With Nintendo’s Pikmin 4 finally on the horizon as the first brand-new numbered entry in a decade, promotion is finally in full swing. Planting the seeds for a growing fanbase, Nintendo’s promotion isn’t limited to just trailers or even the Switch itself, but extends also to mobile.
After generating a buzz with shadow-dropped remasters of Pikmin 1 and 2 on Nintendo Switch, there was initially radio silence on anything Pikmin Bloom - the franchise’s mobile title. However, with the demo for Pikmin 4 having released today, it has now been revealed that completion of said demo will unlock special rewards in Bloom.
By completing the Nintendo Switch demo of Pikmin 4, players will be able to unlock a special Mii costume in Bloom allowing them to ride Oatchi; the space dog is a new character to 4 who joins the main protagonist as an assistant, able to carry heavy objects and transport the player and their Pikmin. Riding him in Bloom as a demo completion reward represents quite a clear nod to this fact.
Pikmin Bloom released globally in 2021 as an AR walking-based game developed by Niantic, but whilst following in the footsteps of Pokémon Go, it hasn’t reached the same level of success. Pikmin Bloom reached 2 million downloads in its first fortnight, proving popular in its own right, but couldn't compete with the mighty 75 million in Pokémon Go’s first two weeks.
Of course, living up to Pokémon Go’s accomplishments is a tricky feat for any game, and Bloom has weathered the AR storm better than some; it may soon grow beyond the lifespan of Minecraft Earth and Harry Potter: Wizards Unite.
The Nintendo moniker is likely supporting the game’s survival, which may now pay off by cultivating new Switch players. It isn’t the first time Nintendo has used a mobile game to cross-promote with the Switch, either. In January, new characters were added to the mobile game Fire Emblem Heroes ahead of their appearance in Fire Emblem Engage, rousing interest from both sides.
At launch, there were also in-game Engage items only obtainable by playing Heroes, further encouraging Switch players to get on board with the mobile title to benefit their console game. Interestingly, the situation is currently reversed with Pikmin – giving exclusive rewards in the mobile title for playing on the Switch.
As for when 4’s new species of Pikmin will be introduced on mobile, only time will tell.