I love mini games and board games so Mega Monster Party hit things off well with me right out the gate. It’s a Mario Party styled game aimed at the younger gamer audience. It also uses Airconsole – an app that turns your phone into a game controller. I was weary going in but the implementation is really well done.
There are 40 mini games in all that you can pick up and play straight out the box but the main game mode is the board game version of Mega Monster Party. Here you need to spin a wheel, stolen from the board game Game of Life, and move around the board to be first to reach the game master. After everyone moves you’ll play a random mini game and be awarded coins based on your results. Whoever reaches game master first can buy a minion with their coins (if they have enough) and then the game master teleports somewhere on the map. This repeats until the games turn limit ends. You can define the games length at the start. The end game sees all your minions converted into lives and then its an endless mini game battle. Winner keeps their lives, everyone else loses one. Last one standing wins!
Firstly, you’ll need mobiles to play Mega Monster Party. Airconsole is like a mixture of Jackbox and Playlink. You can either download the app or go to a webpage and type in a room code. That enters you into the game and each mini game will update your mobile screen with bold, chunky controls. I was worried lag would be a factor here but Airconsole works fluidly, seamlessly and without issue. I was genuinely pleasantly surprised at how good it was. There’s no reason why controllers shouldn’t have been the way forward but if it brings non gamers to Mega Monster Party and reduces the need to buy controllers, its a good compromise.
The mini games themselves are a real mixed bag. A few are skill based like spinning timing shots to hit your friends, or jumping over obstacles and that works well with others. The game is always played with 4 characters so if you are in a crowd of 1,2 or 3 – bots will fill the gaps. Unfortunately a lot of the mini games are luck based. These things like hiding behind one of three fences, pressing buttons to see if a pumpkin explodes – and you have no control over the outcome. Strangely this is also where the AI bots seem to get most of their wins too…
Where the game excels most is in the team games and all against one battles. Here, you’ll need to work together to get the spoils like timing jumps, co-ordinating button presses or fending off your rivals with simple movement and timing games. Nothing is ever more than three buttons per game so don’t expect depth, expect accessibility. That does mean that older gamers or whose looking for more skill based mini games will feel a bit bored after a while. That’s because whilst the board game environments, characters and sounds all come across nicely, the depth to grind for being great at loads of mini games simply isn’t required. They are largely so easy or so luck based, you can just disengage your brain for them. My other main criticism is that events on the board game map such as sharing a space with someone as always resolved with a rock, paper scissors game. In principle this is fine but it popped up so often it really slowed the pace of our games down.
I think younger gamers will really enjoy the cutesy creepy vibes of Mega Monster Party. Using Airconsole can help new gamers feel more comfortable with gaming too and all this is a good thing. I think seasoned gamers looking for things that have a little more substance to them though may get a little bored after a while and may look elsewhere. Muppet Party Cruise from the PS2 era is still the gold standard for these games and whilst this has great theming, its gameplay is very light.
Review copy provided by publisher.
Higher Plain Games is part of the Higher Plain Network. If you like what I do, please consider supporting me via Patreon for as little as $1/£1 a month. There are additional perks for supporting me, such as behind-the-scenes content and downloads. You can also share the website or use the affiliate buy now links on reviews. Buying credit from CD Keys using my affiliate link means I get a couple of pence per sale. All your support will enable me to produce better content, more often. Thank you.