So, you may have heard that Electronic Arts signed a new deal with Hasbro to create casual games based on notable Hasbro licenses such as Monopoly, Scrabble, Yahtzee, Nerf, Tonka and Littlest Pet Shop (?).

As a results of this, Hasbro and EA jointly set out a special promo-only commemorative Monopoly set, featuring both Electronic Arts and Hasbro properties in place of the normal property names - and kindly sent one over to GameSetWatch (and yes, publishers, we can be sent stuff, we're not below mentioning that!) Anyhow, here are a few pics I took of the special board:

An overview of the board - with EA & Hasbro in the middle.

Zooming in on one of the sides, featuring The Sims 2, Pogo.com and Spore (just $220 to buy!)

The actual cards for the red set - great rent for Spore with a Hotel!

The other EA area, including Battlefield 2142, Medal Of Honor Airborne, and Need For Speed Carbon - also see Hasbro title Risk to the left..

Final shot of the card - note that it says '2142 Battlefield' thanks to odd logo text positioning, heh.

Honestly, the real story here - which I sadly don't have time to recount in detail - is the completely terrible deal Hasbro did in selling their interactive division (along with the Atari and Microprose brand names and games!) to Infogrames for about $100 million - mainly in stock - back in 2001.

Hasbro has spent tens of millions of dollars since buying their interactive rights back - for example, $19 million most recently and $65 million back in 2005. In fact, if you count the $22.3 million that 2K paid for the Civilization franchise, then Infogrames effectively got rights to the Atari name and all their games - plus other Hasbro rights they still hold such as those for Dungeons & Dragons, and other stuff like Games.com and various other Microprose properties - for free. OUCH.

Mind you, Infogrames is gradually drowning under its long-term debt after its massive spending spree, of which this acquisition was just a small part - but this one was the steal of the century. Still, should be fun to see some of these Hasbro properties in slightly better-funded hands, as long as you're not an EA hater, mm?