Recycled Title
Not the same movie.
You know what future historians will say about us, right? "There were two very different games called Wolfenstein released in the same twenty year period and the second was not, strictly speaking, a remake of the first. From this we conclude that the people of the early twenty-first century were taking the piss."
Yahtzee, Zero Punctuation

Coming up with a good title for a new work is hard. No wonder so many people just take the lazy way out and just stick a number on the end.

Of course, if you're really lazy, you could not bother with even the number, let alone a subtitle, and give the latest release in your series the same name as an earlier one- usually, the first installment, which will typically also be the series name. A variation includes (de-)pluralizing the previous title, or dropping the adjectives. Fans will typically give the later work a Fan Nickname.

Recycling titles became very common in mid and late 2000s.

This doesn't cover remakes, where the new work is explicitly a new version of the previous work. Re-imaginings, such as when a video game is released with significantly different versions on consoles and handhelds at the same time and with the same title, are borderline.

Often used when it might be embarrassing to admit how many times they've milked this particular cash cow. It may also be an attempt to bring in newcomers who don't want to catch up with all the past installments, since a title like Hero Spies IV: Avenging the Aftermath sounds like it might leave non-fans lost.

See also Similarly Named Works, which is when two or more entirely unrelated works happen to share the same title.


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    Comic Books 
  • Recycled titles are common in the Comic Book industry for companies to maintain copyright, especially Marvel Comics and DC Comics. When a new series is introduced with the same title as an older series, it will share the same title and be known as the next volume of that series, but, the numbering may reset at a later date as if it were continuing the numbering of the earlier series, so the series is alternately presented as both a newer series and an older series. This can be played with further when the series changes its title to something else during its run, and later spinoffs and mini-series are introduced based on the different title while the original title resumes. The titles of spinoffs and miniseries may be further recycled, sometimes with little to no connection to the prior story.
  • The Authority is a 1999 series, a 2003 series, a 2006 series, and a 2008 series.
  • DC Comics has:
  • Astonishing X-Men replaced the title of Uncanny X-Men during Age of Apocalypse. Astonishing X-Men was also a 1999 limited series, a 2004 ongoing series by Joss Whedon, and a 2017 series.
  • Captain America and the Falcon was the title of Captain America starting from issue #117. Captain America and the Falcon was also a 2004-2005 series.
  • Daredevil: The Man Without Fear was the tagline on the Daredevil ongoing series. There was also a 1993 miniseries, Daredevil: The Man Without Fear.
  • Fantastic Force is a 90s Fantastic Four spinoff and a 2009 miniseries.
  • Fantasy Masterpieces is a 1966 comic and a 1979 comic.
  • Gen¹³ is a 1994 miniseries and a 1994 series, a 2002 series, and a 2006 series.
  • Generation X is a 1994 comic, and a 2017 comic.
  • Glory is a 1993 series, a 1999 series, and a 2012 series.
  • Guardians of the Galaxy is a 1990 comic. A new Guardians of the Galaxy began in 2008 and 2013.
  • Journey into Mystery, a 1952 comic, ended with issue #125 and became Thor with issue #126. A second Journey into Mystery started in 1972. In 1996-1998, The Mighty Thor became Journey into Mystery from issue #503-521. In 2010, Thor became Journey into Mystery from issues #622-655.
  • Lady Death is a 1997 series by Chaos! Comics, and a 2010 series by Avatar Press/Boundless Comics.
  • Marvel Comics Presents is a 1988-1995 series, and a 2007-2009 series.
  • Marvel NOW! is a 2012 and 2016 Marvel tagline.
  • New Mutants is a 1982 series, a 2004 series that became New X-Men: Academy X, and a 2009 series.
  • Old Man Logan is a 2008 Wolverine storyline, a Secret Wars (2015) miniseries, and a 2017 series.
  • Uncanny X-Men was known as New X-Men in 2001. Another series, New X-Men: Academy X, was titled New X-Men from issues #20-46.
  • Phoenix Resurrection is a 1995 storyline about the Phoenix Force travelling to the Ultraverse, and a 2007 miniseries about Jean Grey's return.
  • Prophet is a 1992 series, and a 2012 series.
  • Punisher War Journal is a 1988 series and a 2007 series.
  • Secret Warriors is a 2009 series and a 2017 series.
  • Secret Wars (2015) features a whole many recycled titles, including Planet Hulk, Future Imperfect, Age of Apocalypse, The New Warriors, Armor Wars, Spider-Island, Marvel 1602, Squadron Supreme, Spider-Verse, Marvel Zombies, Runaways, Civil War, House of M, E Is for Extinction, Inferno, Infinity Gauntlet, Korvac Saga, and X-Tinction Agenda.
  • The Sensational Spider-Man was a 1996-1998 series. Marvel Knights Spider-Man was retitled The Sensational Spider-Man from issues #23-41. Another series titled Marvel Knights: Spider-Man ran from 2013-2014.
  • Vampirella is a 1969 series by Warren; a 1992 miniseries, 1997 series, and 2001 series by Harris Comics; and a 2010, 2014, 2016, and 2017 series by Dynamite Comics.
  • Web of Spider-Man ran from 1985-1995. Another Web of Spider-Man ran from 2009-2010, replacing Spider-Man Family and The Amazing Spider-Man Family.
  • Wolverine was a 1982 limited series. It was followed by a regular series starting in 1988, titled Wolverine.
  • Uncanny X-Men was known as The X-Men until issue #49, and X-Men until #113. A second series titled X-Men was given the Fan Nickname Adjectiveless X-Men.
  • X-Men Forever is a 2001 X-Men series. X-Men Forever is also a 2009 and 2010 series set in an alternate universe.
  • X-Men Prime is a tie-in to Age of Apocalypse and a tie-in to ResurrXion.
  • X-Men Unlimited is a 1993 series and a 2004 series.
  • X-O Manowar is a 1992 series, a 1996 series, and a 2012 series.
  • Youngblood is a 1992 series, and a 2004 series.

    Live-Action TV 




  • A famous example is Peter Gabriel, whose first four albums were self-titled, only being differentiated by their cover art. His US label got tired of it, and refused to release the fourth one unless he gave it a title, and he quickly thought of Security. It remained self-titled elsewhere. The first three albums are known by fans as Peter Gabriel I, II and III respectively, and the fourth is either known as IV or by its US title. Some also refer to the first three albums as "Car", "Scratch" and "Melt" in reference to the cover art.
  • Ditto Weezer, who have non-consecutive self-titled albums known for the color in their covers (Blue, Green and Red).
  • The Barbie album Barbie Sings! The Princess Movie Song Collection shares the title with the 1961 album Barbie Sings!.

     Video Games 
  • A Boy and His Blob - The Wii version is the only game in the series without a subtitle, as the original NES game had the subtitle "Trouble on Blobolonia". Still, the Wii version is usually referred to as A Boy and His Blob Wii.
  • Adventure Island could refer to the NES game released in Japan as Takahashi Meijin no Bōken Jima, or to the PC Engine game known as Dragon's Curse in the west, both produced by Hudson Soft. The only relation between the two games were the fact that they were both graphically modified ports of Westone games that were originally released by Sega (Wonder Boy and Wonder Boy III: The Dragon's Trap respectively).
  • Alien Syndrome - the original 1987 arcade game that was ported to various platforms and the 2007 multi-platform sequel.
  • Alien vs. Predator - Rebellion Developments has made not one, not two, but three separate games set in the same universe: Alien Vs Predator (1994, Atari Jaguar), Aliens versus Predator (1999, PC), and...Aliens versus Predator (2010, multiplatform). That's not even counting the SNES and CPS2 arcade versions, which are both titled Alien vs. Predator as well. Note that, unlike the above Jaguar game, this one has a period after vs! That makes it completely different.
  • Alone in the Dark - The fifth game is simply titled Alone in the Dark without a number.
  • The Bard's Tale is a 2004 game named after The Bard's Tale.
  • Battletoads - The original NES game, the Game Boy game, and the 1994 arcade game (which is sometimes referred to as Super Battletoads or Battletoads Arcade). To make matters more confusing, the original game was also ported to the Game Boy under the title Battletoads in Ragnarok's World.
  • Beyond Shadowgate - the TurboGrafx-16 CD sequel to Shadowgate, and a teased sequel to the 2014 remake of the original game. Why not consider it just a remake of said sequel, then? Because it stars the hero of Shadowgate 64 instead.
  • Bionic Commando - the arcade, NES and Game Boy versions were released in Japan under the titles of Top Secret, Hitler no Fukkatsu: Top Secret (The Resurrection of Hitler) and Bionic Commando, in that order. Only the third one could be considered a port, since it's based on the NES version, which was more of a sequel/spinoff of the original arcade version than a port. Later, Capcom commissioned the development of another sequel in 2009 for the PS3 and Xbox 360 simply titled Bionic Commando as well.
  • Bishi Bashi - The 2009 entry in the series is simply called The BishiBashi.
  • Castlevania:
    • The original on the NES in 1987, then on the N64 in 1999. The latter tends to be called "Castlevania 64" to the extent that many people assume that's the actual title. Moreover, Castlevania: Circle of the Moon was known simply as Castlevania in Europe, as was Castlevania: Lament of Innocence in both, Japan and Europe.
    • In Japan, the games known in the west as Castlevania (the NES one), Vampire Killer (MSX2), Haunted Castle (arcade) and Super Castlevania IV (SNES) are all titled Akumajō Dracula, as was the X68000 game later ported to the PS as Castlevania Chronicles. On one hand, the English title change clears a lot of ambiguity between what are practically five completely different games (not just ports of the same title) by making it easier to tell each game apart by name. On the other hand, this also obscured the relation Vampire Killer and Haunted Castle had with the series (since they did not carry the Castlevania moniker overseas) and caused the common misconception that Super Castlevania IV is a continuation of the NES trilogy rather than a retelling of Simon Belmont's first venture into Dracula's castle.
    • In addition to the MSX2 game, Vampire Killer was also the title of the Japanese version of Castlevania: Bloodlines.
  • Cobra Command was the title of two different arcade games by Data East. The first one was an animated laserdisc game released in 1984 (titled Thunder Storm in Japan) and ported many years later to the Sega CD. The other was a side-scrolling shoot-'em-up released in 1988, with a NES port that same year.
  • Contra - Could refer to the 1987 arcade, its 1988 NES conversion, or the 1991 Game Boy game titled Operation C in North America.
    • In Europe, Probotector could refer to the first NES game, the Game Boy game, and the Mega Drive game.
    • The NES sequel, Probotector II: Return of the Evil Forces, is not to be confused with Probotector 2, which was the Game Boy port of Super Probotector: Alien Rebels.
  • CryEngine - The fourth major version of Crytek's proprietary engine will be dropping the number and be named simply CryEngine like the original, apparently to emphasize how different it is from the previous versions.
  • Dance Dance Revolution - Not counting ports, there's the 1998 arcade original, the US-exclusive PlayStation release (which used the DanceDanceRevolution 3rdMIX engine and featured songs from 1st through 3rdMIX), the 2010 version for consoles (namely PS3, Xbox 360 and Wii). The 2013 arcade release, with the year sometimes appended as a Fan Nickname to avoid confusion with the original 1998 release. Similarly, the 2013 versions of Guitar Freaks and DrumMania are simply called GITADORA, a common Fan Nickname for the long-running series.
  • Devil May Cry - The reboot by Ninja Theory is titled DmC: Devil May Cry. Taking the acronym into consideration: yes, it's actually called "Devil May Cry: Devil May Cry".
  • The 2015 arcade Continuity Reboot of Dissidia: Final Fantasy is simply called just that.
  • Donkey Kong - The original 1981 arcade game, and the 1994 Game Boy version. Could be said to be a remake, since the first four stages of the GB game are based on the arcade, but the mechanics are changed and there's about 96 more levels after that. The GB game is generally known as Donkey Kong '94 or Game Boy Donkey Kong.
  • Doom - The first game and the fourth game are both simply known as Doom.
  • Double Dragon - The original 1987 arcade beat-'em-up and the 1995 Neo-Geo head-to-head fighting game based on the movie. The former got several redesigned ports on 8-bit platforms (namely the NES, Master System and Game Boy), as well as a few legitimate remakes on the Game Boy Advance and smartphones.
  • The 2014 Mobile Phone Game Dungeon Keeper is named after the original Dungeon Keeper.
  • Dragon Ball Z: Budokai was released in Japan simply as Dragon Ball Z. It was technically the first game to be called that though, as all the prior DBZ games in Japan (all the way up to Kyōshū! Saiyajin on the original Famicom) had a subtitle.
  • EarthBound - Nintendo of American planned to localize the original Mother for the NES under the title of Earth Bound (spelled as two words) in 1991, but then canceled it so they could focus all their marketing budget on the launch of the Super NES. They would reuse that title for the English version of Mother 2, spelling it as one word (EarthBound) instead of two. When the NES prototype was leaked in the late 1990's, certain ROM hacks had the title screen altered to EarthBound Zero to distinguish it from its SNES sequel. When the original Mother was finally released on the Wii U Virtual Console, it was given the title of EarthBound Beginnings overseas.
  • Gauntlet 1985 and 2014.
  • The fourth core installment of the God of War Series is simply called "God of War", reflecting the change of setting (from Greek Mythology to Norse).
  • Hitman - The sixth entry is the first one that is simply titled Hitman. The original game in the series bore the subtitle of Codename 47.
  • Killer Instinct - Seventeen years after the release of Killer Instinct Gold (the last release) and nineteen years after the namesake it recycles was released, Microsoft understandably did not dub the Xbox One installment Killer Instinct 3 and instead opted for just the plain title.
  • King's Quest - A new game is planned for 2015, simply called King's Quest. This will be the ninth official game and the first since 1998.
  • Medal of Honor - The first on the PlayStation in 1999 and then in 2010 on the Xbox 360, PS3 and PC.
  • Mansion of Hidden Souls is the title of both the Sega CD original and its Saturn sequel.
  • Mega Man:
    • Mega Man (the original series) - Differentiating the numbered NES and Game Boy titles can get a bit tricky. With the exception of the first Game Boy game, which was subtitled Dr. Wily's Revenge, all the sequels used Roman numerals on their title screens, until Capcom began unifiying the title logos with Mega Man 8, 9 and 10. Fan communities generally use Arabic numerals for the NES versions (due to the logos used on their packaging art, which are designed differently from the title screen versions) and Roman numerals for their Game Boy counterparts. This was never an issue in Japan, where the Rockman sequels on the Famicom used Arabic numerals and subtitles (e.g. Rockman 2: Dr. Wily no Nazo), whereas the Game Boy versions were actually part of a separate spinoff brand titled Rockman World.
    • A Mega Man Game Gear game and a DOS game are titled Mega Man.
    • Mega Man X - The two Mega Man Xtreme spinoffs were titled Rockman X: Cyber Mission and Rockman X2: Soul Eraser in Japan. Which makes sense, since they are more or less straight ported-down versions of Mega Man X 1-3 with a new story.
  • Metal Gear Solid - Only outside Japan, where Metal Gear: Ghost Babel (released for the Game Boy Color in 2000) was simply titled Metal Gear Solid in the west. Most fans simply stick with the Japanese title though.
  • Metal Slug - the original 1994 side-scrolling action shooter for the Neo Geo (which was ported to various platforms) or the 2006 3D third-person shooter released exclusively for the PlayStation 2.
  • Mortal Kombat - The 1992 original and the 2011 reboot. Official sources (such as Netherrealm Studios's Twitter account) tend to call the latter "Mortal Kombat 9" in social media, as they take into account the crossover Mortal Kombat vs. DC Universe as the eighth game in the series.
  • Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit (2010) is a sequel to Need For Speed: Hot Pursuit II (2002), itself a sequel to Need For Speed III: Hot Pursuit (1998). Confused?
    • Criterion Games seems to have a penchant for doing this with regard to their NFS entries. The NFS game for 2012 is called "Most Wanted", which is the same as the 2005 installment.
    • The 2015 Need for Speed reboot is actually the 21st game in the series since the 1994 3DO game (although this is more like a Subverted Trope since there has never been a game simply called "Need for Speed" in the series history, the original game being titled Road & Track Presents: The Need for Speed or simply The Need for Speed; the only other thing in the franchise simply named "Need for Speed" to date has been the the 2014 movie).
  • Neverwinter Nights - This 2002 PC game recycled the title of a 1991 MMORPG on the Gold Box engine.
  • Ninja Gaiden - The arcade and NES versions, both released in 1988, were completely different games, the former being a side-scrolling beat-'em-up and the latter an action-platformer similar to the Castlevania series. There were also licensed conversions for the Sega consoles: the 1991 Game Gear version and the 1992 Master System were completely different games, but both patterned after the NES version, while the canceled 1992 Mega Drive version was a beat-'em-up similar to the arcade game. Eventually Team Ninja rebooted the series on the original Xbox in 2004 with yet another game simply titled Ninja Gaiden, this time as a 3D action game.
  • Prey: The 2006 game or the 2017 reboot.
  • Prince of Persia - The original was released on numerous computer and gaming platforms, starting with the Apple II in 1989. A reboot was released in 2008, debuting on Xbox 360, PS3 and PC.
  • Punch-Out!! - There were three games called Punch-Out!!: the 1984 arcade game, the 1987 NES game (which at least has the courtesy of being Mike Tyson's Punch-Out!! in the original port), and the 2009 Wii game. There were also two sequels titled Super Punch Out: the one for the arcades in 1985 and one for the Super NES in 1994.
  • Puyo Puyo and its overseas title Puyo Pop: the former could refer to a 1991 MSX 2 / Famicom game and a radically different 1992 Arcade Game, while the latter could refer to a 1999 Neo Geo Pocket Color game, 2002 Game Boy Advance game, or 2003 N-Gage game.
  • Rise of the Triad - Could refer to the 1994 one or the 2013 one.
  • Rocket Knight is the fourth game in the Rocket Knight Adventures series, which consists of Rocket Knight Adventures and Sparkster: Rocket Knight Adventures 2 for the Genesis, as well as an SNES game simply titled Sparkster.
  • Samurai Shodown - The series had a trilogy of 3D games during the late 90s. These were, Samurai Shodown 64 and Samurai Shodown 64: Warrior's Rage for the arcade, which both ran on the Hyper Neo-Geo 64 hardware, and Samurai Shodown: Warrior's Rage for the PlayStation. To avoid confusion, the last two are called Samurai Shodown 64 Part II and Samurai Shodown: Warrior's Rage.
    • In addition, there were two Samurai Shodown games for Neo Geo Pocket: Samurai Shodown! and Samurai Shodown! 2 (the exclamation marks are part of their titles).
  • Shadow Warrior is a 1997 video game and a 2013 video game.
  • Shinobi - The 1987 side-scrolling action platformer for the arcade, the 2002 3D action game for the PlayStation 2, and a 2011 side-scrolling sequel for 3DS (also known as Shinobi 3D). May also apply to The G.G. Shinobi for the Game Gear, which was simply titled Shinobi on the American cover art (but still kept the original title in the actual game).
    • Also applies to The Revenge of Shinobi, which was the title of the 1989 Sega Genesis sequel to the original Shinobi, and an unrelated Game Boy Advance game released in 2002 to cash-in on the above-mentioned PS2 version.
  • SimCity's first sequel was Simcity 2000 after the fashion of its time. The next followed logically with 3000, the next dropped the extraneous zeros, and the fifth entry is just Sim City.
  • Sonic the Hedgehog - There's the original 16-bit game on the Genesis in 1991 (along with a really different 8-bit conversion for the Game Gear and Master System), and the Milestone Celebration game for Xbox 360 and PS3 in 2006. The 2006 game was commonly referred to as Sonic NextGen, although that has since fallen out of use for Sonic the Hedgehog (2006), mainly due to the fact it's no longer on a 'next' generation system.
  • Star Wars: Battlefront - The first video game, developed by Pandemic Studios and published by LucasArts; and the 2015 Continuity Reboot Star Wars Battlefront (no colon punctuation mark), developed by DICE and published by EA. The 2004 game was followed by Star Wars: Battlefront II in 2005, as the 2015 game was followed by Star Wars Battlefront II (again, no colon punctuation mark) in 2017.
  • Strider could refer to: the 1989 arcade game by Capcom, the NES version released during the same year based on the Moto Kikaku manga, or the 2014 reboot by Double Helix.
    • Strider II, the 1990 Tiertex-developed home computer sequel to Strider, is not to be confused with the similarly titled Strider 2 (aka Strider Hiryu 2), the 1999 Capcom-developed arcade sequel. The former was remade for Sega Genesis and Game Gear under the U.S. title of Journey From Darkness: Strider Returns.
  • Super Dodge Ball - The 1987 arcade original, the 1988 NES version (which is technically a port, but very different from the original), and the rare 1996 Neo-Geo sequel.
  • Superman for Atari 2600, Superman: The Game for Commodore 64, Superman for NES, Superman for arcade, Superman for Sega Genesis, Superman for Game Boy, and Superman for Nintendo 64 are all different games, which is likely why the latter is almost universally called Superman 64. For good measure, there are also three different games called Superman: The Man of Steel.
  • Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles has the NES game and the arcade game, both based on the first animated series and released roughly at the same time in 1989 (as such, the NES port of the arcade game was rebranded Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles II) and the 2003 multiplatform game by Konami based on the second animated series. The 2007 multiplatform game by Ubisoft based on the CGI film is simply titled TMNT, much like the movie itself.
    • And then two games with the title of just "Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles" released in 2013 (based on the Nickelodeon CGI series) and 2014 (based on the film reboot) - both by the same developer and publisher!
    • Three distinct games were released with the title "Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Tournament Fighters" at the same time, for three different consoles. The character lineups for each one other than the Turtles themselves were vastly different, the sprites, moves and stories were completely original for each one, too. In Japan, only the Genesis version was called Tournament Fighters, with the SNES version being subtitled "Mutant Warriors" (the NES version never released there).
      • The 1987 animated series are themselves an example in America, but not in Europe, where the 1987 series was called Teenage Mutant HERO Turtles for censorship reasons.
      • The 2003 and 2012 cartoons are both called Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles everywhere.
  • Test Drive - The seventh installment.
  • Thief - The fourth game (originally known as Thi4f) is technically the first one to be called just Thief. The original 1998 PC game was titled Thief: The Dark Project.
  • Tomb Raider - The original game in 1996 and the ninth game in 2013 which is a Continuity Reboot.
  • Tooth Invaders is a 1981 game for the Commodore 64 and VIC-20, and a 2013 Mobile Phone Game game by Luminov.
  • Turok - A bordline example, since the 2008 multiplatform reboot is the first game in the series to be simply titled Turok. The 1997 original had a subtitle (Turok: Dinosaur Hunter), but it was often just called Turok, which is of course the accepted series name.
  • Twisted Metal - The 1995 PlayStation original and the 2012 PS3 sequel to Twisted Metal Black.
  • Unreal Tournament (1999), and Unreal Tournament 4, titled Unreal Tournament.
  • Wolfenstein - The 2009 game doesn't have the "3D" in its title (not to mention the "Castle" from Silas Warner's 1981 Apple II game), but still....
  • Xbox - The "Xbox 1" used to be a common nickname for the original Xbox after the release of the Xbox 360 until the unveiling of the actual Xbox One.
  • You Don't Know Jack - The original was released in 1995. It had its share of sequels and expansion packs, then it laid low for about eight years until a new one was released in 2011 with the same name as the original. Most fans just append "2011" to the name.

    Western Animation 

    Cross Media 

  • Microsoft Windows apparently will drop the version title after Windows 10, to be known simply as Windows.

Alternative Title(s): Identically Named Sequel, Same Name Sequel