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Pinball / Monopoly

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Own it all.
"Be a tycoon... like me!"
Uncle Pennybags

Monopoly is a 2001 pinball machine released by Stern, designed by Pat Lawlor and his crew at Pat Lawlor Design. Based on the classic board game, it contains several elements from its source, altered to fit the new medium. The main goal is to progress around the board by shooting certain shots, stopping to buy property, while ultimately becoming rich enough to own it all.

The machine has several notable features, such as a rotating flipper on the far right that often screws with the ball’s path and a mini-dot matrix display.

In November 2001, Stern Pinball and Pinball Sales auctioned off 40 "Platinum Edition" games on eBay for the nonprofit charity Boundless Playground. These tables had chrome trimmings signed by Pat Lawlor, John Youssi, and Gary Stern, along with a backbox translite autographed by Lawlor, Youssi, Stern, Pinball Sales president Jack Guarnieri, and Hasbro CEO Alan Hassenfeld. The production run of 40 was chosen as one for each space on the Monopoly board.

This pinball machine proves examples of:

  • All Your Base Are Belong to Us: Said word-for-word in an Easter Egg, but doesn't actually happen (unless you count the properties ,of course.).
  • Announcer Chatter: Uncle Pennybags chats quite a bit during gameplay.
  • The Big Race: One mode has you (as Uncle Pennybags in the car token) racing against the dog token. Shooting any target moves you up, and a "power-up" is obtainable that skips you ahead quite a bit.
  • Developer's Foresight: During the "token race" mode (where the player races the dog token), if you enter the Electric Company upkicker shot beneath the dot-matrix ticker, the main DMD will show the dog getting electrocuted, while it yelps in pain.
  • Easter Egg:
    • Among others, pressing 11L, 1R, 10L, 1R, 5L, 1R, 14L, 1R on the flippers gives a picture of a paperboy with an extra edition, along with the text “ALL YOUR BASE ARE BELONG TO US”.
    • Between games, the playfield LED shows numerous ticker messages (over a hundred), many with various jokes. (See them here.)
      Make new friends... then beat them playing MONOPOLY...
  • Extra! Extra! Read All About It!: Shouted during certain Chance cards.
  • Limited Special Collector's Ultimate Edition: The Platinum Edition.
  • Match Sequence: Uncle Pennybags slams his fist on the table, causing two nearby dice to pop up and display the number.
  • Mythology Gag:
    • You begin the game with 1,500 points, much like how you begin a game of Monopoly with $1,500.
    • Getting a high score requires both your initials and a choice of game token.
    • The ticker messages provide several allusions to Pat Lawlor's previous tables.
    "Become Lost in a Zone – Play Pinball."
    "The ELECTRIC COMPANY keeps the Bank safe from Safe Crackers."
    • During Utility Overload, when the ball is bounced around the Electric Company pop bumpers, Mr. Monopoly will sometimes say "Feel the power!" That phrase has been used in quite a few other Pat Lawlor tables; this might be one of its' most literal uses.
  • Pooled Funds: Done frequently in the display animations.
  • Progressive Jackpot: Every time the Free Parking target up the side ramp is hit, it adds 5,000 points to the value of Free Parking, which starts at 100,000 and grows from game to game. You can only earn that value when you start Free Parking Multiball, which can only be obtained from a Chance card (or possibly from landing on Free Parking with the Roll and Collect).
  • Shout-Out: One Easter Egg contains the infamous line from Zero Wing.
  • Skill Shot: Short-plunge to shoot the Water Works saucer for an increasing number of points. The mini-flipper will also get progressively faster each time it is made.
    Uncle Pennybags: "Very skillful!"
  • Spectacular Spinning: The spinning flipper near the Water Works.
  • Spelling Bonus: B-A-N-K starts Cash Grab, and A-B-C collects a bonus.
  • Spiritual Successor: The playfield layout and general rules (especially those pertaining to multiball) are highly reminiscent of Whirlwind.
  • Timed Mission: Several modes. "Land Grab" allows you to get more time added to the clock.
  • Title Theme Drop: The Attract Mode theme plays during mulitball.
  • Wizard Mode: While the main goal is to “own it all”, “Land Grab” has several aspects that qualify it as this. It’s a timed four-ball multiball that can only be obtained after getting all the property groups and railroads.
    Uncle Pennybags: “Owning property never goes out of style.”

Uncle Pennybags: "Buh-bye now!"