Earthbound came to me during a very special time of my life. I was 15, thriving as a creator of music and fiction, and was surrounded by friends and family who loved and supported all that I did.
I first saw the game in a video rental store with its strangely alluring packaging. I decided that the visual style of the game was delightfully cartoony, in addition to including its own strategy guide, so I rented the game. What followed was a weekend where, hour after hour, fifteen year old neglected his school work in order to play a wonderful and charming game that featured a journey to realms unknown in any other RPG. With music that was both catchy and strange, familiar and yet unique, Earthbound truly was a game that held my attention from beginning to end. I was so enthralled by the game that I was fortunate to get it as a birthday gift only months later, and spent many hours bonding with my younger brother as I progressed through my very own copy of the game. The time I invested in Earthbound was so compelling that I gladly spent the time to acquire the Sword of Kings AND level everyone up to 99 just on my first time playing through the game.
Grind in the caves where you fight the Diamond Dog, and you'll hit 99 in just a matter of hours. I still remember that after all this time.
In the years since, my copy of Earthbound came with me as I moved to California, and remained by my side as I returned to living in Canada. The strategy guide has been lost to the mists of time, a fact that I lament with every passing day. I was supremely elated however, to find that both Earthbound and the (in)famous Earthbound Beginnings were released on the eShop. Without having to resort to emulation, I'm able to support the Earthbound/ Mother series and hopefully also encourage Nintendo to support the series more actively.
So for me, Earthbound means memories of peace and creativity, bonding with my brother who is one of my best friends, and embarking a delightful journey where I, as a member of the audience, am allowed to grow with the main character of the story. For those reasons, Earthbound lives on in my heart as more than just a great game, but a symbol of all that has come before and brought me to where I am in my life right now. And upon reflecting on that, it becomes apparent that my future is going to turn out just fine.
Many thanks to Earthbound, Itoi-san and Nintendo for that.