Sony Computer Entertainment Patapon
- Team mates have quirky characteristics, minimalist control scheme and captivating essence
- If you're rhythmically challenged you may find this hard to play!
Patapon is based on controlling your team of warriors through rhythm. It's a strange and unusual game, but lots of fun to play.
Price$ 59.95 (AUD)
Best Deals (Selling at 3 stores)
A funky visual vibe mashed up with a unique, rhythm based control scheme equals a bona fide hit for the PSP. From the creators of the happy-go-lucky Locoroco comes another charming title, Patapon!
LocoRoco's bright and sunny outlook hit the PSP like a ton of Nerf bricks, and drilled home the point that you don't have to be constantly mashing buttons to have fun. The creators have since moved on from what's been called the world's happiest game and developed Patapon, a unique and charming game that takes its minimalist control scheme and captivating essence in a much more combative direction.
The Patapons are a tribe of two-dimensional warriors on their way to Earthend, but all manner of enemies and obstacles lie between them and their goal, and only their deity that would be you can lead them to their destiny. The basic setup might seem broad and familiar, but the execution of it is anything but, and your first clue to Patapon's unique nature is its eye-catching art direction. The three spear-throwers you start with are just hollow circles on legs, with a single inky dot for an eye rolling around the interior, and yet they're filled with personality, from the way they twirl their weapons in the air to the fierce expressions they don when they enter combat.
The word "idiosyncratic" doesn't begin to cover it. From the ever-changing palette of the landscapes you'll traverse to battles with fire-breathing bosses and rival Zigoton forces, Patapon bursts with shadow puppetry theatrics and visual charm. Screenshots can give you a good feeling for the character designs and scenery, but to see the whole affair in motion is a minor revelation, like a child prodigy's drawing come to life, brimming with imagination. This display of inspired aesthetics might not do much to tax the hardware, but no other game looks anything like it.
Human Beat Box
Mind you, you don't so much command these quirky abstract misfits as guide them. Your control over this crew is strictly indirect, relying entirely on their shared love of diverse music. Rather than fiddle with the directional pad or analogue nub to manoeuvre them around, or issue orders to individual soldiers like a traditional real-time strategy general, you rally your entire crew by drumming out four-beat tattoos on the drums you acquire over the first few hours, and listen to their enthusiastic performance while mulling over your next move. Each drum makes a unique sound pon, pata, chaka, and don and you string them together into short songs that tell the troops to attack, defend, march, and so on.
Though the tempo is forever constant, the music becomes more and more elaborate as your forces get into the groove, simultaneously helping you with staccato chants and hindering you with off-beat embellishments and free-form vocal breaks. How well you stay on the beat determines the quality of sound you get from each drum hit, which in turn influences the strength of your squad's actions. Scoring successive combos can mean the difference between your troops tossing out a handful of ineffectual arrows versus a powerful shower of pointy death.
Join the PC World newsletter!
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Google Pixel XL full, in-depth smartphone review: Phones just got smarter
- 2 Sony Xperia XZ review: turbo-charged last-gen phone
- 3 Sony X9300D and X8500D UHD 4K TV review
- 4 Hisense Series 7 ULED 4K UHD TV review
- 5 Moto X Force review: Leading features from a mid-range phone
Latest News Articles
- This week in games: Diablo 4 whispers, Civilization VI launch
- The Nintendo Switch is a radical mash-up of consoles and gaming handhelds
- Halo Wars 2 hands-on preview: Blitz mode's thrilling twists could trigger an RTS revival
- The Xbox One's first email app is here, and it's not Outlook
- This week in games: Tyranny snags a release date, polygonal Lara Croft returns
GGG Evaluation Team
First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.
For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.
The Fujitsu LifeBook UH574 allowed for great mobility without being obnoxiously heavy or clunky. Its twelve hours of battery life did not disappoint.
The screen was particularly good. It is bright and visible from most angles, however heat is an issue, particularly around the Windows button on the front, and on the back where the battery housing is located.
My first impression after unboxing the Q702 is that it is a nice looking unit. Styling is somewhat minimalist but very effective. The tablet part, once detached, has a nice weight, and no buttons or switches are located in awkward or intrusive positions.
- Google Pixel XL full, in-depth smartphone review: The new best Android phone
- Japan Robot, gadget and car expo slideshow
- Panasonic DX900U UHD 4K smart TV review: Best all-round TV ever?
- What's the difference between an Intel Core i3, i5 and i7?
- Laser vs. inkjet printers: which is better?
- CCSenior Web DeveloperNSW
- FTCRM AdministratorACT
- CCContract IT Assistant (UNIX/Windows) 161028/ITA/003Asia
- CCSenior Java DeveloperNSW
- CCMicrosoft AX Support AnalystsQLD
- CCSenior Project Manager (Marketing Automation)NSW
- FTSOE ConsultantACT
- CCContract Systems Analyst (JAVA/J2EE/Web) 161014/SA/922Asia
- CCImplementation ManagerVIC
- CCWeb Programmer - Sydney - GovernmentNSW
- FTMobile DeveloperNSW
- FTSenior Full Stack DeveloperNSW
- CCService Analyst (12-month contract)Asia
- FTSr. Insight SpecialistVIC
- TPSolution Architect - PortalWA
- FTLevel 1- 2 Helpdesk SupportVIC
- CCContract Programmer (Internet/Intranet) 161019/P/615Asia
- FTBusiness/Technical Consultant (CPM)QLD
- FTData Governance Project Manager | 6 month ContractNSW
- FTMicrosoft Dynamics AX Manufacturing ConsultantQLD
- CCContract Analyst Programmer (IT Security) 161018/AP/383Asia
- FTSenior Murex DeveloperVIC
- FTSolution Architect - Application IntegrationQLD
- CCSolutions Architect (Big Data Concepts / Fraud) - Finance - Contract - SydneyCBDNSW
- CCSenior Security EngineerNSW