Pikmin 3 Preview (Featuring: Kid Ica)

     As we all should know by now, the Nintendo Wii U will host a variety of games, including the game Pikmin 3. Pikmin (1) and Pikmin 2 were both released on the Nintendo GameCube, with Pikmin being released shortly after the GameCube's launch and Pikmin 2 being a game that got released almost 3 years after Pikmin. Pikmin was a very successful title that was both critically and commercially acclaimed while Pikmin 2 ended up being even more critically and commercially acclaimed. The Pikmin series is an excellent series that many people love and have been waiting eight years for a third entry in the series, so how does Pikmin 3 do? Well, let's take a look at how it's forming in this preview for Pikmin 3.

     Story (Preview): Both Pikmin and Pikmin 2 had a compelling story, with Pikmin's story being that Captain Olimar crash landed on Earth and had only 30 days to find all of his ship's missing parts and return to his home planet, Hocotate, or else he would end up dyeing from the planet's oxygen, a gas that is poisonous to his kind. Pikmin 2, on the other hand, had Captain Olimar return to Hocotate and find out that his company went bankrupt, leading to his company's president to assign him and Louie to go to Earth and find treasure to pay the company's debt. So, what is Pikmin 3's story? Pikmin 3's story has been hazy, even after Pikmin 3 was talked about at E3 2012, but a few ideas are present. We already know that Captain Olimar won't be present as a playable character in this game and that you'll play with four other characters. Personally, I think that the story will end up being that something happened to Captain Olimar after the end of Pikmin 2, leading the president to send four captains to go and save him, but anything is possible to be the story. One thing you can see in the video below is that all of the Pikmin are only collecting fruit. Why is that? Is it because Hocotate ran out of food, so the four captains need to go to Earth to collect food? That can lead to what the story is. Although we don't have the slightest knowledge of what the exact story is going to be, I would expect it to be just as compelling as Pikmin and Pikmin 2's story, especially with Shigeru Miyamoto behind the job.


     Gameplay (Preview): If you have played Pikmin or Pikmin 2, you already know the drill. You go to the planet Earth, (re)discover the Pikmin, reproduce Pikmin, use the Pikmin to accomplish your mission, and kill enemies in your path (which does also count as reproducing Pikmin). Well, the same-old same-old seems to be appearing in Pikmin 3, which is a good thing. As shown in each and every one of these photos and videos below, there are many gameplay differences. First of all, you will be playing with more than one captain, excluding Captain Olimar. This can provide a more in-depth strategy while delivering a better gameplay experience by allowing you to split up and finish your job faster. Next, and most notable, brand-new enemies will be discovered in this next installment in the Pikmin series. As seen in the above and below picture, you will be fighting an enemy very similar to a bulborb but has an extendable tongue that eats Pikmin, and you will be fighting a giant, centipede-like enemy with glass as protection, leaving only rock Pikmin available to destroy this menacing opponent. Another thing you can see in the video below is that there is a bar that goes up with every fruit that your Pikmin put in your ship's pod while you have a time limit. One thing that I am disappointed about is "what happened to the meter at the top that shows the day coming to an end?" I really don't want that to go away although the new method does look interesting and effective.

     In addition to the story mode, we also know that a 4-player local multiplayer mode will be available along with the possibility of a challenge mode. The 4-player local multiplayer mode could be anything, but I have a feeling that it will be similar to the multiplayer mode Pikmin 2 presented. Pikmin 2's multiplayer mode had you go against somebody else to try and collect either 4 yellow marbles or your opponent's marble, so Pikmin 3 could have something where you take your opponent's marbles. It could even end up being that you have to make your opponents's Pikmin become extinct! The challenge mode is more of a wild card. Pikmin presented a challenge mode where you have to reproduce as many Pikmin within one day as fast as you can while Pikmin 2 had you quickly collect money from treasure and enemies.

     Whatever Nintendo and Shigeru Miyamoto, creator of the Pikmin series, presents, it will, most likely, end up being as creative as Pikmin 3's predecessors along with it having even more, fun gameplay elements that makes Pikmin 3 even more addictive than past Pikmin games. From what is shown in the video below, Pikmin 3 is taking many steps in the right direction and has many different elements that make the game a lot more fun than Pikmin and Pikmin 2.

     Graphics (Preview): With HD being present in the third entry to this already beautiful series, Pikmin 3 is bound to be the best-looking game in the Pikmin series. As Pikmin introduced and brought down to Pikmin 2 and, next, Pikmin 3, the environments look very realistic and have gorgeous, forest-like areas with actual, real-life objects infesting the scene. Items like Duracell batteries that are found scattered around areas in Pikmin 2 made the series look great, suggesting that the same will appear in Pikmin 3. I am just a bit concerned about the HD when considering the fact that the Wii U GamePad will only display the map, not the game. Sure, you can just use an HD TV, but, if your TV doesn't support HD, the game might not look as good as it should.

     Sound/Music (Preview): In the music sector, the Pikmin series has always presented some pleasant tunes that make the game more relaxing and realistic. With little sounds like the sounds that Pikmin and enemies make in prequels, they just suggest that even more, better music will appear in this sequel. The trailer presented in E3 2012 just suggests that the game will sound even better than Pikmin and Pikmin 2 (see below for the trailer). Pikmin 3 is yet another Pikmin game that sounds like it will have better noises than the already spectacular sounds the prequels presented years ago. 

     The Conclusion (Preview): Pikmin 3 will end up being one of the most enthralling, attracting, and engaging entries in this already-excellent series. With HD graphics blended into the addictively fun-looking gameplay, this is going to end up being the best game in the Pikmin series, and, possibly, this will end up becoming one of the best Wii U games of all time. Also, with a 4-player local multiplayer mode, it's hard to say that this just can't get any better. Although the story has not yet been revealed yet, it will become as great as the stories that both predecessors presented back in the GameCube era. Even with past melodies being edited to fit the required needs now, Pikmin 3 sounds better than ever. Pikmin 3 is going to become an excellent, triple-A title that I would be happy to pay any price for and that I cannot wait one more second for.


Kid Ica's Thoughts:

     Story (Preview): I'm really excited for Pikmin 3. One of the things I have been wondering about the most since the game's announcement is where the story will go now. Apricot has already described the story of the first 2 games in great detail, but I have slightly different thoughts about the story. Since prequels have seemed to be Nintendo's strong point recently, I'm guessing this game might take place before Olimar even existed! Maybe it'll be about 4 little astronauts who discovered this planet before anyone else did! What I'm saying is, if it doesn't have Olimar as one of the playable characters, I'm pretty sure it won't be directly connected to the story of the other 2 games. Maybe it'll even be a different planet this time! I hope Nintendo gives us some story details soon so I can stop wondering.

     Controls (Preview): I was really disappointed when Nintendo said they strongly recommended playing with a regular Wii Remote instead of the Wii U Gamepad. Even though from what I've seen Wii Remote controls did improve the first 2 games in terms of accuracy in throwing your Pikmin, I wish they would do some new control scheme for the Gamepad. Maybe touch-screen controlled Pikmin throwing? I don't have many great suggestions, but I'm still disappointed.

     The Conslusion (Preview): Pikmin 3 will be the most ambitious game in the series. Trying to squeeze in 4 person co-op multi-player, a decent solo experience, and a huge, beautiful HD world with tons of places to explore and little creatures moving around all at the same time is probably going to be a challenge for Nintendo, especially if they plan on releasing the game before next year. I don’t really blame them for not adding online multi-player. Despite a few minor objections I have, such as Nintendo strongly suggesting you play with the Wii remote instead of the Wii U Gamepad, it looks to be the best game in the series so far, and I can hardly wait to buy it.

Pikmin 3 Preview