If you're like me, you're only two pickups away from finding all one hundred.
And you're pretty proud about that, because you didn't have to resort to GameFAQs to figure out how to get them. You activated the Chozo Observatory hint system, which puts little dots on your in-game map wherever a pickup is hiding. Then, before heading to the game's final planet, you went around and tracked each little dot and turned it into a little X. So your pockets are bursting with missile expansions and energy tanks and whatever else Metroid Prime 3 has you collecting to reach that magical 100.
But if you're like me, you can't find two of them. You've pored over the maps, slowly scanning each one for any little dots that you overlooked. Planet Norion? Check. Bryyo? Yep. Elysia? All done. Pirate Homeworld (couldn't they have named that?) All X'd.
Hey, maybe the game is saving the last two pickups for the final planet, Phaaze. So you trigger the events that send Samus off to her destiny on Phaaze, even after one of the Aurora Units gives you the warning that once you go to Phaaze, you won't be able to come back.
You poke around on Phaaze for a bit. No pickups. You inch closer and closer to what you know is going to end the game, and you're still at 98%.
So you give in. You go search for Metroid 3 on GameFAQs. Because you need those last two pickups.
You browse the walkthroughs, all written by fifteen-year-olds (complete with hilarious Author's Notes at the end, where they discuss how their busy class schedule interfered with the writing of this FAQ.) Nobody seems to have a clear numeration of the pickups - difficult to count because the game counts the unavoidable weapon upgrades as pickups - but every one agrees that there are no pickups on Phaaze. So you retreat to your save point.
If you're like me, you spend another hour trying to pinpoint exactly which pickups you're missing, by counting lists from the FAQs and cross-checking your maps. You have all the missile expansions (easily counted at 255 missiles), all the energy cells, but you're shy one of the fourteen extra energy tanks. There's one of your missing two. By process of elimination, you guess that your other missing pickup must be a ship missile upgrade... although you don't know how to count your ship's missiles to verify that.
But now you have to determine which planet holds your missing items. Again, the maps all check out... all X's. The only area that you can't check is the Olympus, the tutorial level. Holy shit, what if you missed one of the two pickups back in training? That was twenty hours ago, so you have no idea what even happened back then. And you definitely cannot fly back to Olympus to find out. Did the game glitch? Did you get one and the game didn't count it? You're starting to hate Metroid Prime 3. If you can't finish the game with all 100, you're not going to finish it at all.
Then you notice the bottom of the FAQ page has some map files, probably drawn in Microsoft Paintworks Plus Elements Trial Edition. These maps have the pickups marked on them.
So you compare those maps to your in-game maps, scrolling across and muttering "Got that one. Got that one. Fucking got that one. Yes shit got that one." Then you get to Bryyo.
Bryyo has some kind of weirdass little corner that doesn't show up in the map system.
This FAQ map (drawn by spoony_bard_ol) has it, but the game does not let you see it unless you happen to be standing in that area. So the whole Chozo Observatory thing doesn't even help you here.