Super Monkey Ball 3D Review

Super Monkey Ball 3D

Super Monkey Ball makes its 3DS debut.

The Super Monkey Ball series has been slowly but steadily releasing new iterations each and every year. The games have crossed various platforms over the years and with the recent launch of the Nintendo 3DS, Sega has added another platform to its repertoire.

Super Monkey Ball Screenshot

The main mode of Super Monkey Ball 3D is the classic mode that fans are familiar with. The player is in control of a moving platform and must maneuver the monkey ball around the area. Each level has various bananas to collect and some feature hidden secret items. The levels are timed so there is definitely a level of skill involved. With 7 worlds to play and multiple levels in each, there is a lot of rolling to be had. The 3D effects on this game mode are very well done. The world sees depth and you can have more precise movements with the added angle.

The game has two control schemes, one uses the circle pad and the other uses the 3DS's tilt control. While using the circle pad the 3D is perfect. The tilt control however doesn't allow for your eyes to focus and makes playing this way with the 3D on almost impossible. The tilt control is the best way to play but when it takes away from the great 3D, it ruins the fun.

Super Monkey Ball Screenshot

The second game mode, called Monkey Race, doesn't fair as well as the classic game mode. At it's core, Monkey Race is little more than a very boiled down Mario Kart. The gameplay is rampant and aggravating. The controls are stiff and not very responsive. Racers will find themselves getting hit with stray items and getting knocked down to the bottom of the races. The game play is bland and feels completely tacked on. There is little positive about this game mode.

Super Monkey Ball Screenshot

The last game mode, Monkey Fight, fairs fairly better then the race mode. A la Super Smash Brothers, you pick a monkey and fight either 3 CPU's, or multiplayer over the local connection. The monkeys each have a strong and weak attack, can jump, grab, and each have their own special attack. At random times a barrel will appear and whoever breaks it open, is granted with their special attack. The main difference from Smash Bros. is that each monkey is granted with a number of bananas. The monkey who collects the most bananas by beating each other up, wins. There are a ton of different monkey fighters to collect and different game modes to fight in. It's not nearly as in depth as Smash Bros., but it doesn't completely ruin the fun either.

Overall, Super Monkey Ball 3D is a solid, 3DS launch title. The classic monkey ball mode doesn't get old and the 3D is sometimes breathtaking. Tons of levels to awe at and tons of items to collect, keep the gamer coming back for more. The other two game modes are clearly weaker then the classic, but the monkey fight is definitely worth a round or two.

Super Monkey Ball 3D
The classic monkey ball mode is fun but can get repetitive at times. The monkey race mode is passable, and the fight mode can be fun to a point.
Some of the tunes played throughout the various game modes are a little catchy but most of the music is forgettable.
Clean levels, smooth visuals, and great 3D. Nothing jaw dropping but you can tell it is an upgrade compared to the average DS game.
The controls in the classic mode and in the monkey fight mode are more often then not, perfect. However the dreadful controls in the monkey race mode makes for an aggravating experience.
There is definitely some fun to be had in this Monkey Ball game, and tons of unlockables will keep you playing for a good amount of time. Avoiding the race mode is recommended however.
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