CERO: A (ESRB: E)
Released: July 1, 2010
The Taiko no Tatsujin series has enjoyed a long and storied past in Japan. With over 40 games released on multiple platforms, this little music game that started out as an arcade machine has grown to magnificent heights. Only one Taiko no Tatsujin game has ever been released in America; Taiko Drum Master on the Playstation 2. Taiko no Tatsujin DS: Dororon! Yokai Daikessen!!, alternatively known as Taiko DS 3 is the best of the trio of DS games in terms of features and playability.
It is highly debated which of the three Taiko games on the DS has the best song selection. If this is a major concern for you, be sure to look up which game has more songs you enjoy. The third game has a grand total of 51 songs, some of which need to be unlocked. The categories of music include J-Pop, Variety, Classic, Game Music, Namco Original, and Anime. Most of these are self-explanatory, and if you listen to a lot of that particular genre you will enjoy the song selection much more. Variety songs are comprised of music from advertisements and, interestingly enough, an Engrish cover of Michael Jackson’s Thriller.
The game can be controlled with either a stylus (But two are better for rolls!) or face buttons. The L and R button will hit the blue “shoulder” prompts, and the d-pad or ABXY buttons will hit the red “middle” prompts.
Playing Odore Dore Dora Doraemon Ondo.
The primary reason to choose the third game over the first two is the inclusion of a 7~10 hour RPG mode. You play as Don, the Taiko on the cover of the game, and are transported back in time where you must find the father of a young raccoon girl. Battle are handled by having the player play a song. Each note you hit does a set amount of damage to the enemy, based on your level and equipment Sometimes it will be a song from the game’s track list, and other times it will be a simpler song that can only be found in this mode. Each enemy has their own song, but you won’t have to play the song multiple times in a row, since the game alternates enemies, ensuring you don’t get too tired of combat. With the money you gain from battles, you can buy equipment to improve your stats and customize your character. Some of these are gag items, such as a drum in the shape of a…er…butt that makes farting noises when you drum. All of these items can be used in the regular quick play mode, granting even more incentive to play the RPG mode.
The first boss is a really cute Wanyudo.
The language barrier that prevents a lot of importers is nearly nonexistent in this game. If you have a basic grasp of katakana, you can make it through the game with relative ease. If you have no knowledge of Japanese whatsoever, trial and error is a very viable solution. There are only two or three spots where it is not painfully obvious how to continue, and a quick online search can solve your problem.
Immediately upon start up, it is evident that the game has very clean graphics. Every pixel is perfectly situated, creating a very aesthetic experience. All of the character designs are achingly cute. The artists managed to make the most terrifying monsters of Japanese myth into cute blobs.
The house where you can customize your character and read mail.
Really high quality stuff here. The sound effects are cute and spot-on. At least one of the songs included will be something you love, and you might discover new stuff you never thought you might like. There’s no possible way I could discredit the sound portion both because of the number of songs available as well as the fact that two of them are from Ghibli films.
Taiko DS 3 is a really great music game, easily one of the best music games on DS. If you’re going to import a game and already have the most popular imports, go for something a bit more obscure like this.
Taiko DS 3 can be found on Play-Asia for a little over $60.