Pikmin 2 Joins The Gold Club

Pikmin 2 was released here on Friday, and being an enormous fan of anything vaguely resembling Lemmings, I bought a copy. Actually, the word ‘bought’ oversimplifies the transaction somewhat… it went more like this:

SPOTTY TEENAGE SALES ASSISTANT1: “Would you like to buy that? It’s $100.”
(STSA1 takes the video game, and swipes it to disarm the security tag thingy.)
ME: (offering STSA1 a pair of fifties) “Here you go.”
STSA1: “Oh, I can’t serve you right now… the register is occupied.”
(At this juncture I wait half an hour while a second teenager — STSA2 — tries to stuff a giant Warcraft Battle Chest into a teeny bag clearly intended for PSX games. Eventually he goes for a larger bag and all is well.)
STSA2: “Can I help you?”
ME: (offering STSA2 the pair of fifties) “I’d like to buy Pikmin 2. The other guy has already swiped it. Here’s money.”
STSA2: “You’re a gold club member, right?”
ME: “Nope.”
STSA2: “Let me tell you about our great gold club!”
ME: “No thanks. I just want to buy the game.”
STSA2: “Okay, sure. What’s your name and phone number?”
ME: “I AM WILLING TO PAY YOU ONE HUNDRED DOLLARS FOR A 3 INCH PLASTIC DISC WITH A GAME ABOUT CARROTS ON IT! TAKE THE FUCKING MONEY!”

Anyway, I eventually got the game home and took a look at it. The manual is comphrensive (as one would expect from a first party Nintendo game), and the artwork is all photographs of modelling clay scenes (including one of the various pikmin walking across a rusty piece of barbed wire, and a great one of a wonky clay controller on the which-button-does-what page).

When you first fire up the game, you’re greeted by a little prompt that asks you whether your TV can can handle 60Hz or whether you’d like to use the default 50Hz (oddly, the game doesn’t remember your choice, and asks you every time at startup). After that, you’re through to the main menu, where you can play through the story mode, the challenge mode (when unlocked), or the 2P split screen ‘capture the marble‘ mode. There’s also an options screen where, in addition to the usual guff, you can choose between sharp high-contrast graphics or washed-out Ico style graphics (which look very cool indeed).

The main game plays as per the original Pikmin, i.e. like the three-dimensional bastard child of Lemmings and Command & Conquer. There are a few notable differences, however, and these are chiefly to do with the game’s multitasking aspect. Firstly, you are given a extra little guy to control (name of Louie, perhaps in a nod to Luigi), and secondly, the 30-day time limit has been eliminated from the game. While these seem like good things initially, I am concerned that, taken together, they unbalance the game. In the original Pikmin, the time limit encouraged multitasking; if you didn’t collect multiple pieces in a single day, you had no hope of getting all the pieces before your time ran out. This meant that it wasn’t enough to merely complete a level — you had to complete the level using an optimal solution. Anyway, I haven’t played a huge amount of Pikmin 2 yet, so I’m hopeful that later levels will use the daylight timer to encourage more frantic multitasking.

Other new additions include a hand-holding tutorial (annoying, but exhaustive), and lots of nifty underground cave levels. The cave levels (thus far) are quite unlike the spacious watery caves of the original, and are cramped multi-level dungeons evocative of Baldur’s Gate: Dark Alliance as much as anything. The cool thing about the caves is that they contain lots of weird new species of flora and fauna. Purple and white pikmin can be obtained via colour-changing candypop flowers (which now wilt after you’ve changed five pikmin), berries can be harvested to make the pikmin equivalents of cocaine and tear gas, and exciting new monsters can beat the tar out of you. It’s all good downstairs, except that the time pressure is slackened ever further by the daylight timer pausing while you go spelunking.

So, first impressions versus the orginal: there’s more of it, it looks better, and it’s not as hard. If you’re a westerner with a Game Cube it’s not like you have a huge variety of games to choose from anyway, so purchasing Pikmin 2 is pretty much mandatory. While doing so, you may wish to join our great gold club.

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16 Comments


  1. Damian Friston

    19 November 2004 at 7.43 am

    hello, as you can see my name is Damian and i am a massive fan of pikmin. I think its a great idea having a pikmin club. But i was wondering because i read that there was a golden ball in perplexing pool that you get to make a golden flower to get golden pikmin. is that true?

    Reply

  2. sbszine

    19 November 2004 at 2.26 pm

    I haven’t come across a golden flower yet, but I’ll let you know if I spot one. i couldn’t find anything about ti on the web so it’s probably just a rumour.

    Reply

  3. PimpDaddy OG StackMoney

    29 November 2004 at 4.58 pm

    FUCK YEAH BEEE-OTCH!!
    PIKMIN 2 BE DA SHIZNIT!!! COME AND JOIN MY PIKMIN CLUB, PUNKS!! BUT MY PIKMIN CLUB HAS RULEZ…RULE NUMBER 1 OF PIKMIN CLUB: IF YOU DON’T JOIN THE CLUB, I RIDE MY BIKE TO YOUR HOUSE AND CLUB YOUR FAT ASS…BEEE-OTCH!! AND LOOK HERE AND LISTEN: MY STEP-DAD SAID PIKMIN 2 LOOKED GAY AND HE THEN CAUGHT A CRITICAL BEATDOWN (IN DA FACE) FROM ME WITH A BUSTED BROOMSTICK AND A BRICK, SO YOU SHOULD KNOW THAT I AM TAKING THIS SHIT WAY SERIOUSLY. ONCE MORE FOR THE MOTHERFUCKERS IN THE CHEAP SEATS: PIKMIN 2 BE DA BOMB!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    PEACE OUT AND AUDI FIVE THOUSAND, Y’ALL!!!!

    Reply

  4. Anonymous Coward calling itself Josh McGoldrick

    30 November 2004 at 9.34 am

    I’m sorry to say but I really doubt they would put a golden flower for golden pikmin in the second game, If they are planning to make gold pikmin it will be in a future pikmin game(if there is going to be one..I hope) P.S I love the fact of having a pikmin club..Pikmin rules!!!!

    Reply

  5. Anonymous Coward calling itself Tom Woodward

    30 November 2004 at 9.43 am

    I think pikmin is the grandest game of all but i do say that I should be the best nintendo fan around I have a tea party every week to celebrate my gamecube

    Reply

  6. Anonymous Coward calling itself Jake Adams-Willie

    1 December 2004 at 1.42 am

    Hello im jake…pikmin is my fav game….i hav a dildo…weeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee

    Reply

  7. Anonymous Coward calling itself Josh McGoldrick

    1 December 2004 at 1.45 am

    OI! I AM NOT AN ANONYMOUS COWARD SO CHANGE IT!!! U..POO HEAD!!!!!!!

    Reply

  8. Damian Friston

    1 December 2004 at 4.56 am

    this site is getting some strange letters apart from pimpdaddy and josh, who ever they are anyway but for those of you who didn’t know, there is such a thing as louies dark secret, complete everything on challenge mode so the flowers are pink and you can see it at the starting menu. PS anyone who reads this please add me to your contacts list

    Reply

  9. sbszine

    13 December 2004 at 11.41 am

    Well, I’ve cleared Perplexing Pool now, and there were no gold pikmin to be found anywhere. However, I did find something interesting in the Submerged Castle (the underwater cave in the top right corner of the map, just past the two lobsters). In the cave are bulbmin, which are a cross between bulborbs (the read and yellow snail thingies) and pikmin. They look like tiny bulborbs with a leaf on them, and you can sprout them into flower bulbmin with nectar. They have the properties of both yellow and red pikmin, so they’re immune to fire and electricity and are good fighters. But you can’t take them with you out of the cave, so you should use them to battle the final boss (the waterwraith). So yah, no gold pikmin, but I think the bulbmin are more interesting!

    Reply

  10. Ido

    11 May 2005 at 9.26 am

    Pikmin 2 is the best game in all the land. My favorite colors are the new ones: White and Purple. P.S. hey creators, can you make golde and silver plush dolls, i’ll buy them all… Besides, i already got ALL the other colored dolls… PIKMIN RULE!!!

    Reply

  11. Piker

    20 October 2005 at 10.38 am

    I can think of 4 more types of pikmin. Why can they all ask for are help in thinking of new type of PIKMIN. O yah PIKMIN IS THE BBBEEESSSTTT!!!

    Reply

  12. brady is my real name

    17 December 2005 at 5.30 am

    no i like pikmin more than any of you

    Reply

  13. jake

    8 February 2006 at 11.46 pm

    pikmin ruuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuules by the way u suck PimpDaddy OG StackMoney

    Reply

  14. mr.pikmin

    28 March 2007 at 10.09 am

    i love pikmin 2 more than any of u

    Reply

  15. mr.pikmin

    29 March 2007 at 12.42 pm

    ive been at wistful wild for a while now how do u get 100 purple pikmin to lift the wieght tresure thingy its so….. hard i have 67 purple pikmin right now get back to me if u can! plzz

    Reply

  16. Damian Friston

    6 February 2012 at 5.41 am

    Sup Lads. Big shout out to my pikmin friends Derek and Kevin. Pikmin 3 soon yay and yay. Thanks to everyone in this pikmin club for being here.

    Reply

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