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Ness is a young boy from Onett and the main protagonist of EarthBound. Starting off as a normal young boy, Ness ends up on a journey to save the world from Giygas's alien army. During his adventure, Ness develops the ability to use PSI, a type of psychic power. Ness is often pictured with a baseball bat, which is the first weapon acquired in EarthBound.



In EarthBound, Ness was a young boy, residing in the town of Onett. However, one day, a meteor crashed into the mountains of Onett, and Ness went to take a look. After being bothered by his obnoxious neighbor, Pokey Minch, who had lost his younger brother, Picky Minch, Ness headed out to the mountains with Pokey and Ness's pet dog, King. However, when he got there, he noticed the meteor acting strangely.

They find a small bug-like alien named Buzz-Buzz coming out of the meteor, who claims he is from the future. He tells Ness that he, two other boys and one girl, will rise up, and defeat the evil warlord, Giygas. Ness and the group defeat one of Giygas's minions, the Starman Junior, and they head to Pokey and Picky's house to drop them off to their parents. However, Pokey's Mom mistakes Buzz-Buzz for a fly, and swats Buzz-Buzz, killing him. With his last minutes, he gives Ness the Sound Stone and tells him to go to the eight "Your Sanctuary" locations, spread across Eagleland. Ness then starts his journey.

Ness is the most powerful character from among the main playable characters, as he is found at the beginning of the story, and thus is at higher levels than the rest of the party, and because he receives a special level-up in Magicant. By the end of the game, there is an abysmal difference between Ness's max HP and te rest's, for example. Unlike Paula or Poo, Ness doesn't rely much on PSI to attack. The only offensive attack he's got is his signature move PSI Rockin'.

The rest is mainly to assist in battles, such as Lifeup and PK Flash. However, this is not a problem, as he has a good Offense stat as well. His main weapons are baseball bats. Another battle-related issue only found in Ness is the Homesickness status, which will prevent him to attack regularly and instead thinking about his family, thus losing a turn. The only way to cure the Homesickness stat is by calling Ness's mom through a telephone.

Super Smash Bros. series[edit]

Super Smash Bros.[edit]

Ness also made a surprise appearance in the Nintendo crossover fighting game, Super Smash Bros.. He was included in the game to represent the EarthBound franchise. Ness was an unlockable player, unlocked by beating 1-Player Mode on Normal Difficulty, with three lives, without continuing, then defeating Ness himself in a battle. Ness is able to use PK Fire, PK Thunder and PSI Magnet even though these are used by Paula in EarthBound.

Super Smash Bros. Melee[edit]

Ness returns in Super Smash Bros. Melee, this time, entering as a default character, not an unlockable. Ness has now, ironically, been tossed down near to the bottom of the Tier list, despite the fact he had the highest tier in the original game. He has now gained PK Flash, the only one of Ness's Super Smash Bros. special moves that he actually learns in EarthBound.

Mr. Saturn is now included as an item, and Onett and Fourside appear as stages. Ness is also fought in Adventure Mode, in Stage 9: Onett, where the player must battle three Ness's on Onett. 

Super Smash Bros. Brawl[edit]

Ness returns in Super Smash Bros. Brawl, this time reprising his role as an unlockable character. He can be unlocked by playing 5 "Brawls", reflected attacks 10 times, or having him join the player's group in The Subspace Emissary.

Ness's popularity seems to have increased due to his appearances in the Super Smash Bros. series. He is voiced by Makiko Omoto, who also voices Kirby in several Kirby and Super Smash Bros. games. His emblem representation is the Earth, EarthBound's logo.

At one point during Super Smash Bros. Melee's development, Ness was supposed to be replaced by Lucas, the star of Mother 3 (Or Earthbound 64, which was the name of the game at the time). However, the game was mass-delayed, and transferred onto the Game Boy Advance, with the final release of the game in 2006. Because of this, Ness was kept in.

Mario franchise[edit]

Ness has been linked to the Mario franchise through some various small cameos involving other Nintendo characters such as the unlockable amiibo patterns in Yoshi's Woolly World and its port.

Yoshi's Woolly World / Poochy & Yoshi's Woolly World[edit]

A Yoshi design based after Ness can be unlocked in Yoshi's Woolly World and Poochy & Yoshi's Woolly World when players scan a Ness amiibo in.

Super Mario Maker[edit]

Ness makes a cameo appearance in Super Mario Maker as an unlockable amiibo costume for Costume Mario. Mario's 8-bit sprite takes the appearance of Ness, and his sound effects change to ones from EarthBound: when acquired, the PSI healing sound effect plays. Clearing the stage plays the boss victory theme. When falling into a pit, the sound effect of Ness's party being defeated from that game plays, and pressing +Control Pad up on the controller makes the jingle for learning a new technique play. The costume is unlocked either randomly upon completion of 100 Mario Challenge on Normal difficulty or higher, or by scanning a Ness amiibo.


Names in other languages[edit]

Language Name Meaning
Japanese ネス

Chinese 奈斯

Korean 네스

Russian Несс

Spanish Ness


  • Ness, as well as all of his partners, made a cameo in Mother 3 in a movie in New Pork City.
  • Ness suffers from homesickness, whereas his predecessor Ninten has Asthma.
  • In Mother 2: Gyiyg no Gyakushū, the Japanese version of EarthBound, one of the default names for Ness is Mario.
  • Ness's name originates from either the NES or SNES, being an anagram of the latter, or another way to spell the former. Ninten, the protagonist of EarthBound Beginnings, is named after Nintendo.
  • In Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS/Wii U and Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, whenever using his up and down smash attacks, the "grab" sound effect from Super Smash Bros. Brawl can be heard once he grabs his yo-yo. This has only applied to Ness since then.