Posted by Caitlyn Muncy on Jun 11, 2012

Pikmin 3 First Looks [E3 2012]

Last week at E3, I got to spend a little time with Pikman 3 on the Wii U, and I can say that it was a rather pleasant experience that gave me a renewed fondness for Pikmin in general. Each demo session was about 7 minutes long, which was ample time to give you an idea of the basic controls and get accustomed to the adorable new Rock Pikmin. The integration of the Wii U was not as I had hoped though, as it didn’t act as much more than a map. This was a bit sad to see, but hopefully it will have more use once the final game is out.

Your obvious mission is to retrieve fruit and bring it back to the ship, but you can also pick up gold and the corpses of slain enemies for extra points. The deaths of your foes would be quite tragic if not for the adorable little ghosts that float away from their bodies. (Still kind of creepy) These tiny ant-like creatures have to face monsters that want nothing more than to eat them. Trying to look more like the insects they were modeled after, there were aspects to the game that made them feel more “life-like” if you will, such as building bridges to lessen the distance back to the ship, and acting of their own accord to retrieve things like gold in a single file line down a swirling vine.

From what we saw at the Nintendo press briefing, we know that there will be 4 new characters to play as in the final version of the game, but for the time being, we only get to see the new Pikmin. The Rock Pikmin and the Pink Pikmin are the two new kids on the block, but we only know about the Rock version at the moment. The Pink one was only shown onscreen at the briefing, but will obviously not be discussed until a later date as they don’t want to give away the whole cake at once.

The excruciatingly cute Rock Pikmin are to be used as blunt-force weapons that will crack through shells, glass walls, and other similar items. It looks a bit like a hunk of graphite with googly eyes and a violet flower on its head. (and I shall name him squishy) They don’t seem to be able to latch onto targets too well, but they can cause damage by charging at their enemies. The boss battle that was available at the demo put you up against a very perturbed caterpillar that needed to be pelted with Pock Pikmin to break his hard shell. Once the shell was taken care of, you’d them send in the little Red Pikmin to finish the job. It takes quite a bit of coordination and timing to get things to work out correctly, but that’s what draws you in so much. I would’ve played that demo for hours if I could have.

While I can’t fully say one way or another that the game will be great or not, I can say that the demo was worthwhile. However, as we don’t know what the other characters and additional Pikmin will add to the game, or what the Wii U will bring in for that matter, we can only speculate for the time being. My take on it is that the game overall will be enjoyable (probably too short on gameplay for everyones taste), but the Wii U aspect will be severely lacking. We’ll know more information as it leads up to its supposed release in November of this year.


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