What do humans, pigs, cats, and aliens all have in common? According to Conga Master Party, they like to conga! This game was released earlier in the year on the Nintendo Switch by Rising Star Games, which is the same publisher that brought us Lumo.
Conga Master Party is one of those indie titles that loves to be coated in colorful pixel art. I can’t blame ’em, though, because they always make an effective use of their sprite work. Everything in this game is a visual treat, from the busy dance floors to the many individually animated characters there are to round up. From UFOs to all the places your character visits to party, it’s my kind of nonsense!
The music in Conga Master Party is cheesy, but it’s delightfully cheesy. It’s the kind of stuff that makes you want to get up and dance with it. Even if the melodies may be repetitive, they are catchy to the point where you may not mind it looping at all. The sound design mixes 8-Bit sounding bytes with more “realistic” things like audience cheers and cartoon-y smacks. It’s not a bad mixing, but it does feel like the game is unsure whether or not to complement the fact the graphics are sprites and tiles.
In a way, it feels like an interesting disco variation on Snake. The primary objective is to nudge people into forming a conga line with you. The more people you gather up, the longer the line gets. However, you also have to keep your momentum in check; the momentum is constantly decreasing, and getting people to join helps alleviate it a bit. Bigger impacts could be made by having multiple people join in quick succession, resulting in combos. Oh, and there are banana peels, pigs, and bullies to avoid bumping into. You cannot bump into the people you’re trying to rope in, either, or else it will take longer to convince them.
While these elements make for clever fundamentals in Conga Master Party‘s design, it isn’t without some rough corners. I was never particularly challenged by the after-level bonus areas. Some more variety in obstacles in those would be nice. More importantly, I wish there were camera settings or a map that I could view to know where everyone is. Easily the most bothersome part of the game is having to find people to round up in the first place, therefore I end up wasting momentum wandering around before the hazards even become a threat. This can be forgiven in multiplayer modes since, well, the game gets to be treated as a party game. In single-player, though, I should be able to see the whole level to see where everything is and plan from there.
All things considered, Conga Master Party is a decent game for the Switch. I recommend this one if you’re looking for something different and lighthearted. It has some things that could be improved on, but the unique Snake-style gameplay and positively goofy themes make the game worth checking out. It’s especially worth considering if you have friends to play along for the multiplayer.