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Original Monopoly now available from EA for the iPhone / iPod touch

If an angry, perspiring Steve Ballmer took over control of my iPhone and said I could only have one third-party app on it, I know which app I'd keep. EA's Monopoly Here and Now: The World Edition [US$4.99, iTunes Link] has been my favorite game on the iPhone since it first appeared. Just how much am I addicted to this game? I've played 272 games against three other AI players. At about 45 minutes per game, that's almost nine days of my life that I've spent enjoying Monopoly on my iPhone.

There was always one thing that bothered me about The World Edition: that it wasn't the game I remembered as a child. It uses cities from all over the world, from Gdynia to Montreal, transportation modes from rail to space instead of the four classic railroads, and had some other rule changes that were different.

EA just made my day, since they recently released Monopoly [US$4.99, iTunes Link], and this one is the original classic game. It uses all those streets in or around Atlantic City, N.J. like Baltic Avenue and Park Place, has the four original railroads, and seems to follow the original rules more closely.

Like The World Edition, you play against real or computerized opponents. For real opponents, Monopoly now provides Bluetooth play against up to two other players, or Wi-Fi play against up to three other players. My wife and I found the Wi-Fi play of the World Edition to be a huge battery hog; we'll be trying out the Bluetooth option soon.

The original Monopoly board game was a perennial stocking stuffer when I was a kid, and now the classic Monopoly for iPhone and iPod touch is sure to make a great gift for someone you love.

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