Pentaro (ペン太郎, ペンタロウ Pentarō ) is a video game character created by Konami, originally appearing in 1990 in the game Parodius Da! ~Shinwa kara Owarai e~. A male penguin, he is the son of the penguin referred to as just "Penguin" (ペンギン Pengin ), later named Penta (ペン太) who originally appeared in 1983 in Antarctic Adventure, but subsequently became the protagonist of Penguin Adventure and Yume Penguin Monogatari ("Penguin Dream Story"), and a playable character in Parodius for the MSX.
Pentaro's name is a portmanteau of "penguin" and "tarō", which is a very common boys' name often used in Japanese folk tales.
Pentaro has made most of his appearances in the Parodius series of games, where he was a selectable character in every title from Parodius Da! ~Shinwa kara Owarai e~ onward, with the exception of Sexy Parodius. In that title, he plays the role of a boss at the mercenary company where all the Parodius characters are employed. He handles the negotiations and gives out the assignments to the other characters. He works in an office, specifically at a desk that he can barely see across, where he utilizes a typewriter constantly. As Pentaro cannot fight himself in this game, he hires Ivan and Toby, two penguin commandos, to take his place.
Pentaro's feathers are always blue. Later on, as pictured in the cartoon drawings of the Parodius games, he wears a flak jacket and wields a carbine. It's possible that he picked up the shooting skills learned by his father during the course of events in Penguin Adventure, as one of the most facilitating items during the course of the game is a gun.
Pentaro acquired a mate in the Parodius series; a female penguin named Hanako (which means "little flower"). Hanako is a common Japanese girl's name. She's similarly colored as Penko (Pentaro's mother), although her feathers are closer to magenta than pink, and in some games appear orange. It's unknown if Pentaro has any children, although one could conjecture that the Options he uses in the Parodius games, pictured as small penguins, are in fact his offspring.
- 1990 – Parodius Da! ~Shinwa kara Owarai e~ (arcade, MSX, Super Famicom, Game Boy, PC Engine, mobile phones) – One of the selectable characters.
- 1992 – Imo Hori Penta
- 1993 – Balloon Penta
- 1994 – Gokujō Parodius! ~Kako no Eikō o Motomete~ (arcade, Super Famicom) – One of the selectable characters .
- 1995 – Jikkyō Oshaberi Parodius (Super Famicom, PlayStation) – One of the selectable characters.
- 1996 – Sexy Parodius (arcade, Sega Saturn, PlayStation) – Is the boss, and perhaps owner, of the Parodius mercenary organization.
- 1997 – Paro Wars (PlayStation) – One of the selectable characters.
- 1998 – Little Pirates (pachislot) – Pentaro joins the Pirate Penguin.
- 2000 – CR Parodius Da!/Parodius Da! EX (pachinko)
- 2001 – Hie Hie Penta: Ice Cream Catcher (merchandiser)
- 2003 – Frogger's Journey: The Forgotten Relic (Game Boy Advance) – Pentaro, together with his cousin Mohan.
- 2004 – Deadly Skies III (PlayStation 2) – Unlockable aircraft.
- 2004 – Penta no Tsuri Bōken DX (mobile phone)
- 2006 – CR Gokujō Parodius (pachinko)
- 2008 – New International Track & Field (Nintendo DS) – One of the selectable Konami characters.
- 2008 – Elebits: The Adventures of Kai and Zero (2008 – Nintendo DS): Among the characters, there is a penguin which might be based on Pentaro.
- 2009 – Krazy Kart Racing (iOS) – Pentaro as a playable racer.
- 2010 – Gokuraku Parodius! (pachislot)
- Pentaro's profile in Parodius Da! (GB) states that he is 9 years old in that game.
- Pentaro's overall design with automatic gun, bulletproof vest as well as its color is very close to the penguins found in the movie A Penguin's Memories. Apparently, Konami inspiration with the penguins come from this movie.
|Characters||Tako • Vic Viper • Pentaro • TwinBee|
|Stages||Pirate Island • Las Vegas • Labyrinth • Amusement Park (FC) • Crystal Cave (GB) • Japan • Moai Battleship • Pachinko • Clouds and Bubbles • Ice Cave • Night of the Living Dead • Public Bath (SNES) • Zeo's Fortress|
|Bosses||Cat Battleship • Captain Penguinovski the 3rd • Chichibinta Rika • Eagle Eagle Sabnosuke • Hot Lips • Pig Tide • Yoshiko • Viva Core • Honey Miyako • Pooyan • Iron Maiden MK III • Yoshiwara Dayuu • Showering Beauty • Golgotha Takobee|
|Port Exclusive||Miss Mishitarina • Madam of Yotsuya Q • Viking Moai • Woon Botton • Tako Hyuuma • Penguin Bomb • Crystal Golem • Penguin Conducter • Pinwall • Marvelous Green Mantle • Great Gourmet King Manjiri Kun • Super DX Emperor Penguin|
|Gokujō Parodius! ~Kako no Eikō o Motomete~|
|Characters||Takosuke and Belial • Vic Viper and Lord British • Pentaro and Hanako • TwinBee and WinBee • Hikaru and Akane • Mambo and Samba • Michael and Gabriel • Koitsu and Aitsu • Goemon and Ebisumaru • Dracula-kun and Kid Dracula • Upa and Rupa • Mr. Past Glory|
|Stages||Circo Porto Harborland • Cat Battleship Forever • Candy Land • Traffic Signs • Core Ship Parade • Moai Battleship • The Moon • Disco • Shooting Memories|
|Bosses||Anna Pavlova • Cat Submarine • Eliza • Decoration Core • Crazy Core • Capsule Monster Cappuccino • Yoshiko • Princess Kaguya • Chichibinta Rika • Tako's Cutie • Pentaro X|
|Jikkyō Oshaberi Parodius|
|Characters||Takohiko and Belial • Vic Viper and Lord British • Pentaro and Hanako • TwinBee and WinBee • Sue and Memim • Mike and Ran • Soitsu and Doitsu • Upa and Rupa • Dracula-kun and Kid Dracula • Mr. Past Glory|
|Stages||Hip Hop Disco • School • Donburi Fields • Edo • Sweet Land • High Speed Patrol • Fiesta Base • Polygon Space (Omake 1) • Grand Prix (Omake 2)|
|Bosses||Mirror Ball • Judy • Enormous Hikaru and Akane • Mardock and Warumon's Ships • BaronBee • BoinBee • Goemon Compact • Decoration Core MK II • Cat Battle Train • Big Core MK I (SNES) • Ghost Woman (SNES) • Big BaronBee (SNES) • John Wanjiro (PSX) • Penkuro (PSX) • Temple Lord • Mr. Goldfish's Selling Fortress • Chichibinta Rika • Bacteriya • Robot Wall|