the concept may be novel, the gameplay of Super Monkey
Ball Deluxe is much more than a novelty. It combines
action and puzzles and requires skillful manipulation
as you traverse all kinds of challenging terrain inside
a transparent sphere. You're not actually playing
inside a sphere, a monkey is. It all kind of makes
sense, read on.
don't even actually control the transparent sphere
directly, which we'll just call a ball from now on.
Instead it's like playing a pinball game and moving
the actual box around to influence the direction of
the ball. Tilting it in various directions will cause
it to go up ramps, into targets and down lanes. The
Super Monkey Ball doesn't have any extraordinary powers
but the monkeys do. The ball itself doesn't jump,
fly, bounce or hover of its own volition although
it's prone to a multitude of incidental movements
depending on how it's handled.
level is a race to finish line. Between the monkey
in the ball and the checkered flag is an obstacle
course filled with ramps, twisting paths, moving objects,
sharp turns, dangerous precipices and other monkeys
in balls. There are different paths that one can take
as well as switches that you can activate to stop
or slow down some of the more challenging obstacles,
but this can rob you of precious time. It's quite
possible to get through each level if you go slow
enough. This will certainly help beginners to map
out a strategy as they learn the outlay of the level
while they develop the necessary skills to compete.
Bad-Boon has stolen all of the monkeys' bananas. To
foil him, four monkeys enter his mazes to collect
the bananas that he's hidden. The winner is the monkey
with the most bananas. That's it for the story.
Monkey Ball first made its appearance on the Cube
in 2001. This version contains all of the levels from
the original as well as the sequel for a total of
154. But wait there's more. Super Monkey Ball Deluxe
contains 46 new maps. That's a lot of gameplay. I
didn't get through a quarter of this game before deadline.
It gets more involved in each subsequent stage. The
levels aren't very long. Some don't even last a minute.
You get fifteen chances to complete each level. What
you want to ultimately do is avoid falling - and that's
not an easy thing to do.
modes abound. You can race against three other players
in any previously unlocked level in the Challenge
mode. Parents take note that the gameplay is non-aggressive.
Players are forbidden from knocking each other out
of play. It may be competitive but it won't instill
bad sportsmanship in impressionable gamers.
various generic sports games as an influence, there
are 12 mini games that are perfect for a party setting.
You'll play Monkey Ball versions of baseball, soccer,
bowling, billiards, tennis and golf to name a few.
Not all of these games are great. Some suffer from
sluggish controls. There is no online mode but what's
here more than makes up for it. One the downside,
there is some traceable slowdown and the load times
can last longer than some of the levels. Also, the
audio isn't mixed properly with the monkeys' dialog
which is often much louder than the background sound.
isn't the best looking version of Super Monkey Ball.
It's not even as good as the original Cube version
and although I haven't seen the Xbox version yet,
it just has to be better than this. It's too angular.
It's rough and jaggy in places but the lower-quality
looks don't interfere with the gameplay.
pure arcade fun you can't go wrong with a rental of
Super Monkey Ball Deluxe. You can be up and playing
the game in seconds but how long until you continue
playing it is up to you. Beware, it's highly addicting.