Mario Party[a] is a party video game series featuring characters from the Mario franchise in which up to four local players or computer-controlled characters (called “CPUs”) compete in a board game interspersed with minigames. The games are developed by NDcube and published by Nintendo, previously being developed by Hudson Soft. The series is known for its party game elements, including the often unpredictable multiplayer modes that allow play with up to four, and sometimes eight, human players or CPUs.
After the development of Mario Party 8, several of Hudson Soft’s key designers left to work for Nintendo subsidiary NDcube, developers of Wii Party. Starting in 2012 with Mario Party 9, NDcube has taken over development of the series from Hudson Soft. The latest instalment in the series, Super Mario Party, was released on October 5, 2018 for the Nintendo Switch.
Super Mario Party was announced during Nintendo’s Electronic Entertainment Expo 2018 Nintendo Direct presentation and released on October 5, 2018. The game focuses more on traditional Mario Party gameplay and doesn’t feature the car mechanic used in Mario Party 9 and Mario Party 10. It instead allows players to move freely on the board.
The series holds the record for the longest-running minigame series. As of December 2014, Nintendo reported cumulative worldwide sales of 39.6 million game copies in the Mario Party franchise