A Game Over occurs when all of the characters in the party are knocked unconscious. In all games in the series, the image displayed during a Game Over is the party's leader under a bluish spotlight against a black background.
When the game is lost, all money in Ninten's possession is divided in half; if Ninten has only a single dollar, he will not lose anything, however. Any money left in the ATM is unaffected. The player will then be transported to the spot in which they last saved the game with only the lead character not unconscious, and their PP at 0. If the player has not saved the game yet, they will be transported back to Ninten's room instead, in the same spot where the game begins. Additionally, their PSI points become depleted, and any Bread Crumbs that the player had will have their coordinates reset to be the spot where the player saved. When Magicant disappears, the coordinates for a Game Over are set to the top of Mt. Itoi, at the XX Stone.
In EarthBound, losing the game is very similar to in Mother; similarly to the previous game, certain spots in the game will reset the spot where the player is revived, such as entering Magicant or entering the Cave of the Past. A glitch involving parts of the game where there are no enemies on the overworld can occur if the player is defeated during a scripted battle, such as a Your Sanctuary guardian.
The song used for the Game Over screen in EarthBound is based on Flying Man.
In Mother 3
Due to the chapter-based nature of Mother 3, losing the game works somewhat differently. Rather than taking the player back to the previous saved point, if the player passes certain parts of a map or certain scenes in the current chapter, the game will instead bring them to the nearest Hot spring rather than saved point. On the Game Over screen, each lead party member has a separate animation when they are revived. Characters who are never supposed to lead the party against enemies (such as Kumatora) use a placeholder sprite if this occurs via hacking. Game Overs additionally restore both HP and PP, and revive all characters, unlike the previous two.
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