Tips for Buying EarthBound

August 14th, 2018 | EarthBound, Smash Bros. | 2 Comments

The SSB Ultimate Direct last week surprised everyone with new characters from the Castlevania, Metroid, and Donkey Kong series, along with a deluge of other news. Did you miss it? Watch it all here:

In EarthBound news, the Ramblin’ Evil Mushroom is an item now! And it does exactly what you’d expect — it reverses people’s controls >:)

I’m looking forward to using the evil lil’ mush to mess with people~

– Poe

 

August 8th, 2018 | EarthBound, Videos | 6 Comments

EarthBound? More like NOT bound… to Earth.

14-year-old Ronnie Doyle and a group of high school kids from Earth to Sky Calculus recently launched a copy of EarthBound from California to the edge of space with a helium balloon. You can watch the game’s amazing journey in this video:

This was thanks to Ronnie’s grandfather, who made a donation to the Earth to Sky Calculus group and allowed Ronnie to send an object “smaller than a lunchbox” into space. And the game still works!

Thanks to Chris Kohler over at Kotak for breaking the news 🙂

– Poe

 

July 31st, 2018 | EarthBound, Hacking, Uncommon Knowledge, Videos | 9 Comments

A YouTuber named Chaz recently conducted a full-scale investigation to figure out why the Mole Playing Rough in Dusty Dunes Desert appears where it does 100% of the time. He dove deep into EarthBound’s complicated code and explained everything in this easy-to-understand video:

The video also contains information on the Shattered Man and Invisible Man glitches, random vs scripted battles, and event flags. It’s very interesting!

– Poe

 

July 2nd, 2018 | Audio Stuff, Hacking, MOTHER 3 | 14 Comments

Back when we worked on the MOTHER 3 fan translation 10 years ago, we had reidman and Meeellla record themselves saying “Ready, set, go!” for an audio clip that plays in Chapter 4. If you don’t recall, it plays when Lucas and a character named OJ are about to do a rock-paper-scissors sort of game.

Original:

Recently, a fan named Karmageddon asked the official English voice actress for Lucas in the Super Smash Bros. games to say “Ready, set, go!” to be used as an alternate voice clip. He also recorded himself as the voice for OJ. Here’s what it sounds like in action:

New:

For anyone who’s interested, I’ve made an alternate patch that includes this new voice clip here. Only the voice is changed – everything else is the same as Version 1.2 I think.

There are instructions in the zip file on how to use the patch – basically you just take the main fan translation patcher, replace the “mother3.ups” file in it with this new file (and rename the new file mother3.ups), and then run the patcher like normal. If you have difficulties with it, though, fellow fans can help you out here.

Also, speaking of alternate patches, if you haven’t tried it out yet, a fan did a script rewrite of the translation a few years ago to make things sound more natural. If you missed it, read more here!

I should note that if any translation patch updates get released in the future, these alternate versions will probably stay separate. But if you’re a diehard fan of MOTHER 3 and want to try the game with some slight differences, these might be right up your alley!

 

June 27th, 2018 | EarthBound, MOTHER 3, Smash Bros. | 5 Comments

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate got a big feature during Nintendo’s E3 Direct. ALL Smash fighters, from all the games, are in Smash Ultimate. Ness and Lucas’ final smashes also got an upgrade:

Wowowow! Paula and Poo in Smash! Now the whole Chosen Four is there (with Jeff as an assist trophy). And the bigger surprise is Kumatora and Boney joining Lucas in his final smash. It’s the first time we’ve seen official 3D models for them and they look really good!

I’ve also seen people theorizing that Duster might be an assist trophy, given Jeff’s role in Smash. Seeing Duster make use of his thief tools would be really neat.

You can devour more Smash info, including crisp, high-res pics and videos, over on the official site.

– Poe

 

May 23rd, 2018 | Audio Stuff, EarthBound, MOTHER 1, MOTHER 3 | 4 Comments

The Super Soul Bros. band has done a lot of great game music covers over the years, and if you’ve been to any conventions or seen any Fangamer events, you’ve probably seen them in action. They’re a lot of fun and put lots of energy into their music.

They recently released an album dedicated to EarthBound/MOTHER series music that I absolutely love, so I wanted to make sure I shared it here.

You got your EarthBound stuff of course:

And a good amount of MOTHER 3 stuff:

And even some MOTHER 1 music:

If you like their stuff, you can buy the full album here or even just get individual tracks that you’re especially fond of. They’re cool dudes that went from EarthBound fans to an actual touring band like the Runaway Five! Except I don’t think they shut off robots.

 

April 26th, 2018 | Videos | 12 Comments

The Angry Video Game Nerd recently posted an episode about EarthBound – and it’s his longest episode yet at over 40 minutes. It’s got a nice mix of insightful commentary and valid criticism, along with a look at various series details and fan theories. But more than anything, it’s offers a neat view at how EarthBound looks to retro gamers who missed out on it 23 years ago:

It sounds like he originally had no plans to do an EarthBound review, but while playing it on the Super NES Mini last year he decided to do some sort of general video about the game. It then transformed into a giant project that spanned months of work. Here’s his description about it:

This video has been in the works since last October (2017), when I first started the playing Earthbound on the mini SNES Classic. It wasn’t originally meant to be an AVGN episode. It was for myself.

I never played much of Earthbound before, but it’s a game that always appealed to me. Yes, even when I saw the ads in Nintendo Power. The only reason I never played it much was because I was too busy with Final Fantasy 3 (6) and Chrono Trigger. SNES has so many amazing masterpieces, it’s almost impossible to play them all. But after more than 20 years, I owed it to myself to complete Earthbound.

The gameplay took me 45 and a half hours. After recording it all, I decided to put all those hours to good use, and make a video. At first, I didn’t think it would be an AVGN episode, but more of a casual “James review”. But I realized there were plenty of wacky moments in the game that the Nerd could react to.

If you’re wondering about the characters’ names such as “Milly” and “Lilly”, my 4 year old daughter named them.

To write the script, I had to search through 45+ hours of game footage, to confirm and describe accurately all the moments that I wanted to comment on. Then came a bunch of researching facts, and developing my own personal theories. It turned out, I had a ton to say. It became the longest single-part AVGN episode, by total accident (running nearly 40 minutes). On top of that, I couldn’t resist adding a dream scene with laborious green screen effects. In total, counting gameplay, writing, shooting, editing, the entire video took 137.5 hours to finish, making it the 2nd most time-consuming AVGN episode to date. (Episode 139: Mega Man still barely holds the record at 138.5 hours). Ironically Earthbound was meant to be a break for myself, but it turned into a major task, as all my other projects screeched to a halt.

I had fun with this video and am happy with it, but now that it’s finally done, I hope to get back to my personal long-term projects such as a film and a book I am trying to write. But I will always be jumping back and forth with AVGN episodes. I’m always trying to keep those coming.

Come to think of it, a lot of the info in the video came from research I did for Starmen.Net and EarthBound Central!

 

March 31st, 2018 | EarthBound, Images, Merchandise | 4 Comments

A longtime EarthBound fan and fan artist named Shane Hunt recently launched a Kickstarter for a book focused on his art creations:

Things are looking good for the book too: it’s already 200% funded and Shane reports that the hard work on the book has already been completed. Here are some samples it’ll feature:

It’s cool seeing fellow fans use their professional areas of expertise to celebrate the series even after all these years. So if this sounds like something you’d enjoy, check out the page here!

 

March 14th, 2018 | EarthBound, Videos | 13 Comments

A couple months back, Nintendo released a miniature Super NES box with a whole bunch of games on it, including EarthBound. I forget how many times EarthBound has been re-released by this point, but it’s actually quite common for re-released games to get minor changes that most people never notice.

Part of my job involves hunting for these changes though, so I was eager to see what might’ve changed with this latest release. After some technical hurdles, the PK Hack guys and I were able to find a handful of differences, two of which involved special cut-scene data. These two difference turned out to be minor animation changes that were also present in the Wii U Virtual Console release. You can see those tiny differences here:

Note that these were actual code/data changes – someone had to go into EarthBound’s programming and figure out the precise bytes to change, which probably wasn’t an easy feat. Nintendo’s custom emulator also tries to automatically reduce flashing on its own, but I guess these cut scenes needed to be fixed manually for some reason.

I don’t know if they other changes to the SNES Mini release have been figured out yet, but I assume they’re just as minor. If I find anything out though, I’ll be sure to share it here.

If you’re interested in these sorts of “quiet game changes that no one really notices”, here are a few other examples I’ve written about:

I try to document changes like these for my articles and books – my Zelda book covers every re-release of the game and how the game has quietly changed, for example, and my EarthBound book lists all kinds of easy-to-overlook changes that have appeared in MOTHER 2 over the years. Game changes are fun to document but are hard to keep up with!

 

December 12th, 2017 | EarthBound, Merchandise, MOTHER 1, MOTHER 3 | 13 Comments

Brian Connor (aka level 1 chef) and friends have been planning the ultimate MOTHER series cookbook for some time, and now it’s about to become a reality! They posted a Kickstarter for the project yesterday, and it’s already about to hit its initial goal.

Here are some sample pics:

The project has some stretch goals too:

I’m particularly looking forward to the Moonside recipes. I hope they involve black lights or glow in the dark frosting (if that even exists?)

This is definitely a passion project similar similar to to when I wanted to start my Legends of Localization books but couldn’t quite get them off the ground. I hope you’ll consider helping Brian and his pals get their dream off the ground too!

 

Recent Comments

  • Poe: (We were switching servers on Monday and I think a comment from this post was lost in the move. Sorry to whoever posted that lost comment!!)
  • Pierre: I’d love to see them add Porky in his Spider Mech or Heavily Armed Porky as a playable character. Just shrink him down a bit too,...
  • JeffShotFirst: YESSSSSS!
  • Leeaux: Is that a Poe I spy sneaking in a post? I’m pumped for the Ramblin Evil Mushroom! I’m always excited when they add anything...
  • Arturo: Somebody needs to add the Skyrunner theme to the video. Or the Mother title theme when it is in space.
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