Below (video game)
Below is an action-adventure roguelike game in development by Capybara Games. It was initially be published by Microsoft Studios for Microsoft Windows and Xbox One but later was published by the developer Capybara Games. The game was announced during Microsoft's E3 2013 press event, and was indefinitely delayed in mid-2016 when Capybara pivoted to polish the game instead of rushing it out.
Below is an action-adventure game viewed from a top-down perspective. The player-character is a "tiny warrior exploring the depths of a remote island". The game is about exploration, though that goal is contingent upon the character's survival. Microsoft's Phil Spencer described the game at E3 2013 as a "creative take on roguelike gameplay" in a "mysterious world". The environments are randomly generated.
Below was announced at Microsoft's E3 2013 event. The project had been in development for years. The company had discussed ideas for the game, particularly the difficulty element with Capybara's Kris Piotrowski, before games like Demon's Souls tested the genre.
Capybara compared the game to "roguelikes of yore", as a "roguelike-like" with design choices like permanent death and high difficulty. The game punishes recklessness and is designed for fair, but rigorous combat. Capybara president and co-founder Nathan Vella called the game the company's largest by number of features, artwork, and development time and difficulty. He described the game as a "super video game-y video game" for its aesthetics, soundtrack, and game mechanics. While the game is mostly single-player, the multiplayer aspects are important in some of the world's areas. In March 2014, Vella said that the game's development progress was hard to gauge, but its foundation was laid. Its first playable demo was scheduled for the April PAX East 2014.
It was expected to release simultaneously on Microsoft Windows and Xbox One, but would only be exclusive to the console for a limited time. The project was indefinitely delayed in mid-2016 when Capybara turned to finish its OK K.O.! Let's Be Heroes for Cartoon Network - of which they have now finished.
Singer-songwriter Jim Guthrie composed the score. His compositional work on a previous Capybara's release, Superbrothers: Sword & Sworcery EP, led to their Below collaboration. Capybara has described Sword & Sworcery as a game built upon Guthrie's music, and Below as Guthrie's music built upon Capybara's game.
- Corriea, Alexa Ray (June 10, 2013). "Below by Capybara Games coming to Xbox One". Polygon. Vox Media. Retrieved June 10, 2013.
- McWhertor, Michael (June 11, 2013). "Below from Capy Games is an ode to roguelikes, with 'brutal but fair' combat". Polygon. Vox Media. Archived from the original on June 15, 2013. Retrieved June 15, 2013.
- Farokhmanesh, Megan (March 19, 2014). "Super Time Force shooting for summer release, Below 'hopefully' playable before E3". Polygon. Vox Media. Archived from the original on March 20, 2014. Retrieved March 19, 2014.
- Tach, Dave (April 3, 2014). "Capy's Below will be playable at PAX East 2014". Polygon. Vox Media. Archived from the original on April 4, 2014. Retrieved April 3, 2014.
- McWhertor, Michael (August 8, 2013). "Capy's Xbox One roguelike Below will come to other platforms". Polygon. Vox Media. Retrieved August 25, 2013.
- Frank, Allegra (March 9, 2017). "Capy Games returns for project with Cartoon Network (update)". Polygon. Archived from the original on March 10, 2017. Retrieved March 9, 2017.
- Additional sources
- McWhertor, Michael (April 12, 2014). "Watch Below from Capy Games in dark, atmospheric, dungeon-crawling action". Polygon. Vox Media. Archived from the original on April 13, 2014. Retrieved April 12, 2014.