->''"Established, popular characters? Check. Reinterpretation of a beloved, classic storyline? Check. Stretched-out presentation of the same? Check. Helmed by a popular creator of original works in his own right? Check. Updated characterizations that sometimes toy with the original creator's personas? Check. A bigger, more contemplative/brooding/generally 'big' tone? Check. Yeah, it's an Ultimate book, at least as we know them now."''
-->-- [[http://joglikescomics.blogspot.com/2005/07/lots-of-manga-talk.html Jog,]] on Creator/NaokiUrasawa's ''Manga/{{Pluto}}''.

A kind of [[{{retool}} "reboot"]] designed to create an AdaptationDistillation effect in the same medium as the original. Said adaptation will usually incorporate bits of plot and design from each previous incarnation, but is overall a standalone world/story that can be understood by newcomers. A more specific and very deliberate form of AlternateContinuity.

Extremely common in {{Retool}}ed {{Cross Over}}s, as this allows a more precise meshing of plots than a {{Retcon}} may allow. It also allows for CanonWelding and greater cohesiveness owing to the advantage of foreknowledge that it possesses over the regular serial continuity (which generally more or less introduced new elements and characters [[IndyPloy as it went along]]). They usually contain several {{Mythology Gag}}s, referencing things from the original work (either as a remake of popular plots or circumstances, or as a mere detail that the fans may notice and the new readers may not even notice as such). If both universes are being used, the original and the ultimate, the ultimate universe may take more liberties than the original: for example, an important character may be KilledOffForReal, because StatusQuoIsGod only at the original universe.

Named for the Creator/MarvelComics "ComicBook/UltimateMarvel" line, which sought to update and streamline decades of continuity with a reboot but without canceling out the original storyline. Most superheroes under the "Ultimate" umbrella brand are given reboots of their own, but on a smaller scale -- Comicbook/{{Spider-Man}}'s [[ILoveNuclearPower 'radioactive spider']] origin story was replaced with an [[GeneticEngineeringIsTheNewNuke updated 'genetically engineered spider']] version. The "Ultimate" line, it should be noted, was intended to present Marvel's flagship characters to a new, modern audience; the rationale behind the quasi-reboot was that new readers to those series would be lost when confronted with nearly 30 years of backstory. On account of its success and popularity however, the Ultimate continuity went on for fifteen years, and by the time it was retired, it had fifteen years of backstory [[ComicBook/UltimateMarvel which became just as convoluted]] and [[LostInImitation as the original flavor]] and on account of its SettingUpdate, ended up becoming an UnintentionalPeriodPiece.

{{Fan Fiction}} writers frequently do this in {{Alternate Universe Fic}}s, essentially rebooting the mythos to incorporate their own ideas, {{Fanon}}, and [[CanonImmigrant other material]].

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!!Examples:
[[foldercontrol]]

[[folder: Anime and Manga]]
* ''Anime/RODTheTV'': Mainly retooled the ''Read Or Dream'' manga's basic story to fit into the storyline done in the ''Anime/ReadOrDie'' OAV.
* ''Bubblegum Crisis: Tokyo 2040'' is a deep reboot of the classic anime {{OAV}} series ''Anime/BubblegumCrisis''. However, so many changes were made, from character designs to backstory to the overall plot, complete with a pseudo-GainaxEnding, that most fans of the original series were rather unimpressed with the end product.
* This was essentially the hook of the Alternate Universe series of ''Anime/MobileSuitGundam''. As a result, ''Anime/MobileSuitGundam'' has '''seven''' of these! (''[[Anime/MobileFighterGGundam G Gundam]]'', ''[[Anime/MobileSuitGundamWing Gundam Wing]]'', ''[[Anime/AfterWarGundamX Gundam X]]'', ''Anime/TurnAGundam'', ''[[Anime/MobileSuitGundamSeed Gundam SEED]]'', ''[[Anime/MobileSuitGundam00 Gundam 00]]'', ''Anime/MobileSuitGundamAGE'').
** ''SEED'' is a more explicit example, as it bears a lot of similarities to the original series and is sometimes called "21st Century First Gundam" by Creator/{{Sunrise}}.[[labelnote:*]]''First Gundam'' is a semi-official nickname for the original show.[[/labelnote]]
** You can generally tell which series are examples by how big the focus is on their respective GUNPLA line. Seed and 00 have entire separate lines dedicated to them, making them stand out even more as reboot series.
** There was also ''For The Barrel'', an obscure LightNovel-styled story featured in Newtype magazine with radically redesigned characters and mecha.
* Naoki Urasawa, creator of ''{{Manga/Monster}}'', did this for ''Manga/AstroBoy'' with ''Manga/{{Pluto}}''. One reviewer explicitly compares it to Ultimate Marvel (see page quote). The [[Anime/AstroBoy 2003 animated series]] also arguably qualifies, as it took many of the unrelated storylines from the largely continuity-free classic manga and wove them together into a cohesive story-arc.
* The ''Anime/TenchiMuyo'' [=OVAs=] have two: ''Anime/TenchiUniverse'', which has all the main characters and more or less a basic outlining of their backgrounds, plus another character and the same BigBad, and ''Anime/TenchiInTokyo'', with pretty much the main characters in the latter.
* Creator/GoNagai's ''Manga/{{Devilman}}'' series possibly qualifies - there's a comic series, 1970s anime TV series, and three linked {{OVA}}s released between 1987 and 2000; each one of them retells the same events but in an updated, refined, condensed way. And, of course, there's ''Manga/DevilmanLady'', which is something of a combined ultimate edition, StealthSequel and full-on reboot...
** ''Anime/{{Mazinkaiser}}'' and ''Anime/ShinMazinger'' could be seen as this to the original ''Anime/MazingerZ''.
* ''Franchise/{{Negima}} Neo,'' which is [[RecursiveAdaptation based on the anime based on the manga]].
* This is Creator/HideakiAnno's stated intention with ''Anime/RebuildOfEvangelion''. However, there is evidence to suggest it may also be a StealthSequel to [[Anime/NeonGenesisEvangelion the original series as well]].
* ''Franchise/GhostInTheShell'': [[Anime/GhostInTheShell Almost]] [[Anime/GhostInTheShellStandAloneComplex every]] [[Anime/GhostInTheShellArise adaptation]] is this, usually taking a darker and more realistic approach to [[Manga/GhostInTheShell the manga]] and its themes.
[[/folder]]

[[folder: Comic Books]]
* As mentioned above, Creator/MarvelComics' ''ComicBook/UltimateMarvel'' is the TropeNamer, as it's the UltimateUniverse version of the normal ''Franchise/MarvelUniverse''.
** The primary changes made to the series is the SettingUpdate, with the superhero-mutant era being identified as TheNineties and TheOughties. The mutant phenomenon is originally the linchpin for the series, with Magneto being the GreaterScopeVillain for the series (as opposed to ''ComicBook/DoctorDoom''), the X-Men being the first super-team and ComicBook/TheUltimates (the Avengers' new name) being formed as a response to both Magneto and avoiding dependency on the X-Men. SHIELD is the primary GovernmentAgencyOfFiction and the overall arc for the entire franchise is GeneticEngineeringIsTheNewNuke with many plots and schemes tied back to the idea of recreating the Super Serum that worked perfectly in Captain America but in the hands of Norman Osborn leads to accidents (Peter Parker being bitten by one of his experimental spiders, which leads to Osborn making himself the Green Goblin and so on) and in the case of the Fantastic Four, leads to experiments in the Negative Zone.
** The streamlining of Ultimate Marvel becomes clearer if one compares it to the original Marvel continuity in its EarlyInstallmentWeirdness phase. The original Marvel run in TheSixties did not have ComicBookTime, it had character progression in almost real time, and showed growth and change, whereas the Ultimate continuity, owing to its streamlining, had ComicBookTime from the start. As such the Fantastic Four remain teenage to young adults and never quite become the ExperiencedProtagonist of the original First Family of the Marvel Universe (and eventually crack apart), Peter Parker passes a whopping 200 issues while never progressing past high school and graduating (while the original Steve Ditko-Stan Lee run shipped him off to college in Issue #31), and the series has the characters being YoungerAndHipper, HotterAndSexier, DarkerAndEdgier and staying that way for the entire continuity with very little CharacterDevelopment.
* ''Supreme Power'' is a mature UltimateUniverse version of Marvel's JusticeLeague [[CaptainErsatz Captain Ersatzes]], the SquadronSupreme. They even crossovered with the actual Ultimate Universe once. Creator/{{Warren Ellis}}' short-lived ''newuniversal'' is {{The New Universe}}'s Ultimate version.
* The Creator/DCComics ''All-Star'' line, which had the ''ComicBook/AllStarSuperman'' and ''ComicBook/AllStarBatmanAndRobinTheBoyWonder'' miniseries (with future projects based on WonderWoman, ComicBook/{{Batgirl}}, and possibly {{the Flash}}), was a form of this. The series aren't supposed to take place in any particular continuity (although ''All-Star Batman and Robin'' does [[ContinuitySnarl supposedly]] take place in the same continuity as Creator/FrankMiller's other Batman stories), and are supposed to be a concentration of what makes those characters special. As well, ''Justice'' is basically ''All-Star {{WesternAnimation/Superfriends}}'', even if it couldn't legally be called that.
* The ''ComicBook/EarthOne'' series of trade-paperbacks, consisting of ''ComicBook/BatmanEarthOne'', ''ComicBook/SupermanEarthOne'', ''ComicBook/TeenTitansEarthOne'' and ''ComicBook/WonderWomanEarthOne'' with ''Aquaman: Earth One'' and ''The Flash: Earth One'' announced, follow the Ultimate Marvel formula more closely than the All-Star line, intending to be a modern reboot in a new continuity rather than another mini-series written outside of continuity. The characters are all younger, more violent and asocial than the regular continuity.
* The New 52 relaunch also has some of this, but confusingly not always. Some series are just continuations of old series with renumbered issues while others are complete reboots or retellings. Can be quite confusing to tell which is which at times. Ironic, as the whole point of the New 52 was to make things less confusing for new readers.
** ''ComicBook/Earth2'' is this for the ''ComicBook/JusticeSocietyofAmerica'' and the Earth-2 setting in general, with some readers calling it DC's answer to Marvel's ''ComicBook/TheUltimates''.
* ''The Wild Storm'' is this for the {{Creator/Wildstorm}} Universe. It's worth nothing that the WSU was semi-rebooted once before, but never in a scale such as this.
* Devil's Due productions attempted this with ''Franchise/GIJoe Reloaded''.
* Creator/IDWPublishing's ''[[ComicBook/TheTransformersIDW Transformers Generation 1]]'' material, but this can be said of damn near all modern ''Transformers'' material.
* ''ComicBook/TeenageMutantNinjaTurtlesIDW'' has taken it upon itself to become this, introducing characters and concepts from different incarnations of the property and blending them together.
* ''ComicBook/PaperinikNewAdventures'', which ran from 1996 to 2001, got this treatment in the form of the less-acclaimed ''PK'', that ended in 2005.
* ''ComicBook/TheMultiversity'':
** The aim of ''Thunderworld'' is to be this in regards to ''ComicBook/{{Shazam}}''.
** Earth-7 was this to the Major Comics characters of Earth-8.
* ''Comicbook/Switch2015'' is this for ''Comicbook/{{Witchblade}}'' and several other Top Cow properties. The series is set in an alternate universe where the Witchblade is wielded by a teenage girl named Mary, and has a LighterAndSofter (and decidedly less {{Stripperific}}) style.
* After the release of ''Film/{{Dredd}}'', Rebellion started publishing comics in that same continuity in ''Judge Dredd Megazine'', making it an Ultimate Universe to ''Comicbook/{{Judge Dredd}}''.
* ''Comicbook/{{Rogue Trooper}}'''s 1989 reboot was intended to be this, with a reimagining of the main GI and his connection to his comrades and equipment... until Friday met Rogue, retconning the new stories into the original continuity.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Fan Works]]
* ''FanFic/MegaManDefenderOfTheHumanRace'' is one for the Mega Man cartoon and the games; it combines them while adding original characters and plot developments.
* ''FanFic/MegaManReawakened'' takes elements from every version of Mega Man to create an original universe.
* ''FanFic/MegaManRecut'' is one for the cartoon and the games, with every Robot Master set to appear and a heavily layered plot.
* ''Fanfic/ChildOfTheStorm'' is an odd, crossover based variant of this - it distils various Marvel and DC continuities into a mix featuring ''Franchise/HarryPotter'' and ''Literature/TheDresdenFiles'' and ''Franchise/MarvelCinematicUniverse'' (the latter is essentially taking the films as a basis and incorporating comics based material) and putting a whole bunch of personal top spin to create an entirely original merged universe.
* Creator/{{Voltalia}}'s ''Gemstone Saga'' is supposed to be this for ''WesternAnimation/StevenUniverse'', [[BroadStrokes combining elements of the original universe]] with new characters, new settings, and most importantly new plots.
* ''FanFic/TheMarvelDCProject'' is this for both Marvel and DC Comics.
* ''Fanfic/TheElementsOfFriendship'' serves as this for ''WesternAnimation/MyLittlePonyFriendshipIsMagic'', using several WhatCouldHaveBeen plot points and {{Development Gag}}s to expand the season-openers into full novels.
* ''Fanfic/PokemonResetBloodlines'' is a timeline with elements of various Pokemon series with new characters and plot elements, though many of the characters from the original material do retain their more moral aspects from their original portrayals.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Film]]
* The ''Franchise/StarTrek'' films headed by Creator/JJAbrams and his team are established as taking place in an entirely new timeline from the rest of the franchise, created inadvertently by Nero and old-Spock. As such, viewers can sit back and watch some familiar dynamics (the Kirk-Spock-[=McCoy=] friendship); some new ones (such as the Spock/[[spoiler:Uhura]] relationship); and entirely new fates for Captain Pike, Carol Marcus, and [[spoiler: Khan]], etc.--without taking offense at any violations of canon. Fans have taken to calling this "The JJ-verse" or "[=AOS=]" (Alternate Original Series). Paramount has since confirmed that the name of the alternate continuity is "Kelvin Universe", a reference to the titular spaceship in the opening scene of the 2009 film.
* ''Franchise/TheDarkKnightTrilogy'' is this for the entire Batman mythos. It streamlines many aspects from the comics and adapts it in a more realistic setting while still keeping the spirit of the Batman character intact. Specific traits includes elevating Ra's Al Ghul's Secret Society as the central pillar, responsible for training Batman, DoingInTheWizard with Ra's Al Ghul no longer being immortal but a title passed down in a secret society in a MasterApprenticeChain, Joker no longer having the show-biz motif and chemistry based gas gadgets but being a KnifeNut with byzantine manipulation skills and an AnarchyIsChaos sensibility.
* The ''Franchise/DCExtendedUniverse'' also took this approach both in relation to earlier films and the comics continuity:
** ''Film/ManOfSteel'' took this approach with Superman with the government military-industrial complex having an active presence and involvement in a plot, Superman's arrival being treated as a First Contact story, and streamlining many elements (such as Lois Lane knowing Superman's identity from the start) and Lex Luthor becoming a Mark Zuckerberg {{Hipster}} billionaire (being played by Creator/JesseEisenberg) rather than the older villain approach in the comics and previous films. Likewise, Superman ends up being the youngest and most recent of the superheroes.
** On the other hand Batman in ''Film/BatmanVSupermanDawnOfJustice'' is an ExperiencedProtagonist, albeit one with a more loose attitude to the ThouShaltNotKill rule than his more well known adaptations, but he's more or less the character who is the most timeless and notable for being the first cinematic Batman since Creator/AdamWest to wear gray tights and have a costume that resembles his comics' counterpart. ''Film/SuicideSquad'' likewise has a very young Joker but who is otherwise closer to the comics character in being a showbiz driven chemistry obsessed gang leader than Creator/HeathLedger's evil philosopher.
** ''Film/WonderWoman2017'' is interesting since in her case the SettingUpdate is pushed back to UsefulNotes/WorldWarI and she's made into an immortal ageless hero. Her powers and costume and personality is common from the comics but on the other hand her lore is heavily streamlined in a manner not dissimilar to Ultimate Thor.
* ''Franchise/MarvelCinematicUniverse'' is considered to be a more modern approach to the regular Marvel Universe at least in some respects but not in others.
** In general the characters are closer to the 616 originals, being ExperiencedProtagonist in the main rather than YoungerAndHipper. The series originally started with a more grounded science-fiction approach mirroring the aesthetics of Ultimate Marvel, from which it drew the concept of SHIELD as the linchpin of the entire events but eventually it led to a {{Reconstruction}} of the original continuity rather than the Ultimate continuity. SHIELD ended up being DemotedToExtra and the overall MythArc focuses on the Infinity Stones, which is shown to be both magical and scientific in nature.
** ''Film/GuardiansOfTheGalaxy'' on the other hand plays this straight. It took highly obscure characters and used it to provide WorldBuilding for the cosmic side of the Marvel universe, while updating the space opera concept of TheSixties and TheSeventies to a more UsedFuture aesthetic (similar to ''Franchise/StarWars'' and ''WesternAnimation/{{Futurama}}''), while making the obscure Peter Quill/Star-Lord the son of [[spoiler:cosmic entity, Ego the Living Planet]].
** ''Film/AntMan'' and ''Film/SpiderManHomecoming'' streamlines both stories by featuring an OldSuperhero mentoring a newcomer (Hank Pym and Tony Stark respectively). The latter film likewise provides a major SettingUpdate to Spider-Man's KidHero origins and changes his cast, background and social circumstance far more than the Ultimate continuity did.
* ''Film/PowerRangers2017'' is this to ''Series/MightyMorphinPowerRangers''.
[[/folder]]

[[folder: Literature ]]
* The [[Literature/TheSpaceOdysseySeries book sequels]] to ''Film/TwoThousandOneASpaceOdyssey'' are all set in the universe established in the film version (the mission terminates at Saturn in the novel, at Jupiter in the film), but each one is set in a somewhat divergent universe that does not necessarily take all events of the previous novel(s) into account. Thus ''2061'' diverges from and ignores the epilogue of ''2010'', and ''3001'' glosses over several major implications described in the three previous novels. Clarke stated in the introductions to all three sequels that this was deliberate.
[[/folder]]

[[folder: Live-Action TV ]]
* The Series/{{Arrowverse}} is this to several DC Universe characters.
* The Series/{{TeenWolf}} is loosely based on the movie of the same name. In a DarkerAndEdgier tone.
[[/folder]]

[[folder: Tabletop Games ]]
* Several campaigns by RPGA managed to receive the Ultimate treatment following their original publisher's demise. To wit, "Living City" became "Living Planar," "Living Greyhawk" evolved into "Blackmoor," and "Living Death" turned into "Fellowship of the White Star."
* Creator/WhiteWolf's ''TabletopGame/NewWorldOfDarkness'' is an Ultimate SpiritualSuccessor of the ''TabletopGame/OldWorldOfDarkness'', created to tighten focus, tweak rules mechanics, standardize rules between different gamelines, and replace a {{metaplot}} continuity that in just a little over a decade had become as convoluted and incomprehensible as any comic book universe with a more ambiguous, optional, and largely more internally consistent one.
** Another White Wolf product, ''TabletopGame/{{Exalted}}'', is given this treatment in the third edition, with the map redrawn and multiple new types of Exalt appearing.
* The fourth edition of ''TabletopGame/DungeonsAndDragons'' can be considered this to 3.5 edition due to its streamlined, MMO-inspired gameplay, drastic overhaul of many established D&D conventions, and incorporating races, deities, and ideas from different editions and campaign settings.
** Fifth Edition even moreso. After the poor reception of 4E, Fifth Edition is an attempt to WinBackTheCrowd by effectively making a stripped-down Third Edition, which makes it feel very familiar to anyone who played 1st or 2nd Edition ''AD&D''; it ends up serving as something of the new-generation Basic D&D, to {{Pathfinder}}'s status as this generation's ''Advanced TabletopGame/DungeonsAndDragons''.
* The "Paragons of Freedom" setting in the ''TabletopGame/MutantsAndMasterminds'' book ''Worlds of Freedom'' places the ''TabletopGame/FreedomCity'' characters in the ''Paragons'' setting. Between the more "realistic supers" tone of ''Paragons'' compared to ''Freedom'''s four-colour approach, and the fact superheroes are a fairly recent phenomenon, it feels a lot like an "Ultimised" version of the ''Freedom City'' setting.
[[/folder]]

[[folder: Video Games ]]
* ''VideoGame/SuperRobotWarsOriginalGeneration'' does this with EVERY universe and storyline from previous titles, making one streamlined plot out of all [[OriginalGeneration original characters]]. This is especially interesting, as the games are already a MassiveMultiplayerCrossover AdaptationDistillation of many diverse HumongousMecha anime.
** Played straight twice: not only is Original Generation an attempt to blend all originals into one cohesive storyline, but it got a ContinuityReboot. Originally started on the UsefulNotes/GameboyAdvance, a VideoGameRemake on the UsefulNotes/PlayStation2 entitled ''Original Generations'' tweaked the storylines and certain character personalities to make more sense, while adding new scenarios, units and characters from other ''VideoGame/SuperRobotWars'' (even some from obscure titles, such as ''Great Battle IV''). It's not as major a reboot as many other examples here, but it IS the Ultimate Universe for developer Banpresto.
* ''VideoGame/CastlevaniaLordsofShadow'' takes characters and elements from the entire series, but trades the Metroidvania exploration for a ''VideoGame/GodofWar'' beat'em up and the "vampire hunter/horror" theme for "Judeo-Christian and Paganism" to make it more relevant.
* ''VideoGame/DMCDevilMayCry'' streamlines many elements from the ''Franchise/DevilMayCry'' series' convoluted story while adding original wrinkles, such as making Dante's mother a literal [[FemaleAngelMaleDemon Angel]]. It also brings back a fan favorite Vergil, who was KilledOffForReal in the original series in the first game through a RetCon in the third.
* The cancelled "Maverick Hunter" game by Armature Studio would have been this to the VideoGame/MegaManX franchise, featuring a new realistic design for X, a supposedly darker storyline, and a [[AndroidsAndDetectives Bruce-Willisesq human partner]].
* The ''VideoGame/SonicBoom'' video game, as well as its follow-up [[WesternAnimation/SonicBoom cartoon]], serve as this for the Sonic franchise to give Sega room to experiment in a new continuity while still being close to the original.
* The world of ''VideoGame/YuGiOhBAM'' combines characters, story, and settings from the first three Yu-Gi-Oh anime.
* ''VideoGame/YuGiOhReshefOfDestruction'' features both manga-exclusive and anime-exclusive characters, referencing events from both continuities as well as its prequel game.
* ''BatmanArkhamOrigins''. While other games in the ''VideoGame/{{Batman Arkham Series}}'' try to focus on incorporating the best elements from across every Bat-adaptation, or showing how dangerous even the cheesiest Batman villain can be, ''Origins'' seems determined to modernize Gotham: Riddler becomes a hacker and cyberterrorist, Anarky resembles a modern "Guy Fawkes" street protestor, and a lot of focus is given to the corrupt prison and police system, both major talking points among the public when the game came out.
[[/folder]]

[[folder: Web Comics ]]
* ''WebComic/DumbingOfAge'' is basically a reboot of ''Webcomic/{{Roomies}}'', minus the MundaneFantastic that eventually took over the strip and plus the [[LoadsAndLoadsOfCharacters hundreds of characters]] created since then.
* ''Webcomic/TheJapaneseBeetle'' went through this in 2003, retelling stories from its 1998 origin in more modern style. WordOfGod later admitted that this was exactly what he was going for.
[[/folder]]

[[folder: Western Animation ]]
* ''WesternAnimation/GIJoeRenegades'' may be this in regards to the Franchise/GIJoe franchise.
* ''WesternAnimation/TransformersPrime'' as well for the Franchise/{{Transformers}} franchise. It is part of the Franchise/TransformersAlignedUniverse, which exists entirely outside the Transformers {{multiverse}}.
* ''WesternAnimation/ThunderCats2011'' functions as a darker, more dramatic take on the original ''WesternAnimation/{{ThunderCats|1985}}'', showing the more realistic aspects of the war between the cats and the lizards, as well as the culture of the main characters.
* ''WesternAnimation/VoltronLegendaryDefender'' is this to ''Anime/{{Voltron}}'' and its other source material ''Anime/GoLion''.
* ''WesternAnimation/DuckTales2017'' draws on [[WesternAnimation/DuckTales the original show]] and the ComicBook/DisneyDucksComicUniverse that it was based on, but modernized and with a few new elements.
[[/folder]]
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