October 3, 2018

Dreamcast 20 #15: Samba de Amigo

2018 marks the 20th anniversary of the Dreamcast, Sega's final - and in my opinion the finest - home videogame console. Despite a range of excellent games, it simply failed to compete against Sony's PlayStation 2. To celebrate, The Angriest counts down its 20 best games.

As I noted in an earlier review of Sega Bass Fishing 2, the Dreamcast was a console big on peripherals, with multiple titles making use of their own dedicated controllers. Samba de Amigo is another one. A charming rhythm action game, it's core appeal came in its own special extras: a pair of maracas.

Seriously, who doesn't want to play a smiling monkey shaking a pair of maracas in time with the music?

The game was developed by Sonic Team, based known for their titular hedgehog platformers. It was originally an arcade game, like many of the Dreamcast's popular titles, and presented a range of Latin and pop music. The Dreamcast version pretty much replicated the arcade edition. A sequel was released in Japan, but failed to make it to international markets before the Dreamcast collapsed. A Wii remake was released in 2007 that used the Wii controllers in lieu of the dedicated maracas.

While the game is simple and indeed relatively limited, it is loaded with charm. It's simply a delight to play, particularly with friends. In many ways in foreshadows the kinds of simple motion-based titles that make Nintendo's Wii such a success - and it's no surprise that Sega released the remake to that platform as a result.

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