Throne of Darkness is a Japanese-themed action-oriented role-playing video game released in 2001 by Sierra Entertainment, a subsidiary of Vivendi Universal. Players control up to four (out of seven) different samurai at a time. The game has three separate multiplayer modes which support up to 35 players.
The game is set in Yamato, a medieval version of Japan ruled by the shogun Tsunayoshi and the daimyōs of the four clans. To become immortal, Tsunayoshi transforms himself into the demon Zanshin, the Dark Warlord, who unleashes his army of darkness to conquer Yamato. Zanshin's forces sweep across Yamato one night, catching the clans by surprise and annihilating them. However, believing that the four daimyōs were killed, Zanshin recalls his soldiers prematurely, leaving one daimyō and seven of his retainers alive. As dawn breaks, the daimyō decides to counterattack, ordering his seven surviving samurai to destroy Zanshin and his minions.
The four clans and daimyōs are named after historical Japanese clans and persons:
- The Mōri clan, led by daimyō Mōri Motonari.
- The Oda clan, led by daimyō Oda Nobunaga.
- The Tokugawa clan, led by daimyō Tokugawa Ieyasu.
- The Toyotomi clan, led by daimyō Toyotomi Hideyoshi.
Gameplay resembles Diablo II, as many of the game's developers worked on Diablo.