Conga Master Party Turns You Into a Dance Predator

first_img For too long the definition of “Game of the Year” has been unfairly narrow. How boring is it to see every website shower the same stale AAA games with praise at the end of each holiday season? So at Geek.com we’re doing what we can to put a stop to this in Game of the Year, a new column celebrating worthy alternative picks for the year’s greatest game regardless of genre, platform, year of release, or even quality. Here, any game can be Game of the Year!Conga Master Party is a game about dancing, but it’s not really a rhythm game. Music plays, but instead of focusing on the beat, your thoughts should be focused on ensnaring your next semi-willing victim. I’ve been playing this game on the Nintendo Switch, but when a game is weird like this that’s when it gets the Game of the Year treatment.Conga Master Party’s main gameplay, and really its only gameplay, revolves around its conga mechanic. The player enters the dance floor, invariably says “What could possibly go wrong?”, and begins moving around the dance floor. Dance around a person or persons long enough and they will join your conga line like some kind of boogie-down Big Boss. But you have to be careful, because bumping into a potential new recruit causes their conga interest to plummet, and since you must maintain a draining momentum meter, you can’t afford to waste time.You also never stop moving. You can’t stop the conga line, only steer it. Instead of controlling the character directly, players use the shoulder buttons to point them left and right as well as dash. Menus also use this control scheme to help you stay accustomed to it. This places a premium on making circular movements, big loops that lasso as many folks as possible, especially as your conga line gets longer. You have to be aware of your own tail like you’re playing Snake or something.To keep Conga Master Party from feeling like the nifty and funny extended WarioWare microgame that it is, the game has a fair amount of different modes taking the very arcade mechanic in different directions. But while the variety is appreciated, you can actively feel the stretching.The single player campaign has you dancing across different night clubs, each with their own appropriately funky Samba De Amigo backing tracks. To progress you have to join up with a certain amount of dancers with different personalities, from bookish to cool to passionate, before time runs out. And it’s surprisingly tough. While there are power-ups for more efficient conga combos, there are also hazards like slippery floors or pigs that kill your momentum if you accidentally let them dance with you. Alien invasions in-between rounds even keep you from bringing most of your allies into the next level.Beyond the campaign there’s an endless mode as well as a handful of new multiplayer minigames. Each multiplayer game is a parody of another game, from “Mortal Konga” to “Grand Theft Conga,” and adds its own unique wrinkle to the festivities. Grab a dancer and keep them in your zone as long as possible. Cut through your rival’s growing conga line. Recruit dancers as health and ammo for a final confrontation. It’s impressive just how many different directions the developers took the same basic idea.But in the end, Conga Master Party always is the same basic idea. There are only so many different ways I could do the same dance patterns around the same people before I started to get bored.The presentation tries its hardest to stave this off. The pixel art representing fanciful ordinariness reminded me of other Game of the Year Winner Luke Sidewalker. Meanwhile, the lengthy list of playable characters are full of personality and each have their own stats for another attempt at depth. You can even unlock costumes for them using amiibo, although the game missed the obvious opportunity for a Donkey Konga reference.However, like fellow strange game about growing yourself through others Katamari Damacy, Conga Master Party’s charms are better appreciated in short bursts before they get tired. Maybe that’s why real conga lines can’t last forever.Check back next week to read about the next Game of the Year! Stay on target Review: ‘Fantasy Strike’ Is A Fighting Game That Understands…Game of the Year: Jordan Minor’s Best Video Games of 2018 center_img Let us know what you like about Geek by taking our survey.last_img

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