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February 17th, 2008 | EarthBound, Interviews, Itoi

People are always asking about how Shigesato Itoi came up with EarthBound’s final boss Giygas, and especially the stuff Giygas says. It all stems from something Itoi said in an interview back in 2003, before MOTHER 1+2 came out. There’ve been a lot of rumors and stuff flying around ever since (probably because I wasn’t clear enough when I relayed the news, doh :P ) so I decided to finally translate the part of the interview where he talks about Giygas. Below is my translation of it.

Note that you can also see some more details about this stuff here.

———–

Feelings of MOTHER
Asking questions about this mysterious game up close and personal

PART 7
“Coming up with Giygas’ lines was really painful”

————

(note: the text in red is the interviewer talking)

– So MOTHER 2 has a really “heavy” side to it.

Itoi: Near the end of the game, you’re left to make really unpleasant decisions, right? Like, “What should I answer?! What button should I press?!” Things like the scene where you talk to the doctor — when I was writing them, I even scared myself (laugh).

– And as a player, I felt terrified, too.

Itoi: Yes! Thank you! I’m honored you could remember that moment so clearly after all this time. The doctor walks to the edge of the cliff, and there’s a pause because it’s hard for him to say what he has to say. And he even says it with his back turned to you. “This is hard for me to say, but…”

– Plus, you’ve followed along a path the whole time to get where you are, so now you’re not sure if you should believe this new development or not. So in many ways, you’re left feeling uneasy. It’s like, at some point, you’ve wound up on a much “deeper” path. That feeling is something that only MOTHER has.

Itoi: I was hoping it would turn out that way when I was making it, so I’m happy to hear that. I know I made the game myself, but when I look back on it, I feel jealous (laugh).

Anyway, at the same time (in the game), there’s this fear of, “There’d be no turning back now…” But, on the other hand, it fills you with fighting spirit. People reading this might not understand what I mean, but being able to truly feel that is what makes a game good. But honestly, coming up with things like Giygas’ lines was so painful that I was in tears (laugh). The way I added his text was really a one-time-only kind of thing, you see.

– (laugh)

Itoi: Basically, Giygas is something you can’t make sense of, you know? But there’s also a part to him that’s like a living being that deserves love. That part is the breast of Hisako Tsukuba from “The Military Policeman and the Dismembered Beauty”. (NOTE: you can see a summary of this movie here)

– ……Huh?

Itoi: The breast of Hisako Tsukuba from “The Military Policeman and the Dismembered Beauty“.

– I’m sorry, I’m not quite sure what that is…

Itoi: I don’t think anyone would be.

– What are you referring to?

Itoi: Trauma.

– Trauma? Yours?

Itoi: Yes. When I was a kid, I accidentally saw the wrong movie at a theater. It was a Shin-Toho movie titled “The Military Policeman and the Dismembered Beauty”.

After I saw it, I went back home and was silent and just really out of it. I had received such a big shock that I worried my parents. After all, a lady had been raped. By a river. In the movie. When the guy grabbed her breast really hard, it got distorted into this ball shape. It all hit me really hard. It was a direct attack to my brain.

– When you were a little boy?

Itoi: When I was a little boy.

In other words, there was this sense of terror having atrocity and eroticism side-by-side, and that’s what Giygas’ lines at the end are. During the end, he says, “It hurts,” right? That’s… her breast. It’s like, how do I put it, a “living-being” sensation.

– Uhh, what should I do with all this?

Itoi: Why not just write it up?

– Ahahahaha.

Itoi: It’d be the kind of info you only get on 1101.com. But actually, I’m the only one who knows about this.

– That goes without saying!

Itoi: But, in the end, that scene gets the player’s mind working.

– That’s true, but…

Itoi: Well, you know, having a villain there who simply goes, “Wahahaha!” and the like would clearly be bad. But, actually, when I think about it, having villains go, “Wahahaha!” is a really intriguing pattern. But there’s no point in wondering all by yourself for days on end what it means for a bad guy to go, “Wahahaha!” at the climax of a game, you know? I get the feeling that there aren’t many people in the game industry who would do that sort of thing, though.

– I don’t think it’s limited to just the game industry, though.

Itoi: In short, “What does it mean for a bad guy to laugh?” Hmm…

– Please return to the topic of Giygas.

Itoi: Well, at the time, I didn’t know how to use computers. So I would say all the text out loud. And next to me was a staff member. The younger Miura brother, Matchan. It would be just us two in the room, and whenever I would talk, he would type it in.

– Wow…

Itoi: I would say things one (Japanese) letter at a time. And then it would be typed in right away, and the hiragana would be displayed on the screen. Having it in hiragana makes it a little scarier too, I think.

I would even say, “dot dot dot”. I would say, “You” and “You” would be typed in. I’d look at the screen and then I’d say, “No, erase ‘You’,” and then he’d erase it. Then, after thinking for a bit, I’d say things like, “……Gu, gi, go, ge, ga.” Then, while looking at the “Gugigogega” on the screen, I’d say, “Add another ‘Go’… Yeah… Dot dot dot… And three more dot-dot-dots… Make a blank line… And another… Okay, new line!”

– That’s an incredible working environment.

Itoi: Writing things that way, there were moments of, “Whoa!”

After I would say something, sometimes I would be like, “Whoa!” while Mr. Miura, the person typing it, would say, “Mr. Itoi…” while almost in tears. And then I’d say, “OK, that’s good.”

Probably, if I had done this by myself, things wouldn’t have turned out the way they did. I probably would’ve thought that typing “Gugigogega” myself, then erasing it, then adding another thing to it would’ve been a real pain, and all the extra work would’ve made me hold back my words. I needed someone to act as an extra pair of hands so I could focus on thinking. Plus, I could see the face of the person typing in my dialogue. When there was a really good line, the expression on his face would clearly change. So this method of concentrating while looking at his small reactions wound up being an accidental invention of mine.

 

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33 Comments to Shigesato Itoi, Giygas, and Boobies


Mr. Nosy said on Feb. 12, 2009

Mr. Itoi was at the wrong movie, hai?

I wonder what was the movie he intended to watch…? (Hai, I WOULD ask him that when I get the chance… >_<; )

Aidan said on Feb. 17, 2009

Aidan knows now, but Aidan is wondering if Ness is related to anyone from Mother 1? and by the way that film is really creepy is’nt it?

darkside said on Feb. 28, 2009

i bet he is related to nintin

Stuff said on Mar. 1, 2009

Well…Giygas is based off of rape…and disfigured breasts…Cool.

Electric Nova said on Apr. 10, 2009

I saw the clip from the movie and I can see how he mistook that scene for “rape” even though nobody really took their clothes off.

Anon said on Apr. 16, 2009

I’d love to see the clip of the movie he’s talking about…
I’ve beaten this game dozens of times; most in my childhood.
Now I feel like my childhood is a lie.
D;<

Mato said on Apr. 16, 2009
Komaru said on Jul. 28, 2009

It’s a really great feeling to be able to say “Giygas was inspired by a BOOBIE” and have in be true.

PINGAS said on Aug. 2, 2009

LOL

R4shka said on Aug. 13, 2009

Come on! Giygas looks more like a wicked soul than a breast! Look ; HE GOT A FACE!!!

K said on Aug. 14, 2009

It wasn’t inspired by a boob, it’s a hole set of ideas, related to the “Mother” concept. Althought it sounds real funny… But the general concept isn’t, at all…

Oh well, master designing and ideas here, wtf, ftw…

awesomeNess said on Jul. 15, 2010

In his normal form or twisted form, Giygas doesn’t look like a breast.

Sparky said on Aug. 19, 2010

WTF is Gugigogega?!

anonymous said on Sep. 29, 2010

Itoi didnt say how did he did the twisted red image of gyigas i mean as we see the picture of gyigas i am kind of wondering how did he do that swirl effect,where did he get that scary image?

PSI-Paula said on Dec. 12, 2010

If I’m correct, Isn’t Ninten Ness’ father?

Tokens said on Jan. 5, 2011

I heard from a friend in japan that Ninten is Ness’s father but i highly think that’s unlikely because mother 1 took place 1989 while mother 2’s story line took place in 1994 or 1995 or flint being ness cause ness died in mother 2 at the end and revealed that in 3
or Alec being ness now that’s my opinion so don’t F@#$ !! nag me about this comment !!

Ben10fan900 said on Jan. 29, 2011

I want 2 ask itoi if the featus thing is supost 2 be in-game or not.

Ryley said on Feb. 18, 2011

The scene wasn’t that bad. I rented the movie recently and watched the whole thing. I saw some scenes more “scary” than this. Wanna watch a traumatizing movie? Watch THE SHINING.

[...] this has to be a creepy accident, right? Not really. Shigesato Itoi, the game’s creator, has said in interviews that he based the Giygas fight on a traumatic childhood experience: He accidentally walked into the [...]

[...] Earthbound Central, Wikipedia [...]

Frozenskin said on Aug. 22, 2011

IMHO, the graphic concept of Giygas comes from the girl’s head and the assassin’s hands grabbing her neck.
The images matches, expecially if seen by a child 50 years ago.

[...] art, which has been theorized to be everything from a fetus to a boob. I don’t know. But this interview of Itoi discussing the infamous dialogue suggests that it is, in fact, a boob. [...]

Lacusness said on Oct. 19, 2011

@Ryley Keep in mind Itoi watched the movie when he was a kid.

oIovoIo said on Mar. 4, 2012

Not going to lie, the shallowness of a lot of these comments makes me weep a bit inside…

Noodle said on Mar. 28, 2012

What bothers me is the interviewers lack of respect for Mr.Itoi. I always knew this was a well written game, ever since I was a kid. He employs so many emotional facets, that tie into real life. The duality of the bad guy, and what is it like to be the bad guy. Anyways back to my topic:

“– I don’t think it’s limited to just the game industry, though.

Itoi: In short, “What does it mean for a bad guy to laugh?” Hmm…

– Please return to the topic of Giygas.”

He was referring directly to the topic of Giygas.

http://earthbound.wikia.com/wiki/Giygas

Poe said on Mar. 28, 2012

I don’t think the interview has a lack of respect for Mr. Itoi – I think it’s a case of a common Japanese phrase or nuance that sounds weird when translated to English. I’ve seen similar cases in other translated shows and interviews.

What is a username? Anybody??? said on May. 3, 2012

“Please return to the topic of Giygas.”
Itoi and his opinion on things. :)

Guigue's Foot said on May. 12, 2012

@Tokens Ness didn’t die at the end of EarthBound silly. Who you speak of is Giygas/Guigue(they’re one and the same, so you can call Guigue giygas if ya want or call Giygas Guigue) Maybe you didn’t bother to watch the ending cutscene where the spirits of Ness and his friends return to their rightful bodies and such.

darkjeroid said on May. 20, 2012

I have a question that may be stupid to ask. If this is a child’s game how come Itoi put in Giygas a disturbing Final Boss that would probably tramitize the player?

NONEOFYOBUSSINES said on Sep. 26, 2012

GIYGAS. THE LEADING CAUSE OF NIGHTMARES IN AMERICA

D said on Oct. 21, 2012

Giygas is illuminati.This game is based off free masons but it teaches you to be strong and not to give up faith.

[...] called the “Devil’s Machine.”  A common fan theory, which stems from an interview with the game’s chief writer, Shigasato Itoi, claims that when the party goes into the past [...]

[…] what he saw to be “a direct attack on my brain”. As he spoke about creating Giygas in an interview, he stated, “s like a living being that deserves love. That part is the breast of Hisako […]


 
 

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