Over the last week, I’ve been spending a bit of spare time playing Pikmin 3, the newest entry in one of my favourite videogame franchises. (You might have noticed that one of custom headers of Ekostories is currently Pikmin themed) It’s been nine long years since the last game, and I’m pleased to find that this newest title has lost none of the whimsy and charm the series is famous for. The premise is simple but unique: A group of tiny thimble-sized astronauts have crash-landed on a mysterious planet. To carry out their mission and return home, they must enlist the help of indigenous half-plant, half-animal creatures called Pikmin. The player and their Pikmin workers must work together to traverse through jungles, tundra, and gardens to discover food and equipment that will them along in their adventure.
Pikmin 3 bucks the trend of blockbuster style first-person shooters the videogame industry is renowned for by delivering an experience unlike any other game I’ve come across. Its gentle atmosphere, conveyed through long stretches of serenity, is often punctuated by moments of terror where grotesque predators happily devour dozens of my carefully cultivated Pikmin workers. Such are the delights and horrors of this fictitious world.
The “fantastical nature documentary” vibe is augmented by the ability to take photographs. It’s clear that a lot of love has been lavished on the creatures and the environments. Everything looks intensely organic, from the glistening backs of animals on a sodden rainy morning to the gargantuan pieces of carefully rendered fruit strewn about the landscape. I found myself taking a break from taking a break, foregoing the main mission of the game to search for the best spot for a good photo opportunity. Below are a few of my first forays into Pikmin 3 photography:
If you wish to learn more about the Pikmin universe, I encourage you to check out my essay titled An Alien’s Perspective: Pikmin 1& 2. I may get around to writing an Ekostory on this game, once I can break myself away from taking more pictures!
I have a real soft-spot for the first two… this looks lovely!
It’s a very pretty game for sure 🙂 Nothing quite like them out there.
The colors are deep and rich and it sounds like the premise for this game is as well. I wonder why more video games aren’t like this in being for the most part gentle and imaginative? All those first person shooter games must get boring after a while.
Pikmin games always remind me of your creations and musings 🙂
Most publishers who make polished, full-fledged games go to where the revenue potentials are high and the perceived risk is low, and that means first person shooters for the most part because that’s the type of entertainment that sells. I’m not sure if this latest Pikmin title will even make its money back. Bit of a shame really.
The visuals are stunning! Just gorgeous!
It is a splendid game, from it’s macro/micro management RTS styled gameplay to it’s beautiful art style and sumptuous soundtrack a GOTY contender no doubt about that PIKMIN 4 please NINTENDO.
Yeah, I think it definitely is one of my favourite games of the year. Just nothing else remotely like it out there.