Happy 1st of April! Mono/Poly synth, Monopoly board game – get it? Oh, wait. Actually, they’re serious. KORG are doing a complete reskin of their Mono/Poly synth for iOS to look like the classic board game.
Here’s the intro video, featuring the tycoon mascot of the classic board game:
The 1935 board game Monopoly has certainly seen all kinds of branding, transforming it into the most-played modern tabletop game. But this has to be a first. Most of us pronounce the name of Korg’s Mono/Poly synthesizer as “Mono, Poly,” not one word “monopoly,” because of the slash in the title and the fact that the name refers to monophonic and polyphonic operation. But the connection was always clear.
Now, what that synth app on iOS has to do with the board game – not a whole lot. But what you do get is some very cute and clever UI imagery, including the signature pieces from the board game repurposed as knobs, the layout of the board (including on KAOSS Pad-style X/Y controllers), and references to the GO space (here signifying signal and sync). It looks adorable – they’ve even reproduced the crease in the board itself, which should take people back.
I suspect a lot of musicians these days feel like they’re losing the game of real-world global market capitalism, but… well, this is a free app update.
And whether you think this is ridiculous or not, it shows us KORG as always ready to partner and collaborate, building on past experiments with modular hardware learning platform littleBits, Nintendo game consoles, artists like OK Go, and more. However silly this venture is, that seems to keep an image of KORG that’s playful and open to new ideas.
Most importantly: you can randomize the settings with a roll of the “dice.” Now that’s a good feature to borrow from games of chance.
Tragically, the Monopoly edition Mono/Poly is no good for jam sessions. The sessions take forever, one person dominates right from the start, and pretty much everyone else has to try to devise some way to cheat just to get back in the game. (Sorry, I had to go there.)