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Mario Party 9 Review: A Fun Game For You And Your Friends

Mario Party 9 Review: A Fun Game For You And Your Friends


Mario Party 9 Review

Mario Party 9
Nintendo Wii

Opening Statement

It was 13 years ago that Mario Party first released. I was 13 years old at the time when some friends of mine and I rented the first Mario Party title. I can remember late nights and a lot of laughter coming from playing that game. It was certainly a fun game to play with your friends with all the ways you could compete against each other. This was the first time I’ve played a Mario Party title since then and I couldn’t wait to start playing it.

About The Game

Mario Party 9 is a game full of competition throughout a large amount of mini-games for you to play. I will say at the outset that the game is to be played with a “Party” of friends though it is not necessary as it does feature a solo mode for single play. I started out playing solo mode and while you can immediately see why the game is more fun with people, the computer can still be an entertaining challenge for you, but it’s just not the same thing. I’m not saying you won’t enjoy the game in solo mode, for there are more than enough games that are fun for you to enjoy. There is also plenty for you to do and unlock as you make your way through the solo part of the game. Still, once you have friends over, force them to play this game with you because it increases the enjoyment tenfold.

In addition to solo mode you will be able to choose mini-games to play. You will need to play through and beat them to unlock additional mini-games, but they have a good amount that you can find enjoyable. This is especially true for the mini-games in which get you a high score or have time trials for you to beat. Records are kept in this game allowing you to go after additional high scores or improve on your top times. This does increase the enjoyment for those who are playing by themselves.

In addition to all the mini-games that you unlock, there is a museum full of other un-lockable treats. As you play the game through any mode you will earn “Party Points.” These points are to be collected and used on items that you will find in the museum. Some of the more important items are additional stages, including my favorite, the master difficulty. Those who need a much higher challenge can unlock it by purchasing the master difficulty with those points that you’ve earned.

When playing either Party or Solo mode, you will play in selected stages where you and up to 3 others, player or computer, will compete to earn the most mini-stars on the map. Everyone will role a dice to see how many spaces forward they will go. You want to be careful not to land on some spaces or going past negative mini-stars. There are both positive and negative mini-stars on the map that you can collect. You will also come across different types of dice, such as dice that will only roll a 0 or a 1, a 1, 2 or 3 and a 4, 5 or 6. So there is also some strategy in saving your special dice for certain circumstances. Say you are near the end and you don’t want to roll a 4 and get those negative stars ahead. That’s when you will want to pull out your 1, 2 or 3 dice if you had collected it along the way. Also, there will be obstacles along the way that make things even more interesting and provide for more fun, excitement and strategy when rolling the dice.

When playing on one of the stages in Party or Solo mode, even if you are the best and dominate throughout by collecting the most mini-stars in the game, it’s never a safe bet that by the end of the game you will be the winner. Before you get to the end of a stage for that final boss battle, the game usually gets challenging by placing numerous Bowser icons or negative mini stars on the map. So if you have indeed led the way the entire game and by luck of the dice you roll right into a Bowser icon or negative mini stars, you could, just like that, find yourself in last place. Basically, you can just play your way through a stage and not worry about how well you do until you get to the final boss battle. Once you are there, if you come out on top in the boss battle, chances are, you will be the winner overall. That isn’t always the case, but the roll of the dice can certainly dictate the outcome of a lot of these matches.

Bonus mini-stars are randomly handed out at the end of each stage for things that where done during that stage. Those who win the most mini-games will get some mini-stars. Those who land on a certain space the most times will get random mini-stars. It is those variables that can help push the tide back towards the one who performed best overall during the entire stage before landing on a block that took half their mini-stars away, or a situation where Bowser evened out the amount of stars among all, giving everyone the same amount of mini-stars.

Game play – AI – Controls

Mario Party 9 is a very friendly pick up and play title. These games are designed to be easy and fun, though sometimes very challenging in the simplest of ways. It all depends on the type of mini-games you come across, but Mario Party 9 certainly provides for good, fun gameplay, that everyone can enjoy. Some of the mini-games can be so stupidly easy to the point of never wanting to play them again. While others can be so stupidly easy, you can’t wait to play them again. Some of them are really dull and make me wonder why such a game is even worthy of being in this title. While a lot of the others are again so silly and easy, yet they are done so well that the challenge is a lot of fun to compete within. You will find games within Mario Party 9 that you will find both entertaining and dull. But most are a lot of fun, and even more so when you’re playing against your friends.

Enjoyment Level – Fun Factor – Final Notes

The amount of fun and enjoyment that I got out of Mario Party 9 is certainly a lot. I enjoy the set up and style of the game that makes it fun to compete in. It’s always a great way to have fun with friends in a game that is easy to pick up and play, even for those who don’t normally play games. My wife, who never plays video games, did play this one with me and enjoyed playing a lot of the mini-games with me. I’m a skilled gamer and she is not, yet some of these games are built in a way that anyone who is quick enough can win. When I am playing in Solo mode, it’s not even close to being the same enjoyable game, but it’s still not bad. It has single player modes for you to enjoy and records for you to set in single player which is a plus. Sadly there is no online mode to play which I feel would have made this title even more of a must-own game.

If you plan to have friends over every now and then to play a game, then you should certainly look into picking up Mario Party 9. When you are not playing with friends, it can keep you entertained enough by unlocking additional material in the game and setting records. One thing I would be wary of is that you could possibly get tired of some of the mini-games fairly quickly. Especially when it comes to a certain few that are really bland to begin with. Other than that, if you have friends over all the time, don’t wait to pick up this game. You will enjoy it.

Score: 7.5/10

Be sure to comment below!

Andrew Stevens Andrew Stevens is a Guest Editor at FanBolt for Gaming and Technology. He has over 8 years of experience working within the gaming industry which includes time at Bethesda Softworks. His unique view of the industry and passion for gaming can be found within each one of his editorials. Andrew also loves PC gaming and enjoys tinkering with new hardware. He also can’t get enough speed when it comes to racing games and doesn’t mind navigating through swarms of bullets in any shmup. He considers Rez as the greatest game ever. Andrew's opinions are his own and do not reflect the opinions of his place of employment.


  1. Great review! The rating seems about right. I played some of Mario Party 8 a while back and might just forget about it and play this instead. It was a good game though, people seem to fawn over Mario Party 1-2 but I think it’s mostly the nostalgia glasses. I like the very many extras the newer games have.


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