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Video Game / Super Mario Party

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Super Mario Party is a video game developed by NDcube and published by Nintendo for the Nintendo Switch in 2018, as the first installment in the series on the system. The game acts as a reboot of the Mario Party series with gameplay that returns to something more in line with the original Hudson Soft entries after ND Cube's previous efforts with the series all experimented with a variety of different board game styles.

Mario and friends are having an argument one day, each of them claiming to be the Super Star. The gang all agree to the age-old tradition of throwing a party to declare a winner, when suddenly Bowser arrives to crash the party with his minions in tow, suggesting that one of them could be the Super Star instead. Bowser also brought Kamek along to join Toad and Toadette as the party's judges. Kamek gets things set up right away by using his magic to create the Party Plaza, filled with all kinds of challenges for the partygoers. Now, with more competitors than ever, everyone sets off to claim the coveted title of Super Star.

The main board game returns to the board-game style established in the original Mario Party games, as four players each navigate a board while playing minigames and collecting coins that they use to buy stars. Certain elements of the formula have been simplified a bit, such as stars now costing only ten coins instead of the original twenty. Each player uses a single Joy-Con controller to play, with no options to use other controllers. Many sections of the game make use of the unique features of the Joy-Con controllers, such as the motion controls and HD Rumble.

Elements from later Mario Party installments appear as well. While players can roll a normal Dice Block with the numbers 1 through 6 on it, character-specific Dice Blocks return from Mario Party: Star Rush, and players can choose to roll them instead on each turn. Also from Star Rush, players can recruit other characters to join their team as Allies, who will not only help increase their rolls, but also allow the player to use their specific Dice Blocks, and help out during certain minigames.

Aside from the main Mario Party mode, the game features a handful of other gameplay modes:

  • River Survival: A four-player cooperative game. Four players are placed in a raft headed down a river, and the objective is to reach the goal before the timer runs out. Two players are placed on both sides of the raft, and can only paddle to steer the raft in the opposite direction of the side that they are on. The four players must work together to control the raft and navigate the river as quickly as possible while avoiding various obstacles. Along the way, the team can collect mini-game balloons for chances to play cooperative mini-games to add extra seconds to the clock. How much time they earn is determined by how well they perform in these mini-games. The river has a variety of branching paths with different routes to take, so players will have to play this mode multiple times if they wish to see everything.
  • Sound Stage: A collection of motion-controlled rhythm mini-games. In the main mode, three mini-games are selected at random, and the four players must collect as many points as possible by moving their Joy-Con controllers with the correct timing. The player that collects the most points once all of the mini-games are completed is the winner.
  • Partner Party: A different take on the board game mode. Players are divided into two teams of two players each, and the teams must work together to collect more Stars than their rival team. While the objective remains the same as in Mario Party mode, the board navigation mechanics take their inspiration from the Toad Scramble mode in Mario Party: Star Rush. Both players on a team roll their Dice Blocks at once, and from there, they can move around the board in any direction they wish. Players can achieve bonuses by cooperating with their partner, such as rolling the same number on their Dice Blocks, or landing on the same space. Additionally, players must land directly on the Star Space in order to purchase a Star. The team who has collected more Stars at the end of the allotted turns wins.
  • Challenge Road: A single-player mode where one player navigates through a series of Worlds by playing and winning mini-games.

The game features a mode which takes emphasis on "dual screen" gameplay, allowing players to take part in local multiplayer across two Nintendo Switch systems. There is also a dedicated area known as Toad's Rec Room with a few special minigames that can be enhanced by connecting two Nintendo Switch systems together. Toad and Toadette return as hosts, while Kamek also serves as a host when characters land on a bad luck space.

Super Mario Party is the first Mario Party game to incorporate fully-playable online multiplayer modes. At launch, players with an active Nintendo Switch Online subscription could take part in the Online Mariothon, where they would play five pre-selected minigames against other players around the world and compete for the highest overall score. On April 27th, 2021, the game received an update allowing players to play entire board games in both Mario Party and Partner Party modes with up to four players online, as well as access the majority of the minigames in Free Play mode.

This game provides examples of:

  • Animal Talk: Donkey Kong and Diddy Kong both speak in monkey noises, which are then translated into human language separately.
    Donkey Kong: Ooo! Oook ook! (I'm Donkey Kong! Got any bananas?)
    Diddy Kong: Eee! Eee ee ee! (I'm a tree-climbing champ!)
  • Anti-Frustration Features:
    • Where a player lands after their dice roll, what a space does, and how far they are from the star are immediately apparent at all times. Additionally, players can practice minigames on the minigame screen without having to go to a separate screen, and the minigame won't start until all players are ready.
    • Failing a minigame enough times in Challenge Road will result in a Toady giving you the option to skip it and move on to the next.
  • Apologetic Attacker: While Kamek normally laughs at players unlucky enough to land on his Bad Luck spaces, if that player happens to be either Bowser or Bowser Jr., he will fearfully apologize for causing them problems, but as it's his job to penalize the players, he has no choice but to go through with it.
  • Artificial Stupidity: If a human player partners up with a CPU partner in Partner Party, they have absolutely no way to influence their partner's actions. The CPU will use the team's items regardless of whether the player wants them to, or sometimes won't use items when it would be helpful to. The player also cannot pick what Dice Block their ally uses, making it impossible to strategize what kind of number combinations they want to aim for.
  • Auto-Scrolling Level: Follow the Money has players navigating a course as the screen moves forward constantly, pushing them forward. Each time the minigame is played, different types of enemies will appear that the players must avoid in order to hold onto the coins they collect, which appear at different points throughout the course.
  • Banana Peel: Trip Navigator is a minigame where player must race to the center of the stage, but banana peels are scattered all over the place, and will slow down any players that slip on them.
  • Be Careful What You Wish For: In the opening cutscene, Bowser hires Kamek to join Toad and Toadette's group of judges in order to keep things fair for him and the other minions, to which Kamek warns him to be careful what he wishes for. During the board games, Bowser is not exempt from Kamek's punishments if he lands on any Bad Luck spaces.
  • Blackout Basement: The Co-op minigame Fireplace Race takes place in a pitch-black room with only a fireplace for illumination. Four players must work together to use torches lit by the fireplace to light all 30 candles in the room as quickly as possible. Occasionally, the room will be momentarily illuminated by lightning strikes.
  • Block Puzzle: Toad's Rec Room contains a minigame called Puzzle Hustle, where the objective is to move your character around to slide large pieces of character sprites from previous Mario games around a small playing field and put them all together to build the complete sprite. Characters can both push and pull each piece, but the pieces cannot move through each other, so they must be positioned in ways that the other pieces can be moved around them. This mode can be played with multiple players, and if multiple characters push or pull a piece in the same direction simultaneously, the pieces can be moved faster.
  • Book Ends: During the opening cutscene, there is a left-to-right pan shot showing each of Mario's friends celebrating the prospect of another party, ending with Mario looking over all of them with his arms crossed and nodding his head in approval. During the ending awards ceremony there is a similar shot featuring all of the playable characters, good and bad, that ends with Bowser (or Bowser Jr., if the player is playing as Bowser) overlooking everyone with the same approval.
  • Boring, but Practical: Certain characters have Dice Blocks that won't earn them any above-average rolls, but can reliably give decent rolls with little risk.
    • Mario's Dice Block is very similar to the normal Dice Block, but the 2 and 4 faces are replaced by 3.
    • Daisy's Dice Block only has the numbers 3 and 4 on it. It has the highest minimum roll of any character Dice Block in the game, but is also tied for the lowest maximum roll.
    • Shy Guy's Dice Block is similar to Daisy's. It has a higher chance of rolling a 4, but does have an off-chance of rolling a 0.
  • Button Mashing: Pull It Together is a tug-of-war minigame where players pull their side of the rope by mashing the rightmost button on their Joy-Con as quickly as they can. As this is a Team minigame, any ally characters will join the game as well, giving a noticeable advantage to players who have more.
  • Call-Back: The opening cutscene begins very similarly to the one from the original Mario Party, with an overhead zoom of Mario and friends arguing over who is the Super Star in an open field.
  • City of Gold: The unlockable fourth board, Kamek's Tantalizing Tower (Tantalizing Tower Toys in Partner Party) is a palatial city literally made of gold built at the top of a skyscrapper. It is unique among the other boards for having the price of the Star change each time someone buys one: It can cost 5, 10 or 15 coins.
  • Console Cameo: Aside from the Joy-Con controllers that appear during certain minigames to demonstrate the controls, Senseless Census has some Toads that can be seen playing Super Mario Party on a Nintendo Switch in tabletop mode.
  • Co-Op Multiplayer:
    • The River Survival mode features four players working together to row a raft down a river within a time limit. Along the way, they can play minigames for chances to earn more time, all of which place the four players on a single team.
    • Partner Party is a board game mode where the players are divided into two teams of two. Players must work together with their partner to defeat the other team.
  • Developer's Foresight:
    • Almost every NPC has unique dialogue when approached by Bowser or Bowser Jr. Among other things, path-blocking characters are polite and apologetic, "minion" characters in the Party Plaza shower them with compliments instead of trash-talking them, and Kamek will be visibly quaking with fear if either of them land on a Bad Luck Space. This also affects the game's ending, where Bowser steps up to congratulate the new Super Star. If Bowser himself is the winner, Bowser Jr. appears in the cutscene instead, with unique dialogue.
    • The Rhythm minigame Time to Shine usually has Waluigi act as the leader who shows what poses the players must strike. If any of the players are playing as him, the leader will instead be Luigi, Peach, Daisy, or Rosalina.
  • Difficult, but Awesome: Certain characters have Dice Blocks that have a high chance of rolling poor numbers, but also have above-average chances of rolling great numbers.
    • Luigi's Dice Block has a 1/2 chance of rolling a 1, but compensates with a maximum roll of 7.
    • Wario and Boo's Dice Blocks have a 2/3 chance of getting a great roll (Wario has four 6s, while Boo has a 50/50 split between 5 and 7), but also have a 1/3 chance of not only moving no spaces, but losing two coins in the process.
    • Bowser has an extreme case with his Dice Block. At its worst, it can take away three coins. At its best, it can let him move ten spaces.
    • Donkey Kong's Dice Block has a 2/3 chance of not moving him at all, but the remaining 1/3 chance will let him rocket ahead ten spaces.
    • Diddy Kong and Dry Bones have Dice Blocks that have a 50/50 split between poor numbers and great ones. 0 or 7 in Diddy's case, 1 or 6 for Dry Bones.
  • Discontinuity Nod: Birdo has a piece of dialogue where she states that this is "the 11th party", referring to the previous home console Mario Party games, while seemingly disregarding the portable and arcade installments.
  • Don't Wake the Sleeper: In Don't Wake Wiggler, players take turns petting a sleeping Wiggler's head to score points. Players can pet it up to five times on their turn, and score one point each time, but if Wiggler wakes up after being pet, the player who woke him up will lose all of their points. As the Wiggler gets closer to waking up, it will start having negative reactions to being pet, such as Cross-Popping Veins, or briefly opening one eye.
  • Drop the Hammer: In Hammer and Sic 'Em, each player is given a hammer where two teams of two players must pop the balloons on the heads of their rivals by whacking them with squeaky hammers. Any allies that have joined the players also enter the fray, and can attack their rivals.
  • Easter Egg: This game has a minigame called Rhythm and Bruise, where the players bop plastic Monty Moles in time to the rhythm. If you play as Monty Mole in Rhythm and Bruise, Monty Mole will spend the entire minigame with a panicked expression and look away when he hits the plastic moles.
  • Enemy Mine: Since any character can recruit any other character as an ally, and the game includes both good guys and bad guys to play as, it is entirely possible for arch-enemies to team up to win the game. Specific characters even have unique dialogue for being recruited by specific other characters, such as Bowser Jr. only agreeing to help Mario for today, or Peach having a similar reaction to being recruited by Bowser or Bowser Jr.
  • Excuse Plot: All characters (including, with surprising sportsmanship, Bowser and his minions) compete against each other to become the Super Star and, in the process, gather the fabled Gems that reward different virtues, so they're all placed in the Party Plaza.
  • Extendo Boxing Glove: In Train in Pain, each player drives around an arena in a small train with a large boxing glove mounted on the front. The objective is to eliminate the opposing players by firing the glove to punch them from behind and send them flying out of the arena. Any ally characters that players have recruited will ride their team's train in an extra cart on the back, effectively granting that player an extra hit point.
  • Fantastic Fireworks: The minigame Isthmus Be the Way tasks four players with carrying a bomb full of fireworks to a cannon at the end of a series of land bridges separating each player. Once the bomb reaches the end of the course, it is loaded into the cannon and fired into the sky, where it explodes into the shape of a Super Star.
  • Fishing Minigame:
    • Rumble Fishing (not to be confused with the minigame of the same name from Mario Party 4) places four players atop a cloud floating above the ocean, and the objective is to use a fishing rod to catch a larger Dragoneel than anyone else. The players can move around to search for Dragoneels under the water, and when the Joy-Con rumbles, they will know they've found one. The stronger the rumble is, the larger the Dragoneel is.
    • In Net Worth, four players take hold of one corner of a large fishing net in a river with a school of Cheep Cheeps swimming by. The players must work together to catch as many Cheep Cheeps as possible by simultaneously raising the net when as many Cheep Cheeps as possible are above it. They get 30 seconds to catch as many as they can, and receive a better rank based on how many they catch.
  • Gameplay Grading: The Co-op minigames award the team of four players with a letter rank depending on how well they do, with S being the highest and C being the lowest. In River Survival mode, the time bonus that the team receives will be greater depending on how high they rank.
  • Giant Enemy Crab: In "Smash and Crab" the three-player team controls a giant hammer-wielding crab mech, and must crush the remaining lone player with one of the hammers. One player controls the crab's body and can move the mech left and right, while the other two each control one of the hammers and can slam it down with a press of the button.
  • Giant Squid: A Mega Blooper appears as a board hazard on Megafruit Paradise and Watermelon Walkabout, where it stalks players crossing the bridge between Present Island and Watermelon Island. In Mario Party mode, there are certain Event spaces on the bridge that trigger the Blooper's attack, while in Partner Party, every space on the bridge has a roughly 1/3 chance of activating it. Regardless, any players that get attacked by the Blooper will be sent flying back to start.
  • Go-Karting with Bowser: Unlike most other Mario Party games where Bowser spends his time bullying the players, here he and his minions join the games on equal grounds with the other playable characters.
  • Graceful Loser:
    • At the end of each game, the losing players will all applaud for the winner.
    • In the final awards ceremony, when the Super Star is crowned, Bowser approaches the pedestal they're standing atop and congratulates them for their victory, before promising to step up his game for the next party. If Bowser himself becomes the Super Star, Bowser Jr. will take his place and cheer for his papa.
  • Grenade Hot Potato: The minigame Lit Potato sees each player along with any ally characters they have all standing in a circle, with certain characters being given bombs. If a player has a bomb in their hands, they can pass it to the player next to them clockwise by pressing a button. When the bombs explode, the character holding them will be eliminated, and this keeps going until only one team remains.
  • Hailfire Peaks: Megafruit Paradise combines Palmtree Panic with Level Ate, not unlike Yoshi's Tropical Island from the original Mario Party.
  • Herding Mission: The Co-op minigame Penguin Pushers tasks four players with guiding a flock of penguins out of a small ice rink through the exit at the bottom of the screen. The players run around the rink, and the penguins move away from nearby players. The minigame ends once all of the penguins have left the rink, and the players' rank is determined by how long it took.
  • Heroic Mime: Mario and Luigi have no dialogue of their own. During scenes where the other characters would have dialogue, such as when they are recruited as allies or appear in the Party Plaza, Toad will speak on their behalf.
  • High-Five Left Hanging: If a team of two or more players wins a minigame, the participating players must shake their Joy-Con to high-five the other players, which will earn them all a small bonus. However, there is only a small time window to do so, and if any players choose not to do it, the players who did get ready for the high five will look at them with a dumbfounded reaction, and they won't get the bonus.
  • Hub Level: Once the players select their characters, they are thrown into the Party Plaza, where player 1 can walk around freely with the other three characters in a line behind them. The other playable characters appear around the plaza, and can replace CPU players if the player chooses to talk to them. There are other NPCs that the player can talk to, and they can also approach various places to select the mode they want to play.
  • Invisible Anatomy: Zigzagged with Goomba. Sometimes it holds objects on its head, other times it grabs them using its mouth, but there are times when it can "hold" items as normal as if it has invisible hands.
  • "Jar of Jellybeans" Contest: The minigame Senseless Census places each player in a train car full of Toads, and each player can move around separately to count how many Toads are in the car. Many of the Toads are seated at the various booths in the car doing different things, but they will also leave their seats to walk around the car. Players press the buttons on their Joy-Con to count either up or down, and once time runs out, the player who picked the number closest to the correct answer is the winner.
  • Jump Scare: In Don't Wake Wiggler, once Wiggler has been pet too many times, his sleeping face is abruptly replaced with his angry red face, and accompanied with a loud train whistle that replaces the quiet ambience of the mini-game itself.
  • Last-Second Photo Failure: In Slaparazzi, a red Koopa Troopa approaches the circular arena to stand on one of five surrounding pedestals, and takes a photo of the four players from wherever they're standing. The players must run over to stand in front of them to be in the picture, but the character closest to the middle of the frame will get the most points, so the players are encouraged to slap their rivals out of the way to take center stage. After each photo is taken, the results are shown onscreen, which typically have the characters slapping each other instead of properly posing for the photo.
  • Level Ate: Megafruit Paradise and its Partner Party counterpart, Watermelon Walkabout take place atop a series of four islands on a beach. Two of these islands happen to consist of a giant watermelon, and a giant pineapple. The remaining two islands aren't left out either, as certain tiles of the boards are large oranges that players use as stepping stones between the higher and lower platforms.
  • Lighter and Softer: Previous Mario Party games had Bowser as an actively malicious antagonist who takes pleasure in causing misery for Mario and friends, but here, Bowser steps down from that role to join Mario for some friendly competition. The antagonist role is instead filled by Kamek, who is much less intimidating or mean than his boss was. The amount of violence in the game is also lesser than previous games, with fewer minigames requiring the players to directly attack each other.
  • Lucky Seven: Diddy Kong's Dice Block has a 50/50 chance of rolling a 0 or a 7.
  • Made O' Gold: The Golden Dash Mushroom item is a better version of the regular Dash Mushroom, adding five spaces to the roll of anyone who uses it, while the lesser Dash Mushroom only adds three.
  • Mighty Glacier: Some Dice Blocks have high odds of rolling great numbers, but comes at the cost of possibly not moving or losing coins. Any faces that give or take away coins also make the user move 0 spaces.
    • Bowser's Dice Block has fantastic numbers like 8,9, and 10, but also has a 1/3 of losing three coins instead of moving, and the remaining face is a 1.
    • Donkey Kong's Dice Block comes with two 10 faces, but the remaining sides don't let him move at all, though one of them does at least give him +5 coins.
    • Downplayed with Diddy Kong's Dice Block, which comes with only three sides of 7, but only 2 sides are 0 and 1 side is for +2 coins.
  • The Millstone: In King Bob-omb's Powderkeg Mine and Gold Rush Mine, it's possible to temporarily recruit a Bob-omb as an ally by passing its space in the northern section of the board, but this should be avoided, as their Dice Block deducts from the player's roll instead of adding to it.
  • New Game Plus: Upon completing the mode Challenge Road, the player will not only receive the Passion Gem (one of the Plot Coupons necessary to clear the game), but also unlock a master variant of the mode; in it, the clear conditions of the minigames are more difficult, requiring a greater mastery than the one already necessary to complete the mode in its normal version.
  • Palmtree Panic:
    • Megafruit Paradise takes place on a series of tropical islands. Some of these islands happen to be giant fruit.
    • Worlds 3 and 5 of Challenge Road have the map set on a tropical beach. In the background, different characters can be seen having fun in the sun in different ways, and various aquatic enemies can be seen, such as Cheep Cheeps and Huckit Crabs.
  • Pie in the Face: In the minigame Pie Hard, players divide into two teams of two and grab cream pies from the tables behind them, and throw them at their opponents to score points. Any pies that hit a player will cause that character to get pie cream all over them.
  • Plot Coupon: The Gems awarded for completing all the main modes in the game. Each Gem represents a virtue: Tenacity, Spirit, Love, Courage and Passion; and placing them all in the Super Star's ceremony plaza unlocks the game's ending.
  • Pokémon Speak: Yoshi's dialogue consists entirely of him saying his name. Translations are provided afterward.
    Yoshi: "Yoshi! Yoshi! (We'll win by working together!)"
  • Poison Mushroom: All numbers in Bob-omb's dice block are negative, so the number gotten from it will subtract from the number obtained by the dice of the player's character.
  • Pop Quiz:
    • In the 1-vs.-3 minigame Drop Quiz, three players watch a video showing a series of characters running across the screen and carrying different kinds of fruit, and must remember as much of the video as possible. The remaining solo player then gets to choose one of three questions based on what was just shown. Each member of the team must then move their character onto one of the panels, each having a different answer on them. Once time runs out, each panel except for the correct one will open, causing any characters standing on them to fall down a hole and be eliminated. If any member of the team can correctly answer all three questions, the team wins the minigame.
    • Rattle and Hmmm is a minigame that makes use of the Joy-Con's HD Rumble feature. The players will be shown three different characters, who will each perform an action that causes the Joy-Con to rumble in a different way. Once all three have been shown, the controllers will rumble in the same way as one of the characters shown. Each player then picks which of the three characters they think made the same rumble. Players who pick the correct answer earlier will earn more points than their rivals.
    • Absent Minded shows the players a group of eight images of different characters, though the images are hidden in certain ways, such as being pixelated, scrambled, or only shown one at a time. The players have a selection of three character options, and must select which of the three is not included above.
    • Birdo appears periodically in the Party Plaza and asks trivia questions about the game whenever player 1 speaks to her. Answering her questions correctly can award the player with things like stickers and Party Points.
  • Pressure Plate: The minigame Fetch Quest (yes, it's called like that) requires all four players to team up and carry all nine diamonds placed in their underground area into the pedestals placed at the center. The problem is that some of the diamonds are locked behind barriers that can only be opened as long as their associated switches are held pressed. Thus, one player has to stand on a switch to keep it pressed so another player can get the diamonds placed beyond the now-open barrier.
  • Promoted to Playable: Goomba, Monty Mole, and Pom Pom all make their playable Mario Party debut in this game. Bowser is also playable for the first time outside of Bowser Party from Mario Party 10.
  • Racing Minigame:
    • In Trike Harder, four players ride small tricycles and have to pedal their way to the finish line, which is only a short distance in front of them. To pedal their trikes forward, players have to make pedaling motions with their Joy-Con.
    • In Barreling Along, each player stands atop a barrel, and must be the first to roll the barrel to the finish line at the end of the course. Players hold their Joy-Con sideways, and tilt forward to roll forward, and tilt to the sides to steer. The course includes obstacles that slow down the racers, such as water puddles and thick grass, but there are also speed boosters that can be run over.
    • In Rowboat Uprising, two teams of two players, along with all of their respective allies board a raft and must row to the finish line ahead before the rival team. Each player can only paddle on one side of the raft, so they must coordinate with their teammates to steer the boat around obstacles, such as buoys and a mechanical Cheep Cheep.
  • Rank Inflation: Zigzagged. In the Japanese and English versions of the game, the possible ranks that can be achieved in the co-op minigames are S, A and B. But in the French, Spanish and Italian versions, they're replaced with A, B and C respectively. Thus, depending on the language version on the game, there may or may not be an inflation.
  • Remixed Level: Each of the Mario Party boards gets a remixed layout, as well as a different name, when played in Partner Party. This is done to adapt the co-op gameplay, where both players in each team move at the same time in each turn and do so through a grid-based playable area:
    • Whomp's Domino Ruins becomes Domino Ruins Treasure Hunt, and there's only one chest in the north instead of three, but players can only claim the Star within if they land on the nearby space after collecting the Key found elsewhere on the board.
    • King Bob-omb's Powderkeg Mine becomes Gold Rush Mine. The central area's countdown is increased from 5 to 10, but the Event Spaces that make the counter go down are now hidden, and players that accidentally land on them spin a roulette to make the counter go down any number from 0 to 5. Additionally, the gold deposits on the western portion of the board now contain Stars, but players must grab one of the Pickaxes on the board before they can dig for them, and the mine carts no longer transport players around the board, instead featuring Bob-ombs who will ride through the tunnels to look for items if the player pay them coins.
    • Megafruit Paradise becomes Watermelon Walkabout, and most islands gain additional middle platforms to reach the higher areas more easily. This version of Watermelon Island has a free star for players to claim, but it cannot be reached unless a player lands on one of the event spaces after collecting the Silver Pick over on Pineapple Island first.
    • Kamek's Tantalizing Tower becomes Tantalizing Tower Toys, and the southern half adds a zigzagged path layout to its center. Toadette returns to moving around the board every time a Star is bought, unlike the Mario Party version of the board, where she stays at the top for the entire game. Additionally, the capsule machine now dispenses prizes for players instead of changing the Star price, but in order to claim one of these prizes, one player must buy an item from the shop first, which will also come with a Capsule Ticket.
  • Revisiting the Roots: After seven years of the franchise experimenting with alternate formulas, the game returns to the non-linear board game mechanic where players navigate around the board to search for stars and collect coins, and a minigame is played between rounds. Nintendo even describes it as a "complete relaunch" or "complete refresh" of the series.
  • Rhythm Game: Sound Stage features a variety of Rhythm minigames that all utilize the Joy-Con motion controls. Each of the minigames require players to move the Joy-Con in certain ways with the correct timing to hit different targets, with players scoring better based on the accuracy of their timing.
  • Ring Out: The minigame Soak or Croak has the four players run around an arena located inside a water fountain. Each player is equipped with a water gun that they can fire at their opponents to push them away, but it can only hold a limited amount of water, and must be reloaded by shaking the Joy-Con. Any players that get pushed out of the fountain are eliminated, and the last player standing wins.
  • Roaring Rapids: River Survival is a mode where all characters have to travel together across a network of rapids while avoiding obstacles (as getting hit will subtract the current time limit). From time to time, they have to play a Co-Op minigame to win and gather extra seconds to the aforementioned time limit. The rapids' path fork into many branches, and the characters have to pick one. It's necessary to play this mode several times to take all possible paths and earn one of the Gems that unlock the game's ending.
  • Secret Character: There are four playable characters that can be unlocked by meeting certain conditions in the game. Once the conditions are met, the character will appear in the Party Plaza, and will become playable characters after the player talks to them.
    • Dry Bones appears randomly after playing certain modes.
    • Donkey Kong appears after three different end levels are cleared in River Survival.
    • Diddy Kong and Pom Pom are both unlocked after making enough progress in Challenge Road. Diddy Kong appears at the end of World 2, while Pom Pom appears midway through World 5.
  • Shell Game: Lost in the Shuffle has Toad set up a series of matryoshka dolls modeled after the five colored Toads, encased within five large blue Toad dolls. The five dolls are then shuffled around, and once they stop, each player gets to pick one doll. The player that picks the doll containing the most smaller dolls is the winner.
  • Shock and Awe:
    • In Lightning Round, players are given fifteen seconds to collect as many coins as they can as they appear around the arena, but they must grab them while avoiding electric sparks created when the Sumo Bros. above stomp on their platforms.
    • Half the Battle contains Amps that appear as enemies that must be avoided. Any characters that touch them will be stunned with an electric shock.
  • Shooting Gallery:
    • In Block and Load, players are divided into two teams, and take control of cannons that they fire at a structure built from wooden blocks. Three players each use weaker cannons that can be fired more rapidly but should be used to remove blocks individually, while the remaining solo player gets a single cannon that is much more powerful and can take out entire groups of blocks in a single shot, but takes much longer to reload. Whichever team can completely knock over all the blocks before the other will win the minigame.
    • The minigame Home On The 'Rang has all four players throw Boomerangs at the Pokeys that move through a sandy corral in the desert. Hitting a Pokey's round segment yields one point, while hitting the head yields three. Each Pokey has a different height and speed. All four players have to team up by coordinating the timing of their Boomerang throws to get as many points as possible before time runs out.
  • Slippy-Slidey Ice World: The minigame Penguin Pushers takes place atop a frozen ice rink in a snowy tundra. The four players slide around on the ice as they work together to corral the penguins into the rink's exit.
  • Solid Clouds: The minigame Air to a Fortune takes place atop a series of nine clouds floating up in the sky, with each player standing on one of the clouds in the four cardinal directions. In each round, players can jump to one of the clouds adjacent to theirs to collect the coins on it by pressing the button in the direction they want to jump, but if multiple players try to jump to the same cloud, they will bump into each other, and none of them will get to claim the coins.
  • Songs in the Key of Panic: When only three turns remain, the board's theme shifts into a higher-pitched, slightly more dramatic version.
  • Sphere Factor: The minigame Bumper Brawl has each player rolling around an arena encased in a larger plastic ball, and the goal is to push all of the opposing players out of the arena by bumping into them.
  • Spoiler Opening: The opening cutscene shows all of the secret playable characters together with the default ones, making it immediately clear who all of them are.
  • Stopped Numbering Sequels: This is the first home console Mario Party game to do away with the numbering system that all the previous ones used, a trend that will continue with the next game, Mario Party Superstars. Curiously, Birdo still acknowledges that this is the 11th party, following Mario Party 10.
  • Tablecloth Yank: In the Rhythm minigame Clearing the Table, each player has a table topped with a tablecloth of their player color, and a pile of glasses are dropped atop the table in time with the music. When the pile is complete, on the next beat, the players must quickly pull their Joy-Con toward themself to yank the tablecloth out from under the glasses. If they yank with the correct timing, the cloth will come out without disturbing the glasses at all, and that player will earn more points. Players can anticipate the beat they must yank the cloth by noting the rhythm at which the glasses land on each other.
  • Tank Goodness: One of the minigames in Toad's Rec Room is Shell Shocked Deluxe, a reimagining of the similarly-named minigame from Mario Party 2. Each participating player drives a tank modelled after a large Koopa shell with an overhead camera angle, and must score more points than their opponents by firing cannonballs at their opponents. If the players use two Nintendo Switch systems, they can play a 2-vs.-2 battle with four players, and place both systems together to create a larger battle map.
  • Temple of Doom: Whomp's Domino Ruins and its Partner Party counterpart, Domino Ruins Treasure Hunt, are the first board in their respective modes. The boards take place in an old temple out in the jungle, with images of Whomps engraved into them. The northernmost area of the board has some traps that the players can activate that can send rolling boulders their ways, and Whomps appear at certain points to block their progress unless they can pay coins.
  • Timed Mission: The entirety of River Survival has all four players needing to race to one of the finish lines at the end of the river before a timer runs out. At the start, the players have nowhere near enough time to reach the end, so along the way, they must collect minigame balloons, then perform well in the minigames they activate to earn more seconds. If the timer runs out, the game ends and all players lose.
  • Token Evil Teammate: Toad, Toadette, and Kamek act as the judges in the board games. While Toad and Toadette are supportive to the partygoers, giving them instructions and awarding them with stars, Kamek instead prefers to harass the participants with different punishments whenever they land on his Bad Luck spaces.
  • Underground Level:
    • King Bob-omb's Powderkeg Mine and Gold Rush Mine are boards located in a gold mine deep below the earth. The northeast and southwest corners of the board have minecart stations that players can ride between, and the easternmost part of the board contains a gold deposit where players can dig for coins if they land on the correct spaces.
    • The Co-op minigame Miner Setbacks tasks all four players with carrying a cart full of crystals through a cave to reach a goal line. The cave contains Warp Pipes with Piranha Plants inside that the team must time their movements past to avoid getting bitten. There are alternate paths that players can take to avoid them, but they tend to be out of the way, and are covered in mud that slows them down.
  • The Unfought: During the game's ending, it seems like Bowser will do something sinister after all the Gems are placed in the ceremony plaza, prompting a Final Boss fight against him. However, he only says some words of encouragement (it's unclear if he changed his mind or merely wanted to pull a leg on everybody), and the celebrations continue as usual, eventually leading to the game's credits.
  • Unlockable Content: Earning Mario Party Points (by way of playing the various game modes) is useful to buy several goodies from the Party Pad in Party Plaza, such as stickers, game tips and music tracks for the Sound Test.
  • Whammy: The minigame Timing is Money has four players performing a Ground Pound on a button with a slot spinning around. When the button is pressed, the slot will stop, and the player will be awarded the number of coins shown, but if they land on the Bob-omb, they will get blown up and lose every coin they have earned up to that point.
  • What Could Possibly Go Wrong?: The description for Wario's Dice Block.
    Sure, there are some downsides, but every other face has a 6! What could go wrong?
  • Wintry Auroral Sky: The minigame Tall Order takes place over a snowy forest with a night sky lit by aurora borealis in the background.