The Mario Party series, which first started in 1998 with Mario Party for the Nintendo 64, is a multiplayer Mario gaming series. The hosts are Toadsworth, MC Ballyhoo & Big Top, Star Spirits, Twila & Brighton, Yellow Toad, Blue Toad, Toad, Koopa, Goomba, Boo, Shy Guy, Koopa Kid, Millieum Star, and Toadette.
In the games, players would run across digital game boards as classic Mario characters, collecting Coins, items, and eventually Stars. The game is divided into turns, usually in ranks of ten to fifty. At the end of each turn, a minigame is played, and the winner receives a small Coin bonus. Whoever has the most Stars and/or Coins at the end wins.
Every game in the main series has a standard Party Mode in which up to four players play through a board, trying to collect as many Stars as possible. In every turn, each player rolls a Dice Block and progresses on the board, which usually has branching paths. Coins are primarily earned by performing well in a minigame played at the end of each turn. On most boards, players earn Stars by reaching a star space and purchasing a Star for a certain amount of Coins. The Star space appears randomly on one of several pre-determined locations and moves every time a Star is purchased, usually occupying a blue space.
Every Mario Party contains at least 50 to almost 115 minigames with a few different types. Four-player games are a free-for-all in which players compete individually. In 2-on-2 and 1-on-3 minigames, players compete as two groups, cooperating to win, even though they are still competing individually in the main game. Some minigames in Mario Party 1 are 4-player co-op, even though it doesn't say it. In most situations, winners earn ten Coins each.
Battle minigames first appeared in Mario Party 2. These games are like the 4-player games but are often more elaborate. Instead of winners earning ten Coins each, each player contributes a randomly selected number of Coins (or all coins if the player falls short of the pot amount). The winner of the minigame receives 70% of the pot, the second-place winner receives the other 30%, and a random player occasionally gets a coin leftover from rounding.
Duel minigames also debuted in Mario Party 2, and were omitted in Mario Party 4 (though the Story minigames were all duels), but returned in Mario Party 5. Duel games pit two players against each other. In Party Mode, one player initiates the duel, wagering Coins or even a star against another player. The winner of the duel receives all coins or stars wagered. Starting with Mario Party 7, the player no longer chooses the wager in a duel, rather, the duel takes place and the prize to the winner, if any, is randomly determined.
In addition to Party mode, every Mario Party has a minigame mode in which minigames are played with the board game. Minigame modes vary from game to game, but later games have many different variations. In one such example from Mario Party 7, each player tries to fill a board with as many spaces as possible in his or her color by winning minigames.
- Coins. If players land here, they are given three
- Landing on this space has players lose three Coins.
- If players reach the Star Space, they may purchase a Star for twenty Coins. Though, other conditions may apply for other boards.
- Bowser minigame, giving everyone all the same amount of coins. Someone may even lose a Star or Coins and be given to others as a luckier thing. If players land here, something unlucky is likely to happen. Options include playing a
Donkey Kong Space
- Donkey Kong-based minigame. If players land here, they may play a
- When players land here, something like switching directions with others or doubling spaces may happen to them.
- When players land on this space, an event triggers causing either lucky or unlucky things to reign upon players.
When players pass Big Boo, he steals Coins for free from someone or steals a Star for the cost of fifty Coins.
Blue Coin Space
- When the player lands on one, a blue dice block appears. When smashed, that given number is the certain amount of Coins the player is going to get.
- Mario Party (Nintendo 64, 1999)
- Mario Party 2 (Nintendo 64, 2000)
- Mario Party 3 (Nintendo 64, 2001)
- Mario Party 4 (Nintendo GameCube, 2002)
- Mario Party-e (Game Boy Advance e-Reader, 2003)
- Mario Party 5 (Nintendo GameCube, 2003)
- Mario Party 6 (Nintendo GameCube, 2004)
- Mario Party Advance (Game Boy Advance, 2005)
- Mario Party 7 (Nintendo GameCube, 2005)
- Mario Party 8 (Wii, 2007)
- Mario Party DS (Nintendo DS, 2007)
- Mario Party 9 (Wii, 2012)
- Mario Party: Island Tour (Nintendo 3DS, 2013)
- Mario Party 10 (Wii U, 2015)
- Mario Party: Star Rush (Nintendo 3DS, 2016)
- Mario Party: The Top 100 (Nintendo 3DS, 2017)
- Super Mario Party (Nintendo Switch, 2018)
- Mario Party Superstars (Nintendo Switch, 2021)
|Mario Party (1998, N64) | Mario Party 2 (1999, N64) | Mario Party 3 (2000, N64) | Mario Party 4 (2002, GameCube) | Mario Party 5 (2003, GameCube) | Mario Party 6 (2004, GameCube) | Mario Party 7 (2005, GameCube) | Mario Party 8 (2007, Wii) | Mario Party 9 (2012, Wii) | Mario Party 10 (2015, Wii U) | Super Mario Party (2018, Switch) | Mario Party Superstars (2021, Switch)|
|Mario Party-e (2003, GBA) | Mario Party Advance (2005, GBA) | Mario Party DS (2007, DS) | Mario Party: Island Tour (2013, 3DS) | Mario Party: Star Rush (2016, 3DS) | Mario Party: The Top 100 (2017, 3DS)|