Pikmin was the first game in the Pikmin series. It was released on the Nintendo GameCube, on October 26, 2001. Three years later, the sequel called Pikmin 2 was released on April 29, 2004. Nine years later, it received yet another sequel, Pikmin 3, which was released on July 13, 2013, for the Wii U. Since the release of the third installment, a spin-off title has been released called Hey! Pikmin.

Pikmin later got re-released in 2009 for the Wii, as part of the 'New Play Control!' series.


You play the as Captain Olimar, a man of high vocabulary and the only employee of any merit who works at Hocotate Freight. After all the hard work he goes through, Olimar decides to take an interstellar vacation in his personal ship, the S.S. Dolphin. He puts the ship in auto-pilot. With no real place in mind, Olimar relaxes within the comfort of his ship.

Suddenly a meteorite smashes into Olimar's ship, and he is knocked unconscious. Meanwhile, 30 parts of his ship careen towards a seemingly undiscovered planet. Olimar awakes to find his beloved ship in ruins! He must find all 30 (or 25) ship parts with the help of his newfound friends, the Pikmin, in order to get back to his home planet.


Pikmin is a three-dimensional real-time strategy game in which the player is given control of Olimar, who in turn has control over the Pikmin that follow him. The whole point of the game is to find and collect as many of his lost ship parts as possible, up to the maximum of 30 parts, in fewer than the 30 days Olimar has to live, so that he can escape the planet before his life-support system fails. Approximately 17 minutes are spent on its surface each day. As nightfall approaches, the player must gather stray and toiling Pikmin to the player's base or command them so they don't fall victim to the voracious nocturnal predators, such as the Red Bulborb. Some creatures are more fierce, such as the Burrowing Snagret. Some bosses you have the option to encounter, like the Mamuta.

In Pikmin the player will face many obstacles in order to secure the parts required to rebuild Olimar's ship, the S.S. Dolphin. This must be done with care, as many obstacles are hazardous to the Pikmin, such as water, fire ,and explosions. There are also other things that block the players' way, such as walls, bridges ,and gaps. Many different animal species on the planet hinder the progress of the Pikmin working for the player. However, the forces given to the player are limited, as players can only have up to 100 Pikmin out in the field and no more under any circumstances. The rest are stored in the Onions, considered by Olimar to be some sort of motherships for the species. When the game ends, the player's work will set a high score that you can attempt to beat another time.


Action(s) Controller
Gamecube Controller Wii Remote + Nunchuk
Navigating the Menu
Select Menu Item Analog Stick Joystick/D-Pad
Confirm Selection A A
Cancel B B
Move Analog Stick Joystick
Punch A (Without Pikmin) A (Without Pikmin)
Hold Pikmin Hold A Hold A
Throw Pikmin Release A Release A
Select Pikmin Type* N/A B (While Holding Pikmin)
Select Pikmin Phase* N/A Down on D-Pad (While Holding Pikmin)
Whistle B (Hold to increase range) B (Sensor-Controlled)
Direct Pikmin C-Stick Down on D-Pad
Dismiss Pikmin X C
Center Camera L Z
Move Cameraˆ Analog Stick (move lightly) N/A
Change Camera Angle R Left/Right D-Pad
Change Camera Height Z Up D-Pad
Change Camera POV Hold R Hold Left/Right D-Pad
Pause Screen Controls
Show Map/Pause Screen Y Plus (+)
Return to Game B B
Scroll Through Map Analog Stick Joystick
Other Options Left Analog Left D-Pad
Cancel B B
Onion Controls
Access Onion Menu A (under Onion) A (under Onion)
Deposit Pikmin Analog up Joystick up
Withdraw Pikmin Analog down Joystick down
Confirm A A
Cancel B B
Other Controls
Heal Olimar A (in front of Dolphin) A (in front of Dolphin)
View Ship Part Info A (near Ship Part) A (near Ship Part)
* = New Play Control! only
ˆ = Gamecube only


  • A button: The A button is used or a lot of things. First, you can throw a Pikmin with A, as well as pluck any pikmin from the ground. Finally, you can press A while alone to attack, however weak it may be.
  • B button: Whistle. Hold down the B button to increase its range. Any Pikmin caught in the whistle will be under the player's command.
  • Analog Stick: Move. If an idle Pikmin is hit by Olimar, it will join him.
  • C-stick (D-pad button down in the New Play Control! version of Pikmin): Move the Pikmin group currently under control. They will go to a task if they bump into an object, thus leaving the Pikmin group.
  • Y button (+ button in the New Play Control! version of Pikmin): Brings up the map / controls menu. The map is unavailable until after the Whimsical Radar has been retrived from The Forest of Hope, but the controls menu can be seen at any time by moving right with the analog stick.
  • X button (C button in the New Play Control! version of Pikmin): Dismisses all Pikmin currently under the player's command in groups of their colour.
  • L button (Z button in the New Play Control! version of Pikmin):Center the camera behind Olimar.
  • Lightly tap and hold: Move the camera with the analog stick.
  • R button (D-pad left/right in the New Play Control! version of Pikmin): Changes the camera angle. There are 4 different angles: close up, normal, far, and ground angle. close normal and far can be shuffled simply by presing the R button. For ground view, hold the R button.
  • Z button (D-pad up in the New Play Control! version of Pikmin): Switch to a top-down view and then back to an angled view.

New Play Control! exclusive controls

  • B button (Only when holding a Pikmin): Change the color of the Pikmin Olimar is currently holding.
  •  D-pad down (Only when holding a Pikmin): Swap the currently held Pikmin for a leaf, bud or flower Pikmin of the same color as the one currently held.


The overworld, as seen in game.

The Pikmin

Main article: Pikmin family

Pikmin are the plant/animal hybrids that were discovered by Captain Olimar when he crash-landed on the planet. The Pikmin willingly follow his orders and imitate his movements, despite whatever fate may await them. Each species of Pikmin has weaknesses and strengths and all Pikmin must be used in cooperation in order to collect all of the missing ship parts. There are three types of Pikmin encountered in this game:

Red Pikmin

Main article: Red Pikmin

A red Pikmin, with its pointed nose.

Red Pikmin are the first type of Pikmin encountered by Olimar, at The Impact Site. They are used to retrieve the Main Engine, since they are the only Pikmin that players can have at the time. Red Pikmin are resistant to fire and are the strongest of all the Pikmin found in the game. They are also distinguished from other Pikmin because of a pointed nose-like growth, which they presumably use as spikes in battle, giving them a slight edge in combat over Blue and Yellow Pikmin.

Yellow Pikmin

Main article: Yellow Pikmin

A yellow Pikmin, with its memorable pointy ears.

Yellow Pikmin are the second Pikmin discovered by Olimar, in the The Forest of Hope, which is the second accessible area in the game. Yellow Pikmin are the only Pikmin with the ability to carry Bomb Rocks, and have very large sail-like ears—which they use as glider wings—and are extremely light, allowing them to be thrown very high and remain in the air for a slightly longer period of time. Yellow Pikmin are known for their ears, and are much lighter than the other Pikmin. Yellow Pikmin are the only Pikmin with ears.

Blue Pikmin

Main article: Blue Pikmin

A blue Pikmin with its characteristic gills.

Blue Pikmin are the third and last kind of Pikmin found in the game. They are located in The Forest Navel, the third accessible area in the game. Blue Pikmin are the only species of Pikmin that can move around in bodies of water, thanks to their gills. When non-blue Pikmin fall in the water, blue Pikmin will run to them and throw them out of the water, saving their lives. This is popularly known as the "lifeguard" ability.

Mushroom Pikmin

A Mushroom Pikmin. Note the giant mushroom cap.

Mushroom Pikmin are not conventional Pikmin that you travel with and control. Mushroom Pikmin are under the control of a Puffstool. Mushroom Pikmin are once-normal Pikmin that have turned against Olimar and attack him due to the effects of being struck by Puffstool's spores. These rogue Pikmin retain the same abilities (immune to fire, etc) as the color of Pikmin it transformed from. However, the colors and facial features they possessed pre-transformation disappear. Instead, these Pikmin are purple and have tired-looking semicircle-shaped eyes and a small, black mouth similar in shape to that of the Blue Pikmin.

New Play Control!

Main article: New Play Control!

The American New Play Control! cover for Pikmin

Pikmin got a New Play Control! version released in 2008 in Japan and 2009 everywhere else, and features a number of changes to the original game.


  • The game now has widescreen support.
  • A new control scheme allows control of the cursor by pointing at the screen with the Wii controller. Because of that, the player can now call the Pikmin at a greater distance.
  • An updated save system allows the player to restart play from any previous day. This allows the player to fix problems, such as the Libra Glitch.
  • Some sound effects are played by the Wii remote speaker.
  • In the NTSC version, enemy sound effects, 'voices' in particular, are sped up and higher pitched. This is generally thought to be a glitch.
  • Only the "tails" of Pikmin spirits are blue, rather than being completely blue as they are in the Gamecube version.
  • Pikmin no longer automatically attend to tasks while in Captain Olimar's command.
  • Yellow Pikmin holding bomb rocks no longer drop them when whistled to. In addition, they will automatically try to run out of range of a planted bomb-rock's explosion or throw it at an enemy.
  • The Enemy reel is presented differently. The enemy reel plays as usual, but around the edges of the screen, five-petaled flowers are falling, in addition to what looks like snowflakes towards the end of the enemy reel.
  • Pikmin last longer when on fire or drowning.
  • The carrying numbers appear in the same way as in Pikmin 2, which means they show the color of the onion they are carried to.
  • The player can press up or down on the D-pad to cycle through the types of Pikmin they are holding, a feature which was first introduced in the GameCube version of Pikmin 2.
  • During the Bad Ending, Olimar's ship makes different malfunctioning noises.
  • In the Credits; Meteors will occasionally pass the screen in the background.



Pikmin USA Commercial

The U.S. Commercial


Pikmin Commercial (Japan) 1

The Japan commercial.


Pikmin Commercial (Japan) 2

Another Japan Commercial.


Pikmin Commercial (Japan) 3

Another Japan commercial.

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Title screens and Screenshots

Promotional artwork

See also