Michael Iantorno PhD Candidate, Game Designer, and Writer

Bustin’ Things Up

One of the great things about writing the full game outline for Unearthed (roughly 20-25% complete) is that it gives me a chance to consolidate all the little ideas that me and RS game up with for the project. One of my favourite ones we came up with is an ability that Mitchell possesses called Bust Up. Bust Up lets the player attack a mechanical opponent for minimal damage, with the added boon of retrieving a useful item as part of the assault. You’re basically smashing the robot until something valuable falls off of it!

I’ve always been a big fan of steal type abilities in RPGs and I wanted to include something similiar in Unearthed. However, Mitchell is not at all a roguish type of protagonist! Having him rob people blind doesn’t fit with his M.O and just didn’t feel right. An ability such as Bust Up made more sense to me, as a “smash and grab” approach plays off Mitchell’s simple-mindedness and straight forward thinking.

It also seemd to fit rather nicely into the theming of the game. Mitchell spends a lot of time fighting robots and other constructs, so it is very reasonable to assume that he’d develop special combat strategies to deal with them. It doesn’t seem especially out of place that he’d smack around a robot a bit to gain a useful item, as robot-smashing is basically what he does.

Now you may ask: what kind of items will Mitchell get through the use of Bust Up? It just so happens that Mitchell has a mechanial ally (ISAAC) that can greatly benefit from having a few extra spare parts lying around. Secondary only to shops, busting things up will be a major source of weapons and armour for ISAAC throughout the game. Many of these items will be powerful or rare, giving the player added incentive to use the ability against opponents

I hope you enjoyed this little game mechanic preview. I always like sharing elements of the game with all you folks out there in internet land. I’m going to get back to that damnable game outline now, and hopefully I’ll make some good progress with it this week.


This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

  • Wow, this is a really cool idea! I’m sure this game is going to be incredible! Btw, good luck on that game outline, it sounds like a real pain.

  • I am really excited about this move. I remember playing Mother 3 and being really excited about Duster’s thief skills, then being disappointed with the fact that they almost never worked, and when they did, the benefit was minimal. It seems like most RPGs have a handful of support skills that only serve to make the game seem more varied and to delay your Bash/Shoot/Fight/ATK by one turn. Skills that provide benefits outside of battle are awesome though. With Bust Up and herbalism, I see some indicators that Unearthed is going to be more than just level grinding between plot points. Keep up the good work, I can’t wait to see the end result.

By Michael
Michael Iantorno PhD Candidate, Game Designer, and Writer