A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this game.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that Super Monkey Ball Step & Roll is a game of high-speed navigation and one that few young children will excel at from the get-go. While the controls are very intuitive and easy to learn, there's a great amount of steadiness and balance needed to do well. These skills can be picked up through repeated play if a child has the patience for it. But easily frustrated kids who don't like games they can't win from the first attempt are likely to give up on this one too quickly. In addition to the platform mazes games, there are also 21 multiplayer mini-games.
- Parents say
- Kids say
What's it about?
In SUPER MONKEY BALL STEP & ROLL, players use either the Wii remote or the Wii balance board to guide a monkey in a big, clear plastic ball along treacherous twisting platform mazes. Along the way, you can collect bananas to gain extra lives (you lose a life when you either fall off the course or can't finish within the one-minute time limit). Outside of this main game, there are also 21 multiplayer mini-games, including pinball, snowboarding, jump rope, luge, bumper cars, skydiving, and more.
Is it any good?
The main thing anyone is likely to complain about with Super Monkey Ball Step & Roll is the difficulty. There is a great deal of skill required to make it through the entire game. But the twist and tilt action is one that almost anyone can improve through practice, and the thrill of finally making it through a level that has been repeatedly thwarting you is so much powerful than simply acing a game from the get-go. The game is incredibly fun and certainly worth sticking with, even if you can't master it all easily. The mini-games are a mixed bag -- some offering great 4-player action, others feeling like they were tacked on. But they're all just icing anyway (and there are 21 of them, which is just as many as you get in some games that are sold as mini-game collections), so it's hard to be too upset about the few duds in the bunch.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about using the balance board vs. the Wii remote. Which method is easier? Which is more fun? Is it more challenging to keep a steady hand or to put your whole body into action in order to steer the ball?
Although steering with the balance board doesn't require you to movearound all that much, it can still make you tired: Why do you thinkthat is? How is keeping one's balance good exercise? What muscles doesit work out?
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