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Latest Release
9.0.0b - February 1, 2013

Synopsis
In Starless Umbra, you play as Andoru in a quest to attempt to return home to save your sister after bandits raid your village. This simple task complicates itself quickly, as a strange phenomenon leaves you not only away from your village, but with little direction in a completely new continent.

As you travel, you'll learn the people around you aren't what they seem, and ties begin forming between yourself and others as your past is revealed. Unfortunately, no one can answer the simple question: "how do I get back home to save my sister?"

http://www.starlessumbra.com/
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Latest Blog

2020 is over!

2020 is over. To briefly reflect on the past year, it has been stressful in ways I'm sure don't need belaboring. On the bright side, I feel like I've endured a year of both personal and professional growth. I've also cherished the positive life moments a bit more. Most notably, I'm a dad now. ("This COVID thing will totally blow over by the time our daughter arrives." --me, completely wrong circa last February)

Anyway, hello 2021! Time for game updates.

I went almost eight years without a release. Yesterday I finally broke that streak. I'm not very good at sticking to dates I set for myself; however, I did push myself to publish something before 2021, no matter what that something was. In good old "Release Something" tradition, I did it! There's now a new download of the latest something I could share with you guys at the literal 11th hour of 2020.

What happened? Why did it take so long? I talked about this a couple months back, but the short story is that Heroes of Umbra became a thing and I don't like leaving projects unfinished, even if they take roughly 15 times longer to complete than planned.

It's not a lot, but mostly everything is there in some shape or form. It's not a true vertical slice--most notably the demo doesn't have any minigames (yet!!)--but it should give you a bit of an unrefined taste of what I'd like to try to accomplish. If you have an opportunity to give it a try, please let me know your thoughts, what you'd improve, if you see this as something you could get into, and so on.

As an aside I did realize right before I published that none of the plaintext data is obfuscated or hidden in any way. Ooops. Feel free to mod the demo to taste. Crank the profanity to 11 or give your characters millions of HP.

To indulge you with the history of this project, I remember the first maps I made dabbling with RPG Maker 2000. I used the circle tool to draw a Mickey Mouse-shaped island with the default RTP assets in all their saturated glory. My mom asked me if I was into a girl who liked Disney. I wasn't. I had just gotten done playing Kingdom Hearts though.

I then went on to create a series of dungeon mazes and a village. With no direction and a vague "find adventure" plot I submitted a demo to GamingW.net. My ego was shredded. But I kept it up and learned to appreciate the criticism and continued to be inspired by contemporary game developers. It's weird to think of a time before the adjective "indie" described video games.

The older I get, the tighter I embrace my childhood dreams. I'm so grateful for all the support I've received in the near two decades I've struggled to make an RPG. The sincere messages I occasionally receive mentioning how they used to play the game way back when it was Dragon Heart or how they still have their scratch and sniff stickers are my fuel.

Enjoy the demo! I hope to share more with you guys in 2021. Thanks for your support.
  • Production
  • dragonheartman
  • GameMaker Studio 2
  • Action RPG
  • 02/20/2008 08:51 PM
  • 01/03/2021 10:52 PM
  • 01/01/2030
  • 655325
  • 336
  • 16027

Posts

dragonheartman
Developer, Starless Umbra / Heroes of Umbra
2729
On Win8 with my i7 ultrabook fullscreen gets a staggering 25fps due to some filtering algorithm I can't figure out how to disable. The game runs like butter windowed, but the point is 2k3 is just really hard to work with these days. Heroes of Umbra still takes precedence, as it's a much easier project to tackle and it's already feature-complete.

I'll revisit SU in, let's say, the start of 2015. Ideally it'll be something that I can be even more proud of, without ripped and edited resources from obscure SNES JRPGs? Who knows. I'm still around though and working on stuff.
I'm excited to see this project is still alive and well after so many years. ;p It's always had a lot of my respect. Just serves as a testament that Rm2k3 games can still be great in the right hands (and with enough time and dedication!).
One of the best RPG Maker games, I highly recommend it.
One of the best RPG Maker games, I highly recommend it.
One of the best RPG Maker games, I highly recommend it.
Is the full release gonna be put up soon? I've been looking forward to playing the whole game for years and haven't heard any news since 2013...
dragonheartman
Developer, Starless Umbra / Heroes of Umbra
2729
Unfortunately not any time soon. RM2k3 is not a viable engine for me any more, so I'm planning on writing my own. You can check the website for more information and updates. Once I have a more formal plan I will update here too, of course.
So long as Ransack makes a cameo from Heroes I can wait.
dragonheartman
Developer, Starless Umbra / Heroes of Umbra
2729
Ransack will definitely be a thing.
Oh my. I can't wait to play this in your new engine
I think Dyn C++ is enough to make a good retro game.
Not perfect, but still good enough.
But I hope you come to bring a full release to SU someday
^^
dragonheartman
Developer, Starless Umbra / Heroes of Umbra
2729
I hope so too!
Thanks~!
I really like this game, but for some reason, my attacks cannot generate EP, is anyone else suffering the same problem?
dragonheartman
Developer, Starless Umbra / Heroes of Umbra
2729
author=Yoshiking777
I really like this game, but for some reason, my attacks cannot generate EP, is anyone else suffering the same problem?

That's my fault, sorry.
I posted a fix here:
http://www.starlessumbra.com/post/120108979846/first-of-all-great-game-and-idea-i-am-eagerly

Hope that helps. Thank you for playing.
0 of 10 episodes complete.....I got this feeling this is not ever going to be completed.
dragonheartman
Developer, Starless Umbra / Heroes of Umbra
2729
We'll I've effectively started over this year.
It really was hard for me to come to the conclusion but I don't think RPG Maker 2003 gives me the freedom I need to complete something that I'd be completely satisfied with.
author=ryan7251
0 of 10 episodes complete.....I got this feeling this is not ever going to be completed.

No offense lol, but that's a really awful attitude to have. Comments like aren't nescessary. We should be encouraging each-other in this community; especially people like DHM who have poured in nearly a decade of work.