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How it All Started

      When I was a kid I played the most well known boardgame, Monopoly, like most of us did, but there were things I didn't like about it, like players being annihilated out of the game and when you're playing with friends, and they go home, what's the fun in it and yes it's fun to beat your friends but when they go home they go home. I suppose if you were playing in a tournament trying to win money, it might be a different story but when you're playing with friends it's the interaction amongst the players, your friends, that makes it fun along with how challenging the game itself is.

The Dream

      I had just really wanted to invent a boardgame that would be as good as or better than Monopoly and I really thought it would be a difficult task. Not until years later when I moved, in November of 1984, to Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, Burnaby area, near Central Park, that I sat down at my drafting table and low and behold, in three weeks I had a working prototype. I still remember that I had given myself six months to come up with a prototype. If I had known it was only going to take three weeks I would have done it a lot sooner. I have always had an inventive nature. Of couse it did take a little while, playing it extensively, to work out all the bugs like the ending. It is a very unique ending.

      What I came up with was a game that totally exceeded all of my expectations. It proved to be an exciting and challenging game. It can be played to any length, as set by the players, but don't let that fool you as the ending can be quite challenging as well. You don't just reach a monetary limit and win. You have to declare a win and then you still may not as each player gets one more turn to try and defeat you. See the Official Rules.

My First Prototype Game Board

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The New Game Board for 2013
It's Come a Long Way!
And it's Ready for an Evolution!!!

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The COMMODITY® Evolution

Are You Ready for an Evolution!?

      Monopoly has sold over 275,000,000 games worldwide. (Ref. Wikipedia) It is the old standard. It has been around for ever and it's something you know isn't going to change. It's old Reliable. Your kids won't tell you it's no good when you buy it for them to play.

      But I think it's time for a New Kid on the Block, a new Standard!

      I have designed a High Quality Game, and what I mean by high quality is not just the quality of manufacturing but the quality of play. I remember this one game that I thought would be a great game. It had a good concept and when I first saw it I thought it could have a lot of merit until I played it. It had no challenge. Is all a player did was move on the board and do what the cards told him to do when he landed on a space. There was no interaction amongst players and the only decision to be made was when to roll the dice.

      In any good game you need challenge and interaction between players. Without those two things it becomes pretty boring. I know I have accomplished this when I see players wanting to continue to play and not declare a win even though they could. But there does have to be an end to the game. COMMODITY® is designed so that you can play it to the length that the players choose to and still have an exciting end to the game where a player must Declare a Win and then each player has one more turn to try to defeat this player and many have, so Declare wisely.

Join the Evolution!
It's Time to Evolve to a New Standard!

COMMODITY® vs. Monopoly

Go Home or Not?

In Monopoly players get annihilated, then what do they do, go home? It's sort of funny as the high rent takers will eventually have no renters as people get annihilated so essentially there is no more game.

Players don't get annihilated in COMMODITY®. They stay in to the end of the game and even though they can go into Receivership a player can still go on to win the game and many have. There is a Bankruptcy clause but no one to date has ever gone into Bankruptcy.

Length of Play

Monopoly takes a long time to play and many games have not been finished because of this.

Commodity can be played to many different lengths. Short or long as determined by the players.


In Monopoly if you don't get one or more of the elite property sets you're pretty much hooped and you know it and the game isn't a lot of fun for you as you see the other players collecting high rent and who are they collecting it from?

In COMMODITY® players all start on an even playing field. They get the same amount of money, a $200,000 loan, and their companies are all the same size at the start of the game.

Advanced Play (For the boardgamegeek.com Guys and whoever wants a greater challenge)

      There are many different versions of Monopoly but they all seem to be the same basic Monopoly game in a different guise.

       In COMMODITY® there are rules for Advanced Players who want more of a challenge in the form of the High Risk Game and there is also COMMODITY® Gauntlet a real challenge where you can link boards together and play with a team. Gauntlet means Challenge.

Join the Evolution! Give COMMODITY®   a try and you won't be disappointed!

My Campaign: "Let's Start a Dang Boardgame Evolution" Is scheduled to Start . Check back here for updates.

      People that have played COMMODITY® have told me things like:

"I couldn't believe I could be so far down in the beginning
and could go on to win the game!"


"Wow, just like real life",

"You sure could learn a lot from this game!",

"Great game, I love this game!"

      So because of this reaction to my boardgame and lots of support Mark Allan Games (MAG) was born although a lot of things happened before I actually decided on that name. It was actually my Graphic Artist, Bob Masse's idea as COMMODITY® became known as
Mark Allan's COMMODITY® , my first and middle name.

My Plight

      After inventing my boardgame and playing it countless times, to work out any bugs, I was able to get the first 960 games produced but then the manufacturer required a 10,000 game minimum order and when I worked the math, I couldn't sell the 960 games and make enough to order the next 10,000 games. The marketing costs alone would eat up anything I made.

      What to do? Well..., I had to shelve it for a while knowing that something would come along eventually and now it has. The new technology allows us so many avenues. So I tried IndieGoGo.com a fund raising site. But that didn't work. I found that it was the same old story, if you have lots of money you can afford to make money or raise money. So it's back to the drawing board, which brings me to present time and my own Campaign

"Let's Start a Dang Boardgame Evolution"


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