News Article

ESRB Update: EarthBound Finally Coming To Virtual Console!

Posted by Marcel van Duyn

If you're familiar at all with the Mother series (Only the second game was released outside Japan, as EarthBound) you should know it's got an enormous cult following. In fact, EarthBound was the number one wanted VC game in the Nintendo Power poll just a few days ago! Fans have pleaded for Nintendo to release the other games in the series, Mother and Mother 3 in the West, or at least give the series some more attention, but to this day, their wishes still haven't been satisfied. That is all changing now - EarthBound has been rated by the ESRB, indicating that it will be released on the VC in the future.

All the praise EarthBound gets is really not just because Nintendo seems to be ignoring it outside Japan. It's a really solid and unique RPG - Instead of in the past or future it actually takes place during the present day, and you fight with weapons like yo-yos and baseball bats. The game is filled with cultural references to bands, videogames and more, has an excellent story, an excellent soundtrack, great, colourful graphics and tons more good stuff. Sadly, the game was never released in Europe, but we can always hope it shows up as an import game, right?

The ESRB (As well as the PEGI, earlier today) also rated the Neo Geo game Metal Slug. The ESRB has also rated Samurai Shodown II and the WiiWare games Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles: My Life as a King, Dr. Mario & Germ Buster (The ESRB lists it as Dr. Mario Wii - Its possible US name?) and Gyrostarr.

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User Comments (92)

slangman

#2

slangman said:

Awesome i wounder when Earthbound will get PEGI rated for this years Hanibai Festival?

GameGod3008

#4

GameGod3008 said:

Horray. Here's to hoping this is released in the Hanabi Festival, along with Super Mario RPG although i highly doubt that it will happen for Mario RPG

MrPoo6321

#5

MrPoo6321 said:

sweet!! I never got to play earthbound as a kid and i've always really wanted to. it came in a huuuuge box that looked like it had a super scope inside. i know the game doesn't use the super scope at all, but i've always been intrigued by that big 'ole box. and since then i've become very familiar with Ness in Smash Bros. and it's gonna be great to finally see where he came from. Now if we could only get Fire Emblem.....

Stuffgamer1

#6

Stuffgamer1 said:

@MrPoo6321: That big box had a player's guide for the game in it. I still have that box in my basement...
EARTHBOUND!!!!!!!!! Here's hoping it actually gets released soon instead of having ESRB weirdness like Mario RPG and Kirby's Dream Land 3. It's SO worth 800 points! If/when it releases on VC, you should all download it without hesitation.

Bensei

#7

Bensei said:

I hope we'll get it this year and not at Hanabi festival 3, if we get it :( (Although I don't think they can stop a Brawler on the VC)

Rapadash6

#9

Rapadash6 said:

Wow! Maybe Nintendo was actually paying attention to the NP poll. Hopefully Super Mario RPG and Chrono Trigger won't be too far behind. Of course I'll try to keep my excitement to a minimum. Just because it's rated doesn't necessarily mean it'll be released soon, sadly.

Raichu06

#10

Raichu06 said:

Yes this better not turn into a long waiting game as with Super Mario RPG and such. I simply cannot wait! Still have the Player's guide and the game but will gladly buy it again =]

DJ_Triforce

#11

DJ_Triforce said:

Haha, Charco! It's true... this good looks, sounds, feels, and plays amazingly... It's like Nintendo has finally listened. Earthbound and a possible hard drive... what a great week. :) Either that, or VC-Reviews is trying to lie to us. :P

pdrydia

#13

pdrydia said:

I really, really hope Earthbound gets released on everyone's VC. It's a great game, we all should get a chance to play it.

Also:
OMIGOSH YAY! = D

RoninDennis

#14

RoninDennis said:

Well, nothing but good news recently! But dammit, where's my Mega Man!!!! (sorry, couldn't resist, I'm not even from the US!) ;-)

DEMON212

#16

DEMON212 said:

Well this years Hanabi is a SHMUP fest. So maybe next year of even in December time, we'll get an RPG fest with this, SMRPG and Chrono?

toffeeman30

#17

toffeeman30 said:

I TAKE IT BY THE COMMENTS THAT THIS EARTHBOUND IS A BIT SPECIAL. NEVER PLAYED IT SO WILL GET IT IF IT COMES OUT IN THE EU. JUST GONNA GET IT JUST FOR THE FACT THAT PEOPLE ARE RAVING ABOUT IT! MIND U THOUGH, STILL WAITING FOR AXELAY!

Mike1

#18

Mike1 said:

Not to burst anyone's bubble of excitement, but Kirby Dream Land 3 was rated quite a long time ago and it still hasn't shown up on the VC yet. Just because it's rated doesn't mean it will come out soon. Heck, Super Turrican was rated last summer and it didn't come out until last month. I just hope by Dr. Mario getting rated that it will come out on May 12 when WiiWare launches in the US.

Lugia2

#19

Lugia2 said:

toffeeman30: Think of this like an Okami: Great game that sold horribly. I managed to borrow it for a few months- and trust me: it's a great game!

And hey: if enough buy it, Nintendo might bring its superior sequel to the USA and the EU!

J_K

#21

J_K said:

I haven't touched that game in probably 10 years...around when I sold it once I was finished (at a decent profit.) Local shop to where I was living had it complete in box for $30 in the mid 90s...sold it a few years later for like $60 or so. There are days I wish I still had it, but probably mostly from all the online fanbase whining over being ignored so long. I imagine I could end up picking this up on the Wii as I'm not stupid enough to pay that $100 or whatever idiots have driven it up to these days online as that's just as sick as it is sad.

Adamant

#24

Adamant said:

Fun. I recently picked up the original Mother for the Famicom, looks like I'll be getting this after finishing that.

N_A_T_O

#26

N_A_T_O said:

Now this is coming, can everyone begin agitating for a wii version of Shenmue 3?

Pretty please?

calc_nerd

#28

calc_nerd said:

Yeah, don't get too excited, smk and mario rpg are have been been esrb rated for over a year, both which have not been released yet!

lockelocke

#29

lockelocke said:

While its possible that Earthbound could be rated by the ESRB and still never make it to the VC, I highly doubt its a coincidence that EB was rated just shortly after it appeared in NP as the number one wanted VC title. I'd say we'll be seeing Earthbound, and we'll be seeing it soon. Hells to the yes, I'm bout to beat some ass with my cracked bat, y'know?

Fireballmario

#31

Fireballmario said:

Our pleading to Nintendo has finally came through, it is time to celebrate! So gonna buy this game when it comes out! Right on!

Rexy

#32

Rexy said:

I never knew Earthbound was neglected in Europe >.>
But still, it better show up on our side of the channel and all just as well as it does in America. Heck, there were all sorts of great games sent in for the SNES that we European folk never got, and I'd say the same thing to Chrono Trigger and Kirby's Dreamland 3 as well.

Starwolf_UK

#33

Starwolf_UK said:

@ Mike. Don't forget Shining Force 2 in your list of rated ages ago by the ESRB but never came out...oh and Zombies Ate my Neighbours :(

Anyway, I hope the opperations manual has the players guide that game with the game re-created in some form. The guide really does enhance the atmosphere of the game so it would be a shame to be without it (but what can I say Phantasy Star 2 came without the hint book*). Though it can be found online (sames goes the Phantasy Star 2 hint book)

*-Containing Maps for the dungeons which for Phantasy Star 2s dungeons were practically a must.

Tides_of_Chaos

#34

Tides_of_Chaos said:

YES! Now hopefully it'll be released at least in the next few months. I don't know if I can stand waiting another year for it.

Shortay

#35

Shortay said:

What are you talking about Jogurt? You never told us on the forum a few days previous that Nintendo would release EarthBound eventually :P

Kidpit

#36

Kidpit said:

Since the game was originally sold with a player's guide, does that mean there's going to be an electronic version of the guide for the VC release. :D

Storm101

#37

Storm101 said:

Yes!!! I can't wait to finally try this game, and hopefully Mother 1.

And NintendoBrad, there is no evidence to suggest the fact that SMRPG was removed becasue of issues with Square. All of the games originally rated in 2006 were taken off, and these include games like Super Metroid. Most recently released games aren't even rated yet.

That_Guy_from_Faxana

#40

That_Guy_from_Faxana said:

Eatrhboundhmnnjj :o Samurai Shodwwwnn..2! And Metal Slug creeping clooser... Exciting times ahead, hope they make it, please come to Europe sweet games!

Objection

#41

Objection said:

Nice. this is exactly what VC needs: a must have game. Havent had one of these ina long time. GO Ninty. Just deliver it soon and keep the momentum going.

Genroh

#42

Genroh said:

The twin blessings of River City Ransom and now Earthbound!
*huggles Wii

TheLuigiDude

#43

TheLuigiDude said:

I've never played this title and regret not SO much! I can't wait to see what's all the fuss my buds make over this one so I can support the Mother 3 (and 1) campaign

Clayfrd

#46

Clayfrd said:

Awright! I've always wanted to play EarthBound. I agree with others, though. Please, Nintendo, bring on Super Mario RPG!

The_shoemaker

#47

The_shoemaker said:

@NintendoBrand

Or maybe for Mothers day Nintendo will release the first one Mother. It was only released in Japan, but US could get an import, and The EU is having it's Habi festival thingy, so they could get it too. As much as i want earthbound, I want to play the first one first.

GameGod3008

#48

GameGod3008 said:

I've heard that a localization was completed for the first game and was to be called "Earth Bound". Maybe we'll end up getting this at some point

Aldo

#49

Aldo said:

Yeaha!!! Dreams comes true!
What are with the Satellite SNES Games like F-Zero2, Zelda BS and so! Hoply they come on VC out

XCWarrior

#50

XCWarrior said:

Thank goodness. I actually still haven't bought a VC title, mainly because I'm so back loaded on ps2 and gcn games that I never saw a point if they are just going to sit. But if this comes out, I will get it immediately.

Here's to hoping it comes out on Mother's day. That would be perfect.

On a side note, good to see Gryostarr is already rated. That is my first WiiWare game I'm getting, so this post was double good news for me!

Kelvin

#51

Kelvin said:

I suspect it was less to do with the magazine poll, and more with the characters' appearances in Smash Bros. After all, didn't the Fire Emblem series finally start to appear in the West after their lead characters' appearances in the previous Smash?

Storm101

#52

Storm101 said:

Yeah, but even after two Smash Bros. games Mother 3 was released only in Japan.

Fulgor_Astral

#54

Fulgor_Astral said:

mario rpg plz :(
but im very pleased with earthbound coming to vc

do u guys think its because of the nintendo power poll?

Ness012345

#55

Ness012345 said:

Not to be a killjoy, and I'm hoping to god that it does come out, but don't forget Mario RPG was rated by the ESRB as well, but than went pop.

Granted, I don't think it's going to be the same thing with Earthbound, seeing as the game had a trial version of it in Brawl, but still, just because it's ESRB rated doesn't mean it's 100% coming.

SuperMichael64

#56

SuperMichael64 said:

IVE NEVER PLAYED THIS BUT HAVE HEARD SO MUCH OVER THE YEARS ABOUT HOW BIG OF A CULT CLASSIC IT IS AND I FINALLY GET TO PLAY A PORTION OF THE ONLY NINTENDO FRANCHISE IVE NEVER PLAYED! :D

smashter

#57

smashter said:

Did anyone ever think Earthbound would never come to VC?? i hope not...and im certainly not surprised by this news.

just because its been official doesnt necessarily mean we're guaranteed to see this any time soon. I'm still disappointed in the delay.

Ragnor

#59

Ragnor said:

I really do hope it comes out during the Hanabi Festival. Then people will shut the hell up about "I WANT EARTHBOUND BAAAAAW"

Besides, Mother's Day, ie perfect time to release it, but this year, Nintendo isn't smart with VC release dates like they were last year. ie no Smash Brothers with Brawl, no SMK with Kart Wii, so I don't expect to see it.

NESgamer

#60

NESgamer said:

Oh hell yes!, i will get this as soon as we are able to download it. Please, pleeeassee don't take a year to do it :(.

Drizzt

#61

Drizzt said:

Wow, that's great new. I just hope we see Majora's Mask someday soon. People will finally be able to play the game where Ness comes from and not have to ask so many questions :P .

Chasmang

#62

Chasmang said:

Get ready for this to be one of the VC's best sellers. It's gonna' be huge...should be considering it IS the best game of all time. ;)

Fulgor_Astral

#63

Fulgor_Astral said:

emmm i think calling it the best game of all time is... pointless

that title obviously goes to FF7 haha

tough i really like Earthbound (never finished it tough), its a (very) regular RPG, one of the most loved ones, true, but a regular experience overall. What makes Earthboundgood Its the union of the Mother Saga (NES, SNES,GBA). I really hate that Pokey (or Porky)

deadly_by_design

#64

deadly_by_design said:

Earthbound is not a regular RPG. It's quirky, original, and just plain off the wall sometimes. I loved it back then, though the jury's still out on whether I'd actually buy it for the Wii to replay. Definitely would prefer to replay this than FF7 though....

poggydude

#65

poggydude said:

Played a little on an emulator

cool but I refuse to sit at my computer on an uncomfortable seat for it
my bed is much softer

michinmuri

#66

michinmuri said:

Only played it a bit on emulator. Didn't get hooked but knew it had potential. Besides, all of these raving mad fans in here can't be wrong. I WILL cough up the money for this game, then cour the web for a walkthough.

miletich3

#67

miletich3 said:

This is the toughest, most breathtaking... yet most extraordinary RPG I've ever seen. Hope we get the US release date.

NESgamer

#68

NESgamer said:

Yeah this RPG is kinda tough, mostly the first run and if you don't take your time to level your buddies (because you get them at puny levels). Some things in there are hilarious, sarcastic and really well done.

I would buy Earthbound, without hesitate it a bit.

DjinnFighter

#70

DjinnFighter said:

Mother 2 on Mother's day... that's sound logic !

I'm waiting for Father 2....
sorry, it wasn't funny finally

poggydude

#71

poggydude said:

doesn't japan get all the good games ahead of us?

why do you all think we'll get it before them or even close to them

(I don't know how ESRB spoilers work so I'm ready to be wrong)

Objection

#72

Objection said:

@ Ness012345 or anyone else who can answer:
Was there really a demo of Earthbound on SSBB? It said I unlocled all the masterpieces but i dont have Earthbound. I'd love to demo it.
(Looks at Everybody's Nintendo Channel expectedly)

Hexxen7

#74

Hexxen7 said:

Yes, I will also get this as soon as its released, loved this game back in the day..emulators suck and like to screw up on you..

"Ness012345 Granted, I don't think it's going to be the same thing with Earthbound, seeing as the game had a trial version of it in Brawl, but still, just because it's ESRB rated doesn't mean it's 100% coming."

Your 100% correct however it could never be released unless it was first ESRB rated. Its 1 step in the right direction. Think Positive

NESgamer

#75

NESgamer said:

@poggydude

I think we may get it before because there was a port of this game (and the first NES mother) for the GBA on Japan not so long ago, we never got that port either so probably they will give us the game on VC before.

whalleywhat

#77

whalleywhat said:

Just think about it: You can hit a New Age Retro Hippie with a baseball bat and not get arrested. Plus, no Patchouli stench. Basically, Earthbound is GTA.

IPX_Ares

#79

IPX_Ares said:

FINALLY!!!!! I have my Wii Points waiting for this. I loved the SNES version, then that died, and I have used an emulator (bad me) at least two times just to play it, I cannot wait to "own" it again!

I have been checking the VC updates solely for this game, and now my search is over, well when it is released, now Mondays cannot come fast enough.

rbtransformed

#81

rbtransformed said:

I'm so excited about this game now! I've been watching some play-through videos on youtube and been frequenting Starmen.net more often. I just hope it's released soon and not at the very end of the summer like some big games were last year. (Metroid, Super Metroid, and Metroid Prime 3 to be exact)

I never had the opportunity to play this game the first time around, so I'll definitely download it the day it comes out.

Gameoverkid95

#82

Gameoverkid95 said:

i really want to play this game. i really do i never have got a chance to but i will say it agen i want to.

MrLopez

#84

MrLopez said:

Europe deserves this game more than america, we never even had the chance to play it!!!!!

giygas80

#91

giygas80 said:

i hope it come to the VC, i can only play it on my computer (and it is not working for some werid reason). so i really hope this happens.

The_Coz

#92

The_Coz said:

Well, it's 2012 now, and still no news. I don't think it's gonna happen. Nintendo obviously has better things to do with their time, then to release a fabulous game that will make great sales. Oh well, off to Ebay! :D

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