Recently, I’ve been all sorts of obsessed about Taiko. It all started when I first saw Tamagawa University’s Taiko group perform at Haverford College…but that is another story for another time. Today I’ll be blogging about Taiko No Tatsujin, an intersection between two of my interests! – Taiko and videogames!
Haven’t heard about it? I’m not too surprised. Taiko No Tatsujin has only had one release outside of Japan – the North American PlayStation 2 game, “Taiko: Drum Master”. In Japan, the series has had releases for the DS, PSP, Wii, and many other consoles. Perhaps the most interesting of all these games – at least, to me – are the arcade games. Although Taiko No Tatsujin only has Japanese releases, the arcade games have been imported to many other Asian countries, including China, Korea, and Taiwan.
Taiwan was the place where I saw my very first Taiko No Tatsujin arcade machine. It was just after when all of my friends and I had gotten into our DDR phases, even forming a DDR club for our high school. Looking back on it now, it was really fun, but it didn’t help much, as we’re all still not that good.
Anyways, back on track. The little drums were really cute, and it was only a few yuan per play! The cute little drums beckoned, and I willingly surrendered 10 yuan to try out the game.
Little circles representing beats move down the screen in a very DDR-esque fashion – only horizontally instead of vertically – and once they hit a line, you must hit the drums. Big circles require a simultaneous hit from both hands, and small circles only need one. Blue represents hitting the rim of the drum, and red represents the center of the drum.
If you ever see one of these arcade machines, I highly suggest you try it out, just for the experience. It’s not too expensive to play, and it’s a lot of fun. However, make sure you don’t pick a song that’s too hard!