Article: Earthbound (SNES)

The full review for the SNES Classic Earthbound is finally up on the site. It has taken a long time, but it was quite the enjoyable experience.

You can read the Full Review Here. I hope you enjoy it!

Of course, If you haven’t been following Ness and company for their entire adventure, why not Start At The Beginning.

Earthbound – The End

–The End–

It has taken a long time to get here, but we are finally ready for our final battle with the ultimate evil, Giygas. We approach cautiously, and Giygas responds in turn by producing Ness’s face on his…um…eye? I’m just going to say eye, but in all honestly it looks like it’s something much different and it’s giving birth to a new Ness. Thankfully, Porky shows up out of nowhere. That’s certainly not a phrase I thought I would be saying, but he does manage to cover up Giygas for the moment.

Anyway, Porky starts ranting about how the Apple of Enlightenment foretold Ness and company coming here to defeat Giygas. However, Porky plans to ruin that prediction. Led by Giygas, he has fought his way ahead of us to show up here as well, which is something the Apple of Enlightenment never predicted.

However, all that effort has twisted Porky beyond Giygas’s original plans. In Porky’s mind, Giygas is no longer the wielder of ultimate evil, but has become the embodiment of evil itself. As such, he no longer has any control of it.

After that exchange, the battle truly begins, and I must admit, we didn’t get off to a good start. Apparently direct attacks on Giygas have absolutely no effect on him. In fact, they reflect back at the attacker. So it’s quite unfortunate that we started the battle with a very aggressive opening assault. This resulted in heavy damage and casualties on our side.

Following such a terrible opening, it’s going to take us some time before we can properly regroup. The next couple rounds are mostly filled with reviving, healing, and reviving again. All the while, Porky is over there discharging a very stinky gas on us. So basically he’s farting on us as we’re trying to recover. This causes no damage, or even status effects, but it does lower everyone’s defense.

We eventually regroup a bit and manage to send a few attacks flying. Of course, attacking Giygas is completely futile at this point. The same cannot be said for Porky though. He may be heavily armored at the moment, but that won’t protect him forever.

Once he has taken enough damage, Porky starts right back up with his taunting. He mocks us for calling ourselves heroes and claims it’s a gazillion years too soon for us to be trying to oppose Giygas.

He then comments that we must feel really stupid for not even knowing what Giygas looks like. So apparently what we’ve been fighting so far is not in fact Giygas’s true body. According to Porky, if we were to actually see Giygas we would be petrified with fear.

After this, Porky turns off the “Devil’s Machine” which has been housing Giygas thus far. Free of the device, the eyeball like apparatus we’ve been fighting disappears. The pipes that once connected to it also start to warp and fade away as well.

Now free, Giygas apparently can no longer think rationally anymore. He has apparently destroyed his own mind with his own incredible power. We can barely hope to match such power, and Porky gloats that we’ll simply become another meal for Giygas.

In his new form, Giygas has essentially lost any kind of physical body and is instead warping in the background. Even his attacks have lost all sense of logic to the degree that the party can’t even make out the attack’s true form. We just see a wave of energy coming our way and causing severe damage.

Thankfully, the attacks in this form are a bit more manageable. It also helps that Porky has left us for this portion of the battle and we’re only fighting Giygas now. As such we manage to patch everybody up rather quickly and manage to put up a decent fight of our own now.

Before long, Porky shows up once again to continue his verbal assault. He looks down on us as the only fools still fighting for justice even though, in his eyes, we’re nothing more than garbage waiting to be burned up with the rest of the trash. The very sight is bringing him to tears with laughter.

The taunting goes on that we must be scared to death in our current situation. He wouldn’t be surprised if any second we started calling out for our mother and father, begging for help because we’re about to wet our pants. In fact, he encourages us even try calling for help, because no one will come.

Once again, Giygas’s form changes and becomes even more unstable. With nothing left to lose, we go all out with our attacks. If we don’t win here, then what was the point of everything we’ve been through until now?

The battle rages on for nearly a half hour after this. We end up using nearly our whole supply of healing items just keeping the assault going. With resources growing thin, Poo is the first party member to fall. His equipment apparently isn’t up the task of deflecting Giygas’s instant kill attacks, and it simply isn’t worth it to keep attempting to revive him. So sadly, poo will remain unconscious for the remainder of the battle.

As we use up the last of our items, Jeff is the next to fall. Though his tech was impressive, he ultimately wasn’t up to the task. He too will sadly not see the end of this battle…

Ness and Paula are the only two that remain now, fighting the losing battle side by side. But even though Giygas seems to be growing more unstable by the minute, even now, they still can’t grasp the true nature of Giygas’s attacks.

Backed into a corner, and with little hope left of winning this battle, Paula takes a gamble and prays for help. We’ve actually mostly avoided using this ability for most of the game. I never did figure out its true mechanics, but the few times when I did use it, it was disastrous for everyone, casting multiple status effects to friend and foe alike. Maybe we’ll get lucky this time and something good will happen.

To our amazement, her prayers actually reached someone. It wasn’t god like we were hoping for, but it seems to have caught the attention of the Mr. Saturns, Dr. Andonuts, and Apple kid back in Saturn Valley. Sensing we were in trouble, they prayed for our safety.

This seems to be exactly what we needed to do all along. After receiving their prayers, Giygas’s defenses become unstable. Now vulnerable, Giygas changes form yet again. This may be the turning point to the battle we have been waiting for. With Giygas now in distress, Paula prays for more help from anyone that will listen.

Paula’s voice echoed out to Summers and catches the attention of the Runaway Brothers. Without truly knowing why, they also started praying for our safety.

Still Paula continues to pray for help. Her pleas find their way home where her father hears her voice. Gathering the whole school together they too prayed for our safety.

As Paula prays, her voice carries all the way to Winters where Tony suddenly feels anxious about his friend Jeff. Together with the rest of the classmates, they too begin to pray.

Even in the distant land of Dalaam they can sense that their Prince Poo is in danger. Wishing the feeling to be just a dream they begin to pray for our safety as well.

Not only friends, but former foes are even sensing our danger. We need look to further than Frank back in Onett. Recalling Ness’s Shining Face, Frank too begins to pray for us.

We then turn our attention to Ness’s house. With the sky darkened and monsters everywhere, they know all too well the danger Ness and company are in. Feeling uneasy, no doubt from mother’s intuition, she prays for her son and his friends.

At this point, Giygas becomes unstable almost beyond recognition. The prayers are affecting him more than we could have thought. He is far from defeated though as Ness uses the last of his strength keeping the two of them alive for the fight.

As the tension builds, Paula forces herself to continue praying. But at this point, she can’t think of anyone else to pray to. So she prays to anyone that will listen, anyone willing to help us fight off this ultimate evil. Sadly, her effects are in vain, as the prayer was absorbed by the darkness.

She refuses to give up now and she begins to pray even harder. She doesn’t make a clear connection, but someone she’s never met begins to pray for them as well.

The battle spirals out of control from here as the mysterious person continues to pray harder and harder. As the connection becomes clearer, we see that it is us, the player, the writer and you readers here at praying for the safety of our heroes.

With our combined power, Giygas is dealt a massive blow. This single attack is enough to defeat the ultimate evil and send it spiraling out of control.

Porky however simply can’t admit defeat, coming to taunt us one last time before running away. But with the power he has already gained through his own adventures, he threatens to return sometime with a new plan of his own. Then we’ll see which of them is really the coolest.

With that, Porky disappears as Giygas crumbles into an indiscernible mass. Eventually he can’t even sustain this much and collapses into himself, hopefully never to return again.

The battle may be won, but the four of us aren’t exactly in the greatest of shape. Just as Dr. Andonuts said, it doesn’t look like we’ll be capable of making it back to our bodies, even if we have defeated Giygas. As the battlefield quiets, the souls of the children start to rise out of the robot bodies one by one.

Amazingly, the souls find their own way back to their bodies in Saturn Valley. As the souls float down the children awake once again in their human bodies. So it looks like we may have a happy ending after all.

With our battle won and our adventure over, we all begin to go our separate ways. The first to leave is Poo who must return to Dalaam and use his new found experience for the good of his country. He says his farewells and then disappears in a puff of smoke.

Jeff is the next to say his farewell. He thanks us for allowing him to tag along, and he’s happy to have been able to put some of his studies to use. Strangely he also comments that if Paula and Ness were ever to get married, he’d be willing to come over occasionally to fix our broken electronics for us.

He doesn’t return to the Boarding School however. Instead he chooses to stay here with Dr. Andonuts, who he finally starts calling Dad. The two of them have a lot of catching up to do now that they accept each other as family. Dr. Andonuts is also one of the smartest people alive, so Jeff will surely benefit from his expertise.

Now that only Ness and Paula remain, she asks Ness if he would be willing to escort her home. With Giygas defeated and our adventure over, she needs to return to being just a normal kid again.

Before we head on our way home, we go around and say our farewells to everyone as well. It has been a long adventure, and they have all helped us in their own way. We’re going to miss them all.

With everything said and done, we quickly teleport away to Twoson and escort Paula back to the Polestar Elementary School where she lives. Paula is hesitant to leave, saying goodbye several times before slowly walking away and inside.

We of course check in with her parents before we leave, we don’t want to be rude after all. Her parents are very accepting of our relationship. Actually they’re a bit too accepting. I don’t think Ness even accepted the relationship. But Paula’s mother is happy that we live so close by, and offers to make pizza for us whenever we come over. Her father is also amazingly accepting of us dating his daughter, going so far as to suggest we sleep over sometime. Sleep in his room of course, it would be inappropriate for Paula and Ness to actually sleep together.

Finally, Ness returns home as well. The monsters that once roamed the streets are gone now, and the skies have cleared. Everything seems to be back to normal for a change. We head inside where our mother is waiting, she asks us to tell her all about our adventure and the screen fades to black…

Before the credits roll, the game goes through a cast call of all the characters we’ve encountered in our adventure. I love when games do this. Sometimes it’s the only way you ever learn the names of some of the characters.

Once more, the Photographer shows up, this time facing the fourth wall, and takes our picture for a change. With that, the staff credits roll and show off all the pictures taken throughout our adventure.

After the credits, Ness is awoken in the middle of the night by a loud knocking on the door. We rush to answer it and find that it’s Picky with a letter from his brother Porky. Apparently Porky wanted one last taunt in before the end.

And at long last, our adventure truly comes to an end. Or has it? … Yes, it has. At least this game has. Thank you for joining us on this adventure. I hope it was as much fun for you as it was for me.

Earthbound – Day 66

–Day 66–

It’s time for our final preparations to fight Giygas. We already have what I think is the best equipment we can buy for everyone. So really the only thing we can do right now is empty our pockets of any useless items and stuff them full of the best healing items we can find. As far as I’m concerned, that means buying as many Brain Food Lunches as we can hold. When eaten, the Brain Food Lunches restore 300 HP and 50 PP, making it both very powerful and the two for one aspect of it makes it very convenient given our extremely limited inventory space.

With everyone fully stocked and ready for battle, we return to Saturn Valley and Dr. Andonuts. Together we board the Phase Distorter Version 2, and in an instant it starts to vanish away. Just like that we are teleported away to any unknown area to fight Giygas.

No sooner do we get out of the Phase Distorter, we are stopped once more by the old man who trained Poo. He apparently has one last lesson to pass onto the young prince. Thankfully, he doesn’t have to steal him away this time, he just instantly teachers Poo PK Starstorm Ω and vanishes without a trace.

We continue on the path and discover we are in the same cave we saw earlier while exploring the Lost Underworld. We’re now on the platform with the broken Phase Distorter and the weird silver hair thing. There is also the kidnapped Mr. Saturn who seems happy to see us. However, there is nowhere for us to go on this platform, and the hair doesn’t teleport us anywhere like I expected. So I’m not really sure what we’re expected to do here.

As if reading our very thoughts, Dr. Andonuts, Apple Kid, and a Mr. Saturn arrive in the newly created Phase Distorter Version 3. They also inform us that Giygas is in fact attacking from this location. However, he is doing so from many years in the past.

This of course it some terrible news, how are we supposed to travel to the past? Is the Phase Distorter Version 3 also a time machine? Both Dr. Andonuts and Apple Kid seem to want to tell us more, but something seems to be holding them back…

For some reason Dr. Andonuts suddenly walks off out of earshot of the rest of the group. We follow to talk to him and he informs us that the Phase Distorter Version 3 is in fact capable of time travel. This is WONDERFUL news! Unfortunately, there is a catch, the machine CAN travel to the past, but it is incapable of warping living creatures with it.

Dr. Andonuts has of course come up with a solution to this problem, but I must admit, it’s not a very appealing one. He suggests transferring our souls into robotic bodies. That way, they will be able to travel back in time using the machine. He unfortunately can’t promise that he will be able to reverse the processes. Essentially, he’s asking us to willingly give our lives for the greater good of the world.

He gives us one last chance to back out, but of course, that isn’t really an option, is it? We’re the heroes destined to defeat Giygas. It is our fate to give our lives to defend the world. And so we all reluctantly agree to have our souls transferred into robotic bodies.

One by one, Dr. Andonuts transfers us into our robotic bodies. We then all gather inside the Phase Distorter Version 3 ready to travel back in time. He says his final farewells to us all, even acknowledging Jeff as his son in what is his first genuine fatherly moment.

As the Phase Distorter Version 3 activates, Dr. Andonuts makes one last speech to us. He commends us for his bravery, noting that only a few people will know the truth about what happened, but we will be saving all the people of the world through our efforts. He also mentions how fortunate he feels to be present for such an important event in human history.

With those final words from Dr. Andonuts, the Phase Distorter fully activates and starts its travels into the past. We arrive as safely as can be considering our current situation, but I can’t help but feel a bit uneasy. The past just feels so cold, and lifeless, made all the worse by our current robotic figures. In a word, it’s depressing. We can’t be down now though, we have to find Giygas and defeat him, for the good of all mankind.

As would be expected, the whole area is full of Giygas’s Followers, and we’re going to have quite a few battles on our hands before we actually make it to the mastermind himself. Thankfully, the path is rather straightforward, with no branching paths or anything to get lost in.

We do our best to avoid battles when possible, and end them quickly when it isn’t possible. Using what we’ve learned, we know when to run rather than fight, and to conserve our PP until the times it really matters. We have the whole of Mankind in the balance, we can’t afford to make it to Giygas too weak to fight.

As I mentioned before, there really weren’t any branching paths to get lost in, however, we had a bit of a startle about halfway through the cave when we came upon a mysterious floating orb. Given our situation, it wouldn’t have surprised us to be some massive enemy. However, it was simply another teleportation device which transported us to distant section of the cave.

One more warp later, and we find ourselves in front of a small crack in the cave wall at the end of the path. Passing through the opening we are confronted with a mass of pulsating pipes resembling intestines. Here, there are no longer any enemies to fight as we make our way to our greatest foe.

And there at the end of the path, in a very disturbing and unsettling mass, is Giygas. Words can’t properly describe what we’re looking at now, partially because I’m not quite sure what it is we’re looking at right now, but I just know this is the end of our adventure.

With only one thing left to do, I’m sure you’re all excited to see this to the end, but that will have to wait until next time. Will we be able to defeat the ultimate evil? Or will we fall and allow darkness to consume the world? Join us next time to see the exciting conclusion for yourselves!

Earthbound – Day 65

–Day 65–

We’re so close now to defeating Giygas and saving the world. All that stands in our way now is retrieving a piece of the meteorite to power the Phase Distorter. So we head back to Onett without delay. Unfortunately, we arrive to find things have changed quite a bit in our absence. The whole town seems to be shrouded in an unnatural darkness, and Giygas’s followers seem to have taken over the town.

I know we need to hurry, but I can’t help but check in with Ness’s Mother and make sure she’s doing ok. Obviously everyone in town is scared of the monsters, and have barricaded themselves inside their homes. But she’s being strong about the whole situation.

We leave Ness’s home and his mother and make our way to the meteorite crash site just as we did at the beginning of our adventure. We are of course much stronger now, but so are the enemies. The one to look out for though is The Ghost of Starman. Any encounter with one of them is in itself a brush with death, as they open every battle with a devastating PK Starstorm α. Thankfully, they don’t attack again for a couple of turns, giving us time to recover.

Even with all these strong enemies around, the path up to the Meteorite isn’t a long one, and we quickly make the journey. Looking down at the meteorite, we notice a particularly shiny piece which we pick up for ourselves. Now that we have what we came for, we waste no time and quickly teleport back to Saturn Valley.

We hand over the meteorite piece to Dr. Andonuts who admits to have never actually seen such a rare element before. However, with the combined knowledge of Dr. Andonuts, Apple Kid, and the highly intelligent Mr. Saturns, they are confident they can make use of it. We just need to rest for now and give them time to work.

After resting, we awake to find the Phase Distorter version two has been completed. Before we hop aboard though, Dr. Andonuts strongly warns us that once we use it, we may never be able to come back. So before heading off to fight Giygas, we need to make any last preparations now.

So with that in mind, we go on one last shopping spree to make sure we have everything we need. This may take a while, so we’re going to end the post here. Join us next time as we make our final approach towards our destiny. See you there!

Earthbound – Day 64

–Day 64–

The environment might be a little weird, but our goal is still the same, make it to the end of the area in one piece. So we stock up on as many Magic Puddings as we can carry, don’t ask where we’re storing them in our current naked state, and head out on our adventure. It would seem the town has quite a few residents. Some aren’t so happy to see us in our current state, while others seem to have had a change of heart.

But we can’t get caught up with our memories of people we’ve met, we need to press on farther into Magicant and eventually leave the safety of the town. There is one last stop however, right on the edge of town is a house full of Flying Men. These Flying Men will join Ness in his adventure and help battle the enemies to come. Unfortunately only one will follow you at a time.

The enemies in this area are rather tricky, disguising themselves as presents and tricking us into walking right into them. The most frequent enemy early on seemed to be the Loaded Dice. On its own, it’s not a difficult enemy to defeat. However, it is capable of calling other enemies to join the battle. In one particularly unlucky encounter, Ness’ attacks kept missing round after round until the Loaded Dice had summoned several enemies to the battle, forcing us to run rather than continue fighting.

There aren’t many branching paths to explore here, so it doesn’t take long before we’re at a dead end. Curiously, there seems to be some kind of large silver hair growing out of the ground at the end of our path. Closer examination of the hair ends up teleporting us to some strange lake area.

If it weren’t bad enough that Ness is now swimming around naked in this weird color changing water, the whole area seems to be full of Kraken. Back when we first encountered the Kraken, it took the full party’s combined effort as well as a good amount of luck for us to defeat it. Now it would seem Ness alone has become strong enough to accomplish this on his own.

Ness keeps swimming until eventually coming upon the Mani Mani Statue, once again here to cause trouble. This time, it would seem it is here to represent the evil within Ness’ own heart. In order to save the world from Giygas, Ness must first defeat his own evil thoughts.

Despite being alone in this battle, the Mani Mani statue, now named “Ness’s Nightmare”, is not all that powerful. It seems to use PK Gaming α nearly every attack, which only does about 75 damage each turn. When not casting PK Gaming α, it will emit a glorious light, which rarely has any effect on Ness thanks to his equipment.

Before long, Ness’s Nightmare is defeated. Upon victory, Ness hears a familiar voice talking to him from the Sea of Eden. It tells him that Giygas threatens to destroy the entire universe. But Giygas and his followers are scared, because the Apple of Enlightenment has already foretold that Giygas will fail, all because of Ness. It is his destiny to stop Giygas.

As Magicant fades away, the voice gives one last piece of advice. Go to Saturn Valley. What we need is waiting for us there. After this, the powers from all eight of the My Sanctuary locations come together to fill Ness with power beyond anything before possible. All of his stats are drastically increase to a point that he is as strong as the other three party members combined.

With that, Magicant is no more, as Ness has taken the whole of its powers into himself. With no further purpose, the Sound Stone disappears, and Ness finally wakes up to his friends. Together, they all teleport off to Saturn Valley to see what new power is waiting for them there.

It would seem the combined power of Mr. Saturn, Apple Kid, and Dr. Andonuts has made short work out of creating the Phase Distorter. In fact, this is actually the second prototype of the device. Apparently the first one has already been stolen, no doubt by Porky. On top of stealing the device, he also took a Mr. Saturn hostage.

Unfortunately, the second prototype isn’t quite ready for use. Apparently we’re missing a key element which is very rare on Earth. This element can however be found in meteorites. Dr. Andonuts apparently discovered it back when he was very young, but he hasn’t been able to find any more since. Lucky for us, we happen to know the exact location of a recently crashed meteorite. In fact, it’s how this whole adventure began.

With just a small piece of the meteorite, Dr. Andonuts will be able to make Zexonyte to power the Phase Distorter. However, it doesn’t seem like it will be an easy task to recover it. Giygas is sure to already be aware of our need of the meteorite and has sent his followers to guard it. We’ll have to prepare accordingly before we head out.

For now, we’re going to rest here in Saturn Village. Join us next time as we head back to where it all began and try to collect a piece of the meteorite. See you there!

Earthbound – Day 63

–Day 63–

Today we continue our push through the Fire Spring as we attempt to claim the final My Sanctuary location. Using what we’ve learned from the previous areas, we’re actually trying to avoid combat as much as possible at the moment. We can finish exploring after we defeat the boss. That way all the monsters will be avoiding us and we can explore at our leisure.

With that mindset, it isn’t long before we make our way through to the boss. This final My Sanctuary boss is the Carbon Dog, and thankfully we made it here with a good amount of HP and PP. We’re going to need every bit of it as this ends up becoming a rather long battle.

At first, it doesn’t really feel like a difficult boss. The only attack it seemed to do was spitting fireballs at single party members. Sure it did a decent amount of damage, but it was nothing we couldn’t handle. After a couple of rounds though, something unexpected happened. All of a sudden the Carbon Dog gave off a rainbow of colors!

Just like that, the Carbon Dog transformed into the Diamond Dog! With its new form, it also has some new attacks. The main attack it seems to use is a regular biting attack, which does rather significant damage to whoever it bites. Since it’s only a single target attack, this also isn’t anything we can’t handle. It also helps that for some reason it will regularly waste its turn by making a loud piercing howl. The Diamond Dog does have quite a bit of health, so the battle takes a long time, and we end up using most of our healing items. But we eventually defeat the Diamond Dog and get to claim the final My Sanctuary location.

We continue through the opening and make our way to the actual Fire Spring, which looks like a very tiny volcano. Here, Ness has a feeling that he was being watched by himself as a baby. He then uses the Sound Stone to record the melody of the Fire Spring, completing the collection.

As soon as we are done recording the melody, the Sound Stone starts reacting all on its own. It starts playing all the collected melodies one at a time before finally blending them all together into a single song. Ness then finds himself in a dream-like state, walking down a path, alone, towards his house. Upon reaching the house Ness seems to fade from existence.

Now seemingly invisible, we follow Ness as he makes his way through his house and ultimately up to his own room. There we find baby Ness in his crib as his parents, also invisible, talk to and about him. We have apparently traveled back to when Ness was first named, and the happy reaction he had to hearing his own name. We also learn that Ness was given his signature red hat as a newborn and has apparently cherished it his entire life.

We watch the scene unfold a short while longer, after which we wake up in a rather strange environment. Not only that, but for some reason Ness is completely naked. Talking to the wise man near us, we discover we are inside Ness’ mind in a place called Magicant. Apparently this place is the end result of collecting all eight of the Sanctuary melodies.

While this place does contain all the good that is inside Ness, it also contains all his evil thoughts. At the center of it all is The Sea of Eden, which is where we must go next. I’m not sure what we’ll find there, but it doesn’t look like we have much choice in the matter.

If Magicant wasn’t weird enough already, I do want to point out that the whole color pallet seems to fluctuate wildly as we explore. It seems like it changes every time I talk to someone, but that might just be a coincidence. And for no reason, I want to point out these flowers. I’m not sure what it is, but they remind me of evil for some reason…

Anyway, there isn’t a whole lot to do here in Magicant. At the Northeast corner of town, we find Ness’ mother and sister, still performing their normal duties of healing and storage respectively. There is also a small store in town with only two items to buy, Magic Pudding which restores PP, and the Earth Pendant which gives a decent protection against all of the PK Elements.

I’m not entirely sure what we’re supposed to be doing here, but we’re going to have to figure that out another time. Join us next time as we explore Magicant and see how twisted Ness’ mind really is!

Earthbound – Day 62

–Day 62–

Thanks in part to the number of large dinosaurs roaming the area, exploration of the Lost Underworld is initially quite slow. However, we do quickly come across a small village of Tenda living inside a small fenced in area. Or rather, we have landed inside their dinosaur cage, if we are to see things from their perspective. After smelling the Tendakraut, which incidentally was given to us by the Tenda Chief in exchange for the Overcoming shyness book, this group of Tenda immediately let us out of the dinosaur cage and into their village.

While things in the village are still hard to make out thanks to the tiny size of all the sprites, there is one thing that stands out in town, another talking rock. Surely this is the talkative rock the first rock we encountered must have been referring to. In an unsurprising twist, this rock reveals that Ness is “The Chosen One” and that it is his destiny to become one with every part of the universe.

After listing off all seven My Sanctuary locations we’ve been to already, the talking stone indicates the whereabouts of the final My Sanctuary, The Fire Spring. It is apparently located southwest of our current location. With that information, and one final push of encouragement, we set off to reclaim the final My Sanctuary.

As we leave the village, we decide to circle around to the north side of the village to check in on a random Tenda walking around outside the village. This ends up bringing our spirits down a little as it confirms Porky to be alive and well. Apparently he remains one step ahead of us and has already said some mean things to this poor Tenda. So mean in fact that it needs to heal itself in one of the hot springs.

Anyway, start to make our way southwest when we come across a cave, and with it two mysteries. First, there is an enemy outside that appears to be the moon. We didn’t fight it, and the whole time we were down here we never saw another one, but I can’t help but wonder what we missed out on. The other mystery is what we find inside the small cave. It leads to a small platform with nowhere to go. However, we can see other platforms nearby which have some weird metal hair growing out of the ground as well as what looks like a destroyed sky walker. What does it all mean? I hope we find out soon!

In any event, it isn’t the cave we’re looking for, so we continue heading south. That’s when we noticed a present on the ground. It was a bit out of the way, but for some reason I felt it was worth it to take the detour. As luck would have it, inside this present we found the Cloak of Kings, the final piece of armor for Poo. I’m glad we made the little detour required to find this present, I could have just as easily walked past it and never thought twice about it. Because really, who would expect to find such a rare item just randomly waiting in a present box in the overworld?

With Poo now fully equipped, we make the final trek to the Fire Springs. From the outside, it doesn’t appear to be anything special, just another cave set into the side of the mountains. Inside however is another story entirely. The whole area appears to be overflowing with lava and of course all of the enemies seem to be some form of living fire. I guess I can’t say I was expecting anything different from the “Fire Spring”.

It’s feeling a bit redundant to keep saying it at this point, but initial progress was slow as we learned about all the new enemies we’d be facing. However, we’ve learned a lot from the last couple caves we’ve been in, and we quickly get a good feel for the various enemies we’ll find. For example, the Soul Consuming Flame isn’t a huge threat and can be dealt with quickly with a couple of PK Freeze γ attacks. The Psychic Psycho (red) and Major Psychic Psycho (purple) however can quickly become a real pain in the ass.

We only make it about half way through the cave today before finding a small room to rest in. We’ll finish exploring tomorrow, so join us then as we reclaim our final My Sanctuary Location. Don’t miss it!

Earthbound – Day 61

–Day 61–

We return to the Tenda Village and once again try to make our way through the cave system of the Lost Underground. Learning from our previous mistakes, we proceeded through the cave with a much higher level of caution, trying to avoid another run in with the Conducting Spirit. We do however run into a couple more talking rocks, though none of them give us any useful information.

We also managed to find a very useful item in one of the presents, The Diadem of Kings. This is the second piece of exclusive equipment for Poo we’ve managed to find, and we of course equip it right away. Every little bit of armor helps and we’re looking forward to getting Poo a complete set of equipment eventually.

After many twists and turns, we eventually come upon the guardian of the seventh My Sanctuary location, the Electro Specter. After the last battle, we may have gone into this one with a bit of undeserved confidence, and that definitely got us into trouble.

For starters, The Electro Specter has a PK Shield up at the start of the battle. This is something we didn’t account for, and something that caused us a fair amount of trouble the first round as everyone launched their PK Attacks just to have them rebound. That’s of course on top of the Electro Specter’s own Electrical Shock attacks which caused significant damage when they hit.

It took a few rounds for everyone to recover, but we eventually all got back on our feet. It helps that all those PK Attacks ended up destroying its shield, and we’re free to go all out once again. Thanks to a well appreciated SMASH attack from Ness, we come back to make short work of the Electro Specter and claim another My Sanctuary.

The cave system that makes up the My Sanctuary location, named Lumine Hall, is quite different from the cave that came before it. In fact, it quite resembles a large LED message screen. To drive that point home further, it actually does scroll a message across its wall as we get near to it. “I’m Ness… It’s been a long road getting here… Soon, I’ll be… Soon, I’ll be… Soon, I’ll be… what will happen to us? W… what’s happening? My thoughts are being written out on the wall… or are they?”

After this message, Ness sees a vision of his father holding him. Then the Sound Stone again recorded the melody of the area. With that, there is only one location left for us to discover before we have recorded the melody from all eight locations.

We continue through the cave and eventually fall down through a hole in the floor. This immediately feels like it was a terrible mistake as we find ourselves in a large overworld full of what looks like giant dinosaurs. You may have also noticed that we have become tiny in comparison. We can barely even see ourselves on the screen anymore.

There are quite a few dinosaurs roaming around, but they seem to mostly fall into two types, Wetnosaurs and Chomposaurs. The Wetnosaurs actually aren’t that bad. They have a good amount of health, but aren’t that big of a threat. The Chomposaurs however are a bit more dangerous. They will regularly cast PK Fire α on the party, causing decent damage to everyone. They also have a Shield up causing physical attacks to deflect back.

With all these dinosaurs roaming around, we’re relieved to find an evacuation site set up. It appears to have a couple of Tenda inside already, but that’s hard to truly confirm with the tiny sprites. Either way, the one gives us some advice for exploring the area. There are frequent earthquakes around here which cause the hot springs to erupt. The blue springs are apparently good for recovering health, while the red springs are good for recovering from status effects. We’ll have to keep that in mind as we explore.

However, we’re going to have to spend the night here at the evacuation site. Join us next time as we properly explore this land of giant monsters! See you then!

Earthbound – Day 60

–Day 60–

Now that all the Tenda have been cured of their shyness, we can finally ask for the help of the one strong Tenda to move the boulder blocking the path to the Lost Underworld. He of course is very willing to help, throwing the boulder so high into the air that it in fact never returns.

We quickly descend down the hole and find ourselves face to face with a talking rock. It doesn’t give us much information, but it does inform us of a more talkative rock to be found up ahead. He even emphasizes the fact that we should seek out that rock to talk to.

So with just that little bit of push, we head straight into another dungeon maze full of monsters. At first, this one feels like a walk in the park compared to the alien base we just cleared out. There may be a lot of monsters here, but so many of them seem to be Fobbies, stronger versions of the Foppies we encountered back in the base behind the waterfall. These guys attack in large groups, but they are so weak that the whole group can be killed with a single PK Fire γ.

There are a lot of branching paths to this maze, which makes it hard to navigate, but for the most part I thought we were doing pretty well. That all changed after a rather unlucky encounter with a Conducting Spirit. With a single PK Flash β he managed to knock out three of our party members, leaving only Jeff alive but crying.

We were forced to run away from the battle and quickly use an Exit Mouse to get back to the Tenda Village. I wasn’t expecting such a quick defeat like that, and we’re going to have to plan so it doesn’t happen again. With that in mind, we head back home to talk to Tracy and organize all our items.

This could take a while, we have a lot of junk in storage that we really need to sort through and probably sell most of it. So rather than stick around, why not just join us next time as we try again to make it through the Lost Underworld. See you then.