A downloadable game for Windows, macOS, and Linux

Buy Now$14.99 USD or more


Underhero is a 2D side-scroller RPG adventure game with turn-based combat… without the turns! Precisely timed actions are your most powerful weapons. It tells an intriguing and mysterious story, full of silly characters brimming with personality, quirky dialogue, and lots of weird humor.

Inspired by Paper Mario and other Nintendo RPGs. It tells the story of a world where the chosen hero has failed and an underling of the main villain takes his place as the new “hero”. Join Elizabeth IV and the little Masked Kid as they journey across the Chestnut Kingdom to defeat your evil boss, Mr. Stitches! Meet friends, foes and other weird characters in the mysterious world of Underhero.


  • Turn-based combat with a twist: there are no turns! Use your reflexes to evade, and your timing to attack or parry! We call it timing-based combat.
  • A sidescrolling RPG adventure full of beautiful pixel art and cartoony aesthetics.
  • A wonderful original soundtrack composed by Stijn van Wakeren.
  • Enemies consider you their ally, so talk to them in-battles for tips, jokes, and lore!
  • Hit enemies with the beat of the music for Groovy~ critical hits!
  • Explore worlds sprinkled with many hidden secrets.
  • Fun and intense boss battles!
  • A story shrouded in mystery, with many twists and turns…

**Seizure Warning**
Certain moments in the game contain flashing lights and/or imagery that may cause discomfort or seizures for those with photosensitive epilepsy.


Important links below!

 Website - Presskit - Steam - Gamejolt - Twitter - Discord - Dev Blog

You can get the Underhero Art Book for free right here!

Demo available!

  • Only Xbox 360 and Xbox One controllers supported. (Full game supports key binding and controller remapping options for all controller brands.)
  • Windows only.
  • Have fun!

PlatformsWindows, macOS, Linux
Release date Sep 19, 2018
Rated 4.6 out of 5 stars
(299 total ratings)
AuthorPaper Castle
GenreRole Playing, Rhythm
Made withAdobe Photoshop, FL Studio, Unity, Audacity, Bfxr
Tags2D, chiptune, Colorful, Dark Humor, Funny, Mystery, Parody, Pixel Art, Side Scroller
Average sessionA few hours
InputsKeyboard, Xbox controller
LinksSteam, Homepage, Twitter, Blog, Steam, Gamejolt, Discord, Youtube


Buy Now$14.99 USD or more

In order to download this game you must purchase it at or above the minimum price of $14.99 USD. You will get access to the following files:

Underhero 4.1.4 Windows 64-bit 308 MB
Underhero 4.1.4 Windows 32-bit 303 MB
Underhero 4.1.4 Linux 301 MB
Underhero 4.1.4 Mac 315 MB

Download demo

Underhero Demo 281 MB

Development log

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Viewing most recent comments 5 to 44 of 129 · Next page · Last page

I just finished the moth boss and am enjoying the game a lot! I have a question though: What is the difference between the timecard save things, and the ones with the glowing orbs when you run by them?

this game is a delight and a half, so much fun


Just finished the game. Had a lot of fun with the majority of the game (except for the last level where it's basically felt like only a puzzle platformer). Only piece of feedback I want to give is make an option to take out the screen flashes outside of cutscenes or to consider it for future games.

I'm not epileptic but the part near the end (and using the parry) gave me a headache and made me want to throw up because of the screen flashing.


If enemies consider me their ally, why would I wanna fight them? Do they see it as a friendly spar or is it something else? From the sounds of it, I could just not kill them, even if it meant less EXP, gold, other given currency or number that you want more of, etc.


hello! i really interested with this game. when i see the trailer, i have a feeling this game will have a unique mechanic. But, when i want to play the demo, it's only available for windows. would you make the demo for Linux? thank you very much :D

Try it on wine or PlayOnLinux. It might work on that.

aah thank you very much for replying to my old comment! :D

Amazing game! I cannot recommend it enough

i havent finished the game yet, but i just booted it up after skimming through the racial equality bundle and DAMN!!! this game scratches an itch for 2d platformers/rpgs that ive had since playing super paper mario when i was like 7. the music is banging, the art is gorgeous, the dialogue is hilarious, and the combat system is surprisingly intuitive! im obsessed with so many npcs and their designs. truly, this is a gift of a game - cannot recommend it enough :)

awesome game!


THIS GAME IS THE BEST RPG EVER its like final fantasy VII but paper mario

amazing game! I was cautious at first because I don't generally play platformers, but this has a totally different feel! I love the character interactions and the twists right from the start. I've only played like twenty minutes of it, but the music is so so cool and aaaaaaa

Easily one of my top favourite games of all time - a tough spot to win, but this game has everything that really hits the mark for me!


I feel like a dumbass, but I can't get out of the "control" screen. Tried to press esc but I was unable to get back, I just started playing :'D

did you ever find a solution?


Yeah this is SUPER annoying. The Delete key will get you back. I have no idea why they didn't program the Escape key for that, too.


Absolutely amazing game! I really love the story, the music is SUCH a bop, I was genuinely invested in a story, which I haven't been in a long time. The main protagonist is super adorable, and all of the villains are thought-provoking, especially when it comes to their backgrounds.

Loving this game. It made me invested, the art was phenomenal and satisfying, and the fighting mechanic was unique and got my adrenaline rushing a fair amount.

Definitely recommend to anyone! Made me laugh and smile, put me up to a challenge without being downright crushing.

I really REALLY hope there's an Underhero 2! :)

Looking forward to more of your amazing work!

Has anyone else (on Linux) had any issues with the game slowing down dramatically and desyncing from the music? My laptop is ancient, so I'm not sure whether this is a game problem or an old hardware problem, and I'd appreciate hearing from other people about it. This doesn't seem to be happening with any other games that can run on my laptop.

It wouldn't be that big a deal, but it makes the rhythm aspect of combat much more difficult, since I have to rely entirely on visual cues and even then the game can become slower or faster without warning.

Hey, so basically i got the palistinian bundle and with it came this game. It looks really interesting and i love the trailer, so i downloaded the mac version (i'm on macOS Catalina) and unzipped the .zip file. This resulted in a folder named Mac that contained what appeared to be the full game, and a second folder that appeared to have nothing in it. When i tried running the game, a window shows up that simply says: The application "Underhero" can't be opened.

Any help would be much appreciated



not the dev but have you tried running it on the itch.io app ? i had the same problem when i downloaded it using the web browser + manually unzipping it onto my desktop (happened with other games too), but it works fine with the app !





Only played an hour of this and I'm already loving it ! the soundtrack is wonderful and I love the art direction & character design, definitely a hidden indie gem.  Very forgiving on deaths and the combat mech is pretty easy to pick up after a couple battles, much more dynamic than traditional turn based games. Excited to play more !


(also the protagonist is adorable and I love the idling animation <3)

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Whenever I launch the game, It opens in  768 x 1024, essentially portrait mode. I can't change the resolution.

Turning on and off full screen doesn't help, and using my 2nd monitor doesn't help either. I'm pretty lost

You can try forcing a new resolution by going to the main menu, then options, and pressing F10.
A new menu will appear, there you can type your preferred resolution and aspect ratio and press enter to confirm.

is there any chance, this will be out for Android 4.1, would like to see it on the OUYA, nVidia ShieldTV or Nintendo Switch

No plans for android, but it is out for Switch since last year! https://www.nintendo.com/games/detail/underhero-switch/


Pressing the button to turn on vsync doesnt seem to do anything? If someone could help with this it would be much appreciated

This game is a masterpiece oh my god. It's infinitely charming, the characters are cute as hell, and the story line is phenomenal.  God, I don't even have the words for how amazing this game is and how thoroughly I recommend it.

First, some of the non-story stuff: LOVE the groovy mechanics, and especially the music itself. The soundtrack was honestly just so good; I spent a lot of time just bopping in the save rooms lol.

(I would recommend putting something in the options menu to allow players to turn off the full-screen flashes that occasionally appear. They're kind of jarring, and that was my least favorite part of the funky (you know the part) underwater bit.


Okay, so. Story. The whole intro bit with the chandelier IMMEDIATELY had me hooked. The concept is beautiful, and oh my god that little masked kid. I was in love immediately!! Realizing that I could swim indefinitely, but couldn't wall jump, and that this was because I was a 'bad guy' and not a hero; that was amazing. So clever!

I loved the whole game, but I think what stuck out to me the most was the boss battle with T. Bur. Elizabeth totally gives up, everyone's just wallowing on the floor... and the Masked Kid goes and defeats T. Bur all on their own. No help. No legendary weapon. Just a little clone kid doin' their best. It was amazing, a really fantastic feeling.

And the ending? The ending's twist? Stunning! Stitches' boss battle was so fun; the first phase was fun but fairly normal, and the moment his 'second phase' started with the darkness and Cereza's bombs, this game solidified its spot on my list of "Favorite Games of All Time." And the last phase of Stitches' battle was, oh my god, so good. It was so emotional and beautiful!!! Everyone showing up to help, the other lil' masked kids showing up as thanks for Being Cool, watching everyone else beat Stitches up, even the other minions appearing in the foreground with T. Bur... Wow. It reminded me of the last scenes of Undertale's true ending... Which was the last time I felt this emotionally moved by a game, I think. But Underhero, damn. Yeah, that got me.

The dice battle... That was funky. Not what I expected, and the controls were pretty hard to get used to (mostly because I personally just don't have a great grasp on directions lol), but the Cool Factor was totally worth it. I loved seeing the little code blocks on the walls! And the actual battle with the dice dude was super cool, if a little difficult to comprehend. But the little blocks with comments from all the Masked Kid's friends really tied it together, that was an adorable way to win!

The ending made me sad... but I'm very encouraged by the potential for a sequel! ;)

Another question. When starting the version 4.1.4 of the game, in top corner when you go to "Options" it actually says 4.1.5. Is this correct? Is it 4.1.4 or 4.1.5?

Hey just had a thought. Since it's free, could you add the artbook to GOG and Steam? Additionaly how about the soundtrak (for purchase instead of just Bandcamp)?

A wonderful game, I played it a while back. The characters were great, and the story was really neat. I greatly enjoyed the gameplay, and really it was just a lovely experience all around. Thanks for making it.


will there be a steam key for this game if you buy it here?


Sorry but no. If you prefer Steam you should probably get it there, since there is no difference between builds.


Please add a steam key.  Sometimes the games are added through bundles, I dont want to have to keep track of games

Hello! Playing the game and just went into the big tree. I was curious though: is there a pacifist ending to this for bribing/talking your way through all combats? Is that even possible?


There is only one ending no matter what you do, no worries.

played the entire game before there was a price

and let me tell you, if I had the money right now i would buy this game

it's an amazing game through and through although i had the problem of lag with the second boss i hope that was fixed now.

amazing story, underrated game so i rate it 5 stars in hopes of it being big.


Dude what a game, I mean the writing was just phenomenal.  Legitmately, Mr. Stitches has become one of my favorite video game characters just too cool. Just an absolute beast of a villain and I would never betray him.

   - Mr. Stitches Loyalist


What a gem of a game. There is so much I love about it I don't know where to begin...  I could not stop playing, & when I did I could not stop thinking about it lol. Intriguing characters and storyline. Perfectly executed gameplay.  Endearing art & soundtrack. The developers put a lot of thought into every aspect of the game & it shows!!

Time-based combat is so smart, takes away the frustration of waiting helplessly, & keeps the anticipation up. The puzzles inbuilt into maps were so cleverly done as well!! 

The twists in the story are so well done too!! They don't just come out of nowhere, as there is quite a bit of foreshadowing. & whenever something is revealed all the pieces of the puzzle come together so perfectly it's satisfying. 

This game is so smart, thinks out of the box, & gets pretty meta lol.

I've found my fav game ever!! <3 


hey, whats with the controls? and why is it so hard to change them?


Had a real fun time with this! Is there anywhere we could buy/download the music for this game? It's very good.

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Hey, I am about to start playing the game. I observed that, in the options menu, if you set the music volume to zero, it doesn't affect the menu music. However, upon restarting the game, the menu music volume was affected.

I just wanted to say that out of the -many- games I have played from the racial justice bundle, Underhero has been my favorite so far! I'll definitely buy Underhero 2 on its own if/when it comes out, and I'll be keeping an ear out for anything that comes  from Paper Castle Games in the future!


i played this on the switch and had to put my review on here cause I Love it so much. It's got so much heart and you can feel the passion that went into this. It's a real fun and charming game, even if it's not totally perfect, it's still a SUPER GOOD Game in my opinion, and the ending part blew me away. <3


Gonna say it my favorite game in years if not my entire life, I am so glad this was in the racial equality bundle

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I like every part of Masked Kid's design - from the mask & general look to the fact that Elizabeth just decides to call them "kid" and gender doesn't really factor into the game or your character at all to the adorable journal they keep that gives them a lot of character despite them not talking at all - A+ character design there.

I like the music & sound design. I like the level design, I like the puzzles, I like that the game is linear (I found backtracking to be very minimal & justified, filled more with suspense for whatever you're going back for than boredom).

I love the combat system - keysmashing combat is never fun for me, so I like that there's a level of strategy and space to think -  I didn't understand the description of 'turn-based combat... without the turns!' when I first read it, but it absolutely has the best parts of turn-based combat while also having the tension & urgency of non-turn-based combat. There are plenty of enemies, while still not being too much considering that you have to remember specific hints for each one of them. It was easy-going and unpunishing with nonviolent alternatives to most fights, while not being boring. Boss combat was always harder & more interesting than usual combat, but doable without too many frustrating failures + every time I failed, I felt like I knew what I did wrong and knew how to do better next time.

I love the design of the Moth Queen and Stitches. I wish all games were so creative with their bosses & characters in general.

I love the humor, I love the storyline, I LOVE the twist(s!). Games with good stories are always my favorite and the story here is amazingly done. I love that instead of getting pre-set status upgrades when you level up, you have to decide what's most important to you. I stuck with this game all the way through to the end (which I loved, even though the very last battle's controls didn't work well enough for me to complete the game... that being said, the controls in the entire proceeding game were stellar).


The Monkan society... was bad. Monkeys, dressed in leaf loincloths & colorful masks, that are being 'kidnapped and enslaved' by El Sanserissimo... their chief talks in broken English that is reminiscent of racist stereotypes about Jamaican accents and AAVE... Elizabeth constantly calling them savages, remarking how 'surprisingly civilized' it is for them to not support child marriage... the bit where the chief says something about eating Masked Kid, then reassures Masked Kid & Elizabeth that he was only joking, and she says '... sure you were.'

I'm sure you weren't making them with racist intent (including this in the Racial Justice Bundle makes me guess that you care, at least to some degree, about racism), but in making this 'savage', 'uncivilized' monkey society you invoked a lot of racism (it's worth noting that 'savage,' 'civilized,' and 'uncivilized' are all inherently racist terms/concepts, & while not everything I listed above are racial stereotypes about Black people, they are all racialized in relation to savagery: the idea of 'savage' African & Native cultures participating in child marriage and/or cannibalism, espcially as a result/proof of their savagery/inferiority, is one with a very long, very racist history).

The rock enemies (can't remember their names - the ones on Pica Pica Island) reminded me of those "Mexican" halloween costumes. El Sanserissimo also felt like a stereotype to me.

As far as more nitpicky stuff goes...

The first Gray Kid fight was, to me, a lot harder than most of the game before and after it, which felt off - her attacks were timed in a way that made her really hard to parry.

The very final boss fight, while I appreciate that it flipped the game on its head in a way that was very exciting, was also extremely hard: I knew what to do, I was doing it, but it wasn't working - those controls were difficult to fight with in a way that wasn't fun.

Hopefully this feedback will be helpful to you in making any future games.

(Edit: to anyone thinking of getting this game, I do want to emphasize again that overall I really did love this game. I initially put off writing this whole comment because I didn't want to put anyone off the game, especially since indie games tend to take criticism harder than big companies and I definitely want to support Paper Castle in making such creative, unique games. The Monkan society was very jarring to me when I first played this game, but I hope you'll play this game because it's legitimately one of the best games I've played. I really, really do recommend it - every criticism I have made comes from a place of love. It's rare that I fall as deeply in love with a game as I did with this one. It's absolutely an "indie gem" and I think it's definitely worth your time.)


Hey there! First of all thank you so much for playing the game and sharing your feedback.

Before addressing your points, we should probably clarify that we're developers from Venezuela, not the USA. This is not to say that we're beyond criticism because we're latinx, but that certain things that are seen as harmful in the US might have gone over our heads because we come from a different background. 

There are many references of Venezuelan culture hidden in the game that most players will probably not get, and Pica Pica tribe was one of them. The Pica Pica tribe was intended to be a reference to a group of Venezuelan indigenous people called the Yanomami. Even though Elizabeth says they're "uncivilized", the joke was supposed to be that they're actually just like the other minions (if you check their houses they actually have very good living conditions, with TVs, ACs, and big beds. And all of them speak perfect English except for the chief). Elizabeth is just very prejudiced against minions in general, and at that point in the story she's slowly overcoming it. 

Los Duros have two first hispanics names (which is common for us) and use mariachi hats to hide their weaknesses. El Salserissimo is a reference to Salsa music and to Hispanic characters in Hollywood movies that occasionally say words in broken Spanish, except this time el Salserissimo speaks correct and coherent Spanish between his English lines. 

That said, we understand that what we made can be considered in bad taste and even harmful, and we do regret it. These jokes and references came from a place of ignorance, never hate, and we're truly sorry if they caused any harm. 

Like you said, the reason we wanted to include the game in the bundle is because we care deeply about issues of racism. We grew up in a country of stark economical and social inequality, and it took us years to learn and break free of the awful beliefs we grew up with. It took us many years to make this game (almost 5 years), so much so that our ideals and beliefs have changed and continue to change to this day. 

We're still learning, and we'll definitely take this criticism into account when working on future games. Again, thank you for sharing your thoughts with us.

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I appreciate your response, and I can absolutely see where you're coming from. Los Duros & El Sanserissimo reminded me of stereotypes (especially as an American, we have - especially historically - a lot of shallow, stereotypical representation of Mexicans that roughly amounts to "sombrero + mustache +  maybe a poncho + spanish accent + spanish words randomly thrown in with english sentences = Mexican") but now that you've explained I entirely see the ways in which they were intended to & did undermine those stereotypes.

Thank you for being open to my criticism and responding thoughtfully. Underhero is otherwise a wonderful game and I'm looking forward to seeing future work of yours : )


Thank you for understanding, we're glad you enjoyed the game overall (despite the hiccups you described).  We're looking forward to making better games for everyone to enjoy ^^

When I played the game, it reminded me of the times I used to play alot of obscure browser flash games for some reason
It has similar vibes to one but its also so much better. I'm glad I got to experience this game. I can't wait to see what's next!

I've added this game to Cloudsaver


fantastic game, I have been recommending it to all my friends who are into the indie game scen

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