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Characters / Jimmy and the Pulsating Mass

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"I am eight years old. I like video games, coloring, and Mom, Dad, Buck, and Uncle Lars."
Jimmy is a shy 8-year-old with the power of empathy. This allows him to take the form of the various monsters he fights and use their abilities in battle.

  • And I Must Scream: How he views his life outside of his dreams, confined to an uncomfortable bed with itchy blankets, constantly bothered by the glow and noise from his heart monitor, and too drugged and tired to move or speak to any of the people crying in his room.
  • Bears Are Bad News: One of his forms, which is also one of the best attackers in the game.
  • Death Seeker: Certain NPC conversations and Jimmy's own interest in the Phoenix myth suggest that part of him wants to die, if only so he'd finally be free of his hospital room.
  • "L" Is for "Dyslexia": It is heavily implied that Jimmy suffers from dyslexia. Anytime Jimmy is confronted with written words of any type, the words are always squirming around and appear as a jumbled mess from his point of view. This is further compounded by the credits sequence at the end of the game, where the credits gradually get more and more scrambled as they go on, becoming completely illegible by the end.
    • The scrabbled text may instead be due to the fact that it takes place in a dream.
  • Littlest Cancer Patient: He's very, very sick, and has been for a long time.
  • The Empath: Of a sort. After defeating certain enemies, Jimmy can embody them and take their skills for his own after a Dream Sequence from the foe's point of view.
  • Heroic Mime: In classic Earthbound tradition. His field ability voices his thoughts on certain areas, though he refuses to say anything for nightmarish zones.
  • Hidden Depths: Certain scenes during the Shinryu school sequences imply that Jimmy is really good with numbers, with math skills that are almost high-school level.
  • "The Reason You Suck" Speech: Delivered to himself, as well as by everyone possessed by the Pulsating Mass.
  • Troubling Unchildlike Behavior: Some of the nightmare sequences are packed full of things that no one Jimmy's age should be able to come up with. Many of them likely came from horror movies that Buck let him watch.
  • Voluntary Shapeshifting: Jimmy can transform into different monsters using his empathy.


"Buck listens to music that hurts my head. Buck works out and can pick me up with one hand."
Click to see young Buck 
Jimmy's older brother.

  • Big Brother Bully: Buck probably means well, but his meatheaded insistence on "getting stronger" is responsible for a lot of Jimmy's problems. It's implied that most of the nightmarish imagery in the game comes from horror movies that Buck let him watch, and his constant derision over Jimmy's physical weakness is the basis for his self-esteem problems.
  • Big Brother Instinct: One of Buck's few positive qualities is that he comes down like a ton of bricks on anyone who might hurt his little brother. He punched out a feral dog that threatened Jimmy when he was younger, and early in the game, a goon who taunts Jimmy is promptly smashed flat.
    • He also shoves Jimmy out of the way when Jonathan tries to kidnap him, sacrificing himself to the control of the Pulsating Mass instead.
  • Crutch Character: Downplayed. But he is significantly useful as a party member, due to being able to deal high damage, with a chance of hitting multiple times on a regular attack. His skill Insult, which reliably inflicts Startled (which is an immobilizing status effect) without costing MP, helps make him extremely useful if you know how to use it properly.
  • Demonic Possession: After the boss fight with Jonathon Bear. Buck is grabbed by Jonathon and dragged down into the depths. He isn't seen again until later, after he's been possessed by the Pulsating Mass.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: When Jonathan tries to grab Jimmy in a moment of final desperation, Buck shoves him out of the way, and is kidnapped by the Pulsating Mass in his stead.
  • Momma's Boy: Despite his grumpy no-nonsense personality, Buck has a hard time hiding the soft spot he has for Helga. Even when he's possessed by the Pulsating Mass later in the game, part of him still shows concern for her wellbeing.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: While he is cranky and cantankerous, he's also extremely protective of his family and loves them very much.
  • Littlest Cancer Patient: It's implied a few times. Buck claims that something as weak as the Pulsating Mass could never control him when he shakes off its influence. It's ambiguous if this is just Jimmy believing Buck wouldn't lose if he ever fought the Pulsating Mass, or if Buck actually did have cancer and beat it.
  • Punch a Wall: He deals with his grief over Jimmy's illness by punching holes in the hospital walls until his hands bleed. In one secret dungeon he can also be seen beating his fists against the walls, presumably out of anger at his own inability to help his brother.
    Buck: What do you want me to do? What can I do?
  • Rage Breaking Point: Literally the description for one of his special moves, which gives him an attack boost at the cost of no longer being able to control his actions.
  • Sink-or-Swim Mentor: At one point the player is treated to a flashback in which Buck discovers Jimmy trying to use his exercise equipment. While pleased by his desire to become stronger, Buck does nothing to help Jimmy, who is shown clearly struggling to even lift a weightless barbell.

"Helga is my mom's name. She is pretty and has a pretty singing voice."
Jimmy's Mom.

  • Beware the Nice Ones: She's gentle, upbeat and endlessly forgiving...and packs one of the highest natural ATK stats of any character in the game. In Everchip, an arena champion faces her one-on-one when she's in a bad mood and nearly gets his head smashed in.
  • Mood-Swinger: Normally very cheerful, but prone to bouts of melancholia so severe that she lies catatonic on the floor until someone shakes her out of it. It's represented in her stage, Rainbow Park, which goes through regular abrupt shifts between sunshine and gloomy rain.
  • Sickeningly Sweethearts: With Andrew.
  • Surprise Pregnancy: Rainbow Park reveals that she never meant to have Buck. It might explain some of his angst.
  • Team Mom: Literally.
  • White Mage: Her skills center around recovering the party's HP and curing different ailments.

"Andrew is my dad's name. Sometimes he says hard words I don't get."
Jimmy's dad.

  • Black Mage: His skills revolve around using offensive magic and buffs to make him hit harder, at the expense of burning more MP.
  • Glass Cannon: High damage potential, puny HP and defense. Becomes even more of a cannon with the Encyclopedia Set, which reduces his magic power but makes his attack stat skyrocket.
  • No Social Skills: Occasionally blunt to the point of cruelty. When Jimmy's sickness worsened, he actually suggested to Helga they just have another child. We don't see her reaction, but she didn't take it well.
  • Sesquipedalian Loquaciousness: His vocabulary is very robust. Occasionally throws in Techno Babble.
  • Sickeningly Sweethearts: With Helga.
  • The Stoic: Completely unshakeable. He doesn't even crack when he's told Jimmy's illness is all but incurable.
  • The Smart Guy: He's a professor of paleontology and the most likely of the party members to come up with plans.
  • Throw the Book at Them: His unique weapons are all books and academic papers.

"Uncle Lars lives with us cause Grandma died. He plays video games with me and owns lots of toys."
Jimmy's uncle and Helga's brother.

  • Extreme Doormat: A major personality trait of his, this is weaponized to make him the Tank of the paty.
  • Fluffy Tamer: He befriends the dragoness he has a temporary romantic relationship with.
  • Heroic Self-Deprecation: He's keenly aware of what a loser he is, and a lot of his dialogue revolves around it.
  • Interspecies Romance: He ends up in a romance with a dragoness in Everchip.
  • Living Emotional Crutch: For Helga. He's her only surviving family, and often pulls her out of her darker moods.
  • Manchild: An obese, unemployed lump who sponges off his elderly parents and then moves on to his sister and brother-in-law. He does get along very well with Jimmy, who doesn't mind his immaturity.
  • Nice Guy: He's a freeloader, but doesn't have a mean bone in his body.
  • No Social Skills: He has trouble communicating with people besides Helga and Jimmy.
  • Occidental Otaku: He's probably one of the most wholesome and loveable examples of these.
  • Stone Wall: Easy to hurt, very hard to kill. In combat, his skills revolve around drawing aggro and setting up counter-attacks while increasing his survivability.
  • Wholesome Cross Dresser: He gets dressed up as a princess in Everchip, and outright tells Jimmy and Helga he likes it because it feels comfortable.

    Jonathon Bear 
"Jonathon Bear lives in a forest with his animal friends. Jonathon Bear is filled with stuffing and can talk."
A teddy bear Jimmy owns based off a popular children's show character.

  • Alas, Poor Villain: Jonathonland gives us a glimpse into his perspective. He was an obsolete toy model gathering dust on a store shelf until Jimmy stole him. He loved to be played with, but eventually Jimmy's guilt led him to lock Jonathon away again in the dark. Jimmy fell ill afterwards, and Jonathon presumably never sees him again. The last we see of him in-game is his silent, tattered body in Jonathonland, and Helga expresses sympathy before taking him with her.
    • In the postgame, Jonathon returns, explaining that Helga stitched him back together. He has since become The Atoner, admitting that Jimmy probably hates him and apologizing for his previous actions. He knows that what he did before was atrocious and uncalled for, no matter how he felt. At that point, the player may add him back into the party, if they so choose.
  • Beary Friendly: He's a cheerful little lad who's a small bear. Subverted, making this Bears Are Bad News as he turns evil, then double subverted as he makes a Heel Face turn.
  • Body Horror: Once he's fully taken over by the Pulsating Mass, he becomes a gargantuan, rotting amalgamate of fabric and flesh stuffed full of maggots. Even he seems horrified at what he's become just before he perishes.
  • Killer Teddy Bear: He can hold his own with the rest of Jimmy's party. Gets much worse when he pulls his Face–Heel Turn.
  • Kill It with Fire: When it becomes clear just how malicious he is, Jimmy tries to shove him into the furnace with the rest of the abandoned toys. It doesn't work.
  • Knight of Cerebus: He's responsible for one of the game's darkest segments, and his character makes it clear just how badly Jimmy's guilt and self-esteem issues are effecting him.
  • Shout-Out: His final appearance in Jonathonland - standing rosy-cheeked against a solid black background - is strongly reminiscent of The Fallen Child.
  • Yandere: He's furious with Jimmy for locking him away, and joined with the Pulsating Mass in an attempt to get revenge. By the time his boss fight comes around, all he wants to do is keep Jimmy all to himself in the rotting world of his television show.


    Punch Tanaka 
"Punch is really cool and owns a bunch of motorcycles. I've never ridden one. Maybe he'll let me!"
The leader of the Petty Thugs.

  • 100% Adoration Rating: Is worshiped by the Petty Thugs for his unbridled coolness and sense of fair play.
  • Driven to Suicide: Leaps to his death after his second loss to the party, at Jonathon's urging. He survives.
  • Easy Amnesia: He suffers memory loss after his suicide attempt, and wanders through Secret Meridian trying to find himself again.
  • Fighter, Mage, Thief: The Thief class, once he joins. He has the only dedicated stealing skill of the other characters, and sacrifices defense for high agility and decisive blows.
  • Greaser Delinquents: Rockabilly, specifically.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: Twice. He doesn't come back after the second one. At least until the postgame, that is.
  • Interface Spoiler: You can find a weapon for him in a dungeon that's only accessible after his final sacrifice, hinting at the postgame.
  • The Nicknamer: Insists on calling Jimmy and all his family variations of "Kid" - Mama Kid, Papa Kid, etc.
  • Simple, yet Awesome: His unique "Called Shot" skill, a low-cost ability that doubles his damage next turn. When Jimmy is able to transform into Punch, he can synergize this skill with his other forms' attacks for some devastating combos.
  • Third-Person Person: In his first appearance he says:
    Let me tell you something about Punch Tanaka. Punch Tanaka rides on the free and wild dreams of youth. Punch Tanaka is the tiger caged in the heart of man.
    Punch Tanaka wears his shades at all times. Even in the shower. I've got a hard lesson to teach you, kid: I'm cooler, tougher, and badder than you'll ever be.
  • Warrior Poet: His journal entries and haiku are scattered around Secret Meridian. Some are actually quite nice.

"Hitomi is like a girl in a show Uncle Lars watches with me. She's different cause her hair is purple."
A Magical Girl who joins the party when they infiltrate Shinryu Academy.

  • Guest-Star Party Member: Her time spent with the party during the main story is very brief, hardly lasting a single dungeon.
  • Jack-of-All-Stats: She comes equipped with two high-damage ATK and MAT based skills, and her stats are well-rounded overall.
  • Lightning Bruiser: Her AGI stat is quite high. She also has the only skill in the game that reduces cooldowns, allowing her to pour on damage even faster.
  • Manic Pixie Dream Girl: Leans so far into it that she's practically a parody.
  • Right for the Wrong Reasons: She's aware that there's a problem with the school, but she's mainly focused on the sentai-esque villains posing as students and doesn't recognize the threat of the Pulsating Mass.
  • Secret Identity: She makes a hilariously token attempt at keeping hers up when she's first found out. Lars sees right through it.
  • Wish Fulfillment: She's basically Lars' ideal woman. Since the game takes place in Jimmy's dream, it's likely he came up with her character just for his uncle's sake. They fall in love, get married, and climb a ladder to the moon in the space of one dungeon.

Villainous Forces


The Petty Thugs

    The Petty Thugs in General 
A group of punks and thugs lead by Punch Tanaka.
  • Anime Hair: They have spiky green hair, which is stated to be stylized by a glasses wearing member.
  • Chaotic Stupid: The low-level goons arguably count as this, they aren't actively malicious, just completely lacking in common sense and don't care about what others think about them at all.
  • Dumb Muscle: Some of them count as this, but not all.
  • Poke the Poodle: Everything they do is this. Most of the time they just threaten people and the worst they will do is shake people around.
  • True Companions: They genuinely care for one another, even if they don't show it in the most dignified way.
    Johnny Knives 
The first of the trio of him, Dee Dee, and Big Enormous.
    Dee Dee 
The second of the trio of her, Johnny Knives, and Big Enormous.
    Big Enormous 
The third of the trio of him, Johnny Knives, and Dee Dee.
  • Affably Evil: He's the poster child for this trope.
  • Gentle Giant: He has one of the largest battle sprites in the game, indicating he is very tall.
  • Nice Guy: He's one of the kindest characters in the game.

Other Villains

    The Queen Bee 
"I hate you, Jimmy. I hate every drop of rotten blood inside your carcass. I hate every mole and mark creeping up your back."
The once friendly queen of the Bees of Homeflower. She was afflicted by the Pulsating Mass and turned into something far more sinister...

  • Body Horror: Just compare her appearance prior to being mutated by the Mass to after.
  • Flunky Boss: Starts the fight with two pupae that she quickly turns into drones, worker bees, buddy bees or royal guards.
  • Invincible Minor Mook: The pupae she periodically spawns are invincible until she turns them into bees.
  • Knight of Cerebus: There are a few creepy things here and there, but the fight with the Queen Bee is the first sign that something far, far darker is going on in the game.
  • You Have Out Lived Your Usefulness: Perfectly willing to replace her weaker minions with stronger ones, regardless of how damaged they may be.

    The Pulsating Mass 
The titular villain of the game. An all-consuming Eldritch Abomination seeking to swallow up the entire world.

  • Beware of Vicious Dog: Its initial form is a dog. Its later implied that this appearance is based off of a bad experience Jimmy had with a feral dog.
  • The Blank: As far as we know, it never forms a face of its own, instead opting to speak through others.
  • Body Horror: Nearly anything it possesses winds up horribly mutilated, and enemies associated with it are screaming, hemorrhaging piles of flesh.
  • Child Hater: Out of the main cast, it focuses on tormenting Jimmy and Buck the most.
  • The Corruption: It has the innate power to infect anything with a part of itself, from a Buddy Bee to the entire Central Hub.
  • Eldritch Abomination: Gee, y'think?
  • Evil Chancellor: Takes this form on the third continent and manipulates the king to get Jimmy killed, until it's forced to step in itself.
  • Generic Doomsday Villain: Its origin and motivation aren't really explained beyond "I hate Jimmy," at least not until you figure out what it really represents.
  • Mind Manipulation: It has the ability to brainwash people.
  • My Brain Is Big: Its chancellor form sports one.
  • The Power of Hate: The only thing that drives it is its seemingly inexplicable hatred of Jimmy.
  • Shout-Out: Its final form is a clear reference to the Devil's Machine.
    • As a grotesque, fleshy abomination able to possess other beings, it is similar to the Thing. Its initial form is even that of a dog.
  • Telepathy: The Pulsating Mass eventually demonstrates the ability to communicate without needing a mouth.
  • The Topic of Cancer: It is heavily implied, if not outright stated, to be an imaginary manifestation of Jimmy's cancer.

Island NPCS

Bonus Bosses

Residing primarily in the dark and twisted areas of Jimmy's dreamscape colloquially referred to as 'Nightmare Zones', they offer great rewards...if you can beat them. Their affiliation with the primary villains of the game is varied and often ambiguous.

An enormous snake that, while it appears to have no affiliation with the Pulsating Mass, is very much still nightmarish in its own right.

The boss of the first Nightmare Zone, generally referred to as "Slither's Dungeon" for convenience.

  • Bonus Boss: The first of many.
  • Eye Scream: Judging by its very brief appearance in the overworld and its battle sprite, it appears to either be bleeding from its eyes, or have no eyes whatsoever.
  • Giant Space Flea from Nowhere: Even compared to the other optional bosses, Slither has no real relevancy to the plot or its themes. The best one could make of it is that Jimmy is afraid of snakes.
  • Snakes Are Sinister: Naturally, being an enormous hostile snake.
  • Wake-Up Call Boss: If you do them before going to Legato and getting Helga and Jonathan, they can be this, especially compared to all of the other bosses up until that point in the Homeflower.


A once normal crow that was corrupted into a hideous monster by The Pulsating Mass.

The boss of the second Nightmare Zone (listed as ??? on the world map).

  • Body Horror: Oooh boy...
  • Bonus Boss: Can be fought after clearing Everchip, though you can enter its nest as early as after Legato Castle.
  • The Corruption: It appears as a normal crow at the start of the game, but becomes a mutated mass toward the end of the first continent.
  • Early-Bird Cameo: Can be seen in its normal form at the top of the mountain of the first continent.
  • Flunky Boss: The first phase of his boss battle requires you to defeat the parasites on it before it crashes the party into the ground.
  • Giant Flyer: It's absolutely gigantic.

"It's already unusual for a dreamer to slip into my realm, but to make it this far? You're dreaming deep, indeed."
The Emperor of Dreams, who rules over Ebeezil's Domain. Within lies his castle, supposedly the nexus of all dreams. According to a non-hostile Sleepwalker, all who enter are trapped and doomed to wander forever; dreaming, yet unsleeping. If he falls asleep, he'll cause the end of the world.

  • An Ice Person: One of his attacks is summoning a blizzard.
  • Bonus Boss: Accessible by breaking through cracked ice.
  • Forced Sleep: He can inflict this on party members, and can even pull everyone (including himself) into the dream realm to make them all fall asleep.
  • Never Sleep Again: He can put party members to sleep—and you'd better wake them up fast, or he'll deliver a One-Hit Kill.
  • Schmuck Bait: When Ebeezil pulls everyone into the dream realm, he falls asleep too, so it seems like it'd be a safe time to heal, right? Wrong, as he manages to be even more threatening while asleep—he can inflict huge damage to the party, give them status effects, or attack their MP.
  • Sinister Scythe: His main weapon of choice.

An abandoned toy Jimmy once played with, he's the general of the abandoned toy army based in Turnbuckle's Mansion. Furious at his abandonment, he seeks revenge on Jimmy.
  • Authority Equals Ass Kicking: The strongest of the abandoned toy army, and their leader
  • Bonus Boss: He's not mandatory to defeat, but either defeating him or his toy army will let you progress.
  • Face Death with Dignity: Accepts his defeat gratefully and is at least happy that Jimmy went through his haunted house.
  • Graceful Loser: See Face Death With Dignity.
  • Yandere: Much like Jonathan, he's angry about being abandoned by Jimmy.

    Imaginary Numbers 
Found at the end of the Asymmetrical Cavern, the Imaginary Numbers are an abstract entity that attacks Jimmy and his party for no discernible reason.

    Mr. Cat 

  • Ax-Crazy: He violently murders Cordelia Mouse for no apparent reason.
  • Bonus Boss: Found in the cave under the Unbreakable Bridge.
  • Cats Are Mean: He kills Coredlia Mouse and is implied to have done worse.
  • Casting a Shadow: He and the rest of the monsters in his dungeon are shadowy creatures.
  • Early-Bird Cameo: He's initially found staying at the Mouse family inn, and is implied to have been a prisoner in Legato Castle.
  • In the Hood: He wears a hood that makes him look untrustworthy.
  • Slasher Smile: Sports one in his battle sprite.

    The Mad Queen 
The former queen of Legato, she was a kind and just ruler before going mad, and had to be banished by the Legato Knights. She now resides in her castle on the other side of a mirror, skinning anyone who dares to enter.
  • Ax-Crazy: She's gone so mad that her people sealed her away.
  • Bait-and-Switch: What appears to be her sitting behind a pair of curtains is actually her husband, the result of her "handiwork." She is quickly revealed to be a giant, whose arm emerges from the two pits in the room she fights you in.
  • Bald Woman: Her head is a skull.
  • Cloud Cuckoolander: The Mad Queen is an extremely dark take on this trope, as she believes that the skin on other people is dangerous because it's dirty, and the only way to make them safe is to straight up remove it.
  • Dem Bones: She has an overall skeletal appearance, with her skull-like face and literally white skin.
  • Evil Counterpart: She is implied to be one to Helga herself, given her constant smile, similar to Helga's battle sprite and how Helga is said to resemble her. Her portrait in the treasure room after defeating her resembles Helga as well, and she is also the boss of Helga's wing of the Heart Dungeon.
  • Flaying Alive: She attempts this on anyone she sees.
  • Giant Woman: She is actually a gigantic skeletal monstrosity, and not the figure behind the curtains.
  • God Save Us from the Queen!: She's the old queen of Legato Castle who went insane without warning, who was sealed away by her own people.
  • Obliviously Evil: She's dangerous, sure, but only because she has completely lost her mind.
  • Skull for a Head: Her face looks like, or perhaps outright is a skull.
  • Yandere: She acts like this towards Jimmy, wanting to keep him forever.
    Golden King 
A huge golden statue surrounded by a massive treasure trove. The Golden King and it's trove are available for the taking at the end of the Halls of Greed... If you can beat him, of course.

A robotic version of the Jimmy's grandmother, and the AI of a ship. She initially works for the Pulsating Mass to help capture Jimmy, but upon learning what its intentions for him actually are, ejects her family out to set up the second third of the game.

  • Bonus Boss: Can be found on the crashed version of the ship.
  • Mechanically Unusual Fighter: A counter at the side of the screen counts down every time you land a hit on her. Reaching 0 does damage and changes her phase. Her ridiculously high defense otherwise prevents fighting her like a normal boss.
  • Yandere: Refuses to let her family leave during their initial capture, and later fights Jimmy to keep him from ending their "visit" during her boss encounter.

    The Whisper Weaver 
A ginormous spider hidden in the depths of the abandoned mines of The Giant Garden.
  • Ambiguous Gender: The Whisper Weaver has effeminate looking hands, wears lipstick, and rules over a horde of smaller spider monsters with similar features to it, but nothing about its gender is stated in the game, much less if it even has a concept of gender.
  • Darkness = Death: It is implied to be the personification of Jimmy's fear of the dark. If not that then arachnids, or both at the same time.
  • King Mook: It is a massive version of the spiders encountered in it's cavern.
  • Spiders Are Scary: It is a giant, horrifying spider.
    Mr. Grouse 

  • Aesop Amnesia: He even asks Jimmy if he expected him to learn anything from his defeat.
  • Bonus Boss: Can be accessed after depositing $100,000 in the bank.
  • Jerkass: Easily represents the worst of capitalism, to the point of wanting to kill Jimmy to keep him silent.
  • Non-Lethal K.O.: Unlike the other bosses, he's not killed. Along with the usual after-boss goods, he gives Jimmy Life Insurance, removing the halved money penalty from dying.
  • Recurring Extra: Shows up at multiple banks.


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