EarthBound Timeline (provided by Kenny Sutherland)
The purpose of this timeline is to help clarify the order of events that took place in the creation and cancellation of the unreleased Nintendo Entertainment System role-playing game EarthBound. This timeline is a supplement to the Lost Levels article Spotlight: EarthBound, written by Jonathan Wirth.
To fully appreciate the entire history of the game, you must understand the companies, people, and games involved in the story of EarthBound.
NCL: Nintendo Company, Limited. This is the name that Nintendo of Japan is commonly referred to both internally and by the public.
NOA: Nintendo of America. This is Nintendo's corporate presence in the United States of America.
NOCL: Nintendo of Canada, Limited. This is Nintendo's corporate presence in Canada.
EAD: Entertainment, Analysis, and Development. Nintendo EAD was one of Nintendo's primary game development studios.
Shigesato Itoi: The creator of the Mother series, he was also the Director of both Mother and EarthBound.
Shigeru Miyamoto: The general manager of Nintendo Company, Limited, he was also the Producer of both Mother and EarthBound.
Hiroshi Yamauchi: The president of Nintendo Company, Limited, he was also the Executive Producer of both Mother and EarthBound. Mr. Yamauchi retired as Nintendo president on May 31, 2002.
Hiro Yamada: An employee of Nintendo Company, Limited, he has been credited with working on a variety of projects for Nintendo.
Phil Sandhop: An employee of Nintendo of America, he worked for over a decade as Product Analyst/Specialist for the company. He was also both the English Script Writer and the Localization Director for the NES EarthBound project.
Mother: A Japanese role-playing game released on the Family Computer (Famicom) in Japan.
Mother 2: A Japanese role-playing game released on the Super Family Computer (Super Famicom) in Japan. The sequel to Mother.
EarthBound: An unreleased role-playing game for the Nintendo Entertainment System (NES) in North America. EarthBound was to have been the translation of the original Mother, but the game was never released.
EarthBound: A role-playing game released on the Super Nintendo Entertainment System (SNES) in North America. The translation of Mother 2, this game was given the title EarthBound when the original planned-for-release NES EarthBound was not published.
Rough timeline of events
July 27, 1989: Mother is released on the Famicom in Japan.
November/December 1990: A small preview of the upcoming NES game EarthBound is displayed in the "Pak Watch" section of Volume 18 of Nintendo Power magazine.
November 1990 to March 1991: A small preview of the NES game EarthBound is displayed in the "Coming Later" section of Volumes 18, 20, 21, and 22 of Nintendo Power magazine.
November 21, 1990: The Super Family Computer was released in Japan.
May 1991: A small preview of the NES game EarthBound is displayed in the "Coming Soon" section
of Volume 24 of
August 1991: The Super Nintendo Entertainment System was released in North America.
January 1994: Mother is mentioned in the "Only In Japan" article in Volume 56, page 64 of Nintendo Power magazine.
February 21, 1994: This is the date on the label on the EarthBound prototype cartridge. This is the date that the cartridge was created.
March 15, 1994: This is the due date on the label on the EarthBound prototype cartridge. This is the date that the cartridge was due to be returned to its point of origin.
August 27, 1994: Mother 2 is released on the Super Famicom in Japan.
December 10, 1994: Wario's Woods is released on the NES in North America, and is the last licensed game published by Nintendo for the NES.
June 1, 1995: EarthBound is released on the Super Nintendo in North America.
January 15, 1998: A prototype cartridge of the NES game EarthBound is offered for sale on the internet newsgroup rec.games.video.classic.
April 27, 1998: A backup copy of the NES EarthBound prototype was released to the public. There is much debate over the authenticity of the game.
June 20, 2003: Mother 1+2 was released on the GameBoy Advance in Japan. The version of Mother released in the compilation included all of the changes made to the NES EarthBound prototype.