Seemingly scary but actually not scary horror game PAON-ぱおん- BEYOND THE PIEN is now available

Publication date of the original Japanese article: 2021-06-20 15:08 (JST)
Translated by. Nick Mosier

A developer that goes by the name Tadasumen launched PAON-ぱおん– BEYOND THE PIEN as a free game on June 18 for PC (Windows) with a download link on their personal website,

If you aren’t familiar with recent Japanese buzzwords and slang, the title might not make a whole lot of sense. “Pien” is a mimetic word for when you’re a little sad and maybe have tears welling up in your eyes. “Paon” is similar but is a level of sadness that exceeds a simple “pien”. Fun fact! it’s also the sound elephants make in Japanese.

PAON-ぱおん– BEYOND THE PIEN is the second part of another 3D horror game developed by Tadasumen called PIEN-ぴえんwhere the characters take sadness to the next level by going beyond “pien” to a “paon” motif.

The setting of the game is the Buzzword JP300-310 research facility. Something strange happens while the main character is visiting the facility and they have to face off against a pien-faced muscle man called Paon to stay alive.

Within the facility are hidden pien and paon symbols. The player runs around the facility searching for these symbols while running away from the Paon. When you shine your flashlight on the symbols, they’ll let out a sad cry and disappear. The objective of the game is to get rid of all the symbols.

The game basically follows a horror game format. The sense of fear is palpable in the dark research facility. It’s also instant death if you’re caught by the Paon which adds to the fear. This isn’t your average horror game though. Things like the happy tune with vocals that plays when the Paon is chasing you create an atmosphere of absurdity.

Like the previous title PIEN-ぴえん-,  the game seems scary but actually isn’t and paints a different experience than other horror games. Plus the total play-time is around 30 minutes. According to a tweet by Tadasumen, an extra mode with infinitely spawning Pien can be unlocked by pressing the K key 6 times, the S key 6 times, and the O key 1 time on the title screen.

Tadasumen’s title can be found on their website along with other games like Nagashi Macho Men, another play on words with “men” meaning “noodle’ in Japanese, and Hero VS Dumb Replies where the hero has to fight the internet.

PAON-ぱおん– BEYOND THE PIENis available now for free.