Mario Party: A 15 Year Celebration

Take a trip through each of the Mario Party games in this anniversary jamboree!

By Kyle England. Posted 02/10/2014 09:00 3 Comments     ShareThis

Mario Party 2

Nintendo 64 (2000)
Boards: 6
Minigames: 65

The second party outing for Mario is perhaps the biggest fan favorite of the series. Mario Party 2 took all the features of the first game and made them bigger and better. Boards are more interactive, more events occur, more minigame types are introduced, and usable items make their debut. This sequel is altogether a tighter and more featured party game than its predecessor.

Mario Party 2 marks the first appearance of duel and battle minigames, which offered even more ways to ruin friendships. Characters are also appropriately costumed for each board, which is just for flair but remains cool nonetheless. If there was anything lost from the first game, it would have to be that the number of boards has dropped from eight to six. However, the boards in MP2 are fairly large and complicated.

If you want to have a classic romp with your friends, Mario Party 2 is a great way to go. It doesn’t have the harshness and some of the negative trappings that were apparent in the earlier game. Also, this game tends to rely less on luck overall, which is good.

You can play Mario Party 2 on an original N64 cart, which hovers around $25-30. The game is also available on the Wii Virtual Console, and has the distinction of being the only Mario Party title with this honor.

The Good:

  • More features and deeper gameplay
  • Tons of minigames
  • Considered by many to be the best in the series

The Bad:

  • Fewer boards than the first game
  • Many minigames are remakes

Stand-out Minigames: Hexagon Heat, Sneak ‘n’ Snore, Look Away

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3 Responses to “Mario Party: A 15 Year Celebration”

  • 111 points
    roykoopa64 says...

    Wow, excellent job stepping through the whole (console) history of the series! I remember hearing you mention you would be working on this feature when I listened to a recent episode (10, I think) of the podcast (oops, I’ve missed some of the newer episodes). My experience with the Mario Party series is rather limited, so I found it interesting to read about the changes made along the way.

    So DK is not a playable character starting with Mario Party 5? I was wondering why he showed up on the box covers in some of the later games. Looking it up online now, I see he becomes a non-playable character you interact with on certain boards. I wonder why they did that? Even Mario Kart 7 still has features the burly ape as a playable character.

    • 819 points
      Toadlord says...

      Removing DK as a playable character always bummed me out, too. Especially when they go to great lengths to make you hate the guy, like when he gives a free star to someone who doesn’t need it. I know when I was playing the GameCube Mario Party titles, I viewed him on-par with Bowser in terms of annoyance.

      Truth be told, there’s not much that could get me to buy a new Mario Party nowadays. I’m just not in the position to play with many people for local multiplayer, and online would have to be done really well for me to consider it.

      • 285 points
        Kyle England says...

        Glad you guys liked the feature! I was never a huge DK fan in Mario Party, but it was odd that he became an event guy from 5 onwards. His minigames were always tough to unlock if you wanted 100% as well.

        80% of the fun in Mario Party does come from being with your friends. I can’t see that level of energy being replicated through online play any time soon. The fact that I can still play Mario Party 15 years later and have fun with it now that I’m older really speaks to that.

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