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Video Game: Patapon

Part Rhythm Game, part tactical war game, part Earworm, pure fun, Patapon is a game by Sony Computer Entertainment for the PlayStation Portable that has you as the deity of a tribe of eyeball villagers, the titular Patapons, waging war in their quest to reach Earthend and gaze upon IT.

The main gameplay of Patapon has you issuing orders to your army of 'Pons via four drums, each corresponding to a button in your joypad. There are plenty of commands, each with preset drum sequences, that you have to input in time with the rhythm to successfully issue an order (Advance, Attack, Defend, Run Away, among others). When you successfully enter your orders in in time with the rhythm, your army can then enter into a "Fever mode", greatly increasing their effectiveness in battle.

There are also other rhythm minigames back in your Patapon village that you can play to either acquire materials or currency (Kaching), used to upgrade your army.

It spawned two sequels, featuring more units, a Hero Unit, a multiplayer option, more minigames, and new enemies to conquer.

Patapon 3 has also been released, featuring RPG-like characteristics, online multiplayer (up to 4 players in co-op, to 8 in VS) and a Darker and Edgier storyline.

Provides examples of:

  • Addressing the Player: The Patapons worship you and call upon you for help: "Aid us, Oh Mighty [Troper]!"
  • A God Is You: But of course.
  • Always Chaotic Evil: Akumapons and Bonedeths.
  • Animate Inanimate Object:
    • The four drums
    • Signs throughout the levels.
    • Minigames have an animate furnace, baby mountain and a cooking pot.
      • And in the sequel, a giant bell and a... brewing machine of sorts... with a mustache.
    • Patapon 2 has one training mission where cannons will speak to you.
  • Annoying Laugh: "Keh heh heh heh!" That's kinda annoying sometimes.
  • Annoying Arrows: Yumipons arrows don't do a lot of damage on their own; they're made for for spreading status effects around the battlefield. It works in reverse, too; it's not uncommon for just two or three enemy Yumitons/mens/deths with fire or sleep bows to rain a nightmare on the squad from on top of a building until it's toppled. They are also still useful against bosses since the bosses pretty much take up half the battlefield, so almost all the arrows will hit them.
  • Anti-Magic: Slogturtle has this ability.
  • Arrows on Fire: Yumipons can end up with these with the right equipment.
  • A Taste of Power: When the player gets another unit type in Patapon 1 and 2, the first unit they get of that type is incredibly overpowered. It leaves when the stage is finished.
  • Back from the Brink: In all three games.
  • Badass Adorable: Patapons and many Zigotons. The Karmen and Bonedeth aren't really adorable on account of their masks, although Akumapons may still fit.
  • Bad Dreams: In some missions,your Uberhero sometimes experiences Bad Dreams about the past he can't remember.
    • The Dark Heroes Naughtyfins and Ravenous progressively recover memories. Their identity is revealed later to the player; The Patapon Princess as Naughtyfins and Gong the Hawkeye as Ravenous.
  • Bag of Spilling: Mostly.
    • In Patapon 2, the Almighty somehow forgets all the drum beats. In Patapon 3, however, all the old ones are available at the start.
    • In both sequels, the army you worked so hard to raise from the previous game is gone. Justified, brutally, in both cases: in Patapon 2, the army drowns when the kraken sinks the boat, but the Almighty replants Mater to grow new units from. In Patapon 3, the army was turned to stone.
  • Balance Between Good and Evil: At the end of Patapon 3, Silver Hoshipon tells the Patapons not to fear evil, because the world is better for having a balance.
  • Battle Theme Music: A weird variation: You're the beat, and the Patapons sing along with whatever they've been ordered to do. The melody changes with stages as well.
  • Beehive Barrier: Slogturtle from Patapon 3 can activate it when metaphysics need to be denied.
    • Pingreks, a defensive class in Patapon 3, can also create one of these around each ally by defending with certain staffs.
  • Canis Major: Both Fenrir and Ragewolf are very big lupines.
  • Big Eater: The Patapons; much ado is made about going hunting to feed them at the start of the first two games, and the second comes right out and says they need a ton of food.
    • Buzzcrave in the third game, justified as he is the Dark Hero of Gluttony. He even declares in a letter he'll wait for you while munching on a cyclops!
  • Bigger Is Better: Stronger weapons in Patapon 3 are at least twice as big as the characters who wield them.
    • BFS:
    • There are still some in the first two games, but those are subverted in that while they do a huge amount of damage, they slow the wielder down a lot.
    • Whenever the Uberhero holds a weapon in Patapon 3, it's at least twice as big compared to when a regular Patapon holds it. It gets even bigger when they enter Hero Mode.
  • Big Good: You, the player, assume the role.
  • Bizarre Alien Reproduction: You create new individuals for your army... by burying certain stuff under a tree? And to revive them, it works similarly, you have to bury their cap. AND they always come out as fully grown(?) adults...
    • The tree in question is a Tree of Life, of course. A Tree of Life named Mater no less, so there is, at least, a mater involved.
    • In several items, mentions are made to "babypons" and many patapon are referred as "he" or "she", hinting at a more "traditional" way of reproduction, ahem. But no actual children are ever shown.
    • Opposing tribes, namely the Zigotons and the Karmen, may or may not use this as well. The way they react to death though (and the many avengers you encounter through the game) hint that they may be more "traditional" in this sense.
    • Note that only soldiers and the minigame pons are created this way, and possibly only because this seems to be under the Patapon god's jurisdiction. Civilians probably have a more traditional way of reproducing.
  • The Blacksmith: Ton Kampon. Oddly, while being a Dekapon means he fits the standard "large and muscular" depiction, he doesn't do anything except work the (admittedly large) hammer; the anvil itself takes care of everything else.
  • Blow You Away: Gong and his tornado powers, as well as Ravenous in Patapon 3.
  • Boss Battle: you encounter Sand Worms, Giant Enemy Crabs, and around a dozen other behemoths.
  • Call a Hit Point a "Smeerp": Call money life force (Ka-Ching).
    • Used to justify why it drops from fallen enemies.
  • Call a Rabbit a Rappappa
    • Call a dragon a Dodonga. Patapon 3 justifies calling them dodongas, as less cartoonish real dragons are present in that game.
  • Catching Some Z's: Patapons under sleep effect.
  • Cats Are Mean: The Myamsar class in Patapon 3 specializes in high critical ratio along with nasty status effects such as poison. Leveling up their class skills makes them poison their attacker, have a 8x damage bonus against shield-based classes (which they are made to counter), and upon death, explode, sending poison everywhere. Their Set skills include things such as Cornered Rat which quadruples their attack when HP drops below 25% and Peerless Cat (in contraposition to other classes' Fearless <animal> abilities), which inflicts instant death when critting a poisoned enemy. And their Hero Mode, Sic'Em Shadow, makes them pounce on the closest enemy while releasing an angry meow, pin the foe to the ground rendering him/her/it vulnerable (and cutting their own hero mode), and start stabbing them. Repeatedly. And they don't. Let. Go. Playing this in VS is bound to get you called a dick.
  • Cartoon Conductor: Shuraba Yapon, who doesn't even have an orchestra.
  • Chain Reaction Destruction: One of the Patapon 3 missions ends with that after missiles flying all over the place.
  • Charged Attack: the Pon Pon Chaka Chaka Song activates this. Also, some bosses telegraph their attacks this way.
  • The Chosen One: Patapon Hero.
  • Clingy MacGuffin: The hero's mask may or may not be this.
  • Color-Coded Armies: Played straight in Patapon, everything on the Patapon side is white, everything on the Zigoton side is red.
    • Continues with Karmen using orange, Bonedeth using toxic green... And Akumapon using sickly purple along a gratuitous amount of Extra Eyes.
    • Also used in Patapon 3's multiplayer Versus games. One team is Blue, the other is Red.
  • The Comically Serious: Ragewolf in Patapon 3.
  • The Computer Shall Taunt You:
    Zigoton soldier: You slimy eyeballs!
    • An enemy in Patapon 3 holds a chest and will fly away if you don't kill him fast enough to get it, he'll laugh and taunt you while trying to get said chest. (He'll even show you what's inside it just to piss you off even more when he flies off with it!)
  • Cool Gate: Baban and its upgraded form Bababan, as well as the Paraget/Patagate (Patapon 2), the Herogate and the Battlegate (Patapon 3).
  • Cool Horse: Warhorses, elemental horses, divine horses, demonic horses... there are tons of options, just take your pick.
  • Cowardly Boss: most bosses back off after they've incurred significant damage.
  • Crapsack World: Patapon 3. You and your Five Patapon Band, plus Sukopon at the Hideout, are the last surviving members of your species from an apocalypse which you brought upon yourselves. Excluding Silver Hoshipon, everyone else has been turned to stone, is a demon or controlled by one, or is a massive, starving beast trying to devour you. Happy place indeed.
    • It is implied the other tribes are suffering/suffered as well. Sonarchy heavily implies once that the Karmen have gone extinct due to this, and does this while taking shelter in the very same bunker-like building you first saw Ormen Karmen perched/napping upon during Patapon 2 no less.
    • Minorly, also present during Patapon 1, but that has more to do with the fact Patapon are absolutely helpless at surviving on their own.
  • Credits Medley: Each game's credits has a medley of songs introduced in the game playing in the background.
  • Critical Hit
  • Cross-Dressing Voices: Most of the cast.
  • Crowning Music of Awesome: Patapon 3 specializes in EPIC SOUNDTRACK.
  • Cruelty Is the Only Option: Trust me, to advance to the end of the level, you're gonna have to kill everything in your path. And I mean everything.
    • "If you kill the mother without hurting the child, you'll get good quality fleece." - Patapon 2 loading screen tip
    • Makoton and Aiton.
    • Beetleton surrenders after inflicting enough damage on him. You still have to kill him. Scorpiton may also apply, after being left defenseless by Baban's death. You can't spare Gong either.
    • Several of the bosses seem quite passive and even docile... right up until you start attacking them.
  • Cue the Sun: The end of Patapon 1.
  • Damsel in Distress: Meden, later in the game.
    • The Patapon Princess was stuck inside an egg for who knows how long...
    • And in the third game, Meden is petrified right in the beginning.
  • Darker and Edgier: Patapon 3. Art and sound-wise. Dialogue is more humorous though.
    • The plot itself is Darker and Edgier, including the deaths of several important characters, and the fact the world is in its current Crapsack World status due to the Patapons' obsession with IT leading them to rediscover what should better have been left forgotten.
      • Ironically, this brings it back to Patapon 1's level after Patapon 2's Lighter and Softer storyline. The humorous dialogue part still remains, though.
  • Deal with the Devil: The Zigoton Queen sacrifices her bloodline to Gorl and the forces of the underworld so she can defeat the Patapons.
    • What each and every one of the Dark Heroes did to achieve that status. However, it's more like trickery on their respective Archfiend's part than actual deals, though.
  • Death Is Cheap: Patapon warriors (as long as they don't get eaten) and especially Patapon Hero.
    • Only for your own army, though... when you kill members of opposing tribes, whether you like them or not, they're gone. For good.
      • Except Gong the Hawkeye.
  • Defend Command: The Lament of Defense. Chaka chaka pata pon!
  • Dialog During Gameplay: The enemy tribes and Dark heroes sometimes do this instead of initiating a cutscene. Your Patapons also spout out random lines from time to time, but they don't do actual conversations.
  • Dinosaurs Are Dragons: Dodonga and its variants.
  • The Dragon: Gong the Hawkeye, commander of the Zigoton forces.
    • Each Archfiend keeps around a Dark Hero of their own as their personal Dragon, which works to prevent your Uberhero and his squad from reaching the dungeon they're kept in, aside following their orders.
  • Dramatic Wind: The cape from the Patapon 3 heroes always flows behind them. Even if they turn around. Even if there should be no wind at all.
  • Drop the Hammer: A preferred weapon type for Dekapons.
  • Dual Wielding: The fighting style of the Myamsar class.
    • The Destrobo and Bowmunk, along with their predecessor Robopon, could arguably count as this... that is, if you count using massive prosthethic metal hands to smash everything in your path dual wielding.
  • Easy Communication: Not giving out any commands or failing to complete an order sequence makes the Patapons stay still as sitting ducks, not making any effort to save themselves. No wonder the Zigotons were owning them at the start of the original Patapon.
    • Although, in the first, if not given an order, some types would still attack. They just do so very, very weakly and rarely.
  • Easy Exp: A variation of it, Patapon 3. Your Patapon earn levels through normal grinding, but the methods for upgrading your class skills, while some are quite combat-related, others are quite mind-baffling. Play enough VS? Have exp. Use charged attacks? Have exp. Attack structures? Have exp. Die a lot? Have exp. March forward a lot? Exp!
    • In general, you earn exp by using the skill. Certain skills, however, are earned simply through common or relevant actions, for example, Tondenga earns a skill that gives him extra skill sets just by generally completing missions with all set skill slots filled up (not, despite what the skill's description may imply, by randomly changing your set skills a lot).
    • However, some of the otherwise seemingly easy class skills... aren't. Many can take hours upon hours of play to master.
  • Easy Logistics: For some reason, Toripons, Yumipons, and Yaripons have infinite ammo. No Patapon of your army ever seems to get tired in the battlefield, even if you never see them eat, and in fact you never see them leave the obelisk.
  • Eccentric Mentor: Silver Hoshipon.
  • Everything's Better with Dinosaurs: Again, Dodonga and its variants.
  • Everything's Better with Spinning: The "Don Chaka like it's 1999!" dance. Also, the Hero does a lot of spinning in hero mode if he's a Robopon or a Dekapon.
    • Spin to Deflect Stuff: The Uberhero Wooyari's Hero mode has him spin his weapon very quickly to make a ring of fire or ice, which can deflect arrows.
  • Evil Counterpart: Patapon 2's Dark One is an Evil Knockoff of your own hero, down to changing classes when needed.
    • Patapon 3 turns this Up to Eleven with a whopping total of 7 Dark Heroes, all evil counterparts to your own Uberhero (as well as each opposing one of the already stablished Uberhero classes).
    • Black Hoshipon is an Evil Twin of the normal Hoshipon introduced in the first game. A usual gag is Hoshipon "confusing her/him with an impostor" whenever they meet.
  • Explaining Your Power to the Enemy: Played with in Patapon 3. Ragewolf taunts your Uberhero, informing him that heroes can't revive inside dungeons. Your hero drops to his knees in apparent defeat, but cheers himself up by pointing out aloud that in that case, Ragewolf probably can't revive in there either. Then Ragewolf laughs and gloats that he can revive there anyways, by usage of a Summon. Your hero then drops the act, thanks Ragewolf for the info, and ponders aloud how to learn to use a Summon.
Ragewolf: Erk! Curses!
  • Extra Eyes: Gate Ghoul Baban in Patapon 1 has several eyes. Its upgraded form Bababan from Patapon 2 has dozens of small eyes and a few large ones.
  • The Faceless: You never see the face of your enemies in the Karmen tribe, the Bonedeth, Dark Heroes, or even your own Hero unit.
  • Fake Balance: The original Patapon. Yumipons + Yaripons + Megapons. It's on walkthroughs, it's on forums. It can punch through anything.
    • If you're playing online in Patapon 3, expect other heroes to almost always be A) Grenburr (deals ridiculous amounts of damage) B) Cannasault (deals ridiculous amounts of damage) C) Cannogabang (deals ridiculous amounts of damage) D) Tondenga (though slow, deals great damage and has decent HP, and is one of the earliest classes unlocked). There's a surprising decent number of the two mage classes though, both the healer and the ranged attacker. But other classes such as Wooyari and Pyokorider are seldom seen.
    • The Rarepons from the two previous games were the rarity-based variant, purposefully done.
  • Fan Nickname: Patapons = Pons, Zigotons = Ziggies.
  • Fire, Ice, Lightning: Come Patapon 2, there are weapons and effects pertaining to all three.
  • Fission Mailed: In the first and second game. Unless you managed to get Sequence Breaking.
  • Five-Man Band: Patapon 3
  • Fog of Doom: Presented both as normal fog and as dust storm, it prevents you from seeing any enemies coming at you until they're right at your feet. Can be dissipated through rain, though you can also counter it by being Genre Savvy enough to check the expression of your long-range units...however, this still won't allow you too see exactly what is coming to get you, so Oh Crap moments may ensue.
  • Forged by the Gods: Divine weapons. Well, you "don't" actually forge these yourself, it's more like you "help" the blacksmith forge them...
  • Forging Scene: Ton Kampon and Fwoosh Famooze's minigame.
  • Frickin' Laser Beams: Some of the bosses shoot these from their mouths. In Patapon 3, players can get the lasergun too.
  • From Nobody to Nightmare: Makoton, a normal soldier, once you killed his best friend. He turns into a general, then he turned into the demonic, evil, and hard Dark One.
  • Fungus Humongous: Sentient demonic mushroom Matango.
  • Fusion Dance: At the beginning of Patapon 3, The Almighty fuses with the Patapon Hero, creating the Uberhero.
  • Game Lobby: Patapon 3's multiplayer/VS matches.
  • Garnishing the Story: Everything's Better With Cows/Everything's Better with Monkeys/Everything's Better with Penguins/Cute Kitten/Messy Pig/Precious Puppies/Frogs and Toads/long etc.The list of rarepons in Patapon 2 is pretty large, with examples pertaining to almost every classic animal/creature stereotype. You can even make angels and dragons!
  • Genre Savvy: Meden is normally a bit of an airhead, but she has this surprisingly accurate brainwave in the second game;
    Meden's Aide: Lady Meden! It's terrible!
    Meden: *Sigh* What is it this time? A giant mushroom, or something?
    Meden's Aide: Er... how did you know?
  • Getting Crap Past the Radar: Naughtyfins. Always.
    Naughtyfins: First I'll strap you down and... no... I'll freeze you till you squeal and... no... I'll knock you out cold, darling!♥
    • And she says that while poledancing, no less...
      • And some levels ahead, there's a cutscene at the entrance of your hideout... let's just say that Silver Hoshipon has had a certain Dark Hero in mind lately...
    Kan: Look who's feeling naughty now!
    • In Patapon 2, an item description for the Bishiri mask calls it the "Hero Mask of the Bollock Shot! Strike for maximum damage." Bollocks is an outright swear in Great Britain.
  • Giant Enemy Crab: Present as bosses or larger enemies in hunting missions.
  • Giant Spider: Centura and Darantula.
  • Glass Cannon: Several classes. One example are the Megapons, which pack quite a punch, but are defeated in a handful of hits. And the Oohoroc from Patapon 3 are able to nuke everything onscreen with one of the super-unique staffs, yet they are prone to die if there are no other heroes/patapons in front to shield him/her from damage.
  • Green Hill Zone: The first "serious" level of the first two games is always a hunting stage, with a blue background, lush green plants, kaching-giving flowers, and light-hearted songs; Patata Plains in 1 and Tochira Beach in 2.
    • In Patapon 3, it's no longer a hunting stage, instead being a series of tutorial levels. Still, the Training Grounds DO look a lot like Patata Plains.
  • Green Thumb: Fah Zakpon and, to a lesser extent, Pan Pakapon.
    • In Patapon 3, Bowmunk
  • Grey and Gray Morality: Patapon 1. The first half of the game is very straightforward about who are the bad guys, with the Patapon tribe oppressed by the Zigotons to near extinction. The flipside, however, is that pretty much everyone who's not a Patapon is absolutely convinced that the world will end if the Patapons reach Earthend and see IT.
  • Golden Snitch: The team that manages to take the flag of the opposition automatically wins the match in Arena versus games (Patapon 3), regardless of points scored. Then again, to fetch said flag, you have to destroy all of your enemies's fortifications first, so you ought to have been winning anyways.
  • Gold Makes Everything Shiny: Divine weapons posses gold-colored markings instead of white.
  • Guide Dang It: The desert level requires you to use a rain juju to be able to get through. By this point, you'll probably have forgotten about the strange totem you saw back at the first hunting stage, which only now you can attempt to copy the sequence from now that you got the Chaka drum. No one mentions explicitly you must summon rain yourself either.
    • And then we have the level "Search for a Lucky Star". Oh my god. First off, despite what people might say, you do NOT have to sacrifice one of your own Patapons to get it to stop raining; it happens randomly, and scarcely. Once you rescue Hoshipon from the Pincheek, you must keep still. March too far ahead, and he will get mad and promptly leave without giving you anything, and no one warns you about it except he himself saying "Hey hey, are you listening to me?" earlier. Oh, and doing this is the only way to obtain the McGuffin needed to unlock the Giant Enemy Crab boss and continue the story. Headdesks ensue.
    • In Patapon 3, not all versions of the manual state where you can find the Pause command... which leads to several people completing the game without the ability to pause.
  • Hard Levels, Easy Bosses: In Patapon 3, tower and dungeon bosses go down really fast compared to what is faced before that.
  • Have You Seen My God?: The standard start of the games; with the few remaining Patapon trying desesperately to get you back.
  • Healing Potion: Sometimes these are dropped.
  • Heel-Face Turn: In each Sequel Hook, the Patapons are seen working with their enemy tribe to achieve whatever next challenge they'll be facing. Played with in the second game; Gong just wants his honor from beating you, but realizes about halfway through that the Karmens are a bigger issue.
  • Hello, Insert Name Here
  • Hero Antagonist: The Zigoton species as a whole once you progress enough in the original game, when they switch from fighting you to push you back into their domination, into fighting you to prevent the freakin' world from being destroyed! (Which is what their legends state will happen if you reach IT). But specially General Gong: he cares for his troops (and his troops adore him back), remains loyal to his queen until the death, and sacrifices himself in a last stand to defend his species' honor, which are about to be all turned into demons so the Patapon are stopped once and for all.
  • Hero Unit: introduced in the sequel. Upgraded into the Uberhero for the third game.
  • Hit Points
  • Hotter and Sexier: Naughtyfins. She even pole dances in front of the Uberhero when they first meet.
  • Hyperactive Sprite: Your army in the first two games, everywhere from missions to the obelisk/barracks, except during cutscenes. Applies to the enemy tribes as well; it seems like everyone has some sort of disease that prevents them from stopping. Averted in Patapon 3, though.
  • Hypercompetent Sidekick: Meden's unnamed assistant seems fairly more capable than she is.
  • I Have the High Ground: Gong likes this trope. A lot.
    • Several Dark Heroes as well, Sonarchy and Ragewolf being the main offenders.
  • I Know Your True Name: After you name the Hero Patapon in Patapon 2, the Hero says that he has to serve you because you named him. Also, right before you name him, he declares all of you are insane in the membrane.
  • Impossible Item Drop: While the kaching, the currency, may be justified as it is sort of representation of life force, things like enemies dropping potions and rocks may be not.
    • The Patapon 3 website justified it on the Bonedeth's part by stating that they bring these potions to battle on purpose, they just forget to drink them.
      • ... as this strip points up.
  • In a Single Bound: Several characters through the series. Dark Heroes are, again, the main offenders. Curiously, no Patapon character is seen doing this, just enemy characters.
  • Inexplicable Treasure Chests: For some strange reason, the enemies and sometimes other things carry treasure chests with them in Patapon 3.
  • Informed Equipment: A rare voluntary variation of it. Since most helms don't look quite well on Uberheroes, they don't show on your character by default. However, you can choose to always show them in the options menu.
  • Insurmountable Waist-Height Fence: A variation of it. Toripons fly high when in Fever mode, often not having to move at all to avoid being hit by enemy units or the Boss Battle ...but for some reason, high above the ground as they may be, they cannot fly past any obstacle (including the very low wooden fences or enemy units).
  • Impassable Desert: Better get the rain juju.
  • Impossibly Cool Weapon: In Patapon 3, the weapons that can be carried get extremely large at the end.
  • It's the Journey That Counts: At the end of Patapon 3 the Patapons do find Earthend, but the journey was more important, bringing hope back to the world.
  • Last Ditch Move: Salamanders from Patapon 3 go out with a bang of their respective element. This actually causes a lot of damage should your 'pons be caught in the blast, so it's better to take them out from a distance.
    • There's a heroic example of this as well; by dying repeatedly, you can teach your Myamsar to go out with a bang of poison.
  • The Legions of Hell: Akumapons and Bonedeths again.
  • Level Grinding: Has to be done in Patapon 3. Surprisingly, one of the most efficient ways to gain experience is to kill grass.
  • Lightning Bruiser: With the right combination, your hero can become this. For example, a pyokola dekapon with Rabasarana.
    • One of the masks turns your character into one of these by granting both damage and speed, but also gives him a slight case of Glass Cannon.
  • Linear Warriors, Quadratic Wizards: From the second game, we get Mahopons, who are weak at first look until you get the later game spells: lighting, which hits everything 3 times (more so if it's a large target), blizzard, which spams ice, and fireblast, which is your own little nuke. Of course, the hero chaincasts meteor. That doesn't even cover the support abilities.
  • Locked Door: Every single dungeon in P3.
  • MacGuffin: IT is the main motivation of the Patapons on their journey to Earthend. What IT is, though, is unknown to anyone.
  • Mama Bear (or Papa Wolf): Pekkora are cute, fluffy, sheep-like creatures that inhabit the snowy levels of Patapon 2. Usually, they have a Gentle Giant demeanor; they will refuse to attack their offenders, and will simply try to run away at a slow pace along with their little Pekkorako. But, kill any of their children, even a single one, and they will turn into a terrifying monster with massive maws, in a Roaring Rampage of Revenge... right at your army.
  • Man-Eating Plant: Two of the bosses, Shookle and Shooshookle.
  • Man on Fire: Unless you invested time and ka-ching in upgrading your troops' resistance to fire in later levels, expect your patapons to constantly run back and forth through the screen in a frenzy, their asses ablaze and losing health as they disobey your commands and unwittingly get in the way of enemy attacks.
  • Mask Power: And how! The Hero from the second game is powered up through masks and with the right combination, he can become a Game Breaker.
  • Meaningful Name: The series is filled with them.
    • Earthend, as, if the Zigotons and Karmen are to be believed, the Earth will end if the Patapons find it.
      • The result: They're wrong, and Earthend has an altogether different but still literal meaning; it's where the Earth comes to an end, beyond which is an expanse of... something.
    • The syllabes that precede the "pon" of the class names aren't elected randomly. Yari means spear in japanese, while Tate means shield and Yumi means bow. Hata means flag. Kiba is the act of riding something. Dekai means enormous. Tori means bird while Maho means magic. The exceptions are the Robopon and Megapon; the former derives its prefix from robot while the latter is a pun on megaphone.
    • Mater means mother in Latin.
    • Gong means leader in Japanese. Cue General Gong the Hawkeye.
    • The Dark Heroes' names; Standoffish Sonarchy (bat-like Dark hero of Pride), Miss Covet Hiss (snake-like Dark Hero of Jealousy), Ragewolf (...wolf-like Dark Hero of Rage...). People, let's just back off... veeeeeery slowly...
  • Mega Neko: The Myamsar share body type with the Tondenga; they look like dekapons from the two prequels. Which makes little to no sense, as Myamsar have a ninja-like combat style, low on HP and dealing little damage but able to strike very quickly, while dekapons are... well...see below.
  • Mighty Glacier: Dekapons are slow to move and attack, but pack a punch everytime they hit.
  • Mook Promotion: Makoton, a regular Zigoton warrior, gradually becomes a formidable adversary later on.
  • Motifs
    • Everything vaguely on the Patapon's side/made by Patapons tends to have the symbol of a Patapon eyeball somewhere in their design, sometimes with a smile under it as in a megapon's face.
    • List of things with the eyeball symbol:
      • Mater
      • The Obelisk
      • The Altar
      • Paraget
      • Trees
      • Weapons
      • Pillars
      • The pole that marks the end of levels.
      • The spirits that act as background during a miracle and final dance at Paraget.
      • The altar that holds the egg during the final dance at Paraget.
      • Zigotons use red rounded squares as their symbol instead, but it's less prominent than Patapons's.
    • Patapon 2 also has a tribal mask motif throughout the game. The Karmen are a tribe of masked people; Dark One is being powered and controlled by a mask; your own hero lost his memories and is powered up through masks of varying power, and even the last boss is a flying giant mask which spawns a body, then mutates. Even Gong the Hawkeye, of all people, uses a mask to conceal his identity when you first encounter him before immediately throwing it away.
  • Multiple Endings: Patapon 3 has more than one ending.
  • Mundane Made Awesome: Triggering either Fever mode or one of your miracles.
  • Musical Assassin: The Megapon units shoot sound wave projectiles out of tubas.
  • Musical Gameplay
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: Literally. Your Hero unit is the lone Patapon who broke the magical egg at the world's core and caused the downfall of the Patapon empire.
  • Nintendo Hard: If you don't know what you're doing.
  • No Body Left Behind: Patapons and the opposing tribes melt into puddles when killed; however, it seems to be just the way their body works, as defeated Uberheroes melt as well but DO leave their mask behind. Averted with bosses. Played straight with Patapon 3's mini-bosses such as Treants and Cyclops, which just dissapear into nothingness.
  • No Cutscene Inventory Inertia: Patapon 2. In the few cutscenes of the game, your hero unit always appears as a normal lvl1 yaripon with Shuba mask, no matter what class, level, rarepon, and mask you have him as.
    • Averted in Patapon 3, however. The cutscenes do have your hero units in their equipped attire.
    • In every game so far, at the very end, there's a part where three patapons (Ton, Chin, and Kan) walk along with Hatapon towards what they believe to be Earthend. In the first two games, these are three normal yaripons (spearmen) with normal spears, no matter what. In the third, the three normal heroes appear as their respective starter classes, each with their normal starter equipment.
  • Nostalgia Level: The final duel against Ravenous features the original, unremixed version of Gong's theme as the song. He even says the same thing upon death!
  • One-Hit Polykill: Several late-game ranged weapons (bows, the megapon's red notes) have got "pierce factors" and can go through several enemies and through structures. In the case of the megapons, these red notes are so strong that they can literally become one hit polykills.
  • Only Sane Man: In Patapon 3, your hero seems pretty well aware about the insanity going around and often lampshades events and characters in his dialogue, even without the player's choice input. Within the different sides, Ragewolf does this to the other Dark Heroes, and Silver Hoshipon and Hatapon to the rest of the Patapons.
  • Pass Through the Rings: Patapon 2 and 3's obstacle courses. Only by getting past the signs will you earn the needed time to get to the end. Specially frustrating in Patapon 3 as this is the only way to obtain the Pause song, and to reach it you're going to have to literally wipe out every single obstacle in range with your every attack command to make it to the end in time.
  • Physical God: The series is notable for averting this, as you, the Almighty Patapon, are unable to interact with your tribe in any other way that isn't drumming a command to them in time (except Meden, whose job as a priestess is to be able to talk to you) and must be content instead by watching them from the skies. However, there's the Uberhero in Patapon 3... Though he's actually a hybrid of you and your P2 hero, so he's more like a demigod.
    • One of the missions in Patapon 2 has you save the Zigotons' massive, anthrophomorphic, priest-robed Physical God, which the Akumapons (demons) are keeping captured and chained up inside its home above the clouds. Even General Gong the Hawkeye, of all people, shows up to help. It is an awesome level.
  • Plant Person: Ubo Bon and Pop Bean.
    • Menyokki rarepon (Called Bowmunk in Patapon 3)
  • Player Headquarters: Patapolis.
  • Player Tic: Who knew this could happen in a rhytmn game?
    • As soon as one team-mate gets behind the finish pole, everyone in the party beats the mission.
      • Basically, Pata Pon Don Chaka whenever you want to celebrate or are waiting for something.
    • Certain people (especially in P1 and P2, with the absence/charging time of Hero Mode) can't refrain from charging with Pon Chaka every single time they prepare to attack. Regardless of wether the enemy actually needs a charged attack to be defeated or not.
    • During mission cutscenes that don't immediately break your Fever, expect the command you issue while waiting to invariably become Pata Pata Pata Pon, specially if you're not paying attention to what you drum up. And more especially if your army appears onscreen, as if you expected it to magically start moving again.
      • Or maybe because it's the simplest command in-game.
    • Non-mission example; In Patapon 3 not so much, but optimizing your squads in P1 and P2 right before deploying, even if you don't have any new weapons, feels so... relaxing.
  • Power Equals Rarity
  • Power Gives You Wings: The Patapon 3 intro demo... sort of. Hero gets wings indeed, but... on his head.
    • The Barsala (wings on head) rarepon is the best obtainable rarepon of the original game, and is one of the three ultimate rarepons of Patapon 2. Barsala Hero has been the series' mascot from Patapon 2 onwards, and he even forms part of the Patapon 3 logo. So it's definitely not far off.
  • Pressure Plate: Some dungeons in Patapon 3 have these.
  • Proud Warrior Race Guy: General Gong and most Zigotons.
  • Rainbow Speak: Whenever your name or the name of your hero/Uberhero shows up in dialogue, they tend to be highlighted in a different color. Also applies to weapons upgraded at the Blacksmith in Patapon 3 if the player chose to name them, but only when seeing your Patapons' equipment in the Barracks/Obelisk.
    • If playing online, any quips your Uberhero says that you wrote manually have a different color too.
  • Random Event: Patapon 3. Sometimes (very scarcely) a special boss will appear, a very strong one. Chances are you are going to need multiplayer help to take them down if you don't want to be pummeled, though you may attempt them solo if you grinded enough. You'll be notified when this happens by Sukopon.
    • Kacchidonga in Patapon 2.
  • Really 700 Years Old: The Karmen leader, Ormen Karmen, is said to be — well, over seven hundred years old. And then Meden says that's not older than she is. Hmm. Many characters in Patapon 3 too.
  • Red Sky, Take Warning: Whenever you come into a level with a red sky... you better be ready to deal with major akumapon/demon ass...
    • Averted by Gorl, the final boss of the original Patapon. The sky is just a really bright white. Of course, this doens't really help things when you notice the sickly reddish tones of the landscape, and the fact the sun/moon is black.
  • The Reveal: Downplayed; when the Patapons finally reach Earthend, they don't seem to realize that Silver Hoshipon is IT.
  • RPG Elements: The squad levels up in Patapon 3.
  • Schizo Tech: In first two Patapon games, the army uses things like spears, bows, swords, clubs, magic, and so on. However, in Patapon 3, cannons and laserguns are added to the mix. In addition, there is a minigame about launching tactical missiles into the opponents' side of the area.
    • Robopons are described as "the latest in Patapon technology."
  • Strike Me Down: Beetleton; after a long battle, he surrendered like a man!
  • Sealed Evil in a Can: Seven Spirits in Patapon 3.
  • Sealed Good in a Can: Both the Patapon Princess and the magical center of the world were contained in eggs. Breaking the latter proved disastrous, however. Also, Silver Hoshipon.
  • Sequel Hook
  • Seven Deadly Sins: Each of the 7 dark heroes and their Archfiends in Patapon 3 represents one sin.
  • Shows Damage: Most structures. Also, injured units stare differently.
  • Siege Engines: Both Patapon 1 and 2 posses levels featuring capturing/guarding a catapult.
    • In Patapon 3, the Charibassa, Cannasault, and Cannogabang are whole classes specializing in this.
  • Sinister Scythe: It's Gong's weapon of choice. In Patapon 3, one of the large monsters wields a scythe too.
  • Smashing Survival: A gimmick of the Fenrir in Patapon 3. They will crouch down, and after a command's worth of time, will lunge at your Patapons. Get caught, and you will be prompted to Button Mash to escape their fangs. If you fail to do so, insta-kill.
  • Smash Mook - Dekapons (and its analogues). Giants in Patapon 3.
  • Soundtrack Dissonance:
    • One of the early levels in Patapon 3 takes place in an area with lots of birch trees. Arabian-style fever theme plays there.
    • When attacking a heavily fortified oasis in Patapon 3, a jolly circus music fever theme plays.
  • Speaking Simlish: The Patapons speak vague-sounding Japanese but otherwise only sing the names of the drums. (Pon, Pata, Chaka, and Don.)
  • Spoony Bard: Averted. Megapons are your bard class, but they also double as terrifyingly effective long-range artillery units. Of course, what were you expecting from a game based around the Power of Rock...?
  • Squishy Wizard: Mahapons are pretty low on hitpoints.
  • Stupidity Is the Only Option: Patapon 1 and 2,you must lose on a mission.Meden will ask you to get a catapult.
  • Status Buff Dispel: The PATA! PON! DON! CHAKA! command.
  • Stock Femur Bone: Most collectible bones are these.
  • Stone Wall:
    • Hatapon. He cannot attack but he has a lot of health. Changed up a bit in the third game; he has much less health and can die in a handful of hits, but he's invincible as long as there's a shield class alive in the squad.
    • The Guardira class in Patapon 3. Its attack isn't exactly high, but its Hero Mode puts up a massive shield that protects the whole party, while taking only 10% the damage it would receive normally from enemy attacks.
  • Super Mode: FEVEEEEER!!!!!!!!!! in the whole series. A stronger mode is hero mode from Patapon 2 and 3.
  • Suspiciously Small Army: Patapon army is very small after all.
  • Swiss Army Hero: Pretty much the whole point of the hero unit. Specially in Patapon 2, where besides being able to change into any rarepons and classes you have already unlocked, you can choose between different 'masks' to emphasize some combat style over another.
  • Taken for Granite: Hatapon is the only one not suffering from this at the beginning of the third game.
  • Tech Tree: Introduced in the sequel, basically an Evolution tree for Rarepons/classes.
  • Team Chef: Rah Gashapon.
  • Telephone Polearm: One of the weapons that can be carried in Patapon 3 is a club 4 times longer than uberhero's height.
  • The Tetris Effect: 'Pon Pon Pata Pon' and 'Pata Pata Pata Pon' gets stuck in your head a long time after you've stopped.
  • This Cannot Be!: "Impossible... Bababaan is weakening... it can't be... it... I can't let it happen".
  • Timed Mission: The obstacle course training levels in Patapon 2 and 3 have you try to reach the end before the timer runs out. Reaching it is, in fact, the only way to obtain the pause song in Patapon 3.
    • The second floor of Estate of Earnestness has you doing this. Fail to reach the end in time and you won't obtain the key needed to open the gate and get to the boss.
  • Title Drop: And how! Its TDPM (title drop per minute) is rather high when playing this game.
  • Trauma-Induced Amnesia: The Hero Unit lost his memory after he destroyed the world egg. The five survivors from the disaster that starts the first game can't remember anything before it, either.
  • Turns Red: In Patapon 3, when you reduce a boss's health down to half, they will not have a preparation time before their attacks and instead attack immediately.
  • Unexplained Recovery: Gong returns from the dead in Patapon 2. Exactly how is never stated, but perhaps defeating Gorl returned the Zigotons to what they once were?
  • Vendor Trash: While still very useful if leveled up, common weapons and armor end up becoming this once you get high leveled enough Unique Equipment.
  • Verbal Tic: Silver Hoshipon likes to end sentences with "Shzamm".
    • Karmen tend to end their phrases with their species's name or the last three words of it.
    • Bonedeth seem to repeat their species's name a little too much as well.
  • Visible Silence: In Patapon 3, these happen a lot and often with more than three "."s.
  • Videogame Caring Potential: "Come on... all make it out to the exit... no! NO FOR THE LOVE OF GOD, DON'T EAT THAT ONE!"
    • Many a troper attempted feats such as sparing Beetleton (when he stops and tells you to finish him off near the end of Patapon 1) or trying to save the Zigotons from the flames through the Rain juju (Patapon 2)
  • Videogame Cruelty Potential: Surprisingly averted; you are going to need all your army to beat this game.
    • The dying noise of the Karmen is pretty amusing...
      • kaaaAAAAAArmeen...
    • Bring fire weapons to the rescue mission. Put your mind on Dirty Mode. Now listen to Meden's dialogue again while she's burnt to a crisp. Enjoy.
    • They do this in all three of the games actually, mostly directed at Meden.
  • Voice Grunting: In first two games, Meden likes to say "Papaya!" when her dialogue box appears.
  • Waif Prophet: Meden.
  • Walking Head: The Patapons and the tribes opposing them.Heck,they're EYES on stick legs!
  • War Has Never Been So Much Fun: Brightly colored backgrounds, absolutely adorable critters as your army and your enemies, defeated units melt into the ground instead of collapsing in pools of gore. The Patapons's ultimate goal is to reach Earthend. Aww, look at the cute little eyeballs with swords and spears go at it!
  • When It Rains, It Pours: In the first two games. Patapon 3 has a "light" rain too.
  • When Trees Attack: Patapon 3 introduces a tree-like enemy.
  • Who Dares?:
    Ragewolf: You rotten little spherical scoundrels! How dare you!
    • Several enemies through the whole game series as well.
  • Widget Series
  • With Catlike Tread: Opposing tribes (specially in earlier levels) often attempt to ambush you...with varying results...
    Zigoton in the tall grass: *in a big, white speech bubble that makes a stark contrast against the background* Uh... How long do we have to hide?
    Another zigoton in the tall grass: *in the same stark white bubbles* Shh! There they are!
    • Even when they don't speak, they always end up with half their bodies showing or their weapons popping up over the grass. Really stealthy, guys.
  • The Worm That Walks: Arch Pandara seems to be made of bats in that:
    • they come flying out of the open vessel along with Arch Pandara.
    • when you stagger him/her/it in skeleton form, bats come flying out of its back and then fly back in.
    • after it finishes summoning a giant worm, bats can be seen flying from the worm and into Arch Pandara's arm.
    • when it shapeshifts between its two main forms, it first morphs into a giant red eye with bats flying around it, which then comes together.
    • when you kill it, it morphs back into its shapeshifting form, but the bats that usually fly around it die and fall to the ground.
  • Worthy Opponent: General Gong is later honored to fight the player.
  • You Shouldn't Know This Already: You can't learn new drumbeats until you unlock the relevant "drum" by finding it in the stage it's hidden in.
  • Yellow Lightning, Blue Lightning: Cartoonish lightning to accompany the storms is the way to go.
  • You Bastard: The huntable Pekkora in Patapon 2. The tips not only mention that killing the Pekkora without killing it's children gets you a better quality fur, it actually encourages you to do it. Then you actually do it, and are immediately rewarded with the sight of the little Pekkorako crying over the limp body of their mother in the background.
    • Patapon 1 is filled with this from the desert stage and on until almost the very end.

Loco RocoCreator/SCE Japan StudioPuppeteer
PaRappa the RapperRhythm Gamepop'n music
Para WorldReal-Time StrategyPatchCon
PaRappa the RapperPlay Station PortablePhantasy Star Universe

alternative title(s): Patapon
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