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October 24th, 2013 | MOTHER 1

A pretty common question I get is something like this one, which Josh B. sent in a while back:

You’re probably really confused by the title, but I just need to ask this. Has there ever been a translation of the famicom version of Mother 1 but that keeps the same menu, dungeon, and world layouts? As in, excluding the look option and the longer Magicant exit?

To the best of my knowledge, there aren’t any fan translations of the Famicom MOTHER game yet. It certainly wouldn’t be hard to do, but it would still be a good amount of work, and the space restriction demon might rear its head once in a while.

For those not in the know, the NES version of the game had a lot of changes and improvements made, including things like map changes, new options, an expanded ending, etc. MOTHER 1+2 retained these enhancements, so there’s always been a bit of fan interest to experience the original game as it was originally released.

I don’t intend to do a Famicom MOTHER translation, but I hope someone will try sometime. I know there were a few attempts in the past, but it sounds like they didn’t get very far. I’m sure it’ll happen one of these days though!


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5 Comments to MOTHER Famicom Translation Stuff

The Man With No Name said on Oct. 24, 2013

I can just imagine all the little kids playing MOTHER who had no idea the dragon existed in the Magicant caves

PersonB said on Oct. 24, 2013

This post brings up a question I have had for a while: Why, when working with game ROMs, do you have to be concerned with space restrictions?
I would assume that after you get that little ROM on a multi-giga/terabyte hard drive, you would be at liberty to expand and (if you really have cause to) shrink the file as you see fit. Though I guess adding to a ROM is not going to be the same as adding to a Word document. Or does it have to do with keeping the ROM a suitible size for distribution? Or some sort of Street Cred deal, like “I didn’t even have to add 32bytes to add 1000 lines of text”, and your ROM hacking friends now all worship you?

Mato said on Oct. 24, 2013

It’s different for different systems, but basically a game console can only access a limited address space, and you have to work within that space.

A random, made-up example might be a game console can only access 100 bytes of space, starting with address 0 and working up all the way to address 99.

Let’s say there was a game for this system, and you dumped the ROM for it. It’s now a file on your computer and it’s 100 bytes in size.

Now, you COULD simply make that file as big as you want by adding blank stuff to the end. But since the actual game system can only access addresses 0 through 99, any data added is beyond its reach and can’t be accessed.

Hopefully that makes some sense. In some cases it IS possible to expand ROMs without too much trouble, but for NES games it’s especially difficult and doesn’t happen very often.

As another example, GBA address limits mean that the maximum GBA ROM size is 32 megabytes. MOTHER 3 was that size already, so we couldn’t expand it for the translation. Instead, we had to use other solutions for our space problems, like compression and rearranging stuff.

Chivi-chivik said on Oct. 24, 2013

So there were translation attempts and they failed? I think we won’t see any translation for a while… for a VERY LONG while…
Not everybody is able to do such kind of work.

KingSombrero said on Nov. 14, 2013

I know there’s been uncensoring patches by someone at Starmen.Net that restore the original graphics, but I don’t think the changes run deeper than that. I THINK there was someone interested in inserting the prototype or Mother 1+2 translation text into the Japanese Famicom game, but I’m not sure how that turned out.


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