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Publisher: Bandai Namco Games
Taiko no Tatsujin: Drum Session! (PS4)Developer: Bandai NamcoPublisher: Bandai NamcoReleased: November 2, 2018MSRP: $49.99 (No Drum)Taiko no Tatsujin: Drum Session, is the second of two Taiko games that launched last week, alongside Nintendo Switch release Taiko no Tatsujin: Drum 'n' Fun. But whereas the latter's focus is on mini-games and party modes, Drum Session's PS4 release is more focused on the core Taiko no Tatsujin experience.Drum Session's rhythm-action gameplay is very straightforward. You bash along, on your drum controller or PS4 pad, in time to symbols that appear on a fast-moving on-screen track, ala Rock Band, Guitar Hero or any number of previous similar titles. The red symbols represent hitting the skin, the blue symbols require a tap on the rim. The larger symbols mean you strike with both sticks together, while extended yellow bars require players to hammer out a thunderous drum roll.Players score points for perfect timing, as well as for not dropping a beat, with extended combos making for major league scores. There is a large variety of songs to choose from, ranging in difficulty, and you can compete against a friend or against other player's "ghosts" online.
The decision not to release the drum controller in the West is a baffling one, as it robs Taiko No Tatsujin: Drum Session of its identity. However, if you're willing to give it a shot with a regular pad, there's a challenging rhythm game here for you to master, with a wide variety of tracks and seamless online play. The lack of extra modes is a shame, but if you get hooked on this game's unique brand of beat-matching gameplay, the climb towards better scores should keep you going for a good while.
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Taiko no Tatsujin: Drum Session! & Drum 'n' Fun! - Announcement Trailer | PS4, Switch