The Landlord Game is a free educational board game designed to help faculty gamify the economic dimensions of social justice for their students.

Hearkening back to Lizzie Maggie's The Landlord's Game, an ur-design of the game we know today as Monopoly™, the game leverages players' knowledge of Monopoly, complicating its reductive economic model by problematizing its too-easy assumption of ‘winning’ as the survival of the fittest in an otherwise egalitarian setting.

Unlike Monopoly, which assumes a level socio-economic playing field, Landlord more closely reflects actual inequities under the current American economy. Players quickly find that on the gamut of roles from Owner to Manager to Employee to Unemployed, it is increasingly difficult to avoid bankruptcy as the game progresses. In Landlord, this is precisely the point! By adjusting these and other rules to effect real-world economic disparities at the start of the game, Landlord aims to stimulate a frustration so comically absurd that gameplay evolves into a discussion among the players around the systemic inequities of contemporary capitalism.

Download the game and use it in your own class!


Game Designers

Many thanks to Dr. Julia Douthwaite, Professor of French, whose 2018 exhibit Money Worries at Notre Dame's Snite Museum was the impetus for the development of this educational game. Nor would this project have been possible without the support and contributions of my colleagues at the Hesburgh Libraries, including Psychology Librarian Cheri Smith, who led the design of the properties schema. My deep thanks as well to the domain experts, below, with whom I worked to develop the learning objectives and game content.

Dr. Randal Sean Harrison

Game Designer

Emerging Technologies Librarian
Hesburgh Libraries
University of Notre Dame

Dr. Arian Farshbaf

Domain Expert

Assistant Professor, Economics
Business and Economics
St. Mary's College

Dr. Sianne Vijay

Domain Expert

Assistant Professor, Economics
Business and Economics
St. Mary's College

Dr. Connie Mick

Domain Expert

Associate Director
Center for Social Concerns
University of Notre Dame