|This article contains outdated information that is inaccurate for the current version. It was last updated for LU-356355. Unreflected changes in the discussed game mechanics are detailed here: AP-408920|
Pips plant seeds in natural tiles with a Hardness rating under 150. They plant Waterweed seeds only if the materials have salt water above. They do not appear to plant other seeds in materials with salt water. They don't plant a seed in a target tile if there are already 3 or more Plants within an area: 5 up, 5 to the right, 6 down and 6 to the left from the tile.
Pips only carry seeds for about 30 tiles - if there is no tile eligible within this distance, they will leave seeds where they are. They are capable of planting in Farm Tiles, which will also domesticate the plant.
They are able to cling strongly to any surface, and will freely wander the full perimeter of whatever chamber they are in. They are not hostile and are quite mobile, inevitably wandering away from any chamber they are not trapped in. They also seed hanging plants from the underside.
Occasionally, Pips navigate to storage containers and knock a debris type out of it, when piles amount for more than 1kg / 1 whole seed.
Another annoyance can be provided if they wander into empty farm plots, since they will plant seeds there too.
The Pip comes in two variants (as of the Fast Friends update). While their diet is the same, the Cuddle Pip variant can only be obtained by feeding pips Thimble Reed and they consume 20% more food than their regular counterparts, but they can cuddle eggs and only requires 4 tiles of space per cuddle pip when calculating overcrowding. This allows 3 times as many cuddle pips to be ranched as the regular pips in the same size ranch. Cuddle pips also consider all eggs to only require 4 tiles of space regardless of the egg type (allowing for them to be ranched in a large incubator room without becoming crowded).
A Pip fed primarily Thimble Reed will have a chance of producing a Cuddle Pip Egg, with a larger chance given a higher volume of Thimble Reed consumed. The Cuddle Pip shares the same behavior of the Pip, but it can cuddle eggs and hug duplicants.
Cuddling and Hugging
Twice a cycle, cuddle pips will search for an egg they can reach to try and cuddle it. Successful cuddles increase the hatching rate of the egg by 5% per cycle stacking with the incubator's lullabied buff. This buff cannot be stacked with itself, so the ideal scenario is to have twice as many eggs as cuddle pips in the room.
Twice per cycle (unless already successfully hugged), cuddle pips will stand up and look for hugs from passing duplicants for 30 seconds. If a duplicant hugs a cuddle pip, the pip will then try to cuddle every egg in the room for the next cycle. The hug will also provide the duplicant with a buff which provides -5% stress per cycle for half a cycle.
Note: Duplicants will not seek out pips to hug them. They will only hug a pip if they happen to pass by during the 30 second hug window.
It is possible to use their ability to plant plants in natural tiles to build farms that require no resources. It is possible to make a farm of plants planted on every other block horizontally and every 5 blocks vertically by forcing the Pips to plant from the top right going left and doing the rows from the top down.
Pips will not plant a seed where the building is planned for construction. You can use it by placing e.g. ladders everywhere, with priority 1, and then cancelling construction - almost immediately Pip will carry a seed to that location (assuming all other conditions are met).
There is a bug where two plants can be planted in the same spot, which prevents Pips from planting where it looks like they should.
Creating natural tiles
- Shove Voles eat Iron, Regolith, Dirt, and then excrete natural tiles accordingly. Tiles placement and vole management may be tedious.
- Heating up 5 kg piles of Fertilizer, Algae or Slime on the floor above 125 °C will turn them into dirt tiles.
- Manual Airlock can be surrounded by 9 tiles, with free tile above. Destroying manual airlock will turn it into tile of respective ore.
- Liquid Phosphorus and Sulfur can be delivered via Pitcher Pump and Bottle Emptiers, and cooled down. They will turn into natural tiles if their mass is enough (strictly above 160 kg and 400 kg respectively).
- For planting Sleet Wheat and other cold-tolerant plants, water can be poured into place and then Frozen into natural Ice tiles. Mostly useful on Rime
Dense Arbor Tree Farm
Pips' nimble paws allow them to plant seeds in Farm Tiles between Arbor Trees that Duplicants can't. A space efficient farm can be built by dispensing seeds and a pip in an enclosed room with farm tile floor. Eventually, all tiles will be planted by the pip. The same trick applies to a Farm Tile adjacent to other buildings as well, as long as the 3 tiles space above it is not obstructed.
(The following only applies to regular pips)
Pips require 0.325 wild or 0.08 domestic Arbor Tree per Pip to stay fed. A maximum size ranch can be supported by 3 wild or 1 domestic Arbor Tree.
Pips can process wild Arbor Trees into free dirt. One Pip can supply 2 Mealwood plants or domestic Arbor Trees, 4 Nosh Sprouts or Sleet Wheat plants, or 5 Oxyferns. A shared ranch with seven Pips and a single Sage Hatch can act as a low-maintenance source of Coal. Two Pips can keep a Fertilizer Synthesizer running constantly (with some dirt left over). A single Pip ranch can supply 16 Mealwood, which will feed 5 Glossy Dreckos; three Pip ranches can sustain 48 Mealwood, exactly enough for two full Drecko ranches.
Pips can rummage through Arbor Tree branches for Arbor Acorns - this is the only way to acquire additional acorns. They can reach all branches from the base of the arbor tree.
- Pips can plant in entombed Flower Pots, which results on tame plants that don't need solid fertilizer to grow.
- Pips can plant several seeds on the same tile when manipulated to do so.
- Wild, happy Pips lay their eggs when they are 65 cycles old.
- Just before a Pip is killed by a dupe, there is a chance the mood message "Forgiveness" appears.
- Pips are called Squirrels in game files.
- Pip Planting: Everything You Need to Know on Klei forums.