Review by SilverBullet00

"Volcano goddess? Wild boars? Shrunken heads? What kind of game is this? It's Ooga Booga!"

Visual Concepts' online action/strategy game for the Dreamcast is your basic multi-player funfest, but with a wacky twist. Everything has gone Polynesian Style! Rather than running around with heavy weaponry, you are in control of a tribal witch doctor battling for the position of favorite for the goddess, Ooga Booga.

Game Play: 10/10

The moment I picked up this game I didn't want to stop. It just drew me in. The fact that I was casting magical spells rather than shooting someone full of ammunition made me want to play even more. There are three modes of play to choose from when you start the game. The first mode is Tribal Trial (single player). This is your basic set of missions you need to complete in order to advance in the game. Beating these missions unlocks extras for Offline and Online mode. There are three types of missions you can participate in. The first is Smakahuna. This is your basic free-for-all. Second is Boar Polo. For this you are on a giant play field with a ball in the center and two goals for each team. The objective is to get the ball into the other team’s goal. It’s pretty much soccer except for the fact that you can ride a boar to move the ball. The final one is Rodeo. This plays basically like Smakahuna, but with a catch. Only way for you to score points is to either: 1) Hit your opponents while you are on a boar or 2) Knock your opponent off of the boar. The second mode is Offline Skirmish (multi-player). This is where you grab a couple of friends and duke it out, which doctor style! The final mode is Online. Not too much to explain here. It shows you your current Internet settings (if you haven’t set them up yet, you can now) and allows you to dial into the server. Follow the onscreen instructions and you’re ready to play! (Note: Online play now requires a SegaNet account.) The way the winner is decided in a game is that each player is awarded points on how he/she dealt damage. There are many items to help you deal damage to the other players. First of all, there is the unarmed combat, the smack. Tap the “A” button and your witch doctor swings his/her staff in an attempt to hit something. Tapping the “X” button and you will toss a shrunken head (more on that later). Tapping the “Y” button allows you to switch you current spell if you have another. Tapping the “B” button allows you to cast a spell. The most used items in the game are the spells. The spells will vary from a fireball to a proximity mine to a homing missile! These are basic spells and the more advanced spells need to be unlocked through game play. Then there is the shrunken head (grenade). Shrunken heads are so plentiful on the islands that they literally hang from trees. Toss this at someone and, if it hits, you score points. There are also animals to help you fight the other witch doctors. Wild boars and island birds will lend a hand to you. Before they help you, you will need to stun them using the smack attack. Players with the most points at the end of the round are awarded coins. Three coins are awarded for first place, two coins for second place and one coin for third. Requirements for each level vary. On one level, you may need only 5 coins to proceed. On others, you may need up to 10+ coins in order to proceed. While the game is awarding you coins, you get the change to taunt an opponent by pressing either the “A”, “B”, “X” or “Y” buttons.

Story: 7/10

Basically, you are trying to appease the goddess, Ooga Booga to have her favor you tribe more over other tribes. You go through trials and missions with other tribes to please your island deity. The more missions you complete, the better she like’s your tribe. She awards you greatly if she favors you the most.

Graphics: 9/10

The graphics in this game are just great. It runs really smooth thanks to the Dreamcast's processor. You can see everything quite clearly, from the waves one creates from falling in the water to the Dreamcast logos on the beachfront. When stunning an island bird, you see its feathers floats away after you hit it. You can see the faces on the shrunken heads, either on the ground or hanging from a tree, in good detail.

Sound: 8/10

While playing, the background music made me think of every surf song there was out there. The background music is very fitting for this game, giving you a feel of a dark jungle to a bright shorefront. I even found myself rocking to the music at certain points.

Replay Value: 9/10

With any multi-player game, replay value is always high. With hidden characters, spells and masks to unlock, you'll be playing this game for a little while. Even after you unlock all those, you’ll probably still be playing this game.

Overall: 9/10

I really liked this game. It left me glued to my Dreamcast for quite some time, even after I beat the game. It’s too bad this game doesn’t have a bigger fan base; this is a very fun and humorous game.

Buy or Rent?

If it is available in your area, you can try renting it to see if it fits you tastes. I highly suggest this a buy, though! You won’t be disappointed. Even if you don’t get a chance to play multi-player that often, this game will leave you with fond memories of tossing shrunken heads casting amazing spells and taunting other players.

Reviewer's Rating:   4.5 - Outstanding

Originally Posted: 06/28/02, Updated 06/28/02

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