Super Mario Party in the test – Back to the roots – Games, Nintendo Switch, Top topic

Super Mario Party was released for the Nintendo Switch on October 5th, 2018. After Mario Party 10 on the Wii U didn’t convince me very well, my hopes are on the latest part of the fun multiplayer series. You can find out in the following test whether the title uses the features of the mobile Nintendo console or whether it is warmed up frozen food.

Apart from the handheld games, Super Mario Party is now the eleventh part for the Nintendo consoles. The title “Mario Party” celebrated its debut in Europe in March 1999 on the Nintendo 64 and since then has tied numerous players together in front of the screens of our time. The gameplay hasn’t changed much since then, with small details deciding whether the title is celebrated or cursed, but more on that later. Basically, Mario Party plays like a board game and the associated characters. The happy rolling of the dice is interrupted by the so-called mini-games, which are the soul of the Mario Party series. In the past titles there were a lot of them with up to 80 mini-games, so that boredom rarely arose.

The party begins

The heart of Mario Party is the party mode, in which we can take part with up to four players. In turn-based intervals, players take turns rolling a die to advance on the playing field. There are also different variants of the dice, which can be used tactically and can be worthwhile. However, the standard die shows a number between 1 and 6 and therefore takes you more slowly or sometimes very quickly through the individual worlds. After each player has rolled the dice, one of the aforementioned mini-games is played. Here the players compete against each other either in teams “two against two” or in the variant “one against all” or “all against all”. Victory or defeat in most games depends on the skill of the player, but a lot of luck is also involved here and there, which makes the individual rounds varied and unpredictable. As a result, Mario Party gains long-term motivation and replay value in the basic principle. In addition, the varied mini-games allow that even inexperienced players are not inferior to us gamers without a chance. The player who ends up collecting the most stars in the mini-games or in various events on the field leaves the party as the winner.

What is worth waiting for

1656392412 706 Super Mario Party in the test Back to theThe most successful console game in the series to date has been Mario Party 8 for the Nintendo Wii with around 8.35 million units sold (Mario Party DS: around 8.98 million). With Mario Party 9, which was also released for the Nintendo Wii, the success dropped significantly (about 3.22 million), which I think had an elementary reason. With Mario Party 9 and later also in Mario Party 10 for the Wii U, Nintendo implemented a changed game system and put the players together in a single vehicle, which was moved in turn across the game board based on the number rolled. Although this change had no effect on the mini-games, it limited the gameplay to such an extent that I still remember it as a negative example for past Mario Party titles. So I’m all the happier to announce that in Super Mario Party for the Nintendo Switch, this limitation is a thing of the past and my teammates and I can finally go our separate ways again.

It’s a Me, Mario

1656392412 288 Super Mario Party in the test Back to theThe range of playable characters grows from title to title, so that we can now choose between 20 playable characters. Some also have to be unlocked first, which benefits the replay value. What’s more, in this title, each of the characters has their own special die that we can use in a round of Mario Party. Shy Guy, for example, has a dice that has five fours and one zero, which means we’re almost certainly going four steps forward. This entails a bit of tactical fine-tuning, which is obviously good for the mode. Delighted with the return to player separation, I threw myself straight into party mode. Since no human players could be found on the release day and late at night, the first round went against the CPU. Here you choose between three difficulties, which have a particular effect on the mini-games. Where chaos still reigns at the lowest level of difficulty, the non-human players do quite well at the medium and highest level of difficulty. But nothing beats a couch co-op party with three other players. Pushing someone off the board or taking the coins from the bread, there is nothing nicer than the reactions of the other players. Nevertheless, I think it’s great that Nintendo integrates decent CPU players so that you can get your money’s worth in single player as well.

We define the playing time per Mario Party based on the preset number of rounds. The shortest variant includes 10 laps and lasts about 50 to 60 minutes. If that’s too long for you, you can also use the individual mini-games, of which Super Mario Party comes with exactly 80 pieces. At the beginning we have 60 games at our disposal, which are very varied and support the functions of the Joy-Cons here and there. You can safely store the Pro Controller in the closet with this title, it is simply not supported. The new “Partner Party” mode is also an interesting innovation for couple evenings. This results in completely new approaches to achieve victory. In addition, we can fall back on a “raft adventure”, in which we dare down a raging river with up to four players, along the way we complete numerous mini-games. A fun mode that doesn’t quite match the classic board game mode.

Monotony on the boards

1656392412 258 Super Mario Party in the test Back to the

Where there is variety in the mini-games, monotony awaits us on the four game boards.
The first impression is quite convincing, but if you play the board for the second or third time, a certain routine sets in, which is only broken by the funny players and the various mini-games. I would have liked more variety within the levels. In addition, I find four game boards, of which we have three at our disposal, to be simply too few, since this is the main mode of the game. The size of the individual cards is also rather meager.

Online multiplayer? All or nothing!

1656392412 13 Super Mario Party in the test Back to theSince September 2018, Nintendo has only offered its online service for cash. 20 euros are due here for an annual membership. I thought, do you even need this? Except for Splatoon and Smash Bros. coming December, I couldn’t think of anything great to play online. Super Mario Party would definitely lend itself here as a multiplayer title. And yes, Nintendo offers an online mode in Super Mario Party. Unfortunately, this is limited to ten selected mini-games. Why? The party mode in particular would have been ideal, so that you can play a round with friends outside of game nights. Even players who don’t live just around the corner could have been involved. A lot of potential was wasted here and I don’t understand why. Of course, Super Mario Party is the most fun when you have your fellow players sitting right next to you and witnessing the reactions up close, but Nintendo still has no arguments why you should use the online payment service. This online mode is not one of them.


Super Mario Party is a must buy for all game nights. It also looks fantastic on the Nintendo Switch and overall offers the widest scope Mario Party has brought to date. Still, the title feels severely clipped. The ridiculous online mode and the reduced game boards seem meager at first glance. If you look past that, however, Super Mario Party offers a lot of fun and a lot of variety with new modes. It remains to be seen whether the mini-games will eventually lose their appeal and whether the tenth round on the same boards over and over again will tempt me, as an absolute Mario Party fan, to turn my back on the title faster than I would like. Until then, I’ll have a lot of fun with Super Mario Party.

reader rating3 reviews


Great atmosphere

Lots of new modes

New dice bring in tactical elements

AI is also worthwhile for single players

Joy Con functions are well integrated

Varied mini-games

Four much too small game boards

Weak online mode

No save option during party mode


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