Title: Super Mario Party
Developer: Nintendo, NDcube
Platform: Nintendo Switch
Release Date: October 5, 2018
How we got the game: We bought it
There was so much riding on this game. After being disappointed with the likes of Top 100 and Mario Party Star Rush, we were hoping so much that Super Mario Party would return to the original Mario Party games, with boards and mini games after every turn. The more we saw of the game, the better it looked.
Super Mario Party’s main mode goes right back to the beginning of the franchise, giving us boards to take turns going around and competing in mini games for coins to purchase stars. The player with the most stars (and coins, in the event two players tie for first place with the stars) at the end of the game is deemed the winner.
Each character has their own turn – no cars – and a mini-game is played after all four players end their respective turns. The mini-games are decided based on what color spot your character lands on. The 4-player, 2-versus-2 and 1-versus-3 games are back. There are no duels and no more battle games, but there’s a rumble mini-mini-game that can be played that acts like a battle game.
Each character — and there’s a good-sized roster with minimal “clone” characters — has his/her/their own dice block that gives more strategy to the turns rather than leaving everything to luck to go along with the standard dice block. There are a few items that can be gained and used throughout the boards as well, of course, to help even the odds.
One thing about Star Rush was that I enjoyed some of the mechanics but didn’t think they were executed well. Each character having their own dice block is a mechanic from Star Rush and pairing it with the old boards again was a great idea. It really added a lot of strategy, like Kris said. What added more strategy was that there are Ally spaces on the board as well as a cell phone that calls a random ally to your aid. An ally comes, gives you their dice block in addition to the ones you have, they follow you around and roll a dice block that rolls 1-2, and they can even help you in special ally mini-games.
Yes, those seemed to be great additions to the Mario Party franchise and I’m glad they were well executed with Super Mario Party. Aside from the board mode, there are a few other modes to explore. A mini-game mode is included, which was expected. A River Survival mode was introduced in this game, a mode where four characters are timed as they raft down a river, avoiding obstacles that slow them down and playing co-op mini-games to give them more time. It was interesting to play co-op mini-games rather than always competing against each other!
I really enjoyed the co-op games. I thought that was a great idea. That would even be great in the main mode. Sometimes you won’t want to work with a certain someone and you can always choose to sabotage. I do wish we could play the main modes online with friends. I also wish there were more than four boards and they were a bit bigger. The small size did work, but it made the game less intense and easier to reach the stars. I also miss the Bowser spaces. Like I said, there’s more strategy which is awesome, but the overall game is less intense – despite there being some intense moments. The game as a whole was just a lot of fun and really well done.
We’ve always been pretty impressed with the Nintendo Switch’s graphics, and Super Mario Party is no exception. You can see the details of Mario’s overalls, Bowser’s shell, and Monty Mole’s fur. All the characters are charming with their animation!
I really enjoyed the looks of the characters. They each have their own personalities as well. They laugh when they use a poison mushroom on another player, they talk and cheer with one another, and yes, they’re walking animations are adorable.
The music wasn’t too bad either. I’ll admit, we were probably louder from laughing or teasing each other than the music for the majority of the time, not allowing the music to really cement with me, but there was nothing I disliked about the music.
The music is always upbeat and catchy. The sound effects are just as well done too.
Super Mario Party is a fantastic game to play with friends, and is decent to play in single-player mode as well. While I am a little disappointed at the few boards for the main mode, I still will go back to them (although, who knows — more boards may be a thing with DLC down the line). Super Mario Party is a game that we will definitely keep going back to.
We’ve had this game for less than a week and we’ve already put in quite a few hours. I’m pretty sure I’ll be going back to it some more.
Super Mario Party gets…
4 out of 5 lives.