Sora Ltd. (有限会社ソラ, Sora Company Limited) is a Japanese video game developer founded by former HAL Laboratory employee Masahiro Sakurai. It was formed in the years following Sakurai's resignation from his position at HAL Laboratory. Although it is considered a video game developer, it is merely used by Sakurai to conduct business with other companies, and therefore outsources development on its games to other developers. Its only employees are Sakurai and his wife, Michiko.
Sora Ltd.'s first game was Meteos, a puzzle game for the Nintendo DS that Sakurai directed while Q Entertainment was the primary developer. Their next game was Super Smash Bros. Brawl. Like Meteos, Sakurai directed the project, but most of the development was handled by Game Arts and Monolith Soft.
For a while, Sakurai ran Project Sora, a joint venture between Sora Ltd. and Nintendo, which was started in January 2009. An important distinction between Sora Ltd. and Project Sora is that the former is not officially affiliated with Nintendo; Project Sora allowed Sakurai to use Nintendo's resources for game development. It only developed Kid Icarus: Uprising for the Nintendo 3DS before officially closing on June 30, 2012.
Sora Ltd.'s next game, Super Smash Bros. 4, co-developed by Bandai Namco, was released for the Nintendo 3DS under the name Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS in Japan on September 13, 2014, and on October 3, 2014 in North America and Europe, as well as releasing on the Wii U under the name Super Smash Bros. for Wii U on December 6, 2014 in Japan, on November 21, 2014 in North America, and on November 28, 2014 in Europe.
Sora Ltd. and Sakurai returned as developer alongside Bandai Namco. Pit returns from Brawl, along with the debut of Dark Pit and Palutena. All of them are based on their appearances in Kid Icarus: Uprising, which Sora Ltd. developed. Magnus and Phosphora debut as Assist Trophies. Reaper and Souflee appear in Smash Run and Smash Tour. Several items from Uprising debut in this game, with a majority also appearing in Smash Tour. Viridi appears as a background character and a DLC Mii Costume. 11 music tracks and numerous trophies based on elements from Uprising appear.
Reset Bomb Forest debuts on 3DS. Several enemies from Uprising appear exclusively on Smash Run. Several trophies appear exclusively on 3DS.
Sora Ltd and Sakurai returned as developer alongside Bandai Namco. Pit, Dark Pit and Palutena return, again based on their appearances in Uprising. Reset Bomb Forest and Palutena's Temple return as stages. All items from Smash 4 return along with the debut of Staff. Phosphora returns as an assist trophy. The Viridi Mii Costume returns. 9 new and old music and numerous spirits based on Uprising appear.