The Monopoly Deal Card game is exciting and fast paced. While there isn’t as much strategy involved as in a chess game, there are some basic ideas and concepts that can really improve your game.
Play Money First
The basic idea behind this strategy is to build up a hedge against the inevitable woes of the game. “It’s My Birthday” and “Debt Collector” played on a single turn early game can obliterate your chances of winning if you lose a bunch of property. Play money before you play property in the early game. There are exceptions, of course, which would involve playing property in order to gather rent. You are still essentially playing money, you are just doing it in a round about way. If you make a play like this, make sure that you are collecting enough rent to protect you from harm. Ideally you want 5M to 7M before playing properties.
Don’t Always Play Three Cards
Monopoly Deal Rules state that players play “UP TO” three cards. You don’t have to play all three cards, so if playing the full three (or even one or two) puts you in a bad position, don’t do it.
Avoid Leaving Complete Sets In Play
This might seem counterintuitive, since you need three complete sets in order to win. However, you have to keep “Deal Breaker” in mind. Losing an entire set in one play will almost certainly ruin your chances of winning. You can play most of a set onto the board, but withhold the completing card in your hand. Another option is to play the full set onto the board using wild cards, but to keep the set broken up by making the wild card part of a different set. Of course, if you are holding two “Just Say No” cards, you could safely play a complete set. You’d just have to hold the JSNs for the Deal Breaker. One JSN isn’t enough, because your opponent could be holding one too.
Use Debt to Acquire Property
Try and play your rent cards, “Debt Collectors” and “It’s My Birthday” cards when you can acquire property. This isn’t always an option, but saving them for an opportune time can result in a devastating blow to your opponent’s game.
Save “Just Say No” Cards for Game Breaking Situations
When you are holding a JSN or two, you may be tempted to use it early when you lose a valuable property or your stack of cash. Just make sure that whenever you use your JSN it is for a game altering situation. There are sometimes points in the game where certain plays are game breaking. You can prevent those plays (or ensure they happen) if you hang onto your JSN cards.
Know How Many of Each Card Are in the Deck
Knowing the deck can give you a significant advantage. For instance, if you know in advance that there are two Deal Breakers in the deck, and one has been played, and one is in your hand, you know that it is safe to play complete sets.
The card breakdown is as follows:
110 Cards Total
4x Rules cards
28x property cards (non wild)
11 x property wild cards as follows:
1x light blue/brown
1x light blue/railroad
1x dark blue/green
2x any color wild card
34 action cards as follows:
2x deal breaker
10x pass go
13 x Rent Cards as Follows:
2x light blue/brown
2x dark blue/green
3x wild rent cards
20x Money Cards as follows:
Check out my Brighthub article for complete Monopoly Deal Rules