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RetroNight: Earthbound (Mother 2)

Few things capture the level of rarity and intrigue as the popular JRPG title Earthbound or Mother 2 as it was known in Eastern releases. This game was a Super Nintendo title, and was fondly remembered by most for its quirky storytelling and unique environments.

Swapping out the fantasy swords and dragons for aliens and baseball bats, Earthbound is truly a beauty and an example of what games are capable of becoming. The game has resonated with fans on an incredibly deep level, showing some of the hardships of coming of age through the bizarre lens of a psychic boy trying to defeat an alien army.The narrative is and metaphorical on many deep levels.

EarthboundThe worlds are vibrant and colorful, as well as just being straight up fun to enjoy. Rather than going through dungeons and castles, you’re going through modern cities and attending concerts. In place of your typical tower, you might find a cave and fight a giant ant. The standard RPG turn-based experience commonly associated with Square Enix is shown to be compatible even with this non-traditional setting, making for an experience you’ll struggle to find anywhere else.

Earthbound excels in a place where most JRPGs simply can’t measure up. It’s humor is incredible. From the quirky nature of the villains, do its deeply rooted social commentary on issues like police brutality and the cult mentality, Earthbound had a style of humor that was far ahead of its time. It wasn’t afraid to take a daring leap into culture and stray away from fantasy tropes. Uniqueness itself isn’t enough to make a good game, but Earthbound capitalized on it like few games at the time really did.

Being one of the most popular RPGs of all time, Earthbound is an experience that most can agree, is insurmountable.

Written by Mustapha R. Price

Mustapha is a young yet spirited university student majoring in Game Art and Development. While he’s but a senior in college, he has an extensive history with the art of gaming journalism. Managing his own game review blog for several years, as well as attending events such as Boston FIG and PAX East has given him extensive experience in covering game news. His knowledge of game design also serves as a tool to develop finite understanding of what makes games work.

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