Monopoly says RIP to the thimble, boot and wheelbarrow

Monopoly tokens are getting their biggest shakeup yet.

Board game Monopoly is adding three new tokens: A T-Rex, a rubber ducky and a penguin.

They will join the Scottie dog, top hat, car, battleship and cat in the next generation of the game, which means the thimble and the boot – Monopoly tokens since the game’s inception in 1935 – and the wheelbarrow, which was added in the early 1950s, are being forced into retirement.

That’s because the brand let fans vote on the tokens in an upcoming update. According to a rep, participants from 146 countries cast 4.3m votes from January 10 to 31. The new tokens were three of 64 contenders, which also included a trumpet, a roller skate, a cowboy boot and a bow tie.

The T-Rex garnered the second most votes of any token. The rubber ducky came in fifth place, followed by the penguin at seventh. The Scottie dog received the most votes overall.

Monopoly said the success of some tokens can be attributed to brands campaigning for them, like car sharing service Zipcar, which rallied to keep the car by “tweeting playful and often hilarious memes to their fans asking them to #SaveTheCar”, and the New England Aquarium, which Monopoly said encouraged fans to #VotePenguin, even hosting Mr. Monopoly himself in a meet-and-greet with its penguins, which was broadcast on Facebook Live.

At the other end of the spectrum, the boot received 83,000 votes, the thimble received 81,000 votes and the poor wheelbarrow received 60,000.

Monopoly parent Hasbro announced fans had voted to retire the thimble in February.

The brand is also encouraging fans to welcome the new tokens and/or “tip their top hats” to the thimble, boot and wheelbarrow with the hashtag #MonopolyVote.

Coincidentally, World Monopoly Day is March 19.

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Lisa Lacy

Lisa Lacy is a senior reporter for The Drum, covering digital and search marketing. Based in New York, she writes about how brands use technology to connect with consumers, particularly as innovations like voice search, digital assistants and the Internet of Things change consumers’ lives forever – not to mention the data these platforms increasingly collect and the security and privacy issues therein. She is a graduate of Columbia's School of Journalism. Her bucket list includes riding in the Oscar Mayer Wienermobile.

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