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13 of 19 people found the following review helpful
on November 8, 2012
I bought Super Monkey Ball for Vita mostly out of a misplaced sense of nostalgia. I was a huge fan of the original Gamecube game, spending all hours of the night with college friends playing Monkey Target and other great minigames. And 11 years later, I was ready to recapture that fun.

Unfortunately, that's all SMBBS really is: fan service and little more. All the components are still there: solid level design in the main challenges, minigames, and so on. But what's there is not really well implemented on the Vita. Optional tilt controls are best avoided, as the Vita's gyroscope is simply not up to the task of handling the precision required by the main levels. Sadly, the left analog stick doesn't fair much better, as the rather loose Vita analog doesn't allow for much of a range between barely moving and full throttle. You'll find yourself rocking the analog back and forth uncomfortably in jarring motions, constantly fighting the game's singularly awful camera.

Unfortunately, much of the gameplay just hasn't held up well. The main stages quickly ramp up in difficulty and are well designed, but everything else feels rote and by-the-numbers. Even the supposed track creation function only allows you to generate a semi-random track using found/photographed objects. The minigames are largely the same as those you've seen before, and the once highly-addictive Monkey Target and Monkey Bowling are relegated to easy, poor-controlling shadows of their former selves. If you're a fan, you've seen this all before, and probably in a better-controlling form.

The graphics are decent but not exceptional. Colors pop on the Vita's screen but textures are poor (the water in the Monkey Target stage looks like something from the N64 era). Sound is pretty much what you'd expect.

All of this would be acceptable enough, except you're essentially getting a redux of an 11 year-old game for $30. Yes, it's cheaper than the average Vita game, but it would still be better placed as a $10 downloadable. As is, I can't recommend buying Super Monkey Ball at this price unless you're a diehard fan who salivates at the thought of wrestling a poor camera and spotty controls in order to perform speed runs on tough (and admittedly decent) designed courses. Just don't expect to spend much time on anything else in this dull, overpriced package.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on November 20, 2013
Banana Splitz makes a great addition to the Monkey Ball series, and is a must-own for fans.

For those who are familiar with the first two games and enjoyed the challenge of trying to complete all of the courses, Banana Splitz will still challenge the heck out of you on the Advanced setting. There are 50 Advanced courses which start off at a high level of challenge, rivaling the hardest levels on the first two games right from the start. You'll struggle to make it to the end, but for a game like Monkey Ball, that's a good thing! What other replay value would there be if you didn't have to learn the stages in order to succeed?

For those who are new to the series, there is plenty of casual-friendly content, too. The Beginner and Normal modes are very accessible, and there are tons of mini games, some of which are worth spending a couple hours messing around with.

A new feature is the ability to generate random levels by having the game turn photos into courses. You take a picture of anything, and the game will attempt to make a stage that looks like the picture. The level variety in this mode is a little lacking, but if you buy a $2 optional DLC from the Playstation Store, you can add a lot more pieces which add tons of challenge to it, and I've even seen it generate a course I was unable to complete. This adds a lot of replay value for anyone, as you can just mess around with random levels if the main game is frustrating you. This is also a great mode to play to hone your skills when you don't have enough time to play through the full game in one sitting.

For new players, one thing that may confuse or irritate you is how you move the ball in the main game. You actually tilt the level itself rather than move the ball. Yes, pushing to the left does move your ball left, but it accomplishes this technically by tilting the level. The game doesn't really explain this, but it's important to know. For example, if you are going very fast and fly off the edge onto a platform below, tiling back BEFORE you land is essential to stopping your ball, as it'll actually bounce your ball backward at an angle, stopping you much more quickly than if you pull back AFTER you land.

Another thing about the level tilt is that it forces the camera to be automatic; the player can't manually adjust the camera without a keen understanding of the game. The camera attempts to stay behind the player, so turning the camera is a matter of sort of pulling back and to the side to adjust your ball's facing. Newcomers usually complain about this, but it had to be this way because the tilt of the level is based on the player's perspective. If the camera could just be moved all around at will, it would allow you to do some crazy stuff with the tilt mechanics. If you play the game you'll see what I mean, but as a Monkey Ball expert I can tell you that it's something you can learn to account for, and it doesn't detract from the experience once you get accustomed to it.

One more thing I was happy with was the ability to share content with your friends through the game itself. Any time you complete a stage, you can save a replay, and replays can be uploaded for sharing purposes. Simply giving people your PSN username will allow them to look up your files and download anything you uploaded. Randomly generated stages can also be saved and uploaded.

There is some content in this game that is terrible: some of the mini-games are bad, and the gyroscope controls are not recommended, but I won't take off stars for modes that weren't important to me anyway. There is enough here to be worth the asking price. If there is any downside to Banana Splitz, it's that the Vita has tiny analog sticks.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on June 17, 2013
This game is a very unique game and a game vita owners should get if they want to experience all of what the vita can do. the graphics are perfect for the cartoon look and the gameplay is smooth and fun. its very challenging and very fun. the only thing wrong is that the game gets boring after a long time playing it. otherwise overall great buy
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on July 2, 2014
I have always been a fan of the Super Monkey Ball series, even back on the Gamecube/PS2. This game however I found dissapointing. I do not like the new graphical extremely animated style, and I believe the levels are altogether far too different from when the series started.
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on March 14, 2014
Good game. If you've played the previous ones, this will be no surprise. Controls well. Good price. Would recommend it.
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on January 19, 2014
I bought this as a gift for a teen girl. She loves it and thinks it a really great game.
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on August 25, 2013
I love the Monkey ball games and was looking forward to the Ps Vita version and it did not disappoint. It is great. I love the mini games, they are especially fun with another person. And the challenge courses are the same as the on the counsel, but on vita you can choose to use the stick or tilt. Awsome
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on July 6, 2015
Fun game, as all the SMB games are.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on December 2, 2014
Gift for grandson. Have not gotten any feed back.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on February 18, 2015
Couldn't play, not compatible with PlayStation TV
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