Created By: tetraploidDecember 30, 2011 Last Edited By: ArivneJune 1, 2013

Stand-alone Expansion Pack

An expansion pack that is also a standalone game.

Name Space:
Main
Page Type:
Trope
Needs More Examples

Sometimes, when continuing the story of a previous game, a developer will release a stand-alone sequel with a completely new platform. Sometimes, they'll just release an Expansion Pack, merely adding new features to the original game.

And sometimes, they'll want to have their cake and eat it, too. This trope arises when a game serves a dual purpose as both an expansion pack and a stand-alone game.

Reasons for doing this include:

Compare and contrast: Expansion Pack, Mission Pack Sequel.


Examples:

  • City Of Heroes has City of Villains, a game which is like City Of Heroes, except you play as a villain in a new setting. There is Player Versus Player between the two. Both games have now been combined into a single package

  • Guild Wars has Nightfall and Factions, which each introduce a new setting and two new classes.

  • The big Expansion Pack for Dragon Age Origins, Awakening, can be played as a standalone story (with a completely new cast of characters), if you don't want to import your Origins character. Also, two DLC addons, while tying into the Origins story, are standalone campaigns with a different main characters (Leliana in Leliana's Song and Darkspawn Wanguard in Darkspawn Chronicles).
Community Feedback Replies: 15
  • December 30, 2011
    Stratadrake
    Holy Contrived Portmanteaus, Batman! Needs A Better Title.
  • December 31, 2011
    Koveras
    • The big Expansion Pack for Dragon Age: Origins, Awakening, can be played as a standalone story (with a completely new cast of characters), if you don't want to import your Origins character. Also, two DLC addons, while tying into the Origins story, are standalone campaigns with a different main characters (Leliana in Leliana's Song and Darkspawn Vanguard in Darkspawn Chronicles).
  • December 31, 2011
    captainpat
    Sorry but that name is terrible. Stand Alone Expansion Pack or something else
  • December 31, 2011
    Duncan
    Portal to the Half Life series?
  • December 31, 2011
    Bisected8
    Being made with the same engine doesn't make it the same game....
  • January 1, 2012
    Stratadrake
    What about Mission Pack Sequel?
  • January 1, 2012
    tetraploid
    @captainpat & Stratadrake: The sad part is, I didn't make up the name. According to The Other Wiki, N C Soft actually used the term to describe City of Villains. Still a terrible name, though, I'll change that.

    @ Duncan, Bisected8, & Stratadrake: Mission Pack Sequel, to my understanding atleast, is when the game is very similar to the previous game, but works only as a stand alone. If I misread the article, then I think we should atleast subdivide the trope into those that work as Expansion Packs and those that don't.
  • January 1, 2012
    TBTabby
    The different versions of Munchkin are technically seperate games, but since they all follow the same basic rule set, they decks can be combined and played with all at once, making them expansion packs for each other.
  • May 29, 2013
    Knight9910
    Nevermind.
  • May 30, 2013
    StarSword
    Simulation Games:
    • X3: Terran Conflict has an entirely separate installation from X3: Reunion and doesn't require you to own X3R to play. TC's expansion pack Albion Prelude is not this trope, however.
  • May 30, 2013
    Melkior
    • When the Neverwinter Nights 1 RPG was first released, it only allowed players to reach level 20. When the expansion pack Hordes of the Underdark was released, it was a separate campaign module running under the same game engine but also upgraded the game to allow extra classes and skills and increase the level cap to 40.
  • May 31, 2013
    TrueShadow1
    • Touhou Hisoutensoku, is an expansion pack to Scarlet Weather Rhapsody with 5 new playable characters and 3 new story modes. It can also be played separately. However, doing so will only let you play as 9 of the 20 characters.
  • June 1, 2013
    marcoasalazarm
    Dunno if they would fit here as a whole (since at least one or two stretch the term 'expansion pack', I guess), but here goes:

    Half Life has a pair of expansions which provide a number of stand-alone missions with all-new characters, both of which happen at the same time as the regular campaign with Gordon Freeman. They are Blue Shift (with you playing as Black Mesa security guard Barney Calhoun) and Opposing Force (which has you playing as Marine Adrian Shepard).

    Far Cry 3 has Far Cry 3 Blood Dragon-whole new campaign with whole new character with some mechanics of the flagship game changed slightly to represent the whole 'cybernetic super-soldier' trope as best as possible and a pretty cheesy plot (Affectionate Parody of everything action sci-fi from The Eighties).
  • June 1, 2013
    Kayube
    New Super Luigi U was originally announced as DLC for New Super Mario Bros U, but eventually became one of these as well.
  • June 1, 2013
    Thebiguglyalien

Three days must pass before this YKTTW is Launchworthy or Discardable