Note: iOS 9 + Facebook users w/ trouble scrolling: #super sorry# we hope to fix it asap. In the meantime Chrome Mobile is a reach around
hot  /  reviews  /  videos  /  cblogs  /  qposts

E for Effort: One million tiny screams

1:00 PM on 04.17.2010 // Corduroy Turtle

[Editor's Note: We're not just a (rad) news site -- we also publish opinions/editorials from our community & employees like this one, though be aware that it may not jive with the opinions of Destructoid as a whole, or how our moms raised us. Want to post your own article in response? Publish it now on our community blogs.]

Every single aspect of the Pikmin franchise is nothing short of magical. From the concept to the characters, this game just oozes with charm and wonder -- The types of things usually reserved for Pixar movies and classic children's books. It's a shame it's also oozing with something else: RTS gameplay.

Allow me to set the scene for you. It's late 2001 and I'm heading home from a local retailer with shiny new copies of Super Smash Bros Melee and a strange game called Pikmin. Now, I'll admit, I didn't really research that second purchase. I originally went to the store with the sole intent of buying a copy of Smash Bros. I guess I just got caught up in the excitement and bought Pikmin as well. I knew a few things about it. I knew it came from the genius mind of Shigeru Miyamoto and I knew it was a brand new Nintendo franchise. Two things that, when combined, had lead to some of the greatest games in history.

When I got around to putting in the Pikmin disc, I was PUMPED! It was still early in the GameCube's lifespan and every game I was playing was making my jaw drop. From the weather effects in Wave Race: Blue Storm, to the shear amount of action on the screen in Super Smash Bros Melee, everything leading up to this point was keeping my expectations unreasonably high. Pikmin met those expectations and then some.

The graphics were (and still are) simply beautiful. Its nearly photorealistic backgrounds were complimented by these cute little creatures that wanted nothing but to follow my commands. They would run to me at the sound of my whistle and instinctively carry important items back to my wrecked ship. It was like I was teleported back to when I was six-years-old; squatting down in the backyard to peek between some blades of grass hoping to catch a glimpse of the tiny ecosystem beneath my feet. It was a unique feeling that no other game since has been able to capture.

Seeing as I hadn't played an RTS until this point, I was ignorant to the amount of strategy involved. I'm sure the infinitely more tech-savvy kids at school (already years into their StarCraft careers) would have laughed at some of my stupid mistakes. I drowned countless Pikmin. I led them to their inevitable deaths at the mercy of some evil lady bug things. They were only following my misguided commands, completely innocent and pure. I watched, in horror, as they each let out a tiny scream before falling limp. Watching all those little souls float up and disappear in unison was not only depressing, it was frustrating as hell! I worked hard to bring those miniature soldiers into this world. I had to spend precious minutes of each limited day harvesting numbered pellets which led to seed production which led to sprouts which led to lots of plucking which led to casualties.

Too many times I would gather my army of 100 Pikmin strong and head out on a mission confident of my success only to come running back to my ship moments later with whatever stragglers were left. I'm surprised they still followed me back after watching the atrocities I had committed.

I wasn't totally hopeless, thankfully, and I did eventually begin to understand how the game worked. I managed to get through the first couple of environments but sadly not much further than that. I'm usually stubborn enough to stick with a game until I can finish it. Not this time. I finally conceded that this type of game just wasn't fun for me. I was never going to see Captain Olimar rebuild his ship and fly back to his home planet safely. He would never tell his grandchildren about the strange world he crash landed on. How these strange plant creatures came to his aid and helped him battle giant insect-like monsters. He would just disappear into my pile of games and his quest would go unfinished.

That is, until Pikmin 2.

Apparently, Captain Olimar was able to find a way home without my help. Good for him! Knowing that he was safe allowed me to shed all the guilt I was holding onto since I left him stranded years ago.

Needless to say, I bought the sequel too. The series is just too alluring for me to pass up. My adventures weren't any more successful than the first time around although I did appreciate the many improvements Nintendo made. It's still a favorite of mine even if I commit Pikmin-genocide every time I play it. I bought the Wii remake as well, but I chose to leave it in the shrink wrap. It's better that way.

I know I'll be picking up Pikmin 3 whenever it is finally released and I'm really looking forward to jumping back into that magical world. Unfortunately, I doubt Olimar feels the same way.

This promoted blog was written for our April Monthly Musing assignment, "E For Effort." You too could get promoted if you write something about games you hate but respect over on the Community Blogs.

Corduroy Turtle,
 Follow Blog + disclosure

This blog submitted to our editor via our Community Blogs, and then it made it to the home page! You can follow community members and vote up their blogs - support each other so we can promote a more diverse and deep content mix on our home page.

 Setup email comments

Unsavory comments? Please report harassment, spam, and hate speech to our community fisters, and flag the user (we will ban users dishing bad karma). Can't see comments? Apps like Avast or browser extensions can cause it. You can fix it by adding * to your whitelists.

Status updates from C-bloggers

Jed Whitaker avatarJed Whitaker
No comment.
Parismio avatarParismio
Omg i love the internet
Mike Martin avatarMike Martin
Iron Paladin avatarIron Paladin
Jed Whitaker avatarJed Whitaker
I can't wait to mute Niero. #NoRules #ThePurge
Joe Parlock avatarJoe Parlock
I spent all last night playing Day of Defeat: Source. If only Valve gave it even half the attention it did to TF2 or CS:S...
BaronVonSnakPak avatarBaronVonSnakPak
Nearing Platinum status.
CoilWhine avatarCoilWhine
Parismio avatarParismio
Sheesh i played metal gear rising before and Platinum ruined the franchise.
Fuzunga avatarFuzunga
Toonami is running a poll right now at [url][/url] where one of the questions is which show you'd want un-cancelled. Oh, Teen Titans is included? That's curious...
SlyTAdvantage avatarSlyTAdvantage
"The Ravagers dropped the giant insects and waited for them to evolve ... it's clear. This is their plan from the start" -EDF 4.1 scientist So dragons are evolved forms of ants, spiders and/or wasps ....... what?
Ckarasu avatarCkarasu
Every time I hear "I don't understand why people like _____ game", I get annoyed. Of course you understand, if you've listened to what those people were saying. You just don't agree, and that's A-OK. I HATE Twilight, but I understand why people like it.
RadicalYoseph avatarRadicalYoseph
Just tried playing the first Bayonetta game... it was really bad. Honestly I don't understand why Platinum games are so well regarded. None of them are really worthwhile.
StriderHoang avatarStriderHoang
The first person I block is the person who talks shit about Platinum
Torchman avatarTorchman
Even though your waifus are shit
Darth Wachen avatarDarth Wachen
Finally, a blog that I can call my own, I feel accomplished somehow.
Nekrosys avatarNekrosys
Gonna be honest; this really made my day.
Rico the Penguin avatarRico the Penguin
I doubt I'll use it much but I'm totally fine with a block/ignore feature. Everyone has a right to speak, but I don't think anyone has a right to be heard. If this place played country music I'd want a mute button, basically :p.
Sir Shenanigans avatarSir Shenanigans
Mall haul today (plus I split a BEAUTIFUL Star Wars Slave I with my brother). Any thoughts on Haze? Wanted to play it back when it came out and I had no PS3. For a dollar you can't go wrong!
Dreamweaver avatarDreamweaver
I'm not gonna lie, I don't feel "good" about the upcoming "ignore" feature. Maybe it's just me, but I don't like the idea that people can mute other people because they don't agree with them. Spammers and trolls, sure, but not regular community members.
more quickposts



Invert site colors

  Dark Theme
  Light Theme

Destructoid means family.
Living the dream, since 2006

Pssst. konami code + enter

modernmethod logo

Back to Top

We follow moms on   Facebook  and   Twitter
  Light Theme      Dark Theme
Pssst. Konami Code + Enter!
You may remix stuff our site under creative commons w/@
- Destructoid means family. Living the dream, since 2006 -