No maracas needed as Samba de Amigo: Party-To-Go hits Apple Arcade

Samba de Amigo - Party-To-Go screenshot
(Image credit: Apple)
Samba de Amigo: Party-To-Go

Samba de Amigo - Party-To-Go app icon

(Image credit: Apple)

iPadOS / iOS / MacOS Free with in-app purchases

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Apple Arcade regularly throws up some familiar names from gaming’s past, and the latest helping of new titles to the service is no different, with a classic Sega rhythm game among the new batch offerings now available to subscribers.

Samba de Amigo originally hit arcades back in 1999, before being a big hit on home consoles like Sega’s Dreamcast and the Nintendo Wii.

Putting a Latin American spin on the rhythm game genre the original game had you shaking maraca-shaped controllers in time with hits of the day in order to help Brazilian monkey Samba entertain the on-screen crowd.

Titled Samba de Amigo: Party-To-Go, this new iOS addition to the series unsurprisingly does away with the plastic maracas, yet manages to maintain the frantic fun essence of the original.

Players now have to tap a series of on-screen rings at the right time to over 40 different tracks, while Samba cuts some rug in a number of familiar Sega-themed environments.

Tapping in time is less of a stretch with a controller

A version of this game also recently appeared on Nintendo Switch (Samba de Amigo: Party Central), but Apple device owners get a couple of key additions here. 

There’s the bonus of three exclusive tracks to play, with PSY’s “DADDY (feat. CL)”, Lady Gaga’s “The Edge of Glory” and “The Walker” from Fitz and the Tantrums that are unique to this version of the game, while there’s also an exclusive Story Mode, allowing you to follow Amigo the monkey as he tries to reclaim music that has vanished from the world. 

While the control system works well on smaller iPhones, in our experience if you’re using a bigger Max handset or iPad the game plays much better if you use an optional Bluetooth controller as those rings become a bit of a stretch to reach in time on larger handsets.

While the story mode won’t win any plaudits for its longevity, Samba de Amigo: Party-To-Go certainly delivers on the easy-entry, quick-blast of fun premise of Apple Arcade and is well worth a download for subscribers.


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Kevin Lynch

Kevin Lynch is a London-born, Dublin-based writer and journalist. 

He started out as a music writer in the late 1990s, before moving to the Daily Mirror to become the newspaper’s technology editor, during which time he wrote a weekly column that saw him chart the boom of consumer tech and gaming as well as the resurrection and rise of Apple Inc. 

He has also served as editor of and has been a member of the judging panel for the BAFTA British Academy Video Game Awards.