A Forward to This Emergency Symposium

Posted By at 9:07 PM on Tuesday June 14, 2011


This 13-part series of interviews covers a symposium with the developers on the topic of the cancellation of Mother 3 (Earthbound 64) for Nintendo’s failed Japan-only N64 add-on, the 64DD.

~To Those Who Patiently Waited~

Though, to tell you the truth, the current reality hasn’t yet set in for me, allow me to express my present feelings on the matter.

Yesterday evening, while preparing to publish this page, I did a quick run through of the completed portions of Mother 3 in order to get some in-game screenshots to use as reference material. A guy who worked for the story department of the Mother Team, Dai Miura, and I picked up controllers and played for almost 3 hours, battling and talking to the characters. I was glued to the screen the whole time. So was the Hobonichi staff. There were sounds of laughter, there were voices calling out, there were even people who looked like they were about to cry. It was as if we were playing a game that had been released.

However, it was an impossible memory of the future. Because this was a project that had been undertaken in secret, we hadn’t yet heard the laughter of actual players echoing there, but seeing people innocently enjoying the game, yelling “Awesome!” for the first time, I felt sad.

Even after the cancellation of the development of Mother 3 had been decided, I was asked “When is Mother 3 coming out?” countless times. I think that, even as meaningless answers that answered nothing got caught in my throat, I couldn’t believe that the game wouldn’t ever be coming out.

However, although the development of the game Mother 3 has, at present, lasted 6 years, it has been cancelled without accomplishing its motives. I think that the completed sections make for an interesting game, and there’s some lingering attachment to the unexpectedly twisting story, but it has now become a phantom game, its content known only to the present staff.

Imparting a simple letter about the cancellation of Mother 3’s development invites fears that I will be misunderstood, and I think drawing comparisons between the wasted time and the many affected staff members might leave me at a loss for words, so I decided that by speaking in full about these matters using the unrestricted media outlet of the Hobo Nikkan Itoi Shinbun, I’d be capable of explaining the circumstances to those who patiently waited. It should have been difficult, but we were able to examine the situation from each person’s standpoint and discuss our thoughts as calmly as possible.

Running a lengthy discussion like this in print has caused it to turn into something long and dense, but if we can all lend an ear to the emotions that are present here today, I’ll be happy.

It’s sad, but please accept this as the truth.

~Shigesato Itoi, August 22nd, 2000



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4 Responses

  1. Guy says:

    You might want to revise the title, you misread it lol. It’s not 待っていてくさった皆さまへ、it’s 待っていて  くださった  皆さまへ.

    Very good job though, sounds very professional.

  2. GlitterBerri says:

    Hahaha! Good call!


  3. Corrales says:

    As a lover of Japanese gaming, mostly Japanese-illiterate, I would like to congratulate you for your work on this site. It gives me a lot of insight on my favourite games, the process of their making, and the people who made them :) Thank you!

  4. GlitterBerri says:

    It’s my pleasure. =) I’m just as interested in these things as you!

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