This is kind of a ramble and it didn't actually start life with the intent that it'd be a blog post, so beware.
Serious spoilers for Mother 3 below the jump. Don't take that lightly; Mother 3 is probably my favorite game of all time, and it's something that everyone (everyone) should play through, unspoiled, at least once. You haven't done that, go do that. This is the part where I'd tell you to give Nintendo some money because they make good shit even if they are dicks, but the form their Mother 3 dickery takes is a staunch refusal to take your money, so whatever, fuck it; yarr, matey. But I wanted to talk about how Mother 3 uses grief as a theme, and how it reinforces narrative with mechanics and vice versa in service of that theme.