News Article

Shigesato Itoi Says Mother 4 Would Be "Impossible"

Posted by Orla Madden

Might as well be blunt about it

While EarthBound fans may be jubilant about the game making it to the Wii U Virtual Console, its creator, Shigesato Itoi, has taken to Twitter to announce there will be no future installments in the series.

When asked by a fan on the social networking site if he would consider making Mother 4, his response was simple - "impossible".

To be fair, we can't really complain. Two weeks ago, EarthBound - known as Mother 2 in Japan - wasn't even down for a digital release in the West, but Nintendo announced during its Nintendo Direct broadcast that it would be making its way to the Wii U Virtual Console after years of fans crying out for it.

The game - which is the successor to Japanese exclusive, Mother - will be available in Europe for the first time when it emerges on the Virtual Console.

What are your thoughts on this? Were you hoping Itoi would add further titles to the series? Let us know in the comment section below.


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User Comments (70)



Megumi said:

Eh, I kinda wanna see Mother 3 first...and I guess the first one...hopefully they can make it over here via remakes. Ah well, at least we're getting Mother 2. x3



TreesenHauser said:

Considering I still haven't played Mother or Mother 3 (only Earthbound), I'm in no position to complain. I gotta play those other games first before focusing on a new installment. Here's to hoping those get released here and in Europe as well



ricklongo said:

I feel like this article is missing at least some speculation by the author as to why this might be. This is some really sad news, I think. I would LOVE to see a new Mother game for 3DS, for example, and think it could do well.



HeatBombastic said:

I'm not complaining. Finding yet another way to connect a new chapter of the games would be almost impossible. The first one had the aliens, and the main character's looks be similar to the 2nd, and the 3rd had Porky.



TomJ said:

I can understand why, having read Mother 3's plot on Wikipedia.
Maybe we'll get both imported versions Mother and Mother 3 on the eshop like they've done in the past by importing some titles on the Wii Shop Channel.



HeatBombastic said:

@ricklongo The Mother games are over. Itoi might just feel that a sequel would be pushing it or ruin it. If you've played the series, you probably know that the connections between each game is somewhat vague, and must be noticed by the player. I think making a sequel truly would be impossible to at least making a presentable sequel.



HeatBombastic said:

I don't know why people are complaining so much as to why he isn't. All of the sequels were not direct sequels in the first place, and they always had to find some way to connect them. For those sad about no sequel due to the intriguing story and characters, there are many games (RPG's and more) out there that have a story just as good as Earthbound (eg. Shin Megami Tensei and sub-series), not the same vibe, but just as good stories. As for the combat, that wasn't the best out there anyways. Mother 3 was fantastic, and I for one would like to see Itoi try his hand at something new.



seronja said:

what about a reboot? this time a new 3D trilogy or something? or perhaps remake all 3 mother games for 3DS...



AhabSpampurse said:

Earthbound is in my top five of all time. Three is good, but not as good as two. I think three instalments are just fine.



Scarhino89 said:

When Earthbound will be released in Europe, I'll download it and I can play it for the first time!!



Kirk said:

I think that's very sad.

I really do think a new Mother/Earthbound game could be great.



duffmmann said:

context people, context. He was asked if he'd consider making Mother 4, he said impossible, maybe its impossible to consider because someone else is working on it for him (he gave the rights to another studio), or he's already working on it, so to consider making it wouldn't make sense as its already in development.

Or thats all just really wishful thinking...



tanookisuit said:

Not a big deal or any real deal at all, he moved on to better things. The Japanese don't go ape over it like people here do as they weren't died 2 of the 3 titles let alone the VC release for so long too. There's plenty NOA could pump out of this if they saw some crazy sales on the WiiU VC for Mother 2 (EB) because Mother 1 was fully translated cleanly by NOA and scrapped so that's a delayed easy money maker and then Mother 3 also exists for GBA easily thrown on the 3DS VC too and already has an existing translation and that Mushroom guy said he'd give it to them free and do any clean up labor needed to be kosher for their standards if they'd even consider it.

Earthbound I own and it's blown out of proportion, it just ends up being unique and Nintendo made so it has this crazy fanboy appeal to it.



Gregor said:

Wait... Wazzat Itoi? Can't make mother 4? Ok ok... I guess you can't... SO MAKE MOTHER 2 1/2 THEN! After all... After Giygas was destroyed... Who is to say the majority of the Starmen don't stage an attack on earth?



gsnap said:

Well... yeah. We already know that Itoi doesn't feel like making another one. It's still technically possible (there's no such thing as a dead franchise), but if one were to ever be made, he wouldn't have anything to do with it.

So it's definitely less likely than other games, but still possible.



47drift said:

No problem to me, but I hope they choose to localize Mother 3 with that fan translation going around.



Hejiru said:

This isn't exactly news. He's already said in the past that Mother 4 isn't going to happen.



NintyMan said:

Didn't he rule out the idea before?

Whatever, this second game will satisfy, unless Nintendo also brings Mother 3 and the original westward in the future.



TheRavingTimes said:

It's fair to understand why Mother 4 wouldn't be developed. Though many fans such as I would agree that there should be a 4th instalment, I do believe that Mother 3 tied up all loose ends and delivered the finale of the entire trilogy. Though perhaps a remake or side-story isn't out of the question.



Madotsuki said:

It's understandable if he doesn't want another Mother game... but what about making another game in general?

Of course, there is an answer to that too. Itoi isn't a game designer, at least not specifically. He writes essays and blogs and is a general personality. He may not have time or interest in making video games again. Oh well...



TwilightV said:

Why not make Mother 3 the way it was originally intended to be? Surely his team is experienced enough by now.



Bulbousaur said:

Well, we have that fan-made Mother 4 coming out this summer, so that should bide us over, for now.



Thexare said:

I feel it's better not to force the issue. Look what happened with Mega Man X.



Captain_Balko said:

I think that at the very least, a 3D or HD remake is in order. I mean, characters from the Mother series ARE in Smash Bros., which means a lot of people know about them. Most other IPs included in Smash Bros. continue to have games (I suppose the only notable exception is Ice Climbers, who were obscure enough in the first place, but now that they are established Smash Bros. lore, they can't simply be removed). I mean, gosh, even Pit got his own game a while after his appearance in Brawl. Game and Watch is getting to be part of the Wario Ware series in Game and Wario. Although, from what I've heard and seen, the Mother games are simply fantastic, I doubt that Ness and Lucas can justifiably be used in future installments of Smash Bros. (say, eight years from now) without a single remake or new game to their name since the 90's, except for the fact that they were used in past Smash Bros. games.



ouroborous said:

what makes it impossible? if people would buy it, you should freakin' make it! how dumb are you for cryin out loud. come on, no matter how wrapped up the story even supposedly might be, there is always room to write some more.



Emaan said:

I've accepted that we won't see a Mother 4 for a while now. It'd be great to see the original and the third game make it to the eShop worldwide though.

There's always room for a potential remake too.



LetsGoRetro said:

I had a deep love for all 16 bit RPG's such as FF2&3, Secret of Mana/Evermore, as well as adventure games likeZelda and the Soul Blazer series as a kid. This game was always pretty cool, but didnt stack up to the others in my opinion. I had no idea this game would come to be as highly regarded as it is. It is by no means bad, but why does everyone act like it's such a good story? I like it's quirkiness, but it is almost too random for it's own good. Giant pencils sticking out of the ground instead of boulders, characters named Apple Kid and Orange kid who invent weird machines. Im only to the town where the guy has the police force in his pocket (current playthrough, farthest ive ever got) but so far, this game is just a sequence of random, quirky events. Its no FF3, thats for sure. What is so amazing about this game?



Dpullam said:

Oh well. At least we will get to enjoy the original games. That's all I could ask for.



RudysaurusRex said:

I just read on Wikipedia; When asked about his thoughts on a Mother 4, Shigesato Itoi responded by stating that he had no plans to make such a game, and that "this time, I'd like to be the player." He also commented that if anyone said that they would like to make Mother 4, he would tell them to "go for it".



Steveovig said:

For pete's sake, just do another game. People want the series to continue and it is a business after all. It's like Nintendo is afraid of making money this cycle.



C-Olimar said:

If Earthbound sells VERY well on VC, I'm sure we'll get Mother and Mother 3. Then we can start begging for Mother 4.



Oscarsome said:

@HeatBombastic As if the creator can't just come up with some extra plot hole or extra story to engage in. Just seems like he does not want to make more.



Steveovig said:

@C-Olimar I don't know, I'm not holding my breath. It took them this long to get Mother 2 over here despite constant demand for it. It'd be really cool if they came over too. Wasn't Mother 1 already translated and ready for release back in the day?



C-Olimar said:

@Steveovig But demand doesn't have the same effect as sales. If they make a big profit off Earthbound, they'd be fools not to release the others! But it is Nintendo...
If it was translated, then awesome! Though I personally would be less likely to get it, since I'm in Europe - more languages to translate!



Einherjar said:

Mother 4 might just be a tad too much. A huge chunk of the appeal of this series is its whacky obscurity. Make it into a larger franchise and it might loose its uniquenes. And the last thing i want is for mother to become "normal" or even "mainstream"



Steveovig said:

You'd think if they really hyped up the release of the trilogy then the sales might not be too bad for them. If they made a really big deal out of them but they don't seem to be doing that for anything these days.



Stark_Nebula said:

Itoi has said before that he'd also love love to see a Mother 4, but not be the one to make, simply to be the player. I think this statement goes with that - he doesn't wan't to be the creator of Mother 4. Though I think leaving the franchise would be a good thing. He could, should he want to, make another series, and should he wish, make it a spiritual successor to the Mother series. Remember, Mother was an experiment in story telling for Itoi and was hardly supposed to be what it is today. I think moving on and making something fresh and new would be better. After all, that's what made Mother so great.



CanisWolfred said:

Shrugs Fine by me. Mother 3 was practically perfect for the most part, anyways. No need to try to improve on perfection.



CanisWolfred said:

@Einherjar While you're not incorrect, I do find such thinking absolutely abhorrent. There's a difference between dilluting a series, and making something that's widely popular...



shinpichu said:

No surprise here. Look, people, you need to accept that the series is just over. I know that's kinda weird, seeing as how most VG series don't really end, but it's time to let it go.

Or just go play the Mother 4 fangame. Your pick.



ecco6t9 said:

Earthbound 3 was an ordeal for development, and arrived so late after shifting platforms twice that there was no feasible physical market for it outside of Japan.

Granted a download version could work for Earthbound 3 or Earthbound 4 but I can see him no wanting to go through the stress of it again.



Melkaticox said:

That's quite sad...I LOVE the Mother series (haven't played Mother 2 though, can't believe Gyigas reappears at the end of the game :/)



Yosher said:

I'm happy to see Earthbound getting a release out of Japan again (and in Europe for the first time too), but I personally would still like to see more of the Mother series as well. Oh well. If not, we'll always have Ness and Lucas in the Smash series.



T1m1 said:

I can't complain really cause i never played any of the Mother games, I recently bought Earthbound (Mother 2) but i have nothing to play on it. Hopefully my Retro Duo console will show up some this week.



Adam said:

Whether it would sell or not, Itoi has a job, and it isn't making games. Just because it might be profitable doesn't mean he has to want to spend a ton of time and energy doing it.

The "Impossible" response was made on Twitter when someone asked how they could "make" him do a Mother 4. It was part of a tongue in cheek advice column he was doing temporarily. His answer should be taken in context. It wouldn't be impossible to make the game; it would be impossible to make him make the game.

That is how I saw it translated, anyway, for whatever little that is worth.



ToxorAxiom said:

But what about a Mother Trilogy for the 3DS system...

...IN THREEEE DEEEE?! Haha, sorry-- couldn't help that. =D



Drawdler said:

Oh well. They can always reboot it with a sepearate story if they must for a new game.



bluecat said:

Can't complain I suppose, but it'd sure be nice if the other two Mother games were released in English some day...



retro_player_22 said:

He probably says impossible cause he don't know what else to do with the series, something like making the series evolve into a huge 3D RPG adventure or make it into a glorified epic HD RPG masterpiece but instead he choose to killed the series. I feel the Mother series ended too soon, he could of at least remake one of them in HD for this gen.



Havkri said:

i think i can get why its "impossible". Shigesato Itoi have stated that the games are inspired by his own life events, and if he feels that he has given his games it all i can understand that, if thats the case though. i myself have never played the earthbound games, i was born at the wrong time and place, which is a shame. but maybe i will try out the series now that its coming to virtual console.



ogo79 said:

itoi has to keep reminding people he has no plans to make mother 4, this is nothing new.



mikeyman64 said:

Mother 1 2 and 3 were, honestly, adequate for me. I think the series won the "quality over quantity" battle.



jayblue said:

earthbound will be great to play not much spoken about mother 1,i take it the series has seprate stories ?,shadowrun next me hopes or i will be forced to buy snes version.



SyFyTy said:

I'd settle for ANY OF THEM making it to the 3ds, which it probably won't. Why offer it on the console with the lowest sales numbers? Do they think 100000, people will buy a Wii U for Earthbound? It's good but not THAT good. Seems a bit short sighted to me, but then again, this IS Nintendo we're talking about. It won't sell 'cause very few have WiiU then they'll say no one in the west wanted it.. That's their backward thinking. The same a sdone with the 3ds colors...



ManateeBlubber said:

@Havkri It's impossible because after Mother 3, Itoi's life paused and nothing happened worthy of making a game out of happened. "Today I went to the bathroom and made more people on social networks shaddap about Mother 4. It's being made by fans anyway. Who really cares?"

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