The Mario Party series has hosted both beloved and unpopular entries across many Nintendo consoles, but which Mario Party game is best?
The Mario Party franchise has nearly a dozen mainline games (and more than 20 total, counting its handheld and arcade offerings). With so many games in the series, there’s no clear consensus on which is the best. But a few Mario Party games stand out above their peers.
Mario Party spans many Nintendo consoles. Debuting on the N64 in 1998, it’s become a staple for the company and its fans. With fast-paced minigames and dice roll-based game boards, Mario Party is easy to grasp, lending itself well to gatherings of various sizes and age ranges.
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For many fans, the original Mario Party games are still best, beating out later releases as examples of what the franchise should be. The first three games are certainly memorable; Mario Party set the stage for the franchise, Mario Party 2 featured unique boards and iconic minigames, and Mario Party 3 included a compelling story mode and boss battles. But other games in the series have managed to surpass these three, due to either the unique gameplay elements they add or the quality of the minigames they feature.
Why Mario Party 6 Is The Best Game In The Series
Mario Party 6 is the best example of these qualities. While its core gameplay remains faithful to the originals and its story mode isn’t as extensive as some of its successors, the unique features it added are still interesting today. Mario Party 6 is best known for its day-night cycle, which influences the goals, movement, and interactions available in its boards and minigames. This keeps gameplay engaging without altering any fundamental mechanics for the worse.
Later games in the franchise failed to do the same, featuring fun minigames but generally growing more gimmicky with time. Mario Party 9 and 10’s car system especially deviated from what made the originals so great, reducing player control and hindering the competitive style the series is known for. While Mario Party went back to its roots for Super Mario Party on Switch, many fans feel its amount of content pales in comparison to older games. After this return to form, it will be interesting to see where the Mario Party franchise goes, but it will be hard to top a mechanic as seamlessly enjoyable as Mario Party 6‘s day-night cycle.
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