I LOVE(d) RHYTHM GAMES.
Past-tense is probably the best response to the heading. I do love rhythm games, but maybe this is due to the nostalgia of it; Something which made my dancing feet move (literally at times).
Jungle Beat Groove Party. Britney’s Dance Beat. Gitaroo Man. Parappa The Rapper. Um Jammer Lammy.
But not Patapon. Mostly because the title was on the PSP and I had abandoned ship on it even though I loved the UMD’s (so futuristic!). I’d played the first Remaster briefly and got the gist of it. I also forgot to share impressions of it, because I’m useless. So I kind of knew what I was getting into with Patapon 2.
Until it fell apart. Sort of.
I was NOT having a good time with Patapon 2 at all. Not trying to flex, but I’m very lucky to be playing it on a 4K TV with the PlayStation 4 Pro. The up-scaling work they’ve done is phenomenal, with the game looking like a sharply animated cartoon. It’s a pity though, that the minute amount of cinematics which play throughout the game aren’t; Except for one which is re-animated which was a bit weird. But when I was trying to pata-pata-pata-pon, I could pata-pata-pata-NOT. The audio was just not working with me and I deleted the game out of frustation.
Yes, I could not commit to the content.
Funny thing is, it helped me learn that the file size is 1.923GB so you can download it again very quickly if you ever feel as frustrated as me.
While trying to remedy said frustration, I checked if there were timing or audio settings in the Settings. There were not. So I thought the last drastic measure, would be to use my PlayStation Platinum headphones.
“Hello Aladdin? I’d like to report a whole new world.”
Synchronicity fell into place, as the 4-beat structure resonated throughout my skull; “Oh you want me to hit it in time WITH THIS BEAT“. I don’t know ultimately what the cause is; Whether it’s the running in 4K or faux-latency from sound being produced by the same piece of hardware, I don’t know. It was simply a revelation to finally be albe to PLAY the game.
The Patapons are back home!
I legitimately thought they were going somewhere, but it’s still Patapolis. Which is cute! It’s just NEW PARTS of Patapolis. Which is fun! And there’s returning enemies? Which is…hmmm. OKAY! But there are new classes and heroes! If you’ve never played Patapon, it’s a rhythm game with RPG elements. You are the god with whatever name you give it (please don’t name it ‘POOP’), and the Pons are your loyal subjects. This is potentially some riff on how music saves, but in this case it does as you drum your miracle drum that leads the Pon forth. They can’t do anything outside of the village without your guidance, so accept your new life as a drum-lord. 4-beat combinations tell them to walk, attack and more as you attempt to fulfill their need to get to Earthend.
While you do so, you’ll collect loot to equip your different Pons with, collect heroes who f*ck everything up and meet a guy named Gong. Apparently he’s bad, but so far I’m unsure to what extent. Completing levels fills the coffers of which you can level up your Pons, and while you may lose them in the battlefield, you can bury them and they come back to life in some terrifying Pet Sematary-esque-like fashion. You also birth new Pons the same way so…it’s…yeah.
Lacking auto-save in 2020 is very confident, but I appreciate them doing so as our diminishing attention to anything in this age could do with a wake-up call.
Patapon 2 ended up rocking my socks off after I got around the audio issues.
Once it settled into its beat-narrative, I was having a tonne of fun. I was humming along to the beat, double-checking what my plan of attack was and hoping I had my Pons kitted out in their best wares. Knowing I’ve got a lot more ahead of me, with mini-games, more bosses and a comprehensive list of trophies to work through, it’s hard not to recommend Patapon 2. And at only $23.95, it provides a barrel of fun at a bargain.
Now let me go Pata-Pata-Pata-PON just PON more time.
XENOJAY.COM was supplied with a media copy of the game for review by Sony, and it was played on the PlayStation 4 Pro console.