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Customer Review

3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A decent Mario Party title, December 9, 2013
This review is from: Mario Party: Island Tour (Video Game)
It's pretty easy to impress me. Most people did not like Mario Party 9 for the Wii at all, but I actually liked it and found the changes to be new and refreshing to this series, a series that is extremely stubborn to change. Ever since the 3DS came out, I've been wanting a Mario Party title, and alas, it is here in the form of Mario Party: Island Tour. And as I said, it's easy to impress me...but this game just comes off as decent.

The boards in Mario Party: Island Tour (MPIT for short) are all unique from one another. Each board has its own set of rules, for example, you have Perilous Palace Path, your typical Mario Party board, and then there's Rocket Road, a board where you play minigames to win "rocket boosters" that will send you flying across the board. I thoroughly enjoyed playing each of the different boards and trying out the different control schemes. It made it seem like you weren't just playing the same board over and over again only with different scenery, as is the case with most Mario Party games. However, the boards in MPIT either seem too long or they seem too short. Star Crossed Skyway can take as long as an hour while Rocket Road can be completed in five minutes. I can understand the boards being short; this is a handheld game after all. But there isn't really a board that's right in the middle. I think 30-40 minutes is the perfect length for a Mario Party round. Another thing, ALL of the boards are point A to point B, so once the first person reaches the end, that's it, game over. Since they tossed Mario Party 9's car mechanic, I thought the boards would return to the typical loop style...I was sorely disappointed.

As with most Mario Party games, MPIT's minigames are a blast. The game's 80+ minigames are all unique and come in many shapes and forms. The "general" minigames are what you'd expect from a typical Mario Party game. While they're all very fun, they're starting to seem too repetitive from other Mario Party seems like there's always a racing game, there's always an ice game, there's always a lassoing game, so on and so forth. The "boss" minigames pits you against one of Bowser's minions, the "puzzle" minigames are (obviously) widely puzzle based, and the "extra" minigames use some of the 3DS' lesser-used features, such as the microphone and AR cards. As I mentioned before, there is a wide variety of minigames, and yes, they're all very fun, it just seems like the minigames are getting too repetitive at this point.

Most Mario Party games always require a certain degree of skill, but they mostly require a big degree of luck, especially in the later titles. That very much applies here. MPIT is very much revolved around the luck factor, but the amount of luck required seems too high. For example, in Mario Party 9 (a game that also widely relied on luck), if I fell into last place, I could always bring in the skill factor and make a comeback. In MPIT, the skill factor is largely absent. Once someone gains a large enough lead, it's pretty much set in stone that that person will be the winner.

Single player can be really first. Trying out each board and each minigame by yourself can be quite a joy, but it eventually starts to feel really tedious, especially on the boards. I didn't mind single player in Mario Party 9, because each round was really snappy and quick and it would be my turn again in no time. However, the computer players in MPIT move painfully slow and it starts to make the boards feel like a chore to complete rather than a party.

Multiplayer is, in my eyes, MPIT's worst feature. It's the worst feature because there is no online play. While I don't mind that the console games don't have online (there's always my family to play with me), there really is no excuse here. This is a game for a handheld console, and not everyone in my family owns a 3DS. In fact, the only other person that owns a 3DS is my brother, and he's not even interested in Mario Party. On top of that, hardly any of my friends own a 3DS, and the ones that do don't care for Mario Party. For a game released on a handheld console, online is mandatory, and this is where MPIT is severely lacking. For this very reason, I have not even been able to try multiplayer, and it's here that the game takes its biggest hit when it comes to the score I give it.

With all that said and done, MPIT does have very pretty graphics. The game looks very similar to Mario Party 9 in the way of graphics, and each of the boards are bursting with color. The 3D is very nice too - it doesn't affect the gameplay at all, so it's mainly there for the effect, but it does provide a nice sense of depth. The music in MPIT is pretty good's nothing compared to Mario Galaxy's majestic orchestra or 3D World's swinging big band, but it's still respectable and there are some clever remixes to be found.

Mario Party: Island Tour is not a bad game. It's fun while it lasts, but the lack of online multiplayer harms the game in many ways and single player feels like a chore at times. It's definitely not worth the $40 price tag, but if it drops to $20 or $30, I would recommend picking it up.

-BOARDS: 8/10
-OVERALL (not an average): 6/10 (or 3/5)
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Showing 1-3 of 3 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Jan 7, 2014 4:16:48 PM PST
excellent review. i definitely agree that they should've put in online play, that alone would've made me buy it! if they at least thrown in online play for minigames, i still would've been happy...

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 8, 2014 9:54:51 PM PST
Thanks for the response! I know at first glance it seems like I'm mindlessly bashing Nintendo and it seems unfair that I said such harsh words regarding the multiplayer, but if their inability to include online PREVENTS me from trying this mode, why should I score it well? I don't mind the console games not having online because I can play with my sisters and my dad...but there are only two 3DS's in the house, and the other one is owned by a none-MP fan.

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 10, 2014 5:23:59 PM PST
the one thing i can say good about the multiplayer is that you only need a single cartridge, just like Mario Party DS. at least they got that right! i've played multiplayer on MPDS and it worked great.
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