Arsonist Plays Earthbound

So I mentioned in the likes thread that the first thing I did after getting my SNES classic was fire up earthbound, and I’m doing a forum run on it.

@FunkJunkie (As FunkJ) as Ness
@Arsonist (As Arse) as Paula
@TemetNosce (As Temet) as Jeff
@hattieinduni (As Hatti) as Poo

@Kitty_Jo as (as Kitty) as King

■■■■■ as favorite food because its hilarious.

■■■■ as favorite thing because midnfucks.

So I figured I’d start doing this until I got bored with it or forgot.

Chapter 1: Onett

Got off to a fairly solid part and laughed out loud at a few points meaning that I absolutely made the right choice to start. I’d forgotten how the Onett police department was “Number one for roads blocked”. Just one of the great things about this game that takes a fairly standard RPG trope (blocking off certain areas) and making them into funny/quirky things.

What was a little eerie is I forgot how… direct the paraody of america was and was weirded out by how “on the nose” the game would seem if it came out today. In fact, the shorthand of what has been played so far could be summarized as-

Local Child embarks on quest to save the world, starts in hometown by beating up local gang. The corrupt mayor jumps in to take credit and through shady politics gives the child a key to a restricted area to let him save the town. After he does this, the police get irritated and take him back to the station to beat him up. Child beats up 5 grown police officers, and is allowed to continue on his way as long as he doesn’t tell anyone it happened.

Gameplay wise, its actually a little easier than I remember, but this is like my 4-5th time through. I’ve already got Funk up to around level 12, made easier by Giant Ant’s dungeon being amazeballs for XP after you beat him. Thinking about going back and grinding out another level or two before Twoson, because oh my god, the slog between Twoson and Happy Valley is the worst, particularly if I eat the shrooms >.-

My main point being right now, I’m hoping that mentality holds up, because I fully intend on getting Hatti her sword, which very well could be the end of this playthrough because oh my god, that thing makes BNK3R look like a benevolent lord.

Notable Quotes- (Paraphrased)

“Now FunkJ, eat this ■■■■■ and scoot up to bed. Pokey, you don’t like ■■■■■ do you? T.O.O. B.A.D…” - Funk’s Mom (god that’s not going to get old)

“You kids should be sitting at home playing nintendo, not interfering with police business!” - Random Cop

“What? Do you think those roads are going to block themselves?” - Onett Police Chief

“I won’t have to take any responsibility, will I??” (player selects no) “You’re a smart kid.” - Onett Mayor

“Say ‘fuzzy pickle’!” - Photographer

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My mom kicks ass

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So it occurs to me that I might need to provide some background info on this 25 year old game if I keep going off on it. I suppose I should also note that there will be heavy spoilers in this post (duh).

To that end I’ll try to give some main sparknotes here covering three things- Main Plot, Main Cast, and Game Notes.

Plot- The main character (Ness, aged somewhere between 11-14) is awakened in the night by a metorite crash near his home. He goes with his “friend”, Pokey to investigate, but is blocked by police. Later in the night Pokey awakes him to say that his brother never left and they have to go get him. When they arrive, they retrieve his brother and a strange tiny bug named Buzz Buzz appears. Buzz Buzz states that he comes from the future where an evil being known as Giygas has corrupted the world and completely dominates it; he was sent back in time to help “the chosen one” start his quest to defeat Giygas. Ness takes everyone back to Pokey’s house where Pokey’s mom, thinking him to be a wasp, squishes him.

These events set off the main plot where Ness travels the world and meets companions and begins using the “Sound Stone” (an item that buzz buzz gives him in a totes self aware death speech) that will record the sounds of “Sanctuaries” that will bolster his power and let him defeat Giygas.

So far in the Story, Ness (FunkJ) has killed Giant Ant, the boss guarding the first Sanctuary in Onett and has had mysterious dreams about a young girl who lives in Twoson.

Main Cast-

Ness - Main protaganist. Doesn’t talk in classic SNES fashion except in “yes no” prompts. Ness is quintessential good guy, and a bit of a parody of “the all american boy”. Uses baseball bats as his primary weapon. His PSI abilities include heavy healing, defense, and pretty destructive AOE offense. He is also absolutely “main guy”, and he has a shitload of buffs that set him above the other characters; his stats are higher than everyone else’s, he does best melee in the game outside of maybe a fully loaded Poo, and he has the second best magic aoe in the game. Because of all this, he’s the only character that doesn’t have a special ability. He’s just ■■■■■■■ great at everything.

Paula - Main psychic user. Paula has a bit of a “damsel in distress” vibe, but she quickly goes into her own by becoming the team’s best magic damage dealer. She’s also the only true “psychic” on the team, despite almost everyone learning PSI abilities. In game, she frequently gets other main characters to act by contacting them psychically, usually leading into sequences where they join the team. Her special ability is to “Pray”; the game heavily implies Judeo-Christian, but since I’m Paula here, I pray to Cthulu. Pray gives a random buff and usually has diminishing returns. Paula gets access to the most powerful elemental attacks in the game, but is very “squishy” as a good black mage is want to be.

Jeff - Jeff is the brainiac, wiz-kid, smart guy on the team. Basically, he does machines. At night. Zing. While Jeff is the only member of the team to not gain access to any PSI attacks or abilities, he makes up for it in two ways. The first way is that he’s the only member of the team that uses a gun (score) and can repair machinery into useful items. These usually take the form of broken devices that provide repeatable buffs for the party, or by bottle rockets that he fires at the enemy. These can deal massive damage, but actively take up inventory space that could be used for healing items. The second way is that he can “spy” on the enemy, learning information about them and pick pocketing their items.

Poo - Poo is literally a ninja prince, with all the awesomeness that provides. Poo suffers a little bit of “good of everything”-itis, but not nearly as badly as Ness. He can play second healer fiddle to ness, and has generally good attack stats; he also has access to Starstorm, the game’s biggest AOE damage dealer. There’s a trade off though, as Poo has a very specific loadout that he can usually use; primarily they are the items of his people, passed down by royal blood. The most notable of these is the Sword of Kings, which is literally the only item he can equip that will increase his offense. It’s really good, but otherwise he’s better off fighting unarmed, which can leave him a little gimped while Ness is out making home runs all the time. Additionally it is notoriously hard to get, being a 1/128th drop one specific monster at one specific point in the game that disappears if you finish the boss shortly after them. Farming for it is… a bitch, but I refuse to not get it this time. His special ability is Mirror, which can randomly turn him into one of the enemies except fighting for you. It’s usefulness is… limited, usually to a few key fights, but overall he is a solid addition to the team.

Notable Mechanics-

The first thing to point out is that EB has an… interesting “ticker” based HP system. That means when you get hit or healed, the game uses a slot machine to show the life counter ticking down. You can abuse this in order to get a heal off on a character that would be otherwise dead, keeping them alive, if you’re quick enough. There’s also a stat called “Guts” that gives you a higher chance of staying at 1 HP when mortally wounded. It also increases the chance of crits, in this game called “SMAAAAAASH!!!” attacks. They are great.

The other thing to keep in mind is that the game is pretty free and loose about healing items. Items that recover PP (Psychic points, the things you spend to cast PSI attacks) are absurdly rare. You get a full tank every time you rest at a hotel or other sleeping establishment, but other times you are left on your own for… horrible extended amounts of time. This can end in a lot of swift doom pretty quickly. Even when you get one of these items, you’ll be loathe to use it outside of a boss fight unless in very dire straits, because aside from glitching… again, you don’t see them often.

That’s all the general stuff I can think of for now.

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Goddamn right

:face_with_monocle:

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Had a fairly productive gaming session today.

Shortly after beating the ■■■■ out of the Onett police, @FunkJunkie made his way south to Twoson after getting another psychic message from @Arsonist. He took some time to grind out another two levels before he did so. Upon arriving he found that Arse… had been kidnapped!

This fact was known by… basically everyone in town. He also found out that Paula’s parents ran a daycare and were the only ones (hilariously) who did not know she had been kidnapped. At a loss for leads, he headed into Burglin Park, where he was set upon by Everdred, local “lovable hoodum” who watches over the flea market that exists at the park. After a brief altercation, he said that he knew that Arsonist had been kidnapped by the Happy Happy Cult and taken to their town past the woods to the east of Twoson, Happy Happy Valley. Before setting out, Funk decided to invest in the local technology sector, giving $200 to Apple Kid and Orange Kid, local inventors.

This proved to be a good decision as Funk encountered a strange statue blocking his path into the Happy Happy Village, pictured below.

At a loss, with no where to go, Funk was delighted to hear that Apple kid had made a breakthrough on his work, and had invented a machine that would completely erase pencil shaped objects! The device was called… the Pencil Eraser.

pauses for effect

checks watch

continues

With the writing implement cleared, Funk continued on to Happy Happy Valley where he first made contact with the cultists that lived there. They were truly a strange people, wearing blue robes and worshiping one color above all others - blue.

Nope. No allegory there.

Funk eventually got the information that he needed. Arsonist was being kept in a shack behind the town! He set out to rescue her, only to find that she was locked up and he needed to get the key from the nefarious cult leader, Mr. Carpainter. This would be a problem, as the man was rumored to be a master of lightning based attacks. Luckily, Arsonist provided him with a Franklin badge, a magical item that would reflect all lightning attacks. As he left the shack, Funk was set upon by cultists lead by none other than… POKEY, his old childhood friend, apparently having turned to the cult as a source of inspiration.

With this, he was able to easily slip through the cultist compound and defeat Carpainter. The man, seemingly affable after his defeat, noted that he’d only started “Acting Strangely” after being given a strange, glowing statue.

Somewhat remorseful, Carpainter gladly gave over the key to Arsonist’s shack, and Arsonist joined the party. As they reentered town, Arsonist and Funk were set upon by Pokey who apologized for his behavior… and then shot them the bird and assured them that he would be a thorn in their side for some time.

But that’s not all! Funk and Arse bravely set into a nearby cave where they had to do battle with various bears, moles, and bats, all before fighting the second sanctuary guardian… MONDO MOLE!

The mole went down rather easily after Funk used his magic mind bullets to paralyze the beast, allowing the pair to waylay it into submission.

Where will the next leg of our journey take our heroes? Will it involve zombies? Zombie hookers? Strange smart boys from boarding schools? Only time will tell…

Gameplay Notes:

So for the sake of honesty, I’ve decided to keep track of my deaths here. I had one death today to go along with the one I had yesterday.

  1. Died to a group of a pogo punk, skate punk, and yes man jr. in onette due to a SMAAASH! from the skatepunk while underleveled.
  2. Died to a group of Mobile Sprouts and a Ramblin’ Evil Mushroom while under the influence of a shroom.

I mentioned those yesterday and the road between Twoson and Happy Happy being a slog… those things (along with some other tough enemies) are why. Shooms can “seed you with spores” which causes a mushroom to grow out of the affected character’s head. This has two effects.

  1. Causes the affected character to be confused, allowing them to attack themselves or other party members.

  2. Randomly switches the directions on your DPAD when walking in the main world.

On the plus side, the game gives you 50 bucks for every one you get taken off of you by a healer, on the bad side… yeah.

Past that, the road was as rough (or rougher) as I remember. Territorial Oaks would routinely burst into flames for loads of damage, and Aliens had access to “nighttime stuffiness beams” which would give a cold for poison, so bad times.

All of that is completely erased by how much I ■■■■■■■ love the Happy Happy Cult. It’s a weird mishmash of the WACO cult and the KKK, this group of blue worshipping weirdos in the middle of no where. Even better is the reaction after they snap out of it, with everyone uttering things like “Huh, I guess it was just a fad.” afterwards. The rest of the Yuks here largely came from the completely forgotten fact that Paula’s parents were literally the only ■■■■■■■ people in town who didn’t know she’d been kidnapped. This fits heavily with one of the overarching themes in the game which is… all the parents are pretty much garbage.

I was able to grind Paula/Arse up to around level 17 before leaving Mondo’s cave. She only had one death (thank god) but is still squishy as hell. She’s only 5 levels below Funk/Ness now, and has about 5 less PP, but her HP is only half his. Keeping her alive is the real challenge, as is balancing when and where to use her magic to keep everything on the level. I’m tempted to grind out more levels on her in the morning, but honestly there’s not a lot of combat between now and where we pick up @TemetNosce, which weill have its own challenges.

Notable Quotes-

“See ya, suckers!” - Pokey

“Look kid, you’re a real problem for my religion…” - Mr. Carpainter

“ARSE! ARSE? ARE YOU AROUND? PLEASE COME HOME! MOM MADE PIE!” - Arsonist/Paula’s Dad

“I love selling my pots here, but what I really want is that for sale sign over there…” - Vendor in Park

(after knocking on random door) “LOOK! MUNCH MUNCH I ALREADY TOLD YOU! MUNCH MUNCH I DON’T WANT TO JOIN YOUR CRAZY CULT! MUNCH MUNCH NOW GET OFF MY PORCH BEFORE I PELT YOU WITH PEANUTS” - Local Twoson Resident

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Expect a lot of small updates today, since I’m actually playing while drinking and near my computer.

Ground out a few levels in Mondo Mole’s cave to be safe-

FunkJ - 24
Arse - 19

@FunkJunkie is really pissing me off this morning. Two fights into the road between Happy Happy Valley and twoson and he needs to call his mom to get over being homesick. God god dammit dammit.

I can’t decide if I love the territorial oak as an enemy archetype or hate it. The idea behind it is that it’s a fairly tanky, beefy creature with ■■■■ attacks. When you kill it, it selfdestructs like a Voltorb. The difference is that it usually self destructs for mortal damage on your characters, but because of the ticker life system I’d mentioned above, you usually only take 30-40 damage before you get to the end battle screen.

The problem is you usually take that 30-40 no matter what your defense is, and there’s no real way to cut that time down to stop the ticker quicker other than “SPAM A SPAM A SPAM A”.

Edit: Finally got the cup of lifenoodles that I couldn’t pick up on the way in. Now I can finally quit dicking around and get back to twoson.

It’s what you get for loving Tom Brady, bitch

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I cant wait to bring Paula/Me to your mom so she can serve me some ■■■■■ and send me off to bed.

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Once you’ve had it you’ll understand why I’m homesick :upside_down_face:

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That joke is just the gift that keeps giving.

I’m unfortunately stuck in a horrible likes refractory cycle

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I also forgot to mention that because Arse’s parents run a daycare, all of the children Really look up to her.

“When I grow up, I wanna be just like Arse!”

A common lament, summer child.

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“I was going to ask you to be my partner, but I know you would refuse. I was going to give you a lot of money. Actually, I can’t keep the money anyway. Take it, it’s 10,000 dollars. Use the money any way you like. You cannot refuse my generosity. Just Accept it.” - Everdred

I ■■■■■■■ love this game.

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Now seems like the time for a longer, game plot update since I just got through one of the major cut scenes in the game.

FunkJ and Arse made their trek from Happy Happy Valley, full of stops for various items, Funk’s homesickness, and exploding trees. Still, they made it back to Twoson where Arse had to tell her dad to man the ■■■■ up and let her go out and save the world, as black magi are wont to do. After leaving Arse’s house, they were confronted by a street thug in Everdred’s employ, saying that the small time crime boss had a message for them. When they spoke with him, he rewarded FunkJ’s efford with a “Wad of Bills” (actual in game item) worth 10,00 dollars!

Being the smart, upright lad that he is, Funk knew that other people may need the money. Specifically, the band the Runaway Five had been stranded in Twoson for some time after racking up huge debt to the local theater owner. Having saved Arse, the band graciously gave him a backstage pass to let him into the show!

After the show, FunkJ paid off their debts, and the band immediately decided to leave town. As a show of gratitude, they offered to take Funk and Arse with them through the ghost ridden tunnels that had scared off many a bus driver heading to nearby Threed.

The pair accepted, and now begin to trudge through their new gloomy, zombie ridden setting.

Notable Quotes-

Bonus-

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“S… sir? Are you going out? The guest’s newspapers that were delivered to the hotel today… are different than normal. The paper is called the Zombie Herald… I’m scared, but let me tell you what is in it… 'DESTROY THE HUMANS! HOLD THE TOWN FOR OUR GLORY AND THE GLORY OF OUR MASTER!” - Threed Town Hotel Bellhop

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TPK # 3: @TemetNosce died at level 3 fighting a goat he had no business not healing on.

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@TemetNosce finally hit level seven, which means I’m ready to put him out into the wild.

My only problem is now I have to debate any time we hit an IQ Capsul.

If I give it to tem, then he can fix broken gadgets quicker while he sleeps.

If I give them to me, then I can cast more spells.

Fuuuuu-

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