To preface this post, I will take the time to say that I have also reviewed the other games in this series: The NES game with the most heart, Mother
, and the quirky SNES journey, Mother 2 / Earthbound.
Now, on with Mother 3.
March 9, 2008. Super Smash Bros. Brawl was released to the masses of Nintendo fans eager to beat each other up online via terrible internet server connections, and at the same time, unassuming gamers were introduced to a new character that seemed like a clone of the Ness we all know and love from Earthbound.
This boy's name was Lucas, and Lucas was in fact not a mere clone of Ness, but a deeper character. A character that suffered. A character that rose from his timid personality to save the small world he knows and loves.
The world of Mother 3.
Mother 3 is a Game Boy Advance RPG that came out in 2006, twelve years after Mother 2's story had concluded, and fans were waiting tirelessly for this one. Unlike it's predecessors, Mother 3 is kind of a mix of the modern times of the other Mother games and the fantasy we know in games like Final Fantasy and Dragon Quest. Mother 3 is also a lot more story driven, but I will get into that a little bit later.
Mother 3 plays an awful lot like Mother 2, it's totally fine with me though, because Mother 2's gameplay was damn near perfect. However, Mother 3 added the dash mechanic, and something else that ascended the gameplay into an upper echelon of pure, unadulterated fun.
What this game added was a combo system that works together with the game's immersive and toe-tapping tunes to make the gameplay just a little more fun and addictive. The player can combo by tapping the A button after selecting the fight command to the beat of the battle music to inflict up to 16 hits on the opponent and send them flying into oblivion. The game has many, many battle songs so you can work on your combos while you are leveling your characters up. This combo system is one of the many reasons why Mother 3 succeeds.
The music was also an incredible aspect of the game. The game's music has some of the coolest songs in the entire series, and for my money, some of the best music in all of video games. (see "Natural Killer Cyborg", "Strong One", and "Love Theme") The music also really nails the emotions of the tender, sad parts (there are many), pumps you up when you are battling a tough boss, and goes completely silent where it really counts.
Mother 3 is also one of the most beautiful 2D games of the past decade. The graphics are very colorful and pleasing to the eye, and the locales are all robust and very interesting to look at. The enemies are very cool looking, especially the pigmasks, chimeras, and the main villians. The main heroes are also nice to look at, and rightfully so, since you will be looking at them a lot for 20 or so hours.
There is one very important aspect of the game that I have neglected to talk about so far in this review. The story. In my opinion, the story of this game is one of the most well written, emotional, and all-around best told stories in all of video games.
The story of Mother 3 starts with the twins, Lucas and Claus playing with some dinosaur pals at their grandfather's house and their dear mother sending a letter to their father, Flint, in the faraway town of Tazmily. The story really starts rolling when the pigmask army starts a forest fire in the town of Tazmily, and the villagers work together to put it out and keep each other safe.
After that, the story keeps escalating on and on for a full 20 hours until it's heartbreaking conclusion, which you will have to play to find out. The main characters; Lucas, Boney, Duster, and Kumatora are all very likable and you really care for them as they go to save the world from the evil pigmasks.
The journey of our heroes is all well and good, but the story really shines through the quiet moments where you feel what the heroes feel. There were definitely some moments within the game's immense story that I was brought to tears.
Mother 3 is also the one game that broke my heart.
The game actually broke my heart twice.
The first time it broke my heart was with the incredibly beautiful, heart wrenching ending that nicely tied up the series as a whole (don't expect a Mother 4), and the second in the very fact that I'll never get to play it on the console it was meant for.
I really don't like to emulate much, but I made an exception for the Mother series, and Mother 3, over the course of it's incredible story, became one of, if not, my favorite game of all time. And it really leaves a hole in my heavy nerd heart that I will never get to play it on the console it was made for unless I learn Japanese.
Overall, my series of blogs on the Mother series has come to a close with one of my favorite games to ever exist, and by sharing my thoughts of these games with you all, I have become hopelessly addicted to blogging on this website, so if you liked these reviews and my other blogs, look forward to some more reviews and random musings here on Destructoid.
(All fan-art credit goes to Kurkoboltsi of deviantART