Monster Party

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Genre: Platform

Publisher: Bandai

Total time played: 3 Hours

Short review:  A simple platformer for the NES featuring 8 levels, each with 3 unique bosses each with a cheesy catch phrase and a lot of horror references.


Interesting links related to Monster Party


When I rented Monster Party as a kid I expected a game like Castlevania as the box art showed many of the classic Universal movie monsters.  As it turns out the game is nothing like Castlevania and features very few of the monsters on the front of the box.  But, don’t let that discourage you, Monster Party is a pretty decent game with some memorable bad guys.

The game starts off like many other NES games.  A kid is recruited to help save the world.  In Monster Party the world the kid is going to save is not his own, but a far off planet full of monsters and all he has to defend himself is a baseball bat.  Each of the games 8 levels features 3 unique bosses, each with their own catch phrase.  Some of the bosses include a shrimp and onion ring, the grim reaper, a torso who plays electric guitar, a mummy, a sphinx head, a cat in a box, dancing zombies, and a dead tarantula covered in flies.  There are plenty of nods to horror movies throughout the game including an enemy in stage 7 who wears a mask, when you hit him the mask comes off to reveal an elephant head and a boss in stage 1 who looks like Audrey II from Little Shop of Horrors.  Each stage also begins with what I believe is the bloodiest screen from any game on the NES.

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Most of the bosses are easily defeated by just standing next to them and bashing the B button.  If you don’t have enough life most of the levels feature a spot that you can easily kill the same enemy over and over until you have enough health to continue.  The game features only one powerup, a giant pill that turns the main character Mark into a dragon who can fly and shoot fire balls.  The dragon makes the game much much easier.

Unlimited continues make this game very beatable but you only get one life to defeat each stage.  None of the stages were terribly difficult so the most I had to replay a stage was maybe 4-5 times.  Stage 6 was the most frustrating, not because it was hard but because it was a maze.  There were dozens of doors throughout the stage and only one correct combination to get to the exit, it took a while but I managed to do it without using the internet.

The music in the game is a mixed bag.  Many of the songs are very reminiscent of a Japanese RPG while others sound like horror themed music or world music including a song that sounds like a very cliche Egyptian song.  Monster Party is not a true NES classic but if you are a fan of horror movies it is a game that you should play at least once.

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