Monopoly Scavenger Hunt
This game is a twist on a standard scavenger hunt and uses a Monopoly board (from Hasbro) to
dictate locations to search for items.
The twist from a standard scavenger hunt is that the game is a series of short
bursts of hunting. After this both teams and the banker can still talk and
interact while getting to the next location. This makes the game more social
between teams, and also helps the competitiveness since you can get more immediate
feedback on your competitor's successes at each location.
I created the rules for this scav hunt for a friend's Hen's night and
have participated in this game twice. Once as the banker in London,
and a second time as a participant in Melbourne. From these trial runs I learnt that
people are much happier taking photos of items, rather than collecting them using the
team's money. Also, if you want to go to more places, then you need to shorten the time spent
at each location. The counting of points at the end can take quite some time to sort
out, so be sure to be somewhere comfortable where people don't mind waiting around.
The banker can perhaps start tallying points throughout the game if teams come up and show
What follows is the basics on how you can set up your own Monopoly scav hunt in your
city. This includes what needs to be organised before the appointed day and the before and after
the game starts and finishes on the day. Note that the person who sets up the
game and decides on the item list doesn't have to be the banker, i.e. they can participate
just like a "normal" participant.
Duration of play: 1 to 5hours.
This can be determined before the day, or just whenever participants or banker have had enough.
Number of people: 5 to 30.
- A "banker" is required. This person will sit in one place at each location, will
time the hunting, and will judge the items at the end of the hunting period.
- 2-4 teams of at least 2 people in each team. Teams can be chosen by the participants
or pulled from a hat at the start of the race. Note that I've found that less
teams with more people in each team seems to work better than many small teams.
- If you want more people, then another banker will probably be required to handle
keeping track of points and judging items.
Before the day:
The organiser needs to sort out the following:
- A Monopoly board of your city must be bought,
or created if one doesn't exist. Check on your Monopoly board that the locations
are within some specified distance (perhaps you only want to walk between places). Adjust
the locations to make the playing area suitable to your needs. One option is to
create your own Monopoly board for the scavenger hunt using the online tool and get
it made up and sent to you.
See My Monopoly website.
- A list of items needs to be made, see below for a possible list.
- Choose a set of "special items" that are put in a hat. When starting hunting at
a new location, one of these items is drawn from the hat. The first team
to bring back that item gets extra points.
- A set of generic locations so that participants can have a race to get there
and back. For example, "fire hydrant", "bus stop", McDonald's. Partipants
race to the first one they can find (hopefully within sight of the banker)
and run back. First team to get back gets extra points.
- A location for "jail", somewhere people may not enjoy being.
- Choose a set of trivia questions to be used if you land on "Chance". These can
be your own made up trivia questions, or ones from a Trivial Pursuit board
or wherever you like.
- Choose whether to ask people to bring a small amount of money each for a team budget. This
allows teams to buy items, rather than just photographing or collecting free items.
However, this is optional. You do not need to allocate any budget at all if you
do not want to. If money is included, then all teams should have the exact same budget
so that no team has an advantage.
- Choose participants and decide on number of teams and number of people in each team. On the day to help
people distinguish which team people are in, it's a good idea to use Monopoly colours.
That is, everyone on the "blue" team wears something blue. An easy option to do
this is to buy a few meters of ribbon in different colours, and then get people to
wear the ribbon on their wrist/hair or whatever. If teams are decided before the day, you can
just tell people to wear whichever colour clothes.
- Choose a starting location and time to tell other participants.
- Send out invites to participants. Tell the participants to bring along:
- mobile phone (to make sure you don't loose people);
- digital camera (to take photos of items);
- pen and paper to create items;
- snacks or money to buy food if the game will play over lunch/dinner.
- In addition, the adjudicator will need to have:
- a calculator/pocket spreadsheet tool to tally points;
- watch so that hunting can be timed;
- map of the playing area if it's not obvious where the locations are;
- something to keep them busy while everyone else is off hunting.
- Prizes for winners and runners up.
On the day - Prior to Starting:
Teams need to be finalised, either people choose their own or draw them from a hat.
Then the teams need to be given:
- Item list;
- Team mascot - this is one of the Monopoly tokens that come with the packaged board game.
Teams can choose their own, or draw from a hat.
- If teams are not already colour coordinated, give each team member something to
wear in their team colour (e.g. a piece of ribbon);
- Contact details for other participants/teams.
Playing the Game:
The main game is played as follows:
- Banker rolls the dice to see where to go next on the Monopoly board.
- Everyone goes there together by whatever means the group decides (e.g. walk, tram, train).
- Banker stops once the location is reached and this is the location base.
- Special items are pulled out of a hat - first team to bring them back after the timer starts gets a bonus of 10 points.
- Timer begins.
- Everyone has 15 minutes in the location to find scavenger hunt items.
- Items are things, photos, and activities: as specified in the list.
- 5 point penalty for every minute that any member of a team is late.
- Repeat process.
Extra rules are:
- If a double is rolled, then don't go to that location, keep rolling.
- Three doubles in a row and everyone goes to jail (and do hunt as normal there).
- Breaks allowed when you pass "Go", if you stop on "Free Parking", or after getting out of jail, or whenever the Banker wants to.
- If you land on "Chance", each team is asked questions trivia questions (10 points per correct answer).
- If you land on "Community Chest", then you get an extra 5 minutes of hunting at the next location.
- There will be sprint races to specific points when you land on: "Electricity", "Water Works" and "Tax". 20 points are gained for the first to return from the location given.
- Banker can award bonus points for items that are original or deserving extra in some way
When the time is up, or participants all choose to finish, then everyone should head to
somewhere where they can stay for awhile, e.g. a bar, coffee shop, restaurant, house etc...
To help keep enthusiasm at this point it might be good if one team member is appointed captain
to talk directly with the banker. The banker should call out each item and the teams present
what they have obtained for each item. This way bonuses for the most whatever-est can be
A Possible Item List:
Note that some objects/photos can double as multiple items from the lists.
A single item can count for up to 3 items on the list, provided good reasoning given.
A maximum of 6 items allowed from any one location - to encourage people to continue looking.
Things/Objects: Must be inexpensive/free, can be photos as well. Each item is worth 10 points and
may be worth more with bonuses.
- A NZ coin
- An Australian coin or note that's no longer in use (e.g 1c, 2c, $1note, $2 note) 10
- Something that could be used as a Monopoly piece
- Something in your team's colour
- Something with all 8 Monopoly colours on it
- something to share (10 point bonus if edible)
- Tourist brochure
- Oldest receipt from your wallets (5 point bonus if oldest)
- Flyer for an upcoming event
- Stranger's Business Card
- Free Promotional Pen or other (with company logo on it)
- Five cent stamp
- Bank Deposit Envelope
- Drink coaster
- Good Things
- Small Packages
- Bad taste
- Black and White
Photos: Each worth 10 points, bonus of 5 points if the team's Monopoly piece is in the photo
- Out of place
- In the sky
- House of Worship
- Meaning of life
- Almost empty
- All Grown Up
- At the top
- On the Move
- A stop sign
- Inside an evelvator
These require a group effort or interaction with the public.
These are worth 20 points.
- A piece of paper with lip prints of every team member
- A new cocktail (mocktail) recipe
- A name for your new drink
- 10 funny things you could do for a living (if incomplete list, 2 points for each item)
- 10 places in the world to visit that probably can't be found in a Lonely Planet (if incomplete list, 2 points for each item)
- 10 reasons why purple properties on Monopoly are better than red (if incomplete list, 2 points for each item)
- 10 gadgets that should never have been invented (if incomplete list, 2 points for each item)
- 10 food combinations that are just plain wrong (if incomplete list, 2 points for each item)
- Photo with all team members in it (5 point bonus for tighest squeeze)
- Photo with all team members from a different team
- The least likely place you would find a Monopoly token (5 points bonus for most unlikely)
- Photo of: "I can't believe we all fit in here"
- Funniest story or joke (5 point bonus if about today)
- Brightest piece of clothing on a team member (5 point bonus for brightest)
- Wierdest statue/sculpture (5 point bonus for wierdest)
- Tallest tree (5 point bonus for tallest)
- Longest Limo (or car) (5 point bonus for longest)
- Person with the longest hair (5 point bonus for longest)
- Tallest Person (5 point bonus for tallest)
- Smallest Dog (5 point bonus for smallest)
- Longest Nails (5 point bonus for longest)
- Biggest Feet (5 point bonus for biggest)
- Person wearing the Most Rings (5 point bonus for most number)
- Person wearing the Highest Heels (5 point bonus for highest)
- Strangest form of transport (5 point bonus for strangest)