Time Pieces are one of the main objectives in the game, serving as a fuel source that Hat Kid's Spaceship runs on to power its functions and access to other areas. However, during her first encounter with a Mafia Goon, and having the front of the ship depressurize, releasing the Time Pieces into a nearby planet, she must go out and retrieve each and every Time Piece to get back home.
|"A SPOILER? On MY Owl Express?"|
As discovered by Mustache Girl after she and Hat Kid infiltrated the Mafia HQ and defeated the Mafia Boss, a smashed Time Piece can result in time temporarily stopping and rewinding. This effect is used little in the game itself, but it is important for setting up Mustache Girl into betraying Hat Kid after refusing to use Time Pieces for fighting crime.
The second major use of reversing time is when Mustache Girl infiltrates Hat Kid's Spaceship after collecting 25 Time Pieces, where she breaks into the vault and starts to smash many pieces to result in the planet changing up into The Finale.
Main Article: Time Rift
A major side effect of Time Pieces smashing, Time Rifts can come into existence when a Time Piece smashes onto an object or living being, causing a blue or purple colored sphere to exist. In order to reclaim the Time Piece that has smashed in this manner, the player must enter the rift and collect it at the end, fixing the rift by removing it from the world.
In the game proper, Time Pieces are used as the end goal for each of the various Acts and Time Rifts across every single Chapter of A Hat in Time, with the player making contact with the Time Piece and either being sent to the Spaceship or to a central spawn point if the Chapter had a free roam mechanic.
They are used for restricting the player off from more difficult portions of the game or before they are ready to enter certain portions to make sure they own certain Hats or enough Pons to properly use Badges, represented by the panels next to the doors which are locked. Once the required quantity of Time Pieces is collected, that area's telescope appears and allows Hat Kid access.
Time Piece Distribution
Below is a brief table describing the quantity of Time Pieces in the base game, across all five Chapters and those found aboard the Spaceship.
|Battle of the Birds||7||3||10|
|Hat Kid's Spaceship||0||2||2|
Seal the Deal and Nyakuza Metro
With the addition of both Seal the Deal and the Nyakuza Metro DLC, the Time Piece count has increased past the normal 40 Pieces, where new Time Pieces are added to accommodate the new Acts and Time Rifts.
|Hat Kid's Spaceship*||0||1||1|
|Total (Game + DLC)||38||18||56|
*Hat Kid's Spaceship gains an extra Time Piece from the Seal the Deal DLC.
- Inside Subcon Forest, what seems to be a massive Time Piece is found in one of the augmented segments of the surrounding forest.