Mario Party 3 and Mario Party 4 Retrospective

In anticipation of the release of Mario Party 10 on March 20, Mario Party Legacy is taking a look back at the Mario Party series to recount all the good and bad that has come in the last 16 years. You can see our schedule and vote in our polls here.

Mario Party 3. What an amazing Mario Party title. Many consider Mario Party 3 to be the peak of the series, and the content in the game really help support this claim. Mario Party 2 improved on so many of the problems of the original Mario Party, and Mario Party 3 took what Mario Party 2 did so well and made it even better. Mario Party 3 was certainly the peak of the N64 titles to say the least.

Deep Blooper Sea. Woody Woods. Waluigi’s Island. All of the boards in Mario Party 3 retained a unique and creative feel while staying true to what makes a Mario Party board so well designed. More importantly, brand new items like the Lucky Lamp, Reverse Mushroom, Cellular Shopper, and many more changed the dynamic and strategic element of the series. Now able to hold up to three items at once, those who held the right items at the right time could change the game in their favor in a number of ways.

As always, the new minigames in Mario Party 3 were an integral part in making Mario Party 3 the great game that it was. Duel minigames were introduced and brought us classics like Vine with Me, End of the Line, and Fowl Play. And of course, you also got incredible standard minigames like Snowball Summit, Toadstool Titan, Eatsa Pizza, and many more. We also got a boss battle with Stardust Battle, a first for the series.

What about the new modes? Mario Party 3 introduced the Duel Mode, a new type of game where two players run around a board trying to deplete the health of the other player by using partners like Toad, Koopa, Boo, and more. Partners can be used as both an attacking force and as defense, and each partner came with its own stats that differed in terms of usefulness. Unfortunately, this mode never returned in a future installment in the series, but that doesn’t mean it wasn’t a blast to play!

But of course, no game is perfect. Game Guy, why oh why do you exist?

Mario Party 4 was the first Mario Party game to leap to another generation of consoles. The game gave a very fresh and new look for the series, thanks to the power of the little game system known as the GameCube. Mario Party 4 looked and ran much better, and because of this it was able to add features that weren’t possible in the series before.

Boards were now rendered in full 3D, and each board featured various areas that allowed for new interactive events on the board itself. It may seem like nothing big, but at the time it was quite the update. Mario Party 4 introduced the Mega and Mini system to the standard board gameplay. It was a neat concept, but it was made an essential part of the game and this lead to problems. The Mini Mushroom is used to access parts of the board that you would otherwise not be able to reach, making it troublesome when this involves reaching a Star. The restriction of not being able to get a Star while using a Mega Mushroom, the equivalent to a standard Mushroom in Mario Party 2 and Mario Party 3, was also an unfortunate addition. But we did get the Lottery, an area you can visit on each board the gives you a chance to win big bucks!

And like every other Mario Party, this entry in the series gave us another round of great minigames. Bowser minigmaes made their introduction in this game, but you also had several Extra minigames like Mushroom Medic and Beach Volley Folley that helped give the game a few extra things to do outside the main mode. Other minigames that stood out include Stamp Out!, The Great Deflate, Dungeon Duos, Butterfly Blitz, and plenty more.

Outside of that, Mario Party 4 brought with it several smaller additions that fans of the game will surely remember. Presents were earned when playing the Story Mode that would help fill up the Present Room with character themed items and knick-knacks. The Extra Room included Mega Board Mayhem and Mini Board Mad-Dash, two smaller boards that centered around the use of the Mega Mushroom and the Mini Mushroom.

Both games were great additions to the series, and they were also ones to shape what would come in the next entry to the series. Mario Party 3 and Mario Party 4 were also the first games to include Daisy and Waluigi as playable characters, so what’s to complain about!

Michael Koczwara

Executive Editor and Founder of Mario Party Legacy. Head Administrator at the Mario Party Legacy Forum.

More Posts - Website

Follow Me:
TwitterFacebookYouTube

50 Comments
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Luigiguy567
Luigiguy567
March 3, 2015 2:21 PM

I loved Mario Party 3, but Mario Party 4 was a “meh” for me. The boards and design of the game felt really bland, although a lot of the minigames were pretty fun.

Rosie the Dress Troller
March 3, 2015 2:21 PM

Mario Party 3 is nice and yay to Daisy’s introduction to the Mario Party series!
Nothing against Mario Party 4, but I prefer the other 3 Gamecube Mario Parties. But Mario Party 4 marked the first time that Peach and Daisy got their current outfits and the first game with the Daisy redesign.

RafalRib
RafalRib
March 4, 2015 10:12 AM

Yeah the Gamecube MPs (from the least favorite to the best are):

4
5
6
7
😛

Rosie the Dress Troller
March 4, 2015 3:35 PM
Reply to  RafalRib

Agreed! But I love 6 and 7 equal, and 5 is close to them

Boo3DSmashBoo
Boo3DSmashBoo
March 3, 2015 2:22 PM

These are the only Mario Party games I never played. Their minigames and boards look cool like any other Mario Party game. There’s not too much else to say, every aspect of the games is well wrote in the article.

Rosie the Dress Troller
March 3, 2015 2:27 PM

I know that this doesn’t matter so much, but it would’ve been nice if you guys have put as a trivia note or something like that in the Mario Party 4 part that it was the first game that Peach and Daisy got their current outfits and the first game with Daisy’s redesign.

Yoshifan355
Yoshifan355
March 3, 2015 2:31 PM

Mario Party 3 will always be the peak of the Mario Party series IMO. Everything was nailed so great in almost every way possible. I never hated one board in MP3 once they were just so good. The mini-games are so fun and excellent (except The Beat Goes On is terrible). I just loved this game so much as a kid and I will never forget how fantastic is was. Mario Party 4… Felt lackluster in comparison to the previous game. I felt the boards were kinda forgettable for being dull and boring. Goomba’s Greedy Gala was the one that… Read more »

Vipsoccermaster
March 3, 2015 2:49 PM
Reply to  Yoshifan355

I liked The Beat Goes On, at least the music when players take turns in transition.

Yoshifan355
Yoshifan355
March 3, 2015 3:00 PM

My main problem with that mini-game is that it takes forever and if you finish all the notes with 2 or more players you Draw the game and get no coins! That just what me thinks about it lol.

Vipsoccermaster
March 3, 2015 3:02 PM
Reply to  Yoshifan355

That’s the one problem, yes. It’s hard to get a draw unless you have really good memory.

Vipsoccermaster
March 3, 2015 2:48 PM

Mario Party 3 was a great Mario Party from the Nintendo 64. Boards were great, and so were the mini-games. But Game Guy. Ugh, I only liked two of its four mini-games, but it felt awesome only when you won a huge amount of coins. Duel Mode was also great, having a variety of partners and combinations you could take on. Mario Party 4 was okay, but nothing really special. Props to this Mario Party is that it’s the first one on the GameCube, and 3D models and content. One thing I really liked about Mario Party 4 was the… Read more »

SpiderStaryu
SpiderStaryu
March 3, 2015 2:54 PM

Ahh, these two Mario Parties, are the best in the series in my opinion. Mario Party 3 did everything right. The board maps were awesome, Mini-Games were DELICIOUS, space balance was great, and all the items are fantastic, having 3 items in your inventory at once is an amazing addition. Game Guy is ehhhh, but even then the idea itself is decent, I just wish you could choose how many Coins to bet, rather than all the Coins. 😛 Mario Party 4 is very fantastic as well, it’s not as good as Mario Party 3, but it’s still a strong… Read more »

OhMyToad
OhMyToad
March 3, 2015 3:17 PM

Mario party 3 had one of the least exciting boards in the series imo…I don’t understand why everyone is praising them so much, but it all depends on taste. I really liked the Story Mode though. My other complaints to MP3 are the art style and the voices of the characters…again, this depends on taste. Game Guy was meh and all the minigames were fine. Some really good, some really awful MP4 was great. I loved it’s story mode, it had fun mini-games; I can’t really remember any awful ones, please point out some haha, plus the transition to fully… Read more »

DannyRaisin4
DannyRaisin4
March 3, 2015 3:19 PM

MP3 is in my top 3 while MP4 is in my bottom 3. Know that I think about it that’s kind of interesting

Mother4EverX
Mother4EverX
March 3, 2015 3:20 PM

Boy where do I begin, everyone pretty much said what I wanted to 😛 but I’ll say this. Mario party 3 is easily the most well known Mario party in its day (and now still) the boards were all VERY unique and the mini games were Amazing!!! I LOVED THEM ALL!!!!….ahem, it was really good and I enjoyed everything on it, I can’t really think of anything bad about it 😀 As for Mario Party 4, it was the very first Mario party I ever played, I grew up with it and had tons of fun playing with my family… Read more »

OhMyToad
OhMyToad
March 3, 2015 3:27 PM
Reply to  Mother4EverX

I wouldn’t say MP3 is ‘easily the most well known mario party’ as it sold less than MP 1,2,4,5 AND the DS version

SpiderStaryu
SpiderStaryu
March 3, 2015 5:59 PM
Reply to  OhMyToad

I don’t think it’s right to say it’s the most “well-known”. However, I definitely think it’s fair to say it’s the most balanced.

RobinFTW
RobinFTW
March 3, 2015 3:34 PM

Woaw, so much memories 😀 It’s the first Mario Party I ever play. I don’t have MP3 but my old friend has this game. I remember the minigames were really fun (our favorite was Toadstool Titan) and the Duel mode was awesome! A really good game. Mario Party 4, on the other side, is not my favorite MP game. Yes, I got it after more recent games (MP 6, 7, DS, 8, and 9), so it was not THAT fun, and my opinion is influenced, but still… The minigames were good, but the main gameplay IMO was meh. I prefer… Read more »

MarioManiac01
MarioManiac01
March 3, 2015 3:38 PM

I haven’t played any of these games. So…I can’t say my opinion.

MarioFan56
MarioFan56
March 3, 2015 4:02 PM

Mario Party 3 was one of my favorites!!! … but unfortunately I haven’t played 4, I’m planning to get dolphin though.

Silver
Silver
March 3, 2015 4:14 PM

Mario Party 3 will always be the perfect one of the series for me, it holds a special place inside my heart, there is so many memories about it that… Oh. <3

Jimmy365
Jimmy365
March 3, 2015 4:16 PM

I want to play MP3 so bad.

E.Gadd
E.Gadd
March 3, 2015 5:00 PM

The reason I like Mario Party 3 as much as I do is definitely because of it’s item system. I think its the best one the series has had. Boo Repellent meant you could protect yourself from more cut-throat players, Cellular Shoppers gave you the chance to access the shops on the go, and rarer items like the Stop-Watch could even extend or reduce the amount of turns left depending on how you wanted to play it. Yes, Game Guy is pretty broken and the boards to me were less exciting than 2 or those in several later games, but… Read more »

MarioManiac01
MarioManiac01
March 3, 2015 5:51 PM

To celebrate for Mario Party 10’s release, I’m watching the Mario Parties 1-4 by everyone’s favorite collab channel: TheRunawayGuys!

OhMyToad
OhMyToad
March 4, 2015 6:26 AM
Reply to  MarioManiac01

My favorite collab channel is WiiRikeToPray, guess that means I’m a nobody xD

king_austin95
king_austin95
March 4, 2015 7:47 AM
Reply to  OhMyToad

what eo you guys mean by ”collab channel” exactly?
my favorite video game channel is gamexplain. and then wiifolderjosh.

RafalRib
RafalRib
March 4, 2015 10:09 AM
Reply to  king_austin95

Collab channels are Youtube Channels where a group of youtubers join each other to play games 🙂

king_austin95
king_austin95
March 4, 2015 11:43 PM
Reply to  RafalRib

oh…. so not gamexplain…. idk then. does wiifolderjosh/bitblock count?

RafalRib
RafalRib
March 5, 2015 9:34 AM
Reply to  king_austin95

Kinda 😛

king_austin95
king_austin95
March 5, 2015 1:40 PM
Reply to  RafalRib

lol.

RafalRib
RafalRib
March 4, 2015 10:10 AM
Reply to  MarioManiac01

TheRunawayGuys dont do new games so i rarely watch them 😛

VideoTanooki
VideoTanooki
March 3, 2015 6:09 PM

Oh Man 3 and 4 bring back some great memories! I think Mario Party 3, 5, and 6 are the Mario Parties that I have put the most time into.

Cole Oglesby
Cole Oglesby
March 3, 2015 6:39 PM

Mario Party 3 and 4 were some of the better games in the series, I have to admit. I don’t have many memories from Mario Party 3 because I’ve only owned it for a few years, but Mario Party 4 really takes me back. I remember I would always play Boo’s Haunted Bash because it was my favorite board. 🙂

Pikachu Trainer
March 3, 2015 8:20 PM

I remember when I played mario party 4, every time there was a game that involves button mashing I would make my dad help me win because I’m bad at button mashing. Ahhh the memories (:

king_austin95
king_austin95
March 4, 2015 7:45 AM

lol. i’m good at button mashing games.

CuriousUser
CuriousUser
March 4, 2015 2:24 AM

Was good to see Waluigi and Daisy being added into the series, leading to more than 6 characters.

CuriousUser
CuriousUser
March 4, 2015 2:26 AM
Reply to  CuriousUser

RIP to Kate Fleming, explains how Daisy had a different VA in these games from Mario Tennis, only time she voiced Daisy.

CuriousUser
CuriousUser
March 4, 2015 4:50 AM

Mini and Mega Mushrooms? They didn’t exist back when MP4 was released. They were Power Ups new in NSMB.

S3L1NA_SN1P3S
S3L1NA_SN1P3S
March 4, 2015 5:24 AM
Reply to  CuriousUser

Well, the more you learn. They did exist in Mario Party 4, made a disappearance from 2002 to 2006, and it arrived back in NSMB.

CuriousUser
CuriousUser
March 4, 2015 6:15 AM
Reply to  S3L1NA_SN1P3S

You couldn’t get Bigger than Super Mario (MEGA MARIO) up until NSMB, nor did there be a use of shrinking with something that’s not a Poison Mushroom.

king_austin95
king_austin95
March 4, 2015 7:43 AM
Reply to  CuriousUser

yes you could. the mega mushrooms in mario party 4 made you grow and the mini mushrooms made you shrink. so do not say stuff like you know what you’re talking about if you don’t know what you’re talking about.

sorry if that sounded rude. i’m just trying to correct you, so you know what’s what

CuriousUser
CuriousUser
March 4, 2015 5:07 PM
Reply to  king_austin95

I have a feeling I’ll need to check out some Gameplay Footage of MP4 to see those Mushrooms in action.

king_austin95
king_austin95
March 4, 2015 11:42 PM
Reply to  CuriousUser

yes. but i’ve played the game before and i can assure you its true

SuperZambezi
SuperZambezi
March 5, 2015 9:16 AM
Reply to  CuriousUser
RafalRib
RafalRib
March 4, 2015 10:08 AM

Best Game of these two: Mario Party 3!

Cuz Duel Mode with Toad and Milennium Star! (which is fake cuz the real one is prettier 😛 YA JUST GOT SPOILED!)

KoopaLover
KoopaLover
March 4, 2015 6:36 PM

MP3 is wonderful, but too long.

Crusher
Crusher
March 4, 2015 6:55 PM

I honestly felt that Mario Party 3 was the best in the series!

XT
XT
March 4, 2015 9:09 PM

I remember Mario party 4 was one of the first Mario games I had ever played it was really fun and a good game to play with friends even though I technically played it by myself however one thing that I never did was beat story mode with all characters I always just did one character and played everything else that was unlocked

king_austin95
king_austin95
March 4, 2015 11:57 PM

i don’t think i’ve ever played 3. i want to some time though. i’ve played every other mario party.

Spongyoshi
Spongyoshi
March 11, 2015 6:16 AM

MP3 is really fun… In multiplayer… Yeah the AI kind of ruins the game for me.. He’s too good to the battle minigames and overall gets Lucky a lot and makes the luck-based section too high and unfair at least for me… But in multiplayer,it’s an awesome Mario Party!
MP4 is… meh. Minigames aren’t that good,the boards aren’t that inspired for me,are too much luck-based since there’s always somewhere where you need to rely on luck to get to the path you want and you get stuck easily.. And also the design of the boards where bland