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Video Game / Five Nights at Freddy's

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"Family pizzeria looking for security guard to work the nightshift. 12 am to 6 am. Monitor cameras, ensure safety of equipment and animatronic characters. Not responsible for injury/dismemberment."
— Newspaper ad for Freddy Fazbear's Pizza

Congratulations, you have a new job as the night watchman at Freddy Fazbear's Pizza! It couldn't be simpler: you spend the night watching the security cameras for any sign of trouble... not that you would have to expect any trouble at such a quiet, innocent place.

... well, if we're being completely honest, we know you've probably heard rumours that the animatronic characters tend to... wander a bit at night. And if they spot you, they'll stuff your fleshy body into an empty costume filled with needlessly sharp metal components. But even if those were true, you don't need to worry, because you can just close the doors to your office.

... okay, if you want full disclosure, closing the doors will use up part of the small amount of generator power you're allotted each night. Yeah, the company doesn't like to waste money on things like needless amounts of electricity, especially for a night shift. Checking the cameras and turning on the lights to check your blind spots will also use up power. But really, what's the worst that could happen if the power goes out? You just sit in the dark for a while with two very open doors — no big deal. And no, the pizzeria has nothing to do with the five children that disappeared on June 26th.


You really don't have anything to worry about. You acknowledged as much when you signed your legally-binding employment contract. It's just five nights.

What could possibly go wrong?

Five Nights at Freddy's (released on August 8th, 2014) is a horror-themed strategy game by Scott Cawthon and the first in the eponymous franchise. It's based around resource management: you have a nonrenewable source of electricity that drains every time you use the cameras, shut the doors, or turn on the lights. If an animatronic enters the office, it will kill you instantly. If you make it to 6 AM, you live to work another night shift.

Each animatronic (Bonnie, Chica, Foxy, and the titular Freddy) has a different pattern and triggers, which makes learning those patterns and triggers a must if you want to win. The real horror from the game comes not from the jump scares that happen when you lose (and sometimes even when you win), but from the frantic horror of trying to keep an eye on your potential killers while handling your electricity in the most efficient way possible.


You can purchase the game on Desura, Steam, Google Play, and the iTunes App Store.

A follow-up, titled Five Nights at Freddy's 2, was released on November 10th, 2014.

In August of 2020, as part of the "Fazbear Fanverse Initiative", an semi-official (but non-canon) remake/reimagining of the game was officially confirmed by Scott Cawthon, to be made by fangame creator Phisnom (who previously made Five Nights at Freddy's 2 Open Source and Porkchop's Adventure). Later that month, the remake's title was officially confirmed as Five Nights at Freddy's Plus.

Five Nights at Freddy's provides examples of:

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  • The '80s: Phone Guy's first call mentions the Bite of '87, which involved an animatronic biting off someone's frontal lobe and ultimately led to the characters only being permitted to wander the building at night.
  • The '90s: Although the year when the five nights take place is listed as the year XX in-game, the minimum wage rate ($4.00 per hour) indicates the game is set in 1993.
  • Agent Scully: The Phone Guy's explanation for the animatronics attacking you is that if they see you, they mistake you for a bare endoskeleton and shove you into an animatronic suit. It is unknown if the Phone Guy genuinely believes in what he says or if he is trying to hide the fact that the animatronics are haunted from Mike.
  • Alone with the Psycho: You're working the night shift alone in a closed pizza joint with four and a halfnote  murderous robot animals from midnight to dawn.
  • And I Must Scream: The bodies of the murdered children were placed inside the animatronics, and their souls possessed the robots, now killing night guards without any hope of getting set free.
  • Apocalyptic Log: Though it's hardly an apocalyptic scenario, the Phone Guy's recorded messages are pretty nightmarish. It becomes truer to the trope on Night 4, when as things seem to be going horribly wrong for him, from Foxy banging on one of the doors, Bonnie and Chica moaning, and Freddy playing the Toreador Song, building up to a scream that sounds exactly like the one you hear when you get killed by Golden Freddy.
  • Arson, Murder, and Jaywalking: After completing the Custom Night, the management fires you for "tampering with the animatronics", "general unprofessionalism", and "odor".
  • Artificial Stupidity: As capable as the AI is at messing with you, when the mascots ultimately come for you, they will always come from the same directions. Bonnie and Foxy will only ever come at you from the left, Chica and Freddy always from the right; unless the power goes out, in which case Freddy comes from the left.
  • Ascended Meme: The tagline for the Android port of the game is "Are you ready for Freddy?", a phrase popularized on 4chan.
  • Behind the Black: One tactic the animatronics use is to slip into the room when your monitor is up.
  • Black Comedy:
    • The sheer awfulness of working at Freddy's is lampshaded in the phone messages and sometimes played for dark laughs. In the newspaper's "Help Wanted" section, there's even this message: "Not responsible for injury/dismemberment."
    • The Bite of '87 has absolutely no lore significance beyond explaining why the animatronics no longer wander the restaurant during the day. Phone Guy's deadpan explanation of the aftermath really sells it.
      Phone Guy: It's amazing that the human body can live without the frontal lobe, y'know?
  • Black Speech: The final telephone call, Bonnie and Chica's electronic gibbering from Night 4 onward, and the "IT'S ME" visual hallucination have this. Although some have pointed out that the sounds used are stock sounds that came with the game engine used, others deduced that it is actually a backwards masked message with the pitch dropped down. It's difficult to make out the entire message, but someone was able to figure it out. It is an excerpt from Autobiography of a Yogi by Paramhansa Yogananda. Appropriately enough, this is an excerpt from the section in which the yogi demonstrates that metal is alive.
    (Omitted: Sir,) it is lamentable that mass agricultural development is not speeded by fuller use of your marvelous mechanisms. Would it not be easily possible to employ some of them in quick laboratory experiments to indicate the influence of various types of fertilizers on plant growth?" "You are right. Countless uses of (omitted: Bose instruments) will be made by future generations. The scientist seldom knows contemporaneous reward; it is enough to possess the joy of creati- (omitted: -ve service.)
  • Bloodless Carnage: Despite the horrific manner in which your death is implied, surprisingly, this game contains no blood or gore, aside from your character's eyeballs (with the veins in plain sight, so presumably still attached to the skull) appearing out of the eyes from the Freddy costume's head and a human set of teeth behind the costume's set on the game over screen.
  • Bond Villain Stupidity: When you run out of power, Freddy appears in the left doorway and plays his jingle for dramatic effect when he could just have killed you. Sometimes this gives you just enough time to make it to six AM.
  • Brain Food: The Bite of '87, an incident where one of the animatronics bit off someone's frontal lobe.
  • Bread, Eggs, Milk, Squick:
    • Newspaper Advertisement:
      Family pizzeria looking for security guard to work the nightshift. 12 am to 6 am. Monitor cameras, ensure safety of equipment and animatronic characters. Not responsible for injury/dismemberment.
    • And from the East Hall, we have the Rules for Safety:
      1. Don't run. 2. Don't yell. 3. Don't scream. 4. Don't poop on floor. 5. Stay close to mom. 6. Don't touch Freddy. 7. Don't hit. 8. Leave before dark. Thank You, Management
  • Brutal Bonus Level:
    • Night 6, unlocked after finishing the main game.
    • Then there is the Custom Night/Night 7, which as a Level Editor you can manipulate so it becomes this. Setting the AI for all robots to 20 ensures a very hectic night.
  • Camera Screw: Sometimes the words "IT'S ME" will briefly flash on a camera screen if you look at them. Freddy's face will also flash from time to time, and they just get worse as the week goes on. Also, as the days go on, Bonnie and Chica may appear to flicker and twitch on your screen when in fact they're standing still.
  • Can't Move While Being Watched: The main shtick of all the animatronics is that, for the majority of the game, they remain perfectly still as long as the player is viewing them on his monitor, but move when they are unobserved. They will only move onscreen when twitching or directly attacking the player. Staring at them won't completely stop them, however, as there are random intervals where the camera will glitch out and they will move.
  • Casual Danger Dialogue: Phone Guy seems pretty unconcerned that he's about to die in the Night 4 phone call.
  • Catchphrase: Phone Guy has "Hello, hello!", which he says at the start of his voicemails.
  • Challenge Run: The last night is Custom Night, where one can adjust how difficult each animatronic is. It can be used to make them super easy and give you a relatively relaxed night… or you can crank the AI up to make it harder for yourself. The most difficult is '4/20 Mode', where you set the AI of all four animatronics to 20, which is the maximum. It's insanely difficult and only beatable by really skilled power management, reflexes, and a lot of luck and perseverance. Not even the creator has been able to do it.
  • Controllable Helplessness:
    • If the player allows either Bonnie or Chica to linger for too long outside of the doors while said doors are open, they will sneak into the room and disable the door and light buttons on that side. From here, the player can still look right and left, but can't check the camera.note  This leaves them with virtually nothing to do but to click the broken buttons and, in the case of the left door being jammed, wait for Foxy to charge in. Or in the case of the right door, let Freddy sneak in and then pounce on you.
    • If you run out of power, the cameras, lights, and doors stop working, but you can still turn and look around for a short while until Freddy kills you.
  • Corrupted Character Copy: The main four animatronics are hostile, neglected versions of various mascots Chuck E. Cheese has had over the year:
    • Freddy is modeled after Billy Bob, as both are brown bear band leaders who double as the main singer and face of their franchise.
    • Chica is based off of fellow chicken and back up singer Helen Henny, who also suffered from similar major, radical redesigns over the years.
    • Bonnie is Mister Munch, another purple replacement for the original franchise costar.
    • Foxy rounds out the group as Foxy Colleen Flanagan's male counterpart, both being side attractions that were left to rot immediately after surviving a rebranding deal.
  • Corrupt Corporate Executive: One interpretation of the pizzeria's decisions. Despite The Bite of '87, the killer robots, and all the possible death they've caused along with the kid's/guard's innards still implied to be inside them and never removed, they still tried to get parents and businesses on their side and keep everything going 'for the kids' without ever fixing anything. Although it may or may not be entirely their fault, it didn't work out for them.
  • Cosmetic Award: Stars adorning the main menu screen are rewarded upon completing the fifth and sixth nights, and after people started to beat the custom mode with the hardest AI difficulties, the maker of the game added an unlockable third star for the menu to showcase it.
  • Cower Power: Phone Guy tells you to play dead (i.e., don't move at all) if you're ever caught. This is actually a subversion, as freezing in place does nothing.
  • Crapsack World: The backstory of the Pizzeria, and the fact that it's somehow still open, can give this vibe. On the other hand, the fact that it's bankrupt and due to close by year's end indicates there's some amount of justice.
  • Creator Cameo: Scott Cawthon himself voices Phone Guy.
  • Creepy Shadowed Undereyes: Between their eyes directly attached to their endoskeletons, and the eye holes of their costumes, the animatronics all have this.
  • Cutting the Knot: Foxy will simply charge you if you don't keep the camera on him regularly.
  • Damn You, Muscle Memory!: Unlike most games, pressing Esc doesn't pause the game; it closes it.
  • Dangerous Workplace: In the day, the place should be safe. By night, the four killer mascots will haunt the restaurant and stuff the night watch in a Freddy suit full of animatronic parts.
  • Darkness Equals Death: If you let the power drain too early in the night, Freddy walks into your office unopposed. Unless you're very close to the end of the night, death is unavoidable at this point.
  • Daylight Horror: Implied by the Phone Guy's account of The Bite of '87, stating it as the reason why the characters are no longer allowed to roam during the day. It also heavily implies that The Bite took place during the business hours of the restaurant, in front of many children and parents. Later confirmed in the second game.
  • Death Glare: In the trailer, the animatronics briefly turn and stare at the camera with the angriest expression they can manage; in the actual game, Foxy sports a deranged-looking glare with Glowing Eyes of Doom when he starts emerging from his curtain, not helped by the fact he's holding his hook to his chin as if pondering whether to attack you or not.
  • Death of a Child: In the backstory, five children were kidnapped and murdered.
  • Developer's Foresight: On the custom night, you can set the four AI's difficulties anywhere from 0-20. If you enter the difficulties as 1-9-8-7 (1987; the Bite of '87), Golden Freddy's death screen appears. This was done to kill rumors about a secret ending.
  • Dramatic Disappearing Display: When you lose all of your power, the power and usage HUD will disappear. The clock and night number also become absent.
  • Dude, Where's My Reward?: Scott Cawthon didn't believe it was possible to beat 4/20 mode. Because of this, he never bothered programming a special ending or something like that for completing it. In other words, when you originally beat 4/20 mode (a nigh impossible night in which every animatronic is cranked to absolute max difficulty), your reward was...absolutely nothing. This was changed when 4/20 mode was beaten for the first time, to which Cawthon added a third (and final) star in response.
  • Early-Installment Weirdness: This game has numerous examples compared to future installments:
    • It's very light on story (what the later games made a big deal of were effectively Easter Eggs), without any arcade minigames to help explain the plot.
    • It includes flashing hallucinations that don't show up ever again.
    • Maintaining power and dying when the lights go out is only in this game.
    • Golden Freddy's appearance is preceded by a poster changing instead of him just showing up.
    • Freddy actually has a distinct role as opposed to the other games, where he's pretty much on the level of every other animatronic.
  • Earn Your Happy Ending: If you complete Custom Night, you get fired. Probably the only time one will be happy about being fired.
  • Easy Level Trick:
    • Subverted for Night 1. Both Bonnie and Chica will only attack you if you put down the camera, so one may think it's safe to just idle without using the camera at all. Doing so will activate Foxy, who will probably kill you. Granted, you can just wait till 2 AM, then lock the left door. Doing so will effectively make you safe for the rest of the night, so long as you don't bring the camera up.
    • Before a patch in September 2014 nerfed Freddy and Foxy's more frustrating behavior, a strategy often used by LetsPlayers is something like this: switch the camera feed to Pirate Cove and don't switch again until you see Foxy leave, in which you can switch it to the West Hall after you seal the left door (don't forget to open the door once you hear the banging). Seal the right door before bringing the camera up, then open it after it is down. Check the hall lights for Bonnie and Chica; if they appear, seal the necessary door and wait until they leave and you can open it again. Rinse and repeat. If you do it correctly, this strategy works nearly 100% of the time and is particularly effective in the later nights (although it can't be denied that the 4/20 challenge does require a bit of luck, especially whether Freddy is going to play his jingle short or long after the lights go out).
  • Electronic Speech Impediment: The Night 5 call and some hard-to-hear speech from Bonnie and Chica when they're right outside your room from Night 4 onward are this. The "IT'S ME" visual hallucination is also accompanied by the same sound. As for what it is, see Black Speech above.
  • Everything Trying to Kill You: Yes indeed. A specific poster of Golden Freddy will trigger his appearance in the office, and he will kill you unless you quickly pull up the monitor again.
  • Evil Duo: Bonnie and Chica are almost always active together (on Night 1, it's possible to have just one walking around while the other stays onstage). Unless you made one of them super easy on the Night 7.
  • Evil Laugh: If you hear one during gameplay, it means that Freddy's out and about. Or that something else got in while you weren't looking…
  • Excuse Plot: The owners' ignorance of the killer animatronics and the player character's insistence on continuing to work the job don't make much sense, that's for sure. Ridiculous as the plot may be, however, it's ultimately just a setup for some gameplay that was given much more TLC. The main assumption could be that since the player never canonically dies, the character may not understand just how dangerous the situation is. There's also the popular theory that, based on the music Freddy plays when the power goes out, that he's calling Mike out on coming back because he enjoys the thrill of it.
  • Eyeless Face:
    • Sometimes, the Animatronics will have their faces right in the camera, specifically Bonnie and Freddy. When they do this, they appear effectively eyeless.
    • Golden Freddy appears to have no eyes in his costume's eye holes.
  • Eyes Are Unbreakable: Your character's eyeballs and teeth are the only things that remain of their body after they're shoved in a Freddy suit during a game over. This is in spite of the facial area of the suits being jam-packed with "crossbeams, wires, and animatronic devices" that would be just as likely to mangle these parts as leave them intact.

  • Failsafe Failure: The doors to the office automatically open when the power runs out. While this would be a very good idea in real life (to avoid the possibility of a guard being trapped in the office in the event of the power going out because of a fire), here it spells doom by way of homicidal animatronic. Unless the player is very close to the end of the night, death is unavoidable at this point.
  • First-Episode Twist: At an unknown point in the past, a man dressed in a mascot costume lured five children into a back room, where they were never seen again. Sometime after these disappearances, the robot mascots were reported to ooze blood and mucus from their bodies and smell like corpses, which implies that the children were killed and stuffed into the animatronic suits. The man got caught, but the bodies of the children were never found. The restaurant has fought tooth-and-nail to stay popular ever since these events, but has seemingly failed to do so and is planned to close down by the end of the year.
  • Four Is Death: Phone Guy ends up dead on the fourth night.
  • The Fourth Wall Will Not Protect You: Golden Freddy can crash your whole game if you don't immediately get back on the camera after he appears in the office.
  • Game-Breaking Bug: Invoked. The game is programmed to crash immediately after Golden Freddy's attack screen, skipping the game over animation.
  • Game Face: The animatronics normally have tame facial expressions. But then they begin to turn fiendish…
  • Gameplay and Story Segregation: The animatronics are supposed to be roaming freely at night to keep them operational, but they actually stay put whenever you observe them, except for Foxy, whom you can see running in the West Hall (although once he is back in the Pirate Cove, he's just as immobile as everyone else).
  • Giggling Villain: Freddy uses an unnerving girl's giggle, slowed down. The unaltered sound clip plays whenever the player looks at Golden Freddy's poster.
  • Guide Dang It!: Though each bot has its own attack patterns, the triggers for some attacks can be very difficult to spot. Golden Freddy teleports inside your room if you look at a certain poster on your camera feed and will kill you in a few seconds unless you go back to looking at the camera, and Bonnie and Chica can sabotage your door buttons if you let them stand outside the office with the doors open for too long. And even if you deter Foxy when he decides to make a break for your office, and it looks like he's gone back to his booth, the second you stop observing him, he can immediately spring back out of his booth and attack you again without warning. These patterns are never brought up by the previous guard, and were frequently mistaken for glitches on the Steam forums during the game's release week.
  • Hanlon's Razor: A lot of the horribleness from working at night comes from the management being too incompetent to deal with the robots, if not outright getting rid of them.
  • Harder Than Hard: Night 6 is hard enough as the difficulty hits its peak, but using the Level Editor for Custom Night can make the AI even harder. The definition of this? All A.I.s set to 20, or 4-20 mode. It's practically impossible, what with the huge amount of micromanaging, countering Freddy, and nearly unbeatable likelihood of the game being rendered Unwinnable by sheer RNG.
  • Haunted Technology: There's a chance the safety poster in the East Hall will be replaced with one of four newspaper clippings. They detail the murder of five children whose bodies were never found, and how the animatronics resemble dead corpses and leak blood and mucus... yeah, doesn't exactly take a grade A detective to figure out the real reason the animatronics can move.
  • Here We Go Again!: After you complete the fifth night, you receive a check and a message that says "Good job, sport! (see you next week)". Thankfully, you get fired on the very last day of your week.
  • Hold the Line: The entire goal of the game is to survive from midnight to 6 AM, taking an entirely passive role against the robots.
  • Homicide Machines: The animatronics kill anyone they come across after dark.
  • Hope Spot: That silence when the light finally fizzles out to complete darkness after Freddy finishes his song, which seems to last forever. You'll either be greeted with the clock rolling over to 6 AM if you made it long enough… or Freddy's shrieking face rushing you.
  • I Know You're Watching Me: If you find one of the mascots, chances are it will be leering into the camera.
  • Impossible Task: For a while, the 7th night (Custom Night) was thought to be impossible with every AI set to 20, due to the amount of luck and skill involved.
    • Finally, on August 18th, Twitch streamer Bigbugz managed to clear the seventh night on a 4/20 run, proving the task is indeed possible, if extremely difficult.
    • It took Markiplier seven hours to do so, but he managed it as well, proving that Bigbugz's run wasn't just a fluke.
    • This guy did it too, with a fantastic reaction to being fired.
  • Increasingly Lethal Enemy: Done sneakily by the game — throughout the night, the AI levels of Bonnie, Chica, and Foxy will periodically increase, making them more active over time. This can be first seen in the very first night, where all the animatronics start out entirely dormant, but Bonnie and Chica will eventually wander off the stage when you're not looking.
  • Instant-Win Condition: As long as you reach 6 AM, you win — even if Freddy is staring right at you, just finishing up his song after you reach zero power. Waiting until 5 AM and then stalling can actually let you survive sometimes… if he feels like playing the full song before killing you, anyway.
  • In the End, You Are on Your Own: For the first four nights, Phone Guy provides helpful advice, and being the only other human in the game (even if it is just pre-recorded tapes), he's the closest thing you have to a companion. However, Night 4 is the last of his tapes, as he was caught by the animatronics and killed, and his tape in Night 5 is just a garbled mess of robotic sounds, leaving you truly alone against Freddy and his friends for the following three nights.
  • Interface Screw:
  • Irony:
    • According to the paycheck you get on Night 6 (which is the hardest night to complete unless you up the ante on Night 7 with the Level Editor), the date is November 13. Although the date is an unfortunate number, November 13 is World Kindness Day.
    • For a pizzeria managed by people who go out and beyond to clean all physical traces of gore in the building, you'd think they'd give the costumes said treatment since they smell like corpses and leak bodily fluids.
  • Jump Scare: Very effectively used. Rather than as a replacement for actual atmosphere, they're used to complement the atmosphere. The jump scares, as they're unpleasant, cause the player to play the game in constant terror and paranoia of them. The atmosphere and danger of the animatronics is greatly enhanced knowing that at any minute, this game could actually "hurt" you should you fail. Rather than mistaking "startling" for "scaring", this game makes you scared of being startled. Examples of where they're used:
    • If you turn on the lights in the hallway when there's a mascot there, you're treated with a Scare Chord.
    • Every time you lose. The animal that got you pops up and screams directly in your face, with an ear-piercing "SCCCRRREEEEEEEE". This is especially jarring if they sneak into the room while you're looking into the camera. You think you're safe, but even if you close the doors, it's too late…
    • Even worse with Foxy, as he is the fastest and pretty much bum-rushes right for you if you don't keep an eye out. This can even happen if you listen to the opening message each night after the second without viewing the camera.
    • And then there's Golden Freddy, who will appear if both of your doors are closed and you view a strange poster through the monitor.
    • Perhaps worst of all is Freddy himself sneaking into the Office. Unlike the other animatronics, Freddy does not just roar in your face. He outright pounces on the player out of the blue, and sports those soulless Black Eyes of Evil in the process. With no warning of his imminent attack beyond his evil laugh and the right Office door being open at just the wrong time.
  • Just Eat Gilligan:
    • Subverted. According to the former employee leaving you voice mail messages, the killer animatrons in the game will attack you because they don't know what humans are — they think you're an animatronic endoskeleton without your costume, and will try to force a costume onto you, killing you in the process. At one point, he suggests the obvious answer of playing dead, so they think you're an empty costume instead. He quickly thinks better of it, saying that if they think you're an empty costume, they'll try to shove a metal endoskeleton inside you, which would be even worse (for the record, there's no 'play dead' option, and playing dead by not moving at all doesn't do anything).
    • For that matter, though, if the animatrons are trying to get you because they think you're an endoskeleton without your costume, why not just make a fake costume and wear it to trick them? Interestingly, this actually is your primary defense mechanism in the second game. It doesn't work on all of the animatronics, though.
  • Just Ignore It: This is how you deal with Golden Freddy — simply pull up the monitor, and it will disappear.
  • Last Stand: This game is this for the original Freddy Fazbear's Pizza. With the second and fourth game being prequels, the fifth game being run by a different company entirely, the third game taking place 30 years after the pizzeria closed permanently, the Freddy Fazbear's location in the sixth game being an elaborate facade to lure the remaining animatronics together for their ultimate destruction, the seventh game being a VR game in-universe, the eighth game being a delivery service in-universe, and the ninth game being a mall, this is the final official incarnation of Freddy Fazbear's Pizza, as far as we know.
  • Level Editor: Unlocked upon completing the normal five nights and the sixth night. Instead of allowing you to create your own Suck E. Cheese's map, it allows you to edit the AI of the animals to your liking.
  • Lights Off, Somebody Dies: The somebody in question being you, after you've run out of power. Most of the lights go out, Freddy appears at the left door with only his eyes illuminated, and plays an Ominous Music Box Tune before the screen goes completely black. If you're lucky, he'll take his sweet time and the clock will tick over to 6 AM. If not, he'll Jump Scare you.
  • Luck-Based Mission: The game features a number of obtuse random mechanics to keep players on their toes.
    • Freddy first moves on Night 3 at the minimum difficulty level. On Night 4, there is a 50% chance that his A.I. will increase to 2, and it's the only instance in which this can happen.
    • The game rolls the dice on whether the animatronics can move or not every so often. If the result is lower than their A.I. level, they move. So at max difficulty they will move every time except in the case of Foxy, who gets stuck for a random time while the camera is on at all, and Freddy, who likewise slows down while being observed. Once Freddy does get into the office, there's actually only a 25% chance of him jumping the player on every second.
    • Once the player runs out of power, three phases of number rolls every couple seconds will determine how long it takes for Freddy to show up on the left, play his music box and then jumpscare the player.
  • Mascot Villain: The titular character, like the other animatronics in the game, is trying to kill you because it's malfunctioning… or at least that's what the company thinks. He's also an In-Universe example because he is also the mascot of the abandoned Suck E. Cheese's that serves as the setting.
  • Maybe Magic, Maybe Mundane: The game at first makes it seem like you're just trying to survive malfunctioning killer robots. However, The Reveal, the backmasked message on Night 5, and several seemingly random events (IE: Golden Freddy, the "IT'S ME!" message, blood and mucus oozing out of the animatronics) strongly imply that something much more sinister is going on. It turns out that they are haunted by dead kids.
  • Mook Chivalry: Comes into full effect once the power goes out. It doesn't matter if Foxy is already on his way while Chica and Bonnie are breathing down your neck, they'll all stand back and let Freddy do his thing. Even if Freddy is already in your office, he'll forgo jumping you immediately in favor of his usual theatrics.
  • More Teeth than the Osmond Family: The animatronics have 2 sets of teeth, the outer ones that are part of their costume, and another which is part of their robotic skeleton.
  • Mundane Made Awesome: This game is basically extreme "Red Light, Green Light".
  • Murder Into Malevolence: It's implied and later confirmed that the animatronics are haunted by the ghosts of murdered children, and one of the possible reasons they're targeting the player is that they can't tell the difference between their killer and Mike Schmidt. A future game implies that this may be because Mike is actually the son of their killer.

  • Nested Mouths: The animatronics add to their overall creepiness by having these inside the external mouths of the animal suits, complete with their own sets of teeth. It's most apparent in Chica, whose suit jaw hangs perpetually open, showing the second pair of gnashers at all times.
  • Never Found the Body:
    • Whenever there's a death on Fazbear Entertainment property, the company's standard response is to clean up the mess before reporting whoever just got killed as a "missing person", thus shielding themselves from legal liability.
    • The newspaper clippings that occasionally appear in the East Hall camera state that the bodies of the children that were lured into the back rooms of the restaurant were never found.
  • Nightmare Face: Aside from a robot screaming in your face, more unlucky players are likely to catch particularly creepy sights. Like a special Bonnie face, the Freddy-with-realistic-eyes hallucinations, or the sight of Freddy himself staring at the camera with glowing eyes right outside your station.
  • Nintendo Hard: The game's main source of excitement and horror is just how hard it is. It's very easy to run out of power, and it forces the player to learn the various mechanics of the game extremely quickly.
  • No Ending: After withstanding Freddy's unfiltered Nightmare Fuel for five nights, you get a comparatively minuscule check and a note from your boss that implies you'll come in again next week. Granted, there is a sixth night you can unlock, but it merely results in a slightly higher check and some overtime pay. That unlocks the Custom AI night seven, after which you're fired… which is easily the best thing that could happen.
  • Nonindicative Name: "Haunted Suck E. Cheese's" probably wasn't the first thing to come to mind when one heard the title, though it does make sense in context.
  • Non Standard Game Over:
    • Freddy is the only animatronic with two kill screens. The first comes when he enters the office during normal play. The second is when the power runs out.
    • Golden Freddy appears in your office if you look at the poster at the end of the West Hall while it's displaying his mugshot. If you don't pull up the monitor and switch to a different camera within several seconds, you will be treated to robotic murmurs and hallucinations just before he kills you and crashes the game.
  • Noodle Incident: Turned horrific with the Bite of '87, an event that resulted in the animatronics not being allowed to wander during the day anymore.
    Phone Guy: It's amazing that the human body can live without the frontal lobe, y'know?
  • No OSHA Compliance:
    • The managers of the pizza joint decide that it's cheaper to supply a night watchman with limited power than it is to safely contain the mannequins, leading to the plot of the game.
    • When the power goes out, the powered doors don't simply stop working, they actually open themselves. Then again, in any other situation, when the power goes out, you'd want a way out of the room.
  • Obvious Rule Patch: Bonnie and Chica only attack when you lower your camera, leading to the obvious solution of simply never bringing up the camera at all. To counter this, Foxy forces you to bring up the camera to prevent him from rushing you, which also gives Bonnie and Chica the opportunity to attack.
  • Offscreen Teleportation: The robotic animals all use this, only moving when you're not looking at the camera feeds. Except for Foxy, who you can see run down the West Hall towards your office if you let him escape the Pirate Cove room.
  • Playing Possum: The previous night shift guard suggests doing this as a last resort to fool the animatronics into thinking you are simply an empty costume, but admits it would probably be a bad idea. It does nothing.
  • Press Start to Game Over:
    • If you set the numbers to 1987 on the custom night, all you get is a Golden Freddy-caused game crash.
    • This can also happen in 4/20 mode if Freddy's feeling particularly unmerciful- he'll show up in your office and jumpscare you immediately after you start.
  • Public Domain Soundtrack: You might recognize that nice little jingle that plays during the 30 seconds between losing power and Freddy killing you. It's actually Les Toreadors, by Georges Bizet.
  • Punch-Clock Hero: Mike Schmidt (the player character) and Phone Guy can both be counted as this, seeing as the entire reason they're in the pizzeria that has homicidal, haunted animatronics running around at night and have to develop genuinely badass-level reflexes to survive is because it's literally a job they got out of the newspaper.
  • Punch-Clock Villain: The animatronics can be practically strangling you to death by shift's end, but if you survive to 6AM, they apparently let you go and let you leave the building unmolested. The player character seems to just count his blessings and leave only to come back the next night. Phone Guy says the animatronics aren't able to free roam during the day, not since the Bite of '87 happened anyway. Presumably, 6AM is when this daytime programming mode activates, causing them to change their behavior and leave the player alone.
  • Random Event: Whether it's truly random or requires well-hidden triggers, all sorts of strange or unexpected things may happen that aren't a part of the robots' patterns.
    • The sign in Pirate Cove will sometimes change from "Out of Order!" to "IT'S ME".
    • The Freddy, Bonnie, and Chica posters in the East Hall can sometimes change into posters of crying children or disappear entirely, with "IT'S ME" painted on the wall.
    • Golden Freddy is technically an easter egg. It's entirely up to luck whether the Freddy poster in the West Hall Corner will change into Golden Freddy's or the one where Freddy decapitates himself.
    • The visual hallucinations, consisting of Freddy with realistic eyes and, again, "IT'S ME". Cue robotic murmurs in the background. While it mostly happens randomly, it is always triggered whenever you summon Golden Freddy into the office.
    • On a very rare occasion, the static upon death and the game over screen will be replaced with a dead-still and soundless image of an eyeless, shadowed Bonnie, before light slowly fades into its eyes and the game returns to the main menu.
    • The poster showing the rules of the restaurant in the East Hall Corner may change as well. This poster is changed into one of four documents, all of which highlight the game's backstory.
    • Freddy might turn to face you in the Show Stage after Bonnie and Chica have left. On an extremely rare occasion, all three of them will face you, like they did in the trailer.
    • Likewise, the animatronic parts in the Backstage might turn their faces to you once in a blue moon.
  • Realistic Diction Is Unrealistic: Averted entirely by Phone Guy during his recordings for the player, reinforcing the feeling of immersion. He stutters, hesitates, stumbles over some words, repeats himself, goes silent as if to think, trails off during sentences, offers random interjections of "Okay?", says "um" and "uh" quite a bit, and in general really does sound like some guy who's just recording a message off the top of his head without a script. This is reinforced even further; when he dictates the company message to Mike, there are no mistakes, hinting that he's reading off a piece of paper.
  • Reality Is Unrealistic: Many have complained that it makes no sense why the doors fly open when the power goes out. Mechanisms are always designed such that — when they fail — they fail in the safest way possible. Assuming the doors' designer doesn't know the doors are keeping out killer robots, they would design the doors to open in a power outage so nobody gets trapped inside the office indefinitely. Specifically, the doors in the game appear to be armored security doors, which seem to be sealed electromagnetically. Electromagnetic doors are a common occurrence in many higher security locations, and for the safety reasons stated above, they will not remain locked if the power flowing to the locks is cut.
  • Red Herring: Phone Guy advising you to "play dead." Despite rumors, it has no effect on the gameplay.
  • Resources Management Gameplay: You have a finite amount of power each night that can be used for operating cameras/doors/lights. If you run out and you're not extremely close to the end of the night, you die.
  • Retirony: Phone Guy tells you on night 1 that he's finishing up his last week as he records his messages for you. He doesn't make it past night 4.
  • Roar Before Beating: All of the animatronics will shriek in your face if you let them into your office.
  • Robo Speak: The Night 5 message and some inaudible dialogue from Bonnie and Chica when they are outside your room are this.

  • Sanity Meter: While lacking an actual meter, the protagonist can still suffer from Eternal Darkness-style hallucinations, anything from cosmetic changes to a brief Interface Screw to Golden Freddy attacks, and it happens more and more often as the week drags on.
  • Saved by the Church Bell: Most levels end when the clock strikes 6:00 and a bell can be heard ringing eight times. Given the Paranoia Fuel of being hunted down by mangled jumpscaring animatronics and the limited battery power, that sound is synonymous with safety for most players and probably the most wonderful sound they'll hear all game.
  • Scare Chord: It plays if you hit a light switch, with an open door, while one of the robots is right outside.
  • Scary Teeth: The robots all have creepy teeth, but Foxy gets special mention for having sharp teeth and a broken jaw and Chica for having her endoskeleton's teeth visible in certain shots.
  • Schmuck Bait: Following the steps to the popular 1987 AI setting myth simply leads to the Golden Freddy death as of the Steam release.
  • Sir Not-Appearing-in-This-Trailer: Foxy doesn't appear at all in the majority of the game's promotional material. This means that unless you do a poor job of checking the cameras on the first night and get unlucky, you're left believing there are only three animatronics to look after until the second night's phone call. And even then, you've got absolutely no indicator that there is a Golden Freddy lurking about.
  • SkeleBot 9000: The endoskeletons.
  • Soundtrack Dissonance: If you run out of power, Freddy plays a happy music box tune right before murdering you.
  • Stalked by the Bell: If you spend too much time not checking the cameras, Foxy will rush to your office and kill you. This is to prevent players from trying to avoid a Jump Scare by Bonnie and Chica, who only attack after you put your monitor down once they get in the office. In later nights, Freddy can also get into your office and immediately kill you.
  • Stealth Pun: As noted in the trivia section, the distorted messages on the Night 5 phone call translate to lines from Autobiography of a Yogi. Said distorted quotes are coming from a cartoon bear.
  • Story Breadcrumbs: The game's backstory can only be found on the hidden newspaper clippings that may randomly appear in the game (or by reading the wiki).
  • Suck E. Cheese's: The game takes place at Freddy Fazbear's Pizza, where the management is incompetent, corners are cut, employees are paid minimum wage, the animatronics are out to kill you, and children were killed. The place is set to close within two months after many incidents in previous locations; chiefly, the mentioned dead children.
  • Super-Persistent Predator: The robots, especially Freddy himself, who makes a beeline for the office on later nights and never, ever leaves once he's reached the right hallway.
  • Super-Powered Robot Meter Maids: These are robots designed entirely for singing on a stage, and yet are capable of lifting a grown man and restraining them long enough to force a suit onto them. Hell, just moving around and running in general. Usually these things have cables, and there is no reason for them to be in the security room, or restrooms, let alone bolting to the former in two seconds in Foxy's case.
  • Surprisingly Realistic Outcome: The backstory of Freddy's reveals that the horrific, uncontrollable behavior of the robots and the seedy history of the joint have basically bankrupted it. The restaurant is going to close down by the end of the year.
  • Tactical Door Use: Your sole concrete defense is to close the doors of your office. Since the ideal solution to the problem of "killer animatronics trying to get to you" is keeping both doors closed at all games, the building has a limited amount of power to ensure that anyone who tries doing so will inevitably be killed by Freddy when the power gets fully drained before the night is anywhere near over.
  • This Is Gonna Suck: If the power runs out, there's nothing left to do except wait in the dark for Freddy to kill you or hope 6 AM arrives quickly. Unless you're already at 5 AM when the power runs out, the latter option isn't happening.
  • Three Laws-Compliant: The animatronics are anything but this.
  • Undercrank: Starting on Night 4, if you look at the animatronics for more than 5 seconds, their heads start twitching uncontrollably, and they constantly twitch on Night 5.
  • Unnecessarily Creepy Robot: Since it's a horror game where they're the antagonists, the animatronics' design only emphasizes their artificial nature, beyond that of their real-world equivalents. Their joints and seams are all too obvious, their costume-over-endoskeleton design makes their eyes poorly fitted and their internal mouths visible, and in Foxy's case, his damage highlights his nature further. Why Fazbear Entertainment thinks this is a suitable child-friendly design is hard to understand (besides a low budget), though the animatronics are only hostile to adults and seem to be popular enough with the kids.
  • Unreliable Expositor: While Phone Guy is your best source of information about what's going on because he used to have the player character's job, his information isn't entirely reliable because he doesn't have all the facts and is actively trying to downplay how much danger you're in.
  • Unwinnable by Design:
    • The door and light on one side of the room can lock up and be rendered unusable. Since there's no way to fix this, unless your shift is almost over and lady luck is feeling really merciful, you're pretty much screwed. This typically happens when you've screwed up and let one of the animatronics sneak into your room when you weren't looking.
    • Once the power has been depleted too far too early in the night, not even the most skilled player will be able to reach 6 AM before the power goes out and Freddy kills them.
  • Vicious Cycle: As described by Smosh Games' Honest Game Trailers show, "the more scared you get, the more you look for monsters, and the more you look for monsters, the less power you have, which makes you more scared, which makes you look for more monsters, and so on until it finally ends in a Jump Scare that makes you scream. Even though you totally know it's coming."
  • Violation of Common Sense: Dealing with Golden Freddy requires you immediately do something that will get you killed if you're threatened by another animatronic- looking at the monitor. While this will cause all the other animatronics to attack you, Golden Freddy will just disappear.
  • Walking Spoiler: The Killer mentioned in the backstory, revealed in later games to be named William Afton.
  • Westminster Chimes: These sound to signal that you've made it to 6 AM. Yaaaaaaay!
  • Who Watches the Watchmen?: The official job description claims that you're protecting these things.
  • Willing Suspension of Disbelief: Even in a horror setting, this scenario doesn't make a whole lot of sense.
  • Working-Class Hero: The player character is braving the security job from hell just to make a living, perhaps desperately so. Despite being in life threatening situations on a nightly basis and apparently being paid less than minimum wage,note  they refuse to reenter the job market again for some unexplained reason.
  • A Winner Is You: When you beat the game, :all you get for your efforts is a screenshot of a check for the laughably small amount of $120, with the words "Good job, sport! (See you next week)" above it, while Freddy's tune plays in the background. Complete the Night 6 Bonus Level, and you get a check for $120.50. Complete Night 7, and you get a notice of termination for tampering with the animatronics, general unprofesionnallism and odor.
  • Year X: The game takes place on November of the year XX, according to the paychecks you receive at the end of Nights 5 and 6.

Good job, sport! (see you next week)


Video Example(s):


Five Nights at Freddy's

Should the player survive the night at Freddy Fazbear's Pizza up until 6 AM, the Westminster Chimes would immediately play to signal the end of their terrifying shift.

How well does it match the trope?

5 (23 votes)

Example of:

Main / WestminsterChimes

Media sources: