Friday, December 3, 2010

Earthbound Scrapbook Entry #16: Smiles and Tears (GPP16)

It's been a long, hard journey, but I think we're almost done.

Sometimes I've felt like I've spent years trying to get things just right; trying to make things perfect. Maybe I have.

That's just my nature, I guess. With my father and mother separated by so many miles, I pour myself into everything I do. I work to exhaustion to prove myself... and to forget. After awhile, I didn't need to forget anymore and I had nothing left to prove. Now I work hard for myself.

At times I've cursed this adventure, the long hours, the setbacks and the heartbreaks. But now that it's almost done, I have a feeling that I'll be looking back fondly at all the time I spent on it.

This path is leading me to my destiny.

A Bionic Kraken crushes Jeff's metal body with its massive tail and sends thousands of volts of electricity though his crumpled chassis. It would have killed him in his human form. As a robot, he's able to pull himself back up and return fire.

The Kraken fades away.

Our metal feet clang against the stone floor. It's a bit like aluminum cans being crushed with every step. For some reason, I love this sound.

In the distance, I can see the entrance to Giygas's lair.

*   *   *

My attacks aren't causing any damage. There's nothing left to do but pray that I'll make it. I knew it was going to come down to this, yet I feel so desperate I feel right now.

This is amazing.

I can't grasp the true form of Giygas's attack. The valiant prince of Dalaam takes mortal damage.

Paula falls to her knees and appeals to anyone who will heed her call. Thousands of years in the future, the Runaway Five are rehearsing for a joint concert with superstar singer Venus.

The keyboardist stops first, then the drummer. Soon the stage is soundless. None of the musicians are very religious, but Lucky feels the need to pray for the safety of his friends.

In the past, Giygas's defenses become unstable.

Paula calls out again and again, praying for the aid of her family, of Dr. Andonuts, of anyone who will listen. She even calls out to the good people of Saturn Valley.

Though prayer is not a part of their culture, the Mr. Saturn begin to feel anxious about their friends and hope with all their might that everything will be all right in the end.

I feel anxious too as one of Paula's prayers goes unanswered, absorbed into the darkness.

Another fatal blow. The kind-hearted scientist boy can go no further. He slumps to the ground like a broken toy.

Paula prays once more. It reaches a person she's never met before, but feels like she knows very well.

_ _ i _ s _ t _ _ I_ _ i prays for the well being of the children.

Giygas took 167 HP damage!

Paula prays from the bottom of her heart.

S _ i _ sat _ I _ oi was moved to prayer once more!

Giygas took 557 HP damage!

"NESS! NESS! IT HURTS! I FEEL H  A  P  P  Y!" screams the beast.

Another desperate attack crushes Ness's chest. I watch as is hit points roll down to zero.

There's no one left to help and nothing left to do. Paula prays a final time!

...and S _ igesat _ I_oi keeps praying too!

Giygas took 1995 HP damage!

With a final, unfathomable attack from Giygas, Paula can stand no longer. As her HP drains, I tap the action button madly. I've made it this far; I won't stop here!

Shigesato Itoi prayed and prayed!

Giygas took 19,973 HP damage!

That when I know it's over. Pokey appears to taunt me one more time, then vanishes.

I feel drained as I watch the souls of Ness and his friends - of my children - returning through time to be with their families once more.

A sudden knock at my door startles me.

"Is the final stage of the game program satisfactory, Mr. Itoi?" asks a man in a white button-up shirt. His red tie dangles dangerously close to my fish tank.

"It could be better," I reply. I dash my spent cigarette in the nearby ashtray. A tobacco ember floats up and quickly disappears.

The man frowns, thinking that the game will be delayed for yet another few months. I smile and put my hand on his shoulder.

"But it's wonderful as it is. Please put it on a sample cartridge tomorrow and have it sent to headquarters."

He smiles and nods. He shuts the door behind him as he leaves.

I don't need to test the ending again; I know it's already as good as it can be without another total rewrite of the program. I shut off the Super Famicom on my desk just as Ness reawakens in Saturn Valley.

It's ready to be submitted for a final quality check, manufactured, then shipped out to all the Nintendo gamers, whose good will and encouragement has kept me going, even when it looked like this game wasn't ever going to be finished. It's about two years late, but the fans have waited patiently. I'm so happy I can finally give them what they wanted for so long.

I shut down my computer and grab my jacket. I take one final look at my office before turning off the light. After waving goodbye to a few other employees who are working even later than I did, I head out towards the still-bustling streets of Japan.

Goodbye, MOTHER 2. You were my curse. You were my sanctuary.

I'll miss you.

No comments:

Post a Comment