Mario Party Review – Definitive 50 N64 Game #17

The list so far: The Definitive 50 N64 Games

Do you value your hands? How about your friends? No? Great, then you’re ready for Mario Party!

Mario Party is yet another series that grew out of the N64’s 4 controller inputs. The system was made for live, in-person multiplayer gaming, and Mario Party is one of the best examples. Whether it’s kids hyped on candy or adults fuelled by alcohol, Mario Party makes for a raucous multiplayer experience.

The Warp Pipe on Mario Party’s main menu is your entrance to adventure. Through here, you and three competitors (hopefully human opponents, although computer players can be subbed in) will challenge one another.

Rather than just throw players into a mini-game gauntlet, Mario Party has them navigate board game styled boards. Eight game boards of varying complexity are available, each very Mario themed. From DK’s Jungle Adventure and Peach’s Birthday Cake to Bowser’s Magma Mountain, it’s all here.

Players bonk spinning dice and move around – where they land determines what happens next. Sometimes they’ll just go up or down a few coins, other times they might run in to Bowser or have a chance to alter the board in some way. The goal is to navigate to spaces where stars can be purchased, and hopefully have enough coins to afford them when the time comes. The player with the most stars wins.

Of course, most coins are won and lost in the mini-games which take place between each round.

Among Mario Party’s 50 mini-games, there are 4-player free-for-alls, 1v3s, 2v2s, and even single player games to be found. The mini games can test your reflexes, your memory, your precision, and even your pain tolerance.

Classics include Hot Rope Jump, Mushroom Mix-Up, Skateboard Scamper, and many, many more. Best of all, obviously, is Bumper Balls.

Outside of the main game, over in the Mini-Game House, you can use the coins you collect in-game to buy mini-games and play them individually any time you want.

The Mini-Game House is also where you’ll find the Pot o’ Skills, which leads to Mini-Game Stadium. This is, a simplistic star-shaped board where a game of Mario Party can be played with all the complications stripped away. There are no stars. Mini games are played, coins awarded, and the overall winner is determined simply by his or her coin total.

Mini-Game Island is Mario Party’s offering to soloists. The player navigates an overworld not unlike those found in many 2D Mario games, and works to clear each level, that is, each mini game. All 50 mini-games are included.

A few of the mini-games in Mario Party, specifically Paddle Battle and Tug o’ War, as well as the Mecha Fly Guy mini mini-game require players to rotate their joysticks as fast as possible. Following release, it turned out the drive to win was simply too great. Players ended up using their palms to rotate their joysticks, and came away with blisters.

Nintendo offered players special gloves following an outcry.

You won’t find the original Mario Party on the Wii’s Virtual Console, just Mario Party 2. Apparently, the controversy generated from the first game’s potential for hand-harming was just too much for Nintendo to risk re-releasing the game.

Of course, numerous Mario Party sequels have been churned out since the original’s success, with sometimes questionable results. Two more came to the N64, and Mario Party 10 is now on its way to the Wii U.

Let me know what you think of Mario Party and the Definitive 50 in the comments section below. Don’t forget to like this video and subscribe. Check back next week for entry #16 on The Definitive 50 N64 Games.