” Heagerty said. “We really went top of the line because we wanted it to be something that people could keep.”
Heagerty said she’s not aware of any other real estate listing services that have customized the game. They might consider doing it now, though, as Hagerty said she never imagined the idea would grab so much attention.
“The interest people have shown in the game just has me flabbergasted,” she said. “I mean, go figure.”
ARMLS has given away some games as prizes and has heard from some real estate agents who want to buy a copy. The listing service will consider making more games if demand warrants, Heagerty said.
ARMLS will sell copies for $40, which she said doesn’t cover production costs.
“We’re not really looking to make money from it,” she said. “We’re just looking to celebrate our 30th anniversary.”
For information, call 480-921-7777.
Jeff Dempsey contributed to this report.