February 10, 2005

I’ve got Monkeys.

It is not the Year of the Monkey anymore, but I coincidentally made a monkey related purchase just before the Year of the Rooster began.

I bought Super Monkey Ball and Super Monkey Ball 2 for the GameCube. They cost around $20 each. I had never played these games before, but I’d heard and read about how much fun they were since they came out. So I figured, at that price, why not? Besides, it’s got monkeys. Monkeys make everything better.

So far I’ve just been playing the first Monkey Ball, and will tackle the second when I’m done. It is as quirky and silly and fun as you’d expect from a game with the words “Super“, “Monkey“, and “Ball” in its title. Despite the game’s cute exterior, it takes a lot of skill to roll that monkey around without falling off the ledge. There have been a few frustrating spots, but like any good game should, it keeps me coming back for more.

The real treat of this game, however, are the Mini Game and Party Game options, specifically “Monkey Target“. The concept itself is so crazy that it could only originate from Japan. You take a monkey in a plastic ball, roll it down a huge ramp, launch it over the open sea, have the ball split into hemispherical wings, carefully maneuver it towards the targets, close it up back into a ball, and hope that the monkey lands on big points instead of in the water. It’s one of the most insane, difficult, hilarious, and addicting things I’ve ever played. It takes a while to get the hang of it, but once you do, you’ll keep on trying to beat your score. I think that, from now on, various conflicts and arguments should be solved with Monkey Target. It just makes perfect sense to me!

There was another game I saw available at that same budget price: Billy Hatcher. It’s about a little boy in a chicken costume who rolls an egg around. Yeah. How appropriate for the Year of the Rooster. Think I’ll have to pick that game up too. Between Monkey Ball, Pikmin, and Katamari Damashi, I’ll be developing a crazy collection of weird video games. Could be a future article in that, so if you know of any weird, silly, obscure video games that are worth looking into, let me know and I’ll keep it in mind.

Now I’m off to play with my Monkey Balls.



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