The new co-op mode makes me want to give Super Mario Party a chance


I’m trapped in the Mario Party cycle

Every time Nintendo rolls out a new Mario Party, I wonder if this will be it: if this might finally be a Mario Party game that doesn’t end with my group feeling annoyed at best or downright hostile with each other at worst. I feel like I need to attach a sticky note to the box that says “Don’t believe Mario’s lies.”

I have a glimmer of hope for Super Mario Party both because it’s on the Switch, a system I adore for multiplayer, and because it generally looks all right so far. We’ll see how the dice roll on October 5.

At gamescom, Nintendo is showing off a four-player co-op mode called River Survival. Players work together to steer a raft as it heads down a stream with branching paths. As you collect balloons along the way, you’ll jump into mini-games which can add bonus time to your bank to help you reach the end.

A lot of my frustration in the Mario Party series tends to come from conniving or laborious game boards, so a side mode that lets me quickly play a handful of mini-games without much fuss seems fantastic. Also, I love that the end-of-game recap shows how many times every player paddled. No slackin’.