A group of dedicated Pikmin fans managed to reconstruct some of the content cut from Pikmin 3. It follows a number of passionate moves the fandom has made in recent months, including a popular ad campaign for Pikmin 4.
Pikmin 3 is widely considered the best of the growing franchise, having been acclaimed for its visuals, level design, the new types of Pikmin introduced, and the evolved gameplay style, although some criticism was directed towards its abrupt conclusion and lack of the iconic caves of the previous two entries. Still, while it didn’t stop the community from anticipating its next sequel, it also didn’t stop them from reminiscing about Pikmin 3 (as well as its Deluxe version) in the weeks leading up to Pikmin 4’s release.
It’s not uncommon for video games, no matter how complete or critically acclaimed, to have some scrapped content, including other Pikmin games. In the case of Pikmin 3, in the original E3 2012 announcement, there was a location originally intended to be the game’s sixth main stage and true ending. It features a group of captains and Pikmin traveling along a river and throwing themselves to destroy a pillar obstacle in order to cross. No setpiece was present in the official game, but recently, a group of fans managed to recreate the area, which was shown in a new YouTube documentary uploaded by VantageEmblem.
In the sixty-plus minute video, it is explained that this recreation took several months to perfect and not much data was unearthed to work with. Aside from the original E3 2012 reveal, fans could only find a few unused path maps and a few discarded enemy sprites from Pikmin 3 Deluxe. Still, the finished recreation shown in the video is worthy of praise. The narrator speculates that the level may have been worked on early in development, before all of the game’s mechanics were resolved, and was scrapped for not having something to suit all of the core mechanics.
Regardless of the developers’ true intentions, it’s always a shame to discover that someone’s favorite game has some content that didn’t make it into final release. Thankfully, due to increased transparency from game developers in recent years, it’s often much easier to know why this content was cut, and thanks to the vastly expanded modding community, fans can more easily recreate these concepts should the developers decide not to, as they’ve done here.
Pikmin 3 Deluxe is available for Nintendo Switch.