Super Monkey Ball’s infectious exuberance mixed with its simplicity established it as one of Sega’s most popular franchises. Like a tilt maze, the colorful game asked players to move the world around its plastic ball-bound primates instead of the characters themselves. From its joyful first iteration as an arcade title with a banana-shaped joystick, the series has spawned around 19 instalments including remakes and mobile ports. But the gap between games had grown as the franchise struggled to make the transition back to consoles from handhelds. Just over two years since its last release —a remaster of the Wii’s Super Monkey Ball: Banana Blitz —Sega is preparing a bonanza of chimp hijinks.
The company announced today that Super Monkey Ball: Banana Mania, a remake of the franchise’s first three titles complete with a HD sheen, will land on PC and consoles on October 5th. As part of the remaster, Sega recreated over 300 levels and mazes and 12 mini games from Super Monkey Ball, Super Monkey Ball 2 and Super Monkey Ball Deluxe. Your ultimate goal remains the same: Roll, tilt and bounce your way through a series of radiant worlds as the lovable chimp AiAi and his troop of cute pals.
The remake will also let you team up with friends in a four-player local coop mode, offer online challenges and leaderboards and new playable characters. Super Monkey Ball: Banana Mania will launch on Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X/S and last-gen consoles for $40, along with PCs via Steam for $30.
The release coincides with the 20th anniversary of the series and Sega has a bunch of extras planned to celebrate the milestone. It’s also offering a digital deluxe edition for $50, complete with extra character and console skins and new items, plus the original soundtrack. A 20th anniversary edition featuring an art book and special cover and sleeve, along with ten cosmetic items, will also be available at retailers — though Sega did not disclose its price at the time of writing.
Five years seperated 2014’s Super Monkey Ball Bounce on mobile and 2019’s Super Monkey Ball Banana Blitz HD on PC and consoles. While the future of the franchise remains unknown, Sega will be hoping that its new bundle will be enough to tide fans over and, maybe, even indicate how much appetite there is for an actual new adventure.
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