Sunday, February 05, 2006

Super Monkey Ball Deluxe

I bought this just after Christmas for £10, and haven't got around to playing it yet. This is quite amazing given the amount of fun I had with the first two games on the Gamcube. I suspect it's party due to the knowledge that most of the levels are the same. But still.

I couldn't find the option to play a "traditional" game - where you're presented with levels one after the other - so instead went for story mode, where each level consists of around 20 trays and you must pass ten of them to continue. This is rather different to the previous games, where it's necessary to complete every tray of each level. And it makes it rather a lot easier too.

In Super Monkey Ball 2, you could be stuck on a level for ages because you couldn't get past a single tray. Anthropod, for example. But now you can decide not to play Anthropod, but a different level 4 tray instead.

I still played Launchers, however. I like that level, it amuses m. I managed it on my fourth go.

The controls are much less responsive and defined than on the Gamecube games. It really is a struggle to keep the monkeys on the level even when there's a relatively wide path. For example, what was Beginner level 10 in the original game (and is now called something like "Exam Level A") held me up for a couple of falls, whereas I can do it first time, every time on the Gamecube.

But it's still a great game. I'm trying to find the new levels, and some of them are really good - getting rid of the gimmicky switches of the second game, and instead relying on simple design. For example, there's a really cool swirly one where you have to spin into the middle and then out again. I can't describe it very well. Anyway, go too fast at the beginning and you can jump over the ridge into the swirl near the exit. But if you do that, it's easy then to jump back into the beginning groove again.

I look forward to multiplayer.

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