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Tips for Buying EarthBound

May 31st, 2013 | EarthBound, Videos

Back when the Starmen.net/Fangamer guys and I did the live Wii U MOTHER 2 stream, we noticed that some bright, flashy animations were “fuzzier” on the Wii U version than in the original Super Famicom/Super NES releases.

I’ve recorded a couple samples for comparison – it’s hard to see in this video but maybe you can tell:

Only a few of the PSI animations have this animation change, though – most of them remain unchanged. I also noticed it happen when the screen starts rapidly changing and flashing after you’ve gotten all eight melodies, just before you go to Magicant.

Apparently this sort of change is standard for Virtual Console games? I wouldn’t know since I rarely play any VC games 😛

Anyway, assuming this is company policy, we can probably assume this same thing will be done to EarthBound’s bright, flashy animations too.


Other Related Posts:


109 Comments to MOTHER 2 Wii U Animation Changes

Pally said on May. 31, 2013

These changes are indeed normal. When i played Super Mario RPG on VC, some of the animations (Flame Wall was the one I saw) were lessened. I think it might be done to darken some of the lighting effects and perhaps prevent the risk of people having a seizure?

Pigmask #372529 said on May. 31, 2013

Oh, I don’t like that. It just looks like they turned on onion skinning.

Anonymous said on May. 31, 2013

Are you guys going to do a live stream of EarthBound when it comes out on Wii U?

Felix said on May. 31, 2013

They did the same thing on 3ds VC for the Zelda Oracle games (for example, when you create a new game). It looks goofy in comparison, but I believe it is for the greater good. Even myself, when ennemies use PSI attacks against you in EB, it hurts my eyes at times. I’m ok with this.

Covarr said on May. 31, 2013

Animation changes to reduce risk of seizures are par for the course with Virtual Console games. I don’t know if Nintendo requires that of 3rd party VC games, but at the very least I’ve seen quite a few of their own games do that.

What’s more? At least on the Wii, these are typically patched at runtime by modified emulators. AFAIK they’re not modifying the roms themselves for this, for whatever reason.

FlyingManCourage said on May. 31, 2013

I hate this sort of stuff. I mean I absolutely hate it. If you want to make changes for the benefit of a small percent of the population, make it an option. An OPTION is ALWAYS the superior solution.

There’s no reason to get rid of milk because some people are lactose intolerant.

Chivi-chivik said on May. 31, 2013

Well, if it’s for prevent seizures and stuff, it’s completely okay. I prefer this than getting a seizure, really!

Ness1985 said on May. 31, 2013

I don’t like the change, but it’s not a big enough change to make me complain.

ncle_tony said on May. 31, 2013

well i believe with capture cards some animations do fade

Someone Else said on May. 31, 2013


Making it an option wouldn’t make any sense. Would you really just ask someone “Hey, would you like a tiny portion of the game to look very slightly different?”?
You can’t expect an end-user to always be aware of what they’re being asked. It’s very possible to interpret different graphics options as something akin to “Original” and “Updated” modes, like in Cave Story on WiiWare for example. If there actually is no difference except for two spells, it’s just going to cause unnecessary confusion.
This change isn’t big enough to warrant a selectable option. There’s hardly any difference between the two anyway.

Anonymous said on May. 31, 2013

Come on, guys, it’s not a big deal.

Kurausukun said on May. 31, 2013

Oh, wow, that’s pretty noticeable. I don’t think there were any epilepsy problems with Earthbound, at least no more than a normal game, so why bother changing it? It’s actually more drastic than I thought.

The Apple Kid said on May. 31, 2013

It’s not like they’re sucking all the life out of the game guys, there is really nothing to complain about.

357 said on May. 31, 2013

This is a company standard it has happened with super mario rpg and paper mario

FlyingManCourage said on May. 31, 2013

Not a big deal? This is ABSOLUTELY a big deal. They are changing the spell animations of an RPG. Don’t give me that. If you don’t care, that’s fine. All the more reason for an option. Since that would cover you “I don’t care” folks as well.

Here’s what I can’t stand. This constant insinuation that everybody has to adhere to everybody’s else’s preferences in this world. GET OF YOUR HORSES. Options are ALWAYS better. Period. End of story. Don’t even get me started on this you are all out of line. I guess we should all take away freedom, too since some people can’t handle it and end up on drugs or homeless. Stop it. Options are superior. That is not debatable.

EarthBoundnerd199X said on May. 31, 2013

So I guess instead of “Fuzzy Pickles” this is “Fuzzy Animations”

FlyingManCourage said on May. 31, 2013


Option: Covers EVERYBODY. Folks who don’t care about seizures and those who do. Folks who care about the graphical changes and those who don’t care. EVERYBODY.

No option: Covers one or the other. Seizure/graphics preferences are ignored on some level.

Your arguments:
You shouldn’t care about changes because I don’t. – Erroneous
You should care about seizures because I do – Erroneous
3. People can’t handle the option/isn’t practical – Erroneous

“ERRONEOUS! Erroneous on both counts!” -Vince Vaughn

RandomGuardian said on May. 31, 2013

Meh the psi rockin won’t make my eyes bleed everytime I see it, so that’s a plus. The starstorm looks sort of bad though. Overall I would give it a IDONTGIVEACARP out of 10, would play again.

ThiefOfTime said on May. 31, 2013

RUINED FOREVER!!!!!!!!!!!!

In all seriousness, I get why they did this. Not a huge difference. Heck, I actually kinda like how PK Rockin looks on the Wii U version.

AdmiralCrunch said on May. 31, 2013

It looks like all they did was put something into the emulator that at certain times blended frames of animation together. That way if you had animation that would be red on one frame and blue on the next, you’ll just get a couple of frames of purple. An unintended side effect would be fuzzyness (get it?) when the effect is active. Considering the challenge of outright rewriting sections of likely very obscure, possibly lost code, this seems like a clever and very reasonable solution. Given the lawsuit happy culture we live in and how legal issues likely played a role in slowing the re-release of earthbound, this seems like an acceptable compromise.

Someone Else said on May. 31, 2013


What the heck.

You can’t just say “put in an option”, you have to make considerations on where the option is, and how it will be presented to the user.

Will there be two versions listed in the eShop? That’s a bit overkill, so probably not a good idea.

So, will the shop ask you which version to download when you select it? What if you change your mind, are you then stuck?

Okay, so then will there be an alert popping up and a selection to choose when you load up the game? This can be quite alarming to a user who doesn’t understand/doesn’t realise what’s happening, especially since it wouldn’t show up on any other downloaded app. It will make for a lot of confused customers indeed.

So, will the option present itself anytime you select Ness to use PK Rockin Gamma? That would just make it seem like there are two versions of the spells, and cause more confusion. What is the difference between these spells? Does one do more damage?
This would also involve altering the game code itself, which is not sticking to the true goal of the Virtual Console.

Basically, this is a long way of telling you that there is no elegant solution. They changed it because epilepsy is a reasonable concern, and they want to minimise any potential triggers in their game.

And if you prefer the orginial effect? Then play the original version. If you don’t have the original version, then be grateful that Wii U will let you play EB in the first place.

Halloween said on May. 31, 2013

Yeah that’s pretty different. Doesn’t even seem like a SNES effect to me.
But if that’s the ONLY change, I will be very happy (Even though I don’t have a wiiu so I probably won’t be able to buy it…)

Someone Else said on May. 31, 2013

To add to my other posts directed at @FlyingManCourage, I’m not saying that options are a bad thing. I was pretty annoyed when Sonic Gems Collection only contained the US soundtrack for Sonic CD, despite the fact that here in the UK, the original Japanese soundtrack was used in the original Mega CD release. I would have loved an option in Gems Collection to switch soundtracks, and there actually IS an option for this in the Xbox Live remake of Sonic CD.

I’m just saying that any given user will be more likely to understand the difference between “these two versions have two separate soundtracks” than the difference between “two spells look a bit different”. Sonic CD’s separate versions affect the entire game experience and atmosphere, while EarthBound’s changes are really so minor that it’s just not worth the trouble.

FlyingManCourage said on May. 31, 2013


Your argument is completely invalid. By your logic, all games should have closed captions displayed at all times because A) some people are deaf and that is a “reasonable concern” and B) OMG HOW WOUlD WE MAKE AN OPTION AND WHAT WOULD WE DO WITH IT. Clearly, not everybody should be forced to have closed captioning displayed just because some people need it or, to paraphrase your point, some people are too stupid. I’m in full support of having an option for closed captioning in games just as I am in support of having an option to reduce seizure risks. Forcing me to accept displayed CC because “I can still hear it” is out of line.

Original version? I can’t play the original version on the Wii U can I? Most people can’t play the original version without paying hundreds of dollars. That was the whole point of this release, no?

Finally, you can continue to tell me that because YOU THINK this is minor or not a big deal that makes it factual. Or that users would somehow be mystified by the option to change graphics. Should we do away with all display settings (including PC games) because SOME people might get confused? Then we shouldn’t allow people to name their characters or chose their “favorite thing” because that might get confusing. Should we also all be forced to have the same text speed of slow because some people can’t read that fast and it would be too complicated to have some sort of option in the game? Your argument/position is the equivalent of me demanding that the change not be made available to people because seizures aren’t a big deal to me.

Option = Superior

ThiefOfTime said on May. 31, 2013

Everyone who is actually angry about this: please find better things to be angry about than a slightly changed video game animation

FlyingManCourage said on May. 31, 2013

The option is simple. I don’t care where it is:

“Would you like to enable features to reduce risks of seizures? This could affect the appearance of the game.

A) Yes B) No

I’m just going to warn you that if you try to argue that is too complicated I am going to laugh in your face. Fair warning. Another perfect game example is Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2. Should the airport scene have been completely removed because the option might potentially have been confusing? Offending some SOME people was a reasonable concern. Obviously the option was the superior solution. You cannot beat an option. As long as my option doesn’t impede your ability to have an option, I am completely within reason. If my option impedes your ability have an option, I am out of line. Clearly, my position in this instance doesn’t impede your ability have an option. Your position impedes my ability to have an option.

FlyingManCourage said on May. 31, 2013


What a terrible attitude. [sarcasm] Thank goodness we have you to run around the internet dictating what people can discuss and how they can discuss it. [/sarcasm]

ThiefOfTime said on May. 31, 2013


All I’m saying is that this is a very minor change that few would notice if it wasn’t pointed out and you’re blowing it way out of proportion.

Someone Else said on May. 31, 2013


Okay. First of all, if you want to debate without looking like a smug know-it-all, outright saying “Nope, you’re wrong” is not the way to do it. I have some points, and they are definitely valid points. You have some valid points as well, and I can to recognise that. For instance, I found it strange and off-putting when I had to choose between “German subtitles” and “French subtitles” in Super Metroid with no option of “no subtitles” anywhere in sight. That was annoying to me, and I will say that, if Nintendo were going to present the player with that option, they should have included the option for no subtitles too. I would not have been against Nintendo from altering this from the recent 30p release of Super Metroid on the Wii U, either.

I will say that it’s all a matter of opinion on what constitutes a “big deal”. In my case, this change doesn’t matter. Some people will be disappointed, and others will prefer it. I don’t think that many people will agree that it warrants making such a fuss over this, though. Nintendo changed it to be on the safe side.
And even though some people are of the opinion that this is a huge groundbreaking difference in the game, it seems that Nintendo’s opinion is similar to the majority’s opinion: it’s a necessary change and it doesn’t warrent a big fuss. Just change what needs to be changed, and finally relase this game after years and years of anticipation.

FlyingManCourage said on May. 31, 2013

I will debate however I please. If you don’t like how I speak or express myself then don’t talk to me. That is your OPTION. I will not alter my thoughts or expressions to suit you. This is the internet and people will interpret things however they want. I never once resorted to petty name-calling, which is essentially what you have just done. So on that note I will done with this conversation and will leave you to enjoy your immaturity. How’s that for being smug?

ThiefOfTime said on May. 31, 2013


Someone Else said on May. 31, 2013

Sure, suits me. I’ve also realised the futility of this all. Apologies to everyone reading through the comments.

ThiefOfTime said on May. 31, 2013

…yeah, I was kinda smug there too now that I think about it. Sorry mates.

EarthBound015 said on May. 31, 2013

@Someone Else

Thanks for the apology ^_^”

Also, I see it your way. Not that big of a deal. Especially to blow off the handle. I think everyone should be happy that it got released with minimal changes in the first place, but whatever. To each his own.

Douche Mcallister said on May. 31, 2013

For all you people who are complaining, I have just 1 thing to say…
Step back and look at the big picture… WE’RE GETTING EARTHBOUND ON VC!!
Let’s just be happy!!

Anonymous said on May. 31, 2013

I love that one person is being incredibly abrasive in this comment section and calling the other people immature when they’re not griping over a completely insignificant change to a twenty year old video game.

And yet you call the other calm, rational people immature?

2Sang said on May. 31, 2013

I’m not going to read any previous comments and am hoping that no one has or will complain about this. The last thing we need now is to complain about any minor changes.

Paul said on May. 31, 2013

Changing the spell animations of an RPG to make them less likely to cause seizures won’t make people refuse to buy said RPG. Earthbound is a great game, and changing the spell animations won’t change that.

And that’s all that matters to Nintendo.

LucasPSI said on May. 31, 2013

Am I the only one who thinks this makes the psi look cooler?… Just saying. I hope they do this to Mother 3’s psi if it ever comes to the wii u! 😀

BoingMaster said on May. 31, 2013

Not a huge fan of these changes. Thankfully it’s just for a few and not all of them.

Ringo said on May. 31, 2013

In all seriousness, exactly why are we crying over this anyways? So two animations are changed to make it easier on the eyes and protect against modern medical lawsuits. No, they were not even changed, were they. They had the frames blur a bit, most likely with an outside code, leaving the rom data exactly how it was, all so we can enjoy the game.

Sounds like a fine and acceptible change to me.

Radic said on May. 31, 2013

I barely even saw a change in the animation. I seriously don’t think this is a big deal, and I’m pretty sure the majority thinks this way. The fact some people are considering turning down this virtual console offer over one small change, really proves we can’t be satisfied.

Just be thankful this is coming in the USA and Europe, like we’ve been waiting for for a good long while.

RobertHMayfire said on Jun. 1, 2013

Is there an option where I can fuzz out the trolling please? 😉 Well, I’m off to do something that isn’t fuzzy graphics debating. 😀

Darien said on Jun. 1, 2013

It’s pretty obvious in the comparison video, but I honestly don’t think I’d have noticed if you hadn’t pointed it out. And it’s definitely a better plan from Nintendo’s part than being seizure cowboys.

Was that invalid of me? I sure hope not.

Pengo said on Jun. 1, 2013

I can’t see the video…can someone give me the video URL?

DearFlyingManCourage said on Jun. 1, 2013

Dear FlyingManCourage,
Please stop posting your opinion no one cares about on every post here and being a smug, cocky prick.
Sincerely, everybody

JFDP13 said on Jun. 1, 2013

FlyingManCourage, i’m with you at 100%! >=)

gustr15 said on Jun. 1, 2013

That is really weird.

Mi5terDNA said on Jun. 1, 2013


You’re a total asshole and its people like you who make the EB Community look bad. You’re also a poor debater at that… We’re all ecstatic that EB is getting a re-release in any form; minor changes to benefit a fair amount of people sensitive to flashing lights is hardly something to post 10 times complaining about.

PK Derp said on Jun. 1, 2013

Wow I really don’t like that, it doesn’t look like the animation was reduced, it just looks like they made it more transparent, not fuzzy. But oh well, if it means getting Earthbound released then it really doesn’t matter. 🙂

Geez FlyingManCourage I’ve never seen that side of you before, I thought you were nice…..
I understand where you’re coming from and what you say about a simple yes/no question is a valid point but you don’t need to be all in your face and rude about it. We are all mature here so treat your fellow Mother fans in kind. The Starmen community is wildy regarded as pleasant, friendly and inviting. So please be nicer especially since this is a time for rejoicing, not complaining; and with the release of Earthbound, more people are going to start joining the fanbase and we need to offer them a nice first impression.

Ailure said on Jun. 1, 2013

Animation changes like the one done in Earthbound is actually the norm for virtual console releases. Sometimes the change is done within the emulator itself that is used in virtual console, rather than the ROM itself. I actually heard a rumor that the virtual console emulators tries to detect flashing and reduce it themselves.

Personally i think that Nintendo’s emulators are at best ok, and you’re better off running the games on a 99.99% accurate emulator such as higen if you truly want the original experience and getting the actual cart is out of the question due to costs.

EpicJackman said on Jun. 1, 2013

Gee FlyingManCourage, you don’t have to be a whiny brat over a COUPLE of changes in a nearly 25 year old game. At least we’re getting it in the first place…

Chivi-chivik said on Jun. 1, 2013

Let’s calm down everybody! Let’s forget about this little incident and let’s keep going with our lives.

Anonymous said on Jun. 1, 2013

yo dudes fmc withdrew a long time ago so there’s no need to keep resorting to personal attacks to make him feel bad

He’s been around for a while, so we should know that he’s normally friendly and level-headed. I’m not sure what stick was up his ass yesterday, maybe his grandma died recently or he just got evicted or something, but that doesn’t change the fact that he makes a valid point, regardless of how poorly he presented it.

Either way, it’s over, so stop kicking him while he’s down and acting like you’re paragons of the EB community when you’re essentially acting the same way by ganging up on him and calling him things like “asshole” and “smug, cocky prick”

PK Derp said on Jun. 1, 2013

I didn’t call him anything but rude. I even brought up that he made valid points. All I said was that I thought he was nice usually and to refrain from being rude in the future, especially at a time for celebration. Even if he was going through something bad, he has to consider that the person he’s talking to could be going through the same thing or even worse. So just treat people in kind. I hardly think that qualifies as a “personal attack”

Anonymous said on Jun. 1, 2013

and “yo dudes” hardly qualifies as “yo pk derp”

PK Derp said on Jun. 1, 2013

I never said it did but “yo dudes” is a generalisation. Since I was one of the people that responded to FMC, that includes me. Anyway besides one or two that went a little too far, no one really “personally attacked” him, they were just asking him to be nicer like I was. And everything I said can be used for them as well as it’s the same situation. Anyway lets not argue, ok 🙂

lolololol said on Jun. 1, 2013

At least it’s EarthBound.

September said on Jun. 1, 2013

I do get why they did it, but that doesn’t mean I like it. One of the things I really like about EarthBound is these bright and flashy animations. But, I guess not all people are going to be able to play and enjoy the game if they stay, so… meh. Well, that wouldn’t really stop me from getting+playing the game anyway.

refat17 said on Jun. 1, 2013

Did they do this for when you beat Gyigas because that’s the thing that hurt my eyes. I was so happy, but the flashing hurt my eyes.

(0_0) said on Jun. 1, 2013

There shouldn’t be an option because there are some people who think that they will not have a seizure and do. Would you rather not have Earthbound on virtual console, or would you rather have the animation blurred and toned down?

John said on Jun. 1, 2013

Love how around the time EB came out in the US was when I was experiencing seizures yet never had any once I played EB the first time. :O

Vanasto said on Jun. 1, 2013

I think this is Nintendo’s best way of avoiding lawsuits – there is no option given because they don’t want to draw attention to the original games, with thousands of copies still out there, that have the potential to cause epileptic seizures. Thinking pessimistically (as a lawyer for a large corporation might), somebody could potentially exploit the seizure-inducing parts of the original versions for the purpose of filing a lawsuit and getting some easy cash… It’s too bad I don’t have epilepsy! (kidding)

SomeUser said on Jun. 1, 2013

I really don’t care. I think it looks cooler for the most part.

KyoZaber said on Jun. 1, 2013

Meh… As long as EarthBound is still released on the VC, I’m willing to give on an animation lightened up to help those prone to seizures.

It just makes the original cartridge that much more collectible. 😀

I’m still looking forward to this release with great enthusiasm.

PLOK said on Jun. 1, 2013

See? Called it. No matter what, new Earthbound fans will complain about something. America and Europe could get an exclusive collection of all three games,and they’d still pretend like they’re jipped. I didn’t even notice the different after watching the video until I re-watched it.

DJMankiewicz said on Jun. 2, 2013

Hmm, not as severe as I might have thought. It appears that rather than alter the game and the animations directly, they simply altered the way the emulator handles certain visual calls.

So the animations are all present, the effects are still there, they are just “washed out” a bit. I can’t say it’s better, but I can say it’s acceptable, especially in light of a desire to make sure the game can be fully enjoyed by the photo epileptic members of the population. So with that said, I suspect the content of the US version will be completely unaltered except for this emulation based changes as well. I suspect not a single note of the music will be altered, and that’s great. The Skyrunner song is too good to replace with some other thing (or cut entirely in favor of silence).

DJMankiewicz said on Jun. 2, 2013

Some people are too pessimistic regarding lawsuits. I really doubt anyone’s going to show up banging on Nintendo’s door because of something like this. Nintendo is just trying to prevent a problem. Yes, they recently had to include warnings built into a lot of Gamecube and GBA games, and the DS and Wii had the warnings built into the startup, but I doubt there’s a bunch of money grubbing epileptics on the loose just waiting to cash in (contrary to popular belief, having a severe handicap isn’t all that great or advantageous).

dr3D said on Jun. 2, 2013

Fuzzy, heh. How intresting…

The Apple Kid said on Jun. 2, 2013

@FlyingManCourage Calm down. Is an option better? Sometimes. Is it always (<-Key Word)the best way to go? Nope. Let's be serious here, we have begged, pleaded, cried, fought, and worked to get Earthbound on the VC. Are we really going to rage about a minor detail that doesn't effect the story or gameplay? It's like when you get a gift with a minor deviation, then you try to make the person who gave you this gift feel bad. Wo is really being immature here?

Earthbounder said on Jun. 2, 2013

Sorry if this sounds dumb but why are their names spelled like that?

PK Derp said on Jun. 2, 2013

@Earthbounder That’s Mother 2, not Earthbound, I think it had a lower character limit than Earthbound because they expect Japanese players to use Japanese characters to spell the names. That or Mother 2 handles english letters differently to Earthbound.

Someone Else said on Jun. 2, 2013

If that’s the save file they were using for their streamed playthrough, then I guess Mato wouldn’t have wanted to use katakana to name them, but instead chose to give ’em silly names in the normal alphabet. Since in Japanese you can spell out one syllable for each kana, the limit in the Japanese version is a measly four characters, which is ample to name them something using Japanese, but not so much in English.

Co-Wink-Key-Dink Inc said on Jun. 2, 2013

I wish they did not change it, I felt the battles looked more intense with the animations brighter.

Radic said on Jun. 2, 2013

“PLOK said on Jun. 1, 2013
See? Called it. No matter what, new Earthbound fans will complain about something. America and Europe could get an exclusive collection of all three games,and they’d still pretend like they’re jipped. I didn’t even notice the different after watching the video until I re-watched it.”

I agree with this 100%. People need to just calm down and be more thankful and appreciative. We all just need to eat the porridge that was given to us, just because they put a little less brown sugar in it than the first time doesn’t make it bad.

PK Derp said on Jun. 2, 2013

@Radic I agree as well and great analogy Haha 🙂

Radic said on Jun. 2, 2013

i think people will be over it when the game is finally here. 😆 And who knows? Maybe this change is only for Japan? What if it is an option here?

Kaabii said on Jun. 2, 2013

let’s hope it’s an option, Radic.

Anonymous said on Jun. 2, 2013

Does anyone else think that the new animations look better? And in any case, what does it matter? It doesn’t change the experience whatsoever.

Justin said on Jun. 2, 2013

Is there seriously a raging argument about how unfair it is that an animation has been tweaked to keep epileptics safe? Seriously?

METC said on Jun. 2, 2013


Reggie Fils-Aime said on Jun. 2, 2013

We have recently received feedback that someone was upset with the changes to the spell animations in our upcoming re-release of Earthbound for the Wii U Virtual Console.

I have just completed an emergency conference call with Iwata-sama, and we have determined that we will not release the game because of the offense we have caused. We are sorry for the inconvenience.

Pep said on Jun. 2, 2013

Goodness gracious.

Midna said on Jun. 2, 2013


Seems legit.

anonymoose said on Jun. 2, 2013

FlyingManCourage you are literally the biggest baby

johnr754 said on Jun. 2, 2013


not another “Andouts at E3” incident where mato closes the comments

Northern Wind said on Jun. 3, 2013

@Someone Else

I think what @FlyingManCourage was trying to say was simply put in the option in the menus, quite like Smash Bros had the Deflicker switch.

I as well see this as the superior option. Changing a small detail about something as precious to the childhoods of so many people (both Japanese and in the US) may seem inconsequential to most, but to the few it actually matters to it can be the difference between reliving the beautiful memories they once had and looking at a cheap knock-off that is incapable of fully taking them back.

The fact of the matter is that people don’t like change, myself included, and I believe it’s a shame that effects within the game were changed to suit a small percentage of the population. I agree with @FlyingManCourage because I know that this change being such a hard and fast one, without a switch to turn it on or off, can and will come off as an insult to people’s memories of them playing this game for the first time, especially because of how much of the game revolved around its bright colors and self-reliant spunkiness.

In toning down Earthbound in particular the issue becomes one of memorial integrity and what parts of it constituted inescapably important aspects of the game itself. To some, the vivid colors in these abilities could have been their inspiration to start painting, to others the experience isn’t complete without the vividness of it all in tact.

An option is a much happier medium because those who truly NEED Earthbound to be as they remember it will have the ability to keep it the way it was… whereas those who NEED the graphics toned down can also have that… and finally those who have never played it can determine which graphical setting they like more for themselves, without being forced to experience it one way or another for the first time.

Northern Wind said on Jun. 3, 2013

Also, @TheAppleKid, if this is a gift, then why are we paying for it?

Someone Else said on Jun. 3, 2013

@Northern Wind

I can see what you’re saying. What you’re saying makes sense, and I can totally understand that someone could feel this way. However, I still think that Nintendo made a perfectly good decision in this case.
I think the people who value the game being a perfect 1:1 replica of the original experience aren’t in the majority, and probably already have the means to experience the original anyway.
Most people just wanna play this game by any means.

Also, when you say “option in the menu” are you talking about the same menu in EarthBound that has the text speed, mono/stereo and window flavour? My problem with that is that each of the options in this menu are entirely standard in RPGs and already understood what they mean and do. I know what “text speed is”, and if I don’t, I can work it out after changing the setting and seeing the difference. “window flavour” changes the look right away, so it makes sense.
But what would this option be labled? “graphical effects on some spells: ON/OFF”? This makes it seem like a much bigger option that it is. Someone might experiment and mess with the setttings, then try a PK Fire, and be all like “I don’t get it, it looks the same”.
They’d have to change the original ROM data to add an option in the menu, too. And this isn’t even taking into account that this is most likely an emulator-generated effect and not from the game itself… so would the game ROM even be able to turn on and off settings from the emulator? (I’m not knowledgeable enough to know if it can or not). It’s just too much trouble. More trouble than it’s worth. Even though, as you rightly pointed out, different aspects of games can have different amount of “worth” to different people.
Maybe I should say, it’s more trouble than Nintendo have reasonably assumed it is worth.

Shannon Carr said on Jun. 3, 2013

They NEED to make a Wii U version of Mother 2. It also
needs to be released in the UK. Mother 2 is one of the greatest games EVER!!!!

Northern Wind said on Jun. 3, 2013

@Someone Else

How about make it say “Epileptic mode: yes/no”? People can handle the truth about these things.

And while you are right about the people who value the game being exactly as it was being in the minority, this is also true of those with epilepsy and they made a special effort in their direction.

The problem could also be fixed in the ROM data, or, if this is getting to be a problem for people in general, perhaps in the Wii-U settings menu? Being able to swap the emulator’s switch for such things on and off by console doesn’t seem like too much to ask. Of course this could easily be achievable by simply entering the coding of the Wii-U’s emulation platform and changing the filter that causes that to happen to an off state, but I am not one for hacking consoles. While you are correct in saying that it seems like too much trouble, our mutual friend is also correct in saying that this was supposed to be about bringing the original experience of earthbound for a lower price to the public eye. I think it’s perfectly reasonable that if Nintendo is going to insist on epilepsy proofing their console that they should at least allow that proofing to be turned off by those who don’t have the condition, so the original experience can be preserved… Am I right?

Max_H said on Jun. 3, 2013

Am I allowed to say that that looks terrible? Why did they do that?

Vukadin said on Jun. 3, 2013

Considering everyone is acting like a prick towards FlyingManCourage, I will fully agree with him.

There is absolutely NO argument/excuse/whatever for them not to add an extra option for those fans who enjoyed older animations nor would it take any hard work.

I feel sorry for FlyingManCourage having to go through this stupid hate.

PK Derp said on Jun. 3, 2013

I think it’s not what FlyingManCourage said but how he said it. I and quite a few people agree with what he said but he didn’t need to be so rude and in your face about it. But I agree, he has had enough hate from it guys, lets just forget about it.

No name said on Jun. 3, 2013

Wow Good sprites.

No name said on Jun. 3, 2013
Alex.Saturn said on Jun. 4, 2013

I do not think a great change, to see the colors maybe some people damaging their eyes, plus we are in modern times could be more dangerous to see all these effects of colors on a large plasma screen.

ejruss25 said on Jun. 5, 2013

Flash Omega burns my eyes MY EYESSSS

DJMankiewicz said on Jun. 6, 2013

There’s no danger to most people. It doesn’t hurt your eyes unless the brightness approaches that of a welding torch or the sun.

Most people are not photo-sensitive or epileptic in general. There is zero danger to most people.

However, a very small percentage of people are epileptic. This is a condition someone has, not something that they’ll just “catch” from watching the wrong episode of pokemon. It’ll be something someone has had to deal with their entire lives. For SOME epileptics, seeing certain patterns of flashing lights triggers an epileptic episode. Strobe lights can trigger it, in fact.

If you have never had a seizure and you’ve seen strobe lights and such on a few occasions, it is safe to say you are in no danger of ever having a seizure due to a light show.

However, for those who ARE affected, it changes how they deal with the world. They must be extra careful to check out every media they consume, or avoid, say, haunted houses or other places where flashing lights may be an issue. For those people, a warning is the least a company can do, and if they go the extra mile and try to prevent those patterns from appearing in their game altogether, then so much the better! They are attempting to make life just a bit easier for a certain percentage of handicapped people, and no one can fault that.

In the past, such as the 1980’s, games had flashing lights all the time. The only thing companies would do is put a photosensitive warning in the game’s manual. These were printed in every single NES manual, so they were consistent. That is all that was done though. I think that at the time they didn’t really believe their flashing lights posed a genuine risk. This all changed when a certain infamous episode of pokemon aired. Unfortunately, poor reporting led people to believe that it affected everyone, or people who were otherwise not epileptic. Not so, it only affected those already photosensitive. For most viewers, it wasn’t an issue. However, Pokemon was popular enough that a significant numbers of photosensitive kids were watching this episode at the same time, and thus got worldwide attention. From here out, much more care was taken by Nintendo, and later others, to avoid flashing light patterns altogether in their games. A lawsuit in America came later, which resulted in Nintendo putting epilepsy sensitivity warnings in GBA and Gamecube games. This eventually translated into a warning built into the BIOS of the Wii and DS. In the Wii U and 3DS, the warnings exist as a menu option instead of appearing every time the system boots up. This also became a priority in designing their emulators, and thus many older games had their flashing light effects toned way down on rerelease. Again, for the vast majority of people, there is NO danger at all. Plasma screen or no, flashing lights won’t damage anyone’s eyes (actually, plasma screens are only as bright as CRT, because both illuminate using phosphor dots).

To that end, I say I approve of all of this. Making the lives of handicapped people a little easier is what decent human beings who care about others do.

The only thing I would like, some day at least, is a “historical” option that allows people to restore flashing light effects to games that had it removed. This will be a concern that won’t be answered for a long time to come I think, if ever. It’s just one of those things. In this case, the change to the game’s visuals is hardly drastic, and the effects remain, only washed out, so it is not a great concern of mine. I think it may get blown out of proportion. Let’s let this one slide at bit, at least until Nintendo considers some sort of cartridge based collection of truly “ported” Mother games. At that point, we can make this request a little stronger.

The Apple Kid said on Jun. 6, 2013

@Northern Wind Just an analogy. After so long of paying extreme prices for carts that an $8 price is kind of like a gift.

standigz said on Jun. 7, 2013

This is probably something to do with preventing epileptic seizures. Nintendo did the same thing with Zelda II when it came to the VC.

johnr754 said on Jun. 7, 2013

I think the epilectic thing was probably caused by the infamous Porygon episode of Pokémon. This caused less flashing lights from every anime and game development company, such as Squaresoft or Nintendo.

JamesBond007 said on Jun. 8, 2013

“If you don’t like changes, play the original version” – sounds fine, but the easiest way is playing on emulator.

Electric Soldier Porygon – you can play this “Russian Roulette” here:

Carlos said on Jun. 12, 2013

Not bad Nintendo.

Not bad 🙂

Elise said on Jun. 19, 2013

This whole thing does remind me of a certain Pokemon episode. Thing is, Earthbound was released prior to that episode and from what I heard, after that incident networks completely overhauled regulations regarding flashing scenes (not just for Pokemon, reruns of certain old shows also reduce flashing). Gameboys (and youtube) have lower frame rates than TVs and are much less likely to induce seizures so that may be why Mother 1+2 didn’t change the graphics (and also why you can safely watch the Porygon episode online) Since this game will be played on a TV and not a handheld, I don’t think Nintendo’s taking any chances (and it may not be up to them either. No one wants a repeat of the Porygon episode).

Personally, I don’t mind the reduced flashing, but I kinda feel that everything is a shade darker now…

McKnight said on Jun. 21, 2013

This is kinda like having to choose between Stereo and Mono sound quality. Most people are gonna go with Stereo, but there are a few that might have to go with Mono for whatever reason (don’t know too much about that). I actually do think making this an option *would* be a better decision.

FlyingManCourage said on Jun. 22, 2013

ROFL at everyone acting like children. This is why everyone says that Mother fans are just a bunch of whiny children. Let’s examine what happened here:

FMC, a longtime browser of this site, logged on to EARTHBOUNDCENTRAL, a website all about a video game, and found a post about the upcoming animation changes in the game. FMC, as per his usual behavior, came in and posted his thoughts on the subject. People immediately freakout in typical Mother fanboy fashion. No one can hanlde A) my opinion that I don’t like animation changes like this in any video game and B) how I expressed my opinion. Very typical Mother fanboy stuff. The little children that call themselves the “Mother community” are constantly trying to tell others what to think, how to think it, and in many cases even why to think it. Just take a look at the threads around here. As someone pointed out, I’ve been around for awhile so I know exactly what to expect out of the children who frequent this place.

I appreciate those of you who used your critical thinking skills and actually applied your brain to the situation. Let’s take a quick second to think about what’s being a bigger baby….posting your opinion on the specific topic of a blog post….or calling someone asshole, prick, and smug because you don’t like what they are saying on the internet. Yea, exactly as I said…ENJOY YOUR IMMATURITY CHILDREN.

The one saving grace about this particular site is that Mato obviously doesn’t seem to suffer from this affliction of having to control everyone on the internet. If any of you have been around for more than 10 minutes, you’ll clearly see that Mato allows people to speak their minds. It’s a good thing he doesn’t demand the same type of uniform conformity out of his readers that they all demand out of each other. This site would be beyond boring if we all were forced to adhere our behavior to the preferences of a bunch of whiny children.

Power to you, Mato. And to everyone who came in massaging their butts because they didn’t like what I said or how I said….

GROW UP! rofl.

Mato said on Jun. 22, 2013

It looks like this conversation has gone way off course and is now just arguing about arguing and being poopy. So I’m shuttin’ ‘er down~


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