lufferov's Super Monkey Ball 3D (Nintendo 3DS) review

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Super Average Monkey Ball 3D

I picked up this game with my 3DS hoping to relive the glory days of the Gamecube. I remember the hours of frustration spent trying and failing to complete the fiendishly difficult levels. I couldn't tell you the number of time I had to walk across the room to pick up the controller that I'd just thrown in frustration. Luckily I never actually broke the old Wavebird, pretty sturdy bits of kit as it turns out!
But anyway, this game had to be on by must have list. It was the first game I ever experienced motion control with, so it made sense for it to be my first 3D game too.
First impressions are great, the 3D is impressive and the controls are superb. The only drawback is that to enjoy the 3D images, you have to use the thumbstick, the motion control and 3D just don't work since you can't keep your eyes in the right place. However, this isn't a problem for me since I enjoy the accuracy of the stick.
First impressions don't last long though and soon I could see that Monkey Ball wasn't putting up much of a fight against me. Most of the levels have barriers to stop you falling off. Even in the last levels the barriers are still there to keep you safe. There are a lot of times when you don't have them, but it feels like they are holding your hand the whole time.
I could liken it to the bowling alley where you put the gates up to prevent your ball going down the gutter. You might need them as a child, but you soon grow out of them. The trouble in Super Monkey Ball 3D is they never let you out of the diapers.
I completed the whole game in roughly 2 hours over the period of several shorter sessions. In that time, I was able to complete 90% of the levels with all the Bananas collected on my first attempt! Now I'm by no means a skilled gamer, but this provided me with absolutely no challenge.
Once the credits rolled I honestly expected the proper game to start, but no. There was one more world unlocked which is supposedly the hardest. Even then I still had very little trouble polishing them off in no time.
In terms of mini-games you only get two, Monkey Race and Monkey Fight. But they aren't that good, Monkey Race is probably the better of the two with Mario Kart style power ups. Monkey Fight is a Super Smash Bros. clone, but a fairly poor one.
The fact that this game is so easy is a massive disappointment, there is no challenge here! I've played tougher and longer games on my iPhone costing just a few pence. The fact they are charging full price for this is an insult. I expect a lot more value for money! I would recommend a rental or perhaps a purchase when it's at a budget price, but steer clear of a full price!

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