[[quoteright:250:[[Anime/{{Pokemon}} http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/pikachuEffect2_2969.jpg]]]]
[-[[caption-width-right:270:That's more like a ''Fourth''-Option Adaptation.]]-]

An interactive work is being adapted into another, non-interactive form -- a video game into a TV series, for example. The original required the audience to choose one option above the others, such as picking a member of your [[HaremGenre Harem]] in a DatingSim. As such, in the adaptation, there will be an active move by the writers not to have any choice evident, so that no portion of the audience is validated or invalidated in their choice. Sometimes comes out of an adaptation of a work with MultipleEndings.

This can also be done if it's an adaptation of a ''non''-interactive work, by refusing to pick any one of the LoadsAndLoadsOfCharacters to have more spotlight or importance than the others if the audience is divided on which is best and there's no main character.

Contrast CuttingOffTheBranches, which ''does'' choose one and leave the others in the dust, and MergingTheBranches, which combines options in a way not possible in the original rather than creating a completely new option. CipherScything [[note]]either removing or minimizing the role of the FeaturelessProtagonist[[/note]] and/or OriginalGeneration[[note]]creating new characters wholecloth[[/note]] might be used in conjunction.



''Franchise/{{Pokemon}}'' has a number of examples, as players have two or three options given to them when a new game comes out, and various adaptations have to account for all of them.
* The games give a choice of three {{Starter Mon}}s, and adaptations are usually loath to favor one over the others:
** The ''Anime/{{Pokemon}}'' TV series adaptation started with Ash having overslept and, as a result, all the starter Pokémon have been picked by other trainers already when he shows up. He ends up with a spare Pokémon the professor happened to have on hand, a Pikachu (an [[EnsembleDarkhorse outside fan favorite]] by that point), instead. The starters from all the games would eventually appear and join the cast under either Ash or one of his friends; though sometimes one would be more or less prominent than the others - for instance, in the ''XY'' seasons Greninja would become one of Ash's featured Pokémon and even received a unique SuperMode, while Chesnaught and Delphox faded into the background.
*** In the ''VideoGame/PokemonXAndY'' games, Professor Sycamore also offers the Kanto starters when the player first sets foot in Lumiose City. Instead of Ash, Clemont and Serena receiving them (which would obviously be rather redundant in Ash's case) the three Kanto starters are given to the characters Shauna, Trevor and Tierno. And a second Charmander is in the possession of Sycamore's former assistant Alain (ArcHero of the Mega Evolution specials), who, by the present day, has already evolved into a Charizard.
** The anime's third option was rolled back into the games in the RecursiveAdaptation ''Pokémon Yellow'', where the player started with a Pikachu but the rival, who normally selects one of the three starters that the player character didn't, ''also'' got a third option starter, an Eevee. And then back in the anime even that Eevee is subject to this: in ''Yellow'', the rival's Eevee could evolve into Flareon, Jolteon or Vaporeon based on how often you beat him in your early battles. In the anime, Gary gets an Eevee like his ''Yellow'' counterpart (though his starter is later revealed to have been Squirtle), but since he never battles Ash until much later his Eevee was revealed to have evolved into an Umbreon, which was introduced in the sequel.
** For another case of games taking a third option, ''VideoGame/PokemonGoldAndSilver'' and ''VideoGame/PokemonSunAndMoon'' feature battles against Red (''Red and Blue's'' player character) and Blue (''Red and Blue's'' Rival). Red's team features all four possible starters (which includes a Pikachu to represent ''Yellow Version''), with the remaining two Pokémon being forced encounters (one of the route-blocking Snorlax) or gifts (either the free Eevee from Celadon in the original ''Gold/Silver'' or the free Lapras from Silph Co. in the ''Gold/Silver'' remakes and ''Sun/Moon'') in ''Red and Blue''. Blue uses the same team he used in ''Red and Blue'' with one exception; in ''Red and Blue'' he'd have his starter in place of one other Pokémon of the same type, while later games make no such substitutions.
** ''Manga/PokemonAdventures'' generally has multiple protagonists, each of which receives one of the starters so all three are given ample "screentime".
** The [=CoroCoro=] manga adaptation of ''VideoGame/PokemonSunAndMoon'' has the protagonist partnered with a [[PreciousPuppies Rockruff]] instead of one of the starters.
* Outside of starter Pokémon, adaptations also have to account for the choice of male and female player characters starting with ''Pokémon Crystal''. ''Manga/PokemonAdventures'' generally takes both options and TheRival and makes them a PowerTrio of co-protagonists. Zig-zagged by the anime: the main character, Ash, was based on the ''Red and Blue'' PC where male was the only option available, and many of his traveling companions are either gym leaders from the games (such as Misty and Brock in the original series) or original characters (Tracey taking Brock's place for the Orange Islands, or May's little brother Max in Hoenn and the Battle Frontier); however, starting from the seasons adapting ''VideoGame/PokemonRubyAndSapphire'', the female PC would also usually[[note]]May, [[VideoGame/PokemonDiamondAndPearl Dawn]] and [[VideoGame/PokemonXAndY Serena]] got to travel with Ash, while [[VideoGame/PokemonBlackAndWhite Hilda]], [[VideoGame/PokemonBlack2AndWhite2 Rosa]] and [[VideoGame/PokemonSunAndMoon Moon]] were nowhere to be seen[[/note]] be selected to travel with Ash, leaving the male PC out. Only ''Pokémon Chronicles'' used both player options (from ''Gold and Silver'').
* Plots can also differ due to the games' use of OneGameForThePriceOfTwo; often resolved in canon by releasing a third version of the game combining elements of both of the first two.
** ''VideoGame/PokemonRubyAndSapphire'' involved opposing teams Team Magma and Team Aqua; only in ''Ruby'' Team Magma were the villains trying to summon Groudon and Team Aqua was heroic, while in ''Sapphire'' Aqua were the bad guys summoning Kyogre and Magma were the ones trying to stop them. ''Pokémon Emerald'' and most adaptations made it so both teams were evil and succeeded in summoning their monster, leading to Groudon and Kyogre fighting each other and the protagonists trying to stop both of them with the help of Rayquaza.
** In ''VideoGame/PokemonDiamondAndPearl'', did Cyrus try to use the ruler of Time, Dialga, to destroy and recreate the world? Or did he try to use the ruler of Space, Palkia, for that? Well, in ''Pokémon Platinum'' he used both and was then defeated by [[EldritchAbomination Giratina]]. [[note]]In ''Black and White'', which was released later, Cynthia mentions Dawn/Lucas battling Giratina, implying [[CuttingOffTheBranches Platinum is the canon Gen IV game]].[[/note]]
** In ''VideoGame/PokemonBlackAndWhite'', the first and last gyms each have multiple leaders, of which the player only fights one. In the anime, Ash fights all three leaders in the first gym and ''neither'' of the last gym leaders - instead the two leaders from the last gym, Iris and Drayden, face ''each other'' (Iris being a regular supporting character and proving herself against her mentor Drayden) and Ash gets his eighth badge from one of the new leaders from [[VideoGame/PokemonBlack2AndWhite2 the sequel]]. ''Manga/PokemonAdventures'' handled the first gym the same, but for the last gym it made Drayden the leader while Iris was a later opponent during the Pokémon League finals, foreshadowing how she has become League Champion in the sequel.
** Averted with [[Anime/PokemonTheMovieBlackAndWhite one of the movies]] for ''Black and White'', which much like the games comes in two similar-but-different versions.
** ''VideoGame/PokemonXAndY'' has no third version to reconcile whether Team Flare was going after Xerneas or Yveltal, so the anime instead has Team Flare only target Zygarde and not bother with the cover legendaries. It also serves to [[EarlyBirdCameo debut new forms]] for Zygarde ahead of ''VideoGame/PokemonSunAndMoon''.
** In the anime of ''Sun & Moon'', both Totem Gumshoos (Sun) and Totem Raticate (Moon) are featured in episodes, making neither game more featured than the other. Ash would face the former in Verdant Cavern supervised by Hala (when it should be the AdaptedOut Ilima who accompanies Ash) while Team Rocket would later get into a MeleeATrois, fighting fellow GoldfishPoopGang Team Skull (loosely adapting an event in the middle of the same trial) over who gets to fight Totem Raticate.
** Instead of Midday or Midnight Lycanroc, Ash's Rockruff would evolve into a ''third'' evolution, Dusk Forme Lycanroc, way ahead of its debut in the remake, ''VideoGame/PokemonUltraSunAndUltraMoon''.

* ''Film/TeenageMutantNinjaTurtles1990'' has Splinter and Casey Jones, rather than one of the turtles, defeating BigBad Shredder.
* The ''VideoGame/{{Fallout}}'' games allow players to be male or female, any race they choose, and a bunch of other customization features as rudimentary as nose size. How could boxart get all of this represented at once? It doesn't; instead opting for pictures of an undefined character in power armor.
* ''TabletopGame/WerewolfTheApocalypse - Heart of Gaia'', an abortive video-game translation of the pen and paper RPG, had the main character as a redeemed [[AlwaysChaoticEvil Black Spiral Dancer]], thus avoiding using any of the main tribes in the game.
* The ''VideoGame/DeusEx'' series is an extremely interesting case. The first game (set in 2052) features 3 different endings. The [[VideoGame/DeusExInvisibleWar sequel]] (set in 2072) states that all 3 endings essentially happened. The prequel, ''VideoGame/DeusExHumanRevolution'' (set in 2027), is an inversion, as it features 4 different endings, all of which could plausibly lead to the events of the original game. Human Revolution's [[VideoGame/DeusExMankindDivided sequel]] (set in 2029), officially states that none of the endings are canon, with the assumed state seeming like a small combination of various endings (Panchaea was destroyed and augmentation is publicly condemned, but Sarif is alive).
* In ''VideoGame/KnightsOfTheOldRepublic'', the player character's gender and appearance are customizable, and you have a choice between helping the Republic defeat Malak on the one hand, and overthrowing him as the Dark Lord of the Sith and then turning against the Republic. Although the character is canonically male and the Star Forge is canonically destroyed (a RoadCone example), the second game allows you to [[SchrodingersQuestion retroactively]] specify that character's gender and alignment via dialogue options, and the rest of the game then reflects the choice. The spin-off comic series also avoids establishing the character's appearance: in all appearances, [[spoiler:the Revanchist]] is wearing a bulky robe and face-obscuring hood, and is never referred to by name or gender-specific pronouns.
** Oddly, avoiding referring to [[spoiler: the Revanchist]] with a name was only made necessary ''because'' of the spin-off comic itself. [[spoiler: As the games refer to him, Revan's name before the amnesia appeared to have ''been'' Revan. The comics established that no, it wasn't, thus necessitating various tricks to avoid saying what the ''actual'' name was]].
** When the events of the second game are referenced elsewhere in the EU, the Exile is noted to be female, but both of the gender-exclusive companions (the Handmaiden for male and the Disciple for female) were in her crew.
* The ''VideoGame/StarOcean'' series always has mutually exclusive characters, particularly in the second game. The [[TheAnimeOfTheGame anime adaptation]] of ''[[VideoGame/StarOceanTheSecondStory The Second Story]]'', which covers the events of the first disc, cuts a few corners and has all the disc 1 characters join Claude and Rena. This caused a small-scale UrbanLegendOfZelda, where people started to believe that it's possible to recruit both Ashton and Opera in the same game as well as recruit Dias on Claude's route. Neither situation is possible in the game. The sequel, ''Blue Sphere'', and a blink-and-you'll-miss-it line in ''VideoGame/StarOceanTillTheEndOfTime'''s manual confirm that all ten optional party members were canonically recruited.
* ''VideoGame/TalesOfSymphonia'': None of its endings are possible for ''[[VideoGame/TalesOfSymphoniaDawnOfTheNewWorld Dawn of the New World]]'' (as it isn't possible on a single playthrough to obtain the title "Item Collector"- because you normally can only obtain one of the three ending items), rather, its manga adaptation's ending (where all three ending items are given to Lloyd) is canon.
** However, {{Road Cone}}s are still there for the pairing: [[ChildhoodFriendRomance Colette is canonically Lloyd's soulmate.]] Although a bonus scene in the game [[SchrodingersGun allows you to choose even that.]]
** There are other differences in the manga's ending, too, like the party taken to the final battle. In the game, because of the limit on the number of party members, you had to take either [[spoiler:Zelos or Kratos]]. In the manga, not only do both of them go along for the final trip to Derris-Kharlan, but [[spoiler:so does ''Yuan'']].
* It's amazing the EpilepticTrees that have come from trying to figure out which, if any, endings of the various ''VideoGame/{{Geneforge}}'' games are canonical. A popular one for the third game argues that the main character ''died at the very beginning'' and was replaced by someone else who acted out most of the game's events before getting killed off in turn.
** The fifth game manages to revive all those trees in theories on the protagonist's identity. All this is probably due to the fact that the canon endings are combinations of multiple endings with some obfuscation thrown in as well.
* The ''Film/ResidentEvil'' film series also employed this trope. Rather than focusing on any of the canon characters from the game series, the films are centered around a new character named [[ActionGirl Alice]]. Though she interacts with characters and situations from the games, it's clear that the movies are Alice's show, and the rest are just along for the ride. This allows the movies to take many liberties and diverge significantly from the game canon.
** In the first game, depending on your chosen character, you can escape with the helicopter pilot, Brad, and optionally the other player character and a partner dictated by the plot -- Barry for Jill, and Rebecca for Chris. Later games make it clear that all five characters survive the Mansion Incident, although Rebecca has never resurfaced outside of prequels and guest appearances in non-canon minigames.
* ''VideoGame/ClockTower'' has an ending where one friend (either [[SpellMyNameWithAnS Anne/Ann or Rolla/Laura]]) survives along with Jennifer (Ending S). Rather than pick between Anne and Rolla and have one appear in both the sequel and the various spinoff media, the developers decided to use the other endings where Jen survives but no one else does (Endings A, B and C). Ending C specifically is established as canon in the ending of the later game, when Dan's name (which Jennifer only learns in that ending) is mentioned and Jennifer shrinks back. Which is kind of strange, because you'd have to be using some wacky moon logic to get Ending C normally.
* At the end of ''VideoGame/MetalGearSolid'', Snake can try to save Meryl depending on a choice made during an ElectricTorture at the middle of the game - if the player chooses to resist, [[spoiler:Otacon stays behind in an attempted HeroicSacrifice to hold open a gate for Snake and Meryl to escape through (although he lives), and Snake tells his real name to Meryl]]; if the player submits, [[spoiler:Otacon comes up onto Rex to talk Snake down, having already opened the gate, and Snake tells his real name to Otacon]]. Both the novel and comic book adaptations went with an ending where [[spoiler:Snake escaped with both Meryl and Otacon at once, and told both of them his real name together]].
** ''VideoGame/MetalGearSolid2SonsOfLiberty'' seems to go with this as well: when infiltrating the tanker in the opening cutscene of the game, he has the stealth camo Otacon gave him in his ending. Coupled with Meryl not appearing at all in the game, this would suggest she died in the first game, up until Snake reveals late in the game that he also has the infinite-ammo bandanna he received in her ending. This one could possibly work as a fourth-wall-breaking joke, as well; the player most likely played through the game at least twice to get both endings and their special items, so it's only logical that Snake did so as well.
** And then ''VideoGame/MetalGearSolid4GunsOfThePatriots'' reveals that [[spoiler: Meryl living]] is canon, but with a major part of her story arc being [[spoiler:her disgust at Colonel Campbell [[LukeIAmYourFather being her biological father rather than her uncle]]]], something which was only revealed in the ending where [[spoiler:Meryl dies]].
* Kind of sort of done in a way with ''VideoGame/{{Persona 3}} FES''. Practically every female social link in the game involves the female in question falling in love with The Protagonist (even the Hermit, who turns out to be the Protagonist's ''homeroom teacher''). However, no matter what you do, it's Aigis who feels the strongest bond with you. [[spoiler:As a result, it's Aigis who obtains the Wild Card ability in ''The Answer''.]] Though, one could make an argument for Elizabeth having the strongest bond, considering how she [[spoiler:leaves the Velvet Room to try and revive him]], but not counting bonus content in ''VideoGame/{{Persona 4}}'', Aigis is always "the one".
** In the PSP remake, this is altered so that any of the female SEES members (Aigis, Fuka, Yukari and Mitsuru) can have the strongest bond with him and share the final scene with him, not just Aigis. The female can have Aigis or any of the male members of SEES (Akihiko, Ken, [[spoiler:or Shinjiro if you saved him]]), except Junpei, who feels no romance for the main, have the strongest bond. Of course, ''The Answer'' isn't in the PSP remake and the Answer wouldn't work the way it was if the female was chosen anyway so how this affects Persona canon is currently unknown.
** In the first ''VideoGame/{{Persona}}'', Its implied that both the main and Snow Queen plotlines are canon...somehow.
*** [[spoiler:The ending of the Snow Queen Quest puts it right before the first boss of the SEBEC quest, ending with the gang going to SEBEC to save Maki (who was left there when Mark panicked after being overwhelmed by the demons) Presumably, after reuniting with Maki, things went as they did in the main game, only with Yukino there.]]
* In ''VideoGame/SakuraWars'' expanded media such as the [=OVAs=], musicals, drama [=CDs=] and [[Anime/SakuraWarsTheMovie movie]], it never clearly states which girl(s) Ogami has a romantic relationship with. There are usually slight hints toward Sakura (as the poster girl) but since the games have a serial progressing plot and the [=OVAs=] and Drama CDS fill in the gaps it wouldn't jive to take control away from the player, and thus in the [=OVAs=] StatusQuoIsGod. The same thing applies for his New York-based nephew [[VideoGame/SakuraWarsSoLongMyLove Shinjiro]].
* ''[[VideoGame/GuardianHeroes Advance Guardian Heroes]]'' combines this with CuttingOffTheBranches: it is based on one ending of the original game... but then takes it off into a direction that doesn't actually exist in the original game.
* The sequel to ''VisualNovel/{{Heileen}}'' makes all of the endings AllJustADream. Canonically, only Robert and Ebele made it to the island with Heileen even though in the previous game, you ''always'' end up with the male love interest if you didn't trigger either of the {{Gay Option}}s, even if you did nothing but treat him like garbage the entire game.
* The ending of the ''Anime/MakaiSenkiDisgaea'' anime featured an amalgamation of [[VideoGame/DisgaeaHourOfDarkness the game]]'s good and bad ending, with [[spoiler:Laharl sparing Lamington's life, but still sacrificing his own in order to resurrect Flonne]].
* Some of the spinoffs from the ''Anime/TenchiMuyo'' universe pair him up with an entirely new girl, rather than stick him with a member of his UnwantedHarem.
* At the time that the ''Anime/MapleStory'' anime was created, there were already four available classes in [[VideoGame/MapleStory the game]], so there would naturally be some difficulty in deciding which one the protagonist belonged to. So what do the writers do? Make him a [[CherryTapping perma-beginner]]! (explained in the anime as him being a human while the other classes are represented by monsters from the different in-game towns)
* ''VideoGame/BreathOfFireIV'' had a "good ending" and a "bad ending" based on whether [[spoiler:Ryu ultimately agrees or disagrees with WoobieDestroyerOfWorlds Fou-lu that HumansAreBastards - which is complicated by the fact that Ryu and Fou-lu are two halves of a PhysicalGod who was SplitAtBirth due to a botched summoning, and the choice made dictated how the resulting SplitPersonalityMerge would go]]. In the recently completed ComicBookAdaptation of the game by Mag Garden, they manage to include both endings - [[spoiler:first going to what ''appears'' to be the "bad ending", then having Ryu conduct a BattleInTheCenterOfTheMind with Fou-lu, culminating in his use of [[MementoMacGuffin Mami's bells]] in what amounts to a HumansAreSpecial psychic bitchslapping, thus forcing the initial SplitPersonalityMerge apart, ''then'' going through the "good ending" sequence]].
** As if this weren't enough, the manga then takes this trope ''very'' literally with an ultimate THIRD ending [[spoiler:where Ryu and Fou-lu split ''again'', Fou-lu is basically BroughtDownToNormal, and the two live/hide out as monks at the Chek monastery where Fou-lu is basically trying to learn why Ryu thinks HumansAreSpecial]]. The latter resulted in [[AndThereWasMuchRejoicing Much Rejoicing]] in UsefulNotes/{{Japan}}, among others.
* ''VideoGame/SidMeiersAlphaCentauri'' is the unofficial sequel to ''VideoGame/{{Civilization}}'', picking up from where that game left off - when the spaceship reaches Alpha Centauri. However, while in ''Civilization'' the starship would be built by one nation (it's one of the win conditions), the starship in ''Alpha Centauri'' was a UsefulNotes/UnitedNations project sponsored by several nations.
** Which becomes a FridgeBrilliance[=/=]HilariousInHindsight, once one realizes that the expansion packs to the Civilization IV game allows alliances to build the spaceship as a team effort.
** In fact, one of the major sponsors was not a nation but a UsefulNotes/{{Namibia}}n company, which allowed its CEO Nwabudike Morgan to install a secret [[HumanPopsicle sleeper pod]] onboard the ship (he justifies it by claiming that he, technically, owns part of the ship).
** It's also a Third Option in a rather meta way: While launching the spaceship is a victory condition in the main series of games, the Transcendence Ending reveals that [[spoiler:in this reality, no one civilization "won," as the Earth has been rendered a burned-out, lifeless husk that you're responsible for restoring]].
* The story of the original ''Bible Black'' game has two main routes: viewpoint protagonist Minase either [[spoiler:keeps the eponymous grimoire and becomes Kitami's [[VillainProtagonist apprentice in the dark arts]]]], or (more conventionally) [[spoiler:lets it fall into Saeki's hands and winds up trying to save his [[ChildhoodFriendRomance Unlucky Childhood Friend]] Imari from [[GrandTheftMe Kitami's plot]]]]. The anime sacrifices the story's integrity ([[PornWithPlot which, yes, it]] ''[[PornWithPlot did]]'' [[PornWithPlot actually have]]) in order to [[PornWithoutPlot maximize the sex scenes]], [[spoiler:following the former route up to [[MoralEventHorizon Minase delivering Imari to Kitami]], at which point [[YouHaveOutlivedYourUsefulness Kitami abandons Minase for Saeki]], prompting an instant HeelFaceTurn in Minase, and the latter route takes over]]. Now, this combination [[TheyWastedAPerfectlyGoodPlot might actually have made some sense]] if they'd just included a line or two about [[spoiler:Kitami [[MagnificentBastard stringing Minase along to get at Imari]] (although it still wouldn't have excused Minase's just-too-late "change of heart")]], but they didn't.
* The original ''VideoGame/TwoWorlds'' has two possible endings: either you choose to join Gandohar and rule the world, or you kill Gandohar and save your sister Kyra. ''Two Worlds 2'' doesn't follow from either ending; instead it posits that you actually ''lose'' the final battle against Gandohar, and spend the next 5 years as a prisoner in his dungeon while he takes over the world, which is where the game picks up.
* ''[[VisualNovel/FateHollowAtaraxia Fate/hollow ataraxia]]'' is the sequel to a route that ''couldn't'' happen in ''[[VisualNovel/FateStayNight Fate/stay night]]'' most of the Servants and Masters are still alive, even those who died in every route. Turns out the explanation is that [[AWizardDidIt Rin did it]]. She made a mistake that turned the city into a location where all realities are possible and sorta merged all the routes plus various universes we didn't see into one. She's off at Clock Tower at the start of the game to make up for this mistake.
* In ''TabletopGame/{{Clue}}'', the board game, the culprit always ends up being one of the players (Mr. Green, Miss Scarlet, etc). In one of the endings to [[Film/{{Clue}} the film version]], [[spoiler: the murderer turns out to be ALL of the dinner guests (except Mr. Green), as well as an added character, Wadsworth the butler.]]
* ''VideoGame/{{Amagami}} SS'' retells the story six times, each one following a different route from the game.
* ''VideoGame/MagicalGirlLyricalNanohaAsPortable: The Gears of Destiny'' assumes that all the routes in the first game occurred, plus some extra stuff that never happened on-screen such as Fate and her EvilTwin Levi facing one another. This means that canonically, [[HumanoidAbomination the Materials]] were [[BackFromTheDead destroyed multiple times]] over the course of that one night.
* ''Franchise/TheLegendOfZelda'' is famous for its odd continuity, but for the several years during which the timeline wasn't known, many fans agreed that ''VideoGame/TheLegendOfZeldaOcarinaOfTime'' resulted in [[AlternateTimeline a split timeline]]: [[VideoGame/TheLegendOfZeldaTheWindWaker one where Hyrule is flooded after Ganondorf makes good on his promise to return]], and [[VideoGame/TheLegendOfZeldaTwilightPrincess one where Ganondorf is executed before he can even attempt his coup d'état]][[note]]Well, they try to execute him away.[[/note]]. All well and good, except that the [[VideoGame/TheLegendOfZeldaI four]] [[VideoGame/ZeldaIITheAdventureOfLink previously]] [[VideoGame/TheLegendOfZeldaALinkToThePast released]] [[VideoGame/TheLegendOfZeldaLinksAwakening games]] couldn't logically fit in either of these branches or with the games that took place before Ocarina. When Nintendo finally revealed an official timeline for the series in 2013, it was revealed that there is actually [[TakeAThirdOption a third timeline]] that takes place if Link '''[[TheHeroDies dies]]''' in ''Ocarina of Time'''s final battle.
* ''VideoGame/SuperRobotWarsOriginalGeneration'', which combines characters and events from the various games in the series, often does this when dealing with [[SchrodingersPlayerCharacter a choice in protagonists]] from the original games: The ''Alpha'' protagonist choices get fleshed out into full characters through DivergentCharacterEvolution, while all the ''Alpha 2'' protagonists appear. The game chooses one route from ''Advance'', but then lets the other survive and undergo his development from his own route in ''VideoGame/EndlessFrontier EXCEED''. The "Born male or female" protagonist options from ''Reversal'' become HalfIdenticalTwins, end so on.
* ''VisualNovel/GrisaiaNoMeikyuu'' leaves the ending to ''VisualNovel/GrisaiaNoKajitsu'' fairly ambiguous, but ''VisualNovel/GrisaiaNoRakuen'' firmly establishes that Yuuji did not pick any girl, date or sleep with any girl, but he ''did'' complete all their routes. This is actually a bad thing [[spoiler:because he promised Asako in Meikyuu that he wouldn't die until he had saved at least five people. Since he saved all five girls, he now embraces death.]]
* In ''VideoGame/FireEmblemAwakening'', TheHero Chrom could marry one of five characters: a female Avatar, Sully, Sumia, Maribelle or Olivia. Possibly to avoid the ''insane'' ShipToShipCombat over the issue, the Drama CD seems to go with the nameless village maiden as Chrom's wife, the one who, in-game, he only marries if all of the above options are already taken or [[FinalDeath dead]]. For each of the above 5, Chrom's KidFromTheFuture Lucina will have a sibling, which the audio drama also [[AdaptedOut adapts out]] though the village maiden, making Lucina an only child. There is also one Drama CD with a male Avatar and one with a female one, as well as a Drama CD where both male and female Morgans (the Avatar's child) meet up in the Outrealms. These are situations not possible in the game since [[SchrodingersPlayerCharacter both versions of these characters can't exist at the same time.]]
** The second example is the child characters' hair colors, which are inherited from their fathers. And since mostly any male can marry any female, that's a ''lot'' of possible hair colors to keep track of. To avoid this, official artwork generally despicts the children with their mothers' hair colours, save for some (Inigo has grey hair rather than his mother's pink). [[spoiler: Severa, Inigo and Owain's appearance in ''VideoGame/FireEmblemFates'' keep this: the DLC stage ''Hidden Truths'' explain that Good Anankos uses his magic to change said hair colors.]]
* ''VideoGame/FireEmblemFates'' also has child characters, who this time inherit their hair colors from their mothers (save for Shigure, who always has his mother Azura's hair no matter who his dad is). Like in ''Awakening'', the official artwork has them with their fathers' hair color, save for Mitama and Soleil who have [[RoseHairedSweetie pink hair]] [[note]](Justified in Soleil' case: her father is Laslow, so she gets her grandmother Olivia's pink)[[/note]]
* In ''VideoGame/CivilizationBeyondEarth'', there are 5 possible endings, 3 of which depend on the player's chosen affinity. Along comes the sort-of sequel ''VideoGame/SidMeiersStarships'', whose premise assumes that each of the factions chose a different planet to settle instead of the same one.
* In the arcade version of the original ''[[VideoGame/DoubleDragonI Double Dragon]]'', the Lee brothers fight each other at the end after both players defeat the final boss to see who wins over Marian, with the remaining player getting a kiss from her. When the game was remade for the Game Boy Advance under the title of ''Double Dragon Advance'', Marian interrupts just when one of the brothers deliver a finishing blow.
* ''Series/KamenRiderFaiz'' has secondary rider (and resident Jerkass) Masato Kusaka [[spoiler: die 3 different ways, depending on what adaptation you're watching/reading - in the TV series, his neck is snapped by Yuji Kiba, who claims the Kaixa gear for his own use. In the alternate ending ''Paradise Lost'', he's killed by Leo, the Lion Orphnoch. And in the novelization, he's torn limb-from-limb by Kiba, then killed for real by his StalkerWithACrush Saya Kimura]]. ''[[Film/HeiseiRiderVsShowaRiderKamenRiderWarsFeaturingSuperSentai Kamen Rider Taisen]]'' retcons [[spoiler: his death]] yet again, having him [[spoiler: die fighting against the Horse Orphnoch/Kiba alongside Takumi fighting as Faiz against the Arch Orphnoch]].