The Patapon are at war again and need God’s drum beats to march to victory. After Haripon’s ship crashes he awakens to your rhythm after and sets out to find survivors. If this sounds a lot like Patapon you’re right. Sony didn’t deviate much from the formula of the first game. Instead they expanded upon it by adding new elements like hero Patapons. You meet your first hero trapped underneath a rock separating your small army of spear throwing Patapon from a fire breathing Dondonga.
Save him and you get to name him. Yes, this Patapon is that special. I stuck with the default name “hero” and brought him on a mission to crush an enemy base. The hero Patapon did more damage than a regular spear throwing Yaripon and has a special attack. If you’re in fever mode and hit the drums perfectly on beat the hero Patapon tosses a spear with a green aura. This spear does about 2x – 3x his regular attack which is already around 2x a regular Yaripon. The glowing spear also releases a wide green cloud that damages a group of enemies. Since the Zigoton, the rival tribe of the Patapon, tend to cluster together the toxic green cloud is debilitating. To balance out the game Patapon 2 piles more Zigoton on the screen which makes for some chaotic fights. The other ability my hero Patapon had in the demo is he can respawn on the battlefield. If your hero dies a ten second counter appears above his picture. When the countdown ends he magically appears on the battlefield with full HP.
The basic Patapon can upgrade to becomr more effective too by utilizing the evolution system. By gathering items you can change a normal Yaripon to a PyoPyo, a walking eyeball with rabbit ears. If you include the normal form there are eighteen possible evolutions for the Patapon shown on the evolution tree. Since evolving Patapon requires items you’re showered with items during the missions.
I turned one of my Yaripon into a PyoPyo and switched an axe wielding Tatepon into a purple eye with cat ears before setting off for the final mission in the demo. In this stage I fought the Bocchichi, a giant bird. I struck first with a wave of arrows and spears. The bird retaliated by pecking the ground which directly hit my spear line. Then the flightless bird jumped in the air and hit the Tatepon group with a ground pound. The bird’s most deadly attack is a blast of yellow gas from its behind that puts any Patapon it touches to sleep. While sleeping the Patapon are vulnerable and more importantly for the bird they can’t attack. I should have made more arrow shooting Yumipon. That would have made the fight a breeze, but thanks to the powerful hero Patapon and his glowing green spears I took the bird down. I also lost most of my army so the fight was really my hero Patapon and few survivors versus the bird boss. Stick tightly to the beat to activate the hero Patapon’s special attack was the key to victory.
Images courtesy of Sony.