Ship parts are the main items that need to be recovered in Pikmin. They are fragments of the ship used by Captain Olimar, the S.S. Dolphin. After colliding with a comet, the ship lost most of its parts, which are needed to leave the planet. Scattered around the areas in the game, they must be successfully retrieved back into the ship in order to repair it.
The parts are usually placed in such a manner that some form of challenge must be overcome in order to access them. Some are found on high ledges, some are behind walls, others again are inside enemies, most commonly bosses.
After a certain number of parts are recovered, the ship's stability will increase, and the player will be able to access a new area. There are a total of 30 ship parts, but only 25 of them are mandatory in order to leave the planet. Should the player collect all parts, they will be awarded with the best ending. If after 30 days, all mandatory ship parts are collected, the normal ending will be shown. If, however, the player fails to recover all mandatory ship parts after 30 days, they will receive the bad ending.
Every time a ship part is recollected, the action stops, and a cutscene takes place showing the part being beamed into the Dolphin. Around half of the ship parts just disappear, but others will actually cause some sparkle particles to come out, and pop up on their correct place. Once installed, the ship part remains visible on the Dolphin for the rest of the game.
Items noted with a * are not required to get the normal ending, but are required to get the best ending.
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