So you have a comic or a novel that you just published and you reached the third sequel but now you hate everything about the second book. What do you do? Well a Story-Reset of course! This trope is used often to do a Soft Reset
of current events in order to do them over or change the outcome of the 'current' time line.
This trope allows you to go back a few pages or even a novel or two and rewrite the story after it has already been seen or published and either replace it with a brand new story or to change the original outcome while not being forced into doing a full Continuity Reboot
. Basically keeping the previous stories and merely changing/rewriting the most current.
Some Tabletop gamers also have soft-resets like this which erase only one or two stories of play and go back to a previous point allowing different actions to be taken or different paths to be accepted in story telling. Similar to using a video game's Soft Reset
or Save Scumming
but in book or story format. Sometimes it's even present in such media.
Sometimes can overlap with Continuity Reboot
in some ways, although a Continuity Reboot will often wipe out all
of the current story and goes back to square 1; a Story Reset only wipes it back so far to a particular point saying previous stories are still canon and can sometimes cause Ret Gone
when characters introduced after a certain point are no longer present.
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- DC Comics has done it once in the Parallax storyline, basically null and voiding 15 issues of the Green Lantern by performing some Stable Time Loop plot line.
- Milestone Comics did this as well when joining the DC Universe by erasing most of the final story.
- When Sherlock Holmes was first killed off, hundreds of early Fan Fiction stories appeared in newspapers and book stores as freebees re-writing the last book.
- Wishmaster has a form of this by allowing the protagonist to 'wish it never happened' thus erasing all events of the movie.
- Back to the Future trilogy has a form of this when the time lines are constantly altered, two of which erases a few characters from existence and does a story reset of sorts to the original 1985 time line.
- In Persona 2 we have Innocent Sin & Eternal Punishment with Innocent Sin taking place first with a Bad Ending then following the story with Eternal Punishment allowing you to restart the story with a different protagonist and get the Good Ending.
- Chrono Trigger has Chrono killed off and forces the party to go through a journey to resurrect the hero which in a sense resets the story from Chrono no longer existing to a new timeline.
- Trinton Chronicles has done this more then once in it's long running history; whole story arcs have been eradicated and replaced or the current story has been erased to a point and picked back up.