This is my first attempt at an OP, and I know they generally tend to be flashy, funny and an all around source of good information - but I'm at work and can't make a couple of those things happen right now. So if this thread ends up staying the place where all Samba stuff goes, I promise to add some pictures and expand the info as it becomes available.
What is Samba De Amigo?
First, theres this:
Samba de Amigo is pure fun on a disc. Way before the days of Guitar Hero, if you wanted to pretend to play instruments in your home, you only had one choice - buy a Dreamcast and plop down around $80 on some awesome maraca controllers. The maracas worked with some lenses sending a signal down to the mat you stood on. There was a bar towards the front of the mat, and the lenses on the maraca cords could tell how high and low you were holding your maracas after you input your height. It wasn't the most accurate thing in the world, but I'd say it worked almost 75% of the time, and was pretty awesome, because that maracas were actually maracas. You shook them and they made that signature maraca sound.
How do you samba?
A ring of circles appear in the screen. If you split that ring down the center, you have 3 circles per side. Balls come out of the center of the ring, and head towards a circle. Say a ball is headed for the upper right. You take your right arm, raise it up high (and youll see the circle change slightly, to indicate the maraca is high enough) and shake it as the ball hits the center. Hooray, you got some points!
Now the skill comes in when you have balls flying to the right and left at the same time, at oppisite heights. It creates some sweet moves as you raise one arm while lowering the other, and shake to the beats. When the balls are red, you just keep on shakin' till the stop. Usually, I would also lean back and yell "Aiaiaiaiaiaiaiaiai!".
There's also 'poses'! A little stick figure will show up in the ring, holding his/her maracas in some awesome way. Maybe both over the head, maybe one up one down, who knows! Copy that pose and hold it for some points! Japan's "Samba de Amigo ver 2000" (the YEAR 2000), incorporated movement to these poses. The stick man would sway his arms and swing them around, passing through the circles in the ring, and you'd have to copy at the same speed. Due to the sensors thriving on your maracas staying above them, this was pretty impossible, as they'd usually lose you when you moved your right hand to the left side, and vice versa.
What about this wii version?
To be honest, I'm lacking some research here. All I know is it's announced, and I haven't seen anything that suggests we'll be using anything other than wiimotes and nunchucks. I've seen people argue on various message boards that it's going to need TWO wiimotes, but have never seen Sega say that. The sad thing is that there's no talk of actual maracas. With plastic shells like the Wii Zapper and Wii Wheel doing so well, I'd be very shocked and dissapointed if Sega didn't make some Wii-racas. The fact that shaking them produced real sound on the Dreamcast version added so much to the game, in both ease (much like the clicky strum people in GH got used to, hearing the maraca match the music made it easier!), and just overall awesome. Pretending to maraca without hearing anything may suck.
Some more info from an IGN article about playing the game mentions that vibration replaces the maraca sound, and that - as always - your Mii's are around! Also, the multi-player that I never could afford to play returns, including the mode called "Love Love". If I remember the description from the manual correctly, you were supposed to play a song along with someone, and depending on how well you matched, it would give you a score based on how "in love" you were with that person. Basically, if you both get 100%, you're in love! If you get 100% and your cousing gets 50%, you're NOT in love! And thats the way it should be!
There are no peripherals for the Wii version, though. Players can use either two Remotes or a Remote and Nunchuk. It might take some getting used to for seasoned Samba players, but we found the control scheme worked well.
Along with the regular shakes there is a "vibrate" mechanic where you agitate the remotes quickly in place. We definitely miss the sound of the old maraca controllers, but the Wii Remotes perform just as well otherwise. The pose moments have been retained, requiring the player to vogue at key moments in the song.
Visually the game looks great. There are a few jaggies but so much zany activity is going on in the background they're easy to forget.
There are several game modes including quick play, multiplayer, and something called "Love Love."
The game supports your Miis and will display them next to your score. Their expressions will change based on your performance, giving you one of three indicators (bad, medium, or good).
Here's some brightly colored screens, thanks to toxk:
Whats this DLC talk? The wii can't do DLC! And why would SAMBA?
I was a Dreamcast nut, which meant I used the web browser, just because. I always had my DC plugged into my phone line, much to the anger of my parents who never got any calls because I was watching a page load slowly, or attempting to play Alien Front Online. But Samba actually HAD SOME DLC! On the Dreamcast! Songs took up 2 spaces on the memory card, and I remember bragging to my friends about how this game would never stop being fun because I'd always have new songs. The songs were every Sega fans dream - we got Open Your Heart, from Sonic Adventure. We had the Burning Racers theme. We had the NiGHTS theme. We got a ton of random japaneese stuff. In fact, here's a full list!
"After Burner" - from After Burner. Composed by Hiroshi "Hiro" Kawaguchi.
"(Angels With) Burning Hearts" - from Burning Rangers. Composed by Naofumi Hataya.
"Dreams Dreams" - from Nights into Dreams.... Composed by Tomoko Sasaki.
"Magical Sound Shower" - from Out Run. Composed by Hiroshi "Hiro" Kawaguchi.
"Opa-Opa!" - from Fantasy Zone. Composed by Hiroshi "Hiro" Kawaguchi.
"Open Your Heart" - from Sonic Adventure. Performed by Crush 40.
"Rent-A-Hero no.1" - from Rent-A-Hero no.1
"Sonic - You Can Do Anything" - from Sonic the Hedgehog CD (original soundtrack). Composed by Masafumi Ogata, vocals by Keiko Utoku.
"Super Sonic Racing" - from Sonic R. composed by Richard Jacques, vocals by T.J. Davis.
And after Version 2000 came out, these popped up (although I never knew that, so I never played them...dammit, Jet Grind songs!)
"It Doesn't Matter" - from Sonic Adventure. Performed by Tony Harnell.
"Lazy Days (Livin' in Paradise)" - from Sonic Adventure.
"Let Mom Sleep" - from Jet Set Radio. Composed by Hideki Naganuma.
"Let's Go Away" - from Daytona USA. Composed by Takenobu Mitsuyoshi.
"My Sweet Passion" - from Sonic Adventure. Performed by Nikki Gregoroff.
"We Are Burning Rangers" - from Burning Rangers. Composed by Naofumi Hataya.
So, obviously, Sega likes giving Samba new songs! How does this factor to the wii? A recent box art shot shows the Wii's "Pay To Play" logo on it!
What else COULD that mean? Well, I guess you could pay a monthly fee for some online Samba-off's, but I don't see who would ever want to do that. Take all this as a rumor, but the Samba series has pushed the boundries of console DLC in the past!
What tunes are we looking at here?
Hah, funny you should ask that. Just know that the majority are very fun. It ranges from crazy latin hits to songs that make zero sense whatsoever. Ever wanted to add some latin flair to the Rocky theme? You could! Did it sound good? No way! Planning a latin themed wedding? Good thing the "Wedding March" was a stage!
Here's a full list:
"Al Compás Del Mambo" / "Mambo Beat" - Perez Prado
"The Cup of Life" - Ricky Martin
"El Ritmo Tropical (El Bimbo)" - Dixie's Gang
"La Bamba" - Richie Valens
"Livin' la Vida Loca" - Ricky Martin
"Love Lease" - Masao Honda
"Macarena" - Los Del Rio
"Mas Que Nada" - Jorge Ben
"El Mambo" - Solemar
"Samba de Janeiro" - Bellini
"Samba de Amigo (Samba de Janeiro 2000)" - Bellini. Remix of "Samba de Janeiro" by P.K.G. Production
"Soul Bossa Nova" - Quincy Jones
"Take on Me" - Reel Big Fish. Cover of the song by A-Ha.
"Tequila" - The Champs
"The Theme of Inoki" / "Ali Bombaye" - Michael Masser. Originally composed for the 1977 film The Greatest, and modified to be the theme song of wrestler Antonio Inoki.
"Tubthumping" - No Smoking. Cover of the song by Chumbawamba.
Yeah - a mix of some great songs, and some very very odd choices. And some Japaneese stuff that I remember thinking was alright.
Ver 2000 had some awesome hits and some extreme misses with:
"Bamboleo" - Gipsy Kings
"Cha Cha Cuba" - Matt Bianco
"Djobi Djoba" - Gipsy Kings
"Games People Play" - Inner Circle
"The Theme of Rocky" / "Gonna Fly Now" - Bill Conti
"Hot Hot Hot" - Arrow
"Mambo de Verano" - Masaru Setsumaru
"Salome" - Chayanne
"S.O.S. (The Tiger Took My Family)" - Dr. Bombay
"(Mucho Mambo) Sway" - Shaft
"Tout Tout Pour Ma Chérie" - Michel Polnareff
"Vamos a Carnaval" - Tomoko Sasaki and Naofumi Hataya
"Volare" - Gipsy Kings
"Wedding March" - Felix Mendelssohn
"Games People Play" was by far and away the best song in the whole series. Perfection.
No songs for the Wii game have been announced, that I can find.
How do I end OPs?
Seriously. With like a conclusion? Like a paper?
In conclusion, the past Samba games were really fun, and great party games. They had multi-player, but I can't even mention it because I never had the money to get a SECOND maraca/pad set. But just passing the maracas around is awesome. But a samba game WITHOUT maracas would be weak. So I'll keep my eye on the Wii version as things develop.