Mario Party 6

Back when Donkey Konga first arrived in the NGC office, we were surrounded by journalists from magazines dedicated to 'rival' game consoles, eager to prod and pat our collection of bongos. You'd think they'd never seen someone clasping a set of plastic drums between their knees before. When we get hold of Mario Party 6, we're confident we can pull an even bigger crowd, thanks to the 'Nintendo Gamecube Mic' that we can bark orders into.

Yes, there's the familiar Party mode, where you go head-to-head against the Gamecube or real friends across a series of game boards (there are six this time round), competing in minigames in a race for coins and stars. But there's now a Mic mode, where you get to take part in a game show, answering questions into the microphone. You'll also be able to use the mic during the minigames (we're guessing it'll be a selection, rather than the full 75+). Imagine the player with the mic launching Bullet Bill or a series of missiles and the other three trying to avoid being blown into tiny cartoon pieces. That kind of thing.

Other than that, it's pretty much business as usual - apart from a new day and night system. It's all tied in with the single-player Story mode, where Brighton (the sun) and Twila (the moon) fall out or something, and it's up to Mario and co to restore the balance. By playing minigames. Mmm. These, and the boards, change depending on the time of day, while new characters also make an appearance. Wonder who..?

Mario Party 6 will be realeased in 2005 on Gamecube