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Mario Party
Marioparty1.jpg
North American boxart
Developer(s) Hudson Soft
Publisher(s) Nintendo
Composer(s) Yasunori Mitsuda
Series Mario Party
Platform(s) Nintendo 64
Release date(s) JP December 14, 1998
NA February 8, 1999
EU March 9, 1999
AUS March 9, 1999
Genre(s) Party
Mode(s) Single player, Multiplayer
Rating(s) ESRB: E (Everyone)
OFLC: G
Media 256-Megabit Cartridge

Mario Party (マリオパーティ Mario Pāti?) (often referred to as "Mario Party 64") is a party video game for the Nintendo 64 game console, developed by Hudson Soft and published by Nintendo. It was released in Japan on December 14, 1998, followed by a North American release on February 8, 1999, and a European release on March 9, 1999.

In May 1998, Nintendo and Hudson began a partnership to design and develop games together for the Nintendo 64. Mario Party was the first of the games that the partnership released.

Contents

Gameplay

Mushroom Mix-Up, one of the 50 mini games in Mario Party.

Consisting of 50 mini games, Mario Party takes the form of a traditional board game, with players taking turns to roll the dice block and move ahead the number of spaces shown. There are many different types of spaces players can land on, each producing a different effect. The primary objective of the game is to collect more stars than any other player. The winner of the game is the player with the most stars after all the turns have been completed.

Only one star is present on the board at a given time, appearing randomly on a space on the board where it remains until bought by a player for the specific amount of coins stated (20). After a star is collected, a new one appears on a different space on the game board or stays in the same place depending on what stage you chose. Stars can also be stolen from other players by passing a certain location on the board where a Boo resides—the player must then pay Boo 50 coins for the service of him stealing stars; coin stealing is free.

A secondary objective is to gather coins as well, for they are necessary for buying essential items such as stars and determine the game winner in the event of a tie. Coins are earned by landing on blue spaces or winning mini-games. Coins are lost by landing on red spaces, landing on a Bowser space, or losing certain mini-games.

At the end of each round of play (ie. after each of the four players have taken their turn) a random mini-game commences. The mini-games are generally short (about a minute in length), and fairly simple. There are 56 of them in total, divided into 4 different categories.

  • Four-player mini-games may be divided into three types:
    • the cooperative games, in which all four players collectively win or lose
    • the competitive free-for-alls, in which players must compete against each other in order to win a limited number of coins
    • the non-competitive free-for-alls, in which players accrue coins independently of one another and one player's loss is not automatically another's gain.
  • 2-on-2 mini-games place players on teams, so they have to cooperate with others in the mini game to win (even though they're still competing against each other in the main game)
  • 1-on-3 mini-games have a team of three against a lone player. Often, the game's objective is for either the lone player or the team of three to survive for a certain amount of time while the opposing player/team tries to take them out. The team of three must cooperate in order to win.
  • One-player mini-games only occur during a round when a player lands on a One-player mini-game space. They give a single player an opportunity to earn (or lose) coins depending on his or her performance in the mini-game.

At the end of the game there are three bonus stars given out. The coin star award is given to the player who collected the most coins at any one point during the game, the mini-game star award is awarded to the player who collected the most coins in mini-games, and the player who landed on the most "?" spaces earns the Happening Star. It is common for more than one character to be awarded the same bonus star; this happens if there is a tie for the category in question. The person with the most stars after the bonus awarding has concluded is declared the winner. In the event of a tie, the player with the most coins wins, and if two players have the same number of both stars and coins, a dice block will be rolled to determine the winner.

Mini-games happen at the end of each round or occasionally during a round when a player lands on Bowser or One-player mini-game spaces. In most situations, the winner(s) of a mini-game receive ten coins for their victory. In some mini-games, the losing player(s) have to pay the winner(s) a sum of coins.

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Modes

Adventure Mode

The standard mode of play, as described in Gameplay above. Up to four players play a board game interspersed with mini games, trying to collect as many stars as possible by the end of a set number of turns. The coins and stars earned in Adventure Mode are tallied up and transferred to a fund which the player can use to unlock things in the game.

The type of mini-game (4 player, 1 vs. 3, and 2 vs. 2) is determined by what color the players' panels are. If all four players have the same color panels, a 4 player game is selected. If there's 1 blue panel and 3 red panels or vice versa, a 1 vs. 3 game is selected. If there's 2 panels of both colors, a 2 vs. 2 game is selected. If there's a green panel, the color will switch to either red or blue randomly.

Mini-Game Island

A one-player mode in which the player navigates a world map and must win mini games in order to progress across the map. Winning mini games gives the player coins, and collecting 100 coins grants the player a life. Losing a mini game causes the player to lose a life. If the player loses all of his or her lives, the game ends, and the player must resume from where he or she last saved. After beating 49 mini games and reaching the goal you will find toad waiting for you. You will be challenged to a game of slot car derby. When you win you are congratulated and you unlock Bumper Ball Maze 1.

Playable characters

Players can choose to play as either Mario, Luigi, Donkey Kong, Peach, Wario, or Yoshi.

Reception

 Reception
Aggregate scores
Aggregator Score
GameRankings 77%[1]
(based on 12 reviews)
Metacritic 79 / 100[2]
(based on 16 reviews)
Review scores
Publication Score
Electronic Gaming Monthly 8.5, 8.5, 8.5, 9[3]
Famitsu 8, 8, 7, 8[2]
GameSpot 7.2 / 10[4]
IGN 7.9 / 10[5]

Mario Party received mostly positive reviews upon release, with praise to the party aspect of the game. However, its most common criticism is its apparent lack of enjoyment without multiplayer. GameSpot explains, "The games that are enjoyable to play in multi-player are nowhere near as good in the single player mode. Really, it's that multi-player competitive spark of screaming at and/or cheering for your friends that injects life into these often-simple little games, and without it, they're just simple little games."[4] IGN took a similar line, saying that it was the interaction between players rather than the interaction with the game that made Mario Party fun.

Sequels

The popularity of Mario Party has led to seven sequels: Mario Party 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, and 8, as well as Game Boy Advance, Nintendo DS, and E-Reader versions. A Mario Party for arcades called Super Mario Fushigi no Korokoro Party was released only in Japan, making a total of twelve games in ten years, including at least one every year except the years 2006, 2008 and 2009. The frequency of the sequels has led to some criticism regarding the games being unoriginal, as many ideas from previous installments of Mario Party have been recycled throughout the series.[6][7] This is evident in the mini games in the later installments of the Mario Party series which do not differ much from earlier Mario Party mini games. However, new Mario Party games have continued to sell well, and Mario Party is still a very popular franchise.[8]

References

External links


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