Pikmin 3 has four different control schemes
posted on 05.17.13 at 11:13 AM EDT by (@salromano)
New screenshots and gameplay details shared.

Nintendo shared new details on Pikmin 3 during today’s Nintendo Direct broadcast.

In the upcoming Wii U game, instead of Olimar, who was the main character in previous Pikmin games, there are three new main characters, named Alph, Brittany, and the captain Charlie. They’re from the planet Koppai, which is facing its doomsday due to a lack of food. So the three set out in search of food that can be returned to their planet.

But an accident results in them crash-landing on the planet of the Pikmin. With their help, the three begin their exploration and mission to collect fruit that can act as their new food source while exploring the planet, with the goal of bringing the seeds back to their home.

As the explorers discover from early research, the planet is home to various fruits much larger than normal. But using the Pikmin, they can carry the fruit back to their spaceship. By extracting the seeds, fruit can be converted to juice and act as food for player characters as they explore the planet. If they don’t have enough food, players cannot continue exploring. So you must use the limited time of each day to explore for fruit. Nighttime on the planet is dangerous, so you can only explore from dawn until dusk.

During your exploration, it is important to use the different color Pikmin’s skills. Players can divide activities among the different characters and explore separate areas with different groups of Pikmin in order to better progress their exploration. This allows you to complete tasks in a shorter period of time.

If you make a mistake while you play, you can replay or revert to an earlier section of the game. In the first game, the player had to start over again and again to find out the most efficient way to complete the exploration of the planet in a limited time. But in Pikmin 3, there is no major limitation in terms of days, so it is more accessible for those who’ve not played previous Pikmin games.

In Pikmin 3, the Wii U GamePad becomes an information terminal called the “KopPad.” It will show the area you’ve currently explored on the map. You’re able to see where your Pikmin and player characters are located. By scrolling the screen with your finger, you can see the details of each area on the TV screen. If you scroll the map and select while selecting one of the player characters, you can move them to a specific location automatically. At the end of the day, you can see a replay of the entire day, fast forwarding and rewinding gameplay footage to get ready for the next day.

Finally, Nintendo details on Pikmin 3‘s controls. The game has four play methods:

  • Play with the Wii U GamePad or Pro Controller in combination with the TV.
  • Play off-TV on the GamePad.
  • Play with the Wii controller in combination with the TV.
  • Play with the Wii controller using the GamePad as a monitor.

Pikmin 3 is due out for Wii U on August 4 in North America and July 26 in Europe.

See some new gameplay footage below, and some new screenshots at the gallery.