February 26, 2024

I only fell in love with Pikmin 4 after the credits rolled

Pikmin always seemed like one of those Nintendo franchises destined to be little more than a historical curiosity, consigned to the same dusty IP warehouse where the company has stuffed the likes of other beloved cult classics like Earthbound and Golden Sun. Yet despite regularly disappointing sales, Pikmin keeps getting second chances. As a fan since the launch of the original game 22 years ago, I couldn’t be happier about that fact, and with Pikmin 4 the series has finally gotten the sequel it truly deserves.

I’m honestly a bit surprised to be typing those words, since for most of Pikmin 4’s early hours I simply liked it – I hadn’t yet fallen in love. The game has a slow start, heavy on tutorials and explanatory dialog, and even once you’ve got full control over the action, it’s not particularly demanding. The action of directing your Pikmin and managing their tasks over the course of each day is engaging all on its own, but there’s not quite enough pressure in the early stages of Pikmin 4 to force you to truly manage your time well and make the most of the game’s systems.

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