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Added Features, Enhancements, and Modifications
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Japanese menu text (top to bottom): Speak, Check, PSI, Goods.

The menu system was expanded to include two new choices in the prototype: State and Setup. Also note the slight formatting differences between the windows and changed placement of the level column in the status bar.


The prototype's new Setup screen adds several new options and improves some from the original Japanese version. The new Run command makes all sprites on the overhead mode move at double speed. The map feature is active at the beginning of the game and is controlled through a button press configurable by the player. In the Japanese version, the map must be found early in the game and "used" as a regular item. The State (status) screen can be reconfigured to any of the three buttons rather than the Japanese version's automatic mapping to the B button. Five different fight message speeds are selectable through this screen, as opposed to the Japanese version's three selectable message speeds which had to be chosen during the file select screen at the beginning of the game.

Phil Sandhop: "You can thank me for the B Button run. It was something that was added for debug, but I convinced them to keep it."

On the map feature: "I think I can claim this one. I played the game every day for months and there was a spare button. It only made sense."

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The "Look" action was added to the prototype's item submenu. This command gives a description of the selected item that often hints at its use.


Sandhop: "NCL's improvement to address concerns from the Japanese audience. They told me anything that they wanted specifically and I wrote the text."

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A similar addition was made to the in-battle "Check" command. In addition to offense and defense stats, a short description of the enemy is given.

Sandhop: "Once again, NCL's improvement, my original text."

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The prototype shows an added scrolling background effect whenever the player learns a new note.

Mother EarthBound
"What do you need?"
"Cure Poison, Soften"

The Benevolent Old Man character in Magicant performs a different function. He lets the player withdraw cash like an ATM machine instead of a choice between curing poison or softening. This is much more useful because it's easy to forget to withdraw money before warping to Magicant and the free hospital within town will cure any condition anyway.


  • The bottom floor of the dungeon in Magicant received a complete overhaul in the transition between the Japanese version and the prototype. The version of the dungeon in the prototype is more compact and contains more presents. Answering the Forgotten Man's questions was also made less annoying. In the prototype, he just starts his dialogue over if you give him an answer he doesn't like. Give the wrong answer in the Famicom version, and he warps you back to the entrance of Magicant.

    Mother EarthBound

  • The ghost house in Spookane had a few rooms removed in the prototype to make it less confusing.

  • The forest path that leads to the final dungeon is more enclosed and straightforward in the prototype. The Japanese version is more open and allows the player to stray off the main path or go the wrong way more easily.

  • The prototype has an added path between the entrance to Giegue's lair and the actual final battle. The cave containing all the kidnapped humans is located on the side of this path in the prototype rather than the earlier location of the Famicom version.


    As early as when the party gets the final two notes of Queen Mary's song, the endings of the two versions of the game have major differences. After Eve plays the seventh note in the Japanese version, the party is immediately warped back to Queen Mary, who remembers the eighth note on her own. With the song completed, the party is warped to the entrance of Giegue's lair. In the prototype, the player must complete the rest of the dungeon after getting the seventh note and get the eighth from the stone at the mountain summit. The player is then required to travel back to Magicant and see Queen Mary on their own.

    The actual ending sequence was completely redone for the prototype. The Famicom version simply shows Giegue's spaceship blasting off, the party turning towards the screen, and the credits rolling. In the prototype, the screen fades to black after the ship takes off and a much longer ending sequence begins.

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