The whistle is a main part of the gameplay in the Pikmin games. This is the primary way of calling idle Pikmin, the secondary way being a leader bumping into them. Leaders can also be called into the group via whistling, but only in Pikmin 3 can they be called via bumping. Whistling can also be used to instantly rescue Pikmin who are suffering from a hazard, such as fire, call drowning Pikmin to land, and help Pikmin who are about to fall prey to the Vehemoth Phosbat or Sandbelching Meerslug's vortex attacks.
It'll blow some sound waves towards the cursor when used by pressing / in the first two games, and / / in Pikmin 3. The longer the button is held, the wider the call's radius, up to a size and time limit. The maximum radius (unmodified by the Mega Tweeter) is about the size of an Onion's circular landing pad.
There are different commands that leaders can do that also play whistle sounds. Pikmin can be separated intro groups of their own type with a simple dismiss command. A third type of audio order also exists, albeit not directly related to the whistle. On the first two games, when is tilted, a small tune is heard and the Pikmin will move in the direction the stick is held; the farther the stick is tilted, the farther they'll move. On the New Play Control! versions, must be pressed, and the Pikmin will move towards the cursor's position.
In the first two games, idle or working Pikmin and leaders jump to attention with a grunt when called by the whistle and run to the leader immediately after. In Pikmin 3, Pikmin and leaders still immediately acknowledge the whistle, but do not actually start running until the whistle's radius is no longer around them.
It is to note that the duration of the whistle is different depending on the game:
- Pikmin: around 1.37 second
- Pikmin 2: around 1.59 second
- New Play Control! Pikmin: around 1.37 second
- New Play Control! Pikmin 2: around 1 second
- Pikmin 3: around 2.07 seconds
Visually, when using the whistle, some manner of circular shape will appear around the focus point, in order to indicate the area of reach. The whistle's graphical representation depends on the game. In Pikmin and Pikmin 2, a spectrum of colored bubbles appears when whistling, rotating around the cursor in a ribbon-like pattern. In Pikmin 3, a blue, digital-like dashed circle appears, and if the cursor is held for longer, a transparent cylindrical column grows into the air and below ground, indicating that the whistle is then reaching Pikmin above and below the cursor, such as Winged Pikmin.
In Pikmin 2, Olimar, Louie and the President all have different calling whistles and group move fanfares, but share the same dismiss whistle. Olimar's whistles sound like a normal pea whistle, Louies' resemble a toy train whistle, and the Presidents' resemble a car's horn. In Pikmin 3, whistles are integrated into every leaders' helmets, and are the same for all characters: a regular pea whistle like Olimar's.
Story Mode limitations
Sometimes, the whistle is limited to prevent the player from breaking the game's normal flow. This happens in Pikmin 2 where leaders in day 1 cannot whistle each other or the other Pikmin until they reunite. It's also impossible to whistle Blue Pikmin before getting Yellow Pikmin, in New Play Control! Pikmin 2 exclusively.
In Pikmin 3, the game sometimes locks the whistle too. On day 1, Charlie cannot whistle until he discovers the large group of Yellow Pikmin, and Alph cannot whistle before discovering the three first Red Pikmin. On the first day the Distant Tundra is explored, Brittany cannot whistle until she meets the first Yellow Pikmin. Using a certain glitch, it's possible for Brittany to exit the cave without unlocking Yellow Pikmin. If the introduction cutscene wasn't triggered, the whistle will remain locked until the end of the day, although it's still possible to whistle by grabbing a Pikmin.
- Pluckaphone: allows the leaders to uproot Pikmin just by whistling them.
- Mega Tweeter: allows for a wider range and longer lasting whistle.
In Pikmin Adventure
In the Nintendo Land attraction Pikmin Adventure, pressing / or tapping the call icon on the Wii U GamePad will cause the Mii controlling Captain Olimar to whistle all Pikmin – including the other player Pikmin – to him. This will cause all player Pikmin to stack on top of Olimar's head, which Olimar can now throw at enemies or other obstacles. Pikmin can refuse being called by shaking the Wii Remote. Much like in the Super Smash Bros. games, Pikmin can be called from anywhere.
In the Super Smash Bros. series
This article or section is a short summary on the move Pikmin Order.
In Super Smash Bros. Brawl and Super Smash Bros. for 3DS and Wii U, Olimar's down special move is called Pikmin Order. When used, Olimar briefly blows his whistle around him. Any Pikmin that are stranded will quickly jump back next to Olimar, regardless of their distance to the leader. Then, all the Pikmin are grouped by type. If this move is used while they are already grouped, it'll send the next group to the back of the line. Interestingly, this move has some super armor frames, which means that, with good timing, one can use this move and suffer no knockback from powerful attacks or even Final Smashes.
To do: Upload sounds for the missing games.
Names in other languages
|Portuguese (Portugal)||Apito||Whistle (object)||Translation taken from the Pikmin instruction manual.|
- YouTube video showing how the whistle remains locked if the introduction cutscene is skipped.
|Dismiss • Dodge • Group move • Lie down • Lock-on • Pluck • Punch • Spray • Throw • Whistle|
|Types||Red Pikmin • Yellow Pikmin • Blue Pikmin • Purple Pikmin • White Pikmin • Rock Pikmin • Winged Pikmin • Bulbmin|
|Biology||Candypop Bud • Maturity • Onion • Pikmin extinction • Spirit|
|Abilities||Carrying • Digging • Dodge • Hiding|
|Controlling||Dismiss • Group move • Pluck • Throw • Whistle|
|Other||Mushroom Pikmin • Olimar as Pikmin|