One of the most fun multiplayer party games I've played was the original Mario Party for N64. Now, the sequel has arrived and it has significantly improved on the original.
If you've never played the original game, the object of the game is very simple. The characters (Mario, Luigi, Peach, Yoshi, Donkey Kong and Wario) must travel across various game boards, collecting Coins and Stars. At the end of each turn, a mini-game is started, involving various feats of quickness, agility and strength. Whoever has the most Stars at the end of the game wins.
There are a lot more mini-games in the sequel and for those who were annoyed about the mini-games that required quickly rotating the Control Stick, don't worry, they have all been removed. Some of the games from the original return. So here is the low-down on the different aspects of the game.
Graphics : 9/10
The graphics in this game are very good. The game boards are very detailled and all look very different. One cool addition to the sequel is that the characters wear different costumes depending on what board they are playing on. For instance, if you're playing in Western Land, all of the characters will sport cowboy hats and boots. The graphics have improved from the original but I have seen much better graphics in other games for the N64.
Sound : 7/10
This area of the game was the most disappointing for me. They are some new musical tracks for the sequel and some tunes are back from the original. Most of the music is a lot less annoying in the sequel. However, most of the sound effects are exactly the same. It would of been nice to have changed the small bits of voice acting for the different characters.
Gameplay : 10/10
This aspect of the game is simply awesome. Before starting a mini-game, there is an explanation screen that details the different buttons that can be used. As an added bonus to the sequel, there is also a practice mode, for new players who aren't familiar with the mini-games. The controls are very intuitive and very easy to learn and those familiar with the moves in the original will be perfectly at ease. Of course, this game is more fun if you play with up to three of your friends but it's still fun to play once in a while by yourself against the computer.
Replayability : 10/10
THE strong point of this game. I never got tired of playing the original until I got the sequel. The original Mario Party was one of the games that I've most replayed in my entire life, right up there with Goldeneye. However, if you play this game against the computer all the time, it will get boring pretty fast, as in most multiplayer games. There are lots of boards and plenty of mini-games for tons of hours of fun.
For those of you who adored the original like I did, this is a must buy. However, this game is a perfect rent for a party, hence the name of the game...
Overall : 9/10
In general, this game improves on all areas of the original, except in the sound effects. As I've stated before, most of the sound effects are exactly the same in the original.
All in all, the best party game there is on the face of the Earth!!!