Basically when a series is rolling along, and doing... decent, if a bit obscure. Then one installment is released, and that installment takes over the series. Occasionally, a fan might go back and look at the obscure earlier entries, but within the general fanbase, this entry is the series from the moment of its release.
Often caused by a Surprisingly Improved Sequel, and related to Adaptation Displacement, More Popular Spin-off, and Older Than They Think. The aforementioned hardcores sometimes declare that It's Popular, Now It Sucks. Usually happens with video games, but can apply to series in other media.
This does not count series which simply avert First Installment Wins by having a non-iconic first installment that was never displaced from popular consciousness.
Exceptionally likely in video games when an old series, well-loved by those who remember it but well vanished from the public consciousness, gets a new installment. See Metal Gear Solid and Street Fighter II.
Obligatory Tropes Are Not Bad note: please don't call people stupid for finding out late and starting with a sequel in the middle of the series, therefore not knowing the previous ones, especially if there are no numbers in the title. If they refuse to acknowledge what came before, then you have a case of Fan Dumb. Starting with a sequel might lead to Early Installment Weirdness.
Contrast It's Popular, Now It Sucks. The exact opposite of this trope is First Installment Wins.
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Media in General
Any franchise released Sequel First in some part of the world.
To the point that in America at the least, the series was localized with Chapter Three first, half of four next, and the rest ignored. This leads to a lot of Marth Debuted in Smash Bros. in some discussion forums.
The video game adaptations have it even worse: first a Dreamcast fighting game based on 3, then a cel-shaded PS2 3D action game based on 5, and a beat 'em up based on 1.
Also notable on Jump Super Stars: The first game had Jôtarô and Dio (The Hero and Big Bad of chapter 3) as playable and nobody else. The sequel promised including all the chapters, and they delivered... by making the other mains Assist Characters, but Dio and Jôtarô still as the only playables.
While Dio is also the Big Bad of Chapter One, it is his Chapter Three incarnation that is most... iconic. In fact, every one of his panels and almost all of his moves come from Part 3.
In Detective Conan, what many don't know is that Kaito Kid originally appeared in a short-lived manga, Magic Kaito, written by Aoyama. His appearance was just a mere Crossover. He was so popular, that he eventually became a main character and reccuring nemesis of Conan.
Dragon Ball Z: The original series had several false starts in the U.S. - Harmony Gold took a crack at it with a drastically altered dub in the late '80s, though this was quickly cancelled. Later, U.S. licensee FUNimation actually bought the rights to the entire animated canon at once with plans of selling the entire thing to syndication, starting with the first series. It flopped so hard, they stopped production after only 13 episodes and skipped ahead to the more action-oriented sequel series. The rest, as they say, is history.
This isn't exclusive to the USA. Z is more popular everywhere, no matter what some say. Even in Japan, where most memes and Shout Outs come from Z.
Sailor Moon: Was actually a spinoff of an earlier manga titled Codename: Sailor V, which starred Minako during her days as Sailor V. The creator was asked to expand it into a team format which led to Sailor Moon. Codename: Sailor V has only been released in a handful of countries outside of Japan, and never in parts of North America that are not Quebec.
Codename: Sailor V got an official English released in September 2011 alongside a new translation of Sailor Moon; though it is doubtful it will become more popular, at least people will know it exists.
Tekkaman Blade (aka Teknoman): Many people are not aware that it was a sequel of an earlier Tatsunoko anime, Tekkaman. It doesn't help that Tekkaman Blade is barely a sequel, much less a remake.
The presence of both in Tatsunoko Vs Capcom should help remedy this. Blade is still more popular, but the original now has SPACE LANCE for people to remember him for...
Only in the west, and only in some communities. Higurashi is definitely bigger than Umineko in Japan.
Considering that Higurashi at least had it's first season dubbed and released here in North America, whereas Umineko bombed so hard that nobody would dare touch it, it is safe to say that no, Umineko is NOT more popular in the west. It certainly isn't, financially.
Although created by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby, X-Men didn't take off as a franchise until its relaunch by Len Wein and Dave Cockrum with the addition of of new and highly popular characters like Storm, Nightcrawler, and especiallyWolverine. Today most people remember that particular team when asked to describe the X-Men.
The belgian comic Johan and Peewit is not very famous around the world. However everybody knows its spinn-off the Smurfs.
When most people think of Rambo, they picture the character shirtless in the jungle, slaying hundreds of mooks with machineguns and explosive arrows. In fact, in Rambo's first film, First Blood, he's fighting American lawmen and only kills one in self-defense with a rock (and the man's death wasn't even intentional, or even really directly caused by Rambo). And it's also a relatively anti-war movie, though not nearly so much as the original book, focusing on the shameful reception of Vietnam veterans upon their return home. The film ends with Rambo crying his heart out over the injustice of war and those who wage it. The sequels are pure war porn.
Partially because of its title and partially because it came out literally months after the first, only die hard Pink Panther fans realize that the first sequel was not Return of the Pink Panther, but the less well-known A Shot in the Dark. Ironically, it's Shot that brought in many of the elements (Clouseau's karate "prowess", the increasing tomfoolery of his accent) and characters (Dreyfus and Cato) that were key to the later films; it's also commonly regarded as the best film of the series.
Most people also think of the series as centering around the humorous slapstick misadventures of Inspector Clouseau, which started with A Shot in the Dark. The original Pink Panther film actually had the Phantom as the main character with Clouseau as an antagonist. It's just that it was so hard not to relate to him...
The original Mad Max film (which was only given limited release in America) is far more obscure than its two sequels Mad Max 2 (renamed The Road Warrior in America) and Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome. Notably, while the sequels became highly influential visions of an After the End world in their depictions of a post-apocalyptic wasteland, the original film is set in a pre-apocalyptic civilisation that is on the verge of falling apart.
Many people have no idea that Robert Rodriguez's film Desperado is actually the second film of a trilogy, the first being El Mariachi, which was made on a shoestring budget and never received a wide release.
In the Evil Dead series, most people remember the ass-kicking character of Ash, toting a shotgun and sporting a chainsaw for a hand. The first film of the series, however, is a more straight horror film with an ensemble cast. Ash is just a regular college kid who happens to make it to the end. Producers were even reluctant to call the second film Evil Dead II out of the belief that few people had even heard of the first film.
This is what The Dark Knight has done to Batman Begins. And in a bit of irony, part 3 takes most of its plot points from the overshadowed one instead of the immediate predecessor.
James Branch Cabell wrote 20-odd books set in his "Poictesme" universe. They were little-read until the 7th one, Jurgen, appeared in 1919: that one inspired the New York Society for the Suppression of Vice to attempt to prosecute Cabell for obscenity, naturally giving the book great publicity. Afterwards Cabell went right back to obscurity. Jurgen is still by far the best known book in the series, although, in the author's own opinion and that of some fans, it's not the best.
Dan Brown's runaway success The Da Vinci Code was a sequel to the much less known Angels and Demons. This was retroactively countered by publishers and filmmakers, who hoped to take advantage of lingering Dan Brown fever by snapping up Angels and Demons and marketing it aggressively. Most people probably think Angels and Demons is the sequel; certainly this is the case for the movie.
Although not a Real Life example, in Dune, Duke Leto, who was a charismatic and powerful leader that purchased one of the most important planets in the political system and created the second-best army in the universe, was completely overshadowed by his son, Paul.
It's gotten to the stage now where, as a result of the currently upcoming The Hobbit films, many people are under the impression that it was a prequel written afterThe Lord of the Rings.
H. G. Wells' The Crystal Egg, a short story about an alien artifact sent to Earth to spy on it in preparation for a coming invasion isn't remembered very well by most, especially compared to the story of said invasion.
Little House in the Big Woods was Laura Ingalls Wilder's first book, but it is the second in the series, Little House on the Prairie, that is better known, to the extent that it is the name by which the whole series is now known.
Live Action TV
In-universe example: In an episode of 3rd Rock from the Sun, it's revealed that the aliens favorite film is Arthur 2: On The Rocks. One day, Harry discovers the original Arthur:
Harry: There's a prequel! Sally: Well, who knew? This is going to answer so many questions about Arthur 2. Harry: Yeah, like the "2".
Deadmau5's debut album wasn't "Random Album Title". His first two albums aren't even mentioned on the official website, despite having one of his more popular songs, 1981.
Felix Mendelssohn's first violin concerto is relatively obscure. His second is one of the most recognizable pieces from the early Romantic period. Most people think he only wrote one.
Did you know that that famous piece Liebestraum by Franz Liszt is actually Liebestraum No. 3? Now you do.
Similarly, Fryderyk Chopin's first piano sonata, in C minor, is often overlooked and rarely performed. The second, in B-flat minor, is much more famous, as it contains a well-known Funeral March as the third movement. The third, in B minor, is also better-known and much better-received than the first.
Sergei Rachmaninoff is perhaps best known for the virtuoso piano writing and lush romantic melodies of his second (C minor) and third (D minor) piano concertos, the latter of which was featured in The Shining. The first concerto, in F-sharp minor, is rarely heard, as is the fourth, in G major.
Grammy awards for Best New Artist are often given to new stars whether or not they have released any albums prior to their break-out success.
Paula Cole received a Best New Artist Grammy for her second album.
Kenny Chesney won a Best New Male Vocalist award shortly before the release of his fourth album.
Shelby Lynne won this award in 2001, and in her very irritated acceptance speech reminded everyone that she had been recording and releasing albums for over 10 years.
Welcome Interstate Managers was the third album by Fountains of Wayne, released seven years after their first, self-titled, album. But the breakaway hit "Stacy's Mom" (the first - and usually, only - Fountains of Wayne song the general public is widely familiar with) from Managers led to Fountains of Wayne getting nominations for Best New Artist.
Amy Winehouse. Won Best New Artist although she already had a best-selling album in Britain beforehand. Back to Black is her second album.
Bon Iver won the 2012 Grammy for Best New Artist, despite their first album being released in 2007. Skrillex also already had several EPs before being nominated.
Similarly, Suzy Bogguss had been recording since 1981, but won the Country Music Association's Horizon award in 1992. The fact that said award is now called the New Artist Award should clue you in as to how her win fits this trope.
Gary Allan won the same award in 2003, even though he had been recording since 1996.
Bob Dylan's first album was not The Freewheelin' Bob Dylan but a self-titled album containing only two original songs.
Anything an artist records before they score a major studio deal is usually ignored. For example:
Only hardcore Eminem fans even know of his first album, which was notThe Slim Shady LP. Only 250 copies of Infinite were sold.
Good News For People Who Love Bad News was the fourth Modest Mouse album and their second album on a major label. Their first being The Moon & Antartica in 2000.
Yes, Nirvana made an album before Nevermind. "About A Girl" is most likely the only song non-fans would know from Bleach, due to the Unplugged In New York version getting radio airplay. The studio version of the song is the only Bleach track on the self-titled Greatest Hits Album too. Kurt even Lampshades this in the Unplugged album: before playing "About a Girl," he quips "This song is off our first album, which means no one has ever heard it before."
Switchfoot's three albums prior to The Beautiful Letdown, featuring "Meant to Live" and "Dare You to Move", are largely unknown outside the Christian Rock fandom.
Actually, "Dare You to Move" was from their third album.
Good Charlotte made a self-titled album with a different drummer before they achieved worldwide success with The Young and The Hopeless. At concerts they'll sometimes say they were going to play a song "off our first album", and everyone would cheer thinking it was from The Young and the Hopeless... Then they'd play "Festival Song" and half the audience would get really quiet... and the other half would scream even louder!
In the UK, this is in place even more so than America - the self-titled album was only released after The Young and The Hopeless, and the music videos have never seen any airplay in the country.
Wiz Khalifa's Rolling Papers is his third album, but his first on a major label, and his first with a major hit in "Black and Yellow".
Drake released his first mixtape, Room for Improvement, in 2006 but didn't get a record deal until 2009. Only hard core fans really know about that and the other mixtape he made. A weird version with this, because his first hit single, "Best I Ever Had", was actually released on a mixtape made before he had a record deal.
Tears For Fears's second album, Songs From the Big Chair was far more popular than their first and contains their best-known songs, including "Everybody Wants to Rule the World" and "Shout".
"Mad World" and "Pale Shelter" are from their first album.
"Mad World" was not popular because of Tears for Fears, but rather for its cover by Michael Andrews and Gary Jules. However, in Germany, it was common dance floor filler.
Despite the title track being one of their best known singles, The Who's My Generation album was out of print in the UK for decades, and prior to 2005 only an altered US release was available on CD.
Six years before his breakout album Bat Out Of Hell, Meat Loaf recorded a duets album with Stoney Murphy. Even the record's producers forgot about it in the intervening six years, reissuing it with Edwin Starr's vocals in place of Meat Loaf's. After Meat Loaf became a household name, the album was reissued again, with his lyrics restored, but Stoney's removed.
Japan's first two albums 'Adolescent Sex' and 'Obscure Alternatives'. David Sylvian has even gone on record saying they should never have released their first album. This isn't surprising because the album is a So Bad, It's Good attempt at jazz influenced glam rock. They did however perform tracks from 'Obscure Alternatives' up until they broke up, but it divides fans due to Sylvian's completely different vocal style and the occasionally banal lyrics. The compilation 'Assemblage', which features a couple of tracks from their first album is much better remembered, and some people believed it was their first album until the remasters came out, which contains an image on the spine which can only be completed by buying all the albums in the set.
Many people are unaware that Bob Marley And The Wailers released many singles and four albums in Jamaica before signing with Island in 1973. This happened 11 years after Bob released his first single.
Many people think that New Gold Dream was Simple Minds' first album, despite the fact it was their sixth (or fifth if you count Sons And Fascination and Sister Feelings Call as a double album).
Hardly anybody knows Supertramp's first two albums, which preceded a revamp in line-up (only the two bandleaders stayed) and sound.
David Bowie had recorded 2 entire albums and released one before Space Oddity (titled Man of Words, Man of Music until a 1972 reissue) made him famous and codified his style. His 2nd album in recording order, Love You Till Tuesday, was a casualty of Deram Records' financial problems, and received no authorized release until recently (although the lead single was released, complete with an ad for the thought-to-be-upcoming album on the sleeve).
Journey released 3 albums, with 2 different frontmen, in a weird experimental style that drifted between jazz and techno, before Steve Perry and an arena rock sound made them superstars.
Queen's first (self-titled) album is largely forgotten or unknown by all but the most hardcore Queen fans. Their popularity began to pick up with Queen II, spiked with Sheer Heart Attack and probably peaked with A Night At The Opera, but Queen has (almost) never had a single song featured on any collection albums. This is a shame, because it's a strong debut.
In fairness, the band only included Top 20 hits on Greatest Hits, thus several later period singles don't appear on it either. The band remained proud of "Keep Yourself Alive" and performed it constantly later on, however, so this is simply a case of too many hits.
Possibly because Queen II was where the "classic" sound came together. One can argue the merits of their debut, but it had a noticeably different sound to their later work, with a more pronounced early-70s Zeppelin-influenced hard rock feel and some religious themes.
Pink Floyd's The Dark Side of the Moon was either their sixth or eighth album, depending on whether or not you include two albums the band made as soundtracks for obscure French hippie films. Either way, you'd be surprised by how many casual/new fans earnestly believe the band's debut album was Dark Side.
The band did have two top 20 hits in the 1960s, but only in Britain. Most Americans aren't familiar with it.
Elton John made an album before his self-titled one. But almost no one has even heard of it, except for Americans who think it's his tenth album (it was released there six years after it was released in Britain).
Wicked Lester, founded by Gene Simmons and Paul Stanley. Nobody remembers it. KISS, however, is quite well known.
No one remembers a Fleetwood Mac without Stevie Nicks, even though she didn't join the band until 1975, a full eight years after the band was formed. Not even Fleetwood Mac.
Mobb Deep's first album, Juvenile Hell, is mostly forgotten. Its follow up, The Infamous is what really made the duo stars of the New York Hardcore Hip Hop scene.
Genesis' first album, 1969's From Genesis To Revelation, was recorded by a lineup which featured Anthony Phillips on guitar and John Silver on drums. It was marred by Johnathan King's string-laden overproduction and Decca Records' Executive Meddling. The group do not own the rights to the album and appear to have disowned it. The more Progressive Rock -based Trespass, from 1970, featured more of the band's trademark sound and style, but was, like FGTR, a commercial failure. The first major Genesis success was 1971's Nursery Cryme, featuring the cult hit, "The Musical Box". By then, the classic line-up of Peter Gabriel, Mike Rutherford, Tony Banks, and new members Steve Hackett and Phil Collins was established, and the group's sound better defined and produced.
Genesis have indeed disownedFGTR, and stopped performing numbers from it very early on. The majority of the fans agree with this and discount FGTR from the canon discography or treat it like an outtake or bootleg. Lineup and style aside, Trespass still has a firm place in the fandom's hearts, however, and numbers from it have made regular appearances at gigs, especially "The Knife".
Shania Twain released an unsuccessful self-titled debut album in 1993 featuring a more traditional country-pop sound and style, before making it big with the Robert John "Mutt" Lange-produced, more rock-flavored hit style the introduced on its followup, The Woman In Me.
Carole King's Tapestry was a huge hit in part because of the perception that after a successful songwriting career she was finally stepping out to make a statement as a performer. But she'd already released a smattering of singles in the 60s, including one ("It Might as Well Rain Until September") that became a fairly big hit in both the US and the UK. Then in 1968 she released an album with her band The City (Now That Everything's Been Said) that was basically a Carole King solo album, since she wrote all the songs and sang lead on all but one. Then a year before Tapestry she released her first official solo album, Writer.
Jimmy Buffett's 1973 album A White Sport Coat and a Pink Crustacean marked the debut of the style that would make him famous, but it was actually his second released album and third recorded album (after his folk-pop debut album flopped his former label refused to release the similar-sounding second album, claiming they lost the master tape. After his later success they miraculously found the tape and released it).
Warren Zevon's debut album was not his self-titled 1975 set, but 1969's ultra-obscure Wanted Dead or Alive. And before then he recorded a couple singles as a member of the duo Lyme & Cybelle.
Nickelback's debut album was released in the late 90s, and it was notSilver Side Up, the album that got them popular even in their own homeland of Canada. Even though the group previously had rock radio hits in "Leader of Men" and "Worthy To Say" (the former went top 10 on the Mainstream Rock charts), most people don't appear to remember anything before Silver Side Up's "How You Remind Me".
Jean Michel Jarre released a couple of albums before his international breakthrough Oxygène (one intended as library music and the other a film soundtrack), though both remained obscure and the former is still out of print.
Michael Jackson's solo debut isn't Off The Wall - his fifth album (but like the rap examples above, the first after a label change).
While everyone knows that Jackson was a member of the Jackson 5, one of Motown's most successful groups, few people know that he actually had solo hits "Don't Stop Till You Get Enough," let alone singles. "Got To Be There," "Rockin' Robin," and "Ben" were all top 10 hits, with the lattermost song becoming his first number-one.
His little sister also falls into this. Most people tend to think Janet's first album was Control. It is actually her third. In all fairness, however, Janet stated herself that she sees Control as the official start of her music career.
Iron Maiden's first two albums have their fans, and the first has the self-titled song that closes all concerts. But the albums are easily overshadowed by The Number Of The Beast, which introduced charismatic front-man Bruce Dickinson.
Remember those 2 albums MC Hammer made in the '80s? No, you don't, because you'd never heard of him back then, because it was his third album, "Please Hammer, Don't Hurt 'Em" that he finally had his first hit with "U Can't Touch This".
Red Hot Chili Peppers started their breakout with their fourth album, Mother's Milk... and after a label change became superstars with the fifth, Blood Sugar Sex Magik.
Luckily, their third album The Uplift Mofo Party Plan will always be remembered because it's the only one they made with guitarist Hillel Slovak, whose death a year after its release affected the band so much that they constantly reference it in their music.
Though Split Enz had a few hits with their third and fourth albums Dizrythmia and Frenzy, it wasn't until their fifth album True Colours that their success really took off.
No Doubt was endlessly amused when they were nominated for the Best New Artist Grammy for the wildly popular Tragic Kingdom album. It was actually their third album, and they had been performing for nearly a decade. David Letterman even referred to Tragic Kingdom as their first album when No Doubt made their first appearance on his show.
Finger Eleven is a very strange Canadian example. Most people first heard of them during the release of their self-titled album (which spawned a couple of big hits), which was released in 2003. However, the band (minus one member who left in the mid-90's) previously played as a group called Rainbow Butt Monkeys, which had already produced a debut album before they changed their name to Finger Eleven. Furthermore, their self-titled disc was their third studio release - the band had already released two albums in 1997 and 2000.
Not only that, but their most famous song never came until their fourth album, "Them vs. You vs. Me". That song? A little ditty called "Paralyzer."
Kardinal Offishall signed to Akon's Konvict Muzik Records in 2007, and promptly released his (to date) best-selling single (and his only American hit) "Dangerous" on his first album with the label, Not 4 Sale. Akon was the guest artist on the song, was the main reason it became a hit in America, where the song is still more associated with him than with Offishall. However, many people who bought the album and enjoyed it in the U.S. apparently didn't realize that Offishall had been a household rap name in Canada for a good 9 years beforehand. Not 4 Sale was Kardinal's fourth studio album, and he had already received critical acclaim and Canadian awards for several chart-topping hits.
Many people haven't heard any of The Human League's material prior to their third album Dare, which included the breakout single "Don't You Want Me?".
Deep Purple's first three albums, while fairly popular in the United States (like their cover of "Hush"), are generally overshadowed by their fourth album Deep Purple in Rock, which set them on the road to pioneering Heavy Metal.
Many My Chemical Romance fans are unaware the band made music before Three Cheers For Sweet Revenge and are typically surprised upon discovering 'I Brought You My Bullets, You Brought Me Your Love''.
Abba's first album Ring Ring wasn't widely known until the band became big later in the 70s. Most people think that their Eurovision entry "Waterloo" was their first single, when it was on their second album.
KMFDM's debut, Opium, was initially only released as a limited run of 200 casettes, and due to the tapes being lost for a long time, didn't see a rerelease until 2003. Thus, to most fans, What Do You Know Deutschland was their first album.
You've Come A Long Way Baby was Fatboy Slim's mainstream debut. Before that, he had Better Living Through Chemistry.
The original lineup of The Moody Blues was an R&B-influenced British Invasion quintet with Denny Laine (later to join Wings) on vocals and guitar, and Clint Warwick on bass. They had a minor hit with a cover of Bessie Banks' Go Now", and an album called "The Magnificent Moodies" in 1965. Laine and Warwick were replaced by Justin Hayward and John Lodge, respectively, who created the progressive sound the Moodies are known for with their second album, 1967's ''Days Of Future Passed" (which featured "Nights In White Satin").
Franz Ferdinand's video for "Take Me Out" was the one that shot them to fame, no doubt due to the rather avant garde style used in the video. It was actually their second video, their first was "Darts of Pleasure", which was a more typical video.
Many Kelly Clarkson fans outside the US never saw her on American Idol and assume her incredibly popular album "Breakaway" was her first when it's really her second after "Thankful".
Def Leppard made two albums before its breakthrough Pyromania. Even the band itself tends to ignore them.
Practically any huge act past its prime has a tendency to ignore songs from its two albums previous to their latest tour unless some song from said albums was a huge hit. These acts prefer to only play their classic-era songs and songs from the new album they are promoting at the time.
Nor does Paul McCartney play stuff from his catalog of songs written between 1984 and 1994.
The Who don't play in concert songs from the Kenny Jones era that much either.
Edguy's first album was not actually Kingdom of Madness, but The Savage Poetry, released two years before Kingdom. To further confuse fans, they remade The Savage Poetry in 2000 (removing the The from the title in the process). However, the first Savage Poetry was self-published, while Kingdom was their first album with a record label.
Eurythmics' first album In The Garden wasn't much of a success at the time and is still generally overlooked today. Their career really took off with the Surprisingly Improved Sequel, Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This).
Alice Cooper's first big album was Love It to Death. However, that was their third album and the last of a three record deal. The previous two albums, Pretties for You and Easy Action, tanked commercially and critically and it wasn't until Love It to Death that the band clued in on its signature sound. No song from the first two records has been played since the tour of the third and most people forget they exist.
Bungie's Marathon introduced a lot of things to the First Person Shooter genre and the video game industry as a whole, but everybody just remembers Halo. This might be considered a case of Spiritual Successor Displacement.
Summer Carnival shoot 'em ups has a really weird case of this. First of all, Recca might be mistakenly considered a sequel displacement because there was a game that was released year earlier, Spriggan, which kept the same Summer Carnival brand name. Moreover, the latter games from this series, Alzadick and Nexzr, may also be mistakenly considered follow-ups, but in reality... Not only Recca and the remaining SC games were released on different platforms and developed by different teams, they have absolutely nothing shared in general, save for the genre, the setting and belonging to the same somewhat forgotten gaming event, which is arguably the real example of this trope.
Also, have you ever heard about Alzadick having its' own sequel on PlayStation 2?
The original Street Fighter, released in 1987, introduced many of the same concepts later used by its sequel Street Fighter II, namely a six-button configuration and command-based special moves, but the game was merely a cult hit due to its stiff controls and lack of any playable character other than Ryu and Ken. The six-button configuration was actually an afterthought, created as a cheaper alternative for arcade owners who couldn't afford the deluxe cabinet that used two large mechatronic punching pads for each player that determined the strength of the player's attacks based on how hard they were pushed. Street Fighter II refined all the play mechanics from the original game, keeping the six-button configuration, while adding multiple player characters, essentially giving birth to the fighting game boom of The Nineties.
Keep in mind, too, that things like "stiff controls" and "lack of playable characters" weren't a ginormous deal in 1987. Back then, arcade games were simple affairs, and the very concept of one-on-one was little more than a novelty. Capcom at the time was a young company trying out lots of ideas to see what would stick. If Ghouls 'n Ghosts had sparked a global video game sea change and made intense platformers the white-hot genre of the '90s...well, cool.
Everyone knew about the player's special moves in Street Fighter II from the get go because the commands were printed on the instruction card. Because of this, people often forget that Ryu and Ken's three special attacks in the original were literally secret techniques that the player needed to discover for themselves. The (subsequently unchanged) control sequence was devised so it could be hit on by accident, provoking players to spend lots of time (and credits) trying to find out how the hell they'd done it.
Interestingly enough, the exact same thing has happened to II. Ask any hardcore fan for their opinion of The World Warrior, and you'll most likely get a litany of gripes. Horribly unbalanced, tons of cheap tricks (including the infamous "tick throws"), tons of glitches, Guile rules the universe, way too easy to do ridiculous damage, redizzies, infinites, etc. Anyone who just started picking up Street Fighter II would find The World Warrior just about unrecognizable.
It may be the case with the Grand Theft Auto series when it leaped into 3D. With the release of III, to be precise, which discarded both I and II.
The Mario series is an unusual example. Most people are cognizant of Mario's adventures in the original Donkey Kong, but the first game where he was billed as a star, Mario Bros. (without the "Super"), was comparatively obscure, though a redone version ended up as "that minigame from Super Mario Bros 3." However, Mario Bros is likely more well known these days, especially since Nintendo put a remake of the game in multiple Game Boy AdvanceMario games and, unlike the minigame in Super Mario Bros. 3, referred to said remake using the original's name, with the games it is packaged with including the Super Mario Advance games and Mario & Luigi: Superstar Saga. Until then, the Mario series really didn't take off until Super Mario Bros.
Super Smash Bros Brawl seems to make an effort towards its recognition, by including a "Mario Bros." stage.
While many people are aware of Soulcalibur, even though it was the sequel that had greater prominence and sales, there are a handful that have even heard of Soul Edge/Soul Blade, an arcade/PlayStation game that preceded the first Soulcalibur.
The PlayStation version actually sold well at the time of release (garnering a platinum release), but became overlooked upon the release of Tekken 3.
Not only that, but the official name of the series is the Soul series, yet 99% of all video gamers know the series as the "Soulcalibur series".
And 99% of those people know it as the "Soul Calibur" series.
Who hasn't heard of Rayman: Raving Rabbids? Yet, not many people realize it was part of a platforming series called Rayman, the first installment of which was released in...1995! For the Atari Jaguar and Sony PlayStation! (also, the PS1 version was one of the best-selling PS1 games ever, especially in Europe).
Secret of Mana, aka Seiken Densetsu II from the World of Mana series. Even in Japan, the first game was released with the subtitle of Final Fantasy Gaiden and was presented as more of a Final Fantasy game than its own entity. In America, it was only released as Final Fantasy Adventure, leaving many Americans unaware that it was even a Mana game at all. In both cases, Secret of Mana greatly overshadowed it and came to define the series worldwide. A later remake of the first game even redid several key mechanics and the entire aesthetic to look more like Seiken Densetsu II and its sequel.
Shadow Hearts. Koudelka, the first game of the series that was released on the original PlayStation, tends to be described just as "The prequel of Shadow Hearts".
While the Fallout series of PC games is still critically acclaimed and has a loyal (if loud andcritical of everything) following, Fallout 3 is a far more mainstream success, and most modern fans were probably introduced to the series through it.
Time Splitters 2. Timesplitters 1 was not as well known and only saw a PS2 release.
Dune II. Yes folks, there was another Dune video game. And not even a bad one at that. Just of a completely different genre than Dune 2.
The Elder Scrolls II Daggerfall single-handedly invented and refined The Elder Scrolls' trademark roleplaying system, introduced the open sandbox game world, and defined the non-linearity characteristic to the series. Arena, by comparison, was quickly forgotten, only brought up ten years later, when it was released for free to promote Oblivion...
Each subsequent Elder Scrolls game does this to previous games in the series.
This is also prequel first. Symphonia is a sort of origin story to Tales of Phantasia, the first game in the series.
Herzog Zwei for Herzog. The fact that the original Herzog was only released in Japan for the MSX didn't help with its recognition. Most people who don't know German probably weren't even aware that it was a sequel.
Even EGM didn't realize it was a sequel — on a list of games they felt needed sequels, they referred to a hypothetical Herzog Zwei sequel as Herzog Zwei 2, rather than Herzog Drei.
Spinoff series Persona has this with Persona 3, which introduced Dating Sim elements, generally reworked the series, and became hugely popular. Persona 4 continues with this template by being extremely similar to Persona 3, and the popularity of the changes seems to ensure that any future Persona 5 release will do the same.
The first Megami Tensei game released in North America was the obscure Jack Bros., for the even more obscure Virtual Boy. In fact, the game is so rare, it's the only Virtual Boy game The Angry Video Game Nerd doesn't own, out of his whole North American library of VB games. Apparently it isn't worth Jack shit, either.
Most fans of the Touhou series are only marginally aware of the first five games before the jump to Windows. It doesn't help that the PC-98 is long dead.
Team Fortress 2 is a perfect example, given that the original game was a Quake mod subsequently tweaked by the creators of Half-Life (see Team Fortress Classic). It also came out many years after the original, it's a complete change of tone from the original (the original had a realistic artstyle and a serious tone), and the classes all look completely different than they did in the original.
Glider PRO displaced Glider 4.0 and the original Glider.
In a mix of this and First Installment Wins, many less-hardcore fans of the Gradius series don't seem to know that Gradius II exists, thinking that the series goes from Life Force (NES) to Gradius III (SNES), and magically becomes Gradius V somehow (Gradius III & IV being nonexistent)
Just to make things even more confusing, Salamander (Life Force) got a 1996 sequel in Japan, which, of course, never got an American release and has not been ported to any console.
Additionally Parodius Da! for the arcade is actually a sequel to the original Parodius for the MSX2.
The Ganbare Goemon series originally began with a Japan-only arcade game called Mr. Goemon, from which the original Famicom game Ganbare Goemon was loosely based on as well. Some gamers even assume that the first SNES game in the series, the one that came out in America as Legend of the Mystical Ninja, was actually the first game in the series period.
While the original Twinbee was released for the arcades in 1985 and had a few straight-to-Famicom sequels, the arcade sequel Detana!! Twinbee was actually the first one to feature the series' iconic character designs of Shuzilow Ha.
Thunder Force II is far more well-known than its predecessor. It doesn't help that the original Thunder Force lacked the Horizontal Scrolling Shooter action the series is best known for, was released in Japan only on some now-obscure computer platforms, and was never ported to any console system.
While the Call of DutyFPS series was fairly well-known (perhaps even very well-known) and acclaimed from the start, it didn't turn into the household name we know today until Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare.
It came to the point where developer Infinity Ward simpy titled their next sequel Modern Warfare 2 and considered it a new intellectual property. Activision added Call of Duty back into the title, however, for name recognition. An alarming number of people seem to think the series started with Call of Duty 4, despite it having "4" in the title.
Crystal Quest thoroughly displaced Crystal Raider, a shareware prototype so primitive that it didn't even have a Quit command. (You had to physically reboot the computer to escape it.)
Although the Final Fantasy series was already somewhat popular prior to 1997, Final Fantasy VII brought in an overwhelming wave of new fans, making a rather large amount of people think that it was the first title in the series despite the number "VII" in it. In fairness to Europeans, it was the first Final Fantasy to be released there.
The Goonies II was a relatively popular NES game, somewhat based on the movie. There was an earlier Goonies game for the Famicom, which wasn't even released outside Japan except for the Vs. System arcade cabinet, which in turn many people never really noticed.
Red Faction: Guerrilla has had this effect on the Red Faction series. Not many people know about the first two games.
The Silent Hill franchise now spans eight main games, but the second game is by far the most famous, with memes and parodies based on it frequently showing up in news coverage of later titles to which it has no connection. This even extends to the joke endings of Silent Hill 3, Shattered Memories, and Downpour, all of which feature a cameo appearance from the protagonist of Silent Hill 2 for no real reason.
EarthBound is a bit of a cult classic, but it's less well known that it's in fact the 2nd game in the Mother series. Justified though, in that it was the only one released in the US, the other two launching in Japan only.
The main reason people know of "EarthBound" but not "Mother" is because of Ness's appearance in the "Super Smash Bros." series.
Few people have heard of Earth2140, the first game in the the Earth 21XX RTS series. To be fair, it's not as unique as its successors, but it's still a fairly solid game.
This game also puts the Eurasian Dynasty in a much darker light, showing people being forcibly turned into cyborgs. 2150 doesn't have any infantry due to Germany's restrictions on video game violence, and 2160 just has them use regular soldiers as infantry with cyborgs forgotten.
Few people remember Kingdom Under Fire: A War Of Heroes for PC... despite it actually being more unique than its sequels. It was one of the first RTS titles to have RPG-style upgradeable hero units — years before Warcraft III — as well as making the odd choice to combine RTS and Diablo-style stages.
Very few Legacy of Kain fans played "Blood Omen 1" and "Blood Omen 2." In fact, many assumed "Soul Reaver" was the first game in the series and never even knew that the SR games were spin-offs of the original "Blood Omen."
World of WarCraft, and while not technically a sequel, many fans are unaware that three WarCraft RTS games and their expansions came before it. Some players were surprised to learn the WarCraft franchise is fact 18 years old, and World of Warcraft was released on the franchise's 10th birthday.
Need for Speed became excessively popular with the release of Underground in 2003, and spawned an even more popular sequel in 2004. Then another in 2005...and another in 2006...and 2007...and 2008...after 5 years, the series became stale however, and each game was significantly less well received, before finally shifting back to its roots with Hot Pursuit 2k10. Due to a split fanbase, EA knew there would be still some of the newer fans who yearned for the Most Wanted/Carbon style gameplay and customization, hence the NFS: World MMORG was released along side Hot Pursuit.
Quake was a hugely influential game (it almost single-handedly invented Tournament Play, for instance) but was later overshadowed by the multiplayer-oriented Quake III Arena. It wasn't until Quake IV was released years later that the series got back to its roots with a single-player campaign.
The Korean SRPG The War Of Genesis II not only displaced, but also outright replaced the first game, as it repeated most of the story, embedded into a greater narrative.
The old Minecraft Classic — the one where there's an unlimited number of blocks, simple shading, no monsters or items, and no day/night cycle — seems to suffer from it when compared to the regular Minecraft. The comments on this video show that some people aren't even aware of Classic:
Why do the blocks destroy so easily???
how do you break the blocks so fast and how do you do the unlimited block thing
The "unlimited blocks" (and easy block destruction) function in Minecraft Classic now appears in a mode of regular Minecraft called Creative Mode, which may further push Minecraft Classic into obscurity.
The Ultima series started with Akalabeth, a game which is remembered mainly because it established many tropes that were made far more famous by its sequels.
Conkers Bad Fur Day. How many people know much about the game that starred Conker that came out between it and Diddy Kong Racing? Very few people know about the E rated Conker's Pocket Tales which came out on the Game Boy Color a few years before Bad Fur Day, or that his more well known Nintendo 64 game was originally meant to be a light hearted Banjo-Kazooie like 3D platformer.
The Pokemon Mystery Dungeon fandom suffers from this, as some of the many people who started the series with the Explorer games have no idea that the Rescue Team games exist or just ignore them.
Tribes is an enormously popular team based first person shoot with jetpacks and guns that shoot exploding blue frisbees. The games that Tribes takes its plot and name from is the games from the Starsiege universe, best known as "that other Real RobotHumongous Mecha game that isn't Mech Warrior".
Jet Set Radio Future for the Xbox is more well-known than the first Jet Set Radio, which was on the Dreamcast. This is because of two reasons: 1) The first game was released when the DC was losing its popularity in America and Europe, and 2) Future and Sega GT 2002 were put together on one disc and packaged with Xboxes during the holiday season of 2002, so everyone who got an Xbox for Christmas that year had no choice but to play it. When the first JSR got the HD makeover in 2012 for all download services (except Nintendo ones), a lot of people who only played Future complained about how different this one was.
Ciem: The Human Centipede, is known by at least a small number of online viewers. It is, however, a spin-off/sequel to The Battle for Gerosha, whom nobody remembers.
And the version of Ciem online now is actually a complete reboot of the Gerosha universe. A much less-sensical version existed in 2005 before the 2007-2009 incarnation. Yet, who really remembers the 2005 version?
Or, for that matter, the canceled 2006 version?
MS Paint Adventures offers an internal example with Homestuck compared to its immediate predecessor Problem Sleuth. Homestuck is a megahit and the most popular webcomic today. Problem Sleuth had a popular run but nowhere near the insane popularity of Homestuck.
In universe example: in one episode of The Simpsons, Millhouse comments that the present situation is, "like Speed 2, but with a bus instead of a boat."
The First and Second Reichs aren't known as such, of course. The First Reich was better known as the Holy Roman Empire, which endured (in various forms) for a thousand years, and included such luminaries as Otton (the founder), Frederick Barbarossa, Charles V, Maria Theresa, and many others. The Second Reich is today called Imperial Germany, and was the first incarnation of the modern state of Germany. It lasted from 1871 to 1918 (four times as long as Nazi Germany). The latter half of Otto von Bismarck's career took place here, and Kaiser Wilhelm, the man often blamed for starting World War One, was the last Emperor.
More of a retcon than this trope, since it was the Nazis and associated groups that came up with those names for them after the fact. The first two are actually reasonably well known, though the Third Reich is still more so among people who aren't students of history.
The Apple II compared to its predecessor the Apple I, and the Apple Macintosh compared to its predecessor the Apple Lisa.
Try finding someone who knows that there were Apple handheld computers before the iPhone, let alone knows when Apple came out with their first handheld computer note 1993
For the unaware, the Apple I was literally just a circuitboard. You had to build the actual computer yourself, including the keyboard. This was actually not unreasonable at the time; many computers were sold as kits at the time. In fact, the Apple II is often credited with sparking the microcomputer revolution.
Okay, so people know there was a World War I, but what do they actually know about it? Incredibly little compared to WWII. At the time, it was simply called "The Great War", because it was the largest conflict the world had ever seen up to that point (over ten million people died in it, remember).
Depends on the country. In Australia, much focus is given to the events of the Gallipoli Campaign and the Somme in WWI. The Dawn Service at Gallipoli regularly exceeds 10,000 attendees, which doesn't sound like much but bear in mind this is people travelling to the other side of the world to commemorate lives lost in a war fought almost a whole century ago.
British knowledge of it fluctuates a fair bit, but most will know something about it. The Remembrance Day ceremonies and Poppy Appeals were, after all, originally created to remember the war in the 20s, and are seen as sacrosanct by many.
There is at least one reasonably popular American history book series that effectively skips WWI. Somewhat justified given the USA's somewhat tangential role in it.
The United States Constitution, which was literally meant to displace the previous constitution. Most people are dimly aware of the Articles of Confederation, which formed the basis of a very different United States of America, and almost nobody remembers that there were a number of chief executives before George Washington (though they were nowhere near as powerful or central to the government as the current President is.)
They weren't executives at all, actually, any more than the Speaker of the House is an executive. It was such an unimportant post that at least one appointee never bothered to show up for work. The office of President of Congress is justifiably forgotten.