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Splinter Cell: Adjective Noun

Sequels have a tendency to be burdened with bizarre subtitles or inconsistent naming.

This is sometimes to distance it from more conventionally Numbered Sequels of low quality, but just as often seems to be applied at random.

A subset of the trope is when later installments drop the affix of earlier installments, commonly creating the illusion that a series is smaller than it really is. The reverse of this is, of course, when earlier installments are retroactively renamed to better fit in with their descendants.

Adding multiple subtitles is likely to cause Colon Cancer. When it is added in translations, it is called The Foreign Subtitle. May overlap with Numbered Sequels. Combining Colon Cancer and Numbered Sequels can lead to Capcom Sequel Stagnation.

When a bizarre phrase is the title, see Word Salad Title. For more literal subtitles, see In Which a Trope Is Described. For awe-inspiring subtitles, see Mad Lib Fantasy Title. For odd title changes in an ongoing series, see New Season, New Name.

See also Stock Subtitle.

And just in case you're wondering: Boogaloo.

Examples of Oddly-Named Sequel 2: Electric Boogaloo include:

Trope Namer

  • The trope is named for the movie Breakin' 2: Electric Boogaloo (link is courtesy of That Other Wiki) [1]. The subtitle struck many as hilarious (incidentally, the "electric boogaloo" is an actual style of dance), and since then, "Electric Boogaloo" has been used as a spoof subtitle for a sequel to just about anything, especially a sequel perceived or expected to be of inferior quality, or sequels with unwieldy subtitles.
    • The second Mystery Science Theater 3000 fan convention was called "Conventio-Con Expo-Fest-A-Rama 2: Electric Boogaloo".
    • Fans were deeply, deeply saddened when no amount of letter writing could convince Michael Bay to name his sequel Transformers 2: Electric Boogaloo.
    • In an episode of the Clerks animated series, Randall described Dante's relationship as "Caitlin and Dante 2: Electric Boogaloo."
    • In an episode of Teen Girl Squad, Strong Bad was about to kill The Ugly One with "Arrowed 2: Electric Boogaloo" before realizing he had drawn her hot.
    • Also referenced inYu-Gi-Oh! GX of all things, when Chazz plays "Beatron 2: Electric Bugaloo, uhhh, what I meant was Beetle Turbo".
    • Used by Kevin Bishop on his Channel 4 sketch show, when spoofing unnecessary sequels: "Shindler's List 2: Electric Boogaloo"
    • One of the tutorials in Badman 2 is titled "Demons 2: Electric Boogaloo".
    • The English adaptation of the Pokémon manga The Electric Tale of Pikachu that roughly follows the plot of the TV show's second volume was Electric Pikachu Boogaloo.
    • In an episode of Mr. Show, a director is described as "the best thing to come out of Hollywood since sliced bread, not to mention its sequel, Sliced Bread II: Electric Boogaloo."
    • Clone High's second episode is titled "Episode Two: Election Blu-Galoo".
    • The Great Luke Ski has a song about bacon, titled “Bacon”. Devo Spice wrote a parody about Kevin Bacon, titled “Bacon 2: Electric Boogaloo”.
    • An episode of Phineas and Ferb parodies this with the title "Phineas and Ferb's Quantum Boogaloo". It was the second episode to feature time travel. It was also the second episode to feature Phineas and Ferb's giant roller coaster. For the record, the original title the creators wanted to go with was "Time Machine 2: Quantum Boogaloo".
    • Parodied once again in Calvin and Hobbes The Series; the In-Universe sequel to The Incredible Hulk has this subtitle.

Anime & Manga

  • The clearest example is Mobile Suit Gundam, which begat a whole host of series and Alternate Universes, many of which are distinguished by letters, years, or combinations of one or both: Zeta (Z) Gundam, Gundam ZZ, Gundam 0080, Mobile Suit Gundam F91, Mobile Suit Gundam 0083: Stardust Memory, Victory (V) Gundam, G Gundam, Gundam Wing (W), After War Gundam X, Turn a Gundam, Gundam SEED and its spinoffs, Gundam 00, and Gundam Unicorn.
    • Strictly speaking, only Z and ZZ are really sequels. The rest are either UC spinoffs (08th MS team, War in the Pocket, 0083, F91); or other universes (G Gundam, Gundam W, SEED, and so on). Turn A is somewhat of a crossover series, but I'd toss it in the 'other' bin too since it isn't strictly UC.
      • It's worth noting that in many cases, the series are named for the latest variant of the eponymous Mobile Suit.
  • Full Metal Panic was followed by Full Metal Panic? Fumoffu, which in turn was followed by Full Metal Panic! The Second Raid, making it the third series, not the second. (On the other hand, Fumoffu was more of a side story anthology than a true second chapter.)
    • Following the manga reveals that the sidestories in "Fumoffu" should have taken place during the first season, interspersed with the more serious episodes, so it's not really a sequel at all.
  • Haré+Guu begat two OVA series, Haré+Guu DELUXE & Haré+Guu FINAL.
  • Saber Marionette J gave us Saber Marionette J Again and Saber Marionette J To X. The logical followup Saber Marionette X never made it to an Animated Adaptation, however. There was also a Saber Marionette R.
    • Some of the suffixes actually make sense. The "J" stands for Japoness, one of the six nations (yes, a clone of Medieval Japan) and the main theater in the first series. The "Again" is just an OVA follow-up. The X stands for "Xian", another nation (representing China), which plays some role in J-X, and the "R" stands for Romana (representing Italy), the center of the R series.
      • J to X can also refer to the X chromosome since this season deals a lot with the marionettes' desires to become human girls.
  • Slayers series 2, 3 and 4 were named NEXT, TRY, and REVOLUTION respectively. The fifth one is named EVOLUTION-R.
    • The movies are titled Slayers Perfect, Slayers Return, Slayers Great, Slayers Gorgeous, and Slayers Premium.
    • The OVA prequels are titled Slayers Excellent and Slayers Special
    • The novels are titled Slayers Special, Slayers Smash, Slayers Delicious, and Slayers VS Orphen
    • Tha manga are named Slayers Medieval Mayhem, Slayers Super-Explosive Demon Story, Slayers Special, Slayers Premium, Slayers Knight of the Aqualord, Slayers Revolution, Slayers Evolution-R and Slayers Legend
    • The radio dramas are named (Slayers Extra, Slayers N'extra, Slayers Premium, Slayers VS Orphen, and The Return of Slayers Ex)
    • The video games were Slayers Royal for Sega Saturn, Slayers Royal 2 for Sega Saturn and Play Station, Slayers Wonderful for PlayStation).
  • Weiss Kreuz does this in both original and dub. The series has two sequels, an OVA and a sequel series; in the original Japanese version, the OVA's two parts are titled Weiss Kreuz: Verbrechen ("crime") and Weiss Kreuz: Strafe ("punishment"), and the sequel series is Weiss Kreuz: Gluhen ("glowing" - in German, "weiss gluhen" or "weissgluhend" means "white-hot"). The series was dubbed as Knight Hunters, and although the OVA has not been licensed, Gluhen has been released in English as Knight Hunters: Eternity.
  • Yu-Gi-Oh spawned Yu-Gi-Oh GX. It is worth mentioning that while GX takes place some time after the first series, it has little in common with it aside from the card game and a few mostly unseen cameos from a few characters from the first series (such as Yugi and his grandfather, and Seto Kaiba). On the manga side, there is also Yu-Gi-Oh R, a side story taking place between Battle City and Millennium World.
    • To add confusion, the original name of the anime series known outside Japan as Yu-Gi-Oh! was originally titled Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Monsters in Japan, and was the semi-sequel to the unsuccessful anime Yu-Gi-Oh!, produced by an entirely different company and adapting the manga from the beginning up to the Pegasus arc. That series, which never made it to English-speaking shores, is referred to as "Season 0" by Western fans.
    • And then they followed GX with Yu-Gi-Oh 5 Ds.
  • The second series of the Ah! My Goddess TV Series was dubbed "Ah! My Goddess: Sorezore no Tsubasa" ("Many Wings"); the English subtitle is Flights of Fancy. The third OVA was subtitled Tatakau Tsubasa, or "Fighting Wings", and was never released outside of Japan.
  • The second series of Ai Yori Aoshi was "Ai Yori Aoshi: Enishi", enishi being the word for the bonds between people.
  • Mermaid Melody Pichi Pichi Pitch tacked on "Pure".
  • The various .hack installments have suffixed names as well; none of them are exempt from this, because the first few (tasogare no udewa densetsu, SIGN and the first games) ran at the same time, so there is no true "original".
  • The Mai-Otome OVA sequel was named Mai-Otome Zwei, the most obvious rationale for which is because "zwei" (German for two) starts with a Z, allowing the logo designers to superimpose it with the Z-like kanji (ä¹™) in the original title. An oddly named prequel has also been announced, alternatively titled Mai-Otome 0, S.ifl, or S.ifr ("sifr" being Arabic for zero).
    • In fact, Mai-Otome itself qualifies despite not strictly being a sequel, if the original Japanese titles for Mai-HiME and Mai-Otome are compared (舞-HiME and 舞-ä¹™HiME, respectively).
  • Likewise for the manga versions of Tenchi Muyo! and Shin Tenchi Muyo (New Tenchi Muyo), released in English as "All-New" Tenchi Muyo. This is not to be confused with the anime versions, which are Tenchi Muyo Ryo Ohki, Tenchi Muyo TV (or Tenchi Universe in the US) and a completely-unrelated-to-the-manga Shin Tenchi Muyo (which is Tenchi in Tokyo in the US).
  • The first season of Ranma ½ was technically a separate show from seasons two through seven which was called Ranma 1/2:Nett ôhen.
  • The Naruto anime after the time skip has the new name Naruto Shippuden (roughly translated: Hurricane Chronicles), even though there was no break between the original series in Japan and this one (as opposed to the manga where it was just Naruto: Part 2). Was mostly likely done to notify that the 85 Filler episodes were over.
  • The second half of the Sorcerer Hunters anime was initially released by ADV Films as "Spell Wars" and marketed as a separate sequel series; both halves were released as a single series on DVD.
  • Ojamajo Doremi was renewed four times, and the following seasons were called Ojamajo Doremi ♯ (Sharp), Mo~tto! Ojamajo Doremi, Ojamajo Doremi Dokkaan! and Ojamajo Doremi Naisho respectively.
  • The Minami-ke anime was followed by a sequel series called Minami-ke: Okawari (literally meaning "Seconds") immediately after. A third season, Minami-ke: Okaeri ("Returns"; it's what anime characters always shout when they come home) followed a year after that. Most recently, there was an OVA called Minami-ke: Betsubara ("second stomach", an idiom used for someone who can eat dessert even after a huge meal).
  • The Appleseed movie was followed up by Appleseed Ex Machina.
  • Sister Princess was later followed up by Sister Princess Repure.
  • Tokyo Mew Mew a la Mode where "a la mode" is supposedly used in the sense "with ice-cream" and refers to the signature color of the new team leader.
  • The manga Gensoumaden Saiyuki became Saiyuki Reload when it switched magazines; the anime also included this distinction, as the second anime series was produced quite some time after the first one ended, and the animation and artwork styles between the two are noticeably different. The anime then took this a step further, by producing the final season as Saiyuki Reload GUNLOCK. There's also the movie Saiyuki Requiem, and the OAV, Saiyuki Reload -burial-.
  • Sayonara, Zetsubou-sensei was quickly followed by a second season, with the full title (Zoku:) Sayonara Zetsubou Sensei, where Zoku is a dictionary term used to designate slang words and vulgarities, but is also a pun on the word for "continuation". Then there's the OVA, Goku: Sayonara Zetsubou Sensei, where Goku means "prison." And a third season, Zan this time.
    • In a similar vein, Natsume Yuuijincho earned a second season with Zoku tacked on to the beginning of its name as well.
  • Meine Liebe has a second season that goes by the name of wieder
    • "Meine Liebe wieder" just means "My love again" in German, so perhaps that's just a case of Gratuitous German.
  • The Pokémon anime is notable for the fact it gets a new subtitle every season starting with season 3 in the dub version. The original Japanese series has only changed its name, twice. Pocket Monsters added the subtitle Advanced Generation when it began the storyline based on the Pokémon games released for the Game Boy Advance. The subtitle then changed to Diamond & Pearl when the storyline became based on said games, although it adapted elements of Platinum and the DS remakes of the Gold and Silver games as well. The adaptation for Pokémon Black and White takes the cake, though, for being subtitled Best Wishes!.
    • The original Pocket Monsters was dubbed as Pokémon for two seasons, then was subtitled with The Johto Journeys, Johto League Champions and finally Master Quest, one season each.
    • The seasons based on Pocket Monsters Advanced Generation was subtitled Advanced, Advanced Challenge, Advanced Battle, and Battle Frontier
    • The seasons based on Pocket Monsters Diamond & Pearl is subtitled as Diamond and Pearl, Diamond and Pearl Battle Dimension, Diamond and Pearl Galactic Battles, and Diamond and Pearl Sinnoh League Victors
    • Currently, Pocket Monsters Best Wishes! is dubbed as Pokémon Black and White
  • Rosario to Vampire's second season is titled Rosario to Vampire Capu2, a play on the onomatopoeia "kapuchuu~".
  • The sequel seasons of {Manga/{ARIA}} are called The Natural and The Origination.
  • The second season of Futari wa Pretty Cure had MaX Heart tacked onto the end of the title. Similarly, Yes! Pretty Cure 5 continued with the rather punny Yes! Pretty Cure 5 GoGo.
  • Shugo Chara, on the other hand, went with Shugo Chara Doki. "Doki" is the Japanese word for a heartbeat sound.
    • Also, Shugo Chara Party
  • Zero no Tsukaima titled its follow-up seasons Knight of the Twin Moons and The Princess' Rondo. "Rondo" being a musical movement that repeats a key idea three times.
  • Hell Girl has two follow-up seasons, each with a title incorporating its number.
    • Season 2 is Hell Girl: Futakomori. This means something like "The Two Prisoners", but there's no consensus on which two are intended. They could be Ai and Kikuri, who are both used by the King of Hell; or they could be Ai's parents, whose souls are held hostage to keep Ai working; or they could be "the hater and the hated", a duality that's emphasized in the intro. We don't know.
    • Season 3 is Hell Girl: Mitsuganae, which means "Cauldron of Three". Wanyuudou explains this one for us halfway through. "Hatred, suffering, and envy: like legs of a cauldron, they say these become a support for people's hearts." (Kikuri protests, "They don't say that!")
  • The second and third Lupin III TV series were released in Japan as New Lupin III and Lupin III: Part III. Since the first series was never released anywhere else but Italy, when most people are talking about "Lupin III", they mean the second series. The US DVD release acknowledges that it's not the original series, even if the title cards don't.
    • The New Lupin III manga was released in English as Lupin III: World's Most Wanted, and was then promptly cancelled halfway through its run.
  • Shuffle and Shuffle Memories, though most fans discard Memories as a sequel because episodes 1-11 were merely thematic recaps of each character's relationship with Rin a la To Heart 2, with episode 12 being the only episode having original material.
  • Judging from the title, the Japanese name of the new reboot of Fullmetal Alchemist is Hagane no Renkinjutsushi: Fullmetal Alchemist. They used the English name for the first series as a subtitle for second one. Obviously this would make no sense in English, so it was christened Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood.
    • Which makes even less sense considering that the first anime Overtook the Manga and went off on its own tangent about 1/3rd of the way through, and yet carries the same name as the manga, whilst the sequel is based entirely from the manga storyline, but has a different name. Hmm...
  • The second season of Himawari! was differentiated from the first season with the addition of a second exclamation point.
  • Bakugan started out with the name Bakugan Battle Brawlers for two seasons, then followed it up with a third season called Bakugan: New Vestroia, then a fourth season called Bakugan: Gundalian Invaders and a fifth called Bakugan: Mechtanium Surge.
  • In Japan, the 1985 Vampire Hunter D film was known as Kyuuketsuki Hunter D. When they released a second film 15 years later, they simply titled it Vampire Hunter D in Japan. To avoid confusion, the second film was retitled Vampire Hunter D: Bloodlust for its English release.
    • In Japan, the 2nd film is referred to as Vampire Hunter D: The Movie, as it was released theatrically. The first Vampire Hunter D was an OVA.
  • The Galaxy Angel sequels are named in this order: Z, A, AA, S, X. Just try making sense of that. Not that the order you watch them in matters the slightest.
  • After the TV series ended, Future GPX Cyber Formula has four OVA sequels: 11 (pronounced "Double One" instead of "Eleven") Zero, Saga and Sin. For example, 11 refers to Asurada's upgrade to the even more powerful Super Asurada AKF-11 and the title for 2 consecutive championship wins, and Zero refers to the Super Mode.
  • Rebuild of Evangelion 1.0: You Are (Not) Alone and Evangelion 2.0: You Can (Not) Advance.
    • And in 2013, Evangelion 3.0: You Can (Not) Redo.
    • At the end of the DVD Commentary for The End of Evangelion, Taliesin Jaffe and Jason C. Lee joke about the (un)likelihood of Eva 2: Electric Boogaloo, which now that the Rebuild films and in particular the increasingly popular "sequel theory" exist is particularly Hilarious in Hindsight.
  • Although not another season, Tsubasa Chronicle had two sets of OAVs released. The first was titled Tsubasa TOKYO REVELATIONS, and the second was Tsubasa Shunraiki. Other than to differentiate them from the original animated series another production company had been given the rights to Tsubasa after CLAMP was displeased with Bee Train's work on the television series.
  • Super Dimension Fortress Macross was followed by Macross II. That was logical enough, but since the series' creators were not consulted with Macross II, to avoid accepting its existence the "official" sequels have followed this trope ever since: Macross Plus, Macross 7, Macross Zero, Macross Frontier. Yes, that's in order.
    • Macross Frontier is also something of an in universe example. The New Macross Class long range colony fleets are numbered at least up to eleven (this is where Macross 7 gets its title) but at some point after that they start naming them, hence the twenty-fifth fleet is the titular Macross Frontier Colony Fleet, rather than the Macross 25.
  • The Gate Keepers sequel series is named Gate Keepers 21. The story occurs in the 21st century as opposed to the main story, which occurred during 1969.
  • The second season of Hidamari Sketch is "Hidamari Sketch x365" (pronounced "san-roku-go" or "three-six-five". The third season is "Hidamari Sketch x***" (pronounced "hoshimittsu" or "three stars").
  • Jojo's Bizarre Adventure's story is split into several parts, with each one given a very Electric Boogaloo-ish title. Starting from the beginning we have: Phantom Blood, Battle Tendency, Stardust Crusaders, Diamond is Unbreakable, Vento Aureo, Stone Ocean, Steel Ball Run, and Jojolion.
  • Sailor Moon: Seasons 2 through 5 are titled Sailor Moon R (nobody can agree what this stands for the popular choices are either 'Romance' or 'Returns'), Sailor Moon S (Super), Sailor Moon SuperS (i.e. nultiple supers), and Sailor Moon Sailor Stars. Also it's not official but many fans call the original series Sailor Moon Classic.
  • Vampire Knight, and its second season, Vampire Knight Guilty.
  • The second season of Yuru-Yuri will be named YuruYuri♪♪
  • Clannad's second season is called CLANNAD ~After Story~ (tildes mandatory).

Card Games

  • Magic: The Gathering publishes "Core Sets," collections which provide a foundation of basic cards for players to build off of. These Core Sets were called "Limited," "Unlimited" (which went out of print relatively quickly), "Revised," then switched to numbers (4th Edition - 10th Edition), and then switched to model years ('10, '11, etc). Just to add to the confusion, there is both a 10th edition and a Magic 2010 (though at least one uses the Roman numeral X as its symbol, the other a stylized "M10" icon).

Comic Books

  • The Eyeball Kid miniseries by Eddie Campbell was later subsumed into its spin-off, Bacchus.
  • The miniseries Kev was followed by More Kev, The Magnificent Kevin and, finally, A Man Named Kev.
  • The Dark Knight Returns was followed up years later with The Dark Knight Strikes Back Again.
  • The earliest Tintin albums went: Tintin in the Land of the Soviets, Tintin in the Congo, Tintin in America and... Cigars of the Pharaoh. From that point on, though, the "Tintin in Geographic Location" formula was discarded for many years until Tintin in Tibet.


Films — Animated

  • Any Pokémon movie! Except the 3rd and 4th.
  • The sequel to A Goofy Movie was called An Extremely Goofy Movie.
  • The An American Tail sequels did this. An American Tail: Fievel Goes West wasn't such a bad title, the later direct-to-video titles became just a little too long; An American Tail: The Treasure of Manhattan Island and An American Tail: The Mystery of the Night Monster.

Films — Live-Action

  • The Rambo series: First Blood, Rambo: First Blood Part II, Rambo III, and Rambo. Yes, in that order. In Brazil, the second film is called Rambo II - A Missão. Since then, "A Missão" ("The Mission") has become the Brazilian equivalent of "Electric Boogaloo."
  • The first five Rocky sequels are numbered. The sixth is simply titled Rocky Balboa.
  • Alien, Aliens, Alien3[1], and Alien Resurrection.
  • The Terminator was followed by rather plain Terminator 2: Judgment Day and Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines. The fourth drops the numbers entirely (Terminator Salvation).
  • For Star Trek, it started off clear but became a bit confusing later. The movies based on The Original Series started with Star Trek the Motion Picture and were thereafter numbered with clear and consistent Roman numerals: Star Trek II the Wrath of Khan, Star Trek III the Search For Spock, Star Trek IV the Voyage Home, Star Trek V the Final Frontier and Star Trek VI the Undiscovered Country. After that, the movies based on The Next Generation (Star Trek Generations, Star Trek First Contact, Star Trek Insurrection and Star Trek Nemesis) were not numbered, making it confusing if you don't know which order to watch them in. And then of course there's the 2009 film, which is just called Star Trek with no qualifier or subtitle, because it takes place in a different continuity...
    • On the early theatrical prints, the second movie's opening title said simply "Star Trek: The Wrath of Khan", presumably to help people forget the first film. The "II" was added later in the theatrical run (though the film was promoted as "Star Trek II" from fairly early on).
    • The Next Gen films don't continue the numbering to differentiate between their films and the original cast (and also, one suspects, because the numbering was getting a bit high). However, the most recent DVD releases insert the numerals VII through X into the titles.
  • This has been taken to the point of absurdity by the movie franchise The Fast and the Furious, in which no two movies use the same numbering system. The series goes The Fast And The Furious, 2 Fast 2 Furious, The Fast And The Furious: Tokyo Drift, Fast & Furious, Fast Five (known as Fast & Furious 5 in the UK). Just to confuse things further, the fourth and fifth films are Midquels fitting between the second and third films, and the main characters are inconsistent across the series as well. The producers are reportedly planning two more sequels, but haven't settled on the titles yet. They're casually referring to them as Fast Six and Fast Seven. Just to keep the tradition, here's to hoping they name them something like Fast VI and Fast 7: Forever Furious.
  • In order, Die Hard, Die Hard 2 (with the tagline/unofficial subtitle Die Harder), Die Hard: With a Vengeance, and Live Free or Die Hard — which has been released outside the US as Die Hard 4.0. (Mad About You spoofed this odd pattern with a Special Guest episode where Bruce Willis was filming Die Hard 4: So Die, Already.)
    • The fifth movie is currently titled A Good Day to Die Hard.
    • The French version of these series inverted this trope by first giving an entirely different title to each episode — Piège de cristal[2], 58 minutes pour vivre[3], and Une journée en enfer[4] — and going the Colon Cancer way with Die Hard 4: Retour en enfer[5].
  • The American Pie films: American Pie, American Pie 2 ... then American Wedding.
    • Although the British/Irish release was called American Pie: The Wedding.
    • The subsequent direct-to-DVD films then went back to the original Pie name but replaced the numbers with subtitles (American Pie Presents: Band Camp, American Pie Presents: The Naked Mile and American Pie Presents: Beta House).
    • And now going back to the original cast with American Reunion.
  • Dominion: Prequel to The Exorcist, probably the only movie in history to have a declarative statement in the title informing you that it's a sequel/prequel to another film.
    • The sequels themselves fit: The Exorcist was followed by Exorcist II: The Heretic and The Exorcist III, then got prequels in both Exorcist: The Beginning (done by Renny Harlin after Paul Schrader's film was relegated to The Shelf of Movie Languishment) and Dominion (Schrader's film).
  • The X-Men films: X-Men, X2: X-Men United: X-Men United, and X-Men: The Last Stand. The second film goes by a few different titles, perhaps because "X-men United" sounds like a soccer team to viewers outside the U.S.
    • Then there's prequels: X Men First Class and X Men Origins: Wolverine, which will be followed by The Wolverine (though the director said it'll be a standalone film instead of a full-fledged sequel/prequel).
  • After two numbered sequels, the fourth Final Destination movie - in somewhat of a similar vein to what happened to The Fast And The Furious series is called The Final Destination. And yes, it's not a R Emake/Reboot either. The following film, Final Destination 5, went back to numbering.
  • The Harry Palmer films used the title of Len Deighton's novels, then original names for the 1990s sequels. Oddly, sometimes those 1990s sequels appear as "Len Deighton's" even though they did not adapt any of his novels, and Len Deighton did not even coin the name Harry Palmer.
  • The original Pink Panther films never used numbers. The first three films all had completely separate titles (The Pink Panther, A Shot in the Dark and Inspector Clouseau). Then the fourth film (Return of the Pink Panther) reintroduced the Pink Panther diamond, and after that all the sequels worked the phrase "Pink Panther" into their titles even when the actual Pink Panther diamond didn't figure in their plots. Then the Continuity Reboot with Steve Martin started numbering its sequels, with no subtitle. Keeping all nine films in order can be tricky.
  • Oh dear God, the Highlander series. Highlander II the Quickening, Highlander III the Sorcerer, Highlander Endgame and Highlander the Source...
  • The Mummy 1999 was followed by The Mummy Returns and then The Mummy Tomb Of The Dragon Emperor.
    • The Mummy Returns spawned a prequel: The Scorpion King, which in turn spawned a prequel of its own (and soon yet another sequel).
  • The full title of the first The Naked Gun movie is The Naked Gun: From the Files of Police Squad!, to identify it as a TV-movie spin-off. The sequels were numbered "2½: The Smell of Fear" and "33⅓: The Final Insult," spoofing both this and Numbered Sequels.
    • Subsequent to the release of Naked Gun 33⅓: The Final Insult, long before speculation of a continuation gave way to the concept of the inevitable reboot, the unmade fourth installment was tentatively titled "Naked Gun 5."
    • Also bandied about - "Naked Gun 4 Score: And 3 Sequels Ago". Now sadly impossible due to Leslie Nielsen's death.
  • Hot Shots was followed by Hot Shots, Part Deux. Note that the announcer in the trailers specifically pronounced that "Deux" the way many English speakers trying to speak French would: "Duh".
  • Night of the Living Dead followed by Dawn of the Dead and Return of the Living Dead as separate branches, followed respectively by Day of the Dead and Return of the Living Dead, Part 2, and so forth.
  • Upon its release in 1977, Star Wars was called simply that. Its first sequel was titled Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back, and a re-release (in 1981) of the original retroactively added the subtitle Episode IV: A New Hope. This was all decades before Lucas got around to making the Prequel Trilogy. (Note that none of these movies were referred to by episode number anywhere but the opening crawl until the prequels came out.)
    • This always leads into Title Confusion when trying to mention one of the movies not by subtitle or number. For example, the "first Star Wars movie" is either Episode I or Episode IV.
  • Hammer Horror is the patron saint of this trope. Their Horror of Dracula begat The Brides of Dracula, followed up with Dracula: Prince of Darkness, which brought Dracula Has Risen from the Grave, and so on.
  • When Christopher Nolan gave the Batman films a Continuity Reboot with Batman Begins, the film's title appeared to be following the format set by the earlier Burton/Schumacher series (Batman, Batman Returns, Batman Forever and Batman and Robin[6]). Then the sequel to Batman Begins was titled The Dark Knight, and was followed by The Dark Knight Rises.
  • The Superman films were simply numbered up until the fourth installment, Superman IV: The Quest For Peace. The reboot of the series, a quasi-sequel to Superman II, was Superman Returns, which will be followed by The Man of Steel, because Batman has proved that you don't need the superhero's name in the title anymore.
    • To be fair, The Man Of Steel is meant to be a Continuity Reboot with no connection to the original series.
  • The sequel to Step Up was Step Up 2 The Streets. This could also be considered a Numbered Sequel.
  • The sequel to Airplane! was the aptly titled Airplane! II: The Sequel.
  • The "Thin Man" referred to in the title of the Dashiell Hammett novel and William Powell-Myrna Loy screwball comedy-mystery film The Thin Man was actually a missing person that Nick Charles was retained to find, and turns out to be the victim of the murder Nick and Nora wind up solving. For some reason, audiences started associating "the Thin Man" with Nick Charles (note that Nick isn't thin at all in the book, while William Powell was quite thin indeed), and the Thin Man sequels pretty much gave in to this and became references to the erroneous "Nick Charles" = "Thin Man" equation. This is most obvious in the fifth movie in the series, The Thin Man Goes Home, in which Nick Charles returned to his boyhood home to visit his parents (and, of course, managed during that visit to get involved in a murder case).
  • Apparently, deciding to make a sequel to Cube wasn't silly enough. They had to call the sequel Cube 2: Hypercube. The third movie was called Cube Zero.
  • This happened to Jackie Chan films in the USA a lot, because they were originally released only on home video here, where they were underground cult favorites, but not part of mainstream culture. Then his film Rumble in The Bronx was released theatrically and became a hit, so many of his earlier films got re-released on video or finally given a theatrical release. However, several of his films were part of long-running series, the earlier films typically had cheap sets and special effects, were shot on poor-quality film stock, and/or were not originally written with worldwide release in mind, and so the studios and distributors didn't think American audiences would understand the Chinese cultural concepts. So the later films in those series, which had better production values and more universal appeal, got theatrical releases under new titles, with the earlier films re-released on home video... retitled as if they were follow-on sequels to the later films that got theatrically-released first here in the states.
    • Armor of God 2: Operation Condor was released theatrically in the US first, so it was re-titled Operation Condor. When that did well, the earlier film in the series was retitled from Armor of God to Operation Condor 2: The Armor of the Gods.
    • Police Story 3: Supercop was similarly released theatrically as simply Supercop, leading to the several other films in the series being re-titled "Supercop 2" through Supercop 5 for home video releases.
    • Drunken Master 2 was retitled Legend of the Drunken Master when released in the US. You could be forgiven for thinking there wasn't a Drunken Master 1, given that nobody these days really associates Jackie Chan with his earliest fare.
  • Alvinandthe Chipmunks: The Squeakquel.
  • The Godzilla series has a fairly consistent Godzilla vs. Whatever or Whatever vs. Godzilla formula, but strange titles pop up from time to time. In Japan, there are two films called Godzilla, one of which is the original and the other of which is its direct sequel that erases the movies that came in between. Also, some of the later movies replaced the "vs." in the titles with an "X" for no apparent reason.
    • Before they settled on the "Vs." format, though, the filmmakers got somewhat...creative...with the titles. The fifth film, Ghidorah, the Three-Headed Monster dropped Godzilla from the title entirely, and the international titles for 3 of the next 4 films didn't reference Godzilla at all (Son of Godzilla, the 8th film, being the exception).
  • Surprisingly averted for almost the entire run of the Saw series, which were simply consistently numbered with successive roman numerals and no subtitles. This lasted until the seventh film, which instead of being Saw VII is Saw 3D. The DVD release has renamed it Saw: The Final Chapter.
  • Michael Bay said Transformers wouldn't have Numbered Sequels. It was followed by Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen and Transformers: Dark of the Moon. It's at least consistent so far, but this does create the obvious problem of not being able to know the correct order without any prior knowledge or research.
  • Mission Impossible had two numbered sequels. The fourth drops them: Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol.
  • The sequel to Piranha 3D will apparently be titled Piranha 3DD.
  • A Very Brady Sequel
  • Almost played straight with Tron's sequel, Tron: Legacy, which was originally going to be called TR2N. How it was supposed to be pronounced is anyone's guess.
  • The 2011 prequel to the 1982 John Carpenter's The Thing is called... The Thing, with no numbering or subtitles.
  • Gradually happened with Leprechaun. There's Leprechaun, followed by Leprechaun 2 and Leprechaun 3, then introducing subtitles with Leprechaun 4: In Space, followed by dropping the number for Leprechaun: In The Hood and ending with Leprechaun: Back 2 Da Hood by mimicking 2 Fast 2 Furious's ridiculous title.
  • Camp Blood, Camp Blood 2 and... Within the Woods.
  • Parodied in an early opening of Gremlins 2 The New Batch, in which Daffy Duck attempts to rename the film "The Return of Super-Daffy Meets Gremlins 2 Part 6: The Movie".
  • Home Alone 2: Lost In New York

Live-Action TV

  • While some teams returning to Robot Wars give their robot a numbered sequel name (Chaos 2, for example, which was much more successful than Chaos) others use an Oddly-Named Sequel 2: Electric Boogaloo name (for instance Scutter's Revenge being followed by Spawn of Scutter, which in turn was followed by Spawn Again).
  • Each season of Babylon 5 has its own subtitle: 'Signs and Portents', 'The Coming of Shadows', 'Point of No Return', 'No Surrender, No Retreat' and 'The Wheel of Fire'. However, this subtitle does not appear in the credits and was strictly informal until the DVD releases, when the subtitle was included on the front cover packaging.
    • The season titles were also the titles of the most significant episodes in that season, which did appear on screen. (Thus Season I was named Signs and Portents after the episode that introduced Morden and really kicked off the Myth Arc, and so on.)
  • Ashes to Ashes is a sequel series to Life On Mars set in London, eight years later. Both are David Bowie song titles. The ironic thing is that the song "Ashes to Ashes" is a sequel to the song "Space Oddity," which is not the name of a TV show. Yet.
  • The British musical comedy/drama series Blackpool had a two-part sequel, Viva Blackpool. The original Blackpool series was called Viva Blackpool for US distribution.
  • Grace and Favour, the short-lived sequel series to Are You Being Served, was marketed in the U.S. as Are You Being Served? Again! Some believe that this is due to Viewers are Morons, but others argue that if it were more clearly identified as a sequel to Are You Being Served?, it might not have been short-lived.
    • Well, it would still have been as short-lived, but you may be right in the sense that it may have been more popular. Billy Burden (Mr. Moulterd) died just after the series ended.
  • M*A*S*H was followed by AfterM*A*S*H.
  • Mighty Morphin Power Rangers was followed by Power Rangers Zeo. "Zeo" was the name of the crystal that gave the heroes their new powers.
  • Parodied by portuguese comedy show Paraíso Filmes about a Toilet shop/Movie studio (no that's not a typo) where the plot of every episode revolves around shooting a Z grade movie. In one episode they shoot their newest production, a ninja movie entitled "The Return of the Vengeance of the Red Dragon 6"


  • Terry Pratchett's second book, The Light Fantastic, was originally subtitled "The Sequel to The Colour of Magic" in its UK print. As Pratchett became more prolific, it was changed to "A Sequel to The Colour of Magic" and, later, "A Discworld Novel."
  • Similar to the Discworld example, the Dresden Files books were labelled "Book n of the Dresden Files" for about the first six books. Since Dead Beat, the seventh installment, they've been "A novel of the Dresden Files".
  • American Gods has a sequel named Anansi Boys. Narrator in Anansi Boys has a fun with this trope at one point.

 Narrator: Nothing was happening. Still nothing was happening. Another Nothing. The Return Of Nothing. Son Of Nothing. Nothing Strikes Back. Nothing, Abbott and Costello Meets The Werewolf.

  • Even numbered books in the Honor Harrington series all have "Honor" in the title.
  • While the Ciem Webcomic Series consisted of one comic with Numbered Sequels planned, the Continuity Reboot book Ciem: Vigilante Centipede plans to have sequels dubbed Nuclear Crisis and Condemnation, which will have similar plots to the canceled Ciem 2 and Ciem 3. It's prequel will still be dubbed The Battle for Gerosha.


  • Five Iron Frenzy named one album Five Iron Frenzy 2: Electric Boogaloo after this trope. It was their fourth full-length studio album, and the only one to be self-titled.
  • The first three LPs released by Led Zeppelin were called simply Led Zeppelin, Led Zeppelin II and Led Zeppelin III. Their fourth album, which has no title aside from a sequence of unpronounceable symbols, is informally referred to as Led Zeppelin IV in keeping with this pattern.
    • The fourth album is also sometimes called "Zoso" due to the fourth unpronounceable symbol looking vaguely like that word.
  • Early in their career, Franz Ferdinand had intended to title all their albums simply Franz Ferdinand, and differentiate them only by their cover art. Their producer talked them out of the idea.
    • Their second album, You Could Have It So Much Better, was originally going to be called You Could Have It So Much Better...with Franz Ferdinand, which is a much better title.
    • Similarly, Weezer currently has three (out of six) self-titled albums. They're identified by the colors of the cover: blue, green, and red.
    • That's most likely a reference to The White Album.
  • Peter Gabriel's first four solo albums were all named Peter Gabriel. To avoid insanity, they've since been given nicknames based on their covers: Car, Scratch, Melt, and Security.
    • Gabriel said he wanted each cover to look like the next issue of a magazine (thus the identical typeface/layout on those four LPs). His American label regarded this as a marketing nightmare. As a minor concession, Gabriel agreed to allow a sticker reading "Security" to appear on the shrinkwrap of the fourth: a disposable title. The label then unilaterally decided to put the "title" on the spine, the record's label, etc. (Some reissues have conformed with the artist's original intentions.) BTW how would the title "Security" correspond to the cover art (a video capture of...something)?
  • Fleetwood Mac released two self-titled albums - one during the years when Peter Green was the frontman, and another during their decidedly more successful Buckingham-Nicks years.
  • The Soviettes subvert the usual practice of bands naming their albums with actual titles, and made LP I, LP II and LP III.
    • Portending at least a six-album career, these Minnesotans strove to create a "rainbow" of album art. LP I sported a red scheme, LP II featured orange, and LP III was yellow. Theoretically, LPs IV-VI would have been green-, blue- and violet-themed (indigo having been stricken from the spectrum long ago). This was confirmed both in an interview and in the fact that the band's post-career online-only release, Rarities, had the green color scheme LP IV would have had.
  • Seal's first two albums were self-titled.
    • His third self-titled album (but fourth album) is called Seal IV.
      • He's being administered to Heidi Klum intravenously to help keep her weight down.
  • The supergroup Traveling Wilburys first album was called simply Volume One; their second and final album was named, of course, Volume Three.
    • Volume One was given this name for deliberately ironic reasons; i.e., the unlikelihood of there ever being a Volume Two. Of course, when a new album was in the works, that would have ruined the joke, so they had to give it an equally ironic title.
    • She & Him titled their first album Volume One in tribute to Traveling Wilburys. However, in their distinctly non-ironic style, they decided to call the next album Volume Two.
  • They Might Be Giants' self-titled debut album has been nicknamed "The Pink Album" because of its cover art. And as a Beatles reference.
  • Coheed and Cambria's entire discography thus far is full of this. In order: The Second Stage Turbine Blade, In Keeping Secrets of Silent Earth: 3, Good Apollo I'm Burning Star IV, Vol. 1: From Fear Through the Eyes of Madness and Good Apollo I'm Burning Star IV, Vol. 2: No World for Tomorrow. While there are at least chronological numbers in there, note that they started with 2.
    • That's kinda the point; number 1 is a prequel album that is (supposedly) going to explain some of the backstory.
    • The aforementioned prequel album is titled Year of the Black Rainbow, making it the first in the continuity without a number in its name. However, the first track is simply called "One".
  • Chicago has subverted this numerous times, making album titles with nothing but roman numerals (I think they're up to around "XXX" by now).
    • They're up to XXXII, actually, and that includes the greatest hits but DOESN'T include a few non-numbered releases like "Live in Japan" so they really have closer to 40 releases over the years.
  • Dr Steel's second album is, of course, "Dr Steel II: Eclectic Boogaloo". The album art also has to be seen to be believed.
  • Killswitch Engage's second self-titled release was known among fans as Killswitch Engage II even while the title was just rumored.
  • Metallica's 1996 album Load was followed the next year with ReLoad.
  • Minus the Bear's first album, Highly Refined Pirates, contains a song called "Get Me Naked 2: Electric Boogaloo" - the supposed sequel to the song "Hey Wanna Throw Up? Get Me Naked" which appeared on their first EP called This is What I Know About Being Gigantic. Remaining true to the form of this trope, the "sequel" is not related to the original at all, and neither song has any correlation to its title.
  • The Beastie Boys latest album is called "Hot Sauce Committee Part 2". There is no "Part One", though there was supposed to be. Supposedly the boys were busy making "Part One" when MCA was diagnosed with cancer, thus the album was delayed. Part 2 was released because the boys said they were going to release it on a certain date, so it kind of makes "Part One" a case of "The Missing Floppies".
  • Also boasting two self-titled albums is the band Rancid. The first was released in 1993, the second in 2000.

Professional Wrestling

  • In 1985, the World Wrestling Federation held a pay-per-view called Wrestlemania. Since then, they've bounced back and forth in number conventions for each year's edition of the show. Each show name, in order:
  • In 2005, WWE held an Extreme Championship Wrestling reunion event called ECW One Night Stand. The event was held again the next year under the same name as the first show of the newly-relaunched ECW brand. The year after that, WWE decided to drop the ECW-exclusive nature of the event, and it became WWE One Night Stand. Two years later, it was again renamed WWE Extreme Rules.
  • Every year from 2001 to 2006, WWE held an event called "Vengeance." The 2007 edition was called "Vengeance: Night of Champions," and for 2008 through 2010, the show was just "Night of Champions." To confuse matters further, 2011 saw both "Night of Champions" and "Vengeance."
  • WCW's Super Brawl event was pretty consistently called "WCW Super Brawl [Roman numeral]" aside from WCW Super Brawl 2000 and the next year's WCW Super Brawl Revenge.
  • When WCW ran a motorcycle-themed pay-per-view in 1997 called Hog Wild, they ran afoul of a Harley Davidson group which owned that name. All subsequent editions of the show were called Road Wild.

Tabletop Games

  • Due to a disagreement between the game's two creators, Dungeons and Dragons was split into two games, a stripped-down version also called Dungeons & Dragons, and an expanded version called Advanced Dungeons & Dragons. This was later revised into Advanced Dungeons & Dragons 2nd Edition, while the second Dungeons & Dragons was still being published in parallel. Then the publisher folded and the rights were bought by Wizards of the Coast, who unified the two lines as Dungeons & Dragons 3rd Edition. So is this the 3rd edition of Dungeons & Dragons, which incorporated a bunch of concepts from Advanced Dungeons & Dragons? Or is it the 3rd edition of Advanced Dungeons & Dragons, making it the 4th edition in order (since the original AD&D was a sequel to the original D&D, with the second version of D&D as a Gaiden Game).
    • Then they followed 3rd Edition with a minor rewrite called Dungeons & Dragons 3.5, which was not so much "confusing" as "stupid" naming.
    • The current edition has returned to whole numbers, with a very revised rules system released as the 4th Edition. Meanwhile, former publishing partner Paizo has taken the style of D&D's 3rd Edition and 3.5 rules and slightly revised it into a system they call Pathfinder; the deliberate similarities have earned Pathfinder the nickname "D&D 3.75", especially among players who disdain the alterations made for 4th Edition D&D.
  • Rolemaster was followed by Rolemaster Standard System, which split the fandom to the point that the publisher re-released the original as Rolemaster Classic, at the same time renaming the Standard System to Rolemaster Fantasy Roleplaying. They also released a stripped-down set of light rules as Rolemaster Express, after creating a completely different and incompatible stripped-down, simplified game as HARP.
  • Paranoia has had (in order) 1st edition, 2nd edition, 5th edition (later declared an "unproduct", 3rd edition (unpublished), XP (formally dropped after Microsoft complained, so this version was just called "Paranoia"), and 25th Anniversary Edition (a reprint of XP with some additional material).
    • In the interest of fairness, 5th edition was an intentional spoof of this very trope.
  • The editions of Traveller are, in direct line: Traveller, MegaTraveller, Traveller: The New Era, Marc Millar's Traveller, Traveller, Traveller 5. Note that Traveller 5 is the 6th. A completely unrelated science fiction game from the same company was released as Traveller: 2300 - it's actually a sequel to Twilight: 2000. This also doesn't count the ports of the setting to generic rules systems: GURPS Traveller, Traveller 20 and Traveller HERO.

Video Games

  • The Battlefield series goes as thus: Battlefield 1942, Battlefield: Vietnam, Battlefield 2 (which was spun off onto consoles as Battlefield 2: Modern Combat), Battlefield 2142, Battlefield: Bad Company, Battlefield Heroes, Battlefield 1943, Battlefield: Bad Company 2 (which now has an Expansion Pack titled Battlefield: Bad Company 2: Vietnam), and Battlefield 3. The numbers don't indicate proper order at all, and there's bound to be a lot of confusion over the two games set in The Vietnam War now.
  • Kingdom Hearts:
  • Halo 3:ODST actually takes place concurrent with Halo 2 and has next-to-nothing to do with Halo 3, but because it was built on the Halo 3 engine it got Halo 3's number.
  • The Super Robot Wars series does this for each Alternate Continuity; Super Robot Wars F, Super Robot Wars Alpha, and Super Robot Wars: Original Generation are among the variations.
    • Super Robot Wars: Original Generation, and Super Robot Wars: Original Generation 2 were combined as a remake Super Robot Wars: Original Generations. Now, the combined remake is getting a sequel: 2nd Super Robot Wars: Original Generation. So the second game is the 4th release and set after the one numbered 2. Okay.
  • The Harvest Moon series has done this almost to an extreme. Except for some versions on Nintendo portables (which are simply named Harvest Moon 1, 2, 3 and DS) and the PSP version, every sequel has a new name: Harvest Moon: Back to Nature, Harvest Moon: Friends of Mineral Town, Harvest Moon: A Wonderful Life, Harvest Moon: Save the Homeland, Harvest Moon: Magical Melody, Harvest Moon: Tree of Tranquility, Harvest Moon: Island of Happiness, Harvest Moon: Animal Parade, and Harvest Moon: Sunshine Islands. Also, many of these have a For Girls version, with a twisted name (such as Harvest Moon: Another Wonderful Life); the Japanese versions of these just tacked on a "For Girl".
    • Also,"Harvest Moon DS Cute".
      • Because as you know, Cute = girl.
  • The Duke Nukem series: not counting spinoffs, Duke Nukem, Duke Nukem II, Duke Nukem 3D and Duke Nukem Forever. As a funny note, it started out as Duke Nukem, but was quickly released as Duke Nukum because of a Captain Planet and the Planeteers character with the "Duke Nukem" name. When the sequel was being developed, the developers discovered that the Captain Planet character's name had not been registered, so the sequels all use the original Duke Nukem name.
  • No One Lives Forever: the original game was titled The Operative in No One Lives Forever however for the sequel they turned the original subtitle into the main title, resulting in No One Lives Forever 2: A Spy in H.A.R.M.'s Way.
    • Let's not even mention the terrible sequel/prequel known simply as Contract J.A.C.K.
  • Metal Gear and Metal Gear 2 Solid Snake were followed by Metal Gear Solid. The word "Solid" was appended to the third title as a substitute for the number "3" to signify that it was not only the third game in the series, but also the first one in 3D. All the subsequent sequels kept the Metal Gear Solid title and appended numbers to the title, with subtitles for good measure: Metal Gear Solid 2 Sons of Liberty, Metal Gear Solid 3 Snake Eater, Metal Gear Solid 4 Guns of the Patriots, Metal Gear Solid Peace Walker... Then there's also the Metal Gear Acid offshoot.
  • Marathon was followed by Marathon 2: Durandal which was followed by Marathon Infinity. Infinity was then given a joke award by MacFormat for "largest version number increase." As if this wasn't enough, the game engine for Marathon 2 was subsequently released and developed into an open-source version named Aleph One, thereby restoring/continuing sequential numbering at the expense of not being understandable by anyone who wasn't a math major. (Partially justified in that much of the "plot" of Infinity was based on universe hopping and the game was released with the creators' level-design, physics-editing, and graphics-editing tools so that players could make their own stories, making the game "infinite.")
  • Banjo-Kazooie was followed by Banjo-Tooie, which made in-game mention of a Banjo-Threeie that led some people to believe that the third game would be called that. The third game instead ended up being called Banjo-Kazooie: Nuts & Bolts.
  • Panzer Dragoon was followed by Panzer Dragoon II Zwei, Panzer Dragoon Mini, Panzer Dragoon Saga, and Panzer Dragoon Orta.
    • To be fair, "Zwei" is German for "two"; in certain rolls of Orta's ending credits, the game is referred to as "Panzer Dragoon Vier", "vier" being German for "four".
  • The sequel to Quake II is Quake IV, due to the production company continually releasing unrelated games under the Quake name. It should be pointed out that Quake II is an Artifact Title and that the game between them, Quake III Arena, was multiplayer-only, in an era where that was pretty uncommon, and it didn't really have a whole lot to do with Quake except for using its engine.
  • In World of Warcraft, after doing the quest "Here Fishy Fishy", you get a followup involving an eel egg booby trapped with explosives. The quest name? Why, "Here Fishy Fishy 2: Eel-egg-trick Boogaloo," of course.
  • While the standard Final Fantasy games are regularly named, its side-game names are getting progressively weirder.
  • Super Smash Bros. was followed up with Super Smash Bros. Melee and Super Smash Bros. Brawl.
    • The Japanese naming conventions are even weirder. Nintendo All-Star: Dairantou Smash Brothers [sic], Dairantou Smash Bros. DX (DX is short for "Deluxe"), and Dairantou Smash Bros. X. All words in English in the title are actually that way, by the way. "Dairantou" roughly translates to "Melee" or "Brawl."
  • Bubble Bobble: More a case of Oddly Named Non Linear Numbered Sequels, there are three second-installments (Rainbow Islands, Bubble Symphony, Part 2) and two third-installments (Parasol Stars, Bubble Memories) in the series.
  • In North America, the sequel to Rival Schools: United By Fate was named simply Project Justice. In all other regions, the connection was made more clear - in Japan, the game was titled Moero! Justice Gakuen (the original game was Shiritsu Justice Gakuen) while other regions used the Project Justice name but tacked on Rival Schools 2 at the end.
    • It didn't help that the Japan-only Updated Rerelease of the original game was titled Shiritsu Justice Gakuen: Nekketsu Seisyun Nikki 2. The number was for the updated character creation mode (the Nekketsu Seisyun Nikki part of the title) included in the game, but the number's inclusion caused everyone outside of Japan to mistake it for a sequel.
  • In the Tales (series), Tales of Phantasia and Tales of Symphonia both had gaiden sequels named Tales of Phantasia: Narikiri Dungeon, Tales of Phantasia: Summoner's Lineage, and, depending on where you live, Tales of Symphonia Dawn of the New World or Knight of Ratatosk.
  • Despite five entries (split in 19 games) in the main series, there has never been a Pokémon 2, let alone 3, 4 or 5, despite the fact that the second generation was indeed a direct sequel to the first one, and that the Sinnoh games (Generation IV) were a semisequel to Generation II. Every game after the first generation (whose games were named after colors) is merely titled "Pokémon" plus a precious material (gold, silver, crystal, ruby, sapphire, emerald, diamond, pearl and platinum) for subtitle. Since Pokemon games come in pairs (and by the end of the generation they end up being a trio), non-hard-core fans might have a hard time when trying to figure out which versions are paired with each other and distinguish the generations. Generation V switching back to colors (Black and White) sort of made things easier, but still is a non-indicative name (and after three generations of metal/jewel based titles, it becomes itself an odd theme). For those wondering, terms like the "second generation" or "Generation V" are only Fan Nicknames for groups of games and the Pokémon within them (which also distinguish remakes from the originals).
    • Among the spinoffs, the original Pokémon Ranger is followed by Pokémon Ranger: Shadows of Almia and Pokémon Ranger: Guardian Signs, Pokémon Mystery Dungeon had its first games bear the subtitles "Red Rescue Team" and "Blue Rescue Team: (which, even more confusingly, aren't even on the same system as one another), followed up by "Explorers of Time/Darkness/Sky" and then the Japan-exclusive "Adventure Squad", and Pokémon Colosseum's sequel is called Pokémon XD: Gale of Darkness]].
    • Within the series' context, the main series titles have their own Oddly Named Sequels in the form of Black 2 & White 2.
  • All three Xenosaga games take their subtitles from Nietzche: Der wille zur Macht, Jenseits von Gut und Bose, and Also Sprach Zarathustra. They also precisely reversed the order Nietzche originally wrote them in - Also Sprach Zarathustra was first published from 1883-1885, Jenseits von Gut und Bose in 1886, and Der Wille Zur Macht was compiled, edited, and published post-humously by his sister. Presumably, the planned Episodes 4-6 would have continued to borrow from his earlier and earlier works for titles as well.
  • Ace Attorney has this. While the Japanese sequels are Gyakuten Saiban 2-4 and Gyakuten Kenji for the spinoff, they were translated as Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney, Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney: Justice for All, Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney: Trials and Tribulations, Apollo Justice: Ace Attorney, and Ace Attorney Investigations: Miles Edgeworth. We may need an oncologist in here.
    • Probably has to do with the fact that the localization staff chose the title for the first game before learning that the fourth game would have a new protagonist. Thus, the Ace Attorney part was promoted as the main title for the rest of the series, while Phoenix Wright was demoted to a subtitle in the sequels.
  • No less a video game personnage than Mario has been responsible for this, multiple times. First, the sequel to Mario Bros. was named Super Mario Bros. This was numbered sanely until the Super Nintendo came along, when his fifth console game became Super Mario World (although it was actually known as Super Mario Bros. 4: Super Mario World in Japan). The sequel to that was called Super Mario World 2: Yoshis Island, and then the series split - the Yoshi's Island games became their own series, while Mario stopped even bothering with numbering them in sequence (until Super Mario Galaxy 2). Something similar to the Yoshi's Island rename happened to the Super Mario Land games for the Game Boy, in which the third game was Super Mario Land 3: Wario Land, which spun off into the Wario Land series.
    • The initial Super Mario Bros. series is numbered sanely only in the Western markets: the game released in the West as Super Mario Bros 2 was released as "Super Mario Bros. USA" in Japan — the game known in Japan as Super Mario Bros. 2 was released as part of a compilation game in the West years later under the title Super Mario Bros.: The Lost Levels.
      • And then there are the remakes for the GBA. Super Mario Bros. 2 became Super Mario Advance. The worst offender is the GBA remake of Super Mario Bros. 3, titled "Super Mario Advance 4: Super Mario Bros 3".
  • Resident Evil Code Veronica was intended to be the true sequel to Resident Evil 2, but since the game was originally being developed on the Dreamcast instead of the Play Station like the previous games, Sony threw a hissy fit, forcing Capcom to relabel the game as a spin-off and leave it off the numbered series. At the same time, Resident Evil: Nemesis, a side-story game that was being developed on the Resident Evil 2 engine, ended up being released as Resident Evil 3 Nemesis instead. Funnily enough, Resident Evil 4 ended up being developed for the Nintendo Gamecube when Capcom eventually got around to making it.
    • Another oddity is that the logo of Resident Evil 4 actually gives the number first, making it technically "4 Resident Evil."
  • The game series now known as Legacy of Kain started with the game Blood Omen: Legacy of Kain with the weighting making it apparent the 'Legacy of Kain' part was a subtitle. A few years later the next game came out called Legacy of Kain: Soul Reaver (blood no longer being much of a big deal to the wraithlike new hero Raziel). It was followed by Legacy of Kain: Soul Reaver 2...but then came Legacy of Kain: Blood Omen 2, which thoroughly confused everyone. The 2 sub-series finally converged in the final game, Legacy of Kain: Defiance- to everyone's great relief.
  • The numerous Street Fighter installments by Capcom with their various adjectives, suffixes, and subtitles can be a bit confusing to first-time fans of the series. This is because Capcom considers every Roman numbered entry in the franchise after the first game to be its own sub-series, making it a bit harder to number specific entries in each sub-series.
    • Street Fighter II: The World Warrior was followed by Street Fighter II (Dash): Champion Edition, Street Fighter II (Dash Turbo): Hyper Fighting, Super Street Fighter II: The New Challengers, and Super Street Fighter II Turbo (aka Super Street Fighter II X: Grand Master Challenge). Those are just the original arcade releases. Some of the console-specific variants include Street Fighter II Turbo for the SNES, Street Fighter II: Special Champion Edition for the Genesis (both were compilations of Champion Edition and Hyper Fighting), Super Street Fighter II Turbo Revival for the GBA (a portable version of Super Turbo), Hyper Street Fighter II: The Anniversary Edition for the PS2 and Xbox (a pseudo-compilation of the five arcade games), and Super Street Fighter II Turbo HD Remix for the PS3 and Xbox 360.
    • Street Fighter Alpha: Warriors' Dream (aka Street Fighter ZERO) was followed by Alpha 2 and Alpha 3 on the arcades. Alpha 2 and Alpha 3 both had their share of minor upgrades. Alpha 2 had Alpha 2 Gold for the PS1 and Saturn (aka ZERO 2 Dash, which in turn was based on a minor Asia-only arcade upgrade called ZERO 2 Alpha), while Alpha 3 was followed by Alpha 3 Upper for the GBA (which took its title from ZERO 3 Upper, a Japan-only arcade upgrade with the roster additions from the console ports) and Alpha 3 MAX (aka ZERO 3 Double Upper).
    • The Street Fighter EX series consists of EX, EX Plus, EX Plus Alpha (a PS1 port of the previous game), EX 2, EX 2 Plus (which also had a PS1 port), and EX 3 (a PS2-exclusive).
    • Street Fighter III: New Generation was followed by Street Fighter III 2nd Impact: Giant Attack and Street Fighter III 3rd Strike: Fight for the Future. Sometimes, the 2nd Impact and 3rd Strike portions of their respective titles are treated as subtitles rather part of the main titles (in such cases, the actual subtitles of Giant Attack and Fight for the Future are omitted).
    • Street Fighter IV was followed by Super Street Fighter IV, which was followed by Super Street Fighter IV: Arcade Edition. There's also the 3D Edition of Super for the 3DS.
  • In Japan, the Slam Masters (or Muscle Bomber) series is comprised of Muscle Bomber, Muscle Bomber Duo, and Super Muscle Bomber. The corresponding English versions of these three games are Saturday Night Slam Masters, Muscle Bomber Duo, and Ring of Destruction: Slam Masters II. In other words, the series got its title changed to Slam Master for the English version of the first game, and then changed back to Muscle Bomber for the second, only to be changed back to Slam Masters for the third.
  • The Legend of Zelda series only had one numbered sequel: Zelda II: The Adventure of Link. The remainder of the series are distinguished by their subtitles (i.e: A Link to the Past, Ocarina of Time, The Wind Waker). Sort of justified since Zelda II was the only true sequel to the first Zelda in the series' fictional chronology and every game since then has been a relative Non-Linear Sequel, with only a few of them having their own direct (and still non-numbered) sequels).
  • Samurai Shodown: Warriors Rage for the Play Station is not a port, but a distant sequel to the similarly titled Hyper Neo Geo 64 arcade game Samurai Shodown 64: Warriors Rage (which itself was a sequel to the original Samurai Shodown 64). The Japanese versions averted this by being named differently.
  • The European/Japanese-only sequel to Trace Memory (Another Code in those regions) was titled Another Code R: A Journey Into Lost Memories (Gateway of Memory in Japan.)
  • Due to legal issues, the PlayStation version of Soul Edge was renamed Soul Blade in America and Europe. To sidestep this legal hurdle, the sequels were released under the SoulCalibur name instead. Thus SoulCalibur IV is actually the fifth game in the series.
  • The sequel to Battle Clash is titled Metal Combat: Falcon's Revenge. The only indicator on the title that Metal Combat is a sequel is the fact that the hero's mecha in both games is called the "ST Falcon".
  • Darkstalkers (aka Vampire in Japan) was followed by Night Warriors (Vampire Hunter) and Vampire Savior (which was almost titled Jedah's Damnation in America until they decided to stick with Vampire Savior). To make matters more confusing, Japan received two simultaneously released updated rereleases of Vampire Savior titled Vampire Savior 2 and Vampire Hunter 2; the main difference between the three games are in their character roster. The PlayStation game Darkstalker 3 (aka Vampire Savior: EX Edition) is actually a pseudo compilation of Vampire Savior, Vampire Savior 2, and Vampire Hunter 2.
  • Wolfenstein. The 2009 sequel of Return to Castle Wolfenstein.
  • Capcom's first JoJo's Bizarre Adventure fighting game for the arcades was released internationally under the shortened title of Jojo's Venture. The sequel, which was titled Jojo's Bizarre Adventure: Heritage for the Future in Japan, was released under the manga's full title of Jojo's Bizarre Adventure internationally. The PlayStation and Dreamcast ports had no such titling issues.
  • The Anno Domini series of historical city builders (known as A.D. in some markets) goes back and forth between the centuries. First there was Anno 1602, followed by Anno 1503, then Anno 1701, Anno 1404 and finally Anno 2070. Even odder since the numeration could lead a newbie to think 1701 is the first, with the series going backwards 99 years with each installment.
    • In addition to all this in some markets the latest installment Anno 1404 is sold as Dawn of Discovery. This in turn has an expansion pack which is known as both Anno 1404: Venice and Dawn of Discovery: Venice.
    • Interestingly, the dates always add up to the number nine.
  • Shinobi III may sound like a sensible name for a sequel, until you realize it's not literally the third game in the Shinobi series at all. Although, it is the third Shinobi game for the Sega Genesis, the first two Genesis games were already sequels to previous Shinobi games. The first Genesis game, The Revenge of Shinobi, is a sequel to the Master System version of the first Shinobi, which itself was based on an arcade game, while Shadow Dancer: The Secret of Shinobi, the second Genesis game, was itself a loose sequel to the arcade's Shadow Dancer, which was the arcade sequel to Shinobi. That's not even counting The Cyber Shinobi: Shinobi Part 2, the European-exclusive Master System sequel to the first Shinobi. So which game could be considered the "true Shinobi II"? The game system of Shinobi III is clearly based on The Revenge of Shinobi and the Japanese versions of both games makes their relation a lot less ambiguous, since they're titled The Super Shinobi and The Super Shinobi II.
  • Tradewest's fighting game based on the Double Dragon cartoon was titled Double Dragon V: The Shadow Falls, which was released for the SNES and Genesis (as well as the Jaguar), even though it had nothing to do with the previous Technos-developed games and there was no "Double Dragon IV". While technically there was a fourth Double Dragon game, it was an SNES-exclusive installment titled Super Double Dragon, meaning that the owners of the other consoles would've not been aware of it.
  • The second Tetris the Grand Master game's name is a source of minor confusion; fans have a hard time decising whether it's Tetris: The Grand Master 2 - The Absolute or Tetris: The Absolute - The Grand Master 2. Then there's Tetris: The Grand Master 3 - Terror-Instinct, Tetris: The Grand Master ACE (a spinoff of TGM), and Tetris: The Grand Master 4 - The Masters of Round (technically the fifth game in the series).
  • DJMAX Portable, DJMAX Portable 2, DJMAX Portable Clazziquai Edition, DJMAX Portable Black Square, and the US-only DJMAX Portable Fever.
  • The sequel to Galaga was called Gaplus, then was rereleased under the name Galaga 3. There is no Galaga 2.
    • And then, of course, Galaga '88. Does the absence of intervening numbers need to be brought up again?
  • The virtually unknown Real Time Strategy Earth 2140 has a much more successful sequel named Earth 2150 (or Earth 2150: Escape from the Blue Planet), which itself has 2 stand-alone Expansion Packs named Earth 2150: The Moon Project (some editions drop Earth 2150) and Earth 2150: Lost Souls. The third full game in the series is, consequently, named Earth 2160, even though Earth itself is gone by that point in an Earthshattering Kaboom, and the entire game takes place on other planets. Apparently, it is a rule in the series that a major conflict has to take place every 10 years.
  • Mushihime-sama's sequel is called Mushihime-sama Futari. "Futari" means "two people."
  • The "Divinity" series gets to be oddly named from the very beginning, but the sequels make their own kind of nonsense. In order: Divine Divinity, Beyond Divinity, and third: Divinity 2: The Dragon Knight Saga (which is itself made up of Divinity 2: Ego Draconis and Divinity 2: Flames of Vengeance. Divine Divinity was meant to be Divinity: Sword of Lies, and Beyond Divinity was a spinoff; Ego Draconis was the original Divinity 2 game, which was rereleased as The Dragon Knight Saga as a bundle or as just the expansion, Flames of Vengeance.
  • Tecmo's Deception was followed by Kagero: Deception II and Deception III: Dark Delusion. Okay, at least they're numbered. Then Tecmo calls the fourth game... Trapt? Wha..?
  • The Panzer General series, as released in Germany. The first one was still Panzer General, the (Panzer General II) became Panzer General 3D (even though it wasn't 3D), and then the actual Panzer General 3D became Panzer General 4. Faces where palmed.
  • Parasite Eve gets a normal numbering for its first sequel, but the next game is named The 3rd Birthday. Not Parasite Eve: The 3rd Birthday. Just... The 3rd Birthday.
    • According to the developers, this is due to it being set in the same universe, but having few connections to the previous games besides the main character.
  • In the case of Need for Speed, ordering the Hot Pursuit subseries while give you a headache: Need For Speed III: Hot Pursuit, then Need For Speed: Hot Pursuit II, and then Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit. Yes, the completely unnumbered title is the sequel to the game that's number two.
  • Love Plus then Love Plus+ and now for the 3DS Project Love Plus.
  • In Japan, the third game of the Strikers 1945 series is called Strikers 1999 to reference the Setting Update. Everywhere else, it's called Strikers 1945 III.
  • Wonder Boy probably has the most confusing series of sequels out of all the examples listed here thanks to the numerous alternate titles the games had between different platform ports and regional releases.
    • The first game itself, originally an arcade release, is also known as Super Wonder Boy on the Japanese Master System (since it has a few enhancements from the arcade version and there was also an earlier Wonder Boy port released in Japan for the SG-1000, Sega's first game console) and Revenge of Dracon on the American Game Gear (it was still called Wonder Boy everywhere else).
    • The second entry in the series was Wonder Boy: Monster Land for the arcade, which was ported to the Master System in Japan under the name of Super Wonder Boy: Monster World and that particular version was released in the west as Wonder Boy in Monster Land (the "in" was not present in the arcade version's title).
    • The third and last of the arcade releases was titled Wonder Boy III Monster Lair. The console ports for the Turbo Grafx 16 and Mega Drive both kept the same name this time, although the cover artwork for the TG16 version omits the "Wonder Boy III" portion.
    • The fourth entry is when things start to get confusing. The game was released for the Master System in the west as Wonder Boy III the Dragons Trap (titled as such since it was the third Master System game in the series), which is a distinct game from the aforementioned Wonder Boy III: Monster Lair. The Master System version was supposed to be released in Japan as Monster World II, but that version got canceled. Instead, the later Game Gear port (which was simply titled Wonder Boy: The Dragon's Trap in the west, dropping the numeral altogether) came out there as Monster World II: Dragon no Wana.
    • The next entry was Wonder Boy V: Monster World III for the Mega Drive (simply titled Wonder Boy in Monster World in the west, not to be confused with the aforementioned Super Wonder Boy: Monster World, the Sega Mark III version of Wonder Boy in Monster Land). Despite its Japanese title, Monster World III is actually the fourth game in the series released in Japan, since Monster World II (which fills the position of "Wonder Boy IV") was only released a few months later in Japan, unless we count the Dragon's Curse/Adventure Island remake by Hudson Soft (which opens a whole 'nother can of worms).
    • Monster World IV is the sixth and final game in the series. It drops the Wonder Boy name completely since the protagonist in this one is a girl.
  • The Call of Duty franchise is actually handed back and forth between two developers, after the fourth installment the sequels changed as each went in their separate directions. Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare begat Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 (the Call of Duty was largely omitted from advertising) which begat Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3. Call of Duty: World At War followed 4, then Call of Duty: Black Ops, and a rumored Call of Duty: Black Ops 2.
  • Upon the success of Command and Conquer: Red Alert, the original Command And Conquer was subtitled Tiberian Dawn to differentiate it from the Red Alert games and from its own sequel, Tiberian Sun.
    • The name Tiberian Dawn had been used by Westwood in pre-release materials, and even appeared in the readme.txt file, but didn't appear anywhere in the original game or its packaging, so didn't see widespread use among fans until it became necessary to differentiate the first game from the series as a whole.
    • To be fair, that sorta thing happens in real life, such as World War One would never have been know as such until the second one came along 20 years later.
  • Sega's House of the Dead series played off Romero's Dawn of the Dead series, including Typing of the Dead and Pinball of the Dead.
    • Well, that's for the side games only. The main series has always had Numbered Sequels, up until the prequel OVERKILL.
  • The Star Wars: Dark Forces games have a strange number sequence. They start with Dark Forces, followed by Jedi Knight: Dark Forces II, then Jedi Knight II: Jedi Outcast and finally Jedi Knight: Jedi Academy. Even worse when you see that LucasArts (and no one else) considers the full titles to all be prefixed with "Star Wars."
  • The first sequel to Myst was called Riven: The Sequel to Myst. Later games adopted a more conventional numbering scheme, resulting in Myst III: Exile, Myst IV: Revelation, and Myst V: End of Ages. A spinoff also exists, which went through enough name changes between its development, release, the cancellation of its online component, the resurrection of its online component through GameTap and its second cancellation that it probably deserves its own trope. The last name it had was Myst Online: Uru Live.
    • This is largely because "Riven: The Sequel to Myst" is five words, and the game has a thing about five.
    • As a side note, Myst V: End of Ages, although named in the Myst continuity, actually continues (and ends) the Uru storyline.
  • Heretic was followed by Hexen, Hexen II and Heretic II.
    • Originally, Hexen II was to be named Hecatomb - the trilogy's names was apparently decided by John Carmack himself. Heretic II is a sidestory unrelated to the larger Serpent Riders Story Arc.
  • Many game franchises were simply given the subtitle "3-D" for their first 3-D title. (As were quite a few that started around this time.) Even more likely if this also happened to be the third installment.
  • Apparently the English-speaking world needs their sequels to have subtitles. Shadow Hearts 2, as it is called in Japan, was changed to Shadow Hearts: Covenant for the English version. The third game followed suit, and was called Shadow Hearts: From the New World in all versions.
    • And let's not forget that they're all sequels to a game called Koudelka.
  • In the Unreal series, the second installment of the main line (after Unreal, not counting the Expansion Pack) is called Unreal II the Awakening. Likewise, the successor of Unreal Championship is called Unreal Championship 2 The Liandri Conflict.
  • Splinter Cell, as the picture above indicates, has some idiosyncratic titling. The series goes as thus: Tom Clancy's Splinter Cell, Tom Clancy's Splinter Cell: Pandora Tomorrow, Tom Clancy's Splinter Cell: Chaos Theory, Tom Clancy's Splinter Cell: Double Agent, Tom Clancy's Splinter Cell: Essentials (which, despite the name, isn't a remake package with the original games), and Tom Clancy's Splinter Cell: Conviction.
    • Though to their credit, they never tried to mix numbers in with their subtitles. Considering how the naming schemes of some other series turn out, that is probably a good thing.
    • This was actually caused by Executive Meddling. Originally Chaos Theory was supposed to be the sequel to Splinter Cell and thus known as Splinter Cell 2. Pandora Tomorrow was only supposed to be an expansion pack to the original. When it was decided that Pandora Tomorrow would be a stand-alone title they released it without any numbering to avoid confusing people.
  • Grand Theft Auto, Grand Theft Auto 2, Grand Theft Auto III, then Grand Theft Auto: Vice City, Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas, Grand Theft Auto: Liberty City Stories, Grand Theft Auto: Vice City Stories, and then finally Grand Theft Auto IV.
    • You missed "Grand Theft Auto: 1969", "Grand Theft Auto: 1961", "Grand Theft Auto IV: The Lost and The Damned" and "Grand Theft Auto IV: The Ballad of Gay Tony." However, this naming convention has some sense; each numbered title started on a new engine9Until GTA V), while the rest were considered to be very large expansion packs. Each numbered title is also the beginning of a new story, with completely new characters, while games without numbered titles just act as prequels and reuse characters (so as to give them bigger backstories).
  • The original Tomb Raider series consists of Tomb Raider, Tomb Raider II, Tomb Raider III, then Tomb Raider: The Last Revelation, Tomb Raider Chronicles and Tomb Raider: The Angel of Darkness. The Crystal Dynamics Continuity Reboot of the franchise continues this trend, with Tomb Raider: Legend, Tomb Raider: Anniversary, and Tomb Raider: Underworld. Then it was rebooted again, with just "Tomb Raider".
  • The Silent Hill series has Silent Hill, Silent Hill 2, Silent Hill 3, then Silent Hill 4: The Room, Silent Hill: Ørigins (which is called Silent Hill Zero in Japan), Silent Hill: Homecoming, Silent Hill: Shattered Memories, and now the upcoming Silent Hill 8 (which is now going to be called Silent Hill: Downpour).
  • Prince of Persia. The first game was followed by the Sequel Prince of Persia 2: The Shadow and the Flame then Prince of Persia 3D followed, when the series jumped to 3D and a new story was begun. Four years later came Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time, starting a new story yet again, which continues in the direct sequels Prince of Persia: Warrior Within and Prince of Persia: The Two Thrones. Then, the story resets again, with Prince of Persia in 2008, to be continued in another two sequels apparently, the first of which is supposed to be called Prince of Persia: The Forgotten Sands.
    • Per The Other Wiki, Forgotten Sands is actually an Interquel set in the Sands of Time 'verse, taking place between that game and Warrior Within. The timing of the game's release and the cover art both suggest that this decision was made to make the game and the film more closely related.
  • The early Mega Man sequels were numbered with Roman numerals (at least on the title screens), but this became problematic when Capcom released a spin-off game for the SNES named Mega Man X (as in the letter "X", not a Roman numeral 10), which was followed by its own series of numbered sequels. Because of this, Capcom switched to Arabic numerals for the original series starting with Mega Man 8 in order to avoid any confusion, as the franchise eventually had a real Mega Man 10. This was never a problem in Japan, where the original Rockman games always used Arabic numerals.
    • While the games for the Game Boy shared the same names as the ones that were released for the NES (except the first one, which was titled Mega Man in Dr. Wily's Revenge), there were not actually ports of their corresponding NES games, but remixed versions that combined bosses from the corresponding NES game with those from its succeeding installment (i.e. Dr. Wily's Revenge has bosses from the first two NES games, the Game Boy version of II has bosses from the NES version of II and III, and so on). The only exception was the Game Boy version of Mega Man V, which features all new bosses instead of borrowing the ones from the NES games. The Japanese versions of these games were released under the Rockman World name, helping Japanese fans tell them apart.
  • Lampshaded in the fourth chapter of Tales of Monkey Island, with a souvenir pin reading "Trial of the Century II: Electric Voodooloo".
  • You would think Dragon Age would be going this way with the first game being called Dragon Age: Origins and the expansion being called Dragon Age: Origins: Awakening. But nope, in a reversal of Michael Bay's thoughts, the devs opted to call the sequel Dragon Age 2 just to make things less complicated on the audience.
  • The Fallout series had been getting on just fine without the need for any if these fancy subtitles: Fallout, Fallout 2, Fallout 3 and... Fallout: New Vegas. Oh. There was also a game with different gameplay that didn't fit into the chronology called Fallout Tactics: Brotherhood of Steel, and another, with yet a different style of gameplay, called just Fallout: Brotherhood of Steel with no "tactics".
    • Bethesda have explained that New Vegas isn't a sequel to 3, so it doesn't follow in number. Bethesda are apparently planning their own sequel at some point, so presumably that'll be 4
  • Oh, boy. Guilty Gear is chock full of these, too. The second Guilty Gear game is Guilty Gear X, and the X sure doesn't stand for the Roman numeral (apparently it's pronounced "Zex"). After that, it's Guilty Gear XX (pronounced "Igzex"). And then come its re-releases, #Reload (pronounced Sharp-Reload), Slash, and Λ Core (Accent Core). And Accent Core Plus, the updated release of an updated release (that's right, the full title is "Guilty Gear Igzex Accent Core Plus"). There's also Isuka, Judgment, and Dust Strikers (They aren't preceded by the XX, though), but they're more like Mission Pack Sequels. Guilty Gear X [By your side "G. Gear"] too.
    • Technically, the true sequel to Guilty Gear is Guilty Gear 2: Overture...
  • Ever wondered why the Leisure Suit Larry series jumped from III to V? After making III, series creator Al Lowe famously stated that there would never be a Larry IV. He kept his word. Kinda.
  • After Dwarf Fortress retroactively sequelized to follow the defunct Slaves to Armok: God of Blood, it is now Slaves to Armok: God of Blood Chapter II: Dwarf Fortress, subverting Exactly What It Says on the Tin since it doesn't feature Armok in any way and dwarves do not keep slaves.
    • Technically Dwarf Fortress is followed by yet another randomly subtitle, Histories of <synonym of greed> and <synonym of hard work>, ie. Slaves to Armok: God of Blood Chapter II: Dwarf Fortress: Histories of Gluttony and Determination.
  • Star Ocean games have Star Ocean, Star Ocean: The Second Story, Star Ocean: Blue Sphere, Star Ocean: Till the End of Time and Star Ocean: The Last Hope (simply titled Star Ocean 4 in Japan). The first two games were later remade under the titles Star Ocean: First Departure and Star Ocean: Second Evolution. Not to mention The Anime of the Game, Star Ocean EX, which is apparently based on The Second Story.
  • There were actually two Wonder Boy III games. The first, Monster Lair, is an In Name Only Shoot'Em Up sequel to the arcade version of Wonder Boy in Monster Land, which has a different ending than the SMS version, while the second, The Dragon's Trap (Dragon's Curse on the Turbo Grafx 16), is a direct sequel to the SMS version of Monster Land.
  • Contra Hard Corps was eventually followed by a "Contra"-less Hard Corps: Uprising.
  • The Total War Series is an interesting take on this, not only does it usually put the series name after the subtitle but it uses numbers and/or sub-subtitles for some games but not for others. In order of release the games go, Shogun: Total War, Shogun: Total War: Mongol Invasion, Medieval: Total War, Medieval: Total War: Viking Invasion, Rome: Total War, Rome: Total War: Barbarian Invasion, Rome: Total War: Alexander, Medieval II: Total War, Medieval II: Total War: Kingdoms, Empire: Total War, Napoleon: Total War and just to make the naming even more confusing Total War: Shogun 2
  • Track Mania, Trackmania Sunrise, Trackmania Nations, Trackmania United Forever, Trackmania Nations Forever... and the brand new Trackmania 2! (Not counting console spinoffs)
  • The Guitar Hero saga, only counting home consoles releases *deep breath*: Guitar Hero, Guitar Hero II, Guitar Hero: Rocks the 80's (spin-off), Guitar Hero III: Legends of Rock', Guitar Hero: Aerosmith(band-focused), Guitar Hero: World Tour, Guitar Hero: Metallica (again, band-focused), Guitar Hero: Smash Hits (another spin-off), Guitar Hero 5, Band Hero (yet another spin-off), Guitar Hero: Van Halen (yep, band-focused again) and Guitar Hero Warriors of Rock.
    • And there's the portable games: Guitar Hero: On Tour, Guitar Hero On Tour: Decades and Guitar Hero On Tour: Modern Hits.
  • The WWF Smackdown games start off with the first one and the second ones using numbers (Smackdown 2: Know Your Role), but as of the third one stopped using numbers, as of the sixth one started using the title "Smackdown vs. Raw" instead, and as of the seventh one started including the year a la Madden.
  • In Japan, the Samurai Spirits games in general have their own Word Salad Title such as II being "Shin Samurai Spirits: Haohmaru Jigokuhen" (True Samurai Spirits: Haohmaru's Vision of Hell), III is Samurai Spirits: Zankuro Musouken (Peerless Sword of Zankuro), IV is Samurai Spirits: Amakusa Kourin (Amakusa's Advent), and V is actually known as "Samurai Spirits Rei" (Samurai Spirits Zero). It helps to know that the order of the main games (I-V) is V, I, III, IV, II. The two SS 64 games take place after II, and Sen takes place after the 64 games.
  • The Shin Megami Tensei series isn't exactly the most understandable in terms of naming, but Persona 2 was released as a duology, Innocent Sin and Eternal Punishment, making Persona 3 and 4 the 4th and 5th in the series respectively
  • Theme Park was Exactly What It Says on the Tin: a management game in which you run a theme park. The title of the Spiritual Successor, Theme Hospital, made less sense.
  • Gargoyles Quest and Gargoyle's Quest II came out for the Game Boy and NES, respectively. They were followed by Demon's Crest on the Super NES. Their Japanese names weren't any better, the first two games being named Red Arremer I and II, and then the third game being called Demon's Blazon.
  • The Mario Kart series started out with Super Mario Kart, followed by Mario Kart 64. Then it went to subtitles with Mario Kart: Super Circuit (for Game Boy Advance) and Mario Kart: Double Dash!! (for Nintendo Gamecube). It then returned to Super Title 64 Advance with Mario Kart DS and Mario Kart Wii before finally falling into Numbered Sequels with Mario Kart 7 (for Nintendo 3DS).
  • Assassin's Creed Is sequels are: Assassin's Creed II, Assassin's Creed Brotherhood, Assassin's Creed Revelations, and finally Assassin's Creed III.
  • Gex was followed up by Gex: Enter the Gecko and then Gex 3: Deep Cover Gecko.
  • The Puzzle Game Tant-R had sequels named Ichidant-R and Sando-R. "Ichidan" means "more" and "sando" means "three times."
  • The Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha As Portable games, whose first and second games were "Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha As Portable: The Battle of Aces" and "Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha As Portable: The Gears of Destiny" respectively.
  • During the 90s, Electronic Arts released a series of helicopter-based shooters named the "Strike series". The series consists of Desert Strike, Jungle Strike, Urban Strike, Soviet Strike and Nuclear Strike.
  • Not counting the spinoffs Sonic seemed to make sense with Sonic the Hedgehog 1, 2 and 3. Then Sonic & Knuckles came out which was basically the second half of Sonic 3. Then things got confusing when they jumped over into 3D it was Sonic Adventure and then Sonic Adventure 2; however the Adventure title got dropped when Sonic Heroes appeared which was then followed up by Sonic the Hedgehog (2006). After that point the games have been a series of very loosely connected games with Sonic and The Secret Rings, Sonic and The Black Knight, Sonic Unleashed, Sonic Colors and Sonic Generations. Not forgetting the downloadable series Sonic 4: Episode 1 and Sonic 4: Episode 2.
  • The Mortal Kombat series started off with fairly standard numbering, even if it did switch from Roman Numerals to numbers between the second and third games, but it became more and more this trope as the series went on. The main games are: Mortal Kombat, Mortal Kombat II, Mortal Kombat 3 (re-released as Ultimate Mortal Kombat 3, and then the first three games were combined to make Mortal Kombat Trilogy), Mortal Kombat 4 (re-released as Mortal Kombat Gold), Mortal Kombat Deadly Alliance, Mortal Kombat Deception, Mortal Kombat Armageddon, Mortal Kombat vs. DC Universe. The most recent game in the series is just called Mortal Kombat, as it's a Continuity Reboot. This, of course isn't getting into the side-games, Mortal Kombat Mythologies Sub Zero, Mortal Kombat Special Forces and Mortal Kombat Shaolin Monks, which only serve to create even more confusion for new fans of the series. To further increase the problem, the film, and it's sequels all had their own (number free) names, as did the live-action series, the animated seires and the web series.
  • New Super Mario Bros has two sequels: New Super Mario Bros Wii, and New Super Mario Bros 2 for the

Nintendo 3DS. NSMB2 is actually the third game.


  • Parodied in this Sinfest strip: "Reloaded Full Throttle with a Vengeance"!
  • Parodied in this Hark! A Vagrant. Kate Beaton apparently wants "The Legend of Curly's Gold" to be the next "Electric Boogaloo".

Web Original

  • Homestar Runner's parody of such trends was Dangeresque 2: This Time, It's Not Dangeresque 1
    • And Dangeresque 3: The Criminal Projective, which was released as part of Strong Bad's Cool Game for Attractive People. Not forgetting the original, which was titled Dangeresque 1: Dangeresque, Too? and the prequel Dangeresque 0: The Prequel Begins.
  • Chaos Fighters has a few novels with such titles. Chaos Fighters II is a major offender with subtitles Cyberion Strike and its sequel Chemical Siege. However, it helps that the former is the name of the final attack launched by the big bad of the novel while the latter refers to the chemical hollows which pollutes the city of Murio. Both titles are set as a Time Skip to the main series.
  • The Angry Video Game Nerd gives a long diatribe about both this topic and Market-Based Title.
  • Discused in Super Mario Guy RPG

 Mario/Peter Griffin: By the way Mallow, which movie had the exploding arrows?"

Mallow/Chris Griffin: Rambo

Mario: Rambo, ok it was Rambo, and then was Rambo 2, right?

Geno/Brian Griffin: Actually its full title is Rambo:First Blood Part 2

Mario:First Blood Part 2? That doesn't make any sence.

Mallow: Yeah they should have called it Second Blood

Mario: Seriosly, why do movie sequels have to screw around with the titles?

Geno: You mean how Call of Duty Modern Warfare 2 is actually Call of Duty 5?

Mario: Yeah, exactly.


  "ARROW'D 2! ELECTRIC BOOGA- wait a sec..."

  • In an OOC Q&A, Jadusable replied to a question asking about the name of the movie he's filming with "ben 2: electric boogaloo." Here is a transcript of that Q&A if you want it.

Western Animation

  • The sequel to Avatar: The Last Airbender was going to be called The Last Airbender: The Legend of Korra. Not only did it make no sense whatsoever because Korra isn't the last Airbender (she's not even a native airbender), it's a mouthful. Stranger yet, it was originally going to be called Avatar: The Legend of Korra (which would have made a lot more sense), but they had to change it due to legal issues with a certain movie. Prior to release, it was shortened down to simply The Legend of Korra.
  • Happened to The Transformers in Japan; while Headmasters had sense, there's no excuse for Super-God Masterforce or Victory. They did this very often, spawning no less than fourteen differently named series (not all televised, or even given fiction at all; Operation Combination is a toyline only, for example.) in Japan, though "only" seven in English-speaking countries.
  • Played for laughs in Danny Phantom. When the family temporarily get filthy rich, they move. Jack wants to call their new home "Fenton Works 2: This Time, it's Personal".
  • Total Drama Island's second season was called Total Drama Action (shift to movie-themed challenges on an abandoned film lot) and the third season was named Total Drama World Tour (traveling the world and spoofing musicals). Season four will be titled Total Drama Revenge of the Island (original location, different cast).


  • CSToys The Alternatives is an oddly named Spin-Off of a live show done by a toystore in Japan.
  • Microsoft Windows 7 is an oddly numbered release. Since Windows 3.x, Microsoft abandoned the numbering system but released more than four iterations of Windows, including Windows 95, NT, 98, 2000, Millennium Edition, XP, Server 2003, Vista before returning to the numbering system with Windows 7. Even if we are selective in which editions we count as actual significant releases, the latest Windows should still be higher than the 7th major release.
    • Windows 95, 98, and ME were all technically the same operating systems. 98 and ME just being feature added versions (95 = 4.0, 98=4.10, ME = 4.90). Also, NT isn't a single release. NT 4.0 was concurrent with Win95. Windows 2000 is NT 5.0. XP is NT 5.1. Server 2003 is 5.2. Vista is NT 6.0. Windows 7 is NT 6.1. None of this is clear from the labelling, as the release names are driven by Marketing and not technical concerns. Still counts as Oddly Named Sequels of course.
      • Actually, it would be NT 4.1 - NT was first released as 3.1, to match the version number of the regular Windows releases(the codebase had also started as OS/2 version 3).
      • Maybe 7 was simply chosen because it is a deliberate lucky number in many states.
  • The Xbox, followed by the Xbox 360, probably to suggest equivalence to the PlayStation 3 and Nintendo Wii (at the time still known by its code name, Revolution).
    • And of course the Nintendo series of consoles: Nintendo Entertainment System, Super Nintendo Entertainment System, Nintendo 64, Nintendo Game Cube, and Nintendo Wii. And then there's the portables (Nintendo Game Boy Advance SP Micro D Si Lite XL?).
      • Mostly averted with the upcoming Wii U.
  • Similarly, try to figure out how old a camera is by model numbers. Sometimes these model numbers will change depending on what country the camera is being sold in. Even for the more expensive Digital SLR cameras such as the Rebels, the 60D, and the 1DmkIV, the model numbers don't seem to do much to tell you the cameras' relation to eachother, aside from additional digits in the EOS model numbers implying that the camera is progressively cheaper (A few years ago, a Canon Rebel EOS 450D ran for about seven or eight hundred bucks. The Canon 1DmkII at the time ran for something close to five thousand dollars.)
    • Canon's release scheme is: the more numbers in a name, the cheaper the camera (the 1000D or XS is the cheapest option, where the 1D is the most expensive); the higher the number in the series, the newer (20D is older than the 60D). The single-digit cameras are the top of the line pro-bodies with top of the line tech at the time of the release, many of which have had multiple iterations (7D; 5D vs. 5D Mk. II; 1D vs. 1D Mk. IV vs. 1Ds Mk. III)
  • The Darwin's Soldiers short story Card of Ten is supposed to have a sequel. The sequel is named Ship of State.
  • After the Radeon 9000 series, ATI changed to card numbers beginning with X. When Direct X 10 came around and ATI redesigned their chips from the ground-up, the numbering started at HD 2000 and went from there(meaning that unless this trope comes into play again, the upcoming Southern Islands generation will only have two letter to distinguish it from the original Radeons). Also applies to the names given to the GPU chips themselves: with the Evergreen/HD 5000 series, ATI dropped the rXXX chip naming scheme in favor of just using the development code names.
  • The Palm pilot series of handheld organizers: "Pilot" "Palm Pilot" "Palm III" "Palm V" and then "Palm IV"
    • Similarly, the Voodoo line of graphics accelerators also skipped 4 and then went back to it as a budget variation of the Voodoo 5 (and then there's the Voodoo Banshee).
  • Desktop IBM and compatible computers. The early versions were named based on their Intel microprocessor chip number: 8086 and 8088, followed by the 80186 (which almost nobody ever even heard of, superceeded almost immediately by) 80286, 80386, and 80486. Intel complained that AMD and other knockoffs were using their names but were informed that one couldn't trademark a number, so with the 80586 they changed the name to "Pentium," followed by the Pentium II, III, etc.
    • 80286-80486 also came in "SX" versions, the SX being a cheaper (and less powerful) version - except that it was exactly the same chip, it just had some of the programming deactivated.
  • Ubuntu uses a version name based on the year and month of release, with major releases every six months. This is then followed by an alliterative adjective-noun name with the first letters going up through alphabetical order for each release. For example, 10.10 Maverick Meerkat was released in October of 2010, followed next April by 11.04 Natty Narwhal and then 11.10 Oneric Ocelot.
  1. Yes, "Alien to the third power", NOT "Alien 3"
  2. Crystal Trap
  3. 58 Minutes (in order) To Live
  4. A Day In Hell
  5. Return to Hell
  6. with the cancelled fifth installment Batman Unchained