LightStixx’s Review: Patapon (PSP)

Patapon Cover

LightStixx’s review for Playstation Portable (PSP) game: Patapon

Release date: 26 Feb 08

Price: Approx $40 from shops (based on Comics Connection).

Sales: Total (so far) – 30 K

Platform: Playstation Portable

IGN Review Score: 9.2

Hi all! Some of you might have seen my two previous reviews on RE:UC & Lego Star Wars. This would be my first review as a proud member of GameFront. I hope to continue to bring reviews to you as much as possible. Now, let’s get on with the review…

My scores are as follows:

Gameplay: 9.0
Story: 6.0
Fun-level: 9.5
Graphics: 7.0
Music: 9.5
Replayability: 7.0
Online quality: N.A.
Overall score: 8.0

So let’s break it down.


This game starts with you signing a contract to guide the Patapons to the edge of the world. Then you realise that you’re playing the role of the Almighty of the Patapon tribe. So the journey begins…


You start out by beating your drum to revitalise the Patapon flag bearer. He then teaches you the basics of the Patapon commands, soon you’ll be collecting “Heroic Memories” and other such stuff that allow you to create units and unlock minigames. The stuff you collect bring you closer to bringing your Patapon tribe to the edge of the world to fulfil the prophecy of seeing IT there. Along the way, you’ll need to fight many legendary creature bosses as well as the Zitigon tribe, the Patapon’s arch nemesis who would do all in their power to halt your progress.

I don’t want to be a spoiler, but I have to comment that I was a little disappointed with the ending. However upon looking back at it’s background and cute innocence, I realised that I was probably asking for too much. Well, I will definitely not reveal the ending on GameFront. Please play the game and find out the ending for yourself.

Patapons VS Zitigons

Patapons VS Zitigons: Who will triumph?
You decide.


The gameplay for this title is entirely musical. Controlling the Patapons are done a sequence of 4 shape buttons of the PSP. This is done in a very cute manner, with the Patapons calling out the command given in the subsequent 4 beats. Continually sending commands in 8 beat repetitions results in a “conversation” of commands and acknowledgement between you and the Patapons.

Commands available at the beginning would be “advance” and “attack”, subsequently learning to “defend”, “retreat”, “charge” and “calling a miracle” (not in this particular order). Chaining the sequences of commands would result in a “Fever” which boosts the effectiveness of the troops, making fighting easier. However if you screw it up, the Patapons will be dumbfounded and stop in their tracks. Throwing your rhythm off track at the same time. Let me try to cite an example:

Each word represents one beat, so:

You: Pon Pon Pata Pon (Attack command)
Patapons: Pon Pon Pata Pon (Attacking while chanting)
You: Pon Pon Pata Pon
Patapons: Pon Pon Pata Pon (Attacking while chanting)
You: Pon Pon Pon Pon
Patapons: Pon Pon Pata Pon (Attacking while chanting)

In other words, one set of your commands and their acknowledgment will take 8 beats in total. I know this may sound a little confusing right now, so this video should help you understand. [Note: The video features Japanese gameplay, but do not worry!! The US & Europe versions are both out already.]

You start out with only 1 type of fighting troop, the Yaripon (spearman). The types of units you’re able to get also gets more and more as the game progresses ultimately earning you an array of 7 types of fighting troops, but only 3 types can be chosen to fight in each battle (as seen in the youtube video). These troops each has its own pros and cons, so you can maximize their capabilities for each battle.

Along the way, you’ll also find equipment that would boost your attack and defensive capabilities. These equipment include super rare Ancient equipments, which speed up your troops greatly. Equipping the right equipment would do wonders to your fight. Later on, a minigame will allow you to make Legendary equipment that promises large boosts to attack and defence, while speeding up the unit.

There are 4 Miracles that can be found and used in this game. They are helpful in many different situations and certain levels cannot be passed without them. Bringing the right miracle to battle makes a world of difference, so be sure to check that.

Initially the game is relatively easy, such that you could easily complete the level without maintaining fever mode. However, all stages could be completed without fever, but fever definitely helps ALOT. Along the way, rare drops will be found and they will allow you to create stronger Patapons called Rarepons (Rare Patapons). They are differentiated by colour and each has its unique powerups, ranging from faster speed to attack boost. Each Rarepon type costs a certain amount of its original price.


Rarepons are different in colour and statistics. The extreme right “Angel Wings” Rarepon is the most expensive Rarepon, costing 7x the normal cost and using the rarest materials.

Fun Factor

This game was great fun from start to finish, except for the few times when the bosses were slightly too difficult and your boys were slightly underpowered or under-equipped. In-game tips also tell you how to overcome such a situation, guiding you to farm for better equipment and Rarepons from bosses.

On the other hand, it can be very irritating when you lose your beat due to outside distractions. One example is when your handphone rings or when your brother asks you some dumb questions. All sense of rhythm goes haywire and your fever is lost. Sometimes it’s harmless (when you’re farming for food and money), sometimes it’s disastrous (when you’re fighting some boss). My piece of advice, turn your phone to silent mode and wear earphones.

Graphics & Music

As you guys should have seen by now, the graphics are very cool and simple. However, the graphics are mainly 2D, resulting in the low score. The cute graphics definitely add a friendly and fun aspect to this game.

The music in this game is all original, and they are quite addictive. In fact, I created a ringtone from the Patapon music. The music is pleasant and catchy, definitely a plus point for the game.

Minigames & Unlockables

There are many unlockables in this game, but most of them come to you sooner or later as part of the game. Through your journey, you’ll be able to unlock the enjoyable minigames at regular intervals. Early minigames offer rewards such as common tree branches, later on they offer rare ores and even legendary weapons. As you could guess, these games are also music based. Their inspiration range from jazz music to traditional Japanese percussion, which is very interesting to me. Some of them are even as catchy as the gameplay music.


This is the earliest minigame unlockable. You play the trumpet to accompany his humming. Doing this well will grant you tree branches as rewards.


Replayability on this game is basically “delete-save-file-and-play-all-over-again” because of the lack of other modes. However if you’d rather not do that, you’re given the option to fight the bosses over and over again, with the bosses growing increasingly strong each time. Although there is no known limit for this continuation, but it is likely that there would come a point when your team is already at the max that you could possibly achieve or want to achieve and the boss is just too strong for you to defeat. Apart from that, the minigames remain enjoyable, but it gets boring after a while.

Boss Fight

Boss fights may become boring after a while. Especially if the difficulty is getting too high.

Online Play

No online play whatsoever, no multiplayer option either.

What I like

  • Generally fun gameplay

  • Catchy music

  • Gentle learning/difficulty curve

What I don’t like

  • Needs my utmost attention for the few minutes of gameplay

  • Little replayability after completion

  • Lack of multiplayer mode


Overall, this game is enjoyable and even addictive. Thumbs up for this game, get it, play it.

Special Thanks

GameFront team for providing me the chance to share with the community.
My GF for recommending this game and proofreading my review.

Copyright issues

All media found on this review are not mine, only the opinions are mine.
Pictures are property of
Youtube video is property of DTVWChannel


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2 Responses to LightStixx’s Review: Patapon (PSP)

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