Now You’re Playing With Evil Power
Once you return to Fourside with Poo, most everyone has new stuff to say. A lot of the usual changes still apply, such as every time “demon” is mentioned in MOTHER 2, it’s replaced with “evil” or “evil power” in EarthBound.
If you stay at the hotel now, the morning paper will have a tabloid column about Lucky from the Runaway Five. In EarthBound, the headline reads, “Lucky of the Runaway Five found to have been in state House of Representatives.”
In MOTHER 2, it says something like, “Lucky of the Tonzura Brothers found to have once been a member of the student council.”
I actually like the EarthBound one better, though the phrasing could have been better and said he was “found to have been a member of” rather than just “in”.
This Bread is Nutty
In EarthBound, this lady in the Fourside bakery says, “Bread in this town has a very plain, nondescript flavor to it. To tell you the truth, I’m the owner of this bakery.”
In MOTHER 2, she actually says, “Bread in this town has a very big city delectability to it, don’t you think? To tell you the truth… I’m the owner of this bakery.”
This was definitely a mistake in the translation, or some wires got crossed during the jump from translation to editing.
One For All
Now that Monotoli has come to his senses, the cops in the town all say less-than-stellar things about him.
In EarthBound, this particular cop says, “It was stupid of me to let Monotoli do whatever he wanted.” I always thought this was weird in English – it makes it sound like this one cop in the emptiest/least-traveled part of town had serious say over Monotoli’s actions.
It turns out that this was a very simple translation mistake – it should say “It was stupid of us” instead. Just a minor detail that doesn’t change much of anything, though.
In MOTHER 2, this joke-telling guy has a new joke using word play revolving around konjac.
Because that sort of word play usually doesn’t work across languages, a similar line was used instead, using that “I scream for ice cream” thing.
Booze It Up
I mentioned this before, but I thought I’d touch on it again quickly, as it turns up again here.
In MOTHER 2, this establishment is called “Boris’ Bar” or “Boris’ Pub”. Because it uses what I assume is the Russian pronunciation, it isn’t clear at all how it’s supposed to be spelled without doing a bit of Internet research.
Because such resources weren’t available at the time, the translators didn’t seem to know what to call this place in English. So, along with it being changed to a “cafe” for censoring purposes, the place simply became “Jackie’s cafe” or just other generic terms like “this sidewalk cafe”, as we see here.
Disgruntled Cop Badmouths Rich Man
Another cop in Fourside talks bad about Monotoli after he’s gone back to being a normal old guy.
In MOTHER 2, he says something that can be translated many ways, but is basically quite rude. Something like, “Now Monotoli can kiss my butt!” Maybe even ruder.
In EarthBound, it got toned down a bit to say, “Now I feel like Mr. Monotoli should eat my shorts.”
The interesting thing about this line is that in Japanese, he says his really rude line, then acknowledges Ness very politely. That juxtaposition is a big point of the line. That jump from “very rude” to “very polite” isn’t as big in English.
It’s definitely not a big deal, almost not even worth mentioning. Essentially, the toning down of the short phrase in his line weakened the whole of his text a bit.
The guy drinking outside the bar/cafe in Fourside has some new text:
|MOTHER 2 (literal)||EarthBound|
|＊hic＊ I ain’t ＊hic＊ drunk at all. ＊hic＊|
These are hiccups.
Seriously ＊hic＊ I’m telling the truth.
Look me in the eye if you want!
|Hic! I’m fine.|
I’m not drinking the… hic!
I hate these hiccups…
Yes, they’re… hic!
Another cappucino here!
After you get Venus to autograph a banana, she kisses you. In EarthBound, she basically says, “Smack!” with no other hints. I think when I first played the game as a kid, my first thought was that she had smacked Ness! Seconds later, realizing that she had kissed him instead, of course.
In Japanese, it’s very clearly just the kissing onomatopoeia. “Smooch!” would probably have been a clearer translation choice.
Of Rabbits and Men
The Carrot Key in EarthBound is actually called something like “Rabbits’ Favorite Carrot”. It’s a weird name and tough to translate into anything sounding decent. So calling it the “Carrot Key” was a logical choice.
The item’s description even sort of explains what it really is, instead of a key:
This section of the EarthBound Legends of Localization book also includes:
- Further details on the Japanese and English jokes the jokester says in Fourside’s bar/cafe, including a close-up photo of the Japanese food being referenced