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Headscratchers / Pikmin

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  • I have concerns about Louie's grandma/auntie. Did she mistreat Louie or something? It's said that she always made Louie play outside with bugs when he was little, making me assume she didn't actually spend time with him herself. There's also the fact that she always made Louie finish everything on his plate, even if he was too full, making him the Big Eater he is today. Eventually all you get is letters from Louie's grandma/auntie sending preserved bug foods. Not preserved bugs. Bug food. Did she even feed him real food she made him finish eating? Sure, it sounds funny, but still, it makes me wonder...
    • Maybe it's actually cooked bugs.
    • It's not necessarily "mistreating" him. Making him play outside could just be her getting him to play outside so he could get exercise and fresh air, and making him clean his plate goes along with the old idea of parents not wanting their kids to waste food. As for the "bug food"... it could be that he just likes eating it, and she's sending it because he likes it.
  • The creatures. Since it's pretty much confirmed Pikmin and Pikmin 2 take place on Earth, it makes me wonder about the creatures. What the hell happened?! There's snakes with bird heads, caterpillars that spit rocks, strange Bulborb creatures classified as Grub-Dogs, creatures that resemble loaves of bread, freaky spiders, a strange fish like creature with a gun, the goddamn Waterwraith, and above all, Pikmin! How did these creatures come to be...? I know evolution would seemingly be a logical answer, but it doesn't seem to be the thing for most of these creatures...
    • Nuclear apocalypse, maybe?
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    • I'm of the camp that Olimar is human-sized, but a nuclear incident enlarged humans to about 100 feet. Their new civilization crumbled and humans went extinct on their own while the local irradiated insects thrived.
    • So somehow radiation made all the animals, grasses, flowers, trees, and even artificial items regarded as treasures like shoes and bottle caps 100 times larger as well? That's well beyond I Love Nuclear Power...
      • Additionally, the game manual for Pikmin 1 contains a chart that indicates that Olimar is only one inch tall.
    • Personally I like the idea that humans didn't simply die out, but developed scientifically until they were able to make these creatures before leaving the planet for some reason. Maybe even eventually becoming the two species the main characters are descended from. It would certainly explain why the Pikmin have complete loyalty to the vaguely human-shaped main characters on sight.
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  • Is there a Bulborb hive with Empress Bulblax as its Hive Queen? Olimar mentions a "bee or ant like social structure" and she obviously is based on a termite queen, but it's strange that no other Bulborbs are seen on the same sublevels as her, perhaps feeding her or caring for her young. Instead, she's all alone in her cave, she doesn't eat Pikmin, and births lots of larvae that she mostly crushes to death accidentally. Doesn't she have any worker Bulborbs to serve her?
  • What exactly is the difference between "Bulborb", "Bulbear", and "Bulblax"? They're all members of the same family, but the Empress Bulblax gives birth to Bulborb Larvae, and the Fiery Bublblax is just as big as a Bulborb and not really Emperor Bulblax's size. As for the Bulbear, its only distinction is that its smaller variant is really its babies and not just a Breadbug mimic, but otherwise is like the other Bulborbs?
    • The Bulbear is distinct for branching off from the standard evolution chain and developing a different mouth, which allows it to eat more prey at once. Additionally, it's more diurnal than Bulborbs. Meanwhile Bulblaxes appear to be very closely related to Bulborbs, but the main difference I see is that Bulblax is an elite branch of the Bulborb line, home to one that's literally on fire as well as the monarchs.
  • In the ending to Pikmin 2, what happened to the Purple and White Pikmin? Their only home up to this point was the ship, but it had taken off to Hocotate. And, seeing as the Distant Planet's atmosphere is deadly to Olimar, Hocotate's atmosphere might be deadly to the Pikmin unless they — or at least the cave-grown types — have some unstated resistance to it. What really raises the question is the "first" ending when you only pay off the debt and do not get all the treasures: the ship returns to Hocotate, goes back to the planet, but the Purples and Whites are still inside the ship. Does this mean that for both endings, Olimar brought two types of Pikmin to his homeworld twice?
    • If you watch the 17/5/2013 footage for Pikmin 3, what looks like a new type of Onion is hanging from a plant, the player has to grab it with the Pikmin, they can store multiple types of Pikmin at once, rather then just one type.. Whether these Onions evolved from the ones in previous games or are a completely new type of Onion isn't known but I suspect they adapt themselves to whatever Pikmin type gets inside it. Thus, White and Purple Pikmin likely were able to hole up inside these new Onions. Since Blue, Red and Yellow Onions aren't able/willing to store Purple and White Pikmin the only alternative is that they were eaten. The new Onion type is literally the only way to store these types of Pikmin.
    • Also, at one point you can see Grey Pellets being carried by Rock Pikmin, meaning they really were being eaten by the Medusal Slurker. It's likely that these new Onions generate a number of Pikmin based on the colour of the Pellet instead of whichever Onion the pellet enters. The real question then is "what happens if they carry a dead enemy back to the Onion?"
  • Why is the Mamuta a Gentle Giant, but its younger form, the Smokey Progg, is a downright Eldritch Abomination? I mean, you would think that creatures would get more agressive, not less.
    • The Smokey Progg is believed to be Malformed, and if you look at it, it's practically decaying as you fight it, so it could be more aggressiveness towards what it perceives as a threat for prematurely hatching it.
    • The Mamuta is not gentle, lacks the ability to kill Pikmin. It still buries them against their wishes and attacks the captains for no other reason than noticing them. Plus larval forms tend to have different diets than the adults. Why would an adult bury Pikmin and the Larva uproot them?
    • Fridge Brilliance: The parent Mamuta plants the Pikmin and grows them into leaves because it has grown to prepare food for it's newborn baby when it hatches, which is why the Smokey Progg can uproot them: to eat!
      • Then why the goddamn supertoxin that's deadlier than any other toxin in all of the three games? Where does that come from? And why does the Progg look almost immaterial and definitely nothing like the Mamuta?
      • "Thought to be a malformed larval Mamuta"-Captain Olimar, Enemy Reel, emphasis added later. We can assume the toxin (which is not necessarily deadlier than any other toxin, since we don't have White Pikmin) and possibly some of the Eldritch Abomination traits can be traced back to that word.
    • Considering that the Smokey Progg is only fought when you break it out of its egg, it's also entirely possible that Olimar's actions caused it to hatch prematurely, and that a Mamuta larva that is allowed to develop and hatch naturally would not show the same traits as the Progg.
  • In the promotional media for Pikmin 1, the Smokey Progg was often refered to as the 'God/Lord of Pikmin' (forget which exactly). My question... Why? I mean, I could understand the Mamuta sense they flower Pikmin willingly, but other than the fact that it's theoryed to be a malformed Mamuta larva and can uproot Pikmin with a roar, there's nothing in-game that really suggest it has any special connection to the Pikmin.
    • According to the wiki for Pikmin, it's the Mamuta itself that is referred to as the "God of Pikmin" by the Prima guide. God in this case being more along the lines of Protector. Considering that it plants pikmin and nothing seems to bother them when they are still in the ground. It also refers to Smoky Progg as the Lord. Why the latter is referred to as a Lord could be due to its roar resembling how a king would tell it's subjects to rise (in this case out of the ground).
  • While it is a part of the gameplay that the creatures instinctively go after and eat your Pikmin, it doesn't make a lot of sense that something as big as a snagret would go after your tiny Pikmin when there are other enemies that would make a better meal. Why have a single tiny Pikmin when there's a fat juicy Dwarf Bulborb?
    • Bulborbs can bite back, and Pikmin until Olimar's arrival were largely helpless. Additionally, you might be approaching the Snagret with a large group of Pikmin that collectively equals more food than a Bulborb.
    • Alternatively, the same reason whales eat krill, which are like a thousand times smaller than them.
  • Why is Olimar so willing to return to the Pikmin homeworld in Pikmin 2? He went through all of the first game horrified by the deaths he was causing by being there. Sure, he kept at it for the sake of survival, but it doesn't make much sense for him to actively go back there and cause even more death, all for the sake of his company. Surely an experienced space pilot of Olimar's resolve and intelligence could find another job? And even if he is so determined to keep Hocotate Freight afloat, why doesn't he show any signs of sadness or regret over what he continues to do to the planet's creatures in any of Pikmin 2?
    • Olimar might have actually wanted to help President. Remember the black hole loan sharks?
    • Olimar's ship got repossessed to help pay off the debt. He could be going back just so he can make enough money to buy his ship back. That's even his motivation for being on the planet again in Pikmin 3.
  • Why do enemies give Pokos in Pikmin 2, if not just for something that happens when you take them to the ship? If the Hocotatians would pay 15 Pokos for an Emperor Bulblax to put in their living room, they've got problems.
    • One can sell them for food. With Louie's recipes, they could be edible.
    • There's also the possiblity that scientist/biologiest would want to study these strange creatures from a realitively new planet never heard of before. Olimar does mention in a few of his notes on the creatures in Pikmin 2 that several scientist have been studying and dissecting the creatures on the planet.
  • What about the Pokos? The Hocotatian public obviously purchases them, but how do the items get to Hocotate? I'm assuming the Pokos aren't actually with Olimar and Louie, just sent as numeric data to the ship while the real money goes to Hocotate Freight, but does the ship have some sort of transporting mechanism to send the items and enemies over? It can fit very large enemies in it...
    • The money hasn't actually been collected yet. The ship is calculating theoretical amounts of money it can make from each treasure, and in the case of beast corpses, the lowest theoretical value.
  • I just thought of yet another thing. How do Olimar, Louie, Alph, Brittany, and Charlie use whistles through space helmets?
    • If you look closely at Alph, Brittany, and Charlie's ingame models, you'll notice they actually have whistles indented into their space helmets. How that works while still filtering out water/oxygen, it's probably best to not think about it too hard.
      • Yep, a lot of headscratchers come from overthinking! But I never noticed the whistle-helmets. How the Hocotatians do it is still a mystery. The Koppai crew always seemed more advanced anyway.
      • Well, in Pikmin 3 we get a good look at Louie's spaceship at the swamp and it does have the same built-in whistle there. Still no idea how they did that before.
      • Well, in the new Smash Bros. and when he appears in Pikmin 3, Olimar also has a whistle indented into his helmet as well. Whether this has always been the case and the GC just couldn't render it properly, or it was recently added to quell this Fridge Logic, we'll have to wait and see if Word of God says anything about that.
  • So, when Alph and Brittany are discussin Hocotatian feeding habits(they're vegetarian, as it turns out), it suddenly bugged me: why are they only going after fruit, then? There are massive sources of meat in this planet, what's the objection they have to eating bulborb or snagret?
    • Could be they're too squicked out at the ideal to consider it. Afterall, so far the only one whose considered eatting the planets creatures is Louie, and he has noted that a lot of the creatures have some nasty side effects if you eat the wrong ones. Besides, the fruit seeds give a more sustainable food scource due to being able to cultivate them as opposed to the rather dangerious task of hunting the creatures on the planet.
    • It's possible that Koppaites are herbivores (specifically, frugivores), and so don't go after meat due to not being able to get sustenence from it (similar to how humans can't eat dirt, even though earthworms can.)
    • It's explained in-game that the Koppaians actually look for seeds to bring back to Koppai. You weren't thinking that they were hoping to feed an entire planet just with the food the three could find if it's barely enough to feed them, right? Meat is much less practical. It kinda begs the question of why they don't eat the creatures, then. Though that's probably because the Pikmin won't let them have what they can feed to the Onion instead.
  • In the end, why is the onion in Pikmin 3 so different from the onions in Pikmin 1 and 2? They have this weird technological look, and they merge into only one(OOC, obviously because a landing point for one ship and 5 onions would be hella big), but that was never explained or touched on.
    • Most common theory is that the Onions in Pikmin 3 are Onions at a later stage in their evolution cycle. Could also be a different species of Onion all together though, like how their are many different types of Bulborbs.
  • Something I always wondered and was hoping Pikmin 3 would answer, but... Would White Pikmin be immune to Puffstool spores? Their primary ability is the fact that they're immune to toxins, and some spores could be considered toxic so...
    • Probably. In fact, that would be a great opportunity to have a boss/miniboss that would be better fended off with the whites. Unfortunately the Puffstool never came back(and it might be for the best, considering White Pikmin are a rather limited resource).
  • In Pikmin 1, Olimar after retrieving the geiger counter mentions that it keeps making clicks and noises. Incase you don't know, a geiger counter measures radiation levels. Does that mean the ENTIRE planet is contaminated with radiation?
    • If you take some WMGs seriously, yes.
    • Geiger counters are sensitive enough to keep clicking away even in areas with virtually no notable amounts of radiation. It's just as likely to be picking up harmless levels of background radiation.
  • Why are some parts like the analog computer, the pilot's seat, the interstellar radio, the gieger counter, etc. required? The analog computer falls out of the ones and zeros range, making it vauge, the pilots seat is... just a seat, the interstellar radio emits a S.O.S. signal and broadcast voices to keep olimar from getting lonely, and the gieger counter measures radiation. And those are necessary to get the ship off the planet how?
    • The analog computer handles manual data entry for charting flight paths if the autopilot is out, the seat has the harness he'd need to wear for hyperspace travel or the hocotation equivalent, the interstellar radio lets him request permission to land at home without getting shot down, and the gieger counter tells him if his ships radiation shielding is compromised which could kill him very fast and painfully.
      • Good reasons to hang on to them, but that doesn't explain why not getting them sends you hurling back to the planet's surface if you don't pick them up. I mean, what's stopping Olimar from getting replacements back on Hocotate?note  I mean, at that point, getting back home is more important than anything, and it could be that he could do something makeshift to manage to get home in one piece. ...Or it could also be that game limitations stopped the game showing alternate bad endings where Olimar got past PNF-404's orbit.
  • What is the practical application of a suit that knocks you out when you are in danger?
    • More accurately, it puts you to sleep if you experience a big surprise. Maybe it's a prank, or maybe it's for people with heart conditions?
    • Olimar is a space trucker. Truck drivers are notorious for sleep deprivation and are required to take breaks to prevent them from ruining a lot product. The autopilot feature and forced sleep mechanism are most likely there to stop greedy captains who go against protocol.
  • In the final level of Pikmin 3, they say that you can't go up the geyser with Olimar. Why? It was perfectly safe for the Koppai trio to go up. Better yet, why not just have Winged Pikmin carry him up?
    • Well, they do mention that the Pikmin seemed confused about where to go when they start carrying Olimar back, and have to be guided by one of the captains back to the Onion and ship. It could be that the Plasma Wraith can mess with their natural ability to know where their onion is in some fashion. As for why the Winged Pikmin can't just fly up and over the geyser... Maybe it's a deal where they can only fly so far off the ground, even though they've managed to fly higher in game before? Other than that, only other thing I can think of is "gameplay reasons".
  • Okay. So in one of the many character conversations Alph, Brittney, and Charlie have, they make mention of how they actually can breathe oxygen, but PNF-404's oxygen levels are way higher than what a Koppaite can normally handle. Later on when the crew brings Louie aboard their ship, whose a Hocotatien, which oxygen is highly poisonous too, he's seen there without his helmet on. This brings the question, if the Koppai crew is breathing oxygen in their ship, albeit lower levels of it than what's on PNF-404, how come Louie doesn't end up dying during the time it takes for the Koppai crew to track down Olimar and gather all the fruit?
    • Most likely they "can" breathe oxygen in the same sense that humans "can" breathe carbon dioxide; they can tolerate a certain amount, but they don't actually use it in their life processes, so there's no reason to put any in their ship's artificial atmosphere.
    • Alternatively, it was an oversight and the destructive behavior witnessed later can be traced back to oxygen poisoning.
  • In Pikmin 2, why is the treasure "The Key" so light? Even if it's hollow and made of plastic, a treasure about the size of a 10 Pellet should at least take more then one Pikmin to carry.
    • It was made incredibly light so that it would be at least possible to complete the challenge stages (where the goal is to collect the key to get the hole to the next level or geyser to complete it) even if you're down to a single Pikmin. As for an in-universe reason... The Key is a strange object that can somehow interacts with other dimensions and it resembles the keys from Super Mario World that unlock alternate exits. So it's possible it might not even be "real" in a sense.
  • How is it the Pikmin just seem to have a natural sense of what should be taken back to the Onion, and what shouldn't? I mean, what was keeping them from taking a ship part back to the Onion to make more Pikmin and completely screwing Olimar over? Or any of the treasures 2, especially the edible ones like fruit. (In fact, in early beta videos for Pikmin 1, Strawberries replaced twenty pellets when it came to making Pikmin...)
    • They probably have a taste equivalent for that kind of thing.
    • The ship parts probably resemble the ship to the pikmin. As for the edible material, the Pikmin don't use the spiderwort berries either, so maybe they've just been conditioned to take anything they don't find useful back to the ship.
  • The way the Rock Pikmin's Onion is located / trapped. The others at least make some sort of sense. The Red Onion getting caught in a branch, the Yellow Onion getting trapped in a cave (possibly by a landslide or something) and can't work without light, the Winged Pikmin's Onion being caught in a Arachnode web, and even the Blue Onion being dormant under ground like in the first game. However, the Rock Pikmin Onion somehow got trapped in solid crystal. How does that even work?
    • Theory: the Rock Pikmin underwent an extinction a long time ago, and the crystal grew around the onion when it went inactive. It's possible that the crystals are some sort of salt crystals, and so grow quickly.
  • You know that snowman that you see when you get to the latter portion of the Valley of Repose in Pikmin 2? The one you have to get passed a bunch of enemies to get to? Yeah, who made that?
    • Well, Pikmin 2 was created before the developers decided to go with the Humanity's Wake trope for the setting, so it's likely it was intended to have been made by the humans who were still around at that point. As for the similar structure in Pikmin 3, could be a case of their being new intelligent life on the planet of some sorts. What they are, and how big they are, is something that may never be explained.
    • Could just be humans. Most likely evolution has made "humans" into something we no longer recognize but sizable amounts of human culture has remained intact anyway.
  • There's an Easter egg where you can nap and the Pikmin will try to give you to the Onion, but you just end up knocking into it and falling harmlessly back down. In the bad ending of the first game, Olimar dies and is taken to the onion, where he is turned into a Pikmin. So what's stopping him from being converted during the Easter egg? It can't be because he's still alive, because the Pikmin can convert Spotty Bulbears, Ravenous Whiskerpillars, and Gatling Groinks, all of which are still alive when they are converted.
    • The onion rejecting them? It does revive/awaken at their touch, so for some reason its stimuli based reactions are tied to the captains and what state they are in.
  • How did Louie get to the Twilight River? The Hocotate Ship is found in the Garden of Hope, having been heavily damaged and presumably rendered broken by the Mireclops, but you find Louie on a completely separate land mass than that, with nothing but ocean in between. How'd he get over there if the ship is firmly planted in one spot? The only possible way I can think of is that, like in Pikmin 2, the ship hit something and he fell out, then it landed in the Garden of Hope where the Mireclops got a hold of it, but that's never really hinted at, so...?
  • If the Pikmin 2 ship becomes golden after the debt is repaid, why is it normal in Pikmin 3? Also, it had a personality. Is it dead? Does no one care?
    • The ship is completely totalled, so whatever makes things isn't working. Why it's not gold anymore is anyone's guess though...
  • How do the data files in Pikmin 3 work? Is it like an SD card? Why would Olimar save each note or journal entry separately and how did they get to some of these places? He also left one as a note "to the survivors" when he found Charlie's crash site. Why did he put it in water?


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