Review: Pikmin 3

Published May 11, 2015 by Amanda B. Greene

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Pikmin 3 does some things right, but there are some stepbacks I think. It’s still a great game, but there could’ve been more to the story and challenge modes. I haven’t been able to try out the multiplayer aspects, so I can’t comment on that. Pikmin are as adorable as ever, so let’s go through their latest adventure.

**Review**

7.5/10

Story

It’s to be expected, since it was about three explorers searching for food, but the story felt off. It was more light-hearted than the first Pikmin game where Olimar had less time to repair his ship and worried about not being able to see his family again. There was no issue having a stable supply of fruit for every night – no real struggle. I would’ve liked the main campaign to be longer too, for it felt short. Although, there are some mysteries and hints that are interesting and will probably lead to a sequel in the future.

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Aside from Alph, who reminded me a little of Olimar, the other main characters weren’t as likable. They wouldn’t stop talking about how much they were starving, which got annoying after a while – tolerable, but annoying.

Most of their journals by the end of the day were tutorials, not so much personal logs of each characters’ concerns or stories from their homeland. Their curiosity in the Pikmin could have been better expressed, with more detailed descriptions and I would’ve liked to read some extensive theories, but maybe next time.

*Spoilers* Admittedly, I was a little geeked when I found the first message left by Captain Olimar. There are a lot of data files scattered across the regions, including well-hidden secret files that I have yet to find them all. Once you regroup with the rest of your squad, the search for the cosmic-drive key turns into a search for Olimar as you explore PNF-404.

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Gameplay

When I first used the Wii U Gamepad, I didn’t like it at first, but eventually I got used to it. Overall, I think I still prefer the original Wii Remote + Nunchuk controls from Pikmin. 

It’s nice to split up your group to focus on different projects, but most of the time I felt the need to have everyone together to solve some puzzle-like segments so that feature was good and bad. It felt alien to me to control more than one character. Maybe Nintendo can somehow work something out to where you have four-player splitscreen for the main campaign like how 2K managed to get that to work for the Borderlands 2 Remastered Collection.

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New Pikmin were added – Flying and Rock Pikmin. I think they’re mostly good additions to the series, although the Rock Pikmin were probably over-used throughout the main campaign; you had to break down a lot of glass and crystal formations and they’re powerful when many are thrown directly at enemies. Flying Pikmin are almost as fast as White Pikmin, I think, but as a consequence they are bad at dealing damage.

As for general gameplay, it played out mostly the same as previous titles with a few tweaks and mission changes here and there. Gathering fruit is the same as collecting treasure or ship parts. The updates they made to the series were mostly good, like how all the Pikmin now live in one Onion instead of several. The map allowed for better planning for the day, but you can also get side-tracked and forget some things. I didn’t have any big issues with the gameplay.

Music

Like I said before, the music was mostly remixed from previous titles, but there’s nothing wrong with that. Without good music and sound effects, the Pikmin series would not be as enjoyable. Everything worked well and suited the situations and areas.

Final Note

I may be harder on this game than most, with mostly great reviews across the board. 8 or 9 out of ten was the general scoring from nearly everyone. It’s a challenging game that is good to fill in the void of the Wii U’s lackluster year so far, even though it’s not a newer one. I apologize for taking so long to finish this review, I had to go through final exams during the last week of April. Hope you have a nice day! 🙂

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