Last Christmas, the kid received an excellent board game: The Game of Life: Super Mario Edition. This masterpiece combines the best qualities of Game of Life and Mario Party into a delightful package. The Game of Life always seems a bit needlessly complicated with a lot of minutiae. Any game where you are keeping track of paper currency can become tedious. The Mario Edition pares Life down to its essentials: a big spinner and game piece that collects little plastic pegs. The board is now nonlinear and the paper money has been replaced Mario coins.
If you’ve played the Mario Party video games, some elements are immediately familiar. The main goal is to collect stars, you can pick up companions and usable items, and you play minigames. Obviously the minigames are the best part of the Mario Party series, but how does this translate to an actual board game? This was a stroke of genius: the minigame cards will instruct you to play “rock, paper, scissors,” “thumb war,” or a game utilizing the spinner.
In the end, you have something that I think is far more fun than the mainline versions of Game of Life. And I think anybody who’s enjoyed the Mario Party series of games will love how the on-screen board game influenced the real-life board game.
It’s way better than a Monopoly board rebranded to some random TV show.