Who knew we would get another mainline entry for the Pikmin franchise after nearly a decade since the last main title, a spin-off title, and a mobile game? According to Shigeru Miyamoto, Pikmin 4 has been in development since 2015 and it’s finally out. This may be a start for new faces to explore PNF-404 or returning players to explore more with more graphic detail and a mix of new and nostalgic gameplay. Here’s a non-spoiler review of Pikmin 4 on the Nintendo Switch. 

Story:

Pikmin 4

When you first start the game, you are introduced to a familiar voice. Captain Olimar has once again, crashed into this planet. He tells his tale about his encounter with Pikmin. After saving his shippiece, he sends out an emergency signal for space teams to answer the distress signal. 

But just like typical Pikmin fashion, your team answers and crash lands into PNF-404. 

After making your very own character, your new adventure awaits. Once you’ve introduced your pet; Oatchi, and their abilities to aid your adventure, you get to meet the Pikmin. After your first encounter with the cave system, and saving your team members of the rescue corp. You have multiple missions. 

Your mission is to save the Rescue Corps, collect sparklium and Captain Olimar.

Gameplay:

Pikmin’s gameplay has always been the same since the first entry. You have new and returning gameplay mechanics from previous games, but in order to get those mechanics, there are in-game currencies that you can find from your adventure on PNF-404. 

You have your 6 Pikmin as part of your adventure while introducing 2 new types. The classic Red is resistant to fire. Yellow can be thrown much higher and be electrical resistant, Blue is help you underwater. Purple are the strongest carrying 10 for the number of one Pikmin. White is resistant to poison. Rocks cannot be crushed and smash glass. Flying Pikmin can fly and bring items to your base much quicker with a flying path. New Pikmin that are ice and freeze enemies and bodies of water. Finally, glow Pikmin can help your nightly exploration.  

After the main gameplay tutorial, you locate your home base, and you can freely choose what you want to do for your exploration day. The hub world is organized by characters. You can either choose your next area to explore, upgrade suits for both Oatchi and your character, give Oatchi upgrades to his moves, and do challenges. Throughout the main quest, you’ll find these lost rescuers and are able to unlock them as you go. 

Visuals and Sound

The visuals in this game are really amazing. Especially for a console that sort of lacks graphical textures, the world of PNF-404 can literally be your backyard. It’s that amazing. My breath was taken away from when I first saw the title screen and continued to play the demo. 

How are the sounds in this game? Sounds in this game sound like if you lay down in nature, and just hear the winds blow and whoosh. It’s just like that. The songs will become more intense as battle commences with the wildlife of PNF-404.

Sound producer and music lead Kenta Nagata took over this project to make amazing music and noise for this game. His previous work with Nintendo included games from Mario, Legend of Zelda, Animal Crossing, and a lot more. 

What’s New in Pikmin 4? 

With the game having been in development for over 7 years, fans wanted a bunch of new gameplay and this is what we got: 

New Pikmin – Ice Pikmin and Glow Pikmin are new Pikmin introduced to this game, they are very helpful in different ways, but can make it easy for some players.

Returning Pikmin – Purple and white Pikmin make their story return from Pikmin 2 and rock and flying Pikmin make their return from Pikmin 3

Oatchi – Oatchi is a brand new companion that can be upgradable to withstand many hazards and puzzles and help out with your team.

Hub World – Unlike in previous Pikmin games, your hub is a map, in this game, you have a whole hub world where you can talk to crewmates, and everyone to understand their story. 

Night-time exploration – You can fight night creatures in a PVE tower defense game.

Dandori Battles – Dandori Battles come in 2 and they are scattered throughout the main quest. It’s either a treasure collecting or battle and when you win, you can save that leafling. 

Caves – Caves make their return from Pikmin 2. They make them work since caves don’t go on forever unlike in Pikmin 2. 

Post-game content – Though this isn’t a spoiler review, the post-game content is really fun and adds challenges to work and really think about it. 

These are the initial new game features that were added in Pikmin 4. 

Final Thoughts:

Pikmin 4 brings something new to both new and returning players of the franchise. While some of the critiques of a few control issues, co-op, and a few design choices for gameplay, I was really satisfied with all the content that was added from Pikmin 3 Deluxe. Recommending Pikmin 4 is an immediate yes for first-party Nintendo games. It’s easy to understand for new players and brings a new experience for veterans to explore everything.

Pikmin 4 is out now on Nintendo Switch

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10
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Review Summary

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