[[quoteright:256:[[VideoGame/BalloonFight http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/s_Balloon_Fight_DS.jpg]]]]
[[caption-width-right:256:If only they were all this easy to spot.]]

->'''Radd:''' I don't get this sequel.\\
'''Sequel Radd:''' Huh?\\
'''Radd:''' It's not much like my game at all. The rules are too different. I mean, you can stand on top of enemies? And you can't shoot Radd Beams??? What's the deal with that? It's almost like the humans just copied our characters into a totally unrelated video game!
->'''Sequel Radd:''' What makes you think they'd do stuff like that?
-->-- ''Webcomic/KidRadd'', [[http://kidradd.muddasheep.com/kidradd_guillaume/comic357.htm#title "Hit Me"]]

This is the practice of inserting a work into a franchise which it was not originally intended for, usually because of the [[CashCowFranchise marketing value of the name]]. This is usually the result of ExecutiveMeddling, or else a dangerous similarity between a work-in-progress and a published and copyrighted one. Usually easy to spot, since the setting or style is noticeably different.

If the decision to doll up the installment is made soon enough, attempts can be made to make the installment more like the series it's being installed into. The differences between setting and style will then be toned down.

If a dolled-up installment is sufficiently successful and accepted, it can trigger LostInImitation: that is, later intentional installments of the series will take on characteristics that began with the Dolled-Up Installment.

It's common with {{Licensed Game}}s. In some cases, all the programmers do is replace the sprites, for a game that ties into the source material InNameOnly. A True Dolled-Up Video Game Installment will at least fit a bit more seamlessly into the franchise, such as with games dolled-up to fit into other, already established game franchises. Compare ''VideoGame/SuperMarioBros2'', for example, to ''VideoGame/YoNoid!''.

Subtrope of WhatCouldHaveBeen.

Might overlap with MarketBasedTitle, if the new title puts the work in a franchise [[GermansLoveDavidHasselhoff popular in the country]].

The opposite of a SpiritualSuccessor, where the official franchise may be different, but the installment has a clear heritage.

For when it's the ''box cover'' that makes the work look as though it's something it's not, see AmericanKirbyIsHardcore. See also InNameOnly, TranslationMatchmaking, RecycledScript. DivorcedInstallment is the opposite, where a work originally intended to be part of a series or franchise is revised to become a standalone work.


[[folder:Anime and Manga]]
* The Italian dub of ''[[Anime/FutariWaPrettyCureSplashStar Futari wa Pretty Cure Splash* Star]]'' was going to be dolled up as a sequel '''to its own AlternateContinuity''', the original ''Anime/FutariWaPrettyCure''. Apparently, "Nagisa and Honoka" looked different because of a PlotRelevantAgeUp... even though Saki and Mai are ''younger'' than the old heroines left off at the end of ''Max Heart''. Luckily they changed idea. The new heroines were {{Expies}} of the original duo to the point that saying it was them under new animation styles would have worked ''quite'' well, at least until the team-up movies started. In the ''end'' it's lucky that they changed their minds.
* ''{{Anime/Robotech}}'' was an amalgamation of three different series into one; ''Anime/SuperDimensionFortressMacross'', ''Anime/SuperDimensionCavalrySouthernCross'', and ''Anime/GenesisClimberMospeada''. None of these have anything in common, other than TransformingMecha and a similar artistic style. The ''Robotech'' movie also added scenes from ''Anime/Megazone23'', tacked onto footage from ''Southern Cross'' (even creator Carl Macek thought this was a dumb idea at the time, and so did the handful of viewers who saw one of the test releases).
* The first season of ''Anime/{{Voltron}}'' was the American adaptation of ''Anime/GoLion'', while the second was an adaptation of ''Anime/DairuggerXV''; they were unrelated, other than being CombiningMecha series involving a FiveManBand (in the latter's case, three ''separate'' Five Man Bands). Downplayed in that the two series were in the same universe, but [[NonLinearSequel not the same part]]. Lion Voltron was the Voltron of the Far Universe, Vehicle Voltron was of the Near Universe, and an unproduced third series using ''Lightspeed Electroid Albegas'' would have had Gladiator Voltron of the Middle Universe.
* ''Ninja Resurrection'' wasn't a sequel to ''Anime/NinjaScroll'', but you could be forgiven if the box text and the distributor misled you. The only similarity was the main character's name, Jubei. ''Ninja Scroll's'' protagonist is an homage to Yagyu Jubei, one of the most famous ninja and folk heroes in Japanese history. ''Ninja Resurrection'', based on the novel ''Makai Tensho'', actually uses Yagyu Jubei as its protagonist. Also, it's not even ''called'' ''Ninja Resurrection'' in Japan. ADV Films, the US distributor, changed the title, added the subtitle "The Return of Jubei," and marketed it to make it look like a sequel. Many viewers were furious when they found out, but the deception made it a big financial success anyway. Ironically, it sold better than the official ''Anime/NinjaScrollTheSeries'' did.
* The Italian version of the volleyball anime ''Anime/AttackerYou'' made the main character You into the cousin of Kozue Ayuhara, star of ''Manga/AttackNumberOne'', another famous volleyball anime. The two shows have, of course, nothing to do with each other besides being about volleyball.
* Similar to the example above, there's ''Manga/GanbareKickers''. In the Italian and French versions, it's mentioned that the main character Kakeru comes from Syutetsu, Genzo Wakabayashi's old school from ''Manga/CaptainTsubasa''. In reality, there's no relation between the two series, except that both are sport animes about UsefulNotes/AssociationFootball.
* A milder example: The Italian release of ''Manga/DigimonVTamer01'', which is completely unrelated to the anime except for the main character being Taichi Yagami, tried to pass it off as a midquel set between ''Anime/DigimonAdventure'' and ''Anime/DigimonAdventure02''.
* ''Anime/GatchamanCrowds'' has been accused of this by [[BrokenBase disappointed fans]] of the original ''Anime/ScienceNinjaTeamGatchaman''. Whether this is true is hard to determine, but it's certainly an extreme case of InNameOnly--a few names and one CatchPhrase carried over, but otherwise the shows are completely unrelated, the original being a straight superhero show and ''Crowds'' being an extremely {{postmodern}} take on the concept of superheroes and modern life in general. Note that the [[http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/tropes_gatchaman_crowds_main_1751.jpg cover art]] actually puts "Crowds" in big letters with "Gatchaman" underneath it.

* In the auto industry, this is known as [[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rebadging rebadging]] or badge engineering, taking a single car and selling it across multiple brands with only a few changes (mostly cosmetic and trim) across an automaker's different brands. Sometimes it works well; the famed Mercury Cougar (in its first two generations, at least) and Pontiac Firebird pony cars were based on the Ford Mustang and Chevrolet Camaro, respectively, while many cars sold internationally have had {{Market Based Title}}s in different countries. When poorly-done, however, it can be disastrous; the notorious Cadillac Cimmaron (essentially a rebadged Chevy Cavalier that was in no state to be sold as a luxury car) nearly destroyed the Cadillac brand in TheEighties. Malaysian automotive firm Proton also gained notoriety for producing what are essentially rebadged versions of popular Mitsubishi models. They are significantly cheaper than their Japanese cousins, but are occasionally derided for being unoriginal and shoddy at worst.

[[folder:Comic Books]]
* It was a common occurrence in American comics to [[RemixComic alter comic scripts (and sometimes already drawn stories!)]] made for one series to another one when needed; one example was a ''Literature/JohnCarterOfMars'' story converted into a ''Franchise/StarWars'' fill-in issue by Creator/MarvelComics.
** Similarly, some of the ''Franchise/ConanTheBarbarian'' stories written by Creator/RoyThomas for Creator/MarvelComics were adaptations of novels by Creator/GardnerFox about ''his'' barbarian hero, {{Kothar}}. Change a few proper nouns, and presto!
** This goes back to the Golden Age, actually. There is evidence that some stories were hastily rewritten to accommodate various in-house situations (at least one very late Golden Age Green Lantern story has him so OOC that it must have originally been a Batman story, and at least two All-Star adventures were rewritten with cast changes).
** Marvel sometimes did this with reprints of old comics from the 1950's. For instance, one sci-fi/horror story had an unnamed scientist character changed to a young [[Comicbook/AntMan Hank Pym]] when reprinted, while an issue of ''Menace'' had a nondescript foreign spy changed to an agent of HYDRA. One ''Strange Tales'' story about astronauts from the U.S. and U.S.S.R. who mistake each other for aliens was altered to instead have the characters be from {{SHIELD}} and Comicbook/{{HYDRA}}.
* Even though you don't notice it when you read it, the Franchise/SpiderMan classic ''ComicBook/KravensLastHunt'' started out as a Wonder Man/Grim Reaper story. When that was rejected, writer J. M. [=DeMatteis=] reworked it into a Batman/Joker story and submitted it to DC. When that was rejected for containing too many elements similar to another story then in the works (i. e. ''The Killing Joke''), [=DeMatteis=] reworked it again into a story featuring Batman and Hugo Strange. But that was also rejected, and so he finally hit upon the idea to use the story for Spider-Man.
* In the 1970s, Jim Starlin and Steve Englehart created Shang-Chi, a new Asian martial-arts character, for Creator/MarvelComics. Because Marvel had recently acquired the rights to Literature/FuManchu, it was decided that Shang-Chi would be Fu Manchu's son.
** And now that Marvel no longer holds the rights to the Fu Manchu character, it is unlikely that we will ever see an "Essential Master of Kung Fu" on the shelves. Drat.
*** Marvel never actually had the rights in the first place; they believed incorrectly that he was a PublicDomainCharacter- this was half-true and a ''very'' complicated issue, but it boils down to certain Literature/FuManchu stories being in the public domain while others aren't, and the copyright varies from country to country.
** Marvel's been using Shang-Chi's father as a villain again for some time -- he came back in an early MAX version of the franchise, for example -- but they avoid calling him "Fu Manchu" (using nicknames or supposed "real" names instead) and they never depict his face unless it's masked or, as in Secret Avengers, mutilated and rotting. They did much the same in the 1990s, using a visually altered version of Fah Lo Suee in a story but only ever referring to her by a newly-coined (Marvel-owned) nickname. Note that Nayland Smith and other Rohmer-original characters like Karamaneh, who did show up when Marvel had the license, simply don't appear anymore.
* ''[[ComicBook/TheDefenders Fearless Defenders]]'' was originally not going to be called that, as it was a spin-off of the ''Fearless'' mini-series from ''Comicbook/FearItself''. WordOfGod states that Marvel slapped ''Defenders'' onto the title in order to boost sales, even though the new team had ''nothing'' to do with any of the prior incarnations of the group other than having Valkyrie as a member.
* In the 90's, writer [[Creator/ChristopherPriestComics Christopher Priest]] pitched a Creator/DCComics series called ''The Avenger'', which would've starred a teen superhero struggling with the realities of young adulthood. At some point during development, someone decided that the idea would work better as a LegacyCharacter series centered around the Ray, one of the original ''Comicbook/FreedomFighters'', and thus the 90's ''The Ray'' series was born.
* Atlee from ''Comicbook/PowerGirl'' was going to be an original character before Dan Didio convinced Justin Gray and Jimmy Palmiotti to make her the new Terra instead.
* ''ComicBook/{{Runaways 2015}}'' was originally pitched as an original series with no connection to the old ''ComicBook/{{Runaways}}'' series, but then Marvel supposedly realized that they were about to lose the trademark to the name "Runaways", and thus slapped it on the new series. Apparently Molly was only added to give it a connection to the original.
* "The Case of the Vanishing Vehicle" in ''ComicBook/TheMazeAgency'' #3 started life as a script Mike. W. Barr wrote to submit to ''Series/{{Banacek}}'' before the series was cancelled. This explains why the plot deals with an 'impossible' theft, rather than a murder like the rest of the series.

* The commentary track for ''Film/{{Aliens}}'' reveals this trope was in play. When asked to do a sequel to ''Film/{{Alien}}'', Creator/JamesCameron wrote an outline of his thoughts for a film, which was actually based on something he wrote a few months earlier with the Alien characters dropped in (it helped that it fit with what the producers had already thought about putting in a sequel).
* ''Film/{{Adrift}}'', despite maintaining its original title in Europe and Australia, was retitled ''Open Water 2: Adrift'' in the United States despite the only thing it has in common with ''Film/OpenWater'' is that both feature people stuck in the middle of the ocean and the focus of the first film being ''sharks'' of which there are ''none'' in the "sequel" (the trailers of ''Adrift'' tease this by throwing in a "Something touched my leg" line, which was just a false alarm). Creator/{{Lionsgate}} did it again in 2017 with ''Cage Dive'': While it retained its original title in some foreign markets, in the US it was rebranded as ''Open Water 3: Cage Dive''. Again the only connection with the first film was people being stuck in the ocean, though this one at least has sharks in it unlike ''Adrift''.
* ''Film/{{Cloverfield}}'':
** ''Film/TenCloverfieldLane'' originated a script called ''The Cellar''. After Bad Robot optioned the script, it was re-tooled into a 'spiritual successor' to ''Cloverfield''. The film's eventual name was unknown even [[http://www.latimes.com/entertainment/herocomplex/la-et-hc-cloverfield-lane-production-20160311-story.html to its stars]] until well into post-production. The big change is that, in the original script, [[spoiler:Michelle escapes and drives towards Chicago, and finds a nuclear attack has taken place, rather than an alien invasion]].
** ''Film/TheCloverfieldParadox'' is also an example, but unlike ''Lane'', this movie was written ''and'' shot as a standalone film called ''The God Particle''. The decision to ReTool the movie into a ''Cloverfield'' sequel was made well into production, and rewrites and reshoots have taken place. Originally, the experiment was to search for the Higgs boson, which [[ItCanThink did NOT want to be found]], only one mention if it remains in the final cut.
* ''Film/DieHard'' is in a unique position in that all of its sequels are based on source material completely unrelated to the novel that ''Die Hard'' was based on.
** ''Film/DieHard2'' was an adaptation of a novel by Walter Wager called ''58 Minutes'', which focused on an off-duty cop who has to stop a group of terrorists at an airport. The plot and characters were reworked to include the [=McClane=] character, while adding more action sequences.
** ''Film/DieHardWithAVengeance'' was based on an original screenplay titled ''Simon Says''. It was also considered for use as ''Film/LethalWeapon4''.
** ''Film/LiveFreeOrDieHard'' (also known as ''Die Hard 4.0'') was based on a combination of a magazine article titled "A Farewell to Arms" and an original screenplay titled ''[=WW3.com=]''.
** ''Film/AGoodDayToDieHard'' is about the closest there's been to a ''Die Hard'' film actually beginning life as a ''Die Hard'' film. But even so, the screenplay was a rejected one for the 4th film.
** ''Die Hard'' itself was something of [[DivorcedInstallment an inversion]]: the novel it was based on -- ''Nothing Lasts Forever'' -- was a sequel to the novel ''The Detective'', which was made into a movie starring Music/FrankSinatra. The film version, therefore, was originally going to be an instalment in a budding series. But Sinatra didn't want to do it (he was 73 at the time), so they rewrote the script to feature a new protagonist: [[Film/{{Commando}} John Matrix]]. When Arnold passed on a ''Commando'' sequel, it was retooled again as an original work.
* At least two of the ''Film/DirtyHarry'' sequels started life as unrelated scripts. ''Film/TheEnforcer'' was a script called "Moving Target," based on the Symbionese Liberation Army, which became a ''Dirty Harry'' story after Eastwood read and liked it. Similarly, ''Film/SuddenImpact'' was intended as a standalone vehicle for Sondra Locke, before being reworked into a sequel.
* ''Film/EbirahHorrorOfTheDeep'' AKA ''Franchise/{{Godzilla}} Vs The Sea Monster'' was originally going to feature Film/KingKong instead of Godzilla. This becomes quite evident when Godzilla starts ACTING like Film/KingKong. He is revived by electricity (like Film/KingKong in ''Film/KingKongVsGodzilla'', and very unlike the Godzilla of that movie). Yes, he even [[InterspeciesRomance shows interest in a female human]].
* Averted by the ''Franchise/{{Halloween}}'' series. Though ''Film/HalloweenIIISeasonOfTheWitch'' did not feature Michael Myers, it was the intent of the director to make a different horror movie each year.
* ''Film/Jaws3D'' started life as an unrelated shark exploitation screenplay that involved a shark swimming upstream and getting stuck in a lake, but was hurriedly reworked into the third entry in the ''Jaws'' series after the producers' original pitch -- a spoof named ''Jaws 3, People 0'' -- was rejected by the studio.
* ''Film/PiratesOfTheCaribbeanOnStrangerTides'' is actually based on [[Literature/OnStrangerTides a book]] with no connection to the franchise beyond this movie.
* ''The Haunted Palace'' (1963) was an adaptation of an Creator/HPLovecraft story, and was originally titled ''The Haunted Village''. But because its director (Creator/RogerCorman) and star (Creator/VincentPrice) were better known for Creator/EdgarAllanPoe adaptations, the [[Creator/AmericanInternationalPictures production company]] [[ExecutiveMeddling decreed]] that a few lines of Poe's poem be tacked onto the film, and the title changed to match.
* ''The Conqueror Worm'', a historical drama that contains one of Vincent Price's best performances, is an even more egregious case: known as ''Film/WitchfinderGeneral'' in the U.K., it was renamed for the American market and overdubbed with Price reading some lines of Poe's poem to seem to stitch it onto the Creator/RogerCorman series.
* Another, particularly shameless, example featuring Vincent Price: the German dub of the film ''Scream and Scream Again'' renamed his villain Dr. Browning as Dr. Mabuse, and marketed it as an installment in Germany's long-established [[Film/DrMabuseTheGambler Dr. Mabuse franchise]].
* The 2004 film version of ''Film/IRobot'' was initially based on an unrelated screenplay, ''Hardwired'', before being given the title and some surface features of [[Literature/IRobot the short story collection]] by Creator/IsaacAsimov. Granted, the dolling-up process did incorporate something like a Hollywoodized version of Asimov's Three Laws, and the final plot somewhat resembles a mish-mash of Asimov's "The Evitable Conflict" and ''Literature/TheCavesOfSteel''. Still a painfully awkward fit with Asimov's stories, though, and nothing excuses making Susan Calvin into a hot young sidekick. (Contrary to what some have said, the film bears even less resemblance to [[Literature/AdamLink Eando Binder's "I, Robot"]] than Asimov's story collection, except in the basic "robot kills someone" sense.)
* ''Film/OceansTwelve'' started out life as a stand-alone heist flick about two duelling master thieves that got the ''Film/OceansEleven'' gang shoehorned into it when the first film's massive popularity required a sequel as quick as possible. The role of the protagonist was split between Danny (master thief), Rusty (relationship with Europol agent), and (to a certain extent) Linus.
* ''Film/TheRageCarrie2'' was originally written as a standalone film titled ''The Curse''. It was retitled and rewritten presumably because somebody pointed out [[FollowTheLeader the obvious similarities]] to ''Literature/{{Carrie}}'' and decided that calling it a sequel would not only allow it to cash in on the success of the original, but would help it avoid accusations of UsefulNotes/{{plagiarism}}.
* The DVD release of the '90s made-for-video movie ''Film/RobotWars'' (no relation to the TV show of the same name) calls it ''Robot Jox 2''. It doesn't take place in the same universe as ''Film/RobotJox'' but has a similar look due to both being handled by the same effects company.
* ''Franchise/{{Saw}}'':
** ''Film/SawII'' was based on an old script that was turned down repeatedly for being "too violent" and eventually picked up because ''Film/SawI'' was a big hit and the script had similarities. According to writer/director Darren Lynn Bousman, the finished product bears little resemblance to his original script beyond character names.
** [[DivorcedInstallment Inverted]] when a script originally meant to be a ''Franchise/{{Saw}}'' prequel was, due to lack of interest by the producers, altered into a stand alone movie, ''Film/TheCollector''.
* When ''Film/AShotInTheDark'' was adapted into a movie from a stage play (which was itself translated from French), the only seemingly DefectiveDetective Paul Sevigne was replaced with Creator/PeterSellers' slapstick DetectivePatsy, Jacques Clouseau. This sequel to ''Film/ThePinkPanther1963'' shares little more than the title and the premise with the play. The ArtisticTitle sequence of ''A Shot in the Dark'' also sets it aside from other movies in ''Franchise/ThePinkPanther'' series by featuring neither the cartoon panther nor the famous InstrumentalThemeTune (the movie has its own InstrumentalThemeTune).
** On the other hand, the film actually ''introduced'' several major elements of the franchise not present in the first film (Cato, Dreyfuss and of course Clouseau as the protagonist), and is considered by many to be the best entry in the series.
*** Not to mention Clouseau's comic accent, which was absent in the original.
** Then there's the animated Pink Panther theatrical shorts and television series which is about an actual pink panther.
* Creator/RobertRodriguez once planned a stand-alone movie about kids going inside a video game, which he later turned into ''Film/SpyKids 3-D: Game Over''. This should come as no surprise considering how the decidedly not spy-oriented premise was haphazardly shoehorned into the ''Spy Kids'' verse.
** In Italy the film was promoted as "Missione 3D: Game Over", without any hint it was part of the Spy Kids franchise, perhaps for the better.
* ''Film/HelloMaryLouPromNightII'' was originally a film unrelated to the Prom Night franchise called ''The Haunting of Hamilton High'' before it was unlucky enough to get picked up by the original Prom Night's distributor, who realized that they had another prom-themed horror film on their hands, and retooled it to cash in on Prom Night's success.
* ''Film/StarshipTroopers'' had little to do with the novel on which it was allegedly based. The rights to the name were bought ''after'' the script was written.
* All of the sequels to ''Film/{{Troll}}'' are InNameOnly sequels. ''Film/{{Troll 2}}'' was originally titled ''Goblins'', but for whatever reason, the distributors just slapped ''Troll 2'' on the movie, despite the lack of trolls. There are also two movies with the name ''Troll 3'', neither of which has anything to do with the first two.
* Similarly, ''House III: The Horror Show'' was simply a haunting movie called ''Film/TheHorrorShow'', but the distributors wanted to cash in on the success of the first two films. That's why it's the only sequel without a pun title (e.g. ''Film/HouseIITheSecondStory'', ''[[Film/HouseIV House IV: The Repossession]]'').
** Ironically, both ''The Horror Show'' and ''House II'' were included among the Italian InNameOnly sequels to ''Film/TheEvilDead1981'', as parts 6 and 7. TheMockbuster parts 3 (as they were made before ''Film/ArmyOfDarkness'') were released overseas with titles hiding those intentions - ''Film/LaCasa3'' became ''Ghosthouse'', ''La Casa 4'' (with Creator/DavidHasselhoff and [[Film/TheExorcist Linda Blair]]!) became ''Witchery'' and ''La Casa 5'', ''Beyond Darkness''.
* All of the ''Watchers'' "sequels" are, in fact, remakes (save for part 3). This makes a ''Watchers'' movie marathon an exercise in redundancy.
* ''Film/HellraiserDeader'' was originally intended to be completely unrelated to the series, despite there being a good bit of fan material on the disk related to it.
* Films in the ''Curse'' series have nothing to do with each other (aside from the body-horror element returning in at least part 2).
* The TV movie ''Malibu Shark Attack'' was re-titled for some DVD releases as ''Megashark In Malibu'', with the tagline "the legend returns", presumably an attempt to cash in on the dubious fame of ''Film/MegaSharkVsGiantOctopus''. To make things even more unusual, the title card in the film itself reads ''Shark Attack of the Malibu'' in this version.
* The ''Film/BruceAlmighty'' sequel ''Film/EvanAlmighty'' was initially written as a completely separate script called ''The Passion of the Ark''. After Universal spent a few million on the script, the script was reworked into a sequel due to the success of ''Bruce Almighty'' combined with Creator/SteveCarell's newfound fame. The final result shows that rewrites occurred.
* Creator/TerryGilliam's ''Film/{{Jabberwocky}}'' was released in some areas as ''Creator/MontyPython's Jabberwocky''. Half of the group had nothing to do with the film.
* ''Film/AnchormanTheLegendOfRonBurgundy'' has a weird case with ''Wake Up, Ron Burgundy'', a collection of alternate takes and a lengthy deleted subplot about terrorists from the original film, all cobbled together to feature length. The narrator sells it like it's a sequel, but it's obviously not.
* ''Film/WhoFramedRogerRabbit'' is well known as a [[InNameOnly loose]] adaptation of the novel by Gary K. Wolf, but what is less known is that the plot line involving the highway and the dismantling of public transportation was originally meant to be used for a sequel to ''Film/{{Chinatown}}''.
* The script of an unproduced movie ''Big Baby'' was [[ExecutiveMeddling rewritten to be a sequel]] to ''Film/HoneyIShrunkTheKids'', thus came ''Honey I Blew Up The Kid''.
* ''Film/MadMaxBeyondThunderdome'' was first just an AfterTheEnd film about a man meeting up with a colony of feral children. Then someone suggested that man should be Mad Max.
* Bruno Mattei's shark {{mockbuster}} ''Cruel Jaws'' is titled in some places ''Film/{{Jaws}} 5: Cruel Jaws'' (then again, the film blatantly uses footage from ''Film/{{Jaws}}'' and ''Film/{{Jaws 2}}'').
* There's persistent rumors that the first ''Film/ResidentEvil'' movie was this. Supposedly after Romero's version fell through, Paul Anderson was hired to shoot the movie. Anderson had a script that was vaguely similar to ''Franchise/ResidentEvil'' hanging around and decided to use it.
* The script to ''Film/GeorgeOfTheJungle'' was originally a spec script for a Tarzan parody called ''Gorilla Boy'' that writer Dana Olsen avoided sending in to Disney as he felt that the studio didn't want DuelingMovies. Olsen later found out that ''George of the Jungle'' didn't have a script so he sent ''Gorilla Boy'' to Disney, Disney liked it and ''Gorilla Boy'' became ''George of the Jungle''.
* One alternative title for ''Memorial Valley Massacre'' turns into a sequel for ''Film/SleepawayCamp''.
* ''[[Film/{{Meatballs}} Meatballs Part II]]'' was originally shot under the name ''Space Kid'' and was going to be more like ''Film/{{Porkys}}'' than the first ''Meatballs''. Then the film got picked up for distribution, the ''Meatballs'' name was applied and nearly all of the sexual content was cut to create a more family friendly film in the vein of the first. Of course, the two later films would end up becoming raunchier in an attempt to keep the franchise going.
* After the film ''Film/{{Society}}'' bombed, the sequel's script was rewritten into ''Film/InitiationSilentNightDeadlyNight4''.
* In a remake's attempt to become a DivorcedInstallment, ''Film/TheKarateKid2010'' was originally named "The Kung-Fu Kid", but Creator/JackieChan refused to do the movie unless it was renamed to increase its marketing appeal.
* ''8mm 2'' has nothing to do with ''Film/EightMM''. It doesn't even feature a video camera at any point, let alone an 8mm one. It was shot and produced as a boilerplate softcore erotic thriller (the kind you might see on Creator/{{Cinemax}} late at night). The ''8mm'' name was tacked on in the 11th hour when the distributors got the rights to that movie, in a last-ditch attempt to make a profit on the film.
* ''Film/TheRaid2Berandal'' was actually written by Gareth Evans before the original ''Film/TheRaid''. When ''The Raid'' became an international success, Evans simply dusted off his older script, and changed a couple of character names and rewrote the beginning so that the main character would be one of the surviving main characters from the earlier film.
* The Italian war movie ''The Last Hunter'' was originally sold as a sequel to ''Film/TheDeerHunter'', even though the two are remarkably dissimilar other than the Vietnam backdrop.
* ''Film/DraculaUntold'' wasn't originally intended to be part of a new "monster universe", but the ending was altered to allow for this.
* ''Film/TheLordsOfFlatbush'' was released in Italy as ''Series/HappyDays - the Peach Flower Gang'', giving the impression it was a prequel to ''Happy Days'', even changing the name of Creator/HenryWinkler's character into "Fonzie".
* Rick Jaffa wrote the first treatment for ''Film/RiseOfThePlanetOfTheApes'' as an original story inspired by reports of people raising primates as children in their homes and being attacked by them. It wasn't until he was finishing it that he realized that, given enough time, the situation created by the ending could very well lead to the world seen in the 1968 ''Film/{{Planet Of The Apes|1968}}''. So Jaffa contacted FOX, presented the story as a reboot for ''Franchise/PlanetOfTheApes'', and this is the result.
* The DirectToVideo film ''Film/AnythingForLove'' was marketed as a sequel to ''Film/JustOneOfTheGuys'' in the United States, and ''Film/HesMyGirl'' in Germany and Hungary (all three films feature a main character disguised as the opposite gender).
* The film ''Mind Ripper'' (aka ''The Outpost'') is called ''The Hills Have Eyes 3'' in some areas, since it has some involvement from Creator/WesCraven, who directed the original ''Film/TheHillsHaveEyes1977''.
* ''Film/UnderSiege2DarkTerritory'' was originally a standalone Creator/StevenSeagal action film called ''In Dark Territory''.
* ''Film/TheExorcistIII'' was based on William Peter Blatty's unrelated book ''Legion'' and was an unrelated film until Warners decided to turn it into Exorcist III.
* ''The Falcon Takes Over'', the third film in a series starring Creator/GeorgeSanders as a detective called the Falcon, was an adaptation of Creator/RaymondChandler's Literature/PhilipMarlowe novel ''Literature/FarewellMyLovely''.
** Similarly ''Time to Kill'' starring Lloyd Nolan as Mike Shayne is actually an adaptation of another Marlowe novel, ''The High Window''.
* In 1992, Peter Sagal wrote an original screenplay called ''Cuba Mine'' based on the real life experience of producer JoAnn Jansen, who lived in Cuba as a 15-year-old in 1958-59. It was about a young American woman who witnessed the Cuban revolution had a romance with a young Cuban revolutionary. The screenplay was to be a serious political romance story, documenting, among other stories, how the Cuban revolution transformed from idealism to terror. A decade after gathering dust, it got turned into ''Dirty Dancing: Havana Nights''. Seriously.
* After the success of ''Film/{{Django}}'', several {{spaghetti western}}s were retitled (especially in Germany) to make them look like sequels to ''Django''. He wasn't the only character to get this treatment: Johnny Ringo, Film/{{Sartana}} and [[Film/{{TheSabataTrilogy}} Sabata]] all got unofficial sequels. A list can be found here: https://www.spaghetti-western.net/index.php/Title_chaos
** Sometimes the name change didn't go beyond the title. For example in ''Kill Django...Kill First'' the hero is called Johnny Magee. And in ''Django kill, if you live...shoot!'' the main character has no name.
** ''Viva Django!'' did start out as a proper sequel for ''Film/{{Django}}'', but as Franco Nero was unavailable (he was starring in Theatre/{{Camelot}}), the role was recast with Terence Hill. Subsequently the movie was marketed in the Netherlands as a sequel to ''[[{{Trinity}} They Call Me Trinity]]''.
** Creator/YulBrynner's character in ''[[Film/{{TheSabataTrilogy}} Adios, Sabata]]'' is called Indio Black in the original Italian version, however the name change actually makes sense in this case, since both ''Sabata'' and ''Adios, Sabata'' were directed by Gianfranco Parolini and Indio Black is exactly the same character as Sabata, only with a different costume.
* The Bruno Mattei movie ''Rats: Night of Terror'' was marketed in Germany as a sequel to ''Film/{{Escape 2000}}''.
* Maciste was a stock hero of many Italian films, a superhuman strongman akin to Hercules. When his 60s SwordAndSandal pictures were dubbed for US distribution, the majority changed Maciste to someone more familiar to Americans--usually Hercules, sometimes Samson or Goliath--and altered the title to match. See, for example, ''Film/HerculesAgainstTheMoonMen''.
* ''Film/WerewolvesOnWheels'' was billed as a sequel to ''Angels Hard as They Come'' in Australia, where they are billed as the ''Angel Warriors'' series.
* ''Trial and Error'', a 1998 film with Jeff Daniels, was renamed ''Ancora più scemo'' ("Even Dumber") in Italy, just to capitalize on the success of Daniels' earlier film, ''Film/DumbAndDumber'', which in Italy was named "Scemo e + scemo" (more or less an exact translation of the title). The two films are of course totally unrelated.
* ''Film/HellraiserJudgement'' could be called a "reunited installment": it was initially a ''Franchise/{{Hellraiser}}'' film, but scheduling conflicts killed it in pre-production. The writer/director (series FX artist Gary J. Tunnicliffe) scrubbed the ''Hellraiser'' elements and took to [=KickStarter=] to fund it independently. When the studio needed to make another ''Hellraiser'' film, they used this one since they already had it.
* A rather unique inversion of this is ''Film/FinalDestination'', which originally began life as an episode of ''Series/TheXFiles''. The script eventually got rejected, and thus repurposed into an actual horror film which would go on to spawn four more installments.

* Creator/OrsonScottCard had already drafted an outline for his novel ''Literature/SpeakerForTheDead'' before deciding to insert the protagonist from his previous short story "Ender's War" into the lead role. He expanded the short story into the novel ''Literature/EndersGame'' to provide {{backstory}} for ''Speaker for the Dead''. ''Ender's Game'' became by far the author's most successful book, and launched a popular series. When asked by his publisher to write a third installment, he used an idea for a standalone book he was writing, ''Philotes'', and inserted Ender into that one as well.
* Leslie Charteris wrote several stories early in his career featuring protagonists very similar to Literature/TheSaint. When he decided to concentrate on the Saint as his main character, these stories were included in the Saint short story collections with the hero's name changed to Simon Templar.
* William Faulkner's novel ''Literature/AbsalomAbsalom'' is a sort of classic-literature version of this. The young people in the "present time" of the novel were originally going to be characters Faulkner had never written about before: one a Southerner and one a Northerner. However, Faulkner ended up giving these roles to Quentin Compson (a main character from his earlier novel ''Literature/TheSoundAndTheFury'') and his Canadian roommate Shreve, thus giving ''Absalom, Absalom!'' intertextual relationships with other works involving the Compson family.
* The Creator/IanFleming short story "Quantum of Solace" is largely simply about a doomed marriage and the power plays within it. However, Fleming also inserted a framing device of Literature/JamesBond being told the story at a cocktail party so he could put it in ''Literature/ForYourEyesOnly'', a collection of ''James Bond'' short stories.
* It is rumored that most, if not all of the stories Casshern Sebastian Goto writes for [[TabletopGame/{{Warhammer 40000}} The Black Library]] are actually rewritten from original military SF pieces he had previously tried and failed to publish with other companies, which would certainly explain his cavalier attitude towards 40k {{Canon}}.
* This happened to the work of Creator/RobertEHoward, the inventor of Franchise/ConanTheBarbarian. Four novellas which originally had nothing to do with Conan and in fact had entirely different settings were posthumously rewritten into Conan stories. Indeed, Howard's ''Literature/ThePhoenixOnTheSword'', the first Conan story published, started life as a rewrite of a rejected Literature/{{Kull}} of Atlantis story.
** Relatedly, several of Marvel's early Conan comics were plots from the "Kothar" novels by Garder Fox, with the names changed.
* Creator/EEDocSmith's ''Triplanetary'' originally had nothing to do with his later ''Literature/{{Lensman}}'' novels, but was heavily rewritten after their success to serve as a {{prequel}}, with ''First Lensman'' written specifically [[CanonWelding to bridge the two storylines]]. Triplanetary is something of a double example, since it wasn't even a book at all to start with; it was three entirely unrelated short stories which were [[FixupNovel rewritten to be a single book]] so that the book could then be used as part of the Lensman series.
* Somewhere between this and PoorlyDisguisedPilot, ''Rinkitink in Oz'' was intended as the beginning of a new series, but crossed over with [[Literature/LandOfOz Oz]] because [[ToughActToFollow the author was having a hard time getting anything published that wasn't an Oz book]]. Sadly for him, everyone preferred Dorothy and company, and he found himself writing [[FranchiseZombie yet more Oz books]].
* The fifth ''Literature/ArtemisFowl'' book, ''The Last Colony'', originally had nothing to do with Artemis and centered around a new character, Minerva. However, since the new character was a lot like Artemis, another [[InsufferableGenius insufferable child genius]], Creator/EoinColfer instead opted to focus the book on Artemis and include Minerva as a secondary character.
* When a collection of Creator/JamesHSchmitz's ''Literature/FederationOfTheHub'' stories was republished by Creator/BaenBooks, the non-Hub story "Planet of Forgetting" was rewritten as a Hub story, "Forget It". The theory here was that [[http://groups.google.co.uk/group/rec.arts.sf.written/msg/1e4301970a6520ea?hl=en it may well have been a Dolled Down Installment in the first place]].
* When Creator/DouglasAdams needed to come up with a storyline for the third book of ''Literature/TheHitchHikersGuideToTheGalaxy'', ''Literature/LifeTheUniverseAndEverything'', he took an old ''Series/DoctorWho'' movie script called "Doctor Who and the Krikketmen" and rewrote it to be about the ''Guide'' characters (with some difficulty; he would later say the problem was finding a ''Guide'' character who was ''interested'' in saving the universe -- he eventually settled on Slarty and Trillian, who essentially become [[{{Expy}} Expies]] of the Doctor and Sarah Jane).
* ''Literature/DirkGentlysHolisticDetectiveAgency'' was likewise cribbed from "[[Recap/DoctorWhoS17E6Shada Shada]]", an uncompleted ''Series/DoctorWho'' story. Professor Chronotis was originally a Shada character, as is the fictional college he works at (St. Cedd's), his time machine (which closely resembles a TARDIS), and his unnaturally long life. The story itself also derives from his completed ''Doctor Who'' "[[Recap/DoctorWhoS17E2CityOfDeath City of Death]]."
* ''[[Creator/JacquelineWilson Tracy Beaker: The Dare Game]]'' was originally a play for a Manchester theater. Jacqueline Wilson was originally going to let Tracy rest, but the lead girl was very similar to Tracy. So when the theater rejected her play after a fire and some new management, she turned it into a Tracy book.
* Creator/PGWodehouse rewrote a few of his earlier stories around his more popular characters, such as ''Literature/JeevesAndWooster''.
* ''Website/{{Cracked}}'''s [[http://www.cracked.com/article_20187_5-little-known-sequels-that-ruined-iconic-stories.html 5 Little-Known Sequels That Ruined Iconic Stories]] explains that Charles Webb admitted that his novel ''Literature/HomeSchool'', the sequel to ''Literature/TheGraduate'', had the old characters shoehorned into a new story.
* Will Murray wrote several official Franchise/DocSavage novels based on fragments and story ideas left behind by the original Doc Savage author Lester Dent. One of these—''Flight Into Fear''—was an unsold non-Doc Savage story Murray rewrote to star Doc and his aides.
* Jean-Marc and Randy Lofficier's English translation of the early French SF novel ''Docteur Omega'' by Arnould Galopin controversially included multiple {{Shout Out}}s to ''Series/DoctorWho'', including a strong innuendo that Dr. Omega actually was the First Doctor using a pseudonym.
* Odd example in ''Literature/{{Goosebumps}}:'' the ''Series 2000'' book ''Return to Ghost Camp'' really has nothing to do with the original ''Ghost Camp'' from the main series, save for both involving [[ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin a camp with ghosts]]. The camps themselves, as well as the main characters and [[GhostlyGoals the motivations of the ghosts]] are all different. It's not clear why they decided to make the connection to that book in particular, except perhaps that, again, it had an easy, descriptive name.

[[folder:Live Action TV]]
* ''Series/{{Torchwood}}'' began as an idea for an original series called ''Excalibur''. When Creator/RussellTDavies' revival of ''Series/DoctorWho'' did well, he converted it into a SpinOff.
* According to Creator/PeterDavison, the ''Doctor Who'' serial "[[Recap/DoctorWhoS19E5BlackOrchid Black Orchid]]" was a script that Terence Dudley had written as a standalone murder-mystery that he just dolled up for the series.
** The first story that Creator/RobertHolmes wrote for the series, "[[Recap/DoctorWhoS6E4TheKrotons The Krotons]]" started life as a standalone science-fiction serial he unsuccessfully pitched to the BBC in 1965.
* The ''Franchise/SuperSentai'' series ''Series/HikariSentaiMaskman'' and ''Series/ChoujuuSentaiLiveman'' were renamed ''[[Series/ChoudenshiBioman Bioman]] 2'' and ''Bioman 3'' when aired in France.
* Similarly, in Brazil, the ''Franchise/MetalHeroes'' series ''Series/JikuuSenshiSpielban'' became ''[[Series/KyojuuTokusouJuspion Jaspion]] 2''.
** This happens with the American versions of {{Toku}} series as well, and it's not just in name. When the footage from one series runs out, it's time for a new enemy to displace the old, render the current tech obsolete (or scrap), and have the same characters don new gear. The two seasons of ''Series/VRTroopers,'' the two seasons of ''Series/{{Beetleborgs}}'', and the first six seasons of ''Franchise/PowerRangers'' were done this way, to generally agreeable effect, before ''Power Rangers'' made the switch to the Japanese format starting with ''Series/PowerRangersLostGalaxy.'' Of course, when you have an original cast using only the suited fight footage from an earlier series, it's easy.
* An episode of ''Series/TheRockfordFiles'' ("Sleight of Hand") was based on a novel called ''Into Thin Air''.
* Creator/GeneRoddenberry combined this with PoorlyDisguisedPilot to try getting a potential series called ''Assignment: Earth'' off the ground. When no one went for his pitch, he turned the {{pilot}} into an episode of ''Series/{{Star Trek|The Original Series}}''. The result is that Kirk and Spock enter the storyline and... do pretty much nothing. In the end, no series was made despite the SequelHook.
* Much like "The Slaver Weapon" example below, the ''Series/StarTrekTheOriginalSeries'' episode "Catspaw" was loosely based on the writer Creator/RobertBloch's earlier unrelated short story "BroomstickRide" (though with a different ending).
* Creator/ShotaroIshinomori intended to adapt his story "Onigeki Hibiki" into a TV series. However, he died before doing so, but said work did end up being produced...dolled up as ''Series/KamenRiderHibiki''.
* ''Series/FridayThe13thTheSeries'' was originally intended to be a stand alone series entitled "The 13th Hour" but Frank Mancuso decided to connect it to the ''Franchise/FridayThe13th'' franchise at the last minute, despite it having nothing to do with Jason Voorhees or the films.
* ''Series/LawAndOrderCriminalIntent'' was originally going to be a standalone series, based on the character dynamic between Detectives Goren and Eames. The studio, thinking that it was more likely to be picked up and draw a larger audience as a ''Franchise/LawAndOrder'' show, added the DONG DONG ''Law & Order''-sound and called it ''Law & Order''.
** Likewise ''Series/LawAndOrderSpecialVictimsUnit'' was originally supposed to be a standalone series called "Sex Crimes".
* ''Series/MurderSheWrote'' episode "The Grand Old Lady" was based on an unused ''Series/ElleryQueen'' script, with Ellery replaced with {{expy}} Christy [=McGinn=] and a FramingDevice added with JessicaFletcher.
** Additionally, the final follow-up TV movie, ''The Celtic Riddle,'' was adapted from a completely unrelated novel by Lyn Hamilton with Jessica Fletcher filling in for the book's protagonist.
* From ''Series/{{Columbo}}'':
** "No Time to Die" is an adaptation on the ''Literature/EightySeventhPrecinct'' novel ''So Long as You Both Shall Live'', with Columbo taking the place of multiple 87th Precinct cops (in the novel Bert Kling's new wife Augusta is kidnapped on the day they're married, in this adaptation it's Columbo's nephew's wife who's taken). This one stands out as it is the only episode to feature any member of Columbo's family - namely, Detective Andy Parma.
** "Undercover" is also an ''Literature/EightySeventhPrecinct'' adaptation, of the novel ''Jigsaw''. Unlike the above, this version includes one of the characters from the 87th (Arthur Brown, who's also one of the cops investigating in the book).
** "Uneasy Lies The Crown" is an unusual example -- the script had been written for ''Columbo'', but Falk passed on it. With a few changes to the plot it was instead filmed as "Affair of the Heart" in the sixth season of ''Series/McMillanAndWife'' with Larry Hagman as the dentist. In 1990 during season 9, Falk chose to go ahead with the script. A good chunk of the dialog and even character names are the same although certain major plot points differ -- though Falk apparently stuck to the script as it had been originally written. Nancy Walker, who had been a regular on ''Series/McMillanAndWife'', appeared as one of the celebrity poker players in the ''Columbo'' version. Columbo even points out that she was in "the Rock Hudson mystery show".
* The ''Series/SeventySevenSunsetStrip'' episode "One False Step" is based on ''Film/StrangersOnATrain''. Screenwriters Creator/RaymondChandler and Czenzi Ormonde and novelist Creator/PatriciaHighsmith are credited.
* Creator/KelseyGrammer intended his own sitcom to feature a recently paralysed media billionaire and his relationship with his carer. ExecutiveMeddling rewrote this into the ''Series/{{Frasier}}'' spin off from ''Series/{{Cheers}}''.

* When Music/MichaelJackson released ''Music/OffTheWall,'' it was such a monumental success that his previous record label, Creator/{{Motown}}, released an album of material—both unreleased and just kinda obscure—as ''One Day in Your Life'' in 1981, the pure schmaltz of which made "ABC" sound like Music/{{ACDC}}. The following year, ''Music/{{Thriller}}'' (1982) was released and by 1984, it became the biggest selling album ever, prompting Creator/{{Motown}} to remix some older songs—some being over decade old—and released ''Farewell My Summer Love'' the title song of which makes "The Girl Is Mine" sound like "[[Music/TheBeatles Helter Skelter]]." This stopped happening, thankfully, however, future Michael Jackson album releases seemed to coincide with well-timed Music/TheJacksonFive hits collections.
* In 1983, Music/{{Yes}} had kinda reunited (four of the five members of the new band - all save guitarist Music/TrevorRabin - had been in Yes at one time or another, though never all at once) and recorded ''90125'', but had decided to rechristen themselves Cinema. The recording company said it would make more sense to keep the Yes name, and so they did (though the guitarist objected, as he wanted a new band instead of inadvertently joining a reunion).
** After several former members of the band formed a parallel group with the ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin name "Anderson Bruford Wakeman Howe"[[note]]which some [=DJs=] dubbed "Yes (Not Yes)," playing off the group name Was (Not Was); the musicians eventually dropped the name because it sounds like a lawyer firm[[/note]], several songs which would have been released for the second album ended up with some form the above incarnation of Yes, to form the somewhat awkwardly named "Union" album, all under the Yes banner. It's awkwardly named as the two different lineups didn't really record much together; other than Jon Anderson's lead vocals on every track and Chris Squire's backing vocals (but not bass playing) on some of the ABWH tracks, it's pretty much two different bands on the same album.
* A much earlier Yes-related example was a track Rick Wakeman composed for the album ''Fragile'', entitled "Handle With Care" (as a play on the album's title). Due to contractual prohibition of Wakeman making any compositional contributions to Yes works, it eventually got renamed "Catherine of Aragon" and inserted on his first solo album, ''The Six Wives of Henry VIII''.
* Music/JayZ's song "Renegade" with Music/{{Eminem}} off the ''The Blueprint'' was originally written and produced by Eminem as a song for Royce da 5'9". The part during one of Eminem's verses containing what sounds like vocalized record scratches was actually dubbing over a reference to Royce in the lyrics.
* When a band breaks up and the member who was the main creative force records a solo album, it's not uncommon for the record label to [[ExecutiveMeddling insist]] that the album be released under the band's name. Music/BlackSabbath's ''Seventh Star'', Music/{{Candlemass}}' ''Dactylis Glomerata'', Music/ManillaRoad's ''The Circus Maximus'', Music/JethroTull's "A" and Music/{{Megadeth}}'s ''The System Has Failed'' and ''United Abominations'', among countless others, are examples of this phenomenon.
* It's even worse when the member involved wasn't the main creative force. After Music/VelvetUnderground split up, the group's non-original member Doug Yule recorded a solo album called ''Squeeze'', which the record company, against Yule's wishes, insisted on releasing as a Velvet Underground album. This naturally led to Yule and the album being '''despised''' by the few people who had actually been Velvet Underground fans during the group's existence, and killed his career stone dead.
* Music/JohannSebastianBach apparently composed several church cantatas by taking a previously written secular cantata, replacing the texts of the arias and choruses and composing new recitatives and chorale settings. In some cases, such as the Easter Oratorio (BWV 249), all that survives of the original secular cantata is its text and the numbers reused in the sacred version. Cantatas 134 and 173, like the Easter Oratorio, betray their secular origins (specifically, as congratulatory pieces for Prince Leopold of Anhalt-Cöthen) by not including any chorales or Bible verses, which anchor the vast majority of Bach's sacred cantatas.
* The Music/MeatPuppets lineup of ''Golden Lies'' is another example. Guitarist and singer Curt Kirkwood started a new band named The Royal Neanderthal Orchestra, but legal issues with the Meat Puppets' record label forced them to use the Meat Puppets name.

[[folder:Newspaper Comics]]
* Charles Schulz originally created the character of Peppermint Patty for a children's book he planned to write. He never got around to writing it, so he made her a ''ComicStrip/{{Peanuts}}'' character instead. Relatedly, Schulz is on record saying that she was the only character other than [[BornUnlucky Charlie Brown]] who was strong enough to carry their own comic strip.

* A mild example: [[Creator/MidwayGames Bally's]] ''Pinball/{{Star Trek|Bally}}'' pinball was originally intended to tie into [[Series/StarTrekTheOriginalSeries the original television series.]] However, soon after manufacturing began, the artwork was changed to associate it with ''Film/StarTrekTheMotionPicture'' instead.
* Played rigidly straight with Creator/{{Bally}}'s ''Pinball/TheSixMillionDollarMan'', where the only ties from the game to the television show is the backglass art and a single picture of Lee Majors on the playfield.
* Creator/ElectronicArts' ''VideoGame/CrueBall'' was originally developed as "Headbanger Ball", but MTV balked at a license. Music/MotleyCrue was added late in development.
* The "Gladiators" table of ''VideoGame/LastGladiators'' was re-themed and released on the Japanese iTunes Store as "Ultra Legend Pinball", an ''Series/{{Ultraman}}'' LicensedPinballTable.
* ''VideoGame/GhostbustersPinball'' is a digital retheming of Creator/{{Gottlieb}}'s ''Pinball/HauntedHouse,'' done using [=FarSight=] Studios' ''VideoGame/ThePinballArcade'' platform.

[[folder:Professional Wrestling]]
* On a September 2000 edition of ''Monday Nitro'', World Championship Wrestling held a special match that, having been conceived by Vince Russo, was unneededly confusing and gimmicky. It pitted two teams of five wrestlers against each other inside the triple-tiered cage seen in ''Ready to Rumble''. The WCW Championship was hung above the highest cage, and the person who walked out of the bottom cage with the belt in hand would win the match for their team and the title for themselves. Despite sharing almost no similarities with the classic War Games match other than a team format inside a special cage, WCW decided to call the match "War Games 2000: Russo's Revenge."
* After trimming down the number of live monthly pay-per-views from twelve to four in 2013, TNA Wrestling began dolling up episodes of their regular weekly show Impact Wrestling as installments of the disused PPV shows and concepts (e.g., Destination X).
* WWE:
** When the WWF bought a controlling stake in George Championship Wrestling, they used previously-filmed WWF footage to fill GCW's ''World Championship Wrestling'' Saturday night program on TBS (rather than using matches exclusively filmed for the program, as Vince [=McMahon=] had promised Ted Turner). This practice continued until [=McMahon=] eventually sold his shares of GCW to Jim Crockett, Jr.
** WWE last held The Great American Bash pay-per-view in 2009 (and even then, it was shortened to "The Bash"), but in 2012, they aired a special live episode of ''[=SmackDown=]'' as ''Super [=SmackDown=] Live: The Great American Bash''.
** WWE does a variation of this by taking shows scheduled as untelevised live events and converting them to WWE Network-exclusive specials (essentially dolling up house shows as sub-PPV special events).

[[folder:Tabletop Games]]
* Creator/FantasyFlightGames secured the rights to the old Dune board game, but were unable to get the Dune license itself. Their solution was to recycle the mechanics and set it in the backstory of their own ''TabletopGame/TwilightImperium'' series as ''REX: Final Days of an Empire''. Some of this was pretty straightforward, with the races pairing well with Dune's factions; the ProudMerchantRace Hacan having the same gameplay as the Spacing Guild makes perfect sense for example. Others are kind of ridiculous; the Xxcha might be skilled diplomats, but giving them the Bene Gesserit's AllAccordingToPlan victory condition is just silly.

* After the cancellation of ''WesternAnimation/IronMan'', [=ToyBiz=] was left with a final wave of Iron Man figures that [[MerchandiseDriven now no longer had a show to shill them]]. However, both the X-Men and Spider-Man still had [[WesternAnimation/XMen popular]] [[WesternAnimation/SpiderManTheAnimatedSeries cartoons]] on the air at the time, so the Iron Man figures were {{ReTool}}ed as the ''Spider-Man: Techno Wars'' and ''X-Men: Mutant Armor'' lines.
* Dolls from the Literature/AmericanGirlsCollection were actually derived from those by German dollmaker Götz. AG founder Pleasant Rowland was looking for a manufacturer to produce her doll line, and found one in Götz. She then bought the remaining stock of Romina dolls and retooled them as Samantha Parkington, one of the first three historical characters to be released by the company in 1986.

[[folder:Video Games]]
* Puzzle games were quite infamous for this:
** Dolled up versions of ''VideoGame/PuyoPuyo'' made their way onto the SNES and Sega Genesis in America as ''[[Franchise/{{Kirby}} Kirby's Avalanche]]'' and ''[[WesternAnimation/AdventuresOfSonicTheHedgehog Dr. Robotnik's Mean Bean Machine]]'' respectively because both Nintendo and Sega thought that the Western audience would not accept the aesthetics of the series at the time. Disney Interactive also released ''[[Disney/TheLionKing Timon and Pumbaa's Bug Drop]]'' for the PC, which is a very stripped down ''Puyo Puyo''. Japan eventually got its own dolled-up version, ''Haro no Puyo Puyo'' for the UsefulNotes/GameBoyAdvance, which used ''Franchise/{{Gundam}}'' characters.
** ''Tetris Attack'' is a unique example in that not one but ''two'' {{Cash Cow Franchise}}s' assets (characters from ''VideoGame/YoshisIsland'', and the ''VideoGame/{{Tetris}}'' brand name) were overlaid on the block-swapping action puzzler ''VideoGame/PanelDePon'' (which, it should be added, contains almost no FallingBlocks whatsoever).
** Several years later, ''Anime/{{Pokemon}}'' characters would replace the Yoshi characters in ''Pokémon [[VideoGame/PanelDePon Puzzle League]]'', and from there, the last part of that name stuck. An interesting case for the latter is that ''PPL'' was a dolled up installment of a back then canceled ''Panel de Pon'' sequel for N64. The original game was later released as part of ''Nintendo Puzzle Collection'' for Nintendo Gamecube. Now, if they decided to [[NoExportForYou export that game]].
** ''Pokémon Puzzle Challenge'' for the Game Boy Color is an interesting case. The overworld graphics of Ethan running through Johto are blatantly a hasty graphics-edit of Lip running between the ''Panel de Pon'' [[FloatingContinent sky islands]], but despite what this and the history of the ''Panel de Pon'' series might lead you to think, it was a ''Pokémon'' game in Japan too. It [[https://tcrf.net/Pokemon_Puzzle_Challenge apparently started life as a companion game to the N64 PdP]] (titled [[SuperTitle64Advance Panel de Pon GB]]), [[WhatCouldHaveBeen but had the fairy characters switched out for Pokémon ones at some point in development]] - apparently very late, since not only was every single-player character stage finished, ''every player character from the original Panel de Pon'' has a full set of portraits buried in the code. A very unfinished version of ''PDP GB'' is, however, accessible in the ''Puzzle Challenge'' ROM via an obscure button code.
* ''Yoshi's Cookie'' was originally an unrelated puzzle game known as ''Hermetica'' that was turned into a ''Mario'' game shortly into development. The "Hermetica" name can still be seen in the Game Boy version's debug menu.
* ''VideoGame/SleepingDogs'' began development under the {{working title}} "Black Lotus". Activision had the developers rename it ''True Crime: Hong Kong''. After Activision dropped the game it was picked up by Square Enix and given its current name.
* Taken to a literal turn with ''[[Literature/AmericanGirlsCollection The American Girls Premiere]]'', which started life as ''VideoGame/OpeningNight'', a theatrical simulation game released by MECC in 1995. [=SoftKey=], a company infamous for making a name for itself by grabbing whatever CashCowFranchise it sees, acquired MECC, and since their theatre sim didn't sell well, [=SoftKey=], which has since absorbed itself under The Learning Company label, made a licensed version of Opening Night for Pleasant Company in 1997. And as [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KqGwUffHyCo Lazy Game Reviews]] explained in his video, it sold like hotcakes and may have accounted for Mattel's subsequent acquisition of both The Learning Company and American Girl ''itself''.
* The ''Franchise/WonderBoy'' series. The developer, Westone, actually retained the copyright for the code and general concept, while Sega licensed those while owning the rights to the ''Wonder Boy'' title and characters. Thus, there was nothing stopping Creator/HudsonSoft from licensing the non-Sega parts of the games and making its own versions with original characters and without the ''Wonder Boy'' name. As a result, nearly every installment of the ''Wonder Boy'' franchise received a dolled-up version by Hudson:
** ''VideoGame/AdventureIsland'' for the NES, a sprite-swapped port of the arcade ''VideoGame/WonderBoy'', which would go on to become its own franchise.
** ''Bikkuriman World'' for the UsefulNotes/PCEngine is a Japan-only port of ''VideoGame/WonderBoyInMonsterLand'' with the ''{{Bikkuriman}}'' (a lineup of trading stickers) license tacked on. Creator/HudsonSoft also released a mobile version in the 2000s titled ''Super Adventure Island'' (no relation to the SNES game).
** ''Dragon's Curse'' for the UsefulNotes/TurboGrafx16, a port of ''VideoGame/WonderBoyIIITheDragonsTrap''--which, coincidentally, was titled ''Adventure Island'' in Japan.
** ''The Dynastic Hero'' for the UsefulNotes/TurboGrafx16, a port of ''VideoGame/WonderBoyInMonsterWorld''.
** Jaleco also released a dolled up Famicom version of ''VideoGame/WonderBoyInMonsterLand'' called ''Saiyuki World''. Its sequel, ''Saiyuki World II'', was localized in the U.S. as ''Whomp 'Em'', with the original ''Literature/JourneyToTheWest'' motif replaced with a Native American one.
** And another one, that proves that even here, TropesAreNotBad: In 2014, the french developer ''Game Atelier'' decided to make a sequel to one of their games, [[CuteEmUp Flying Hamster]], and launched a Kickstarter campaign. Instead of another CuteEmUp, this sequel was intended as a SpiritualSuccessor to ''VideoGame/WonderBoyIIITheDragonsTrap''. The campaign failed, but a developer, FDG Entertainment, got interested and decided to support the game. It got changed in ''Monster Boy'' (so it would be more obvious...), the development went well... And Ryuichi Nishizawa (the creator of ''Wonder Boy'') learned about it... ''And loved it so much that he collaborated on it!!'' It's still called ''VideoGame/MonsterBoyAndTheCursedKingdom'' because Sega owns the rights to the ''Wonder Boy'' and ''Monster World'' names, but now it's really a brand new episode of the franchise (because Sega owns nothing else of it)!
* ''Contra Force'' actually began life as an unreleased Famicom game in Japan known as ''Arc Hound''. The game differs from the previous ''{{VideoGame/Contra}}'' games by having new play mechanics (including switchable characters, AI-controlled backup, and a ''VideoGame/{{Gradius}}''-style power-up selection system), as well as a present-day setting and human terrorists as villains. Konami of America haphazardly attempted to establish a connection between ''Contra Force'' and the rest of the ''VideoGame/{{Contra}}'' series by claiming that the ruined city in ''Contra III'' was actually Neo City (the place where ''Contra Force'' took place) in the manual.
* The ''Roleplay/RecordOfLodossWar'' game for the Dreamcast was not originally based on ''Lodoss''.
* WordOfGod claims that ''VideoGame/SilentHill4'' was always going to be a game set in the ''Franchise/SilentHill'' franchise, but just as a GaidenGame.
* ''VideoGame/StreetFighter2010: The Final Fight'' is a futuristic spin-off of the first ''VideoGame/StreetFighter'' released for the NES in 1990, a year before the ultra-popular ''VideoGame/StreetFighterII'' hit the arcades. The game is a boss-centric action-platformer instead of a competitive fighting game and the plot in the Famicom version didn't even have anything to do with ''Street Fighter'' (nor with ''VideoGame/FinalFight'', for that matter) despite inheriting its name. Despite this, or perhaps because of this, the localization team took the liberty of changing the protagonist's identity from Kevin, a cyborg policeman, to Ken, who became a gifted scientist in the years since the first Street Fighter tournament. Creator/{{Capcom}} [[CanonDiscontinuity no longer counts this as part of the franchise]] (not even as a side-game) and it seems like a strange artifact today, since the franchise has since gone in a very different direction and the year 2010 passed with some of the game's predictions going unfulfilled.
* The Western version of ''VideoGame/SuperMarioBros2'' was a [[GameMod sprite mod]] of the game ''VideoGame/DokiDokiPanic'', which was designed by the [[Creator/ShigeruMiyamoto same man]] as the original ''VideoGame/SuperMarioBros'', and happened to be originally the prototype of a vertical-scrolling ''Mario'' game (thus making ''Doki Doki Panic'' itself an example of this trope as well). The game also had several subtle but noticeable differences from its original counterpart: A few examples include some animations having more frames for smoother animation[[note]]For example, Albatoss only has a two frame "flap" in the Japanese version.[[/note]], adding a "B button run" feature, being able to change characters after clearing a level or losing a life[[note]]The four characters acted as save files (it was originally a Famicom Disk System game). Furthermore, you had to beat the game with all four characters in order to see the complete ending.[[/note]], etc. Though not as referenced as other games, and despite the AllJustADream ending, the game was canonized by the reappearance of several related enemies in later games (starting with Bob-ombs in the very next game, ''VideoGame/SuperMarioBros3''), its inclusion along with the Japanese ''Super Mario Bros. 2'' (''[[VideoGame/SuperMarioBrosTheLostLevels The Lost Levels]]'') in the ''All-Stars'' compilation, having a standalone recursive import to Japan as ''Super Mario USA'', and the fact that it gave the playable characters different abilities and gimmicks in later games like ''VideoGame/SuperMario3DWorld'' and the ''VideoGame/SuperSmashBros'' series.
* The first three ''[[Franchise/SaGaRPG SaGa]]'' games were released under the ''Franchise/FinalFantasy'' name in North America as the ''Final Fantasy Legend'' series. This was during the period when Creator/{{Nintendo}} and Creator/{{Square|Enix}} believed {{R|olePlayingGame}}PGs had [[ItWillNeverCatchOn very limited appeal in North America]] where gamers would be more likely to purchase a title if it had a familiar brand. (The first ''VideoGame/WorldOfMana'' game is not an example of this trope, even though it was ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyAdventure'' in the US -- it didn't start out as its own series, and was named ''Seiken Densetsu Final Fantasy {{Gaiden|Game}}'' even in Japan.)
* ''VideoGame/SecretOfEvermore'' also has nothing to do with the ''VideoGame/WorldOfMana'' franchise; it just is another game using the ''Mana''-style RingMenu system and similar play mechanics, so the similarities were enough that "Secret of" became part of the game's title in the hopes of aiding its success at market.
* ''VideoGame/StarFoxAdventures'' was originally a completely separate game from the ''VideoGame/StarFox'' franchise called ''Dinosaur Planet'', as one might guess from it being of a different genre. Many changes were made to the plot, including replacing one of the main characters with Fox, changing Krystal from a second fully playable character to a DamselInDistress, and adding a few space shooter missions. One might notice that ''Star Fox'' previously had no fantasy elements, and ''Dinosaur Planet'' had no science fiction elements before its reworking. Apparently, the only reason the franchises were merged was because during development, Nintendo noticed that the main character looked a lot like Fox and that there actually was a dinosaur planet in the Lylat system.
* ''VideoGame/Privateer2TheDarkening'', the "sequel" to ''VideoGame/WingCommanderPrivateer'', originated as a non-''Wing Commander''-related game with a working name of ''The Darkening'' (as per an advert in the back of the ''VideoGame/WingCommander IV'' manual). Due to several factors, including but not limited to ExecutiveMeddling, [=P2D=] had ''VideoGame/WingCommander'' touches added before the final release.
* When ''Elevator Action EX'' was released in the United States, publisher bam! Entertainment put the ''WesternAnimation/DextersLaboratory'' license over it. The three playable secret agents were replaced by Dexter in different suits, and the plot about searching for secret documents was changed into finding codes to deactivate a bunch of robots turned berserk by Mandark.
* The sequel to the pirate-themed RPG ''Sea Dogs'' was repurposed as ''[[VideoGame/PiratesOfTheCaribbean2003 Pirates of the Caribbean]]''. Aside from Creator/Keira Knightley narrating a cutscene and the plot involving a ghost ship called the Black Pearl, actual connections between the game and the movie are nonexistent.
* ''Soul Reaver'' was conceived as an original project titled "[[http://www.thelostworlds.net/SR1/Shifter.html The Shifter]]", which was redesigned as a ''VideoGame/LegacyOfKain'' spinoff, although the decision was made before any actual production work was done on the title. Later, ''Blood Omen 2'' began life as a sequel to the Genesis cult classic ''Chakan'' before being converted into a sequel to the ''Blood Omen'', resulting in numerous deviations from the original game design and the presence of some ''Chakan''-esque background art.
* In Japan, ''Dynasty Tactics'' is considered a SpinOff of the ''Romance of the Three Kingdoms'' series... but since that series isn't nearly as popular in the US, they relabeled it a spinoff of ''VideoGame/DynastyWarriors'' to attract more interest.
* ''VideoGame/DrawnToLife: WesternAnimation/SpongeBobSquarePants Edition''. ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin. Nevertheless, it was built from the ground up as a MissionPackSequel (by a different developer to boot) and consequently, does differ from the preceding game (and while we're throwing the word "sequel" around, it is also a sequel to the ''[=SpongeBob=]'' episode "Frankendoodle", effectively making this a follow-up to two different things).
* There is a mobile instalment of ''VideoGame/DinerDash'' with a ''WesternAnimation/SpongeBobSquarePants'' makeover, where you play as [=SpongeBob=] serving customers in the Krusty Krab like in ''Diner Dash''.
* ''VideoGame/DoubleDragonII'' for the UsefulNotes/GameBoy has nothing to do with the arcade game ''Double Dragon II: The Revenge'' or its NES counterpart. Instead, it's a localization of a ''VideoGame/KunioKun'' game titled ''Nekketsu Kōha Kunio-kun: Bangai Rantō Hen''. The plot was changed, the ''VideoGame/RiverCityRansom''-style backgrounds and character designs were replaced with more realistically designed ones, and the music is different as well. However, the play mechanics and level designs remained more or less the same, with only one boss getting a different attack pattern.
* ''[[VideoGame/SpyHunter Super Spy Hunter]]'' was originally ''Battle Formula'' in Japan.
* The UsefulNotes/SegaMasterSystem action shooter ''Ashura'' was released in the United States as a ''{{Rambo}}'' game (based on ''First Blood Part II'') and then in Europe as ''Secret Commando'' (which combines elements from the other two versions). Actually a subversion since ''Ashura'' was always meant to be a ''Rambo'' game, but Sega's license was only applicable in America.
* After Color Dreams became Wisdom Tree and started specializing in Biblical video games, they rereleased some of their earlier unlicensed NES games with Bible tie-ins. Thus ''Crystal Mines'' became ''Exodus: Journey to the Promised Land'', and ''Menace Beach'' became ''Sunday Funday'', with the hero is rushing to Sunday school rather than to save his girlfriend. They also took Creator/IdSoftware's ''VideoGame/Wolfenstein3D'' and transformed it into the much LighterAndSofter ''Super 3D Noah's Ark'', the only commercially released unlicensed title for the UsefulNotes/SuperNintendoEntertainmentSystem.
* ''VideoGame/BalloonFight'' was re-released in 2007 with Tingle from ''Franchise/TheLegendOfZelda'' as the balloon fighter. The box art even [[LampshadeHanging parodies]] it.
** ''VideoGame/BalloonKid'', the UsefulNotes/GameBoy sequel, was ported to the Family Computer in Japan as a ''HelloKitty'' game. Oddly, the original Game Boy version was not released in Japan until several years later on the UsefulNotes/GameBoyColor as ''Balloon Fight GB''.
* ''[[VideoGame/NinjaGaiden Ninja Gaiden Shadow]]'' for the Game Boy was actually developed by Natsume as a port of their NES game ''Shadow of the Ninja'': Tecmo bought the rights to the game and altered the graphics and story to make it into a prequel to the original NES ''Ninja Gaiden''.
* Kemco's ''Crazy Castle'' games is a series of nothing but dolled-up installments where the American versions somehow managed to be more consistent than their Japanese counterparts. The original NES version of ''The WesternAnimation/BugsBunny Crazy Castle'' was actually a localization of a ''[[Film/WhoFramedRogerRabbit Roger Rabbit]]'' game for the Famicom Disk System, while the UsefulNotes/GameBoy versions of ''Crazy Castle'' and ''Crazy Castle 2'' were originally ''WesternAnimation/MickeyMouse'' games in Japan, though Japan also got them as Bugs Bunny games in a CompilationRerelease. ''Crazy Castle 2'' was released in Europe as a ''Hugo'' game. ''Crazy Castle 3'' and ''4'' for the GBC were Bugs Bunny games in all regions (as was ''The Bugs Bunny Birthday Blowout''), but ''Crazy Castle 5'' was made into a WesternAnimation/WoodyWoodpecker game. ''Crazy Castle 3'', however, was first released in Japan on the monochrome Game Boy as ''Soreyuke!! Kid (Go! Go! Kid)'', with Kemco's mascot Kid Klown instead of Bugs Bunny.
* ''Mickey Mouse IV: The Magical Labyrinth'' became ''WesternAnimation/TheRealGhostbusters'' in America and ''ComicStrip/{{Garfield}}'s Labyrinth'' in Europe.
* ''WesternAnimation/DonaldDuck'' SportsGame for the Famicom, itself a conversion of the European UsefulNotes/{{Commodore 64}} game ''Alternative World Games'', was released overseas with a different license as ''Snoopy's Silly Sports Spectacular''. This was done because Creator/{{Capcom}} held an exclusive license on Disney games in the US and Europe at the time.
* ''Wario Blast'' is a dolled-up IntercontinuityCrossover. The Japanese version, ''Bomberman GB'' (not to be confused with ''Bomberman GB 2'', which was released overseas with the "2" taken out), is indeed a ''VideoGame/{{Bomberman}}'' game, but has nothing to do with VideoGame/{{Wario|Land}}. Interestingly, despite being retitled and marketed as a Wario game, Bomberman remains a playable character.
* Avoided in the case of ''VideoGame/BrutalLegend''. When Creator/{{Activision}} was slated to publish it, they were keen to tie it in to the ''VideoGame/GuitarHero'' franchise ("Guitar Hero Adventures" was apparently kicked around as a possible title), but the creative team resisted. Activision dropped the game partly over this dispute, leading Creator/ElectronicArts to publish it instead.
* ''VideoGame/MsPacMan'' was created as a bootleg knockoff of ''Pac-Man'' called "Crazy Otto", got acquired by Namco's distributor Midway, and was released with the new name and graphics as an unauthorized sequel. Namco themselves have since made Ms. Pac-Man an [[CanonImmigrant official canon character]], releasing games of their own starring her.
* The European NES game ''Trolls in Crazyland'' is actually a localization of ''Doki! Doki! Yuuenchi: Crazyland Daisakusen'' with protagonist and his girlfriend redesigned as Trolls.
* ''VideoGame/QuakeII'' was originally supposed to be entirely unrelated to the ''Quake'' series, and was only given the ''Quake'' name when the original name iD wanted to give the game turned out to be unusable for trademark reasons. Since then, the ''Quake'' name has mostly come to be associated with the Strogg story arc, but that's not surprisingly given the disjointed, [[RandomEventsPlot Random Events]] ExcusePlot that was the original ''Quake''.
* The Eastern European computer RPG ''Gorky-17'' (released as ''VideoGame/{{Odium}}'' in the West) actually had 2 prequels made for it, but due to ''Odium'''s relatively obscure reception, only 1 of the games was released in the West, under the name ''Soldier Elite'', with the names changed to do away with most references to the original ''Gorky-17/Odium''.
* ''VideoGame/DragonsLair: The Legend'' was a rebranded UsefulNotes/GameBoy port of Elite Systems' earlier UsefulNotes/ZXSpectrum title ''Roller Coaster'' (see it and other examples [[http://www.1up.com/do/feature?pager.offset=6&cId=3158520 here]]). The UsefulNotes/GameBoyColor version, on the other hand, was a port of the original arcade game.
* Parallax developed a space combat simulator, ''VideoGame/FreeSpace''. Problem is:
** A compression software with that name existed. Solution: put the name of Parallax's ''VideoGame/{{Descent}}'' series in the title. And that's why it's called ''Descent: [=FreeSpace=][[ColonCancer : The Great War]]'', even though it has nothing to do with shooting robots in outer space mines.
** To complicate things it was called ''Conflict: [=FreeSpace=]'' in Europe, with no overt references to ''Descent''. There was also a separate continuation of the ''Descent'' franchise, ''Descent³'', which ''did'' involve shooting robots in outer space mines, but [[FranchiseKiller died a death in the marketplace]].
* ''VideoGame/RedFaction'' started very early development as a fourth ''Descent'' game until it was changed to be a first-person shooter. Some elements were carried over, such as the textures, the protagonist's name (Parker) and [[UnexpectedGameplayChange the jet fighter combat level]].
* ''VideoGame/AlexKidd'' starred in two games that were not originally designed to be part of his series:
** ''Alex Kidd in High-Tech World'' is a graphic hack made for the western market of a Japanese Mark III game titled ''Anmitsu Hime'', which was based on a manga of the same name. The storyline was also altered for its localization. Alex's father appears in the game when he was supposed to be missing in ''Miracle World''.
** ''Alex Kidd in Shinobi World'' started development as an unrelated kid version of ''VideoGame/{{Shinobi}}'' titled ''Shinobi Kid''.
* ''VideoGame/NeedForSpeed: V-Rally'' and ''V-Rally 2 Presented By Need for Speed'' were dolled-up localizations of Infogrames/Eden Studios' ''V-Rally'' games.
* A video game adaption of ''Series/AmericasTestKitchen'' was released for the UsefulNotes/NintendoDS. In reality, it's an ''America's Test Kitchen'' game InNameOnly, as it is actually a [[MissionPackSequel Recipe Pack Sequel]] to ''Personal Trainer: Cooking''.
* The reason the PC version of ''VideoGame/PowerSlave'' is so different from its console versions is because it was originally a completely different game titled ''Ruins: Return of the Gods'', developed by 3D Realms as one of many titles to show off the then-fledgling Build engine. Eventually, they dropped the game and sold it to Playmates, after which it was modified to use ''[=PowerSlave=]'' concepts and resources, and then published.
* The ''VideoGame/{{Deception}}'' game series is an ''entire dolled up series''. In their original Japanese versions, they were thematically-related stand-alone games -- the closest it comes to series ties outside of ''Kagero 2'' is that the original ''Kagero'' had the subtitle ''Kokumeikan Shinsho'', formally acknowledging its ties to ''Kokumeikan'' -- but Tecmo decided to market them as a series in the US -- presumably assuming Americans wouldn't be able to follow the idea of stand-alone games by the same company that are so much alike. Bizarrely, the only sequel in the "series" in Japan, ''Kagero 2'', was marketed in the US as the stand-alone game ''VideoGame/{{Trapt}}.'' Even more confusingly, it's less a sequel to ''Kagero'' in any meaningful sense than a loose remake of ''Kokumeikan: Trap Simulation Game'' (released in the US as ''Deception: Invitation to Darkness'') with a female lead this time.
* Originally, ''VideoGame/TheBureauXComDeclassified'' was supposed to just be called ''XCOM'', and was originally a FirstPersonShooter with mild tactical elements, StarfishAliens, a [[TheFifties 1950s aesthetic]], and {{Steampunk}} inspired weaponry, [[InNameOnly given the name of a]] [[TwentyMinutesIntoTheFuture near future]] isometric turn-based strategy game. [[TaintedByThePreview It went over about as well as you can expect]]. After years of DevelopmentHell, the game eventually transitioned into a third-person shooter with stronger tactical gameplay elements with the aliens replaced with one from ''VideoGame/XCOMEnemyUnknown'', and its title was changed to reflect that it's intended to be a prequel while averting this trope.
* In the early 1990s, French developer Kalisto created a rather interesting [[TeamworkPuzzleGame teamwork-puzzle]] platformer called ''Fury of the Furries''. Namco was interested enough in it that they actually bought the license to it, replaced the titular furballs with a single VideoGame/MsPacMan wearing many hats and the music with variations on the Pac-Man theme, and the result was ''Pac-in-Time''. Well, except for the SNES version of it, which was a bit more than just a mere sprite swap of ''Fury of the Furries''. Also, the characters of ''Fury of the Furries'' were originally created for a PuzzleGame with the WorkingTitle ''The Brainies''. Though Kalisto later released it as ''The Tinies'', and Creator/TitusSoftware released a SNES port under the original title, Loriciel published the same game as a SpinOff of ''Skweek'' titled ''Tiny Skweeks''.
* ''VideoGame/SolomonsKey'' had two dolled-up editions: first for the UsefulNotes/PCEngine as a LicensedGame based on the Japanese samurai film ''Zipang'' (which also loosely inspired ''VideoGame/KabukiQuantumFighter''), and later for the UsefulNotes/GameBoyColor as ''VideoGame/MonsterRancher Explorer''.
* ''VideoGame/{{Turrican}} II'' was ported to the UsefulNotes/MegaDrive and released as a ''Film/UniversalSoldier'' game after going through a few sprite-swaps.
* ''VideoGame/StarRaiders II'' started life as a never-released LicensedGame based on 1984 movie ''Film/TheLastStarfighter''; prototypes of this for the UsefulNotes/{{Atari 5200}} and UsefulNotes/Atari8BitComputers have been found. When the license fell through, the game was released as a ''Star Raiders'' sequel instead. ''The Last Starfighter'' for the NES, in turn, was a rebranded port of the computer game ''Uridium''.
* ''VideoGame/KirbysEpicYarn'' was originally planned as a completely unrelated game starring Prince Fluff, who remained in the final product as the second playable character in multiplayer. Nintendo decided it wouldn't sell, so they brought Kirby into the mix.
* The UsefulNotes/GameAndWatch game ''Boxing'' was rereleased in 1988 as ''VideoGame/PunchOut'', though it has no resemblance to any other game in that series.
* ''Dan Dare 3'' for the ZX Spectrum. Programmer Dave Perry: "This was actually a game called "Crazy Jet Racer", then when Fergus saw it, he asked if we could change it to "Dan Dare III". So that's what happened. Crazy Jet was about a robot on a unicycle."
* The first Series/AlarmFuerCobra11 game. It was a cheap game using the game engine, graphics and even ''levels'' from the cheap London Racer II. Obviously, being the latter a game of street racing, what's the plot of the dolled-up installment? Infiltrate into a street racing gang. The only reason why pursuit is in the game is because ''it was already half-coded in London Racer II''.
* In-universe example: in the ''VideoGame/DotHackGU'' titles, the original version of the MMO "The World" was destroyed when its servers were caught in a fire on company property, resulting in the loss of most of the game's data. CC Corp merged what was left (including the BlackBox folder, the core of the game) with another title they were working on to form "The World Revision 2", which the GU games take place in.
* ''VideoGame/OutRun 2019'' was originally planned as an unrelated futuristic racing game titled ''Junker's High'', which was actually a converted version of a canceled UsefulNotes/SegaCD game titled ''Cyber Road''.
* ''Videogame/DiddyKongRacing'' was originally planned as a sequel to ''R.C. Pro-Am''.
* There are many pirated games which amount to nothing more than an obscure game with a more popular character's sprite hacked in to replace the hero, which is, perhaps, this concept concentrated to its purest form (if lacking the power of {{Canon}}). For example:
** ''[[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DOIdoUp-YEs Super Mario 7]]'' (or ''[[WordSaladTitle 7 Grand Dad]]'' as the title screen [[InconsistentDub bizarrely calls it]]), a hack of ''VideoGame/TheFlintstonesTheRescueOfDinoAndHoppy'' for NES with Mario's face pasted onto Fred's body.
** ''[[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2Svz2E_uCyE Sonic Jam 6]]'', a pirate port of the original ''VideoGame/SuperMarioBros'' to the Sega Genesis with Sonic instead of Mario.
** The Famicom game ''VideoGame/{{Somari}}'' is a pirated knockoff of ''VideoGame/SonicTheHedgehog'' starring Mario.
** The ''[[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AxBija0Nwo4 Sonic the Hedgehog game for the Super NES]]'' is a pirated knockoff of ''[[WesternAnimation/LooneyTunes Speedy Gonzales: Los Gatos Banditos]]'' starring Sonic, with Mario replacing the captured mice. All of them.
** ''New Super Mario World'' for the UsefulNotes/SegaGenesis is a hack of ''Squirrel King'', a Russian bootleg remake of ''VideoGame/ChipNDaleRescueRangers''.
** The Korean UsefulNotes/ArcadeGame ''[[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zZHyKL2V05Q Candory]]'' is ''VideoGame/{{Ponpoko}}'' with Mario's sprite hacked in.
** Back in the day of the Famicom's (as well as Mario's) popularity, pirated hacks of games with [[Franchise/SuperMarioBros Mario]]'s head pasted on top of the original player character were common. Such examples include ''WesternAnimation/TinyToonAdventures'', ''VideoGame/AdventureIsland II'', ''VideoGame/JackieChansActionKungFu'', ''Armadillo'', ''VideoGame/JoeAndMac'', ''Don Doko Don 2'' and ''Kid Niki 3''. And they're still doing it up until this day!
* This was also somewhat common with arcade games, especially during TheEighties:
** ''VideoGame/DonkeyKong'' was reworked into ''[[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bRn-ti2Vnjo Crazy Kong]]''.
** ''[[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fu6JU5fFG_I Hangly-Man]]'' is basically ''VideoGame/PacMan'' with different levels.
** The arcade ''VideoGame/NinjaGaiden'' had a Korean bootleg which hacked it into ''[[Manga/DragonBall Dragon Bowl]]'' (sic).
* ''VideoGame/KidIcarusUprising'' originally wasn't planned to have anything to do with the ''VideoGame/KidIcarus'' series. Nintendo and Sakurai were just working on a UsefulNotes/Nintendo3DS action game involving sky and land combat when they suddenly realized that Pit would be the perfect character for such a title.
* ''Yo! Noid'', a side-scrolling platform game for the NES by Capcom starring Domino's Pizza's now-retired mascot (The Noid), was a graphic hack of a Famicom game titled ''Masked Ninja Hanamaru'', which was originally about a boy ninja who attacks enemies with his bird.
* Way, way back in the waning days of the UsefulNotes/{{Atari 2600}}, Atari changed their unreleased game ''Saboteur'' into a licensed game of ''Series/TheATeam'' by changing around some text and replacing the hero sprite with... Creator/MrT's disembodied head. (The result was also unreleased.)
* ''Super VideoGame/{{Pitfall}} II'' for the NES, which never went past prototype stage, was actually a scrapped localization of ''VideoGame/AtlantisNoNazo''.
* When the computer game ''Sleepwalker'' created for the British charity telethon UsefulNotes/ComicRelief was released on the SNES in the US, it was changed into an ''WesternAnimation/EekTheCat'' game. Instead of playing as a dog trying to get his young boy owner back home [[NeverWakeUpASleepwalker without waking him up]], you play as Eek and whoever you're helping depends on the level. Speaking of the levels, most of them are ripped straight from the original. Only the UFO level was original.
* ''VideoGame/JamesBond007TheStealthAffair'' was originally not a ''Franchise/JamesBond'' game, though it was practically a SpiritualAdaptation to begin with. The publisher managed to gain the license for the ''James Bond'' name for video games, and all that was necessary to apply that to the game were some minor changes to the text.
* Creator/{{Capcom}}'s classic overhead run'n gun game ''Senjō no Ōkami'' (Wolf of the Battlefield) was released outside Japan under the name of ''Commando'', while a later unrelated side-scrolling platformer titled ''Top Secret'', was released overseas as ''VideoGame/BionicCommando''. Although the two games originally had nothing to do with each other, the developers of the NES version of Bionic attempted to strengthen the connection by adding Super Joe (the hero from ''Commando'') as a supporting character, as well as overhead segments that play a lot like ''Commando''.
* The ''KOF Maximum Impact'' series is a spin-off of the main ''VideoGame/TheKingOfFighters'' series. However, that didn't stop SNK's US division from rebranding ''Maximum Impact 2'' into ''The King of Fighters 2006''.
* When ''VideoGame/{{Shatterhand}}'' was imported to Japan, it was reskinned into a Licensed game of ''Series/TokkyuuShireiSolbrain''.
* In Australia, ''VideoGame/BeetleAdventureRacing'' is instead called "HSV Adventure Racing". It features HSV cars instead of VW Beetles, and the announcer was changed to sound more like a stereotypical Australian.
* Tec Toy, Creator/{{Sega}}'s Brazilian distributor, replaced or added their own licenses to localized versions of several UsefulNotes/SegaMasterSystem games - and some [[UsefulNotes/SegaGenesis Mega Drive]] ones as well:
** ''VideoGame/WonderBoyInMonsterLand'' and ''VideoGame/WonderBoyIIITheDragonsTrap'' became ''[[ComicBook/MonicasGang Mônica no Castelo do Dragão]][[labelnote:translation]]"Monica in the Castle of the Dragon"[[/labelnote]]'' and ''Turma da Mônica em: O Resgate''[[labelnote:translation]]"Monica's Gang in: The Rescue"[[/labelnote]]; ''VideoGame/WonderBoyInMonsterWorld'' on the UsefulNotes/MegaDrive was also turned into a ''[[ComicBook/MonicasGang Turma da Mônica]]'' game.
** ''Ghost House'' became ''[[Series/ElChapulinColorado Chapolim x Drácula: Um Duelo Assustador]]''.
** ''Teddy Boy'' became ''Geraldinho''.
** ''VideoGame/PsychoFox'' became ''Sapo Xulé vs. Os Invasores do Brejo''.
** ''Kung Fu Kid'' became ''Sapo Xulé: O Mestre do Kung Fu''.
** ''Astro Warrior'' was rereleased as ''Sapo Xulé: S.O.S. Lagoa Poluída''.
** ''ComicBook/{{Asterix}} and the Secret Mission'' became ''As Aventuras da TV Colosso''.
* The fourth and last game in Taito's ''Rastan'' series, ''Warrior Blade: Rastan vs Barbarian Saga'', was a Japanese conversion of ''Barbarian'', an unrelated arena fighter by Creator/TitusSoftware.
* Creator/DataEast's ''WesternAnimation/TheRealGhostbusters'' UsefulNotes/ArcadeGame was an unrelated run-and-gun shooter released in Japan as ''Meikyuu Hunter G'' with some ''Ghostbusters'' elements pasted in.
* ''Manga/UruseiYatsura: Lum no Wedding Bell'' for the Famicom is actually a port of the Jaleco UsefulNotes/ArcadeGame ''Momoko 120%'' with the heroine replaced with Lum and the aliens replaced with ones from the series. The original was a SpiritualAdaptation to begin with, though.
* Variant: The game that became ''VideoGame/SuperSmashBros'' was conceived as a unique title before eventually being converted into a MascotFighter.
* ''Doraemon: Meikyū Daisakusen'' (Doraemon's Great Maze Tactics) for the UsefulNotes/PCEngine is a port of the Nichibutsu UsefulNotes/ArcadeGame ''Kid no Hore Hore Daisakusen'' (AKA ''Booby Kids'') with the arcade game's original protagonist replaced with Anime/{{Doraemon}}, the end-of-level double doors with the Dokodemo Door, the InexplicableTreasureChests with [[TrademarkFavoriteFood Dorayaki]], and the robotic FinalBoss with Tsuchidama and Giga Zombie from the movie ''Nobita at the Birth of Japan'', which inspired some new cutscenes. The localized [=TurboGrafx-16=] version, retitled ''Cratermaze'', brought back the original protagonist, music and treasure chests and replaced Giga Zombie with an {{Expy}}, though the doors weren't changed back and the cutscenes were edited rather than removed.
* Creator/{{Konami}}'s early {{UsefulNotes/MSX}} game ''Athletic Land'' was re-released as ''Franchise/CabbagePatchKids: Adventures in the Park'', with the player character redrawn as Anna Lee and a few other minor changes.
* ''VideoGame/BlasterMaster Boy'' was developed in Japan as a sequel to ''Bomber King'' (otherwise known by the MarketBasedTitle ''VideoGame/RoboWarrior''), but Creator/{{Sunsoft}} decided to release it in the U.S. and Europe as a sequel to one of their own games. This explains why it lacks platforming and vehicle action but does have a lot of blowing up blocks with bombs.
* ''The Ren & Stimpy Show: Space Cadet Adventures'' takes a few levels from ''VideoGame/TheAdventuresOfRockyAndBullwinkleAndFriends'', such as those taking place in outer space, and replaces the R&B characters with Ren & Stimpy characters. Both of these UsefulNotes/GameBoy titles were developed by Creator/AbsoluteEntertainment and published by Creator/{{THQ}}.
* The long history of this (see the film section above) in the ''Franchise/DieHard'' franchise also extends to video games. The original ''Die Hard'' coin-op and UsefulNotes/SegaSaturn game was originally released in Japan as ''[[VideoGame/DynamiteCop Dynamite Deka]]'', which was completely unrelated to the movie. It was given the ''Die Hard'' license for the international release, because it happened to feature a cop fighting his way through a terrorist-infested skyscraper before confronting a bearded BigBad, and suffering increasing ClothingDamage as the game progressed. The sequel, ''Dynamite Deka 2'', averts this by being released as ''Dynamite Cop''.
* ''[[WesternAnimation/TheSimpsons Krusty's Fun House]]'' was originally an UsefulNotes/{{Amiga}} game named ''Rat Trap''.
* The ''Wrestling/{{WCW}}'' game for the UsefulNotes/NintendoEntertainmentSystem was the Famicom game ''Superstar Pro Wrestling'' with the Japanese wrestlers replaced.
* Two games in the ''River King'' series were dolled up in Europe as ''Harvest Fishing''. Developed by the same company as the ''VideoGame/HarvestMoon'' series, the ''River King'' games have no direct relation, occasional cameos aside.
* The game that became ''VideoGame/XRebirth'' was initially going to be an entirely new IP. During development Egosoft realized it was making an ''[[VideoGame/{{X}} X-Universe]]'' game in all but name and basically said, "The heck with it; let's make a new ''X''." Frankly, that was what the fans wanted anyway.
* The 1980s ''Series/DoctorWho'' computer game ''Doctor Who and the Mines of Teror'' started life as a sequel to the UsefulNotes/BBCMicro game ''Castle Quest'', before the Sixth Doctor, a robot cat, and robots-that-definitely-aren't-the-Daleks were added.
* ''VideoGame/BuckRogersPlanetOfZoom'' apparently originated as a game titled ''Zoom 909''; it has no real connections to ''ComicStrip/BuckRogers'' beyond the title screen. Interestingly, Creator/{{Sega}} announced three other games for the UsefulNotes/{{Atari 2600}} based on the same license, but due to UsefulNotes/TheGreatVideoGameCrashOf1983 none of them saw the light of day.
* Creator/{{Sega}}'s UsefulNotes/ArcadeGame ''Strike Fighter'' was similar enough to ''VideoGame/AfterBurner'' that it was ported to the UsefulNotes/SegaCD and UsefulNotes/FMTowns as ''After Burner III''.
* The obscure pirate original UsefulNotes/{{Famicom}} game ''Harry's Legend'' is actually a hacked version of an even more obscure game called ''[[WritingAroundTrademarks Titenic]]''.
* ''Quest Fantasy Challenge'' is a game made for the Game Boy Color, based on the ''VideoGame/{{Quest 64}}'' license. The only problem is that it has absolutely nothing to do with the Quest series, and is actually a port of ''VideoGame/MrDo''.
* ''Kong Strikes Back!'' combined the characters of ''VideoGame/DonkeyKong'' with the gameplay of ''VideoGame/MrDo's Wild Ride'', which itself might have been dolled-up from a game called ''Go! Go! Coaster''.
* The UsefulNotes/ArcadeGame ''VideoGame/LethalEnforcers 3'' was called ''Seigi no Hero'' in Japan, and is actually a SpiritualSuccessor to ''VideoGame/{{Police 911}}''.
* ''[[VideoGame/{{Nebulus}} Castelian]]'' was released in Japan as ''Kyorochan Land'', with the protagonist replaced by the Morinaga chocolate mascot.
* Inverted in ''VideoGame/{{Homeworld}}''. The writer wanted to make a ''Series/{{Battlestar Galactica|1978}}'' game (this was before the [[Series/BattlestarGalactica2003 reboot]]), but couldn't get the rights. So they changed the plot a little bit and the ships a lot, and voila!
* ''Space Raiders'' was reissued in Japan by the publisher of ''[[VideoGame/EarthDefenseForce2017 Earth Defense Forces]]'' series as part of the Simple 2000 series under the title ''Chikyuu Shinryakugun'' (''Earth Invasion Force'').
* ''VideoGame/TengaiMakyou: Deden no Den'' was one of two multiplayer-only promotional editions of ''VideoGame/{{Bomberman 94}}'', replacing Bomberman with Kabuki.
* ''The Incredible Toon Machine'' was dolled up in Japan as the ''VideoGame/GhostsNGoblins'' game ''Nazomakaimura'', with Arthur and Astaroth taking the place of Sid and Al.
* Originally, ''VideoGame/{{Xenoblade}}'' was going to be a standalone game called "''Monado: Beginning of the World''," with the name change coming later to connect it to the other [[VideoGame/{{Xenogears}} Xeno]] [[VideoGame/{{Xenosaga}} titles]]. [[TropesAreNotBad Even so, it had enough similarity to its predecessors]] in both [[HumongousMecha themes]] and [[{{Expy}} character traits]] that many players couldn't tell it wasn't in the same continuity.
* ''WesternAnimation/TheJetsons: Invasion of the Planet Pirates'' was originally developed by Creator/StingEntertainment for the Western market. In Japan, it became ''Youkai Buster: Ruka no Daibouken'', starring the mascot of ''Marukatsu Super Famicom'' magazine.
* The UsefulNotes/GameBoy version of the PlatformGame known either as ''[=McDonaldland=]'' or ''M.C. Kids'' was dolled up in the U.S. and Japan as ''Spot: The Cool Adventure'', replacing one food promotion with another.
* In Amsoft's series of Roland games for the UsefulNotes/AmstradCPC, the first two releases, ''Roland in the Caves'' and ''Roland on the Ropes'', were rebranded conversions of Indescomp's UsefulNotes/ZXSpectrum games ''Bugaboo the Flea'' and ''Fred''. ''Roland Goes Digging'' was a ''VideoGame/SpacePanic'' knockoff, though not the only one released for the system.
* The ''Manga/WanganMidnight'' game for the UsefulNotes/PlayStation2 was essentially a rerelease of ''VideoGame/TokyoXtremeRacer Zero'' with very little changed aside from the use of licensed cars and drivers.
* ''Game Over 2'' was originally published in Spain as ''Phantis'', with no connection to ''Game Over'' (even though it had the same publisher).
* ''Baby T-Rex'', the UsefulNotes/GameBoy precursor to ''VideoGame/RadicalRex'', was released in the U.S. as ''WesternAnimation/WereBackADinosaursStory'', in Sweden as ''ComicBook/{{Bamse}}'', and in Australia as ''Agro Soar'' (starring the host of a Australian {{Puppet Show|s}} that otherwise has nothing to do with dinosaurs).
* ''VideoGame/PopfulMail'' ''nearly'' had this happen to it. It was originally planned to be called "Sister Sonic" and focus on a female hedgehog set in the ''Franchise/SonicTheHedgehog'' universe. However, fans found out and flipped their lid, saving the game from the change.
* ''VideoGame/SuperMarioKart'' was originally going to be a generic racing game meant solely to provide a 2-player counterpart to the 1-player hit ''VideoGame/FZero'' a few years earlier. During production someone suggested seeing what it would look like to put Mario in a go-kart, and history was made.
* The SNES version of ''Cosmo Gang: The Puzzle'', a FallingBlocks puzzle game from Namco featuring silly cartoon aliens which originally appeared in the mechanical LightGunGame ''Cosmo Gang'', was released internationally with redone graphics and music as ''[[Franchise/PacMan Pac-Attack]]/Pac-Panic'', a Falling Blocks puzzle game featuring Pac-Man, many Blinkies, and a fairy from ''Pac-Land''. Evidently, Namco decided the gameplay fit Pac-Man better, as all later ports of the game were released even in Japan with the Pac-Man skin (although its appearance as a minigame in ''VideoGame/PacManWorld 2'' seemingly pays homage to its roots with the background art).
* Once upon a time, [[Creator/BandaiNamcoEntertainment Namco]] released a tennis game for the [[UsefulNotes/PlayStation PS1]] called ''Smash Court Tennis'' featuring [[SuperDeformed chibi-style]] player characters, which was eventually deleted and is quite rare in the West at least. Then there was a sequel, titled simply ''Smash Court 2'' in Japan. When translated for the Western market, it somehow managed to get itself endorsed by Russian tennis star Anna Kournikova and became known as ''Anna Kournikova's Smash Court Tennis'' (complete with chibified Kournikova as one of the playable characters!) This version is considerably easier to find than its predecessor.
* ''Game & Wario'' was not originally meant to be part of the ''VideoGame/WarioWare'' series, as explained in the game's promotional ''Iwata Asks'' interview. It was first designed as several generic TechDemos pre-installed on the UsefulNotes/WiiU before being retooled as a new IP featuring expended version of said tech demos. Difficulties linking the minigames together in a coherent storyline lead to the development team scrapping the original framing device and use the ''[=WarioWare=]'' characters.
* ''[[WesternAnimation/LooneyTunes Taz]]'' for the Atari 2600 was changed into an ''ComicBook/{{Asterix}}'' game when it was released in Europe.
* ''WesternAnimation/{{Thundercats|1985}}: The Lost Eye of Thundera'', the LicensedGame released for various computers by Elite Systems, seems to have originated as an unreleased game titled ''Samurai Dawn'', whose only known screenshot in ''Magazine/ComputerAndVideoGames'' shows a definite resemblance.
* On October 28th, 2015, Creator/ScottCawthon pretended that the official website for ''VideoGame/FiveNightsAtFreddysWorld'' was hacked with a download link to the leaked game. When players downloaded it, it turned out to be a version an older game of Scott's, ''Fighter Mage Bard'', with the characters and enemies replaced with those from ''[=FNaF=] World''.
* ''F1'', an officially licensed UsefulNotes/FormulaOne game from Domark, was a slightly updated version of Lankhor's RacingGame ''Vroom''.
* The ''Premier Manager'' UsefulNotes/AssociationFootball management simulator series had three dolled-up installments released for PC in ''Premier Manager 97'', ''98'' and ''99''. They were developed by Dinamic Multimedia, creator of the ''PC Fútbol'' series that was a major success among spanish-speaking countries. Oddly, and despite the fact there were already English football-themed games in that series (Called ''PC Premier''), these three games were stripped-down versions (''97'' was one of ''PC Fútbol 5.0'' and ''98'' and ''99'' of ''PC Fútbol 6.0'', with ''99'' having some minor features of ''PC Fútbol 7'' and ''PC Fútbol 2000''), with everything that was accesible in the main menu, bar its three game modes (Friendly, Manager and Promanager), being removed.
* French software house Titus made a game based upon a OneHitWonder novelty song by a French comedian, Lagaf'. The game was called ''Lagaf': Les Aventures de Moktar - [[Title1 Vol 1]]: [[ColonCancer La Zoubida]]''. Upon realizing nobody outside France knew who the hell Lagaf' was, they turned his sprite into their company mascot, a fox, and released the (mostly unchanged) game again as ''VideoGame/TitusTheFox''.
* ''Sidewinder II'' was originally an independently-developed UsefulNotes/AtariST game titled ''Blast''. Virgin Mastertronic gave it wider distribution after rebranding it as a sequel to the Arcadia game ''Sidewinder'', to which it bears no relation aside from also being a VerticalScrollingShooter.
* The Japanese game ''VideoGame/LoveLiveSchoolIdolFestival'' spawned a ''Series/{{Glee}}''-themed remake known as ''Glee Forever''.
* Billiards game ''Side Pocket 2'' for the Sega Genesis and Saturn was released in North America as ''Minnesota Fats: Pool Legend'', adding in said legend among other things.
* Music creation game ''Music 2000'' for the [=PlayStation=] was called ''MTV Music Generator'' in North America.
* ''VideoGame/MadMax2015'' is a weird case. It has been in production for years but was a separate story in the Mad Max universe. However, since its release date fell close to ''Film/MadMaxFuryRoad'', more references to the movie were added, though it did not become a true licensed game like in most cases.
* According to WordOfGod, ''VideoGame/AgeOfEmpiresIII'' started as an unrelated game to the ''VideoGame/AgeOfEmpires'' franchise. Then UsefulNotes/{{Microsoft}}, wanting to cash in to the franchise, pushed Creator/EnsembleStudios in order to add the AOE brand to the game.
* In a case of TropesAreNotBad, ''VideoGame/WolfensteinTheNewOrder'' was originally supposed to be a separate game all on its own. But when Creator/MachineGames couldn't get it off the ground, they settled on taking the Wolfenstein brand instead, taking most of the ideas from the original project and transplanting them into the game we see today. The result was a game which [[WinBackTheCrowd managed to revive interest]] in the franchise after [[VideoGame/{{Wolfenstein2009}} the modern shooter attempt several years earlier]]. It is telling that [[VideoGame/WolfensteinTheOldBlood the next]] two [[VideoGame/WolfensteinIITheNewColossus installments of]] the franchise follow and improve on the model set by TNO - and, for that matter, that they didn't take [[SequelGap five-plus years to come out]] as has been the tradition for the ''Wolfenstein'' series ever since ''3D''.
* ''VideoGame/OperationFlashpoint: Cold War Crisis'', due to the split between Creator/{{Codemasters}}, who owned the franchise name, and Creator/BohemiaInteractive, who owned the game's code and went on to develop the SpiritualSuccessor ''VideoGame/ArmA'', was rebranded as ''[=ArmA=]: Cold War Assault'' upon its 2011 rerelease.
* Averted for the Super NES game ''Jim Power: The Lost Dimension in 3-D'', which, [[http://www.nintendolife.com/news/2014/07/buck_rogers_snes_prototype_materializes based on an alleged prototype ROM]], had started development as a DolledUpInstallment of the French computer title ''Jim Power in Mutant Planet'' as ''ComicStrip/BuckRogers: The Arcade Game''. It was then finished and released as a ''Jim Power'' game, essentially becoming a semi-remake of ''Mutant Planet'', when developer Loriciel couldn't secure the ''Buck Rogers'' license. This would account for Jim Power looking [[http://www.mobygames.com/game/snes/jim-power-the-lost-dimension-in-3d/screenshots/gameShotId,60836/ completely different]] in ''The Lost Dimension'' compared to ''[[http://www.mobygames.com/game/amiga/jim-power-in-mutant-planet/screenshots/gameShotId,90066/ Mutant Planet]]'', as well as why he uses a [[http://www.mobygames.com/game/snes/jim-power-the-lost-dimension-in-3d/screenshots/gameShotId,60840/ spaceship]] in the ShootEmUp stages instead of a [[http://www.mobygames.com/game/amiga/jim-power-in-mutant-planet/screenshots/gameShotId,90082/ jetpack suit]].

* ''Webcomic/KidRadd 2'' (a fictional game within the comic) resembles the original ''Kid Radd'' in name and main characters only, to Radd's dismay. It somewhat resembles ''VideoGame/SuperMarioBros2'', in that the "damsel in distress" is playable and the heroes can lift and throw enemies, and the physics are different in other subtle ways.
* Spoofed when Website/PlatypusComix featured a ''Webcomic/{{Mulberry}}'' comic with artwork taken from ''Webcomic/{{Shadowgirls}}''.
* ''Webcomic/{{Bobwhite}}'': [[http://www.bobwhitecomics.com/?webcomic_post=20100216 This guest comic]] shows young Cleo's distraught reaction to ''Mario 2''.

[[folder:Western Animation ]]
* The ''WesternAnimation/StarTrekTheAnimatedSeries'' episode "[[Recap/StarTrekTheAnimatedSeriesS1E14TheSlaverWeapon The Slaver Weapon]]" was adapted by Creator/LarryNiven from his short story "Literature/TheSoftWeapon", with the Pierson's Puppeteer being replaced by Mr. Spock, and the ''Enterprise'' crew standing in for the other humans opposing the Kzinti.
* ''WesternAnimation/MichelVaillant'', a French animated series based on a comic book of the same name about a heroic race car driver who keeps getting mixed up in crime and espionage, aired in the United States on the Family Channel (now known as ABC Family) under the title of ''Heroes on Hot Wheels''. The show had nothing to do with the ''HotWheels'' toyline, other than the fact that Mattel sponsored the English dub.
* The origins of ''WesternAnimation/ScoobyDooOnZombieIsland'' began as an unfinished episode of ''WesternAnimation/SwatKats'', oddly enough (though this might explain a few things- the DarkerAndEdgier tone, the cat-themed villains, etc.) As a side note, parts of the ''SK'' script were ''also'' recycled for an episode of ''WesternAnimation/TheRealAdventuresOfJonnyQuest''.
* An in-universe meta-example in ''WesternAnimation/TheSimpsons'': in "The 138th Episode Spectacular" Troy McClure summarizes the origin of the show as “an old drunk made humans out of his rabbit characters to pay off his gambling debts.”
* The ''WesternAnimation/RickAndMorty'' episode, ''[[Recap/RickAndMortyS1E2LawnmowerDog Lawnmower Dog]]'' was based on a rejected series that Creator/JustinRoiland pitched called ''Dog World''. It was about a family transported to an alternate universe where sentient dogs kept people as pets.

* Prior to the release of the Nokia 5800 [=XpressMusic=], Nokia had dabbled with touchscreen smartphones in the early 2000s. One of these was the Nokia 6708, which had essentially nothing to do with the Finnish firm apart from the name as this is a licensed variant of the [[http://phonesdata.com/en/smartphones/benq/p31-123/ BenQ P31]] running off UIQ, a departure from the Series 60 UI Nokia used on their smartphones from the decade.