Top positive review
Great for parties and fun for everyone, even non gamers.
24 December 2018
It's worth noting that this is the first Mario party game I have owned, so from that perspective, here are my thoughts.
I was apprehensive at first as there are only 4 boards and you have to unlock one of them, but this wasn't a big deal as the extra modes were where I spent most of my time and playing on the other boards unlocked the fourth one naturally.
The main party mode is excellent with the dice block mechanic adding a nice amount of strategy to the chaos. Items, board elements and star placement keep the game interesting throughout the 60 minute duration for 10 turns - I would recommend sticking to 10 turns as any more than that would get a bit boring for most people.
River survival is a great break from the competition as it's a cooperative mode, the river itself has a lot of variety in its layout and although there are only 10 minigames, they only repeat near the end and only if you make it that far - It doesn't get too repetitive unless you play it multiple times in a row.
Soundstage is a very funny mode akin to guitar hero or rhythm paradise, the motion controls are accurate and almost make you dance to the music! I would recommend trying a remix for a good challenge (or added hilarity). This only has 10 minigames too, but they are mixed up by changing the speed, which makes a big difference in a rhythm game.
Partner party is a great twist on the board game format with teams of two people who can plan their moves at the same time. It's a great way to mix up the gameplay, though the random elements can interfere a bit too much at times. In my experience, it gave everyone a chance to make a comeback, and seeing the player in the lead getting overtaken was often amusing.
There are some other modes too, Toad's rec room includes some crazy dual-switch games that are incredible tech demos. Unfortunately I couldn't use this as I don't have access to another switch or another copy of the game.
The real star of this game though are the minigames, they are very varied and make full use of the joycon controllers with motion, hd rumble, button control and controller orientation creating a lot of unique situations. Unfortunately, pro controllers and handheld mode are not supported for this reason; this is a TV and tabletop mode game only.
Mariothon and square off let you play through sets of minigames if you want to get straight into the action without a board, they're great for quick games too. There is also a mode to play any minigames you want, which is a nice addition.
I did not try online or solo, though I cannot imagine it being nearly as fun as local play - I can confidently say that this is not a game to buy if you don't want to play locally with friends.
In conclusion, this is easily one of the best party games on switch, up there with smash, ultimate chicken horse and overcooked 2. The sheer variety of game modes and minigames makes this fun for a good few hours on each game night and by the time we bring it out again a week or two later, the minigames are fresh again. Highly recommended.