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Tips for Buying EarthBound

April 4th, 2009 | Images, MOTHER 1

I have an especially clear memory of kid me sitting in a lawn chair in the front yard one afternoon in 1990. I remember turning to a Pak Watch or some similar section in the latest issue of Nintendo Power and seeing a small article about something coming soon called “EarthBound”. By this time, I had still never played an RPG yet, but when the article talked about a modern setting and PSI powers and kids my age going on a big adventure, my interest was piqued. But little did I know what the future had in store for me and this series 😛

So, here now is that article. If you were to follow the history of the franchise and fandom outside of Japan, this article is probably one of the earliest, if not THE earliest things there is. This was in Nintendo Power issue 19, the November/December issue with Chip n Dale Rescue Rangers Mega Man 3 on the cover. Thanks to Darien for the much better scan!

Barring any last-minute changes of plans, huh? 🙁

It’s a shame the game was dropped shortly after 🙁 This awesome article goes into more detail about all that stuff, if you’re interested.


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29 Comments to EarthBound Zero in Nintendo Power

KaoruArika said on Apr. 4, 2009

It reminds me that I should scan that article about EB0 and EB64 that a certain Nintendo Magazine from here (Mexico) published back in 2000/2001

James said on Apr. 4, 2009

“Barring any last minute changes of plans…”

Man, Nintendo has been ****ing with EarthBound fans since the very beginning.

Deiphobus said on Apr. 4, 2009

you should go back in time and tell yourself as a kid that you’ll be setting up a website dedicated to this game, fan translate and hack the third game of series spending over a year living in the game’s code, and become the grand poobah of the cultists.

Darien said on Apr. 4, 2009

I have that NP around here somewhere. If I can find it, I’ll get you a better scan.

Jean said on Apr. 4, 2009

I’m confused as to why they said it’s like Final Fantasy instead of Dragon Quest (II, specifically, since it it had three characters to control), since that’s obviously what it’s battle system parodies. Oh well.

That reminds me of how I saw the prevew of Tales of Phantasia in Nintendo Power long before I got to play it fantranslated years later. It was actually a library copy, and I cut out those pages because I liked the art so much. *cough* I was a bad little kid. >_>

Darien said on Apr. 4, 2009

Very likely they said it was like Final Fantasy because Final Fantasy had very recently been released when this preview was printed, and Dragon Warrior II wouldn’t be released until the following month.

queens of the fart age said on Apr. 4, 2009

i remember i was (living in japan) when (the original mother) was released

i (spent hours replaying it) and (bought every guide and soundtrack)

in (1992) i (met shigesato itoi for the first time). (he) (told me all about his recent dedication to gardening) and (the wonders of botany)

IWontGetOvertheDam said on Apr. 4, 2009

It just wasn’t meant to be…

Dan said on Apr. 4, 2009

Note it’s “Earth Bound” rather “EarthBound”

Leirin said on Apr. 4, 2009

QotFA, that’s really awesome. O_O

It’s somehow extremely cool to see stuff like MOTHER and MOTHER3 appear in English-magazine form, printed like that, you know? It’s almost strange. It really is a shame the game never had an official release in the US… also, StarTropics down there just reminds me that they changed Mike’s Yo-Yo into “Star”. 😛

Millhouse said on Apr. 4, 2009

My god. Chip n Dale, rescue rangers… Good times…
Over here, they’re called ‘Chip und Chap: Ritter des Rechts’, and I stil know the theme song by heart

Ah, yes, the don’t make cartoons like that anymore

ZombiePaul said on Apr. 4, 2009

I remember reading this and thinking it was kind of cool, then I totally forgot about it. When I got EarthBound when it was released I saw this a little while later I was so choked that there was another game in the series I couldn’t play.
I only have a small handful of issues left though. Most of my collection died far too young from water damage. If I can find it I’ll get you a better scan if Darien can’t find their’s. 🙂

Stuffgamer1 said on Apr. 4, 2009

I was one and a half years old when this issue was published, so I obviously didn’t read it at the time. I have read it since then, as I still have a massive (but sadly incomplete) collection of N-Power.

The game really didn’t get a tenth the coverage Earthbound later did. It did get a small mention in an “only in Japan” or similarly-titled article later on, though. Not sure which issue.

Belasted said on Apr. 4, 2009

Is that StarTropics game any good?

Mato said on Apr. 4, 2009

Let’s just say that if EarthBound hadn’t been released, I’d be running a StarTropics site right now instead 😛

Darien said on Apr. 4, 2009

I downloaded the Virtual Console port of StarTropics more or less the day it came out. It takes me back, it does. Especially since I still completely suck at it. Holy moley that game’s hard.

steinmitz said on Apr. 5, 2009

It’s interesting that other issues from around the same time treated the game almost as if it was ready to hit store shelves in a matter of weeks . Issue 24 ( with Vice Project Doom on the cover )has a profile of one of Nintendo’s game counselors in the Counselor’s Corner section , and lists his ” greatest NES accomplishment ” : first GPC to complete Dragon Warrior 2 and Earthbound . Also , many of the Player’s Poll cards from that time included Earthbound on its list of NES games , which ( I think ) almost always only included those games which were already out ,or atleast had a definite certainty of being released .

Anonymous said on Apr. 5, 2009

If only that really happened. Then maybe, the MOTHER series would’ve gotten more recognition.

Robert said on Apr. 6, 2009

I wonder if this had been finished then would we have a Earthbound 3?(Mother 3)

EntropicLobo said on Apr. 7, 2009

For the record, StarTropics and its sequel are both great. Especially the first game, it has a rhythm all its own.

I was looking forward to Earth Bound, but never really thought any more of it until the SNES game’s release a few years down the road. There are some notorious games previewed in NP, that’ve caused the underground scene a lot of contention for many years ;).

LucasTizma said on May. 3, 2009

@Robert: I like to think that would have been the case. 🙁

Komaru said on Jun. 14, 2009

Oh nice-
They even got SimCity in there too.
Double taunted.

LightningLuigi said on Sep. 22, 2009

It’s so shameful that the game we should be calling EarthBound was never released. The NES generation was a bit before my time, but I really think I would have liked EarthBound had I had the chance to play it.

If it had been released, almost everything we know about the eries would be different. Mother 2 would be EarthBound 2: Giegue Streikes Back (maybe not having the name “Giegue” in the canon was for the best). Mother 1+2 likely would have been localized as EarthBound 1+2, and, just maybe…EarthBound 3…

Tentelumper said on Oct. 23, 2009

Why did this preview (of Mother) market the EarthBound series then the entire marketing campaign (This game stinks) of Earthbound (Mother 2)? It boggles the mind…

Booo95 said on Nov. 30, 2009

I’d just like to note that it was actually issue 18 that was the November issue, and Megaman 3 was the cover. Chip and Dale Rescue Rangers was the October issue, which didn’t include the look into 1991.

One thing that would have been fun seeing is Sim City on the NES rather than SNES though.

doenothaveanaccount said on Jan. 27, 2010


doenothaveanaccount said on Jan. 27, 2010

(sorry comp screwd up)

I-I have that issue!

afranshiachar said on Mar. 24, 2010

turn page 89.

NP said on Oct. 30, 2010

I have this issue too!


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