Easy Money (board game)
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Somerville Industries Ltd.
|Publication date||1935, 1936, 1940s, 1950s, 1974, 2005|
|Years active||1935-1974, 2005|
|Random chance||High (dice rolling, card drawing)|
|Skill(s) required||Negotiation, Resource management|
Easy Money was a board game introduced by Milton Bradley Company in 1935. The game is based on The Landlord's Game as is Monopoly in the movement of pieces around the board, the use of cards, properties that can be purchased, and houses that can be erected on them.
Easy Money is among the Landlord's Game/auction family of games which also includes Monopoly. Players begin with a set amount of money. Properties allow owners to charge rents based on the houses purchased on that property. Players may trade or sell properties. Other spaces have particular action that must be taken when landing on or passing over.
A game of Easy Money ends when a player is not able to pay what they owe, and had sold or mortgaged all of their properties. The cash-on-hand of each player, plus the value of each property owned (and not mortgaged) was the player's net worth and determined the winner.
Games can last several hours.
Milton Bradley Company (MB) was one of the companies that Charles Darrow showed his Monopoly in 1934, but was turned down. After the success of Monopoly and Finance, Milton Bradley decided to issue its own version of Finance. Despite the Landlord's Game patents having expired and the auction monopoly developing in the public domain, Parker Brothers sued Milton Bradley for patent infringement, and the latter was forced to license the former's patents to continue production of the game. MB was forced by Parker Brothers to make changes for its 1936 "New Improved Edition" issued in three separate versions. A design patent for Easy Money was applied for at the Patent Office and was either withdrawn or rejected.
A new board was made for the 1940s edition with a new box design in the 1950s. A final Milton Bradley edition was printed in 1974. An unrelated game with the same game was issued by Hasbro in 1996. In 2005 under license from Hasbro, Winning Moves republished the 1950s version with new property names.
 * non-property spaces
From 1935 to 1936 editions:
- Give or Take space removed - Instead, if a double (e.g. 5 and 5) was thrown, the player took a "give-or-take" card.
- deeds removed with the colored houses representing ownership & property information directly on the board