Nintendo Reviews Rating:
Age 7+
Posted: October 9th, 2003
By: Webmaster-Josh
Pikmin is a very innovative game that takes a new approach on adventure games. Did Shigeru Miyamoto pull off a stellar
game? Read the review!
Sound

The audio in this game is above average. The sound effects are appropriate and signal to certain events. You can hear
sounds from afar, too. Some sound effects such as your damaged health meter get annoying after a while, but that's the
very reason you should get back to your ship to heal yourself. There's a variety of Pikmin sounds, which is good, because
if I heard the same ones over and over, I'd get a headache. There aren't too many sound effects simply because there
aren't enough places to use them, so I didn't take off any points for that.
The music is great. Since you're only in a level for about 15 minutes each day, you don't have to worry about the music
getting tedious. Once again, there aren't many samples, but there aren't places to put them. However, they could have
made different samples for the Challenge mode like remixes of the real score for those levels. Overall, I'm not too
concerned on lowering the score just because of a lack of places to put the audio. It could have benefited from Dolby, but
it's not that big of a deal since this was a game released near the Gamecube's release.
Control

Pretty much everything is fine about the controls. One minor flaw is the camera control. I don't mind the angle, but it's
hard to control the camera at times. Usually it isn't a problem, but when you're fighting enemies, and you don't have too
much time to think, this can create a bad situation. It's good to devise a good angle before you approach the enemy. The
camera is mainly placed the way it is to prevent players from discovering too much or possibly to discover something they
wouldn't otherwise see. Use it to your advantage.
The button controls are otherwise great. The only annoyance is trying to shoot Pikmin. Sometimes the camera tricks you
and you'll be shooting them too far ahead. If you dismiss them, sometimes they'll automatically attack a nearby enemy or
grab an object you don't want them to grab. But ultimately, this just adds to the strategy level, and really shouldn't cause
veteran players too much trouble. Beginners may need some help, though.
The loading is instantaneous because the entire level is loaded at once. It may take 19 Blocks, but it's for a good reason.
The game remembers exactly where you left ship parts and exactly where Pikmin were planted and sprouted, and it does
this for each level. 19 Blocks is for three files and your settings; not a bad trade-off. Overall the control of this game are
above average.
Graphics

Nothing of an extreme coolness about the graphics-it's all stuff we've seen before.
What I like about this game, though, is how the graphics hold up considering the
way we see them. They are very 3D for the most part, and the extra effects of the
night and day sky lighting show up well. You can easily tell what time of day it is,
without looking at the sun meter.
There are flowers and extra things that are scattered about levels; some in places
players can't reach, but they look realistic anyway. The artwork for each level is
amazing! Each place is detailed and feels uniquely original. The graphics aren't
fooling, either. You can usually tell what parts of each level you can and cannot
interact with.
The maps and other displays are helpful and are well-designed so you don't have to
work hard to get your Pikmin where they need to be. Lighting effects are great as I
said above, but in places like The Forest Navel, the graphics really show their
creativity. You'll love to see this game in action.
Replay

This game requires you to complete it within 30 days with 15-20 minutes each day. There are 30 parts to collect, so that
averages to be about one each day. Players should know that five of the parts aren't needed including the final part at the
last stage. Most players should be able to at least get the 25 needed parts, even on their first try. Then they should try
getting all 30. After they've done that, players should try to beat it in less days, now that they know where each part is.
Once you find the three colors of Pikmin, you'll unlock Challenge mode. This will allow you to play visited level for one
day in an attempt to grow many Pikmin. It sounds boring, but it's a lot of fun.
When you get right down to it, though, once you've mastered everything, there isn't much to play for. If you play the
game again, you'll find different enemies in earlier areas, and maybe some you've never seen (Experts should look for the
Smoky Progg). Pikmin should have had a multiplayer mode, and that's why I'm waiting for Pikmin 2. There's a lot to do,
but once you're done, you'll probably get bored of it. Beginners will cherish this game because of the difficulty, but
veterans won't want to keep playing more than three times through.
Design

This is one of the best designed games I've come across in a while. Hands down, this is the most innovative game of 2001
for any platform! The cute look shouldn't fool older gamers; this is a fun game. This is one of those games you probably
don't want a strategy guide because you'll want to discover everything. Nintendo's newest franchise revolves around
locating lost parts in a time limit. The time limit for each day challenges you to plan out your day wisely. It's fun to vary
your days around and see what you can get accomplished.
The three types of Pikmin can be used and in very obscure ways to get parts sometimes, but discovering those ways is half
the fun. You may spend some days battling enemies, or maybe collecting parts and others simply growing more Pikmin.
The fact that enemies come back after a certain amount of days after their defeat warns players to complete levels
quickly. The mix of growing, attacking and finding renders the game design fun with no flaws.
The design is the highest scoring aspect of the game simply because it is unique and original. The rest of the scores didn't
go as well, especially replay because there really isn't much incentive to keep on playing this short game after beating.
There is incentive to buy the sequel though because there will most likely be more levels and replay. For $20, though, this
game isn't half-bad.
Scores
Sound

8.1
Control

8.2
Graphics

8.8
Replay

7.1
Design

9.7
8.4
Final Words

Shigeru Miyamoto had the right idea, but not enough levels to support it, and that's where Pikmin falls on the score. Even
just one more level would be enough to satisfy. I mean, there are plenty of enemies, and I wouldn't mind seeing some of
the same ones in another new level. Some levels are huge, but others small, so you won't find too many enemies in some
levels. The plot is okay, but it works out. I appreciate the fact that the levels are based on Shigeru Miyamoto's gardens,
too. Knowing that makes players look at this game differently. I really enjoyed this game, and I try to look past the fact
that there are some flaws. I recommend this game to any GCN owner, especially because the price is only $20 now!