Fun is in Bloom
Pikmin fans have been patiently waiting for the third installment of the series to arrive for a long time now. It's almost been a decade since Pikmin 2 came out on the Nintendo GameCube. As Shigeru Miyamoto once said, "A delayed game is eventually good, but a bad game is bad forever." That philosophy went into the development of Pikmin 3, having the game delayed multiple times throughout its creation. The final product is at last here and on the Wii U. It is with pleasure I say that Pikmin 3 was well worth the wait.
The planet Koppai is in desperate need of food, so they send off three different inhabitants of the planet, the Captain Charlie, his faithful partner Alph, and a botanist named Brittany to explore a mysterious planet they call PNF-404. However, the landing doesn't go as smoothly as they expected, and their ship crash lands, separating the three from one another. Eventually coming across a helpful group of plant-like creatures known as Pikmin, Alph and Brittany (who meet up early in the game) decide to use their new friendly army to carry the life-saving fruit that PNF-404 possesses while searching for Captain Charlie.
|Let's vogue, Pikmin pals!|
|Yellow Pikmin are also the fastest diggers.|
They could be great archaeologists!
|The spoils of war.|
|Split up your duties for maximum efficiency.|
|And the wall comes tumbling down.|
|Chuck Pikmin to Brittany's side |
of the map to help her out.
|Lock on and beat down.|
|Open wide! ...Actually, wait.|
Don't do that!
|Twilight River is a gorgeous location.|
Meanwhile, the Wii U GamePad and Pro Controller controls aren't exactly like the GameCube versions. The second stick actually does camera movement this time around instead of circling your Pikmin around your current character. Instead, you have to hold a shoulder button while using the left analog stick to aim where to throw your Pikmin. This is confusing at first, but once you're accustomed to this new control setup, it will become second nature. It just won't replace the near perfection and ease of use of using the Wii Remote and Nunchuk. Still, there's a problem with needing to babysit straggling Pikmin regardless of which control setup you use. Get too far ahead of Pikmin, and they will walk into walls, becoming idle. This can get annoying tracking down stragglers only because it takes time away from doing other, more important tasks.
Depending on how fast you are and how efficient your day-planning is in Pikmin 3, the total time it will take to beat the game will vary. For me, it took 42 game days and around 17 hours of gameplay time. The nice thing about days is that you can restart them mid-day, and you can even choose to go back to previous days. Of course, if you save, the events that occurred during the subsequent days will be like they never happened, so do be careful.
Alongside the single player story mode, there are two other modes to enjoy. The first is Challenge mode, where one or two players can try out different missions on five specially-made maps. The goals are either to collect as much treasure as possible, defeat as many enemies as possible, or to defeat a boss as quickly as possible. Best scores are shared via the internet so players can see where they stack up against the world.
The other mode is for two players and is a competitive one, Bingo Battle. Available in twelve unique maps (each needing to be unlocked by playing the previous one), Bingo Battle tasks each player with defeating enemies or taking treasure to fill squares on their bingo sheet. Get four filled-in squares in any direction and you are the winner. The only unfortunate part about Bingo Battle is that there is no online multiplayer, something that would have been perfect and not system-demanding for players around the world to enjoy this mode. As it stands, you can only enjoy Bingo Battle locally, which a darn shame.
|Pikmin and Bingo? A match made in heaven.|
|Use the KopPad to create some lovely shots.|
[SPC Says: 9.5/10]