According to Nintendo game designer Shigeru Miyamoto, Pikmin 3 won’t be getting online multiplayer. Miyamoto said that they considered adding online multiplayer to Pikmin 3, but found that Pikmin 3 is a game that would be difficult to “sync up over an internet connection”, because there are so many characters and figures on the screen at once. This would lead to a drop in the frame rate below what is acceptable (Pikmin 3 is rumored to run at 60 fps in singleplayer mode). Speaking to IGN, Miyamoto did confirm that the game will feature local multiplayer when it’s released later this year. Miyamoto said:
“But in the situation of Pikmin, for example, since you would have lots of individual Pikmin, whose every movement and location is going to be really important in the game, it would be very difficult to sync up over an internet connection.”
Miyamoto’s reasoning took us a bit by surprise, since there are plenty of online multiplayer games that have a lot of characters online at the same time, namely, RTS titles. Games like StarCraft 2 have a lot of characters and units on the screen at the same time during online multiplayer. We’re unsure how Nintendo couldn’t do this with Pikmin, as the game is essentially an real time strategy game. From what we’ve seen during E3, Pikmin 3 doesn’t have that many more characters on the screen than say, StarCraft 2, which can have hundreds of units on the screen at the same time during online play. We’re a bit puzzled that Nintendo couldn’t figure out how to make work — one could imagine lowering the amount of Pikmins for online multiplayer, for example.