In the next installment of: I Play Demos so You Don't Have to, I present Viva Pinata Party Animals. I downloaded this demo not because I was particularly interested in it, but because of my deep deep love for you the reader. This seems to be Microsoft's attempt at competing with the likes of Mario Party. I wasn't expecting much, but I was pleasantly surprised. As much as Mario Party 8 sucked, Viva Pinata Party Animals doesn't. The mini games (at least the ones in the demo) are varied and surprisingly fun. The demo lets you play four players, but I just played against the computer. Mini games consist of things like squashing Raisin Ants, an apple eating contest, and a burping contest. Every so often a Mario Kart type race takes place which while not on par with Mario Kart, is fun and engaging. I can see kids liking these sorts of things. The presentation is irreverent and funny. I recommend picking up the demo and trying it for yourself. If you have young kids in the family, this is a nice addition to the Xbox 360 library and fills a large hole in the game lineup.
Here is a rundown of the game's features:
Compete in a variety of zany battles and races in the social party game Viva Piñata®: Party Animals. Control the fame, fortune, and destiny of all your favorite characters from Viva Piñata: Fergy Fudgehog, Paulie Pretztail, Franklin Fizzlybear, and Hudson Horstachio. It's party time!
- Huge variety of exciting mini-games: Viva Piñata: Party Animals includes more than 40 mini-games and a dozen foot races for players to compete against one another. Collect candy and special bonuses in all sorts of exotic and hazard-filled locations.
- Gameplay for everyone: Appealing to young kids or those just young-at-heart, this unique social party game rewards and challenges all players regardless of their skill level. Friends and family members of all ages can party together in one place or from around the world via Xbox LIVE®.
- Engaging and inviting graphics: The game is especially designed for interaction among friends and family. Pushing the advanced capabilities of the Xbox 360™, the game offers a vibrant and engaging gaming experience. It's the perfect game for parents looking for fun new ways to connect with their kids, or friends just looking to share a few laughs.
- Great online play: Up to four players can gather together in the family room to play, or join a game on Xbox LIVE, and take the party global.