Pikmin and Pikmin 2 were two of the most beloved GameCube games ever, which means everyone has been psyched about the idea of Pikmin 3. Fortunately, the game was worth the wait. It was officially revealed at Nintendo’s E3 2012 keynote and after getting a chance to play it on the show floor, I have to say it was absolutely worth the wait. Not only was the demo I played adorable, but it also had accomodating controls and a boss battle that was both fun and challenging.
Let me back up a bit first. The Nintendo booth was mobbed at E3 2012. People were swarming it, eager to try every Wii U game possible. One of the busiest demo stations were the ones running Pikmin 3, which meant I wasn’t even able to get close to one until the last day of the show. Then, after a 15-20 minute wait, I was finally able to play. It was worth it.
As the demo began, I was given a choice as to which adventure I wanted to play. I could go through a fruit gathering challenge or a boss battle. Since the boss battle involved strategic use of the new Rock Pikmin, I figured that’s the one I had to try. The next thing I knew, my leader and his small army of Rock Pikmin were in a dark cave. I moved him forward a bit, when everything started shaking and a centipede creature covered in crystal armor tore into the room.
Since the creature was armored, I had to be careful with how I attacked. I first had to run around the cave, pressing B and aiming the Wii remote pointer, to gather up as many Rock and Red Pikmin as I could so my leader had a decent army to work with. Then, I had to start hurling the Rock Pikmin at the centipede’s armor by pointing at it while pressing A. Once armor had been broken off and the creature’s blue body exposed, I could press C to start hurling Red Pikmin at the exposed area to start doing damage. The Red Pikmin would cling on for a while, attacking the beast.
It sounds simple, I know, but it’s more challenging in practice. The centipede creature was constantly moving, and had large pincers on the sides of its mouth. Often, it would do a dash attack and lock its pincers around a group of my Pikmin, keeping them from coming when I called or being directed to attack. Fortunately, the pincers were made of the same kind of armor as the creature’s body so a few well-thrown Rock Pikmin broke them off.
Once the centipede started getting down to about half his health, he started crawling up the sides of the cave and trying to get away. This was actualy a bit of a relief, as it meant I could send my leader character around, whistling to recall all of the Pikmin who had been thrown and were now lounging around the cave without anything to do.
From there, the battle was very easily won by hurling as many Pikmin as possible. In fact, I actually completed the five minute boss battle challenge with two minutes left on the clock!
I’m going to be completely honest with you all right now. Even though the Pikmin 3 demo didn’t show how the Wii U gamepad would work and I was only able to go through one of the two challenges, this was easily the best game I played at E3 2012. I had so much fun with the title and I think it could end up being a system seller.