Brunei Darussalam


SHIMWORLD Feature in The Brunei Times
Read this story on BT Online

Believe it or not, I had never played Monopoly as a kid or as an adult. The last time I came across the name, it was in Robert Kiyosaki’s book, Rich Dad Poor Dad. The game just never appealed to me and I managed to grow up completely ignoring it altogether. It wasn’t until a few years ago that I came across a Special Edition UNIQUELY SINGAPORE version of Monopoly, one that immediately got my attention and definitely one the kids could relate to as they know Singapore well. Certainly, a game that their dad would, in an embarassing but not obvious kind of way, be playing for the very first time.

monopolyboard.jpg monopoly-lion.jpg
© Jan Shim Photography

As you can see, it’s very colorful, a very important consideration and factor as far as kids (and first time big kids) are concerned. It scores 10/10 for appeal and design. Using the very familiar Singapore Merlion one of a number of familiar game tokens. Here Jewel uses the Merlion while mine is the Gentleman’s Hat and Jamie’s Antique Car token is elsewhere on the board.

monopoly-dice.jpg monopoly-reaching.jpg
© Jan Shim Photography

Like the actual place and very popular hang out, Clarke Quay is a property you can buy from the bank. A Title Deed card shows ownership of the property. When a player lands on your property, you collect rent but there are rules that apply to mortgaged property and so forth. The game can get pretty intense and at the level my 9 and 7 year olds are playing, it can get competitive and emotional too.

monopoly-incometax.jpg monopoly-laupasat.jpg
© Jan Shim Photography

Bruneians may find Income Tax unfamiliar territory as we have no such tax. As this is a game, we just consider it one of the many penalties that exist alongside with rental, etc. The game lists many familiar properties that Singapore is known for such as Lau Pa Sat, Newton Circus, Little India and Chinatown, many of which my kids have not actually visited. When they do someday, it will be a place they can associate with.

monopoly-outofjailcard.jpg monopoly-property.jpg
© Jan Shim Photography

Jewel holds up a Get Out of Jail CHANCE card and to date (continuing from previous play) she now owns the most property including Utilities and MRT stations and she gets good healthy income from collecting rents :). That striped rug next to the board resembles the corporate colours of Standard Chartered Bank and its appearance in this photograph is purely coincidental.

monopoly-banker.jpg monopoly-moves.jpg
© Jan Shim Photography

Like the real world we live in, banks are responsible for much of the money and properties that exchange hands. It’s no different in Monopoly and this banker is responsible for the bonus payments when luck comes your way.

© Jan Shim Photography

Jewel sells me a Singapore Indoor Stadium property for a bargain price of $100. I’ve had a streak of bad luck and lost much of my money to rents and jail time. It’s comforting to know where she places her priorities when her dad needs help. It’s interesting how a game can reveal a person’s behaviour too.

Here’s the bottom line, I feel Uniquely Singapore Monopoly has greatly reduced the learning curve required for kids to learn about finances and property ownership. As they grow up, their perception of money will undoubtedly change but as business and finance savvy parents, there isn’t such as thing as too young.


  1. Monopoly “The Game” is indeed a great tool for introducing kids to investment and money management and I think it is so important to start financial education early a childs’ life.
    Another interesting game to explore is Cashflow 101 the Board Game. Enjoy!


  2. Hahaha.. cant believe u’ve never played this game, its a classic, they even have the Disney version , which I have 😉 hehehe.. practice more and lets play the game over coffee soon!


  3. @ Lidya
    Thanks for visiting. If it helps to know, I had the game and kids placed near a glass door with plenty of natural ambient and directional lighting. The images are post-processed to my usual style.

    @ Audrey
    As you’re a regular here, it’s hard to imagine that, huh? Admittedly, I’m a slow adopter in my product life cycles, photography being an obvious one. Many think it started as a hobby/passion and it’s easier to just agree (save myself a lot of explanation) but it’s just not true. Quite amazingly, I turned pro within months of picking up my first digital SLR camera and have been going from one shoot to another since I started like 4 years back, after I left the field of information technology.


  4. I used to play Monopoly all the time when I was younger. Those games can last a LONG time 😮

    It’s nice seeing your daughter being helpful by selling you a property at a discounted rate… rather than trying to snatch all of your property knowing you’re strapped for cash, lol.


  5. I havent played Monopoly for years! Cashflow 101 is more representative of reality I feel though. I used to organize Cashflow 101 games in the conference room of my old office. Lots of fun! I should start organizing weekend games once more…


  6. Cashflow 101 is one of the few items from the Rich Dad series products I haven’t got and from what I’ve heard, it may also be a good step-up from Uniquely Singapore Monopoly when the kids are grown up and maybe even have a few years of real world work experience under their belt.

    As an IT professional looking after the company’s bottomline and an entrepreneur and business owner now, Cashflow 101 may make more sense today than it would have years back although the game’s design could do with some make over to improve its appeal. I also hear there’s now Cashflow 202 though I’ve not yet seen pictures of the game altogether.


  7. I read about cashflow but never try ’em.

    Anyway, I don’t believe that you never play Monopoly! LoL, maybe because I simply can’t live without it, =p

    My mom bought a Spongebob version Monopoly months ago, it’s so funny when you say “I wanna buy that… errr… Plankton’s Bucket!”, lol. =D


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