Party on, Mario

Multiplayer madness returns for seventh go; two new characters, 86 new minigames, and six new game boards highlight game.

When he's not playing baseball, making guest appearances in SSX on Tour or in NBA Street V3, hitting the links, saving damsels in distress, or racing around tracks in karts, Nintendo's Mario likes to do what all gaming superstars do: party on until the break a' dawn. The plucky plumber and his friends are back again in Mario Party 7, the latest addition to the festive franchise.

The latest edition of Mario Party doubles the fun by expanding the maximum number of players to eight. There are 86 new minigames in all that challenge gamers with timely button presses, precision jumps, and a bit of luck. Eleven of the games incorporate the new GameCube Mic, a microphone peripheral for the console. Two new characters, Birdo and Dry Bones, join the fun for the first time, and six new environments provide the board-game-like levels.

The game is available in two different ways: a la carte for $49.99 or in a special limited-time-only bundle, with a GameCube console and two controllers, for $99.99. The game is rated E for Everyone.

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