Legacy Boss Battle
A Legacy Boss Battle is a boss from one game that appears as a boss in a later installment, often as a Bonus Boss and as a result generally much harder than the original boss fight. Though some storyline bosses can fit as well. If the boss' game of origin is from another franchise, then these may be Mythology Gags or Lawyer Friendly Cameos. Of important note is that most Legacy bosses are only fightable in the post-game and don't have any role in the plot. So Big Bad Final Boss examples don't qualify unless the Big Bad of the game his cameo is in is different, or because the fight feels more familiar than the context would indicate. Compare and contrast Degraded Boss, Recurring Boss Template, Previous Player-Character Cameo, Sudden Sequel Heel Syndrome, Giant Space Flea from Nowhere. Nostalgia Level is the Level version.
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- Metroid: Ridley, a Space Pirate pterodactyl/dragon-thing, has made an appearance for a boss fight in every game in the franchise except for three.note He is also the Arch-Enemy of the series's protagonist, Samus Aran, after having killed her biological family and the adoptive Chozo family on planet Zebes.
- Illusion of Gaia has Solid Arm, a boss originally from the first game in the series, Soul Blazer, who's only fightable if you collect all fifty Red Jewels.
- Onimusha 3: Demon Siege has two fights against Marcellus - the first a full-on boss battle, the second a Degraded Boss encounter. He originally appeared in Onimusha: Warlords, in which he was also fought twice.
Hack and Slash
- In Mega Man ZX, Omega from Mega Man Zero 3 appears as a Bonus Boss in the N area. Defeating him nets you the Model O Biometal, the strongest in the game. If you have completed both Zero 3 and 4 in their cartridges, linking them to the DS slot can let you fight 4 of each game's bosses in the same area and defeating them all gives you the same reward.
- In Mega Man Zero 3, taking a secret detour in the second fortress stage will take you to a teleporter. Go inside, and you'll meet Phantom from the first game, or rather his "ghost" since he died. Defeat him and you'll get the Infinity Plus One Foot Chip.
- After defeating all the robot masters in Mega Man 3, four new stages open up, each having a "Doc Bot" as mid boss and end boss. The Doc Bots all take on the exact same attack pattern of one of the eight robot masters from Mega Man 2, and their sprite is even seen descending into the Doc Bot before the fight starts.
- Mega Man 10 has Downloadable Content, among them three stages featuring bosses from the Game Boy Mega Man (Classic) games. More specifically, the "Mega Man Killers." Also, the first Wily stage in 10 featured a boss called Weapons Archive which essentially recreated the battles from 9 bosses from the previous 10 games.
- Super Mario Galaxy 2's Boss Blitz Galaxy is a Boss Rush bonus mission, where all five bosses are ones from the original game not fought anywhere else.
- In Kirby's Return to Dream Land, Galacta Knight from Kirby Super Star Ultra appears as an extra boss in the True Arena. In this game, he cannot be fought everywhere else.
- In Kirby: Triple Deluxe, Dark Meta Knight from Kirby and The Amazing Mirror acts as the final boss of King Dedede's mode.
- Sonic the Hedgehog:
- A Pre-Final Boss example. In Sonic Advance's final stage, Dr. Eggman reprises the first bosses from both Sonic The Hedgehog 1 and Sonic the Hedgehog 2, complete with the boss themes from both games, before the actual Final Boss battle occurs. And there seems to be no other reason for Eggman to go to the trouble of reenacting fights that he had lost before.
- In Sonic the Hedgehog 4 Episode I, all of the boss fights start out as Legacy Bosses (though the Mad Gear boss works rather differently from its Metropolis Zone predecessor), befitting a game made entirely up of Nostalgia Levels. Episode II pretends it's going to do the same in Sylvania Castle, only to have the real boss turn up and destroy the Sonic 2 Call Back totem poles.
- Years before the above two, Sonic 3 & Knuckles had two boss fights partway through Sky Sanctuary Zone in which Metal Sonic piloted replicas of the first Sonic 1 boss and the Sonic 2 Metropolis Zone boss mentioned previously. Interestingly, while the bosses' behavior was essentially identical, the newer game's slightly different physics made the former more difficult and the latter considerably easier.
- The Black Plague fight in A2XT is an updated version of his original level in the rom-hack Super Mario Infinity, room design and battle mechanics included.
- In ActRaiser 2, you can fight the final boss from the first game by using the password "Xxxx Yyyy Zzzz".
Real Time Strategy
Role Playing Game
- The Trope Namer is Dragon Quest IX. In it, you can fight every single Big Bad (and some Dragons) from all the previous games as some of the Bonus Bosses. However they use the same grotto system as the other Bonus Bosses, but with a few differences. Such as only one floor, and the fact that you can level up the bosses by giving up the EXP rewards. Beating them usually gives you some cosplay gear related to their original games or some Orbs.
- Illusion of Gaia features a boss battle with the first boss of Soul Blazer in the bonus dungeon, assuming you can collect all fifty Red Jewels to access it.
- Sephiroth appears as a Bonus Boss in Kingdom Hearts 1 and Kingdom Hearts II. The first one as one of the coliseum matches with no context except for one Final Mix exclusive cutscene, the latter game has him cameo during the 1000 Heartless War where he asks where Cloud is, vanishes, and then taunts Cloud a little bit later.
- The Absent Silhouettes in Kingdom Hearts II: Final Mix are Bonus Bosses against the members of Organization XII that had "died" in Kingdom Hearts: Chain of Memories.
- Xehanort (or rather Xemnas and Young Xehanort) invert the trope; they first appeared as Bonus Bosses in Kingdom Hearts: Final Mix and Kingdom Hearts: Birth by Sleep, respectively, albeit with their identity hidden from the characters (and the audience).
- Pokémon has a few examples:
- Cynthia, Sinnoh's champion, appears as a Bonus Boss in Pokémon Black and White
- Later, in Pokémon Black 2 and White 2, you can face every Gym Leader and Champion from preceding games Most of them are fought in the World Tournament, but some of the retired Gym leaders from Black And White, and N are fought in different areas, and only one Gym Leader is excluded (Koga, as his daughter Janine took over as Gym Leader and is present instead).
- Metal Max 4's Downloadable Content Bosses are these. Including Noah and Ted Broiler.
- In later versions of Final Fantasy I starting with the Game Boy Advance version, there are bonus dungeons featuring four bosses each from Final Fantasy III, IV, V, and VI. There are no bosses from Final Fantasy II because that game is usually bundled with I.
- Lashiec, the penultimate boss of Phantasy Star I, returns in Phantasy Star IV, complete with his Air Castle dungeon.
- Phantasy Star Universe Ambition of the Illuminus features a boss battle against Mother Brain, a tribute to the end boss of Phantasy Star II. The battle's theme is even a hard-hitting techno remix of the final boss theme from PhSII.
- The Final Dungeon of Final Fantasy IV The After Years has bosses from I to VI, with only a couple of them being optional.
- Tales of Vesperia has previous Tales Series bosses fightable. Phantasia's Dhaos, Eternia's Shizel, Destiny's Barbatos, and Symphonia's Kratos are all opponents in the coliseum's 200-Man Melee.
- In the Bonus Dungeon of Mana Khemia: Alchemists of Al-Revis, you can fight the dark versions or Alvero, Yula, and Crowley, bosses from Atelier Iris 3.
- Golden Sun: Dark Dawn has two optional fights against the Star Magician and the Dullahan, two of the strongest Bonus Bosses of the previous game, now even stronger.
- The Updated Re-release of Bravely Default features optional bosses from Final Fantasy: The 4 Heroes of Light that will be distributed online.
- Ozzie, Slash, and Flea, a group of recurring bosses from Chrono Trigger, can be found and fought in the Bend of Time on the sequel Chrono Cross. Since they're only found during a New Game+, they're harder than in the original game.
- Dark Souls II has this in the form of The Old Dragonslayer, AKA Dragonslayer Ornstein and the Belfry Gargoyles (only this time you fight six of them, not two).
- ''Dark Chronicle" has the bonus dungeon Zelmite Mine, with the Big Bad, the Dark Genie, from the first game as the boss at the end.
- Both the Digital Devil Saga games does this with it's bonus bosses. The first game features Hito-Shura and the second game features the return of Satan.
Turn Based Strategy
- Many Nippon Ichi games in this genre have Bonus Boss battles against characters and bosses from other Nippon Ichi games. Often, the boss will be unlocked after defeating them.
- Perhaps the most iconic example is Baal, described as the strongest demon in existence and the strongest Bonus Boss in each game he appears in. Despite this status, Baal has suffered from being Demoted to Extra in later Nippon Ichi games. One game actually has him explicitly replaced by Makai Kingdom's Valvoga.
- When Baal isn't the final Bonus Boss, Pringer X usually is. Unlike Baal, Pringer X has less plot surrounding him, coming off as a random robot penguin that's insanely powerful.
- And then there's Asagi, who may be the silliest example here. In her initial appearance she was an Early-Bird Cameo Bonus Boss for a game still in development. When that game got cancelled, she reappeared as a Bonus Boss in other games in order to pull a Hostile Show Takeover. Since the player beats her, she tragically fails each time.
- Priere, the main character of La Pucelle, almost always appears as this trope in Disgaea games. The twist is that she appears in her demonic form from the secret joke ending of her game. This resulted in La Pucelle's remake having an Alternate Timeline Demon Priere story.
- Earlier Disgaea games have a fight against Marjoly, the Big Bad of Rhapsody A Musical Adventure. In Phantom Brave her servant Myao is fought instead. Later games have Majorly Demoted to Extra, first by becoming DLC in Disgaea 3, and then being absent in later games.
- Disgaea Dimension 2 has a boss fight against Darkdeath Evilman from Zettai Hero Project. He is specifically summoned to challenge the main character.
Light Gun Game
- Five Nights at Freddy's II features Golden Freddy as an opponent on the 6th night. While he was basically an Easter Egg in the original game who would rarely appear suddenly in the office and crash the game if you didn't immediately look away, in the sequel he wanders the halls with the other animatronics, though he's by far the deadliest of them all.