FromSoftware games, such as Elden Ring, Sekiro, and the Dark Souls trilogy, are known for their dark and challenging gameplay. However, the games also have moments of unexpected humor that arise from the grim and intense atmosphere. The creative director of these games, Hidetaka Miyazaki, has stated that while some areas are intentionally designed to be funny, many parts of the games that come from a serious and dark place are often misconstrued as humorous. This unintentional humor adds another layer to the player’s experience, creating a unique blend of emotions while playing.

Miyazaki explains that the perceived humor in FromSoftware games is not a deliberate decision but rather a result of how players interpret the challenges presented to them. For example, facing a difficult boss multiple times can lead to moments of laughter out of frustration or disbelief. The environment in which players immerse themselves while playing also plays a role in how certain situations are perceived. The tension and pressure of a boss battle can sometimes be so overwhelming that laughter becomes a coping mechanism for players to release the built-up stress.

The unintentional dark comedy present in FromSoftware games can be compared to the phenomena of happy-crying or nervous laughter. Our bodies often try to regulate intense emotions by producing an opposite and equally intense feeling. In the case of these games, the grueling difficulty and unforgiving nature of the gameplay can lead to moments of humor as a way for players to cope with the challenges they face. Miyazaki acknowledges that much of the humor in the games is not intentional but rather a natural response to the player’s experience within the game world.

Looking ahead, Miyazaki has revealed details about Elden Ring’s upcoming DLC, Shadow of the Erdtree, describing it as the studio’s largest expansion yet. Despite the dark and challenging nature of FromSoftware games, the team behind these titles continues to push boundaries and deliver exceptional experiences for players. Miyazaki credits the studio’s ability to create great games consistently to empowering and retaining talented individuals who share a passion for creating unique and engaging gameplay experiences.

The unintentional dark comedy found in FromSoftware games adds depth and complexity to the player’s experience. While the games may be known for their challenging difficulty and dark themes, moments of unexpected humor provide a welcome contrast and allow players to navigate the intense gameplay with some laughter along the way. Through player interpretation, environmental influence, and emotional regulation, FromSoftware games offer a unique blend of emotions that make them stand out in the world of gaming.


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