Patapon: I Got the Beat!
TomChick - News - 03/03/08 - Link

After ten hours of Patapon, I can count a four-beat like you wouldn't believe. Check this out:

ONE two THREE four, ONE two THREE four, ONE two THREE four.

I can do that all night. And I have, too! Sometimes I don't even have to tap my foot or nod my head. I can even do it while a rambunctious tribe of tiny warriors with their hobbyhorse Kipabons and leaping Yumipons are doing their best to screw up my timing by yipping and singing at varying volumes. But I love these little guys, and I don't mind saying that Meden is kind of hot. But my heart belongs to the Kipabons, who are the best presentation of cavalry since the Rohirrim in Battle for Middle Earth II. Heck, maybe even better, since I didn't have to see a movie to appreciate the Kipabons.

There are actually some interesting parallels between Patapon and an RTS, but I've been enjoying the game too much to try to puzzle them out. The more apt comparison -- which won't make sense to anyone under 30 -- is to The Ancient Art of War, another real-time side-scrolling heavily abstracted battle simulator. Ancient Art of War didn't rock out quite so much, though. I didn't reach for the headphones every time I wanted to enjoy Ancient Art of War.

What really knocks my socks off when I play Patapon is the combination of music and artwork. It's the most charming thing I've seen since Katamari Damacy. But cuter, since it's not so weird. Heck, it's even cuter than Chibi-Robo, and that's saying a lot! Unfortunately, I think Iím near the end of Patapon. And as the challenge level reaches its peak, I'm losing patience with some of the harder missions. But even if I were to stop playing tonight, Patapon will be one of the first things I'd think of next time someone posts in the forum one of those "Hey, guys, I just got a PSP! What games should I get?" threads!



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