Monday, January 16, 2017

End of the Line

As the old idiom goes, I've put all my eggs in a single basket- and unfortunately that basket just had too many complications to work out for me.

Though I can't go into specifics, the underlying reason I have to end this is because of money, or a lack thereof.
I had originally thought I could finish this off volunteer work from others and minimal spending on my part. I now realize that, if you want to get something done as ambitious as this, you can't afford to not have some kind of larger budget to shell out, nor can people continue to work on something out of obligation when getting paid by a real job is a far greater concern.

Retrospectively, I'm relieved I never thought to try crowdfunding or asking for donations, because I'll fully admit I would've probably been unable to deliver on the same promises, even with a budget to speak of. Not to mention any hypothetical money I'd have received wouldn't have contributed anything in the long run, considering what's happened now.
I'm not about to be another Inafune.

Many of the people who'd been working on the project have since moved on, and I'm glad to see their involvement with this hasn't been too much of a hinderance to any of them.
I can only hope any anticipation readers of these reports have felt wasn't too hard on them either.

With this, I apologize for the silence about the project for almost a year and a half now- I should've not only been updating these posts during my long silence, but I should have also come to terms with completely ending this sooner, so as to not prolong anyone's hopes.

Thank you all for any amount of support and criticism you've given me over the course of this, and I promise I'll use this experience to learn to better myself with responsibilities and my work online in general.

Sunday, August 23, 2015


There appears to have been some confusion regarding some details on the engine and the project itself, so this post's more for answering some recent questions than an update on the progress of development (which, in all honesty remains mostly stagnant on the account that Geobox itself has not been distributed for use).

Affiliation with Geobox:
Geobox was not created to be used in Beneath the Surface. In fact, Geobox's original development predates the conceptualization stage of BTS by over a year.
Our project just so happens to use Geobox as an engine, but the connection should not be stretched beyond that.
Geobox is not "the Beneath the Surface engine", it's its own thing, used in other projects and games aside from this.

Story Details:
Any details regarding plot information are not concrete or final, as the script goes through reworks frequently. As such, locations, plot elements and even characters are not necessarily represented in the way they may appear in-game.

Demos/Tech Demos?
At the current point in time an actual demo release seems like a distant possibility, an unforunate contrast to how hopeful it seemed at multiple points thoughout the development history. That was of course, before we ended up switching engines.
The closest thing you're getting to a tech demo is the old single room-area with the GM engine, and given permission, a possible release of the Geobox tech demo, which has been showcased in small video incriments on the Cave Story Tribute Site Forums.
(I can't stress this enough, the Geobox tech demo has nothing at all to do with BTS)

Updating on this blog's become increasingly difficult, considering every member of the development team has their own personal priorities, in most cases, education or a job, and as a result, we end up with less of anything substantial to show here.

I apologize for how uneventful this all is.

Sunday, March 15, 2015


For those that have been following progress for a while now it's easy to assume this has been stagnating for a while and if I'm going to be as honest as possible, it really has.

January presented difficulties in the form of a complete harddrive failure on my end, and some technitians inability to recover anything from it, so unfortunately that sets us back quite a bit for some sprites that were being made, though I'm not about to lose sleep over it- it wasn't too much and recreating them should be too much of a problem.

February marked the start of some new artwork available, mainly in the form of some portraits some in progress and a couple finished, showcased here by a close look at General Nakamura himself, looking as gruff as ever. Artwork is by the talented Pomfy as always, and we'll be looking forward to having more work submitted in the future.

The wiki for Beta/Fulffball's GeoBox engine has recently been launched for anyone that has the intention of using it for their own purposes, and the past few weeks Hate9 and Beta have been working on porting the standard definition sprites to the engine, both for those who prefer it and to avoid potential copyright infringment. A thread for anyone with questions regarding it has been posted here. The next few weeks should present some open time to work on helping out Hate and Beta in conjunction with reworking some sprites.
Until then, thank you for everything.
Next update might take a while.
Maybe even longer than this one did.

Thursday, December 25, 2014


December 20th, 2014 marked an momentous day for any fans of Cave Story out there-
The 10th anniversary of the game being released!
While this blog update coming  5 days late, (By the way, Merry Christmas, and sorry for the delay) I have still have the usual updates to list off and explain here, so I may as well play all my cards here.
First off, with the time it's taking to adjust to the new engine, I can absolutely guarentee that there will be no fully playable demo able to be released during this year at all. My unfortunate worries that this engine would significantly delay the release of the demo turned out to be true after all.
Coupled with some technical difficulties involving computer region and missing files on my end, I've recently had to acquire another version of the development tools altogether, so needless to say things are a bit rough when it comes to adjusting.
Though, being that it's the season of giving right now, what better way to *mildy interest audiences* by showcasing some new info on the game ready to be published in this update.

First off, a preview to how the surface world is structured.
Gradually progressing furthur downwards, with multiple branching paths, the surface world is anything but the island in temrs of structure and progression. While much of the time only a limited amount of enterable paths open up as the player goes furthur into the story, there are far fewer limitations on where the player can go to as dictated by the plot.

Expect to see something along the lines of this. (Credit: Geobox staff affiliate)

In the case of the story, the aformentioned villain replacing the role of General Jiro will will not be fully revealed until the furthur notice, but as of now, his role, backstory, motivations, characterization and design are all fleshed out. In a way, he acts as General Jiro's equivalent of Doctor Date for Quote, with a relation and motive driven by hatred and resentment for past transgressions.

Again, since updates from this point onwards are all based on signifcant levels of progress rather than a monthly interval system, I can't say when the next update will be, let alone even estimate a release date for the demo by this point. 

Wednesday, December 17, 2014


This is not a legitimate update for the blog, just a quick notification.

Due to the fact that this week and the preceeding 2 weeks were almost completely consumed by preparing for and taking miterm exams, very little if any progress was able to be made in the developmental and familiarization process with the new GeoBox engine.
As a result, updates will be able to resume by at least Saturday, the 20th of December.

In addition, full on updates to the blog will no longer be based on monthly intervals, but rather on the frequency of noteworthy progression. This is to ensure we don't end up with any sort of updates where we go over miscellaneous technical information that, in all honesty, no one ever read or cared about anyway.

Thank you for your patience.

Monday, October 20, 2014


By this point in time, I'm really glad I waited until this day to post the update, otherwise the news would've probably come across as far more...grim.
Up until 3 days ago, the situation was looking rather bleak for the entire development process.

Our programmer, having used GameMaker to create the engine we've been sing up until that time, made the decision to ultimately quit using the software and language altogether, due to the limiting nature of GML and the software alike. We had an engine, but with no competent programmer willing to take on the job, there really wasn't much point in trying to continue what something none of us had much of an idea on how to use.

But strange things can happen. Convenient, perfect strange things that can change the direction of a situation.
Within the past week, our team's been given permission to use an upcoming new Cave Story-esque engine, which you can see a preview of here:
The good news to this:
We have a much more open-ended and efficient engine than when the project was using GML.
The bad news?
The engine's not yet competed yet. Nearing completion, but not quite there yet. As a result, it may take some time before we can use the engine, and even then, adapting to its scripting language may take some more time. Luckily this has no effect on non-programming related parts of the project, so art, sprites, and music are still continuing normally.

The script, in turn will also be getting some major core changes, but for an audience that has been told little of the actual plot, this shouldn't concern any of you too much. A key thing that has been changed, however is the role of General Jiro, who will no longer be a villain in the main story, rather a supporting character in a sense.

Going deeper into specifics would be over-complicating things b this point, so I'll end this post here.
It's been a while since any update, and it's been good finally having a reason to post something positive.