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YMMV / Super Monkey Ball

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  • 8.8: Though the first 2 GameCube games have gotten great reviews from IGN (an 8.3 and 9.0 respectively), for some reason the people at IGN downright despise the music and sound effects, citing it as repetitive an uninspired, and giving most games in the franchise at around 6 out of 10 in the sound category. The reviews were made in the early 2000's, so it's possible this may no longer be the case with IGN.
  • Author's Saving Throw:
    • In Banana Splitz for the PS Vita, they brought back the same arcade-esque style of Challenge Mode like it was back in the GameCube daysnote , and had a reasonable amount minigamesnote . Critics and fans praised this for making the game more like the well-acclaimed GameCube titles.
    • Much of the original criticisms with the original release of Super Monkey Ball: Banana Blitz were addressed with the HD remaster. Notably changing the control scheme to a more traditional button layout and adjusting the levels to have less rails to make them more challenging, putting it more in-line with the earlier Super Monkey Ball titles on the GameCube.
  • Big-Lipped Alligator Moment: The Inside The Whale world from Super Monkey Ball 2. It does nothing to advance the story other than make room for the last 10 Advanced stages (Not like you'd care for the story anyway).
  • Breather Level:
    • The unusually merciful Bonus Stages. The set task is to collect several bananas within the time limit. However, unlike every other stage, you're not penalized if you run out of time or fall out.
    • Skeleton plays a rather extreme example here, don't you agree?note 
    • There's always at least one very easy stage in every Story Mode Grid in 2 and Deluxe, even in the hardest worlds.
    • World 7 (Bubbly Washing Machine) in 2 (and Deluxe's) Story Mode is surprisingly easy compared to 4 (Which had Launchers and Arthropod), 5 (Which has Toggle, Melting Pot, Mad Shuffle and Tower) and 6 (Which had Switch Inferno). A majority of the stages actually quite fair and fun. Even it's harder stages aren't on the same That One Level territory on some of the levels before it (unless you're playing Deluxe, in which case you have the infamous levels Exam-C, Tracks, and Invasion from the first game). This also applies to Expert Levels 21 - 29.
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    • World 8 (Clock Tower Factory) is home to some of the most hellish stages in Story Mode (Pistons, Momentum, Entangled Path, Warpnote ), however there is a very simple stage called "Trampolines". The rules are simple, stand on the blue jump pads and transfer from platform to platform. It's very similar to a stage in the first game's advanced mode. But the best part? This stage is rated a ten-banana level. Talk about anti-climactic.
  • Broken Base:
    • When concerning Banana Blitz, fans either love or hate the over-reliance on motion controls. Same goes with the jumping mechanics and the inclusion of boss battles.
    • The easier Monkey Ball games (Like 3D and Step n' Roll) have gotten some flack for being "too easy", some however enjoy and appreciate them them due to the series' usual difficulty or being good overall.
    • The announcement that Banana Blitz was getting a HD remake for all current generation consoles has been met with a lot of division. On the one hand, people are happy about the news because they're happy to see Monkey Ball return to the big screen (the last Monkey Ball game to be released on a console was Step & Roll, which released all the way back in 2010) as well as seeing the franchise return to it's original form (the last Monkey Ball game was Monkey Ball Bounce, which was a spin-off game that played completely differently from the mainline games and was NOT received well by the fanbase). On the other hand though, the people that are not so happy about the announcement are disappointed because they would have much preferred to see the much more well-received GameCube games get a HD remake or would have preferred a brand new game entirely.
  • Complacent Gaming Syndrome:
    • Speedrunners tend to always pick Baby (due to him being the smallest, allowing for the most accuracy).
    • For Banana Blitz, YanYan is the go-to choice because she has the best jump.
  • Demonic Spiders: Crazy thin platforms you need to cross to finish the level, bonus points if they curve.
  • Early Game Hell:
    • In the first game (as well as the Deluxe version), Expert Mode has "Excursion", "Exam-C", and "Tracks" all within the first 10 stages.
    • World 4 in Super Monkey Ball 2 can be this too (out of 10 Worlds in all), as it contains both Launchers and Arthropod, two infamously difficult and unintuitive stages.
    • 2's Expert has That One Level as early as LEVEL 4. In fact, some of Expert's early levels are almost as hard as their later levels. At least the mode's honest about it's difficulty.
    • Deluxe has very difficult and aggravating stages... In BEGINNER!
    • If you buy a used copy of Touch & Roll, expect only the first three worlds to be available, all thanks to the developers's wise idea to put Reversible Gear/Starfish in World 2.
  • Ear Worm:
  • Ensemble Dark Horse:
    • Baby, surprisingly enough, is a highly popular character in the series. His small size makes it easier for players to make precise movements and balance on thin platforms. He helps make levels such as Expert 7 less of a headache.
    • From Banana Blitz, we have the boss of the Lethal Lava Land, Magimacaque (or Yoko by some fans). She's popular among fans for her cute design and her unique boss fight. In fact, some will say she's the best boss of the game.
  • Fridge Horror:
    • Level 2-2 (also Advanced 2) from Super Monkey Ball 2 is called "Eaten Floor." What could possibly be massive enough to...
    • As pointed out by Cinemassacre, we got to see cute monkeys get tortured in various ways, they are trapped in plastic balls throughout roughly 95% of the game, they have to survive labyrinths with the most Malevolent Architecture imaginable floating hundreds of feet in the air, and when knocked into oblivion they can reach speeds to over 200 mph! And that's just the tip of the iceberg.
    • Then again, the stages in Deluxe and 2 are Bad Boon, so this evil level design actually makes sense.
  • Genius Bonus: In 2, the stage Bumpy's bumps are actually a braille message reading "Hi! This is Jamad. That's right. Braille alphabet. I respect you!!". In case you're wondering, Jamad is the nickname of the stage designer Junichi Yamada.
  • Germans Love David Hasselhoff: Sega thought that the series would be a big hit in Japan, because monkeys. But due to the GameCube's poor sales in Japan, it became a Cult Classic in the United States.
  • Good Bad Bugs: In the first 2 games, if you break the goal tape EXACTLY when you get a time over, when you restart the stage the game would read it as the final stage. See for yourself
  • Hilarious in Hindsight: The name of the amusement park hub in Super Monkey Ball Adventure? "Zootopia".
  • It's Easy, So It Sucks!: Step and Roll and 3D. Both are really easy compared to early games of the series.
  • Memetic Mutation:
    • PISS Explanation 
    • The "It goes" meme tends to be uttered whenever someone playing Guillotine from 2.
  • Most Annoying Sound: FALL OUT!! Trust us, you'll hear that too many times to count on some levels.
  • Play the Game, Skip the Story: In 2, the story mode cutscenes are quite narmy, and you'll most likely watch them just for a good laugh. It doesn't help that the cutscenes can also be bought with play points and can be seen anytime.
  • Polished Port: The first Super Monkey Ball game for the GameCube was a port of the arcade game Monkey Ball for the NAOMI Arcade Cabinets, with the addition of minigames and introduced Gongon as a playable character. Needless to say, it was critically acclaimed and noted as one of the best GameCube games of all time.
  • Sequelitis / First Installment Wins: Though every game after Deluxe were debatable in their own right, it is almost universally agreed that none of them carry the same positive impact as the original Gamecube-Era games.
  • Sidetracked by the Gold Saucer: You could play the games entirely as sports-simulators and minigames, only sticking your head into the main mode where absolutely necessary to unlock new games.
  • Squick: Dr. Bad-Boon looks how many years older than Meemee? And he keeps flirting with her after shrinking her and her friends down so he can cook them and eat them.
  • So Okay, It's Average: General Critical consensus on Banana Blitz HD. While the game fixed the original games controls, it suffers from lackluster mini games and an overall lack of content.
  • Surprise Difficulty: This game can be very difficult; despite having a cast of cute monkeys, the game can force you to travel across shifting plates in a slippery ball and cross on an extremely small platform to a spinning square to get to the goal platform. And you gotta do it within the timeframe or you'll lose a life.
  • Tastes Like Diabetes: It's a game about cutesy monkeys rolling around in hamster balls. Total no-brainer.
  • That One Achievement: Banana Splitz has 3 that stand out:
  • That One Boss:
    • Octopocus from Stage 5 of Banana Blitz. His boss arena is incredibly small and has no safety features whatsoever, meaning it's ridiculously easy to fall of the stage. Tiny octopus minions will constantly swarm from the edges of the arena, making it easy to get bumped off by them. Then when he actually shows up, the difficulty gets turned Up to Eleven. His tentacles span the entire stage and constantly move around, blocking your path from all directions and trying to knock you off the stage. His weak point has a strange hitbox and is very difficult to hit with all the tentacles showing up. His actual attacks cover a wide area and can knock you off the stage if you so much as touch them. And, he is prone to retreating into the ocean and then jumping on top of you, instantly knocking you off the map. There's a reason why most people consider him the hardest boss in the entire game.
  • Unexpected Character: Who expected Sonic the Hedgehog to be playable in Banana Blitz HD? Who expected him in his Classic design specifically?
  • What Do You Mean, It's for Kids?: Normally subverted, the game is honest about its age rating (title not withstanding), but it could invoke the trope for much different reasons.
  • What Do You Mean, It Wasn't Made on Drugs?: The premise of a monkey in a hamster ball is enough for it to invoke this.


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