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Thoughts On: Pikmin Bloom

Recently I downloaded Pikmin Bloom. Do I like it more than Pokemon Go? Yes! Why? Read and find out!

Pikmin Bloom was recently released in a bunch of territories, including the States. I gave it a download despite not being much of a Pokemon Go fan, and have been very pleasantly surprised! There are a few ways that Pikmin Bloom differentiates from Pokemon Go that make me enjoy it more, but they can be summed up in one word: simplicity.
Nerds would argue that Pikmin Bloom doesn’t have enough depth to it. I, absolutely not a nerd, would argue that it has more than enough with the very little it has. PB can be best described as a very fancy pedometer. You take steps to grow Pikmin, then send them out on expeditions to get fruit to feed your Pikmin. Feeding your Pikmin gives you Flower essences, which you can use to plant flowers around your area by walking some more. That’s it! That’s the loop!
There’s no combat in Bloom. No bases to hold onto, no competitive elements whatsoever. You walk. You grow Pikmin. You make your neighborhood look pretty by planting flowers. It’s barely a “game” when you describe it that way, but that lack of complexity is what has made it so engaging to me. Pikmin Bloom exists primarily to encourage you to get walking. At the beginning of the day, the game tells you the weather, and how good it might be for walking. It keeps track of your total steps and shows that of your friends. At the end of the day, the game asks you how good your day was, even letting you make a small entry to talk about it, like a journal. It’s similar to the Activity Log on the 3DS, even congratulating you on beating your Steps record for the week. Hence, “fancy pedometer.”
This is very nice for me personally. This low overhead means that I can engage with it very casually and still make progress in growing my Pikmin Squad. I don’t have to go to specific places, which is great, because I don’t have the time to wander around, and I also live in an area with very few landmarks. Landmarks still exist in the game, but they don’t take up a big chunk of the gameplay loop, and can, as far as I can currently tell, be completely ignored. This lack of “requirement” has lead to me engaging with the game much more frequently than I ever did with Pokemon Go.
It’s kinda weird that Nintendo and Niantic made a game for me, specifically, but I appreciate it! If you found Pokemon Go to be too involved, give Pikmin Bloom a try. It’s laid-back, which is exactly what I enjoy in a mobile game. And hey, maybe if we all play it, Nintendo will finally give us all a Pikmin 4! Right Nintendo?
That's All for Now!
What have you been playing? Let me know @mintmakesthings! You can also subscribe to the Mint’s Café Newsletter (that’s this one!) by signing up below, or check out the blog for more from me about vidja and other stuff!
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SMDFTB, Colorado