EarthBound 64 Fact Refresher:

With the new Mother 3 for Game Boy Advance coming out, the cancelled EarthBound 64 could use some more attention. A lot of facts and rumors never really left Japan's shores, so Starmen.Net will be refreshing people's memories and possibly giving new information about this ill-fated game.

Most of this information is summarized and para-translated from the excellent Japanese site, Chimera's Forest. There's a LOT of information to go through, so these refresher pages will be updated a chunk at a time.


Mother 3 Introduction:

Title: Mother 3 - Fall of the Pig King
Made By: Nintendo
Genre: RPG
Estimated Release Date: Sometime in 2000
Price: 6800 yen
Media: N64 Cartridge
Game Size (Mb): Unknown
Rumble Pak Compatible

Basic Mother 3 History:

Mother 3 for the Nintendo 64 was first publically announced around 1996. In 1997, screenshots and the game's subtitle - "Chimera's Forest" - were revealed. It seemed like the game was on the road to being completed, but after that, information on the game pretty much dried up.

The subtitle was later changed to "The Fall of the Pig King", and the game was now scheduled to be a regular N64 cartridge game instead of a N64 Disk Drive game.

In 1999, it could be found in playable demo form at Nintendo's annual Spaceworld event. That was the last time it was ever shown off; the game was cancelled in August of 2000.

In April of 2003, news about Mother 3 re-emerged, but it was now being developed for the Game Boy Advance. For more information about this GBA game, check out the Mother 3 section.

Mother 3 and the Nintendo 64 Disk Drive:

Mother 3 was originally intended to be for the 64DD accessory for the Nintendo 64 system. The benefits of the 64DD was that games could be bigger, and lots more data could be saved to them than on regular N64 cartridges. Save files could be hundreds or thousands of times bigger, meaning much more interactive worlds.

The system also included a built-in clock which games could use to keep track of time. This meant that games could sort of take place in real-time, much like the Animal Crossing games of today. An example of the clock's usefulness was this: a player could plant a seed in a field, and over time it would slowly grow. You could turn the game off for a long time or come back much later and the tree might be big enough to enter a new area or the like. Mother 3 was intended to use this to make towns and the world much more lively.

Mother 3 was reliant on the 64DD being released, but the 64DD was also reliant on Mother 3 - it was to be one of the first games released. Citing software development delays, the 64DD's expected late 1996 release kept getting pushed back. Since the future of the 64DD was uncertain, in 1999 it was announced that Mother 3 was going to be released on a regular N64 cartridge.

The 64DD was pushed so far back that it wasn't released until almost the same time the PS2 came out. All the main titles for the 64DD system had already been moved to cartridge form, so by the time it was released, it was already dead in the water.

Then, in August of 2000, half a year after the 64DD's release, Mother 3 was cancelled. Three months later in November, the 64DD was discontinued. And so both versions of the game wound up dead and destined never to be played by users.

The Game and the Game World:

Chapter System:
Mother 3 was broken into chapters, and in each one would have different main characters. But they weren't indepedent of each other; sometimes you might run across characters from other chapters or see some events from different people's perspectives.

There were supposedly 12 chapters, and there were apparently twice as many main characters as in the last game. The first chapter was to take place in Tatsumairi (sometimes spelled Tatsumari, official spelling currently unknown) Village, with a fellow named "Flint" as the main character.

In the May 2000 issue of "64 Dream", Itoi says:
"I really might need to cut back on Chapter 12."
"(About the main character) If you asked me which I should call the main character, I suppose there is one 'main' one."
Incidentally, this character is "Lucas".

Spanning 10 Years:
According to the same issue of 64 Dream, Mother 3's story was originally intended to span a 10-year period. The main characters would grow and mature, too, of course. This info came out early on when it was still a 64DD game, though, and it was never repeated afterwards, so there's a chance it could have changed.

The Setting:
Mother games take place in locations inspired by the image of America, but supposedly Mother 3 was pretty different. It had more of a medieval setting with its forest and castles, though it also had a some "Wild West"-like elements too. Itoi supposedly doesn't have any qualms with using different time periods as backdrops.

The Key Word is "Pig":
One of the game's subtitle is "Fall of the Pig King", and all kinds of pigs show up in the game. The "dragon (pic 2)" creature seems to play an even more important role, though...

An Unpleasant Story:
In many of Mother 3 interviews, Shigesatoi Itoi likes to call the story "unpleasant" and "mean".

"(About the ending) You asked if the ending is tearjerking, but I'd say the real tearjerking probably happens during the game itself. And the game might end with you being like, 'Huh?!' It's really an unpleasant game (laugh)." (From 64 Dream, Dec. 1997)

"(About the story) This time, I do terrible things. Very unpleasant. (snip) It's almost like, 'No, not characters like that!'" (From Famitsu, June 27, 1997)

Itoi: "I think the ending will go above tearjerking and turn your mind into a complete blank."
64 Dream: "(snip) So it's like, 'How horrible!'?"
Itoi: It's horrible (laugh). People might say I took the easy way out, but I'm a convinced criminal."
(From 64 Dream, May 2000)

There are many other interviews in which Itoi says the player's feelings will most definitely be betrayed (in a good sense, of course).

Tatsumairi Village:
This is the village we know the most about. The game starts here The first main character, Flint, appears to be one of many residents here. There is a creek, a jungle, and other things nearby. It's also somewhat likely that the Chimera Forest, the Unlost Cave, and Oouroko Village aren't very far away either. In the village itself there seems to be a hotel, a bar named "YADO", and some small shops.At the top of a hill is a mansion where the village's big shots live. Apparently, this town's name is supposed to be spelled "TAZMILY", but that's probably due to bad English skills more than anything.

Chimera Forest:
This was the original subtitle for Mother 3. It was written using Japanese katakana, but later changed to Japanese kanji to make it look more marketable. That eventually got the axe too, and the new subtitle was "Fall of the Pig King". Since the forest was in the original subtitle, Chimera Forest is probably a pretty big place in the game.

There are supposedly some villagers who pick mushrooms in the forest, and it definitely looks like this is the case from some of the screenshots. There's also a giant pipeline going through the forest, meaning people have gone deep into the forest before.

There are scenes in the Spaceworld trailer and the screenshots that show a large beast running through the forest. Could this be the Chimera? This chimera looks more like a dragon than a crazy animal hybrid, though.

Unlost Cave:
Much like the gold mine cave known as "Spectacular Cave" that Itoi once reported from, this cave really fits its name. Supposedly this is the first cave the player winds up going to, and just as its name implies, it's practically impossible to get lost in it. But the cave is supposedly dark and full of violent bats. All this information was really old, though, so it could have changed.

Tropical Jungle:
A jungle near Tatsumairi Village. It's full of baobab trees,just as colorful as its name implies, and feels much like an Indonesian or other southern country. Apparently Lucas, resident of Tatsumairi, visits this place often.

In the Sep. 3, 1999 edition of Weekly Famitsu, it says that the main characters live in a village by a creek, and that after an unknown object appears, strange phenomena begin to happen. Supposedly mysterious yells or sounds can be heard from the forest afterward. The village's semi-leader Flint sets off into the forest to solve this mystery. Anyways, it appears this creek plays an important part at the beginning of the game.

Oouroko Vilage (Big Scale Village):
Supposedly a Kraken has suddenly appeared at this village. There's such a big uproar that rumors about it have even made their way to other villages. A long time ago, Nintendo of America posted a rough sketch of this Kraken. However, unlike the Mother 2/EarthBound Kraken, this one has two heads. Here is a screenshot of it. And another.

Club Chichibu:
It's not exactly known where this club is, but it has live concerts and the band known as Desperado Crash Mambo Combo (D.C.M.C. for short) plays there. There's also supposedly a waitress at this club who will give you secret information if you give her a generous tip. Here's a rough sketch.

A picture of a crossroad named "Crossroad" was released a long time ago. There's nothing much to say about it, but supposedly if you go straight down one of the roads you'll reach a rocky mountain known as "Great Rock".

Honolele Summer Resort:
This location wasn't actually shown for 100% sure in any screenshots (though this one fits the bill), but in one of the screenshots, its name appears on a sign a pig is holding in a snowy country. It could be much like how in Threed in EarthBound, there was a sign advertising the resort town of Summers. And in Mother 1's "Snowman" there was talk about a desert.

Rough Sketches:
There were some rare sketches located on Nintendo of America's site for a while. They also found their way into a really old 64 Dreams (Oct. 1997), but they never got too much attention. There appears to be a "Pirate Village Store" and a "Pirate Village Souvenir Shop", so it looks like a pirate village was one of the places the game takes you to. There was also a "Blacksmith Shop". There are other sketches of a castle and such, but who knows what exactly made it into the game and what didn't.

Saturn Valley:
Benimaru "Ashura" Itoh mentioned this very quickly in an interview. Supposedly Mr. Saturns also appear in this third game, and just like last time, they live in a "Mr. Saturn Village" in a valley. What's more, there were supposedly other "touching characters" besides Mr. Saturn in the game.

Game Characters:

The first main character. He's the father of his twin sons, Lucas (another main character) and Claus. He has a subdued sort of outer appearance. He seems to have a young and beautiful wife (but this could have changed) and plays a sort of leader-type role in Tatsumairi Village. Apparently he's a much nicer guy than he looks.

One of the first main characters to be revealed. As he lives with Flint in Tatsumairi Village, he probably first shows up very early in the game. He supposedly has a personality somewhat like that of a "gentle kid who likes flowers and small islands". He also likes animals and likes to explore the forest, which might lead him to big trouble. Lucas appears like a bright kid with blonde hair. He also has a twin brother named Claus.

Twin brother of Lucas. It's unknown if he's a main character or not. He had somewhat sinister look in early pictures, but later pictures had him looking almost exactly like Lucas, except he has brown hair instead of blonde hair, as can be seen here

Apparently Lucas and Claus are based off of characters in the novel, "Le Grande Cashier". Shigesato Itoi was supposedly greatly impacted by this book and named the characters after them out of respect.

One of the first main characters to be revealed. He sleeps during the day and works at night. Apparently he drinks a cocktail first thing when he wakes up. He probably gets told that his sleepy eyes are sexy or something. He has a big nose and wears chiefly green clothing and walks around looking like a tattered bag. Apparently Duster has an old master named Wess. It's unknown what he's a master of, however.

Mysterious Traveling Salesman and Salsa
Another main character (and animal) revealed early on. The salesman takes the monkey - named Salsa - wherever he goes. Just from looks alone, one might think, "This is really a playable character?" It's unknown what exactly he goes around selling. Apparently Salsa is also good at performing backflips. The monkey's name is a sort of pun on the word "monkey".

Itoi said early on in EB64's development that Pokey would be returning for Mother 3. Given the sub-title of "Fall of the Pig King", it would seem to be referring to him, but since Itoi mentioned that Pokey wasn't intended to be the final boss of Mother 3, it's hard to say anything for sure. Pokey (or a Pokey look-alike) can also be seen in one of the early group screenshots (look in the very back right).

Dr. Andonuts
Itoi also mentioned in an interview that Dr. Andonuts would be returning as well, but probably not for a particularly big role. It seems he's created some kind of giant ice-cream shaped building in Mother 3. Other than that, not too much was said about him.

Mr. Saturn
Itoi also mentioned in the same interview that Mr. Saturn would be in Mother 3 too. Apparently they live in a valley-like place in Mother 3, just as they did in Mother 2. Supposedly Mr. Saturn was created from some scribbled drawings Itoi did before Mother 2, and Mother 3 would also have some charming scribbled-drawing-based characters too.

Short for Desperado Crash Mambo Combo. Probably the "Runaway Five" of Mother 3. It's hard to tell exactly from the various screenshots and movies, but it looks like the group is centered around a female vocalist, with a guitar, sax, bass, drums, and keyboard being handled by five guys. They supposedly have live concerts at the club in Chichibu and are currently working on some new songs. As a side note, in real life, there was a D.C.M.C. T-shirt that only a handful of people ever got. You're pretty lucky if you managed to get one!

Apparently a type of dragon. Supposedly a dragon was meant to play a main role in Mother 3, so Drago is probably the one to focus on. In an interview (64 Dream, Dec. 1997), Itoi mentioned that his favorite character was Drago and that he was a strong part of the story. One screenshot of Drago has the player fighting him in a battle scene, but later on Lucas can be seen riding on Drago's head, so he could be a complex character that was both enemy and friend. In another interview (64 Dream, April 1997) Itoi said, "I bet if I were playing the game and then I saw there was a dragon in it, I'd yell, 'How stupid!' (laugh)" A kind of mysterious comment when you think about it, but that's Itoi for you.

Mother 1 and 2 had events early in the game involving the main character's dog, and Mother 3 looks to be no different. Boney is the pet dog of Flint, Lucas, and Claus. He looks kind of like a dumb ol' dog, but we're told he's actually quite charming. Apparently the player also got to name him.

Supporting Characters
Just like Mother 1 and Mother 2, Mother 3 has a corrupt/incompetent town mayor or leader. His name is unknown, but he looks almost like a Mafia-type of guy and lives in the big house in Tatsumairi Village.

Next is Lisa, the shop clerk. She says strange things about how she isn't Lisa and how she isn't a shop clerk.

Then there's Yosaku, a really big guy who appears to work out a lot. Supposedly he likes to go into the woods too.

Clay People
These green clay-like people are supposedly being forced to do slave labor for the pig army. It's unknown if they literally are made of clay or are just people turned into monsters. Very little is known about these guys.



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