Part 1 – The Reception of Mario Party

Like any other video game
series, having multiple games in creating a series are probable
victims of negative criticism if things aren’t how people would like
them to be presented towards them. One big criticism of the games, is
the lack of major change. I mean, what type of change are they
looking forward to? Another is the board game-play while playing on a
board map. People claim that it’s really slow and that you have to
wait for the computer to make their moves if you’re deciding to play
alone. Geesh, it’s called patience. If you don’t have it, then you
don’t have it. There are also other aspects of this criticism that
goes around with the Mario Party series that really makes it seem
like it shouldn’t even allow to continue on anymore. Oh well.

I might take into
consideration with the reception from Metacritic. Scratch that, I WILL take into consideration and usage of the ratings gathered by Metacritic will be used for this. Let’s see, Mario
Party I. It scored an average reception of 79/100, which if you know
elementary school math, that’s 79%. And if you don’t, well now you
know. Anyway, that marks the highest average score given to any Mario
Party game. Why? Well, I believe it’s because of the freshness that
started things out like new. It’s a new type of party game, it’s a
new type of game that many have never been experienced before.
However, it also marks the beginning of the most common issue, the
lack of fun without multiplayer. Is it really that bad? Though I
don’t find it as fun as when playing with friends, it’s still nice
and time consuming whenever I need time to pass by pretty fast. And
that won’t stop there. It will continue to be a common criticism
throughout the series. How would I average it out? More of an 81/100
for me. So how’s the story in this game? Typical. The characters want
to be better than everyone else and being the party star is all that
matters. There’s really nothing more fitting than that for a party
game. How are the boards? Pretty simple and quick. The spaces are in
short distances from each other and it makes things go by in a quick
motion most of the time as long as the pace is kept. The mini-games
are very general, but that generality isn’t necessarily a bad thing,
because there’s really nothing to compare those mini-games with,
since this is in fact the first installment of Mario Party.

How is Mario Party II?
Well, it’s the next installment of the series that begins the
constant criticism of “just additions”, and “without a change
to the formula.” Really, how would you change the formula, without
affecting the formula that actually works? Metacritic has averaged it
as 76/100. Generally, it has reached positive reviews mainly praising
the added content like costumes and items.

I really don’t see how
such additions didn’t make it higher reviewed than the first one.
Mario Party 2 is obviously a better Mario Party game. What happened
here? I mean sure the secret formula hasn’t changed much, but that
really shouldn’t be a good enough reason to lower the ratings. They
rate it as if those other changes meant nothing to the advancement of
Mario Party. How would I average it out? Having the same formula
should not drop it below my MP I rating of 81%, but it shouldn’t
raise it too much either since there were just minor changes. I’ll
say, 83/100. The boards are simple as were the boards of the first
Mario Party, and the pace is well sped. Some recognition of
mini-games appear here, but mainly in different forms and with a
sense of change, and that’s actually a good thing for those who
enjoyed the mini-games which made it back to the next installment.
The story? A cute little happy story involving Mario Land being taken
over by the devious King Bowser Koopa. Nothing new here when
comparing to common Mario games, but again, it’s a party game, not an
rpg. Story doesn’t matter too much.

Mario Party 3, the last
Mario Party on the N64, received an average of 73/100. That’s right.
“Professionals” thought that it wasn’t as good as the 2nd
or the 1st. And can you guess what their reasons were for
that selection? Repetition, and nothing really new. Well, apparently
an inclusion of new game modes, new good mini-games, new playable
characters, and some modification with the game boards weren’t enough
to at least make it equal to Mario Party 2. However, I will have to
agree with them. Those additions aren’t something that should really
make this game deserve anything much higher than the 2nd
installment of Mario Party. But I would at least give it something
more like a 80-83, because it’s better than the 1st, but
arguably not as good as the 2nd. The story is different.
There’s more connection to the story with the main game while playing
through. Though the story isn’t necessarily appealing (The Millennium
Star appearing, ooooooh) it shouldn’t play a large factor in rating
the game. The boards now include the option of speeding up the
characters, or even slowing them down as they pace through the board
maps. That’s a nice inclusion especially if you happen to be playing
alone. The mini-games also give a nice polish to the overall
gameplay, however repetition of the mini-games begins to take place,
and that isn’t something most people want.

And now, there’s Mario
Party 4, the huge transition in the series which kicks off the start
of great visuals, and more colorful stuff. What’s the average?
70/100. The same criticism appears here again, and this time they
don’t use the actual word “repetitive”, instead they use “lack
of originality”. Well, what do they expect? A game from a series of
games to be somehow completely different than from what its
predecessors once where? Many state that there are parts in the game
where you or your opponents have an unfair advantage with things like
Fortune Spaces. Dude, or girl, it’s a board game, you shouldn’t
expect something to be 100% fair. Just kidding, of course all of it
is 100% fair because you have the same exact abilities to do that
very thing aswell. It’s only unfair if you yourself aren’t able to do
the same “unfair” action that someone else may be committing. Now,
what would I give Mario Party 4? I’m not trying to put in any form of
my likes towards the game because it’s my favorite Mario Party game.
To be fair, I would give it an 86/100. Though I like it, it does move
kinda slow, and though there are fun mini-games, the number of them
have decreased from 71 in MP3, to 62. Though it isn’t something
terribly bad, I notice that sometimes, certain mini-games get chosen
with a higher accuracy than others, and that really does get quite
annoying sometimes. The story, well, does it really matter? It’s a
party game, not a game which involves the fate of the world, so
people shouldn’t be so hard on the story.

Well, that was part 1, in
part 2, I’ll take a look at Mario Party’s 5-8 + DS.

Written by : madstarr