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  • The 2016 anime adaptation of Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney uses this trope a lot:
    • Case 1-5 is not included, so all the exclusive characters from that case are written out entirely. Subverted in 2-1's case, where it is moved to be the premiere of season 2 instead.
    • The bellboy in "Turnabout Sisters" and Penny Nichols from "Turnabout Samurai" are Demoted to Extra big time, and could have been completely written out without altering the plot at all, given that they have no dialogue lines and are only shown for a handful of seconds.
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    • The Magatama sequences have been cut from the anime, likely to save on time.
    • Lotta Hart is completely removed from "Farewell, My Turnabout". Her role in the case is instead given to Larry.
    • "Director" Hotti appears neither in "Reunion and Turnabout" nor in "Farewell, My Turnabout".
    • Lisa Basil does not appear in "Recipe for Turnabout", as Phoenix and Maya never visit the victim's workplace.
  • Several chapters of Assassination Classroom that provide characterization for the supporting classmates were left out of the anime adaptation.
    • Maehara's limelight chapters (23 and 24) that establishes him as the class casanova seem to have been removed from the anime entirely. One can only imagine it had something to do with the whole "poisoning your schoolmates" thing.
    • Sousuke's limelight chapter (37), which shows off his artistry, also got skipped.
    • Meg's limelight chapters (44 and 45) that deals with an issue of a school student abusing Meg's generosity also didn't make the cut.
  • Berserk (1997):
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    • The first episode is a loose adaptation of the manga's first chapter with a few elements of the other seven chapters of the Black Swordsman arc: Guts's encounter with a female Apostle is skipped, though she still appears during the Eclipse. Puck is cut because, despite being a major character, the rest of the anime is an arc he doesn't appear in; the girl and her father (here her grandfather) from the manga's second chapter take Puck's place in what was his introductory scene. Instead of getting a Behelit from the Count, Guts gets one from the Snake Baron. Instead of encountering the Godhand in person, Guts sees them in his dream and Griffith is mentioned by two villagers.
    • The character Donovan, a mercenary who raped Guts as a child, is cut despite a fair amount of time being devoted to Guts' childhood. This event would lead to Guts' extreme aversion to being touched, which while not completely out of character for him, does seem a bit odd without an explanation.
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    • The tail end of the Golden Age Arc before the Eclipse is significantly cut down: A brief tournament Guts participates in, which introduced Silat and the Kushan Empire, is skipped. The Griffith Rescue Arc is much shorter, leaving out the fights with a squad of Kushan assassin and an Army of Thieves and Whores lead by the Apostle Wyald. Most critically, Skull Knight and any scene where he appears is cut out entirely, leaving no explanation at all for how Guts escaped the Eclipse at the anime's end.
  • Bokurano
    • When the protagonists first get in touch with the government, three officers of the Self-Defense Forces greet them. While Seki and Tanaka are present in the anime, and Tanaka is quite significant to the overall plot, Shoji is cut out, resulting in Seki being the one to point a gun at Koyemshi.
    • In the manga, Masaru "Kodama" Kodaka has two older brothers, while in the anime, he only has one.
    • Unlike in the manga, Tanaka does not get married or have a child after being forced to abandon Jun.
  • The first Breath of Fire manga, which adapted the first game, omitted the Quirky Miniboss Squad almost entirely (only 1 out of its 4 members appears) despite being the main enemies for a fourth of the game.
  • In the CLANNAD Visual Novel, Kappei was actually an important (if late introduced) character with his own ending and everything, but so far has not appeared in any Clannad anime adaptation ever.
  • Code Geass:
    • The direct manga adaptation cuts out the Knightmare Frames, which reduces the scale of the story overall by taking out a hefty chunk of the military aspect. Also removed are characters like Cornelia, who tied heavily into the military part of the anime.
    • Suzaku of the Counterattack cuts out most of the Ashford Academy characters, and rolls Shirley, Cecile, and Euphemia up into a new character.
  • The anime version of Deadman Wonderland has multiple differences from the manga. Certain characters like Chaplin were removed.
  • The short-lived manga adaptation of Demashita! Powerpuff Girls Z omitted pretty much every major Powerpuff Girls villain except for Mojo Jojo and Princess.
  • Ryo Asuka/Satan is left out of the 1972 Devilman anime. Most of Devilman's Rogues Gallery is likewise absent, save for Sirene, Psycho Jenny and Xenon (who takes on the Big Bad role for Satan).
  • In the anime adaption of Disgaea, Big Sis Prinny is left out, which is important as she's Laharl's mother and her death is the reason he's so bitter towards Love.
  • As a blending of the first few arcs of the manga, Dragon Ball: The Path to Power cuts out the Pilaf gang in favour of the Red Ribbon Army, from which Colonel Silver, Ninja Murasaki, and Captain Yellow are absent. Also gone are Krillin, the Ox-King, Chi-Chi, Monster Carrot, Tao Pai Pai, Upa, Bora, and Korin.
  • Nozomi is absent from the anime adaptation of Elfen Lied, despite being the reason the story is called "Elfen Lied" in the first place.note 
  • In two manga adaptations of the Fire Emblem: Genealogy of the Holy War games, different characters have been cut out:
    • Mitsuki Oosawa manga: Holyn and Beowulf, prospect love interests for Ayra and Raquesis, disappear from the story — while Ayra hooks up with Lex and Raquesis with Finn. (after having her Brother–Sister Incest deal with Eldigan cranked Up to Eleven until he dies) This was presumably done to avert Derailing Love Interests - which doesn't explain why Oosawa kept an expy of Eldigan's canon wife Grahnye around and made her a total asshole, while still capable of making a Love Triangle between Ferry, Lewyn and Sylvia without derailing the loser (Sylvia, who instead is very sympathetic).
    • On the antagonist side, Queen Hilda of Freege also apparently did not appear, and considering that she's one of the worst Hate Sink of the timeline, it's probably to make the story not too dark, or as seen with other antagonists, Oosawa is known to make otherwise one or two dimensional villains look more sympathetic, but Hilda is just far too evil for Oosawa to salvage, when she actually did include another Hate Sink, Prince Chagall of Agustria, and made his negative qualities more apparent.
    • Nea Fuyuki manga: Sylvia's children Leen and Corple. (And in the meantime, Leen's love interest Ares has his eyes set on Princess Julia instead). Fuyuki allegedly said in author's notes that she wanted to keep them around, but time restrains didn't allow her to.
  • The Fist of the North Star TV series for the most part, sticks pretty closely to the manga, but a few notable minor characters (such as Jackal's boxer underling and the General who started the nuclear war) were omitted during the adaptation. Most notably, Jakoh's sons Jask and Sheeno were removed from the early episodes of the Fist of the North Star 2 anime and replaced by two renegade Gento Kōken practitioners named Taiga and Boltz, who were originally conceived as filler villains before the Jakoh story arc was fully serialized in the manga.
  • The 2003 anime of Fullmetal Alchemist cut out a lot of the cast who were introduced partway into the original manga (the Xingese characters, the Briggs soldiers, etc.) since the anime Overtook the Manga. Ling appeared in a cameo, but was otherwise excluded.
  • Francine, who was one of the main Gate Keepers in the game, was completely omitted in the anime.
  • The anime version of Happy Happy Clover removes any of the human characters that showed up in the manga besides a few character mentioning them.
  • In Honoo no Alpen Rose, Madeleine aka the eldest daughter and White Sheep of the Toulonchamp family is written out of the anime.
  • The OVA of JoJo's Bizarre Adventure: Stardust Crusaders cut out a bunch of Dio's acolytes, including Gray Fly, Steely Dan, Mannish Boy, Terence T. D'Arby, Captain Tenille, Devo the Cursed, and Pet Shop.
  • Makkii-sen, Gigako, and Kyouko are all absent from the Kaguya-sama: Love Is War anime (though to be fair, their appearances amounted to a single panel each in the chapters that were adapted).
  • The featureless player character from Kantai Collection, The Admiral, was not made into a leading character or someone with known features in the Anime; he is an unseen figure instead, mentioned offhand by others, taking a different approach from other Anime Adaptations of popular works like The iDOLM@STER and Super Sonico, where The Producer and The Manager were given features and sufficient characterization.
  • Kingdom Hearts:
  • The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask:
    • The manga adaptation completely omits the sub-plot of Epona getting stolen by Skull Kid, leaving no way for Romani and Cremia to appear in the story. The artist apologizes for this at the end of the book and makes it up by showing an illustration of the two.
    • While many of the game's sub-plots are omitted for story reasons (unlike the game, the manga takes place throughout one three day cycle), the Kafei sidequest gets an entire chapter dedicated to it. This results in the Stone Tower Temple and Ikana Valley sequences, which were major to the plot, being resolved in one page (even Twinmold, the boss of the dungeon, is defeated only a few panels after it appears...and only one of them actually makes an appearance).
  • Lyrical Nanoha:
    • Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha The Movie 2nd A's left out Gil Graham and the Liese Twins, who were revealed to be behind the plot of the season. Meta-fictionally speaking, this is because the movie is an in-universe adaptation and their roles in those events were classified.
    • INNOCENT did this with the entire casts of ViVid and Force. In ViVid's case, it'd be difficult to have Vivio running around when her mother is currently 9 in this continuity. With Force, it probably has more to do with the fact that the season as a whole is almost universally despised. Everyone related to the Saint Church is also absent which means that Sein, Otto, and Deed never show up, even though all 9 other Numbers (including Due) are present.
      • Vivio and Einhart do show up later on via time travel.
    • Subverted with Misato Mikami (Nanoha's paternal aunt, and biological mother of her older sister/cousin Miyuki), who played a role in Nanoha's parent series but was completely absent from anything in the various Nanoha continuities only to make a small cameo 15 years later in the Reflection supplementary manga.
    • Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha Reflection cuts out the more fantastic elements (by series standards) from Gears of Destiny, meaning that it lacks the characters who showed up due to being resurrected as Dark Fragments (Precia and Linith)note  or time traveled (Vivio, Einhart, and Thoma). The Liese twins and Reinforce Eins (who had already been adapted out in the previous movie and Spared by the Adaptation in the games respectively) are also absent.
  • Shizuna Minamoto is absent from Studio Shaft's anime adaptation of Mahou Sensei Negima! and Mr. Takahata pretty much takes over her parts in addition to his own. Kotaro Inugami joins the cast in the manga as Negi's best friend; however, he makes no appearance in either anime series.
  • The anime version of Midori Days is only 13 episodes long whereas the manga is 85 chapters in all. Because of the difference in length, characters like Nao and her father Shirou were left out of the anime, along with Lucy.
  • The anime for Miss Kobayashi's Dragon Maid completely cut out Ilulu (it would have taken several episodes to integrate her into the cast, something a 13 episode series wouldn't be able to afford). All of the cameos by other Cool-Kyou Shinsha characters were also removed (with the exception of Frau Rabbit).
  • The anime adaptation of My Monster Secret ends just before Rin Kiryuin, Asahi's Grandkid from the Future, joins the castnote , and the episodes that adapted manga chapters where she did appear simply handed her role over to other characters (primarily Nagisa Aizawa). Since Rin's timeline is a massive driving element for the rest of the series, any subsequent anime adaptations would have to ignore this one and start fresh.
  • Onegai! Samia-don is an Animated Adaptation of the book Five Children and It, but the eldest daughter Althea isn't included in the series and Canon Foreigner Anne Hopkins takes her in-story spot.
  • In the manga adaptation Persona Q: Shadow of the Labyrinth, the first form of the Final Boss does not appear. Once the protagonists reach the end of the Very Definitely Final Dungeon, the boss enters its second form.
  • Pokémon:
    • Leaf,note  Hilda and Hilbert,note  Nate and Rosa,note  Calem,note  and Elio and Selenenote  do not show up at all despite being Player Characters from some of the games.
    • Gary doesn't have a sister like his game counterpart, since Ash didn't need the Town Map that Daisy provides, nor does he spend much time in Pallet Town, where she resides.
    • Game rivals, Wallynote , and Hugh are completely absent. Silver is mostly absent, but makes a very brief cameo in a special and got an expy in Paul during the Diamond and Pearl saga.note  Cheren didn't appear as a rival but appeared as his Gym Leader incarnation in Pokémon Black 2 and White 2; this means he and Bianca are different ages and don't know each other at all in the anime.
    • Koga's daughter (and Gym Leader successor) Janine from Pokémon Gold and Silver never makes an appearance. The part of the game she's in requires visiting Kanto to get the region's badges; while Ash did return to Kanto to face off against the Hoenn Frontier Brains, he didn't visit the Gyms due to the fact that he'd already gotten the badges. Koga does get a sister named Aya, who pretty much fills the same role as Janine.
    • While their existence is acknowledged, some Elite Four members from Hoennnote  and Unovanote  are never shown. Will and Karen from Gold and Silver and Drasna from X and Y never appear as well.
    • Sinnoh and Johto's Frontier Brains other than Palmer and Caitlinnote  do not appear.
    • Characters from spinoff games rarely appear in the anime. The only ones who do are from Pokémon Snapnote  and the Pokémon Ranger series. The Pokémon Colosseum, Pokémon XD: Gale of Darkness, Pokémon Trozei!, and Pokémon GO characters don't appear. This does not include the one-off Pokémon Mystery Dungeon specials.
    • AZ and the Ultimate Weapon do not play a role in the anime's version of Team Flare's plot.
    • While Xerneas and Yveltal appear in Pokémon: Diancie and the Cocoon of Destruction, they have no role or appearance in the main anime series itself (unlike every mascot legendary before them), with Team Flare's plot instead involving Zygarde. The closest thing they get is a side special, but even then it's a flashback.
    • Game elements like Technical and Hidden Machines are never used in the anime.
    • The postgame in X and Y features Xerosic being investigated by Agent Looker and finding redemption with the help of a young girl named Emma. Neither of these happen in the anime.note 
    • Cynthia's sister is a minor character who doesn't have a sprite of her own, however she still appears in the games. In the anime, however, only Cynthia and her grandmother appeared.
    • Mr. Fuji, the old man who takes care of Pokémon in Lavender Town doesn't make any appearance in the anime. Though a Dr. Fuji creates Mewtwo in Pokémon: The First Movie, he's a distinctly different character from Mr. Fuji.
    • Porygon's evolutions never appeared in the anime, due to it being associated with the infamous episode that caused seizures, even though it was actually Pikachu's fault in the scene. Their lone appearances have been brief cameos in some of the later movies.
    • Zinnia, Lisia, and Aarune from Omega Ruby/Alpha Sapphire haven't made an appearance either.
    • The Team Rocket Executives - Proton, Ariana, Petrel, and Archer - have never appeared, either in their original designs or remake designs, despite Team Rocket being such an important aspect of the anime. Unlike Red in the games, Ash has not caused Team Rocket to disband and thus Neo Team Rocket or Team Rainbow Rocket never came to be.
    • The games feature various cellphone-like items, such as the C-Gear, which are usually ignored in the anime. Word of God is that that they would make the plots easy to work around (ie, if the plot has character split up then all they'd have to do is call each other). Misty had the original Poké Gear in one episode after her departure, Brock used the one from the remakes as a map throughout the Diamond & Pearl series, and Dawn had the Poketch.
    • For the longest time, Bill was the only PC programmer from the games that has appeared in the anime (and in only one episode at that). Nothing about him being in charge of the Pokemon Storage System is even mentioned since that doesn't appear in the anime either. No appearances have been made from Lanette, Bebe, Amanita, or Cassius. Molayne does make an appearance in the Sun and Moon anime, but again, his role as a PC programmer is not mentioned at all.
    • Courtney from Team Magma does not appear in the anime.
    • The remake designs of Team Magma and Team Aqua don't appear in the anime because it'd be redundant.
    • The Distortion World is the catalyst of Platinum's plot, but never appeared in the anime. Pokémon: Giratina and the Sky Warrior instead used a very similar (yet noticeably different) area called the "Reverse World".
    • The Shadow Triad do not appear in the anime.
    • Lentimas Town and Black City are the only towns and cities in the Unova region not to be featured in the anime. Same for White Forest.
    • Kiloude City in the Kalos region has never been featured either.
    • Necrozma's backstory makes no mention of Ultra Megalopolis, the ancient populace of which were the catalyst for the Legendary Pokémon's vicious nature and pillaging of light. Instead, Necrozma lost its light when it exhausted its power protecting Poipole and Naganadel's world from a meteor.
    • Professor Sycamore's recurring assistants Sina and Dexio didn't appear in the anime, however one of Team Rocket's Paper-Thin Disguises is inspired by their Sun & Moon clothing.
    • The Game Corners don't appear in the main anime after the slot machines in “The Song of Jigglypuff” because of the gambling issues the ones in the games are feared to cause.
  • Pokémon Adventures:
    • Orre is never referenced. This means that none of the Pokémon Colosseum or Pokémon XD: Gale of Darkness characters cameo in the manga.
    • Red in the games has a mother who appears in two different pairs of games (the Kanto and Johto ones) and has an off-screen father. Red in Adventures however either suffers from a mean case of Invisible Parents or outright Parental Abandonment. He is one of the only, if not the only, Pokedex holder with no known relatives.
  • Pokémon Generations:
    • None of the female player characters make an appearance. Instead, the male protagonists are used — the one possible exception being "The Scoop", where the Hoenn protagonist is dressed in an all-concealing Magma Suit, making it ambiguous if it's Brendan or May underneath.
    • Lucas and Dawn never show up — in "The New World", Cynthia confronts Team Galactic atop Spear Pillar alone, while "The Magma Stone" only has Looker and Buck present; in both situations in Platinum, the player was present with them.
    • The protagonists of Pokémon Black 2 and White 2 are absent in the two episodes focusing on the events of those games. In "The King Returns", instead of Nate/Rosa appearing, Hilbert from Pokémon Black and White appears with Zekrom to aid N; something that never happened in B2/W2's story.
    • In "The Investigation", which is based on the Looker sidequest in Pokémon X and Y, Mimi deactivates Emma's Expansion Suit, as opposed to Xerosic (who is absent entirely
  • When Popotan got its adaptation, some characters disappeared completely. One of them was the main character.
  • The animated adaptations of the Queen's Blade gamebooks took some liberties towards some characters and plot events:
    • Hans (Hobby Japan's collective Word of God and Author Avatar) does not appears in the animated TV series, but he appears in the CD dramas and the videogames, His role is replaced in the anime by The Head Archangel instead.
    • Nyx doesn't appear in the first season, as the producers of the anime seems to run out of episodes for including her (other than a brief cameo), not to mention she's not very important, plot-wise, for the story (despite having a designated voice actress). She appears in the second season for real.
    • Alice, the main protagonist of the Queen's Gate novels and gamebooks, only appears in the Queen's Gate Spiral Chaos game and she doesn't appear in the anime. Also, neither her friends nor her family in Europe and her backstory from the novels are mentioned anywhere in the game.
    • While she is a crossover character in the Queen's Gate Spiral Chaos game, Noel Vermillion is the only character from her universe who appears, and despite being mentioned in the game and being the main motivation for her for being in the game, Jin Kisaragi doesn't not appear in the game. This is somewhat egregious, as while the events of the game are not canon for the BlazBlue universe, both characters are vital for Hazama aka Yuuki Terumi for his plans to work and he's not mentioned anywhere.
    • Also, none of the characters from the Sword of the Unicorn novels appears anywhere, as the events of those novels are not canon, since the novels took some liberties with the already established backstory. (For beginners, there's no QB tournament here)
  • Ranma ½:
    • Hikaru Gosunkugi, one of Akane's hopeless suitors, is largely absent during most of the anime and doesn't make an appearance until much later in the series. Until then, his role was usually given to Sasuke, a character original to the anime.
    • Akari (Ryoga's later girlfriend) and Konatsu (Ukyou's Hopeless Suitor) don't show up at all in the anime.
  • Sailor Moon:
    • The following Sailor Guardians don't exist in the anime: Sailor Ceres, Sailor Pallas, Sailor Juno, Sailor Vesta, and Sailor Cosmos, albeit the first four still appear as characters (specifically as villains who undergo a Heel–Face Turn) but never become Sailor Guardians. The last one technically appeared as a silhouette.
    • Sailor Galaxia lost about half of her minions in the transition. They were Sailors Heavy Metal Papillon, Lethe, Mnemosyne, Phi, and Chi.
    • Kotono Sarashina was a classmate and fangirl of Rei's. She was presumably removed due to Koan's role being heavily rewritten.note  Ironically, she was named for Usagi's voice actress.
    • Saphir had two droids, Aquatici and Veneti, that didn't make it. What sealed their removal was droids being completely different in the anime and Saphir himself being Demoted to Extra.
  • Saint Seiya:
    • The "Sanctuary Chapter" OVA adaptation of the Hades saga removed Harpy Valentine and Radamanthys' Praetorian Guard from the final chapters. This is specially notable for Basilisk Silpheed who returns much later in the 2nd "Inferno Chapter" OVAs and references a meeting with the Bronze Saints that never happened.
    • In the manga, Black Dragon has a blind brother that is able to attack in the darkness, and Shiryu has trouble fighting them until he figures out there are 2 of them, defeats the blind Black Dragon, then the fight continues one on one. In the anime, the entire section featuring the second Black Dragon was omitted, skipping directly to the one on one fight.
    • In Saint Seiya: The Lost Canvas, the anime left out a small part near the end of season 2 where Hades poses as the Pope and convinces a small group from Athena's army to advance and enter a zone protected by the barrier of his castle, resulting in their deaths. Salo, the youngest of Taurus Aldebaran's three apprentices, is among the deceased.
  • School-Live!:
    • The anime removed the other survivors Kei and Miki met in the mall at the start of the Zombie Apocalypse. The only one left is the old Christian woman (who became Taroumaru's owner in the anime). In the manga going from living in a group, to only being Miki and her friend Kei, to then just being Miki alone until she was rescued exists to show off Miki's troubles and loneliness, however the anime ignored that element of her character.
    • The final episode completely removed the helicopter attempting to rescue the girls. It avoided a Downer Ending in exchange for a Bittersweet Ending by scrapping the part where it crashes and Yuuri has a breakdown.
  • Splatoon removes almost all of the Great Octoweapons that appear in the first game. The only one to appear in the manga adaptation is Octostomp.
  • Sonic X has appearances by nearly every main character from the games except Metal Sonic.
  • Street Fighter II V has almost the entire cast of Super Street Fighter II, with the only ones missing being Dee Jay, T. Hawk, E. Honda, and Blanka. They were originally going to appear, but plans for the show changed after its episode order was Cut Short.
  • In Sword Art Online: Alternative Gun Gale Online, Karen "LLENN" Kohiruimaki is said to have a few siblings, with her oldest sister having a husband and a young daughter. While these characters are sometimes mentioned in the light novels, and Karen's sister and niece appear after her real life meeting with M in Volume 2, they are never even mentioned in the anime.
  • In the anime adaptation of Trinity Blood, many characters from the novels (such as some members from the Vatican and Rosenkreuz Orden) do not appear while some have their roles reduced though some of them do appear in the manga.
  • Ataru's best friend Kosuke does not appear in the anime adaptation of Urusei Yatsura, which gave most of his role and lines to Lum's Stormtroopers.
  • Sara Shirabuki from Vampire Knight never made it into the anime adaptation.
  • Masaki, along with the Akasaka Wangan Midnight story arc he was featured in, was completely gutted out from TV anime.
  • The Warrior Cats graphic novel trilogy SkyClan and the Stranger (and bonus manga at the end of SkyClan's Destiny) is unique among Warriors mangas in that they try to make all SkyClan cats appear, or at least be mentioned. While almost the entire Clan is in there, the only ones to not show up or be mentioned at all in either the trilogy or the bonus manga are Sagepaw and Egg, for whatever reason.
  • Keiichi didn't show up in the X1999 anime. The three main characters of CLAMP School Detectives didn't appear in the anime as well (probably due to copyright reasons since CLAMP School Detectives is animated by a different studio), but the chairman of CLAMP School looked similar to Nokoru Inomoyama except he has a Porn Stache.

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