Pikmin 3 Returns to Wii U eShop, Bucking Nintendo's Scarcity Trend

Pikmin 3 Returns to Wii U eShop, Bucking Nintendo's Scarcity Trend

The day after baffling fans with some limited-availability Mario titles, Pikmin is suddenly back.

Nintendo's currently getting a lot of flak for the way it's going about releasing some of its titles for the 35th anniversary of the Super Mario series, but it also just reversed course on a similarly questionable choice regarding Pikmin 3. Released for the Wii U in 2013, Pikmin 3's getting a Deluxe Switch version next month—and for a time, Nintendo removed the original from the eShop. Now, it's back.

Back in August, just a day after Nintendo unveiled Pikmin 3 Deluxe, Vice Games noticed that the original version had been delisted from the Wii U eShop. Nintendo wasn't just taking away the option of digitally purchasing the game for its older platform, either, as the "Nintendo Selects" version available for Wii U was substantially cheaper ($19.99) than the full-price Deluxe version for Switch.

As of today, Pikmin 3 for Wii U has been restored to the eShop, still at its cheaper "Select" price tag. While the temporary removal of Pikmin 3 may not have impacted that many people, it both stood as an example of Nintendo's high pricing for re-releases and as a reminder of the impermanence of digital storefronts, an issue for collectors and preservationists alike.

With many Nintendo and Pikmin fans having skipped the Wii U entirely, Pikmin 3 Deluxe definitely stands to do well when it launches on October 30. Still, especially in light of the recent Super Mario news, it's worth pointing out that Nintendo is evidently willing to reverse course on delisting titles, at least under certain circumstances.

As it stands, both the Super Mario 3D All-Stars collection (featuring Super Mario 64, Super Mario Sunshine, and Super Mario Galaxy) and the battle royale title Super Mario 35 are set to be limited-time releases only. The former will have a limited physical run and will only be available for purchase till March 31, 2021, and the latter will only be included with Nintendo Switch Online from its release in October until the end of March as well. If Nintendo decides to pull a Pikmin 3 with these as well, it would make a lot of folks happy.

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Mathew Olson

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Mathew Olson is a writer formerly of Digg, where he blogged and reported about all things under the umbrella of internet culture (including games, of course). He lives in New York, grew up under rain clouds and the influence of numerous games studios in the Pacific Northwest, and will talk your ear off about Half-Life mods, Talking Heads or Twin Peaks if you let him.

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