Pikmin 3 Review
Pikmin 3 Box Art
System: Wii U
Dev: Nintendo EAD
Pub: Nintendo
Release: August 4, 2013
Players: 1
Screen Resolution: 480p-1080p Mild Violence

Fortunately, there's time to take things slow and get used to the controls. Pikmin 3 has a soft time limit, in that the astronauts must find enough fruit on the planet to be able to drink a jug of juice every day. There's little danger of finding all the planet's fruit before finishing the story, however. Surviving each day is a bigger challenge. Days go by fairly quickly and all Pikmin must be gathered up by the evening, so planning out where to go and what puzzle or fight to work on is important. It's not difficult to build up a healthy stockpile of fruit, though. I usually only had fruitless days when I was working on defeating a boss and had to retreat for the night before killing it. It feels like Pikimn 3 strikes a good balance between the first game's hard time limit and the second game's complete lack of urgency.

Pikmin 3 Screenshot

Beyond the main story campaign, Pikmin 3 offers several shorter activities. There's a challenge mode that allows one or two players working cooperatively to race against the clock gathering fruit or fighting enemies. That's fun enough, I suppose, but it pales in comparison to the competitive multiplayer joy found in Bingo Battle.

As its name suggests, Bingo Battle pits two players against each other in a contest to complete a row on a bingo card full of fruits and enemies. Some of these items are on both cards; you can see your rival's card on the split screen, and only one of each item exists in the area. Players can directly attack each other, attempt to steal objects that enemy Pikmin are carrying, or grab a cherry bomb that can be used to perform a random but generally massive attack against the enemy. It's a blast, and might just be my favorite part of the game.

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Pikmin 3 demonstrates that Nintendo's commitment to quality development has survived in HD, and I found the game to be a major improvement over its predecessors--of which I wasn't the biggest fan. If it could win over a skeptic like me, I imagine that people who loved the first two games will be thrilled by the way this game keeps the series' heart intact but improves on the level design and gameplay. The control scheme awkwardness and occasional Pikmin-wrangling frustrations are only mild detriments that are easily forgotten thanks to Pikmin 3's beauty, charm, cleverly designed levels, and overall fun factor.

By
Becky Cunningham
Contributing Writer
Date: July 31, 2013

RATING OUT OF 5
RATING DESCRIPTION
5.0
Graphics
Pikmin 3 displays excellence in design, animation, and graphical technology.
3.4
Control
Controls well with the Wii Remote, but you'll also need to use the GamePad's map, which can be awkward.
4.4
Music / Sound FX / Voice Acting
The sound effects help breathe life into the world, and the music is charming as usual.
4.0
Play Value
Story mode is excellently designed (though not incredibly long) and Bingo Battle is boss.
4.5
Overall Rating - Must Buy
Not an average. See Rating legend below for a final score breakdown.
Review Rating Legend
0.1 - 1.9 = Avoid 2.5 - 2.9 = Average 3.5 - 3.9 = Good 4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy
2.0 - 2.4 = Poor 3.0 - 3.4 = Fair 4.0 - 4.4 = Great 5.0 = The Best

Game Features:

  • Players can play using Wii Remote Plus and Nunchuk-based controls or the Wii U GamePad controller.
  • The GamePad acts as an overhead map and radar to track Pikmin movements in real time.
  • The greater processing and HD capabilities of the Wii U console are put to extensive use, resulting in a more intricately designed world.
  • After completing a stage, the replay feature allows players the option to review their results using the GamePad and TV
  • In addition to the five original types of Pikmin encountered in previous games, the new Rock Pikmin bring powerful new abilities and are able to crack hard outer shells of enemies and break through solid barriers.
  • Mission Mode challenges players to earn the most treasure in a given time.

  • Screenshots / Images
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