What is Unearthed?

unearthed1Succinctly put, Unearthed is a game project being developed using hacking software and the EarthBound Super Nintendo rom. Despite being constructed within the framework of an existing game, it will have an original narrative and will feature a new cast, game world and game-play mechanics. The main aim of Unearthed is to produce an entertaining narrative experience within the fabric of a retro video game.

Unearthed is centered around a fairly simple plot – one that draws influences from Labyrinth, Cave Story, Fraggle Rock and many other sources. Through a series of unlikely events, Mitchell (our protagonist) is thrust into an underground world in search of his younger brother Chase. There he encounters strange creatures and exotic locations, and gets caught up in the trials and tribulations of this newly discovered realm.

Why are you making this?

unearthed2Short answer: Because I have a story to tell.

Long answer: Because I love video games – especially the chunky, 16 bit ones I grew up with – and I want to tell new and engaging stories using this antiquated (but not unappreciated) medium.

I guess a lot of this project is driven by nostalgia. Many of the narrative points and game-play mechanics in Unearthed are derived from existing media or at least inspired by it. When I work on Unearthed, I often feel like I am writing a love letter to an era of games that has long passed, and I hope the end result is both familiar and refreshing to those who play it.

When will it be done?

unearthed4Unearthed has been a labour of love for me over the past few years, and I have been working on it whenever I have a spare moment. I’m not entirely sure when it will be done, but you can see the progress so far by checking out old blog posts, the most recent of which are displayed below. As of the writing of this page (April 2014) all the map design for Unearthed has been completed and all the sprites have been finished and integrated into the game. I am currently implementing items, abilities, and enemies, while Radiostorm works on the game’s dialogue.

I am hoping to have a technical demo out before the end of the summer, and an alpha/beta build of the game complete by year’s end. No guarantees though! A lot of the game’s development is dependent on my schedule and on contributions by complete strangers. Neither of those things are particularly reliable.

Want to help out with the project? Email me directly or check out the Starmen.net forum thread.

Recent Updates


Unearthed Update: Cows and More

The cow you see above is a cow of destiny. It is the first NPC placed in Glensborough, and the first step towards a playable version of Unearthed. It…

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Unearthed Update: Twitch Stream Online

You may have caught this update already on YouTube or Twitter, but the Twitch stream from back in June is now online! It was a great time, and I…

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Unearthed Twitch Stream: July 23 @ 9:00pm

After shying away from it for months, I’m finally putting together a Twitch stream for Unearthed! Tune into my channel on Thursday June 23 at…

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Unearthed Update: Battle Backgrounds Implemented

Just a quick update for all of you peoples who have been asking me about Unearthed. All of the battle backgrounds have be integrated into Unearthed,…

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Unearthed Update: New Battle Backgrounds

I have completed another milestone in my never-ending game design quest. Behold! Mother 3 battle backgrounds integrated in the EarthBound…

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Unearthed Update: Music (Almost) Fully Implemented

I have an exciting update for you all! Over the last year or so I've been collecting musical submissions from the community over at Starmen.net, and…

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Unearthed Update: Presents and More

I had a bit of free time over the holidays, so I decided to get caught up on some Unearthed work. Working diligently, I managed to place every…

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Unearthed Updates: Shops Complete

This update is short, sweet. and animated: All the shops and vendors in the game are now working! This process was a tad more cumbersome than I…

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Unearthed Update: Herbs & Spices

Sorry for the long Unearthed hiatus everyone! I've been tied up at work over the last few weeks, and I also had to perform a difficult move across…

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Unearthed Update: Sporeways & Text

Now that the enemies in Unearthed are all placed, I'm free to putter around a bit and work on different areas of the game! To lead things off, I've…

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