Platform: Wii U
Rating: 3 (PEGI) / E (ESRB)
One thing that I that I have missed over the last nine years is a new Pikmin game. I was very interested in what Nintendo was going to come up with after the vast wait. Does this live up to the levels of greatness Pikmin 1 and 2 delivered?
This time you take on the role of three characters from Koppai who have gone on a voyage to planet PNF-404 in search of food. In search of food? Sounds crazy already right? Well its not so crazy, apparently the fine citizens of Koppai have eaten nearly all the food on the due to massive population growth and are now in a right pickle.
Of course, not everything goes to plan, why would it in a Pikmin game? On the descent onto PNF-404 the ship malfunctions sending each member of the crew to different parts of the world. Sounds a bit grim for a Nintendo game, right?
The new controls adding the incorporation of their new tablet controller was exactly what fans were looking for. Simple things like point and clicking points on the map where you could assign your characters to walk to from the tablet controller made for much convenience. The story gave us three new characters and the ability to control three different characters rather than two in the 2nd game. It also added better multi-tasking ability as you could command a character to walk to a specified location while you controlled the other. This gave the game a lot more strategic thinking as you could have three characters with three different groups of pikmin all trying to accomplish a task.
The Wii Remote was just as fun and offered a fresh new take on playing the game over the GamePad, one huge advantage using the Wii Remote was the extra long battery life compared to the sucky GamePad battery life. I love being able to throw the Pikmin using the Wii Remote and was super fun. All In all both control methods worked brilliantly.
They also gave us the addition of two new types of pikmin that added new challenges and bosses. The characters were all likable, and had their own personalities. The game added in some new and
interesting surprises and concepts that new and past Pikmin fans would love. There were many different fruits to collect, some in puzzling places.
Level design is fantastic with some of the best visuals seen on the Wii U yet or in my opinion on any console at the moment. What I love is the vast cave systems and sprawling wilderness, I am guessing that it is a future version of Earth as you will find what looks like remnants of human made artifacts like plant pots and bags littered throughout the landscape. The levels are vast and feature some outstanding weather/particle effects. Lighting is also something that must be mentioned as Nintendo sure have worked on this a lot, it feels natural and at times haunting. My favorite aspect, however, is the water. Wow, it’s stunning, and this has to be the best looking water seen in a game yet.
Monsters are what make Pikmin games kick ass. The design of these nasty creatures is at times crazy. Nintendo have really gone to town on the designs. Some of them really are a bit creepy but others look kinda cute. They are very creative and this shines through a lot. The boss battles are epic on so many levels, Nintendo really put time into creating these battles as they take a bit of thinking, not your typical boss fights and will have you using you Pikmin in all kinds of ways to get out of sticky situations.
Musically its kinda barren in parts but does offer some rather mood altering music. The music does set the tone through the game and some of the level sound effects are rather brilliant. Some of the best music is when your return in to space each night before the next mission.
The most disappointing part of the game was the lack of online play in the multiplayer section. You can replay bosses and attempt any other various challenges throughout the game for a high score that is globally ranked. But you were not given the option to play the challenges with a friend online, and only had the option of local co-op.
Nintendo really have worked their magic into this game and it offers one of the most unique and breathtaking worlds gaming has to offer. The level of detail is staggering yet the game is very short. Although it misses a few key features like an online mode Pikmin 3 can still hold its own against the crowd and stands tall in what it delivers. This is a game I would highly recommend to any gamer of any age, as it will offer that sense of wonderment most games few deliver.