Parents' Guide to

Taiko no Tatsujin: Drum Session!

By David Chapman, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 10+

Move to the (repetitive) beat and leave the drum behind.

Game PlayStation 4 2018
Taiko no Tatsujin: Drum Session! Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this game.

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Kids say (2 ):

Although this new installment in the popular drum franchise has lots of content, the gameplay feels a bit too repetitive to appeal to anyone but large drum fans. Taiko no Tatsujin: Drum Session! is the latest game in the franchise to bring the beat out of the arcades and into the home on the PlayStation 4, though with one glaring omission: a drum. Other games in the franchise either made use of touchscreen and motion controls or had the option of picking up a dedicated drum controller as part of a bundle. This time around, there's no bundled (official) drum controller, meaning that fans are forced to use a combo of button and pad controls on the DualShock 4 to get their groove on. While there's a bit of a learning curve, the controls do actually work well. The problem is that it feels more like you're literally just going through the motions of a run-of-the-mill rhythm game versus banging out beats on a drum.

Despite this disconnect, as a rhythm-based game, there's a surprising amount of content. The selection of songs is a dream to fans of anime and J-pop music, with songs pulled from a variety of different anime series. They even managed to sneak in a Japanese version of "Let It Go" from Disney's Frozen. It's an odd mix of songs that covers a wide range of styles and speeds to play. Each song has its own set of challenges, presented as a sort of tic-tac-toe game card, where completing a line earns you coins to unlock cosmetic customizations for your Don-chan mascot in the game. Online play is a nice addition too, though you're never playing against people in real time. Instead, you play against ghost data other players have uploaded. But at least you never need to wait for someone to be matched up with you, or deal with any potential toxicity from a sore loser (or winner). Still, while there's a lot of content in Taiko no Tatsujin: Drum Session!, it's hard to ignore the repetition that comes with tapping out the same buttons the same way throughout the game.

Game Details

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