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|Example of a localization change
|The hospital exterior in Mother 2
|The hospital exterior in EarthBound, in which the red cross is removed
It's not uncommon for changes to be made in media during localization. These changes are often made to make it appeal to western audiences. Mother 2 has recieved numerous changes during its transition to EarthBound, whether for censorship purposes, or due to copyright issues reguarding certain content.
List of differences
- In the opening scene in Mother 2, the text reads "Mother 2: Gyiyg strikes back!". Due to Gyiyg being renamed Giygas and the game's predecessor lacking a localization (at the time), in EarthBound it was changed to "EarthBound: The war against Giygas!".
- Porky was renamed "Pokey" due to a translation error.
- Most religious references such as "God" or "Devil" were removed, and similarly most instances of the word "dead" were removed as well.
- When Porky and Picky were being punished for being out late at night, Aloysius Minch is beating them in Mother 2. To tone down on violence, in EarthBound he instead yells at them and the sound was replaced with the yelling sound effect used for speech-based attacks during battles.
- All the hospitals had their red crosses removed. The reason is because the red cross emblem is a copyrighted symbol owned by the Red Cross Foundation, thus the change was made to avoid potential lawsuits from the origination due to their very strict policies reguarding usage of the emblem.
- Certain red trucks originally had the word "Come" on it with a line going underneath the text. In EarthBound it was changed to a jumping stick figure, the change was likely done because the original looked similar to the Coca-Cola logo.
- The Tonzra Brothers were renamed the Runaway Five, and Lucky and Nice, who were originally wearing black suits, had their suits changed to red and green respectively. This change was done to remove their resemblance to the to The Blues Brothers.
- All references to alcohol and beer were changed to coffee. Similarly certain NPCs that were originally drinking beer were reworded to say they are drinking coffee.
- Shops with the sign "Drug" in department stores was changed to "Shop" to avoid drug reference.
- Octopus Statues were replaced with Pencil Statues and the Octopus Eraser Machine was changed into a Pencil Eraser Machine. The meaning of an octopus statue was a play on a popular Japanese saying when you feel so stuck and think it's impossible to continue, "it's as if an octopus is blocking the path". As most western players wouldn't understand the joke, it was replaced with a new joke about "pencil erasers".
- The "HH" on the Insane Cultists' hats were removed and a whitr ball-like object was added to the tip of their hats. This was done to remove their resemblance to the Ku Klux Klan.
- Threek was changed to Threed, the reason is currently unknown though it's said it could be because players might misinterpret the name as "Three K", and the meaning as the KKK.
- The Sky Walker was renamed Sky Runner.
- The Topollo Theater was renamed to Topolla Theater, possibly because the original name sounded similar to "Apollo Theater".
- Monotoly was renamed Monotoli. The reason is unknown, although it could be due to the original name being similar to Monopoly.
- The bar in Fourside was changed into a cafe to remove alcohol references.
- The Eraser Statue was originally a limbless doll in Mother 2. The joke is the type of doll is called a "kokeshi" and the Japanese word for eraser is "keshi", so the item to erase it called the "kokeshi keshi". In EarthBound to keep the joke similar the statue was changed into an eraser and item to erase it is called the "Eraser Eraser".
- In Mother 2 Ness enters Magicant completely naked instead of dressed in his pajamas like in the localization. In this context nudity is a representation of purity in Japanese culture, whereas it is associated with perversion in the West, requiring it to be changed during localization.