In this opinion piece, Arjun bemoans what he feels is the deterioration of the Mario Party series, and shares his hopes for its future.
Mario Party, the game where players once sacrificed the skin of their palms in order to be crowned as the almighty Superstar. Yep, it was that competitive, and I for one loved it. For me, the Mario Party franchise was part of my "big five" for every new Nintendo home console - the rest being the next Mario 'main' platformer, Legend of Zelda adventure, Mario Kart, and Super Smash Bros. Yes, believe it or not, a new Mario Party always felt as exciting as the next Mario Kart to me. Unfortunately, though, this began to change over the years of the Nintendo GameCube, and even more so with the arrival of the Nintendo Wii. Something happened to that certain edge Mario Party once possessed. I then began thinking - why has the series arguably plummeted so far downhill, that it could be considered a mere shadow of its once former glory? What happened to it? Let's explore below.
Mario Party 1, 2, and 3 were magic. And no, this isn't pure nostalgia talking - I could go back and play them today with a group of friends and still have the same level of fun (if not more) as I did over a decade ago. What was so great about these games was the fact that while each player was working towards a collective goal (defeating Bowser in some way, shape or form), the competition between the four participants was still as fierce as ever. These games were not forgiving - the element of handholding certainly didn't make its presence felt - and it almost felt like a "survival of the fittest" kind of challenge. If you got lost in the fold, you had to grind your way back up, unless some miracle resurrected your chances of winning - which did indeed happen more often than not.
The trilogy had some of the best mini-games to date (Mushroom Mix-Up/Hexagon Heat, Skateboard Scamper, and Running of the Bulb were some of my favourites), and each win/loss really felt important due to the rewards and consequences that followed. Yes, you used to actually lose coins for losing mini-games, or win nothing at all if the result was a draw! Sure, you had your arguably controversial mini-games (such as the aforementioned palm-skin-peelers), but what the Nintendo 64 Mario Party titles lacked in sound and motion-control gimmicks, they more than made up for with wacky ideas.
As the series progressed it introduced some cool concepts that helped keep the games fresh, such as Mario Party 5's Capsule system. This removed the mechanic of purchasing items in shops, and instead allowed the player to place capsules up to ten spaces in-front of them, or pay a small fee to use capsules' effects on themselves. I welcomed small changes such as these, as I didn't feel it took too much away from what I initially loved about the series in general. However, sooner or later, the games began to change a little too much for my liking. It seemed as though, slowly but surely, the games started to lose their competitive edge. In-board events that allowed players to purchase items/liaise with characters to steal coins and stars from opponents appeared to dwindle, and it started to feel that the games ushered in more luck-based events instead of players having more control in each decision they made.
Events such as the notorious "Chance Time" spot and the post-board awards became more luck-based, and that coupled with more sprint-based boards made it more difficult and less fun in working towards a strategy to secure the win. I remember always thinking (with the earlier games) in advance of my next few turns, along the lines of "I have six turns left, I'm in third place, and I'm in this position of the board map. If I can roll at least a four, acquire this item, use it on my next turn, and reach the Star before then, I should be able to finish 1st place!". For me, that's what grabbed me about the franchise. Sure, it's a casual game at the end of the day, but casual games still need some level of spirit! I can't pinpoint the precise moment as to when I began to feel this way (as the GameCube's Mario Party titles are a bit of a collective blur to me), but it certainly came after the N64's original trio.
I almost want to say that Mario Party started to feel more "PG" with successive entries, as for me it seemed to progressively discourage the notion of being frustrated at your friends for their actions, and instead take an "Ah well, that's my luck!" sort of approach. And that wasn't cool to me! I don't know about you, but the underlying fear of never being safe throughout a Mario Party board was one of the most addictive things that the series had going for it. I could be more than five stars up from 2nd place, but still feel unsafe and anxious due to Boos, Magic Lamps, and the aforementioned "Chance Time" spot that could strike at any given moment. Ingredients such as these made the game feel that much more fierce and rewarding for holding onto a win, and it's arguably what gave the franchise its unofficial slogan of "the game that ruins your friendships".
The "PG" sensation really came into play in Mario Party 9 and most recently Mario Party 10, and I think you've already guessed why I say this. Players now traverse the board together! Don't get me wrong, I initially scoffed at the idea when it was first presented in Mario Party 9, but I've slightly grown to enjoy it in my recent play-throughs of Mario Party 10. However, although it can be quite entertaining to setup your opponents for misery, I'm constantly reminded about how little control I really do have in manipulating the board's events. My point is, while I've grown to somewhat appreciate the mechanic, I do believe going alone is the way to go. The board just felt like more of an adventure to each player in the older games, and it made for some awesome moments such as Mario Party 2's Duel mini-games (if two people land on the same spot). Navigating the board together just makes everything seem more of a team game and less of a spirited competition.
When the announcement of Mario Party 10 was made, I was super excited. I thought to myself, "it's the franchise's 10th anniversary, so surely we're going to have an entry that ticks all of the boxes". Thankfully, I didn't hold my breath. Sure, Mario Party 10's visuals are glorious to look at, the mini-games are fun, and the boards are quite clever, but the lack of game modes and customisable flexibility let the title down on the whole. Yes, amiibo Party has marginal merit (it's reminiscent of the old Mario Party formula), and Bowser Party can be quite a blast with a group of five players, but overall we were given the same old casual treatment with some extra (and arguably unnecessary) amiibo functionality. The Mario Party games of yesteryear had great single-player modes, encouraging the player to play each board to unlock characters, boards, mini-games and in-game items. Mario Party 1's Mini-Game Island is an excellent example of extra single-player content, something that recent entries have failed to achieve since. It's reasons such as these as to why I'd never play a recent Mario Party title on my own.
The way mini-games appear in Mario Party 10 is also a little frustrating, as mini-games are only triggered upon landing on mini-game spaces or if a mini-game hasn't appeared for quite some time. Of course, this either leads to a board filled to the brim with mini-games, or hardly any mini-games at all. I actually recently played the Mushroom Park board with my friends, and we got to the end while barely scratching the surface of playing ten mini-games - excluding boss battles. And speaking of which, boss battle mini-games are a bit 50:50 to me. They're fun and intense, but having two of them as a staple on every board can become quite mundane. Perhaps each board should have only ended with a boss respective to that board, and that's it. But this isn't a Mario Party 10 review, so to stay on track, my point is that the series has become an overly-casual game about teamwork. I mean, you even get rewarded for coming 4th in a mini-game, whereas you used to actually lose coins for coming last in some of the early Mario Party games, as mentioned before.
So, with all that said, what do I think Nintendo should do to make the series' inevitable NX sequel great? Here's a few places to start in my humble opinion:
- Revert back to separating players (although you could add the mechanic of travelling together with certain triggered events).
- Bring back items that are easily accessible (whether this be via an Item Shop, Capsule system, or something of the sort).
- Provide the option of choosing from a mix of boards that possess both the classic turn-based system and the more recent sprint-based system (Mario Party 8 sort-of did this).
- Keep amiibo functionality in, but don't take away from the game without them. They could perhaps allow amiibo to offer customisable functionalities (such as how Mario Party 2 had Mario and friends dress-up in certain costumes depending on the board chosen), instead of offering a game that requires mandatory use of the figures.
I'd say that just about does it. What do you think of the evolution of the Mario Party franchise? Are you happy that its latest entrants have arguably gone a bit more casual than their predecessors, or are you a fan of the old formula?
Awesome read, very much agree for the most part. I actually skipped MP10 thinking it would just be a HD MP9, but I may grab a preowned copy or something based on what I've read here.
I totally agree with this article. I always enjoyed the older games because of the fun and competitiveness.
Just recently, I played Mario party 4 with a friend, and I had five stars. Then I landed on a fortune space (the bane of Mario party), and I had to swap my five stars with my friend's one star. It was awful, but it was fun! I enjoy the fun and competitiveness. My brother and I haven't gotten nine or ten because it's not really Mario party. And yes, before I get some backlash on this, I just think it's somewhat dumb to be tied down to a giant cart going around the board yourself. It could be fun, but hey. Not my cup of tea.
This makes me want to buy Mario party 2 on the Wii U eShop.
The first 6 Mario Party games are incredible party games. My friends and I use to play them all the time when we were younger, and we find ourselves drinking to them every so often nowadays. Mario Party 7 was alright, and 8, while fun initially, doesn't have that spark. Then came 9... We don't speak of the franchise after that title. I'm hoping Nintendo revives the series back to its roots... But I'm not holding my breathe. We all saw what happened to the Paper Mario series. Nintendo is clearly not keen on listening to its fans, and they're fine with completing revamping a franchise with the risk of killing it.
The focus on Amiibos and the way players are forced together really annoys me. What the hell went wrong with the dev team for such a good series to god bad like that? 8 was great, then 9 happened.
amiibo Party was disappointing to me. Not even all the cast are playable! If you pick Daisy, then you're stuck with the car!
Soon as Nintendo realizes we don't like the system in 9-10 the better.
If its REALLY a concept rights thingy, then talk to Hudson/Konami to either make it okay or let them make the next one...
online gaming became a thing, nintendo never added online. people quitting an issue? just play with friends.
@Darkwario1 Don't worry, I 100% agree with you. I think most people in this comment section will too. It's not that Mario Party 9 and 10 are bad games, it's just that they're not truly "Mario Party". It's like making the next Call of Duty a rail-shooter and expecting fans to be fine with it. If it ain't broke, no need to fix it. That's something Nintendo refuses to understand.
I've only ever liked Mario Party 1, 2 and 3. For some reason I just couldn't get into the GameCube titles.
It's become awful and the massive focus on amiibo in MP10 means now I couldn't care less about it. Why should anybody care when Nintendo don't care about its quality either?
I've always hated the car mechanic in MP9/10. However, I do feel like, with every new installment from old series with the old rules, there were more and more little events and such that just made everyone's turn feel like ages. I am happy that they turned down the minimum amount of turns from 20 to 10. I'd just love to have a Mario Party 5 with less events. Some people demand an Online Mode but I don't know, a game of Mario Party can take quite some time to finish so I have my doubts if that can be realized.
This is an unpopular opinion, but I think we just can't go back to the original way of how the game worked.
We've had 8 games of essentially the same thing with minor variations. Unless they can come up with something new, I think Mario Party should be struck dead.
Make some sort of "Best Of" title with a board from all 10 console games, a few minigames from each game, a good cast of characters, and HD Graphics. Then, goodbye Mario Party.
I consider Mario Party 2 to be the best one. It kept all the best things from the first one while introducing some neat, new mechanics. 3 was pretty good, as well.
I'm just twiddling my thumbs waiting for MP2 to be released on the NA VC. (and Mario Kart 64...and Super Mario RPG....)
I disagree...I LOVE the newer Mario Party's! M arid party 9 is definitely my favourite. I own them ALL and regularly play them. The older ones are slow and boring compared to the newer titles...adults AND kids can play together. We have had so much fun with party 9, 10 and Island Tour.
The last time I played, almost every mini game was luck based and I hated it. There was no real winning the game, just one person didn't get screwed over as badly in the end.
I wonder why Nintendo decided to make games that everyone hates with MP 9 and 10. Was it some kind of marketing gimmick?
The gamecube MP's are my absolute favorite! 4 especially, I just LOVE the minigames in that one! Those games were also a large part of my childhood, so I have many great memories with them. Booksquirm and Avalanche! are the best!
They have too many mini game party games now and it takes it's toll on the quality. Between Nintendoland, Wii U Party, Animal Crossing amiibo Festival, and MP10 you probably could make 2 really good games......but they spread themselves too thin trying to support their systems by themselves.
If they took the best of AC, MP 10, and Wii U Party they probably would have had a great game and room left over to make Nintendoland 2 which I hope is still an option because the potential is there.
Good read! I agree, Mario Party definitely needs to return to it's roots.
This explains it as I've never played the first few games the last few that I have played have be atrossities!
My first few plays of MP10 and Amiibo Party were disappointing, but eventually they won me over. I've especially enjoyed trying to collect all of the Amiibo tokens.
That said, I don't like the group travel in anything but Bowser Party. My favorite installment of the game was MP8, especially the monopoly-inspired level.
@Toadsfriend Hello Nintendo employee.
Really bizarre what's happened with Mario Party. MP 2 and 3 were golden. The series suffered fatigue in the GCN years, and now enteies are more spaced out, but Nintendo has completely forgotten what makes MP fun.
Who keeps buying these games, anyway?
One of the main reasons I have yet to play a Mario Party game is because of the over-reliance on luck instead of skill. I get it, it is meant to be a party game and as such everyone should be able to play but not at the expense of player skill determining who won, because at that point I wouldn't call it competitive, more a roll of the dice and that type of gameplay isn't for me. It's a shame really because I love mini games in my titles but until they lighten up on the luck element I will be watching the series pass me by.
The only way they can go back to being good games is if they go back and stop innovating, and its clearly something they don't want to do.
I liked Mario Party DS and got a lot of hours out of that. Overall, the series is disappointing now. I think the changes need to begin with Hudson Soft. They were the lead developers forever but they lost the contract for 9 and 10 because 8 didn't sell well. Perhaps going back to them to the magic they created once upon a time.
I know rage quitting is a gaming problem but Mario Party really needs online play. The main people who buy Mario Party games are 20+ in age and don't have access to local multiplayer. If someone quits a game, I know it would screw everything up but give that person a strike for doing so. 3 strikes and you get a 24 hour ban or something.
Couldn't agree with you more, hopefully they release the original games on the shop at some point.
Never understood a lot of the criticisms the GameCube Mario Party games get. 5 had some great boards and the capsules (don't forget the Super Duel mode in the tanks!), 6 had the day-night cycle which would change certain things on the board and in minigames, 7 had a fantastic 8-player mode. I feel the notion that the GameCube parties are less good or more bland is pretty much based purely in nostalgia.
@Danksparce 1 won't happen because of the lawsuit. 3 could happen and 4-7 of course won't because they're GC games.
Can't a man dream?
@Danksparce Yes....but dreams can never come true majority of the times.
As for the series, if 10 is a great game...how does lack of modes come as a big problem? I mean that's that same thing mentioned for Ultra Smash. Good game but lack of content. I find it surprising that many short games out there get huge praises like Fusion but when it comes to games like this, they get criticisms that aren't criticisms but more like...complains.
Not to into the series, although I can say that I had loads of fun on the DS mario party locally!
@Yrreiht The change was because members of the dev team found it boring spending the majority of their time waiting around for other players to finish their turns.
I think Wii Party is even better than Mario Party itself, i mean 8,9 and 10. 8 is not so great, the MC is too chatty blah blah blah and then the way you enter shop mode is very stiff. 9 and 10 put all players in 1 vehicle, so whatever they do, also occured to remaining players and i don't want to move back or lose my items just because the other player got bad luck. Very strange, i enjoyed Board games on Wii Party a lot rather than Mario Party itself. Wii Party have Bingo, Spin Off, Swap Meet, Global Trot, Board Game Island (Snake and Ladder ala Wii) and all of them are really different events.
@Yellowkoopa I think Mario Party 9 is to Mario Party's future as Sticker Star is to Paper Mario's future.
Totally agree with this article!!!!!
MP2 will probably always be my favorite Mario Party game. Loved MP3 especially that Battle Mode thing. I wasnt going to get MP6 until I saw that they had that Basketball mini game. Yes. That 1 mini was my ONLY reason for getting MP6. XD MP6 was fun and all but I think that's were the series took a change. In MP6 all the stars the players collected added towards the bank to ultimately see what happens of the argument between the Sun & Moon. [Pokemon references! Eh? Eh??! XD ]
Anyway, if all the stars we are collecting adds towards the main bank of MP6, then what was the point of stealing stars from other people? It didnt matter if you won or lost. Everyone contributed towards this end goal. I didn't like that too much. MP7 brings back the classic feel to the earlier MP games. The MP8....eeeee. MP9...and MP10.... Okay.
MP9...we are all together now? What kind of friendly BS is this??!! This is Mario Party! We fight! We argue! We send Boos to steal stuff from each other! Not cart a cart together! No! Just no! I hope MP10 wouldn't bring that back but they did.... sigh....
MP10 is basically that Board Map in Mario Party 8 where Bowser is chasing you. How lazy is that?? I couldnt bring myself to buy MP9 & MP10. I still go back in play the earlier Mario Party games because those we MUCH MORE exciting & thrilling & suspenseful than these recent ones. I hope MP11 will go back to what made itself great too....but I feel that Nintendo wont do that. They feel like "Paper Mario Sticker Star" stuff.....
I love Mario games along with Kart, Tennis, and Golf series but Party was something I could never get into. I played the first game back on N64 and I just never got the feel of it. I can't remember which one but I played a Mario Party game on GameCube, it was alright playing with friends, but it wasn't a game I wanted to buy for myself. I remember playing Sonic Shuffle on Dreamcast and I thought that game sucked.
I loved MP early games too, now if I want a multi player fix I'm more likely to play Wii Party U battle boards instead of MP 9/10.
Mayb it's time for Wii Party U X Amiibo, that will do it for me
I quite enjoyed Mario Party 10. I agree it's largely luck-based, but there is an element of strategy in terms of how you can set up other players depending which die you choose to use. And as you said, the boards themselves are great fun. It's far from a classic, but it's worth a punt if you see it on offer.
It was never GREAT. It was fun with a lot of flaws, but the first few were unique, but you can't repeat that success forever.
After horrendously bad 10 with crappy mini-games and basicaly no content, you can go only up from there. At least I hope.
So far it looks like MP gets worse with every entry
Probably explains why I haven't played Mario Party much after 2. I always loved no matter how crappy you did, there was always that chance that you could eek out a win or better stats based on some other stat you might not have expected
You guys should report on the Zygarde forms.
I love that even though there's been 13 mario parties...they've tried to innovate and make them all different.
I love the car mechanic I really do...after mario party 9 then number 4 is my favourite then 10.
@CrazedCavalier Something you STILL have to do anyway.
in fact, the current developers of Mario Party, ie, ND Cube, most of them are former employees of Hudson Soft. and the same director who developed the Mario Party with Hudson, is in Nd Cube
"As seen in the credits for Mario Party 9, Nd Cube indeed houses many ex-Hudson employees, some vary between folks who have focused primarily on many other entries in the Mario Party series"
@wiggleronacid If it ain't broke, no need to fix it. That's something Nintendo refuses to understand.
Paper Mario is a testament to this.
@SakuraHaruka True. Anyway, Mario Party 9 was a huge disappointment and Mario Party 10 was even worse.
@allav866 True. Last good Paper Mario seen on GameCube.
I'd like to see a "Mario Party Trilogy" game on Wii U which features the original N64 games with the same quality graphics as Mario Party 10, with the ONLY gameplay change being controls for the rotating mini-games in the first game. I would definitely buy such a game. The only thing the new games are doing well is keeping the Mario characters - I was concerned a few years ago when Nintendo released a Mii party game - that they would be dropping the Mario characters in favor of the Mii characters. I forget what the game was called now. I never played it.
MP was always a crappy franchise
No it wasn't. Play Mario Party 2 and you will soon change your mind.
@Mega_Yarn_Poochy Well, gamers have always been fine with keeping same-ie mechanics in most other game series, be it Nintendo or otherwise (COD, sports games). Those games have always done a good job of keeping the same formula, while introducing new stuff, as the GC Mario Party games did. I'd love to see a return to the mechanics of say, MP3, but just add tons of new features! New minigames! 100+ of em! Complex boards! Surely I don't ask too much?
Between all the controversy with current generation Mario games, (Classic 3D Mario vs. 3D Land/World, Classic Paper Mario vs. Sticker Star/Color Splash, Classic 2D Mario vs. New Super Mario Bros., Classic Mario Kart vs. Mario Kart 8) I think the one thing that we can all agree on about current generation Mario games is that Mario Party 1-2-3 > Every other Mario Party > Mario Party 9/10.
I had 5,7,8. I enjoyed 5 a lot and 7 slightly less. 8 didn't appeal and I got to try 9, wasn't my cup of tea so to speak.
I think it's time for Wii Party take over Mario Party franchises. Overall, Wii Party and Wii Party U offered more than just Board Games. Better in the future, there will be Wii Party NX or something like that but with more great looking avatar ( not Mii) and we can customize their looking and their voices like MySims Party. And reduce all mini games based on luck, it can be tedious and unfair for some people. Plus, i want there is a Amusement Park like Bomberman Land 3 on PS2 so we can wandering around enjoy the scenery of Mini Games booth spreaded out on different location or basically like Go Vacation Wii before. So, we will never bored to play Party games. If we don't want to play minigames or Board games, we can enjoy some places like Ferris Wheel, Spinning Mad Cup, Boom Boom Car, etc or watching some events like watching movies, watching fireworks, watching dance or singing performance. In other words, more than just a Party Games. It would be nice if there are a lot of activities that we can do in 1 retail or digital download game. Just buy 1 and you get a lot of activities to do.
I'd love to see a return to form kind of Mario Party as an NX launch title and I'm saying that as someone that actually liked Mario Party 9.
I have to admit, though, Mario Party 10 was...below par.
Mario Party 5, to me, was king.
Nintendo literally can never stop tinkering with their franchises. Sometimes same is good. Mario Party hit its zenith with 3 and slowly went downhill culminating with the abomination that was 10. (Not to mention only being playable with wiimotes, never have I bought a game that's main mode needed a controller that doesn't come with the damn system, absolute horse ****).
Other series that have met a similar fate: Paper Mario and Metroid.
Me and my siblings started gaming with the Wii, and one of our most played games was WIi Party. Recently we started playing Mario Party 2 on the VC and have had a blast! All the mario party games we played till then (8, 9, 3ds and 10) kinda sucked. It's a little sad, cause minigame-wise the series has just kept getting better, but the main modes are so lackluster, and have been for so long, that up until now we just thought Mario Party sucks.
@Angelic_Lapras_King Konami will make a Mario Party pachinko machine before they let someone use the rights to something they own, if they even have the rights to the concept.
" it's a casual game at the end of the day, but casual games still need some level of spirit!"
" the series has become an overly-casual game about teamwork"
jesus mother of god, 10 years and this absurd fallacy doesn't die?!
Just because a game is not eagerly played by 20 hours in a row or doesn't has "mature" elements or doesn't fit YOUR definition of a "REAL" game doesn't mean is "CASUAL" whatever the hell that's supposed to mean. You keeo using that word like something that is beneath you or is not "real".
Really? game jokernalists? aren't you tired of this BS? seriously?!
As a late comer to the whole Nintendo thing (having always been a Sony man at heart) my first experience of Mario Party was the DS version - I loved this and spent many a happy hour playing with some combination of my wife and kids. The 3DS version was then disappointing and I haven't played any since then.
@HaNks they got around quitting with pollen anyway.
Desperately in need of online play
The car thing isn't so bad, I like the boss and mini boss mini games.
But that shouldn't make it so classic mode doesn't exist, and I don't mean 'exists if I tap amiibos to the gamepad a thousand times each game'.
If the amiibo mode had a means of unlocking without amiibo, and just required one scan in to start rather than one scan to start, one scan to say you're ready for your turn, one scan to hit the block, one scan to end your turn, and so on infinity, and just called itself 'classic mode' then 10 wouldn't have been a bad game.
We have played Mario Party 8+9 hours long on Wii.
Mario Party 10 was a dissapointment. Even MP on 3DS is better.
Nintendo should put all good minigames together and give us some challenge. Nowadays, thay made too many party games. I suggest to put them all to one and bingo !
I got Mario Party 8, and its nice, but it it is nowhere on the level of MP1, 2 and 3. Those where fantastic, and I completely agree, Ninendo needs to go back to its roots. The reviews for MP10 were horrible, so it was skip for me.
Regarding online... It has always been focused on couch multiplayer, so I don't know if it would work well. Nothing beats laughing with your friends when something happened mid-game.
Mario Party 8 has a very annoyed MC. Compared with Wii Party, even the MC voice sounds weird but at least not too chatty. One thing i noticed. MP8 runs on 40 frame per seconds during Board games while Wii Party running on 60 frame per seconds for all modes. Every events on MP8 when you got something looks kinda tedious, i mean i must wait for several seconds longer than on Wii Party. I got the stars, wait for the gesture, wait again for several seconds and then continue. Ugh, kinda tedious to watch. I critized MP8 from the way it deliver character gesture, time to spend for watching their movement, sound effects that i heard, loading time, fun factor for mini games. My score for MP8 is 4/10.
Looks like Nintendo forced us to buy Amiibo to play their games or else. Scan amiibo every single events ? My... so tedious and unefficient.
@memoryman3 Ew, Daisy
The last Mario Party game that I had fun playing was Mario Party DS. Every entry after that has been sub par, and not really any fun. They really should just create a "reloaded" version that uses mini games and boards from the first 3, with some twists and bonus content added.
They also need to ditch the car asap.
Mario Party with all the best mini games from the series
@Mrrabbitpuncher He's very obviously a small child that was raised in the 2010's.
It's very simple why Mario Party has been deteriorating in quality. Since Nintendo has become more family friendly, they have been coming out with a lot of BS commercials depicting a happy family sitting around the TV with bright happy smiles. The GameCube and N64 days never had that. Since they are so FRIENDLY nowadays, they made their games SO EXTREMELY FRIENDLY and HAND HOLD-Y too. That is why the older games had the message of "You're not going to beat Bowser and become the star, I WILL!", "Not unless I beat you first!", compared to the crap of today comprised of "Let's work together!" and "Congratulations! I'm happy for you!".
It's dumb and degrading. This is why I love the GameCube's dark and edgy marketing FAR more than the underdeveloped and innocent, not to mention NON-EXISTENT, marketing of the Wii U and 3DS.
That is my reasoning.
Its really funny this article popped up. I have a crew (we call ourselves the shine sprites) and we get together every other weekend to, you guessed it, play Mario Party. We pound out some of those grueling 50 turn rounds.
Most people count out all Mario Party's as luck. That's really funny because I'd say 9 out of 10 matches I win. That's some really good luck right there! The fact is they're not ALL luck. The strategy is to position yourself correctly, use your coins wisely and shoot for the game changers. There is a LOT you can do to tip the scales in Mario Party. The mini games define skill and the dice define luck but the choices define the players ability and that's why I gain the edge so often.
Sure I can't avoid the new start appearing RIGHT in front of my wife who is already in first place but I can sure time the chance time dice in MP3 to steal my friends 3 stars. Mario Party 9 decimated what I feel is the key that made Mario Party and that is strategic positioning. I can't CHOOSE to go the opposite weay of the star because chances state it should appear there once the other player buys one, etc.
I feel the game needed a shake up, there was a lot of stagnancy but I think this article addressed it. The overall degree of competitiveness did begin to decline over time. The controls of the GC titles are extremely stiff with limited control over the players - they are more cut and paste than they are master the controls. The range of punishment diminished.
I feel at the end of my soap box that it wasn't the core mechanic of the game that was lacking, I think it was the fluff that they kept trying to staple over the top.
Yes, when Nintendo gets its brain back. Wich looks very unlikely at the moment!
I just have to say...I do agree with the author....Mario party is going to die unless nintendo can change things...
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