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Pikmin 3 Deluxe – Nintendo Switch

Now £50.32
Nintendo Switch
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Grow a squad of adorable, plant-like Pikmin to traverse a strange world and save your planetThis deluxe version of the Pikmin 3 game includes new side-story missions featuring Olimar and Louie, the ability to play Story mode with a friend and all DLC stages from the original release. Feeling competitive? Enjoy fierce head-to-head Bingo Battles and online leader boards for Mission mo…
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Awards

Rating

  • Graphics
  • Multiplayer
  • Story (Career Mode)
  • Originality

You Might Like

  • Unique and addictive gameplay with expansive areas
  • Memorable story with likable characters
  • Mission Mode, Bingo Battle, and Side Stories
  • Beautiful visuals
  • Game-changing co-op mode

Might Not Like

  • Time limit
  • Lack of online modes
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Description

Grow a squad of adorable, plant-like Pikmin to traverse a strange world and save your planetThis deluxe version of the Pikmin 3 game includes new side-story missions featuring Olimar and Louie, the ability to play Story mode with a friend and all DLC stages from the original release. Feeling competitive? Enjoy fierce head-to-head Bingo Battles and online leader boards for Mission mode. Three brave explorers land on planet PNF-404 on a mission to find food for their starving home planet. After a crash landing, these explorers must work with Pikmin to reunite and complete their mission. Direct, toss and grow Pikmin with different abilities and strengths; winged Pikmin can fly, while blue Pikmin can breathe underwater. By strategically choosing the right Pikmin for the job at hand and changing between the three captains (or coordinating with a second player), you can work efficiently to collect fruit and grow your Pikmin squad. When you arent busy collecting fruit and saving your planet, try out Mission mode to accomplish set requirements like defeating enemies or collecting items. Looking for some friendly competition? In Bingo Battle you must use Pikmin to retrieve items on your bingo card before your opponent does. With more options for cooperative play, its easy for newcomers to start their Pikmin journey, new side stories and more, these tiny Pikmin are in for their biggest adventure yet.

Pik Up The Pace!

Nintendo’s real-time strategy series, Pikmin, finally makes its debut on the Nintendo Switch with a deluxe port of the Wii U classic, Pikmin 3, and its quality-of-life improvements and exciting bonus content really add to this already expansive, addictive, charming adventure.

Return To The Pikmin Planet

Three intrepid explorers crash land on PNF-404 during an expedition to collect food for their dying home planet, Koppai. To complete their mission, our heroes must reunite by teaming up with the curious plant-like creatures called Pikmin. The story is simple, but its stakes are high, and it feels like a natural progression of the first two games’ stories, while also standing out on its own.

Not only are the Pikmin charming as ever, but the three main Koppaites are interesting, and their lovable personalities really shine during their interactions. The trio includes Alph, the cheery young engineer; Brittany, the caring botanist; and their “brave” leader, Captain Charlie. Their experience with the Pikmin leads to them sharing a special bond and learning the values of planning and teamwork.

This is the best-looking Pikmin game so far, taking place in a beautiful, nature-filled world that gives the player five unique and expansive areas to explore, such as a colourful garden, a snowy tundra, and an autumn forest. Even the hostile creatures that inhabit the world are whimsical in their designs and names, like the Bulborb, the Fiery Blowhog, and the Armoured Mawdad.

A Race Against Time

The main goal, aside from collecting fruits, is to find the ship’s cosmic-drive key in order to start the journey home. Pikmin games consist of multiple in-game days, with each one having its own time limit; when the clock hits zero, you move on to the next day. However, Pikmin 3 has a refreshing take on day progression by having each fruit you find be converted into juice, which our heroes drink in order to live another day. With no juice, it’s game over!

I understand that time limits can put people off playing the story because it sounds as if it could be stressful, but I think that’s the series’ main appeal. This feature motivates you to manage your time and get as much done as possible. Once the story is finished, it encourages you replay the game to collect every fruit or finish the game in as few in-game days as possible.

This game plays responsively with any controller, but I’d definitely recommend the Switch’s Joycons. These replace the Wii’s already excellent pointer controls with a more intuitive lock-on system. The ability to see the map allows you to send captains to a location using the “Go Here!” feature, except the Wii U Gamepad is now replaced with map button and control stick, making it less tricky than using your finger to control the map.

The port even has small yet effective improvements that mean it surpasses the original game. Small changes include the larger radius of your whistle and being left with an army of one Pikmin type when disbanding your squad. Big changes include switching to any captain at any time or having the S.S. Drake call every stray Pikmin in the area back to base so they don’t get left behind!

The Small Garden Of Little Soldiers

The gameplay loop is to raise your Pikmin numbers by having them bring pellets and dead enemies to their mothership, the Onion. Pikmin can join your group if you use your whistle, and they can attack enemies and carry objects by throwing them or using the charge action. However, only 100 Pikmin can be out in the field at one time, so planning what numbers of each Pikmin type to take with you and utilising them to their fullest potential-while ensuring you keep them alive-is the key to the most efficient, satisfying day possible.

The Pikmin are wonderfully cute and charming, and letting these soldiers die-if they get eaten by enemies, or if you leave them behind at the end of the day-makes you feel genuinely sad, driving you to do better to keep them alive next time.

Along with the return of the fire-resistant Red Pikmin, electric-resistant Yellow Pikmin and aquatic Blue Pikmin, the game introduces two new Pikmin types in this army of adorable creatures, adding variety to the game. These are the tough-as-nails Rock Pikmin, which destroy crystal walls when thrown, while also being crush-resistant; and the flying Winged Pikmin, who are weak in battle but able to carry items in the air.

Again, the Switch port improves the Pikmin’s A.I. and pathfinding, while also making less subtle changes. For example, Pikmin won’t immediately join your squad when quickly whistling at them, which means they won’t be interrupted when already doing tasks, unlike in the original version.

It Takes Two

For the first time in the series, the whole story mode can now be played with two players. This is not only a huge game-changer since it shapes up strategies in a unique way, but also because it makes this port worth playing regardless of whether you already own the Wii U version. In fact, every game mode can be played with two players!

Returning from the Wii U version, Bingo Battle is the game’s competitive multiplayer mode. To win, each team (Blue vs Red) must collect treasures and defeated enemies to create a line on their bingo card, or collect a “Victory Macaroon”. This mode can get very chaotic in the most fun way possible, and you can unlock up to twelve stages upon repeated playthroughs. It would’ve been even better if Bingo Battle could be played online, especially considering other Wii U-to-Switch ports have online functionality.

Next is the Mission Mode. These consist of timed challenges, requiring you to use your Pikmin to collect as many treasures as you can, or defeat all the enemies you can. Playing this mode improves your ability to plan strategies the more you play, and it’s so much fun to replay these challenges and get the best score possible. Even better, all of the DLC from the Wii U version is automatically unlocked without needing to pay for it.

Switch Up The Mission

If you’re looking for a challenge that the original didn’t have, then you can choose to play the story mode with different difficulties, with “Ultra Spicy” being the hardest. Along with this, there’s an achievement system in the form of “Badges” which are unlocked by completing certain tasks, adding a new layer of challenge to the game. There’s also the surprise return of Pikmin 2’s “Piklopedia”, which provides information on every enemy in the game, told from the perspectives of each character.

The main selling point of the Switch port, however, is the fourteen brand-new side story missions featuring Captain Olimar (the protagonist of the first two games) and his companion, Louie. These play out like the Mission Mode stages, but with remixed level designs from the main game; although simple and super easy, they’re still just as replayable if you want to beat your high score. Better yet, the “Olimar’s Assignment” missions cleverly reuse top-notch, charming animations (and add new ones, too), explaining the two captains’ motivations for why they’re on the familiar planet for the third time. However, I wish the “Olimar’s Comeback” missions had more cutscenes for consistency.

Verdict

With quality-of-life improvements and added bonus content, on top of its already memorable story and addictive gameplay, Pikmin 3 Deluxe is the definitive way to experience this Wii U classic. If you’re interested in this quirky strategy series or a long-time fan desperately waiting for Pikmin 4, definitely give this galactic adventure a shot!

The third game in the Pikmin series is as delightful as ever. An enjoyable level of difficulty and challenges will keep players of all ages entertained and engaged.

A Classic In The (re)Making

Pikmin 3 is the latest Wii U gem to be re-purposed for Switch. Much like other offerings, it comes with all of its original DLC and a sprinkling of new content. Here it’s additional missions starring Olimar and Louie, All of this makes- making this deluxe version the definitive one.

Pikmin 3 has received a fair number of tweaks for its Switch release. Difficulty options, a hint system, unlockable achievements known as badges, that are given out upon completion of specific tasks or milestones. These little additions don’t revolutionise the experience for return players, but they do help make the game more inviting.

A Familiar Sight

Pikmin is just as delightful now as when it first appeared on the Nintendo GameCube. The Story begins – as previous games did – with a crash landing. This time around, you take control of three new explorers named Alph, Brittany, and Charlie, who travel across the cosmos in search of food for their starving planet. A collision with a meteor, sends the crew plummeting to the planet of the Pikmin. This is where you, the player, comes in. You’re tasked with reuniting the explorers, navigating the planet’s perils, and retrieving enough food to save their home world.

You’ll start each day landing on the surface of the planet and spend the next 15 minutes (real time) retrieving treasures and unlocking new routes from the surrounding areas. You’ll have to retrieve all of your Pikmin before the day ends so they can climb aboard their ship and head to the safety of orbit. The three main characters you play are fairly helpless and you’ll have to rely on an army of Pikmin to accomplish anything.

Each Pikmin type is unique. Red Pikmin, for example, are resistant to fire and are fierce fighters. Rock Pikmin – one of two new types in this title – can take more damage and can shatter crystals. Pikmin are akin to ants; one alone is helpless, but in large numbers they can accomplish many things. They’ll take down foes much larger and deadlier than themselves, and they can carry much more than their bodyweight.

The general mechanics of the series remain unchanged. But Pikmin 3 finds a comfortable middle ground between the faster paced tension of the original Pikmin and the more thoughtful pace of Pikmin 2. Just as in the first title, you cannot explore the planet forever in Pikmin 3. But where the original had a set amount of days, the length of your journey is dictated by your food supply. This allows you to extend how many days you have left by finding new food sources.

Luckily fruit is plentiful. You’ll find strawberries, plums, and other deliciousness scattered around every level of the planet. You’ll soon build up an ample supply and buy more than enough time to every corner of the game. You’ll also be on the hunt for useful items, that allow your ship to travel farther, opening up new areas to explore.

Some of these objects will be in plain sight, but most will require a bit of strategy to reach. This is where the joy of Pikmin’s gameplay comes in. Retrieving fruit or items requires negotiating the environment using all of the Pikmin abilities at your disposal. There’s an almost Metroid-esque sense of progression, meaning you’ll be returning to areas once you have new skills and Pikmin to play around with. Also, as you work your way across levels, you and your Pikmin will discover and create shortcuts for more efficient routes back to your base. Exploration is constantly rewarding.

A Rewarding Experience

Multitasking is of the essence in Pikmin 3. The sense of accomplishment from dividing up your troops and retrieving multiple items in a single day is incredibly satisfying. The emphasis on multitasking mixed with the ability to play the entire story cooperatively with a friend is delightful.

It’s hard not to grow attached to the Pikmin, their mannerisms and the sounds they make are endearing. Watching them charge into battle is nerve-wracking. You’ll feel genuinely guilty when a Pikmin falls in battle. You’ll feel even worse if you accidentally leave some behind at the end of the day. The game keeps a running total of all the Pikmin that have fallen under your command, which is painful. Losses are inevitable, especially during boss battles, but it doesn’t make things easier.

Pikmin 3 Deluxe introduces new side story missions featuring Olimar and Louie. These self-contained missions give you a set amount of Pikmin and a simple task to complete. These are usually to collect as much treasure, fruit, and enemy carcasses as you can before the day is out. Mission mode is fairly similar, with challenges that range from defeating bosses quickly to retrieving all treasures in a level. Bingo Battle is fun, turning the usual gameplay into a head-to-head race. Matches quickly descend into chaos as you battle roaming predators but also enemy Pikmin as well. The lack of online support however restricts the mode’s appeal.

Final Thoughts

Pikmin 3 Deluxe holds up wonderfully on Switch thanks to its unique gameplay and well constructed levels. The tweaks and additions make this title more enjoyable for returning players as well as for newer players, who may be trying the Pikmin series for the first time. There is no other series quite like Pikmin.

Zatu Score

Rating

  • Graphics
  • Multiplayer
  • Story (Career Mode)
  • Originality

You might like

  • Unique and addictive gameplay with expansive areas
  • Memorable story with likable characters
  • Mission Mode, Bingo Battle, and Side Stories
  • Beautiful visuals
  • Game-changing co-op mode

Might not like

  • Time limit
  • Lack of online modes