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Super Mario Sunshine

In Super Mario Sunshine, while Mario, Peach, Toadsworth, and the Toads are jetting to Isle Delfino for a holiday they find the runway on the island blocked by a large amount of goop and an angry Piranha Plant. After acquiring F.L.U.D.D. A sentient water-spewing gadget, he is able to clean up the runway and defeat the Pirahna Plant, causing it to drop a Shine Sprite. Shortly after this Mario is arrested for reasons unknown to him at the time. It is discovered that the Shine Sprites, which usually congregate at Shine Gate in Delfino Plaza, are the source of the life on the island, however someone masquerading as Mario covered Isle Delfino in a dangerous pollutant that drove away the Shine Sprites away. Mario is tasked with cleaning up the poisonous goop and recovers the Shine Sprites as he does so.
 
The Shine Sprites in Super Mario Sunshine essentially act the same as the Stars in the other 3D Mario games. They are collected by defeating bosses, clearing platform sections, collecting red coins, exchanging blue coins, collecting 100 coins in a level, and through other means. There are 120 Shine Sprites to collect in the game and as Mario collects more Shine Sprites he unlocks new levels. Collecting more Shine Sprites also makes Delfino Plaza gradually more sunny.
 

Other Appearances

A Shine Sprite as seen in Mario Kart: Double Dash!! 
  • The next 2 appearances of the Shine Sprite are in Mario Kart: Double Dash!! and Mario Kart DS. In these 2 games, the Shine Sprite is used for battle mode. In Double Dash!!'s Shine Thief, teams must hang on to the Shine Sprite within the time limit and the team who hangs on to it when time is up, wins! In DS's Shine Runners, players have 60 seconds to get as many as they could during the time limit. If players get the least amount when the 60 seconds are up, then they're out of the game and 30 seconds is added to the game's time limit and the person who has the most when the game ends is declared the winner. 

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