I'm going to make this easy on you all.... Super Monkey Ball is so cool it is not funny!
The first party game to come out for the PAL release of GameCube, Super Monkey Ball is a party and puzzle gamer's delight that supports up to 4 players simultaneously in almost all modes and is an absolute treat to experience.
If anything you will find the downside to this title is that it is so addictive that you will have trouble putting the controller down. So prepare for some very very late nights, especially if there are a group of you playing.
Essentially you are the game title, a monkey trapped within a transparent ball. And let's face it, everyone loves monkeys. Just ask our guest reviewer:
"I love them!"
And now with that humour out of the way, the idea of the game in Normal mode is to make your way through the maze on each level, collecting bananas and trying to not tilt over the moving platform. Collect 100 bananas and gain a new life, and trust me, you will need as many lives as possible for all the spins and twists this game is going to put your monkey through.
The sheer amount of levels in this game alone is enough to justify forking out the money for this title. You are going to be kept busy for a very long time.
There are over 90 levels to complete in the standard game options with even more levels unlockable later. As we reported earlier in the year when we reviewed the Japanese version of this title, there were over 250 levels available, however the average gamer will not unlock this many as the degree of difficulty is very high.
The motion of the monkey and the board is very well programmed, with a strong sense of fully controlling the action on the board being evident. Physics of the game are sound and your immediate environment corresponds nicely with your manoeuvring.
The graphics of Super Monkey Ball are nicely realised in 3D and real time reflections are generated without sacrificing on framerate which never seems to take a hit regardless of how much is occurring on screen. There are no true next-gen graphics to speak of, but when considering what you are playing, it's a great looking game.