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: Enemies Complete

As promised, this Unearthed update is a rather substantial one. All of the enemies in the game are now complete! I've put together a little sampler…

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Unearthed Update: The Long Game

Merry Christmas everyone! Now that the holidays are pretty much over, I thought I'd check in and let you know what is going on with Unearthed. You…

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Unearthed Update: Patch Notes v3.3

Well, that turned into a three week hiatus. Whoops! I got sick after I got back from my trip, and temporarily turned into a useless couch lump. Now…

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Two Week Blog Hiatus

Hey everyone, I just wanted to let you all know that I'm taking a two-week break from game production and blogging. I'm aiming to get back to things…

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Unearthed Update: Patch Notes v3.2

Just a couple of quick updates this week, as I didn't have a ton of time to work on the game. Master Belch is displeased with my progress. Patch…

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Unearthed Update: Patch Notes v3.1

This week was all about fixing some persistent bugs, including a menu  that has been bugging me for a looooong time. Behold, the finished battle…

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Unearthed Update: Patch Notes v3.0

And we're back to making actual changes to the actual game now. Wooo! There still is a bit of paperwork to do, but I'm just going to work on it in…

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Unearthed Update: Paperwork Is My Enemy II

 More boring paperwork this week! As a continuation of last week's organizational shenanigans, this week I made a spreadsheet dedicated to breaking…

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Unearthed Update: Paperwork Is My Enemy

  Not a huge amount to report in Unearthed progress this week. I spent most of the week putting together a rather elaborate spreadsheet that…

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Unearthed Update: Patch Notes v2.7

Do you guys like animated gifs? I sure as heck like animated gifs. Here's one outline the final four abilities I implemented in Unearthed. Hopefully…

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    • That’s really odd. I’ll do a quick site diagnostic and will see if it’s something on my side. We just put the website up a couple weeks ago, and we’re still working out the kinks.

  1. Yeah, same here. Just like Woot200, the only thing I see is a white box with a red X in the upper-left corner. Just like you would see if a webpage tried to load an unexisting picture, you know what I mean?

    Anyways, great work!

  2. I can’t wait for this game. I loved HB, and I’m sure this will be even better. Unearthed currently sits at the top of my ‘Most Anticipated Games’ list!


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