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Archangel Studios, the three-person team behind the Soulslike game Bleak Faith, have been accused of reusing assets ripped from Elden Ring. The action game released on March 10, 2023, for PC on Steam, and soon after, some players started saying they recognized more than one animation from FromSoftware’s award-winning RPG (thanks, PC Gamer).

The accusations began on 4Chan and spread to Steam, before moving onto Discord and Twitter. One user compiled a collection of the allegedly swiped animations on Imgur, along with an enemy – the Abyss Watcher – from Dark Souls 3 that they believe is nearly identical to an enemy in Bleak Faith. Others include movement and attack animations that seem to resemble Malenia’s, the notoriously difficult boss from Elden Ring.

The Steam thread began as an angry rant from a user disgruntled over Archangel’s so-called “woke” comments on Discord, and the thread devolved in pretty much the way you’d expect from there. However, Archangel still addressed the accusations, saying roughly 10 percent of Bleak Faith’s assets and animations come from the Epic Marketplace, which sells a variety of pre-built tools for developers using Unity.

“Any animations not made in-house are from the Epic Marketplace and have been up there for years, rigged to an Epic Skeleton,” one team member, who goes by Roia on Steam, said. “We've heard this comment before, but you can buy the animations yourself if you want as they are publicly available and have been for a long time. Any other question or concern [sic] should be taken up with Epic themselves." 

"We're willing to rework things if there's something amiss going on in the marketplace but we've received no notification from Epic and we too are their customers.”

Archangel also linked to the user who sells the animations they implemented in Bleak Faith. The Epic marketplace has strict copyright guidelines, though how closely Epic monitors or vets submissions is unclear.

A Valve moderator locked the Steam thread after saying the conversation was going nowhere, but the conversation continued on Discord, where another Archangel team member said they raised a ticket with Epic outlining the community’s concerns “as a sign of good faith.”

Archangel also faced backlash over using AI-generated art for some of the game’s icons, though said on Twitter that they were working on new icons. The studio didn’t acknowledge any similarities between Elden Ring and Bleak Faith, nor did they say any changes are in the works for the animations in question.