BADGP Reviews: Pikmin 3

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Pikmin 3 (Nintendo)

The Newb and The Vet Review

Alex Linna & Derek Buzan

August 8, 2013

Pikmin is about David and Goliath moments.  The underdog overpowering the un-overpowerable.  It is in these victories that one finds the appeal of the Pikmin series to say it simply.  The satisfaction of watching the behemoths fall to your tiny minions is feeling not soon forgotten.  There is also a strategy game to be found within the Pikmin formula.  This is largely experienced in the time management and balancing of the player’s specific Pikmin populations.  Pikmin 3 is the newest offering in Nintendo’s odd real-time strategy series.

What is Pikmin 3?(Derek)

Pikmin 3 is a story about a crew searching to find food for their dying planet Kopali, who has seemed to run out of resources to feed their planet. It is their mission to adventure out amongst the stars and find a new source of food to bring back to Kopali. On their adventure something terrible happens and the adventurers become separated from their ship and themselves! It is your Job to take command of one of these brave aliens and round up the crew and escape from this horrible monster infested world you have been trapped on before you are eaten or starve to death! To help you on this monster infested planet are what they call Pikmin, little small alien inhabitants that resemble flowers. As you gather these small helpful aliens and turn them into a mob of creative destruction, you figure out that there is a piece missing from your ship that you will need to travel back to your home world.  To top it all off some other space explorer from another planet has picked it up by accident thinking that it is some rare treasure, I wonder who it could be!?

Expectations (Alex)

Obviously, it has been a long time since a Pikmin game has been unleashed upon the world. So it was difficult to know what to expect after nearly a decade since the release of Pikmin 2.  Like Yakuza 4 & 5, Pikmin 3 has as many playable characters as the number at the end of the title of the game.  Unlike Yakuza, which uses multiple characters to weave a complex narrative, Pikmin 3’s three protagonists exist for strategic gameplay possibilities.  The depth and intensity that this brings to the gameplay experience certainly meets expectations and along with other innovations and even more refinements to the formula Pikmin 3 is lived up to my likely unreasonably high expectations and may even surpassed them.

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Expectations (Derek)

This is my first “true” experience with the Pikmin series, besides me playing PIkmin 1 for about 20 minutes, and I really enjoyed myself. With new Pikmin, new bosses, and controlling three adventurers at once, it seemed like this game would be pushing the envelope on the series and would look HD beautiful at the same time! I was looking for a unique experience that I can only get on my Wii U, and I think I have found it.

What’s New? (Alex)

Pikmin 3 is a case-study in refinement.  The inclusion of a third playable character adds some much needed depth and allows the player another tool in fruit collection and enemy destruction.  This allows for larger levels and the ability to more effectively explore and uncover their secrets.  There are two new types of Pikmin.  Rock and pink/flying.  Rock Pikmin replace the hefty purple Pikmin from Pikmin 2 and can be utilized to smash open glass-like objects and obstructions.  Flying/pink Pikmin can fly over water cutting down on their travel time, but have weak attack power, but they are exceptionally useful in numerous situations.  Other small, but noticeable improvements are found in the existence of only one onion instead of one for each type of Pikmin, and when a character is left at the “base-like” area they will immediately begin picking Pikmin in order to further maximize utility and maximize the ever so valuable resource of time.

How Does it Stack Up? (Alex) 

In short, Pikmin 3is the best Pikmin experience to date (it had better be after 9 years!).  The narrative is mot as urgent or engrossing as the original’s but better than the second’s dumb premise.  Small improvements to combat, more playable characters, and having only one onion to worry about allows it rise the top of the Pikmin pile.  When compared to other strategy games, the word that comes to mind when describing Pikmin 3 is “light.”  Pikmin 3 is not an incredibly deep game like XCOM: Enemy Unknown or Fire Emblem: Awakening, but makes up for it in its masterful execution and strange, but intense pacing.

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Ending Thoughts (Derek)

This game is good but I am not sure if I would call it amazing. There a few things that bothered me with this game. One of the first things I noticed about this installment was that it was crazy short! After I finished the game I had to go back and play some more because I just didn’t get enough of it. I then went to mission mode and multiplayer to see if there was something new to be added to my Pikmin 3 experience. Depressingly the only one I enjoyed was the Bingo battle set up. Mission mode was just the story cut up into small bits with you trying to be a score. Collecting treasure ot beating bosses seemed very lack luster after the story mode. I am just glad that they added Co-op to this mode or I would have not found it fun at all. Bingo match was a bunch of fun chaos! Trying to collect the items before your opponent with monsters trying to kill you, it makes for one heck of a scramble. To all the bad stuff I talked about there is so much more good. The story was great, I liked the characters, the fruit for food idea was awesome, and I really like what they did with the new Pikmin. The last boss in my opinion was super fun and challenging and a great ending to a game.  Pikmin 3 has its share of negatives but in the end it comes out on top as a must needed Wii U experience.

Good:

+Great new story

+Boss Fights

+Mechanics

Bad:

-Short

-not much after the story

Derek – 8.6                  Alex – 9.3                  BAD – 9.0

Image Credits:

http://blogs.edmontonjournal.com/2013/08/19/pikmin-3-let-even-one-die-and-you-are-historys-greatest-monster/

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