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The Hocotate Freight Steam Ship, otherwise referred to as simply the Hocotate Ship, is an old Hocotate Freight steam-powered rocket ship which Captain Olimar pilots in Pikmin 2. The Hocotate Ship has artificial intelligence, is capable of speech and gives advice to Olimar and Louie throughout the game. It has a pompous and disdainful personality, which Olimar laments in his notes. Once the President's debt is repaid, the ship is upgraded into a much sleeker, golden model.


The Ship can store Pikmin, storing both White Pikmin and Purple Pikmin. Unlike the S.S. Dolphin, the Captains cannot check how many treasures have been collected- nor can they restore their suit's damage meter. Standing in the green light and pressing A before Purple or White Pikmin have been discovered does nothing. The ship has two cockpits, and is capable of deep space communication, sending a report each night to Hocotate and receiving e-mails. To do this, it must be in orbit around PNF-404. The ship can dispatch a Research Pod for traveling underground.

Gold ship

The Ship once the debt has been repaid, shown here in Perplexing Pool.

Research Pod[]

Main article: Research Pod

Whenever the captains go exploring underground, the nosecone of the Ship, known as the Research Pod, detaches and flies with them into the cave. It is used to store any treasures and enemy carcasses to be sold to pay off the debt upon exiting the cave. In emergency cases, it can empty its cargo, take in Olimar, Louie and the Pikmin, and return to the surface; should this happen any carcasses and treasures collected are lost. If you have rescued the King of Bugs, a scratching noise can sometimes be heard when near the golden research pod.

Sales Pitch[]

When a complete "series" of treasures is collected, the Ship creates a Sales Pitch for each treasure in the series. They generally read as advertisements for the treasures as if they were a products.


Superstick Textile
The latest must-have item for all ship emergency-repair kits, this miracle fabric is a lifesaver! Its adhesive power is so great, once it's applied, it can never be removed...not even surgically!

Pikmin 3[]

Spoiler warning: Plot or ending details follow.

The remains of the ship are found in the Garden of Hope in Pikmin 3, where it crashed for the final time. Here, it was attacked by local wildlife while Olimar was out of commission, and before Louie could escape in it. The Research Pod no longer functions, and interaction with the ship is impossible. Also, in the Switch version Pikmin 3 Deluxe, it appears in the second side story, where Olimar and Louie must repair it by bringing the missing components, and at the end they use it to return to their planet, Hocotate.

Spoilers end here.


Prior to Super Smash Bros. Brawl, the ship was always referred to indirectly as "the ship," so its given name was unknown, but fans took to calling it the "Hocotate Ship" to distinguish it from the ship in the first game. Since Super Smash Bros. Brawl, the nickname has been used officially, and in Pikmin 3, one of Olimar's journal entries is "Curse that Hocotate Ship!"

In the Super Smash Bros. series, since Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS and Wii U, the ship has been titled "Hoctotate Bomb."

Crossover appearances[]

Super Mario Galaxy[]

SMG The Ship

Super Mario Galaxy's version of The Ship.

Super Mario Galaxy has a planetoid shaped very similarly to the Ship located in the Space Junk Galaxy. It is likewise a red, rusted color.

Super Smash Bros. series[]

Super Smash Bros. Brawl[]

Hocotate Ship SSBB

Olimar entering the Hocotate Ship for his Final Smash, End of Day, in Super Smash Bros. Brawl

The Hocotate Ship makes various appearances in Super Smash Bros. Brawl. Aside from appearing as a trophy and a sticker and making a few background appearances, the Hocotate Ship is used by Olimar at various points during battle.

In battle, Olimar's stage entrance consists of him arriving in the Hocotate Ship and jumping out to pluck three Pikmin. The Hocotate Ship is featured during Olimar's Final Smash, End of Day, in which Olimar enters the Hocotate Ship while Bulborbs snack on his opponents, damaging them. After a few seconds, the Hocotate Ship crash-lands back on the stage, capable of inflicting further damage. If Olimar uses his Final Smash while on top of the Bulborb in the Distant Planet stage, the ship steers away from the Bulborb as it falls.

In Adventure Mode: The Subspace Emissary, Olimar's ship is seen along with a number of other airborne vehicles in the attempt to enter Subspace. It can also be seen at the background at the start of the level Outside the Ruins. In The Great Maze, the Hocotate Ship appears in the background as part of the level's scenery.

Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS and Wii U[]

Hocotate Ship SSB4

Sonic and Olimar facing the Hocotate Bomb item in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U

The Hocotate Ship appears in Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS and Wii U, fulfilling the same purpose in Olimar's moveset, as well as his echo fighter, Alph. The Hocotate Ship has a larger role than before, as it appears in the form of an item named the Hocotate Bomb. When thrown, the Hocotate Bomb blasts off into the air, and it can carry opponents above the upper blast line. After a while, the ship unexpectedly drops and explodes on impact with the ground, damaging any nearby fighters.

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate[]

The Hocotate Bomb returns as an item in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, having the same function as before.

Nintendo Land[]

The Ship NL

The Ship as seen in the Nintendo Land Plaza.

In Nintendo Land, the Ship has a role in the attraction Pikmin Adventure. The ship is the goal point in every level of the minigame.

Monita's notes[]

"This is the ship that Olimar piloted during his legendary employment at Hocotate Freight. This one doesn't actually speak, though, which is probably best for everyone."


Main article: Hocotate Ship/Gallery


  • Although the Ship was obviously there when Louie ate the Golden Pikpik Carrots, it never told the President.
  • When the Ship is upgraded after repaying the debt, the second cockpit has a television installed.
  • The ships name is never mentioned, imprinted, or even told in a gamer's guide. It is referred to as "the Pre-Dolphin" or simply "the Ship". This would explain why it is generally older or messier. However, in the Japanese version, it is explicitly named "the Dolphin Unit 1" (ドルフィン初号機).
  • In an earlier version of Pikmin 2, Olimar's journal on the Network Mainbrain refers to the Ship as the "S.S. Dolphin I".
  • In the American/NTSC version of Pikmin 3, Olimar refers to it as the "Hocotate Ship" for the first time in his exploration notes, making the common fan name official, but in the European/PAL version of Pikmin 3, he simply calls it "the Ship."
  • In Louie's expedition log in Pikmin 3 he says he is a crew member of the S.S. Dolphin.  It is unknown if he was referring to the Ship or Olimar's ship.
  • In Pikmin 3, it is possible to get out of bounds at the boss arena in the Garden of Hope, allowing you to get up close to the destroyed Ship and walk around it.
  • The Ship always sends the captains to gather treasure, even though its research pod should be able to fly around and collect the treasure itself.
  • Some fans theorize that the Ship's name is the "S.S. Angel" because of the angel painted on its side, but "Hocotate Ship" won out as the most popular name as it is technically canon and still keeps the tradition of referring to it indirectly.
  • While the Hocotate Ship is the first intelligent machine shown in game, it's not the first in the series. In the first game, Olimar reveals in his notes on the Analog Computer that the S.S. Dolphin also has an AI with a personality.

See also[]