Cave Story was developed by Daisuke "Pixel" Amaya on his own. It was released on December 20, 2004 in the Japanese language. While Pixel has produced the game, other people also took in interest to do work on the game from a translation to a mainstream release on Nintendo consoles and handhelds. Aeon Genesis translated the game to English. SkyeWelse developed a Tribute Site to give back to Pixel as well as bring in new fans of Cave Story.
Cave Story involves a robot from the surface named Quote who wakes up in a cave with no memory of his purpose of his existence. Quote finds his way to Mimiga Village and discovers that, Toroko, an inhabitant of the village, who by was abducted because he was mistaken for a girl named Sue. Sue is a human girl from the surface who was transformed into a Mimiga and was the person the Doctor intended to kidnap. The Doctor intentions are to create an army of rapid Mimigas and dominate the surface world. Quote must discover the purpose of his life, what makes the Mimigas into ferocious creatures and put a halt to the Doctors plans to invade the surface. During Quote’s adventure, he will meet up with several characters which in some cases require him to make a decision. His decision how he interact with those characters will reflect the outcome of the game. That is probably the only downside of the game. It can be very aggravating trying to get the best ending when the player realizes he made an incorrect decision, so the player forced to play through the game again. Thankfully, Cave Story not that long a game. It is very possible to beat it in a day.
The game play is very reminiscent to the Metroid series, although, it is much more based on story than exploration. You will not find yourself backtracking just for a Missile Expansion or a Life Capsule, though those upgrades exists in the game, but you are likely to come across them along the way to the end of the game. It is usually more likely for the player to backtrack to collect a key item that will progress the story a little more. There are several weapons to find in the game. Some of which can only obtained, again, by decisions you make throughout the game. Weapons are upgraded by collecting Energy Crystal. Every weapon can upgrade to a maximum of three. Some weapons even possess special advantages at maximum level. However, the weapon level decreases when the player takes damage. The difficulty is well balanced. The player is not thrown into a randomly difficult boss early in the game, nor is the map design too easy to traverse really late in the game. Cave Story is very easy from the start but the difficulty racks up as the player progresses through; just how the difficulty of most games should be.
Cave Story was also released on Wiware, DSiware, and is in development for the 3DS; developed by Nicalis. If you have not played Cave Story, then get on that computer of your and download it. It is legal to do so there is no excuse not to try it. You might actually find yourself enjoying it and later purchasing off Wiiware or DSiware which is well worth the money.