If you had a Wii in your gaming collection back in 2006, chances are you heard about a little game from SEGA called Super Monkey Ball: Banana Blitz. It was a colorful motion controlled game with around 100 stages to rock & roll through, collecting bananas and making new records in the process. Unfortunately, not everyone had the chance to jump into the monkey business back then when the game was initially released. But with the release of Super Monkey Ball: Banana Blitz HD for multiple platforms, everyone who missed it the first time can experience the fun of rolling around its clever and challenging stages. Is it worth going back to it? For fans of lighthearted and simple to control games, it definitely is.
The biggest change you’ll find in Super Monkey Ball: Banana Blitz HD are the revamped controls. You don’t have to deal with janky motion controls if you don’t want to this time, and instead use the analogue sticks to control their rolling ape. This might get rid of a huge portion of the original game’s selling point on the Wii, but it also makes playing through the entire game more streamlined for those who never liked motion controls.
Even with the increasing challenge throughout the 100 stages of puzzle action, moving around and collecting bananas is much more fun with better controls. Rolling around can be fast and make you tactfully move your way through each area towards the goal. Though it can get difficult in some areas, the game never becomes frustrating or seem impossible to get through.
Other changes that make Super Monkey Ball: Banana Blitz better are the inclusion of online leaderboards, new multiplayer mini-games, and revamped graphics. All of this makes Super Monkey Ball: Banana Blitz HD feel fresh and offer a lot to do. Going through the single player main game is exactly as it was beforehand on the Wii, but with all the new changes to make it better.
Time-Attack is exactly what you expect, with your times being recorded as you finish each stage. The 10 mini-games are fun for local multiplayer, with multiple challenges to compete in locally. These same games can also be played in the game’s Decathlon, a mode where you can set high scor3es and records against other people online. The mini-games are the same, but the records you set get added to the online leaderboards.
Speaking of which, the online ranking in Super Monkey Ball: Banana Blitz HD follows your Time-Attack and Decathlon records. It covers all difficulties and all modes, but offers little else besides listing who were the best players on each stage.
If you want extra content however, there are a few bonuses you can unlock after finishing the main game, including a very special SEGA mascot who joins the fun. Beyond that there isn’t much else to go through as far as bonuses, which is disappointing since it would’ve been great to see any behind-the-scenes or other extras like concept art and teasers.
Any fan of SEGA or games that are easy to play through will enjoy Super Monkey Ball: Banana Blitz HD. No matter which platform you get it for, the game is the best version it has been since the original release. Its colorful, lighthearted, and a joy to play either alone or with your friends. While it could’ve used a bit more content to enjoy after completing the main game and other modes, Super Monkey Ball: Banana Blitz HD can still be a great game to sit down with for a good while.
This review is based on a digital review code of Super Monkey Ball: Banana Blitz HD for the Nintendo Switch, provided by SEGA.