MarioPartyI’ve never been a huge fan of video games—not because I didn’t find them fun, but I just don’t have the hand-eye coordination to be any good at them. When my brother and I were growing up, we had an N64 in the house, and I got pretty good at games such as Mario Kart 64 and Goldeneye 007, so I didn’t mind playing.

One game I really love to play is Mario Party. It’s a mix of a board game and mini games that challenge either luck or skill, and is a multiplayer game that’s fun for friend groups or families. Some of the games take some skill, but it’s never too much that a gamer on, say, my level couldn’t handle the challenge. To this day, when my friends from high school and I get together, we still sit around and play, even though the game has changed quite a bit since the original Nintendo 64 version.

So I was very excited to jump at the chance to play the new Mario Party Island Tour, the 12th game in the Mario Party series, for the Nintendo 3DS. When I had originally tested it, it was on a 3DS, which was great, but I spent a little more time with it on the 2DS and the game isn’t any less fun without the 3-D capabilities.

The game features 10 iconic characters from the Super Mario Bros. universe to choose from and new styles of play that take advantage of the capabilities of the Nintendo 3DS system, such as voice imitation, tilt controls, and option augmented reality. In Party mode, players can play solo or in multiplayer on seven unique game boards. The cool thing about the game boards is that each has different rules, characteristics, and goals. A menu shows you how much of the game board relies on skill, luck, and mini game play time. When playing in Solo mode, the other players can be customized to different skill levels.

Mario Party Island Tour also has download play, meaning that you can play with friends or family members that own a 3DS or 2DS, even if only one of you has the game. The game also features different modes of play, including Time Attack and Hot-Air Hijinks.  Players can also earn Mario Party Points to unlock in-game collectibles, such as character illustrations, voices, or music from the game.

About the author

Ali Mierzejewski

Ali Mierzejewski

Ali Mierzejewski is the editor-in-chief at The Toy Insider and The Pop Insider. With more than a decade of industry experience, Ali is a trusted source for parents, gift-givers, manufacturers, retailers, and more on the latest trends and hottest products. Whether you’re shopping for the best toys for kids — or looking for the latest in geek culture and entertainment for yourself — Ali’s expertise has you covered. When she’s not building LEGO sets or unwinding with a puzzle, Ali is obsessing over the latest season of The Bachelor, scrolling through Gritty’s Twitter, or rewatching The West Wing (for the 100th time). She is also a self-proclaimed expert on the history and lore of the entire Bachelor franchise. Ali has been featured on TODAY, The Wendy Williams Show, Yahoo Finance, Fox & Friends, HLN, The Weather Channel, ABC World News Now, and more. You can follow her on Instagram @hashtagtrendy.