MOTHER 3 Fan Translation v1.2 & Translation Tools Released

4 years ago by Mato

The newest version of the MOTHER 3 fan translation patch is out!

It’s been almost five years since the last update – during that time, Jeffman and I would fix little things here and there, but we never got around to releasing a new patch. Until today! Here’s what’s new in general:

  • A number of minor, rare bugs have been fixed
  • A few rare typos and other text issues have been fixed
  • Some bugs present in the original Japanese game have been fixed
  • Script text encoding has been undone
  • Duster’s sound battle sounds play properly – the original game had some problems with this
  • And probably some lesser stuff that’s been forgotten over time

If you’ve played a previous version of the translation patch, this version won’t seem very different at all, but it felt like it was time to release what we had rather than sit on our fixes and improvements forever.

Save files from version 1.0 and 1.1 WILL work with this latest patch, so no worries there!


We’ve also released a set of tools and files for fans who want to translate MOTHER 3 into their own language!

The tools have their limitations and weren’t designed to be user friendly, so be sure to read all the documentation first before playing around with them. Part of the reason we’re releasing the tools now is so we won’t have to provide constant support forever and ever – providing support has become burdensome as we’ve all moved on with our lives.

Because different languages have different needs, it’s also important to note that these tools aren’t a magic bullet – they’ll take your translation project 95% of the way, but the remainder will be up to you to solve. Still, if you need some basic help or have some basic questions, you can post them here.


Before releasing this latest patch and these tools, I went through the game and tested it live on stream for everyone to watch. While doing this, I also shared a lot of trivia, memories about the translation project, translation notes, and more.

I even had guests on – Chewy, who helped with the translation came over and we chatted about all sorts of interesting translator stuff, her experiences working with Shigesato Itoi, etc. Jeffman Skyped in one day and talked about how the project helped him get ahead in life… and then he proceeded to fix a glitch in the original Japanese game, live on the stream! Marcus Lindblom, the head localizer for EarthBound, hung around in the chat a few times, which was an incredible honor. Jeff Benson, the EarthBound Saga guy and the guy behind the in-progress EarthBound fandom documentary came by and chatted with us too.

In all, it was a productive, fun, and memorable experience. It was my first time ever streaming, but if you’re interested in MOTHER 3 you can see all the archived videos on my Twitch account here or on YouTube here:


There aren’t any active plans for a version 1.3 patch right now, but I suppose we might make one if any major issues arise in 1.2. For now, it’s just nice to be updating on this blog again after so long, and nice to finally get these files out to everyone after five or so years!

Offer to Nintendo

5 years ago by Mato

When we released the MOTHER 3 fan translation patch in 2008, it was because it was clear that Nintendo had no interest in releasing an official translation of the game. Still, there’s always the hope that the game might be re-released someday on some new platform, at which time us fans will clamor for an official translation yet again.

I realize that localizing a game this size can cost a lot, so if it’ll help in even the slightest, I’ll gladly offer to let Nintendo use my text translation files for any use at all, completely for free. I’ll even edit the files to fit whatever new standards are necessary (content, formatting, memory size, etc.), completely for free. I’ll even retranslate everything from scratch if need be. Just whatever it takes to get an official release out.

It might seem unlikely for a legitimate company to use a fan translation or work with fan translators, but it has happened before – Ys: The Oath in Felghana is one recent example. It’s more common among visual novel games at the moment, but I believe this sort of thing will only become more and more common over time. Only when the works in question are up to a certain standard of quality, of course.

In any case, if it matters, I’m actually a professional translator with many years of experience. Here are some references:

For further reference into how much work was put into the unofficial MOTHER 3 localization, I’ve started posting detailed translation notes on my Legends of Localization site here.

The project’s development blog (which you’re at right now) also goes into great length about the amount of work and detail put into the game’s localization.

I definitely realize this is a silly-sounding offer and all, but I figure it’s better to make the offer and seem silly than possibly miss an opportunity entirely.

In the end, if localizing MOTHER 3 should ever come up in a Nintendo business meeting or whatever and someone brings up budget concerns or it costing too much, my hope is that someone will at least mention this offer too, even if it isn’t accepted.

MOTHER 3 English Translation 1.1 Released!

9 years ago by Mato

After lots of work trying to get a lot of the old gang back together and after lots of testing and bug reports courtesy of helpful fans, version 1.1 of the English MOTHER 3 fan translation is out! You can get it here.

The new patch fixes all known typos and most (though not all) of the bugs encountered in version 1.0. Save files from the 1.0 translation ARE compatible with the new patch, so no worries there. Save states from version 1.0 should probably work with version 1.1 most of the time, but there’s always a very slight possibility that one might go crazy. Regular saves are the way to go.

Read the rest of this entry »

MOTHER 3 Blog Works Again

9 years ago by Mato

For those of you who’ve tried to look at the old posts on the Mother 3 translation blog, fear not, I fixed the problems so now all the old entries work again. If you’re really adventurous, try reading every blog post from the earliest archive 😛

Mother 1+2 translation is going slowly, I’ve been at 90% on the first draft script for a couple weeks. http://mother12.net for updates, though the updates are a lot less regular than the M3 updates used to be.

And, as always, I must pimp out EarthBound Central, there’s lots of new stuff every day, including Mother 3 polls, neat info, tricks, videos, etc.

MOTHER 3 Translation Dev. Glitches

9 years ago by Mato

Back when the patch was still being worked on, people asked me to someday make a video of a bunch of the weird things that happened during the hacking. A few weeks ago I made a short video showing a couple of them. I couldn’t fit them all in due to YouTube’s video length limit, but these are some of the more amusing ones:

There are also many glitch pics and early development pics inside this big ol’ image archive that I put up a few months ago.

Work on the MOTHER 1+2 translation is slowly coming along. I didn’t realize how much of a drain EarthBound Central would be on my time, but I want to get the MOTHER 1 part done so I can work on some other interesting projects. You can follow the MOTHER 1+2 progress here if you’re interested.

In other news, the MOTHER 3 Handbooks have shipped! If you didn’t preorder, you can still order a copy anytime, so don’t worry. Also, for more up-to-date news about MOTHER 3 stuff and just the entire series in general, EarthBound Central is the place to go 😀

EarthBound Central and Current Status

9 years ago by Mato

It’s been a good while since the last update here, and it sounds like most people have already played through the game and long finished. If you’ve played through it, have a look here, it’s interesting to see what others think about the game. The results of that poll are actually really surprising to me too. I thought nothing would ever move EarthBound from its pedestal 😯

While I’m sort of on the subject, the past month I’ve been hard at work on a personal EarthBound blog called EarthBound Central. If you like the EarthBound/MOTHER games, you’ll probably love EB Central. I’m still putting some finishing touches on things there, but it’s been up for a few weeks now and it’s been a ton of fun. So check it out sometime!

Getting back to MOTHER 3, a few things to report. One thing that would be crazy not to mention is that the Brownie Brown president said he would love for overseas fans to play MOTHER 3 if Nintendo ever asked them to make a DS version. See here. Of course, that doesn’t really mean anything, it’s entirely up to Itoi and Nintendo whether or not to do any more with the MOTHER games. But it doesn’t hurt to pray. If, by some crazy chance, a DS version is made, I’d gladly let them have my text translation for free if it meant the game would be released in English too.

Read the rest of this entry »

Misc. News & MOTHER 1+2 Translation

9 years ago by Mato

Just a batch of misc. news today.

1. First, and probably the coolest of all, Jeffman is asking for help testing his MOTHER 3 Sprite Editor. It’s very cool, so help him test it here!

2. I still get e-mails and PMs about it. The patch downloads have slowed down of course, though I believe we passed 100,000 local downloads long ago. I don’t have an exact # but it doesn’t matter too much.

3. Translations into other languages are still progressing well, and teams are starting to finish all the non-main script text. Soon they will taste the terror of the main script!

4. An updated English patch probably won’t be out for at least a few months. We’ve fixed a few bugs and typo/bug reports have mostly stopped, so it’s looking like it’s time to get working on them.

5. There are currently no concrete plans to translate the MOTHER 2 part of MOTHER 1+2 (that’s Jeffman’s territory), but I did start messing with the MOTHER 1 part of it a few weeks ago. It’s been much, much easier to hack than the third game, whew. Most of the hacking is done, and now I’m retranslating the Japanese script from scratch. You can read all the details and see pics and videos here. This blog is for MOTHER 3, so any MOTHER 1+2 updates will be over at my personal one.

That’s all for now!

Various News

9 years ago by Mato

A few things:

First, the dance contest thing is over, and the results are in. If you entered and didn’t win a prize, don’t fret, because you won’t leave empty-handed. See the video for details.

Second, one of my hopes was that someday, somewhere, someone would play the MOTHER 3 translation on the side of a building with a big projector or something. It actually didn’t take long to happen, as video of the translation wound up being played on buildings during an art show, because the MOTHER series had been a big influence on the artist’s style. See more here! My other hope was that someone would play the translation inside Nintendo the day the patch was released, though I doubt that happened 😛

Third, I’ve been slowly working on more of the translation notes, but I’m suddenly very tired of the game, so the notes will be slow-going for a while. I think I’ve played through it too much now, it suddenly hit me one day while working on some notes. The next thing I add will probably be about character names, location names, and other names.

Fourth, the translations into other languages have already begun and are already showing good progress. Here are some pics.


  • Italian translation

  • German translation

For a list of other translations, see the front page, near the bottom right.

MOTHER 3 Sprites

9 years ago by Mato

A few months ago, Jeff wrote a program to dump all of MOTHER 3’s sprites from the ROM. There are so many sprites in the game that they had to be stored in an unfriendly way, you see.

Anyway, you can now download them here:

Be careful, though! Because of how computer file systems work, you’ll need about 100+ MB of free space on your hard drive for all these tiny .png files, even though they technically total 15 or 20 MB.

Anyway, have fun exploring all the sprites, and keep an eye out on all the weird, unused/hidden stuff too!

MOTHER 3 Unused Content – Preview

9 years ago by Mato

The main translation notes will take precedence, but I put together a preview of just a few things to expect in the “Unused Content” portion of the site. You can see the preview below, but beware that there probably are spoilers!

http://mother3.fobby.net/unused/