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FromSoftware, Inc. 『株式会社フロム・ソフトウェア』 is a Japanese game developer founded in 1986. Outside their home country, they are known for Nintendo Hard games involving Humongous Mecha and their brutally addictive Action-RPGs, Demon's Souls, the Dark Souls trilogy, and Bloodborne. Generally speaking, almost every game they make tends to either go against the grain or has something to distinguish itself from the competition.

In early-mid 2014, Kadokawa announced that they acquired 80% of FromSoftware, ending nearly 20 years of independence.


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Games developed or published by FromSoftware:

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Armored Core series

King's Field series

  • King's Field I, II, III, IV
  • King's Field Additional I & II
  • King's Field Mobile I & II, EX


Recurring tropes in FromSoftware's works:

  • BFG: The Karasawa Gun, often used as one of the strongest rifles available (Armored Core usually has it as an Infinity +1 Sword).
  • BFS: The Moonlight Sword, a regular among the the strongest blades available (laser blades in Armored Core, magic swords in the Souls series, bazookas in the Metal Wolf Chaos).
  • invokedBig Name Fan: Company president and director-in-chief Hidetaka Miyazaki has Devilman and Berserk on his shelf. He's also confirmed he loves Runescape, A Song of Ice and Fire, and the Team Ico Series. As of Bloodborne, fans are speculating that he has been on a Lovecraft binge as well.
  • Crapsack World: The setting for Armored Core is less than optimistic, with each new installment escalating the global conflict and the pathos of war. The same can be said for the Souls series, with a recursive plot involving the fall of a great kingdom and the inexorable rise of darkness. Bloodborne adds Cosmic Horror to classic torch-and-pitchfork Gothic Horror using epic amounts of corrupted chum upon stunningly bleak city- and landscapes.
  • Creator's Oddball: Deracine is a gentle VR adventure game with no combat.
  • Creator Thumbprint: Games directed by Hidetaka Miyazaki tend to share a few key elements, namely...
    • A significant focus on smooth, complex melee combat.
    • Giving the player character canon Resurrective Immortality as an in-story reason for the ubiquitous gameplay loop of dying and respawning.
    • Making the final battle a Duel Boss of some kind, usually a tragic one.
    • Dense, interconnected level design.
    • Cryptic story and lore.
    • A Player Headquarters with a loyal female NPC who either levels you up or enhances your healing abilities.
    • He also seems to really enjoy Fallen Heroes, Tragic Monsters, and the Was Once a Man trope.
  • invokedGod Never Said That: Souls series creator Hidetaka Miyazaki has been misquoted in more than one way:
    • Fans of both Berserk and the Souls games often talk about Berserk being a primary, or even the inspiration of Souls based on an interview where Miyazaki acknowledged that he is a Berserk reader, but that's probably a big exaggeration. For example, after mentioning Berserk in that interview, he attributes most of his inspiration for the Souls games to his collection of Western Tabletop RPGs and Fantasy Literature, as well as the earlier FromSoftware game series King's Field and the Fighting Fantasy game books. He does say in the same interview that when Art Designer Masanori Waragai showed him his Catarina armor design, he felt reminded of Bazuso from Berserk and thought that old design was appropriate for Siegmeyer's character concept, but this is one of the few parallels or Shout Outs he has actually acknowledged. It wouldn't be inaccurate to say that Berserk has had some influence on the games, such as when he acknowledged that the greatsword artes and playstyle in Dark Souls 3 were inspired by Guts, but fanon tends to blow it out of proportion and treat Dark Souls as if it were practically Berserk with the serial numbers filed off.
    • After Dark Souls 1 came out, That One Boss The Bed of Chaos was so poorly-received that it was said that Miyazaki had publicly apologised for it being so bad. He actually made no such apology.
  • Mythology Gag: A number of them appear between FromSoftware's titles
    • The Moonlight Sword, mentioned above, is a massive sword with an immaterial blade of blue-green light. In the King’s Field games, it's a magical claymore of great power. In Armored Core, it's the most potent Laser Blade, balancing length and intensity. In Demon's Souls, its blade ignores physical barriers: namely shields. The Dark Souls games allow it to be blocked, but grant it a Sword Beam ability, and Bloodborne makes it a seemingly ordinary claymore that may adopt the Dark Souls traits on command. In the Metal Wolf Chaos, it's a very powerful bazooka-type weapon, which looks like a sword with handle and shoulder rest from "Super Bazooka" and shoots slow-moving vertical lightning discharges.
    • Patches appears in Armored Core: For Answer as Patch the Good Luck, a cowardly sniper who abandons his faction as soon as he notices his life is at risk. In Demon's Souls, he's Patches the Hyena, a grave robber who promises treasure to unwitting adventurers, only to kick them into a pit full of dangerous enemies so he can rob their corpses for things to sell. In Dark Souls 1 and 3, he's Trusty Patches and Unbreakable Patches respectively (these two seem to be the exact same person) and does the same thing as his Demon's counterpart. The same goes for Bloodborne’s Patches the Spider, with the minor change that he's literally a spider. He is absent from Dark Souls 2, however an Expy named Mild-Mannered Pate is present instead, who has a different look and voice as well as a slightly different MO — he still tricks people into getting killed by traps by promising them treasure, they're just not his traps. He just wants a guinea pig to sacrifice to the trap and get rid of the danger so that he can have the treasure all to himself. He also doesn't seem to rob corpses.
      • And a notable side-note: Patches always uses the most cowardly fighting style possible when confronted. In Armored Core, he snipes from great heights, avoiding direct combat entirely. In the Souls games, he tries to avoid confrontation entirely, preferring to dispatch his marks with trickery and kicking people into enemy-filled pits, and if forced to fight, he wields a spear from behind a greatshield (and in Demon's Souls especially, he uses the health-regenerating Adjudicator's Shield along with the Scraping Spear which causes massive equipment degradation). Pate uses this fighting style as well.
      • What’s more, Patches always has a special (and usually mutual) hatred of the clergy, whoever they may be in the game's universe. Except in Bloodborne, where he pretty much is a member of the clergy in all but name (to Amygdala).
      • Also, falling for Patches's tricks usually gives you an opportunity to forgive him for tricking you. Usually choosing "no" will result in him giving you extra rewards as a way of sucking back up to you, but either way he becomes a merchant for the rest of the game.
  • Nintendo Hard: A large amount of their published games throw in some particularly nasty Classic Video Game "Screw You"s, including, but not limited to: Checkpoint Starvation, Kaizo Trap, numerous boss battle types, Spiteful A.I., Early Game Hell, Guide Dang It!, etc.
  • Scenery Gorn/Scenery Porn: An amazing mixture of both; when they want to convey the greatness of a scene, they do so with every cent of their budget. And when they want bleakness... let's just say nausea isn't too strong a word to apply.

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