All fighters are on a cruising ship which passes along a Cannon Turret that fires bombs at the ship. Anyone that comes in contact with the bombs will take heavy damage and take high knockback. Any player that runs into the front of the pirate ship while in the water will be automatically KO'd. A boat, the King of Red Lions, occasionally makes an appearance by sailing from the right side of the stage, and acts as a platform that players can stand on. The ship will also run into a small island from time to time, giving players a newly shaped terrain to fight on. The ship will eventually right itself as the island sinks, forcing players to return to the norm. There is a catapult at the front of the ship that will come up from the deck on occasion. Anyone who is standing on it will be sent flying when it fires.
Another hazard is that a storm will sometimes cause a cyclone to come from the background, throwing the ship high into the sky, eliminating the option to swim around near the ship. The ship will fall back down after a short time and land back in the water. While falling, the players have improved jumping abilities.
This stage is usually a counterpick or a banned stage. This is because of stalling potential in the water, powerful camping spots on the King of Red Lions and on the rightmost point of the rock, and overly powerful stage hazards.
This ship is taken from The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker, although it is smaller. After Link's sister, Aryll, was kidnapped by the Helmaroc King, Link sailed to the Forsaken Fortress on Tetra's ship to save her. During the trip, he was challenged by Niko, a pirate. This ship came back later in the game during the search for the third Divine Pearl. The pirates stole bombs on Windfall Island, but were forced to a have a rest there because of the cursed sea. Link managed to hear the password, and then came back on the ship to be challenged one more time and then get the bombs. This ship appeared a final time at the end of the game to rescue both Link and Tetra after they defeat Ganondorf. The ship came back at the beginning and end of The Legend of Zelda: Phantom Hourglass. The smaller, red boat that appears in the back is known as The King of Red Lions, which is actually Hyrule's king in disguise. He can talk, and assists Toon Link during the events of The Wind Waker. Also from The Wind Waker are the enemy look-out towers that fire bombs at you if you get too close to them seen in the background of this stage. In The Wind Waker when Link conducts the Ballad of Gales with his Wind Waker, a cyclone comes and transports Link to his destination. The cyclone that comes in this stage could be a reference to Ballad of Gales being played.
A ship commandeered by Tetra that sails to the far corners of the deep blue sea. When Link gets on board, he is challenged with a test given by the pirate underling Niko. In that test, Link must learn to use jumps and rope swinging to get through an obstacle course and reach Niko. If successful, he receives the Spoils Bag and bombs.
The rain on this stage actually is not rendered in 3D. It is actually just 2D sprites falling in the foreground and background, similar to the Distant Planet stage.
The King of Red Lions is larger than he originally was in The Wind Waker, and the sail is on the outside edge of the boat, rather than inside it.
When falling from the cyclone, King Dedede can avoid battle by using his up special, allowing him to avoid the battle for ten to fifteen seconds.
Ganondorf can use his side special move to grab players standing on the bow and drop them into the water, where they will be run over by the ship and Ganondorf can swim away.
In The Wind Waker, the pirate ship had only one platform on the mast, not two.
The enormous cyclone that occasionally appears is derived from the power used by the demigod of wind, Cyclos. It may also refer to the The Wind Waker song, Ballad of Gales, which was needed to warp around the Great Sea.
This is the only stage where you can be crushed (not counting the stages in The Subspace Emissary). This can be done by standing between the ship and the rock.
If a Rolling Crate is inserted between the rock and the ship, the game will emit a loud buzzing noise.
In the event match "The Pirate Airship" there are no bombs, rocks or Red Lion Ship
Pirate Ship is one of two Smash 4 DLC stages that are exclusive to one version of the game (specifically, for Wii U), the other being Miiverse.
It is also the only familiar stage with this distinction.