Cropped logo from Pikmin 3.
|Platform(s)||Nintendo GameCube, Wii, Wii U|
|Platform of origin||Nintendo GameCube|
|Year of inception||2001|
|First installment||Pikmin (2001)|
|Latest installment||Hey! Pikmin (2017)|
The Pikmin (ピクミン) universe refers to the Super Smash Flash series' collection of stages and properties that hail from Nintendo series of colorful real-time strategy games focusing on the plant-like creatures called Pikmin, created by highly acclaimed Nintendo developer, Shigeru Miyamoto. Pikmin had a little representation in Super Smash Bros. Melee which was limited to only two trophies, but for Super Smash Bros. Brawl, the series got increased with the addition of Captain Olimar as playable character, and a vs. mode stage, among other stuff. Give its popularity and representation in the Super Smash Bros. series, the Pikmin franchise made its way into the Super Smash Flash series as well.
Prior to the launch of the Nintendo GameCube, Shigeru Miyamoto promoted the system's processing power by releasing a tech demo titled "Super Mario 128" at Nintendo's Space World trade show in August 2000, which demonstrated rapid generation techniques in order to display 128 separate Mario models on screen at once. Meanwhile, Miyamoto and his development team worked on an original project, working title "Adam and Eve", that was planned to be a game where one could watch the development and proliferation of two starting characters. Eventually, this idea was found to be far too lacking in interactivity for the player and was scrapped. But then, a completely new aesthetic was brought in and incorporated into a marriage between some of the concepts of Adam and Eve and the technicalities demonstrated by Super Mario 128. The now-familiar Pikmin series' characters, setting, and real-time-strategy gameplay style were introduced to the Nintendo brand with the December 2001 release of Pikmin as a near-launch title for the GameCube. (Incidentally, the name "Pikmin" was derived from Miyamoto's sheepdog, Pikku).
Pikmin received positive reception, both for its charming aesthetics and characters and for its unique spin on real-time strategy, and quickly earned a devoted fanbase. However, Japanese sales were not enthusiastic after the first week. In an attempt to stimulate sales, the virtual band Strawberry Flower was hired to write and perform an image song featured in Japanese commercials for the game. Ironically, the single, "Ai no Uta" (Song of Love), became incredibly popular and actually outsold the game it advertised, and it most certainly did its part to surge weekly sales of the game itself. This likely helped secure Pikmin's future status as an established Nintendo franchise, and the first sequel, Pikmin 2, was released in August 2004 for the GameCube. It garnered near-universal acclaim from gaming publications and was noted to be a marked improvement over the original in many important regards, and often makes appearances near the top of published lists of the best GameCube games released over the system's lifespan. Despite what had already become a glowing track record for the franchise and its official featuring in 2008's Super Smash Bros. Brawl, though, Pikmin would experience a nine-year hiatus that would only end with the August 2013 release of the third game, Pikmin 3, for the Wii U.
The Pikmin games are set on an unknown planet that has been stated by Miyamoto to represent Earth after the extinction of the human race. The player takes control of a visiting astronaut from a tiny, space-faring species, most famously Captain Olimar, as he explores the littered wilderness, takes command over armies of native plant-like species he dubs Pikmin, and has them secure and bring back important objects to his home base. A cornucopia of hostile wildlife and environmental hazards does not make things easy for him or his followers; oftentimes, he must willingly sacrifice his minions by hurling them at large enemies so that they whittle the enemies' health down, and must rely on the harvesting of enemy carcasses (and naturally-occurring pellets) to resow his Pikmin and pluck them up to replenish his standing forces. The different colors of Pikmin lend themselves to different on-the-spot battle strategies, and are also important to solving puzzles and opening up important pathways in the environment itself.
In the original game, Captain Olimar, from the planet Hocotate, is taking a vacation on his rocket, the S.S. Dolphin, in outer space when a comet hits his rocket and causes him to crash-land onto the Distant Planet. Olimar cannot breathe the environment's oxygen and has only thirty days worth of life support remaining, and in that time he must befriend and take command of the native Pikmin to help him gather all the broken-off pieces of his Rocket so that he may make a return flight back home. Immediately upon his return home in the second game, he finds that the company he works for, Hocotate Freight, is in severe debt, so the company president sends Olimar and his co-worker Louie to scavenge valuable goods from the Distant Planet. In Pikmin 3, another spacefaring race is introduced, and three new main characters - Alph, Brittany and Charlie - arrive at the Distant Planet and enlist the aid of the Pikmin to help them harvest fruit seeds to save their starving homeworld, Koppai.
In the Super Smash Flash series
In Super Smash Flash 2
After a well-received introduction in Super Smash Bros. Brawl, the Pikmin series found its way into Super Smash Flash 2, though there was not any sight for the Pikmin series in the original Super Smash Flash at all. Currently, the franchise is only recognizable by a stage, directly coming from Brawl.
- Distant Planet: Based off the Forest of Hope and the Awakening Woods from Pikmin and Pikmin 2 respectively. Technically, all the fighters will be under an inch tall when they are fighting on this stage. The stage has a slope on the left hand side, three leaves in the center which act as platforms, and another larger platform beneath the leaves, which is bouncy. It occasionally rains, and the slope on the left hand side becomes a hazard as water gushes down it. Characters can also pick up pellets that fall from Pellet Posies and throw them into Onions that appear on the stage to get items.