Sep 29, 2008

Samba de Hell - Sega hates you

It pains me that I've come to this conclusion, but after a few days now with Samba de Amigo I'm left with no alternate explanation: Sega hates you.

Let me explain myself first. Since the 16-bit era, I've been a Sega fanboy. But it seems like once Sega killed the Dreamcast, and Sega turned into a software company, their products took a turn for the worse. No game has since wowed me, and with the exception of Super Monkey Ball (and its sequels), and maybe the Sonic Rushes for the DS, I can't think of any Sega game that has even been worth my time.

Throughout these troubled times, my fanboyism kept thinking of excuses on how this could be. Sega's games were sub-par, but they were at least trying to move things in a new direction, right? Surely, you can't fault them for failing at tinkering with winning formulas in hopes that they becomes winning-er formulas.

Enter Samba de Amigo for the Wii. This was a game that I was really looking forward to as it was one of my favorite games on the Dreamcast. I've put in about 3 hours into it, which is approximately 2 more than any sane human should. It's not that it's completely terrible - it isn't. It's obvious some of the old monkey-maraca magic is there, and I've had fleeting moments of ecstasy playing it.

But the problem lies in the controls. Anything difficulty over Medium is mind-bogglingly asinine. You can't accurately control what's a high-, medium-, or low-shake of the maracas when the beats come at you quickly. You simply can't control your maracas.

It got so bad I had to put the game down because the urge to strangle myself with the wiimote-nunchuck cord was overwhelming.

Seriously, Sega, 1 hour of play testing would have told you this was horrible. Not mediocre, horrible. 1 hour of play testing would have told you that this game should not have been released. Maybe it's a limitation with the controllers, I don't know... but there is no reason this game should have ever been released unless you truly hate your customers.

Which I now suspect you do.

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