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Adaptation Expansion

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"The movie follows the book, sort of, if you can imagine a cute balloon inflated into a zeppelin."
Roger Ebert's review of The Cat in the Hat (2003)

This is the complete opposite of Compressed Adaptation. It occurs when a short, very simple tale is adapted into a medium with much larger space requirements, such as film or serial television. To meet the size requirements, the storyline will have to be padded with some new stuff, and sometimes a lot of it. Cue Alternative Character Interpretations that require elaborate backstories, minor characters given much larger parts, completely new characters, and sometimes Plot Holes, sequels when the source material had none, Plot Tumors, and a triple dozen subplots that were not in the original work, to name but a few examples.

This has a tendency to make the story unrecognizable as a retelling of the original, if done badly. In some instances, the original story might end up as one small part of a much larger, more convoluted story. This will usually be the climax, in which case the film essentially gave you an hour or more of Back Story. This most often happens with movies based on novellas, short stories, video games or children's books. In the children's books instance, this can lead to the introduction of Darker and Edgier into a normally benign story or the reintroduction of elements lost to Disneyfication of classic stories.

While this trope can be associated with the fan complaint "They Changed It, Now It Sucks!", it also can be done excellently. Remember that Tropes Are Tools and extensions for adaptations might need to happen to fill the required runtime, just going about it right is the problem most productions face.

Compare Expanded Universe. See also Adaptation Distillation, Compressed Adaptation, Humble Beginnings, Patchwork Story, Not His Sled, Updated Re-release. An adaptation In Name Only goes even further than this, throwing out the original plot and making things up out of whole cloth.

Example Subpages:

Other Examples:

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  • The Last Supper: In The Four Gospels, the individual reaction of the Apostles to the news of a traitor is not described, and neither is the physical appearance of the Apostles or Jesus. In visualizing the Last Supper, Leonardo uses the personalities of the Apostles as described elsewhere to extrapolate how he thinks they would react and puts the ideas to paint.

    Comic Books 
  • The Mega Man (Archie Comics) comic turned a series of video games with little more than Excuse Plots into a full-fledged series with a greater sense of continuity.
  • Sonic the Hedgehog (Archie Comics) was once a continuation of the SatAM series, then it started heavily incorporating the Sega continuity, and then it evolved into a highly extensive adaptation of both continuities, adding its own elements, and filling in many holes left in by both, even though it's still its own continuity. As of the reboot, it's now a direct adaptation of the games universe with a bunch of original elements thrown in for flavor, as well as a few lingering SatAM influences (namely the original Freedom Fighters, though they've been completely overhauled as well).
  • Ni GHTS Into Dreams expands heavily on the lore of the games, including how Twin Seeds was founded and the details of NiGHTS' betrayal of Wizeman, as well as Earth stuff happening.
  • The comic book adaptation of Pocket God not only puts the pygmies on a larger island, but also gives them different personalities and designs to distinguish them from each other. Later in the series, a tribe of female pygmies is introduced, which the video games lack.
  • In The Multiversity, Grant Morrison is featuring an ongoing theme of presenting Batman counterparts on each Earth who were all inspired by something besides a bat, as a reference to a short story by Martin Pasko from Batman #256. In the context of the multiverse, Scorpion (inspired by a scorpion) is on Earth-41, Stingray (inspired by a stingray) is on Earth-34, Owl (another Bruce Wayne inspired by an owl) is on Earth-35, Shooting Star (inspired by a shooting star) is on Earth-47, and Iron Knight (inspired by a suit of medieval armor to become a literal knight) is on Earth-36. Morrison seeks to pose the question of how far the character can be stretched before they're no longer Batman.
  • The comic book adaptation of Injustice: Gods Among Us greatly fleshes out and expands the world of the game, and features a much larger cast of characters.
  • The manhua adaptation of The King of Fighters XII, considering that it was based on a plotless Dream Match Game that essentially served as an beta release of The King of Fighters XIII, thus had to make up a whole plot involving the cast getting caught in the crossfire between Magaki and Nameless, alongside throwing in several cameos from characters such as Kasumi Todoh, the American Sports Team, and perhaps most surprisingly, Wolfgang Krauser, Laurence Blood and Axel Hawk from Fatal Fury 2.
  • Likewise, the comic adaptation of Contest of Champions features a much more substantive and character-driven story than the Let's You and Him Fight Excuse Plot of the video game.
  • Warlord of Mars and its many spin-offs and limited miniseries are based on Edgar Rice Burroughs' John Carter of Mars. Certain original storylines that are exclusive to its publisher Dynamite Comics expand on main characters backstories that were not covered in the book, such as Warlord of Mars: Dejah Thoris, a prequel set 400 years before the arrival of John Carter, focusing on the titular heroine (as well as Carter's Love Interest)'s life and adventures before she met the Earthman.
  • Disney Ducks Comic Universe: Carl Barks' comic book adaptation of the Donald Duck short "Trick or Treat" expands a bit on why Donald is so mean to his nephews (he hates Halloween because of trick-or-treaters interrupting his privacy), and adds a few extra gags (like Witch Hazel disguising herself as an attractive lady duck, and later summoning a monster to steal Donald's candy).
  • Mortadelo y Filemón: In the 1988 album "Los sobrinetes" (The Little Nephews), Mortadelo and Filemón coincidentally introduce their nephews, who look exactly like them, and wear exactly the same clothes but with short trousers, with no introduction or even mention of their parents.
  • Rainbow Brite focuses more on Wisp's Earthly life before she becomes Rainbow Brite, including her friends and family.
  • In Superman Smashes the Klan, much of the story is expanded upon from the original radio show to the point of some parts being related In Name Only. Characters only mentioned or having small roles have much bigger parts in the story along with never before had characterization.
  • Teen Titans: Teen Titans: Year One is an updated retelling of the Origins Episode that served as the conclusion to the original 1966 volume, expanding the story of how the original roster came together as a team from a single-issue story into a six-issue miniseries.
  • Ultimate Spider-Man: The first arc doubles as a three-issue expansion of Amazing Fantasy #15, thus expanding on Uncle Ben as a character and showing why his death deserved to be seen as tragic.
  • Wonder Woman Historia: The Amazons is one for the origin and history of Wonder Woman’s version of the Amazons. The main inspiration of the series is the backstory given to them by George Pérez in the first issue of his run on Wonder Woman back in the eighties, which covered about half of the 36 pages of that issue. The first issue here alone is over 70 pages.

    Comic Strips 
  • The Mickey Mouse newspaper strip started out with an adaptation of the first Mickey Mouse short produced, Plane Crazy, but after Minnie parachutes off the plane, Mickey runs into a storm and finds himself crash landed on an island filled with pirates, and the strip goes on from there...

    Eastern Animation 

  • When Counting Crows covered Joni Mitchell's "Big Yellow Taxi", they added a couple of verses, giving the song an environmental message that wasn't really present in the original.
  • The Red Hot Chili Peppers cover of "Love Rollercoaster" adds a rap verse that was not in the original song.
  • The third movements of Gustav Mahler's second and third symphonies are greatly expanded instrumental versions of the Lieder "Des Antonius von Padua Fischpredigt" and "Ablösung im Sommer."
  • Yes's cover of Simon & Garfunkel's "America" (originally recorded for a record company sampler and available on the remaster of Fragile), due to having multiple extended instrumental passages, changed a 4-minute folk-pop song into a 10-minute progressive rock epic
  • Nursery Rhyme Johny Johny Yes Papa: If you listen to the original song, this is all about a child sneaking into the kitchen to eat some sugar out of the jar. In this YouTube video, it has several variety of sweets and desserts than just only sugar and also has An Aesop about eating lots of snacks will make you sick after lying.
  • The finale of Aaron Copland's Third Symphony incorporates a reworked version of "Fanfare for the Common Man" as the introduction to a much longer movement.
  • To Be a Bug Catch is my (New) Destiny expands on the lore of Viridian Forest, confirming it is part of a long band of forest that covers mountains and plains all the way to Johto, also containing the Ilex Forest as part of itself. This also includes a relationship with Celebi.
  • When the Brush hits the Canvas: Being a novelization, several elements of the original game are expanded upon.
    • Hyrule's unchanged world map since A Link to the Past is explained to be a result of a general economic and societal decline.
    • The Eastern Palace is explained to be an archeological site that had been named a "palace" after the Hedge Maze that surrounded it - its true name having been lost in time - and almost impenetrable. Some more detail is given in its construction.
    • At one point, Ravio launches on a full-blown lecture of how exactly magic functions.
    • Stalfos are explained to be skeletons of people fallen in battle or died in a cursed place.
    • The reason there are no boats or ships is because the Zoras are so fiercely territorial that they destroyed Hyrule's art of sailing by attacking ships.
  • RecD: Cuphead: The Delicious Last Course does not properly explain the Big Bad's motivations for wanting to take over the astral plane, and it only vaguely hints at what he plans to do with his newfound power. RecD's cover of "Baking the Wondertart," however, gives him a proper backstory and motivations: All the residents of Inkwell Isle 4 were constantly demanding Chef Saltbaker to make bread, cake, and other confections for them. Saltbaker was overworked and stressed. This filled him with rage, driving him to the point of insanity. When he gains control of the astral plane, he planes to fill the world with the salt making up his body, shred everything and everyone up with his salt grains, and reform the world into one made of salt.

  • Stern Pinball's Batman greatly expanded the role of Scarecrow, elevating him from a mere cameo in the film to a near-equal for the Joker.

  • 1865 is largely inspired by a play Steve Walters and Erik Archilla created in college called Mars which follows the life of Edwin Stanton.

  • While it also had some Adaptation Distillation, the Radio Drama of Final Fantasy Tactics Advance also has an Adaptation Expansion of the game, such has the appearance of Nono's airship and the event when Ritz, Mewt, and Doned's arrival in Ivalice is shown. Also, there are new character, whose name is "Moogle Knight" and "Madam Kiri".
  • The Audio Adaptations of Alex and Clare In The Community naturally have to create plots out of whole cloth, to convert a three panel gag strip into a half-hour sitcom.
  • The Star Wars Radio Dramas included several scenes that were either cut from the films or entirely new.
    • The A New Hope play starts as early as a few months before the movie. We get Leia using the Tantive IV to smuggle medical supplies to Rebel forces on Ralltiir, learning about the Death Star plans and acquiring them from Rebels on Toprawa, and Luke watching the battle between Tantive IV and the ISD Devastator (a cut scene that had a couple frames from it shown in one of the Visual Dictionaries a decade and a half later).
    • The Empire Strikes Back showed the Battle of Derra IV, which was alluded to in several later EU materials including the first four books of the X-Wing Series. We also got a conversation between Han and Luke after he got the storm shelter put up in the Hoth wastes. It also explained Lando faking punching Han when they first meet as Lando wanting to see if Han still had his old reflexes.
    • Return of the Jedi included Luke constructing his new lightsaber. Being that it was performed after the current EU got into full swing, we also got a Call-Forward to The Thrawn Trilogy in the form of a conversation between C-3PO and an undercover Mara Jade.
  • The radio adaptation of The Twilight Zone followed the plots of the original television episodes, but also added in several new scenes due to each episode being about 10-15 minutes longer than the television stories they were adapting.
  • The H. P. Lovecraft Historical Society's films:
    • The adaptation of "Imprisoned with the Pharaohs" expands on the thirty-page short story by adding Bess Houdini and recurring character Nathaniel Ward as major players in the narrative, in addition to including Houdini's stage show and introducing a subplot about Houdini trying to buy a sarcophagus and mummy from a museum.
    • The adaptation of "The Call of Cthulhu" is framed as a police investigation, which causes a significant change from the original story at the end.
    • Dagon: War of Worlds takes Lovecraft's original very short story "Dagon" and turns it into a full-blown, feature-length sequel to "The Shadow Over Innsmouth" in the style of Orson Welles's famous The War of the Worlds broadcast.
  • The radio version New Dynamic English has the original content from the software (such as the Harris Family) but there are also new characters and it supposedly takes place after the events of the software (Max quits being a businessman after missing his family, Kathy left her job for the newspaper in New York).
  • During the original run of the BBC comedy The Men from the Ministry, episodes where restricted to 25-30 minutes so scripts where often cut, sometimes heavily. However, when Finland's public-broadcasting company YLE made a Finnish version, they had no such restrictions. This lead to episodes being anywhere from 25 to 48 minutes, often featuring material which was either partially or completely left out from the originals. note 
  • Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde expands upon the novella considerably while adding common tropes found in adaptations. In particular, Jekyll's childhood, glossed over in his confession in the novel, is focused on at the start of the series.

  • Dino Attack RPG is a massive Adaptation Expansion of LEGO Dino Attack. The original LEGO Dino Attack line had a very simple plot: mutant dinosaurs are attacking the city, and four guys are trying to stop them. However, the Dino Attack RPG revealed that this has happened all over the world, bringing in other LEGO-themed locations and showing the impact that these events have had on them. The Dino Attack Team of the original theme consisted of four men, but the RPG has shown that it is actually much larger and there are women helping out. It's also explained what happened to the citizens of the various places that have been invaded (an issue completely ignored in the original line), and there is even some background as to why the heck all this is happening in the first place.

    Tabletop Games 
  • The One Ring, being based on The Lord of the Rings, has a great deal to say about areas the books don't explore much, particularly the history of the lands of The Hobbit after the events of that book.
  • Pokemon Tabletop United is a fan-made RPG adaptation of the Pokémon series, which seeks to further diversify Pokémon and improve weaker species, by adding many more abilities and special traits than in the handhelds.
  • Ravenloft itself is an expansion of an extremely well-received 1st edition adventure, also called "Ravenloft", and its sequel, "Ravenloft 2: The House on Gryphon Hill".
  • The digital game for Sentinels of the Multiverse is more along the line of clarification. With the addition of nemesis dialog and the expanded or new bios for variant heroes in the video game version, more tidbits about the universe, the relationships between the heroes and villains and their personalities came to light than had been previously available:
    • The Freedom Six Wraith's art caused a lot of speculation in the fandom as to why she had The Operative's weapons; her video game bio and dialog with Iron Legacy clarified that she had in fact killed The Operative and The Chairman and taken their place.
    • While the familial relationship between Tachyon and her nemesis The Matriarch had been known via Word of God for some time, their nemesis dialog is the first place it was confirmed within the game itself that they were cousins.
    • The video game's bios also confirmed that Freedom 6 Unity was a separate entity from the original Unity, who died of her wounds from Iron Legacy's attack in that timeline, while the original promo bio left it ambiguous.

  • The stage versions of Disney's animated features can be up to an hour longer than their source material, almost entirely through adding new songs. Characters who did not sing in the movie get songs, sometimes more than one; characters who did sing... sing even more. For instance, Gaston bribing the asylum keeper in Beauty and the Beast? That's the basis for a song. Eric dancing with Ariel in The Little Mermaid? That's the basis for a song. Many existing songs also have new lyrics added.
    • The stage musical of Aladdin includes brand new songs alongside the previously Cut Songs "Why Me", "Proud of Your Boy", "Babkak, Omar, Aladdin, Kassim", and "High Adventure" — and the formerly-deleted characters who sing the latter two.
    • The Little Mermaid's stage adaptation elaborates on Triton's and Ursula's backstories, especially in the revised production with the latter's new Villain Song "Daddy's Little Angel"; Eric's royal heritage, conflict of interests between exploring the seas and inheriting the throne, and obsession with Ariel following his rescue, the latter told in "Her Voice"; Ariel's relationship with her father and sisters; and her identity crisis as a mermaid, first touched on in her introductory number "The World Above". Alongside Eric's aforementioned "One Step Closer", the Mersisters and Flounder get a Song in the Limelight titled "She's in Love" upon observing Ariel's lovesickness for Eric; and Scuttle and his fellow seagulls have the tapdance number "Positoovity" as they coach Human!Ariel with walking on her new legs.
    • Frozen's stage adaptation focuses on Anna and Elsa's childhood a bit longer than the film, with their parents playing much more prominent roles in the prologue. Queen Iduna is given a brief backstory as having come from the Hidden Folk, who replace the trolls. Kristoff goes from having one song in the original movie ("Reindeers are Better than People") to six songs (the new ones being "What Do You Know about Love", "Hygge," "When Everything Falls Apart," "Kristoff Lullaby" and "Colder By the Minute"). Elsa gets several more solo songs ("Monster" and "Dangerous to Dream") highlighting her internal conflicts. Oaken is still a One-Scene Wonder, but his scene is now a Song in the Limelight called "Hygge".
  • Two for the Seesaw had a cast of two and required no more than two apartment settings on either side of a split stage. When it was adapted into the musical Seesaw, half a dozen minor characters and many additional settings were added. The result was not a hit.
  • Choreographer Jerome Robbins and composer Leonard Bernstein created a 20-minute ballet called Fancy Free, and used it as the basis for their first Broadway musical, On the Town. The adaptation was loose enough that no music was recycled.
  • Most of the second act of The Nutcracker is original to Tchaikovsky.
  • All of the Gilbert and Sullivan works are expansions on short stories, poems, and other of W. S. Gilbert's writings. Of these, the poems ("The Bab Ballads") have also remained fairly popular, especially in Britain, but copyright claims by the magazines he published meant his only attempt to publish a collection of stories ended up getting pulled from the market.
  • The Musical of Vanities added a Distant Finale where the characters reunite in their home town in The '80s, remedying the rather anticlimactic (and rather unhappy) ending of the original. Also, in the off-Broadway production, the story is told from a How We Got Here point of view, rather than directly following the girls through the ages.
  • Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street follows the Christopher Bond version of the Demon Barber, giving him realistic motives instead of just being a one-dimensional bad guy.
  • When Shakespeare turned Thomas Lodge's novella Rosalynde into the play As You Like It, he added several characters of his own (most notably Jaques, Touchstone and Audrey) and had them recur frequently as comedy relief.
  • The various stage adaptations of Chess all expand upon the Concept Album. Some additions that are particularly notable:
    • The original London production gave the chess players names, introduced characters like CIA agent Walter, and added songs like "Interview" and "The Soviet Machine".
    • The original Broadway production added lots of dialogue scenes and songs like "How Many Women" and "Someone Else's Story".
    • The original Swedish production gave a new song to Svetlana and recycled a cut melody to give to Molokov.
  • The 2013 West End musical Charlie and the Chocolate Factory is faithful to the novel but finds its own way to make Charlie a more proactive protagonist (see Film above) by expanding on both his character and Willy Wonka's. Charlie becomes a Cheerful Child and budding inventor who is in absolute awe of Mr. Wonka and his creations in a way the other four Golden Ticket finders are not. Mr. Wonka turns out to be a Mad Artist as well as a Mad Scientist. Charlie not only has to stay out of trouble but prove that he is a kindred creative spirit to find his happy ending. Finally, it turns out that Mr. Wonka is secretly on Charlie's side all along. Several supporting characters are rounded out as well, with Charlie's family and Mrs. Teavee becoming Ascended Extras.
  • The stage show of Jingle Bells, Batman Smells, P.S.: So Does May from the Junie B. Jones books includes material from Shipwrecked! presented in flashback form. It also includes a few other small additional scenes, such as a fantasy sequence of Junie B. imagining herself unwrapping and squeezing a giant a Squeez-a-Burp as her classmates and Mr. Scary cheer her on and Also sprach Zarathustra plays.
  • Shrek: The Musical uses an extra half-hour that the film doesn't have to elaborate on the backstories of Shrek, Fiona, and Farquaad, as well as give more focus to the Fairytale Creatures as characters (especially Pinocchio).
  • An American in Paris considerably expands upon the plot of the film, particularly where Lise is concerned.
  • The stage version of Anastasia uses the extra time of a stage show to fill in aspects of plot and character. In particular, Dmitry and Vlad's pasts are more fully fleshed out, and the context of the Russian Revolution and its aftermath become integral to the plot, rather than incidental or glossed over.
  • Hadestown was, from the start, a more fleshed out version of the Orpheus and Eurydice myth, with additional anti-capitalist themes. The stage musical was originally a very abstract, sparse experience with relatively little in the way of explicit story — it was after the release of the album that Mitchell began to flesh out the story with more songs ("Road to Hell" and "Chant" and their reprises most notably) to make the setting and the nature of events much clearer. One of the biggest changes made to the production when it came to Broadway was the idea of the seasons being thrown out of whack by Hades and Persephone's deteriorating marriage and Orpheus' quest to write a song to bring back spring, which was present to an extent in the 2017 version but not made as clear or as important.
  • The Caucasian Chalk Circle by Bertolt Brecht is an expansion of a short story he'd written several years earlier. The play mostly follows the outline of the short story, adding flesh to the bones, but one significant expansion is in the role of the judge who settles the dispute at the end: the short story has a straightforward wise judge character who is replaced in the play by a complicated trickster, one of the play's most memorable characters, with a character arc and a backstory that takes an entire act to unfold.
  • The 1774 version of Orfeo ed Euridice, rewritten for the French stage, included extra songs and the famous Dance of the Spirits ballet sequence in Elysium, extending the length of the opera significantly.
  • Virgil's account of the Orpheus and Eurydice myth was fairly short, started with Orpheus and Eurydice already in love, and only had Persephone hear Orpheus out. In the play Orpheus: A Poetic Drama, Hades appears alongside Persephone, how Orpheus and Eurydice met is explored, and focus is given to how Hades runs his Underworld and why he sees Orpheus's intrusion as dangerous.
  • Orpheus in the Underworld, besides adding a lot more gods than the usual take on the myth, had a revision made in 1874 expanded the two-act opera to four, with additional revisions adding optional scenes in Neptune's underwater kingdom.

    Theme Parks 

    Video Games 
  • I Have No Mouth, and I Must Scream:
    • The Adventure Game of "I Have No Mouth, and I Must Scream", which was written by the original author, Harlan Ellison, gave each of the five protagonists extensive backstories. This included Nimdok, who in the short story, never even revealed his real name. (He still doesn't, incidentally.) The player also has the chance to improve on the Downer Ending of the original story by guiding the protagonists through specific tests set up by the evil computer.
    • During development, the game's designer asked Ellison why this evil A.I. would choose those five particular characters to torture. The question fired Ellison's imagination and thus the characters received more development in the game.
  • Final Fantasy:
    • The backstory of the original Final Fantasy is heavily expanded on to tie into the backstory of Dissidia Final Fantasy, to the point that Dissidia almost gives more plot for the first game than the first game itself did.
    • Final Fantasy was hit with this a second time with the release of Stranger of Paradise: Final Fantasy Origin, billed as a (possible) prequel to the 1987 game. Specifically, it's a Protagonist Journey to Villain story for Garland himself that completely recontextualizes the Stable Time Loop at the center of FFI as a deliberate gambit by Garland and the Four Fiends (with the help of Astos) to bring about the true Warriors of Light in order to free Cornelia from the machinations of the Lufenians (who are depicted similar to how they're described in Dissidia: a technologically advanced, trans-dimensional civilization). The first DLC, Trials of the Dragon King, similarly expands upon Bahamut's role by revealing he's not even native to that world, implying he's a revived and reformed version of the Bahamut from Final Fantasy XV, and having him strike a deal with Garland to empower the Warriors of Light so that they might stand a chance against him in their fateful battle at the Chaos Shrine.
    • ROM hack example: Return of the Dark Sorcerer contains an optional extended intro that expands on the backstory of the mission to locate and seize the frozen Esper during the prologue of the original Final Fantasy VI as well as additional pieces of dialogue in existing scenes to better flesh out some things that were Lost in Translation.
    • The remake project of Final Fantasy VII takes this to an extreme, adapting what is already a long JRPG into a trilogy of JRPGs. Remake is longer than the entire original game, yet it only adapts one-eighth of the original's story.
  • Bondee's Barnyard: Safety Violation: The game is an expansion of the between night cutscenes of Five Nights at Freddy's 2, with where the player character is sitting on the stage trapped inside an animatronic, only capable moving back and forth.
  • S.T.A.L.K.E.R. is a large, 20+ hour computer game loosely based around the movie by the same name, a 163-minute minimalistic presentation emphasizing long takes and simple scenes, which was itself based around a short novel called Roadside Picnic. C-consciousness, the various factions, and the like exist to pad the story in the video game.
  • FusionFall Legacy, being a reimaging of the original MMO, expands upon it in many ways:
    • The time travel accident that strands the player in the future was just another one of Dexter's experiments ruined by Dee Dee in the original. The Legacy intro portrays it as a full-blown public event.
    • Several nanos are being added to the game.
  • Video games based on movies, especially in recent years, will inevitably end up doing this if they don't want their game to be shorter than the movie.
    • Madagascar: To allow for more levels, the game goes into detail about events the movie glossed over (Marty's escape from the zoo and Marty's quest to find Alex after he goes feral) and also adds in some new story elements (how the New Yorkers helped the lemurs set up their party, Marty, Gloria and Melman finding objects to reconstruct the liberty statue) in the process.
    • The video game for Kung Fu Panda adds in a ton of levels involving fighting various factions that have randomly chosen to attack rather than train.
    • This tradition goes all the way back to the good ole days, where the hero from a movie (whether or not the movie is based on existing material) will usually have to fight a bunch of henchmen or even freakish oddities that not only didn't appear in the film, but would have no place in it. There are many examples with the Back to the Future NES games probably being the most egregious.
  • Games based on superheroes will often try to make the playing field more even, so a character possessing titanic strength in the comics will be just somewhat stronger than a regular guy (e.g. Superman and Batman) and some characters will be possessed of powers that just never existed in the comics, usually including attacks that clear the screen of all the bad guys.
  • Games based on The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings films carry over the likenesses of the characters established in the films, continuing to run with the additional details not found in the books.
  • Fist of the North Star video game adaptations:
    • Fist of the North Star: Ken's Rage featured new moves for every character so they'd have an expanded move list. All moves were created by the artist of the original manga, Tetsuo Hara, so this actually means that not only are said moves canon, they also show what many characters that didn't get a chance to really showcase themselves were capable off. This is especially welcome with the Nanto characters, like Shin and Souther. Also many events in the original manga extended (such as battles with major bosses like Heart) or had new scenarios added in (for example the battle with Zeed were only several pages in the manga and the entire gang was massacred in one location while Ken's Rage features a true raid where Zeed thugs were found in every corner looting and murder).
    • There was a console RPG adaptation of Fist of the North Star titled Hokuto no Ken 3 (since it was the third game based on the series on the Famicom) that adapted the storyline of the entire manga (up to the Kaioh arc at least). The game ended up having a sequel titled Hokuto no Ken 4 that featured a new storyline set several years later that revolved around the next Hokuto Shinken successor.
  • Magic Knight Rayearth game adaptations adds much new lore to the existing Mythos wherein the original manga was only 6 volumes with events jumping immediately to another. For example the Sega Saturn game adds in so many characters, new locations (including towns which strangely were absent from the source material), and many side stories thrown. The SNES games, while mostly sticking with the manga's plot, also adds new towns, expands upon the locations visited in the manga (adding new events, larger dungeons, etc) and most notably gives the Magic Knights many new spells that never existed in any other incarnation of the story.
  • The majority of The Warriors serves as a prequel to the movie, explaining the characters' backstories. The final missions have the players play through the events of the film, plus an extra epilogue.
  • The Sega CD version of Snatcher features an extended opening sequence that adapts the prologue comic from the manual, which depicts Gillian and Jaime's last conversation before Gillian begins his first night as a JUNKER agent. It also features an ending that reveals what happened to Mika and Katrina before Gillian leaves to destroy the Snatchers' main base in Russia.
  • The Turok franchise. In the original comics, a pair of Indians get stuck in a valley full of dinosaurs... and that's it. In the video games, "Turok" is a title given to the eldest child in the Fireseed family, assigned to protect the portal between Earth and another dimension where "time has no meaning". Tal'Set Fireseed (Turok: Dinosaur Hunter), Joshua Fireseed (Turok 2: Seeds of Evil), and Danielle/Joshua Fireseed (Turok 3: Shadows of Oblivion) take up the mantle and venture to the Lost Lands, stopping Omnicidal Maniacs from taking it over and hunting down the bio-mechanical dinosaurs, demons and aliens that have spilled through into our world. Read that over and look at how we got from "two Indians in prehistoric valley" to that video game plot.
  • The Godfather: The Game expands on some parts the movie skims over. For example, in the movie, Bruno Tattaglia's whacking is given just an offhand mention. It gets expanded into a plotline mission in the game.
  • Super Robot Wars occasionally does this, particularly characters who are Spared by the Adaptation, be they heroic or villainous, such as Master Asia in Super Robot Wars Reversal, Fonse Kagatie in Shin Super Robot Wars, Tekkaman Rapier and Jonathan Glenn in Super Robot Wars Judgment.
    • One of the more prominent examples is a manga for Super Robot Wars Alpha Gaiden, which involves Time Travel. The story showcases what happens during the timespan between the first game and Alpha Gaiden (which is only referred in one or two lines in the game), some background on the Machinery Children, expansions on battles and what exactly happened to the cast from Alpha that is left behind by those who are transported to the Bad Future.
    • Super Robot Wars: Original Generation will generally expand on the cast by giving them more detailed origins. In Alpha 2, Ibis Douglas' past is hinted at, but never explained in detail. Original Generation 2 showcases her beginnings as a rookie pilot who dreams of heading off into space and being chosen for Project Terrestrial Dream. Often, Adaptation Distillation is also in the works: while her story from Alpha 2 is repeated in the Second Original Generation, it's executed differently - Ibis does not accidentally kill her mentor in a freak training accident; he dies off-screen from illness.
  • The Star Wars: Battlefront games add battles that were implied or logical extensions of the films, such as the theft of the Death Star plans and the liberation of Cloud City.
  • Spider-Man 2 is based upon the movie, but adds loads of characters and villains that would never have made it into the film due to time (e.g. Black Cat, Shocker, Rhino). Fans liked it. The first installment did this as well, probably the most noteworthy was that the burglar who shot uncle Ben turned out the be the gang leader of a gang called the Skulls so you had to go and beat them up first before you could find out where the shooter was.
    • The game of Spider-Man 3 continues the tradition: as well as the New Goblin, Sandman and Venom from the movie, the game introduces villains such as Lizard, Kingpin, and Kraven.
  • LEGO Adaptation Game:
    • All of the games like to do this, most of them taking 3-4 movies totalling around 8 hours of content and turning them into 10-20 hours of gameplay, but some of them like The LEGO Movie Videogame or LEGO The Incredibles take 1-2 film totalling 2-4 hours and lengthen them to have the same amount of content, to the point there's pretty much more original content than adapted source material.
    • LEGO Star Wars: The Force Awakens not only takes what is around a 2-hour movie and turns it into 15 hours worth of gameplay and cutscenes, but it also has bonus levels bridging Return of the Jedi to the new movie, filling in some details about what happened between the two films.
  • In GoldenEye (1997), several levels take place in the nine-year gap between the opening sequence and the proper beginning of the film. This includes Bond visiting a nuclear silo (and seeing Ouromov) and visiting the incomplete Severnaya bunker. Later on, near the end of the game, Bond also pursues Alec Trevelyan through a series of flooded caverns as the villain runs towards the control centre antenna.
  • In the N64 adaptation of The World Is Not Enough, there was a subway sequence with a bomb threat that was not featured in the film (set between the boat chase and "Cigar Girl"'s suicide), among other additions, such as getting a full chase level out of a scene that lasts ten seconds in the movie.
  • Like the film, the video game of The Haunted Mansion had to build a brand new backstory for the mansion, including a backstory for Madame Leota.
  • In The Lord of the Rings Online Turbine has been forced to do this in order to make an MMO out of Tolkien's work. More specifically it gives more back story to the events taking place outside of The Fellowship's journey. Most of these take place immediately before and during the events depicted in The Lord of the Rings, but they occasionally give flashbacks taking place well before.
    • An SNES version of Lord of the Rings had lots of this as well, but done very poorly. First you had to assemble the party of four Hobbits (Pippin and Merrin separate), and find old Gaffer's glasses in a cave west of the Shire, otherwise Samgee wouldn't join. Then several hours later, you had to find 12 talismans otherwise you couldn't get through some tombs that were never in the book...
    • This was such a factor in Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor and its sequel that many diehard Tolkien fans dropped it despite the popularity of the games. Notable points of contension include the use of previously unseen wildlife, the alternate timeline of Minas Ithal falling after the death of Helm Hammerhand instead of well before, and the identity of a few ringwraiths notably Isildur, who is supplanted by Talion himself before the War of the Ring, and the two ringwraith "sisters" seen in the Blade of Galadriel DLC.
  • The console ports of Return to Castle Wolfenstein have a prologue mission set in Egypt, not found in the PC version.
  • The SNES port of Prince of Persia added many new levels and traps, as well as boss battles.
  • The PS2 version of Splinter Cell has an additional mission at a nuclear power plant, to make up for the system's graphical limitations. This causes a minor plot hole in the other versions, which still act as though the mission happened, leaving players confused about some "missing Americium-239" Lambert freaks out over.
  • Iron Tank, the NES adaptation of SNK's TNK III, was greatly expanded from its arcade counterpart, with branching paths, bosses, new enemies and weapons, and a "Blind Idiot" Translation ("Watch out, use radar, gigantic enemy objects up ahead!"). In fact, most NES adaptations of arcade games did this, making up for the severe technical shortcomings of the time with additional content. Sometimes they ended up being completely different from their predecessors, and sometimes even surpassed the original in gamers' memories (Bionic Commando (1988), Ninja Gaiden, and Rygar being prime examples of the latter).
  • The Pitfall! arcade game, strangely enough produced by Sega, featured enhanced versions of the overworld of the first Pitfall and the underworld of the second, and added Minecart Madness and Temple of Doom stages. The Atari 800 computer version of Pitfall II was also expanded.
  • Areas 4 and 8 in the SMS version of Wonder Boy are exclusive to that version, and feature entirely new environments and enemies. The boss levels of each are set in the skies, and feature tougher bosses that throw lightning and have different theme music than the rest. The sequel's SMS port also have an extra stage set in a Ghost Town.
  • The PC Engine CD version of Raiden, in addition to the obligatory Redbook music, had two additional levels with their own music pieces. Much later, the Xbox 360 port of Raiden IV also had two exclusive stages, somewhat alleviating the short length of the original arcade game.
  • Debatable with Parasite Eve; it is an adaptation of a franchise that started out as a movie and a novel, but at the same time, acts more as a sequel/continuation of the original story where it happens in a new location, this time New York.
  • realMyst adds a new Age to the original Myst, plus additional backstory tying it into the wider story of Atrus's family and people.
  • Hudson Soft's Challenger for the Famicom took most of the gameplay and the English title of Stop The Express and made them the first stage of an otherwise original Action-Adventure game.
  • The SNES port of Sonic Blast Man is a standard Beat 'em Up in which the bonus game in between levels is the actual arcade game, with a much lower chance of injuring yourself.
  • Rockman 4 Minus ∞ is a ROM Hack of Mega Man 4. It still has the same plot as the original, but the levels have been expanded, there are new minibosses and the powers obtained from the Robot Masters have changed.
  • Puella Magi Madoka Magica Portable is designed with multiple routes diverging from how the story originally unfolded. It also depicts the Witch forms of Mami, Kyoko, and Homura.
  • Despite being based on three movies in total, The Matrix: Path of Neo still manages to add in more material for the game. Examples include more detail going into Neo's training, Neo being trapped on a stray code resembling a subway and facing down a SWAT team right after the famous one-on-one fight with Agent Smith, and Neo rescuing more inhabitants of the Matrix in between the events of the first and second films.
    • There is also a minor branching path in that you can choose to follow Morpheus' instructions to escape the agents by climbing outside of Neo's workplace building.
  • The Sega Genesis version of Wardner, titled Wardner no Mori SPECIAL in Japan, expands Stage 4 and divides it in half, and lengthens the final stage with a Boss Rush and several vertical shafts.
  • The NES version of Willow takes the basic plot of the film, adds new detail to existing locations, and adds a number of villages, items, monsters, dungeons, and characters, introducing the village of Dew, the Eagle Clan, the dragons Po and Matanda, and Kchil of the Nail Clan. Bavmorda is the messenger of the Spirit of the Skies, and Fin Raziel is the messenger of the Spirit of the Earth.
  • The NES port of Contra expanded the fifth and final level of the Arcade Game into a four-level sequence. Some of the previous levels were also lengthened. Super C was more drastic, replacing the arcade's fourth stage with four completely new levels, as well as changing the order of or replacing certain bosses.
  • King's Quest II was mainly a Fantasy Kitchen Sink mishmash of unrelated elements, making the plot feel very much like an Excuse Plot. The Fan Remake by AGD Interactive, on the other hand, added to Kolyma's lore and tied most of the characters and places together, such as making the witch Hagitha the Big Bad of the game (though she still works under the Greater-Scope Villain of the remake trilogy, The Father,) and making Dracula Count Caldaur, the ruler of Kolyma who mysteriously vanished years ago.
  • Donkey Kong '94 is this to the original arcade game. In fact, the first four levels of '94 are lifted directly from the 1981 original, giving players the impression that '94 is nothing more than an Updated Re-release until DK steals away Pauline again and it's revealed there are still another 97 levels left to complete.
  • Several Bleach games gave some characters all new powers to account for them not being actually introduced in the manga yet. This includes Kyoraku getting wind powers, Ukitake using water and electricity, and Harribel shooting Sword Beams of all shapes and sizes.
  • Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm 3 massively expanded on several fights from the source material, such as the efforts to subdue the Nine-Tails on Naruto's birthday, Kakashi's fight against the Seven Swordsmen of the Mist (which as mentioned above was also adapted to the anime) and the five Kage versus Edo Madara fight, an Offscreen Moment of Awesome that had yet to be shown period.
  • Marvel Future Fight is more or less an adaptation of Jonathan Hickman's Avengers Saga, but with content from the Marvel Cinematic Universe, while expanding out some of the alternate universes from the incursions and including significantly more comic characters.
  • Total War: Warhammer:
    • A couple of the game’s legendary lords (army generals and faction leaders representing specific characters), such as Helman Ghorst and Duke Alberic of Bordelaux, have only a couple paragraphs of description in the tabletop lore, but in the video game become much more developed characters, with their own unique items, abilities and quest battle chains.
    • In order to make up for Bretonnia's somewhat limited unit choice in the tabletop material, CA ended up flat-out inventing a number of units, such as footsquires, holy water trebuchets and hippogriff knights, to fill out its roster and make it more competitively viable.
    • The Lizardmen get several new units, including Feral Cold Ones (a pack of Cold Ones, a type of raptor-like dinosaurs normally used by the Lizardmen as cavalry) and likewise "feral" variants of the other dinosaur mounts as one-model monster units, with the reasoning being that giving the Lizardmen more dinosaur units would make playing as them more fun. There is also a Bastiladon variant with a Revivification Crystal, included to give the Lizardmen more options for healing and buffing.
    • Norsca. In the tabletop game, Norsca never had its own army book and had little presence outside of the background lore — its only presence in the game proper were some units in the Warriors of Chaos army. In Total War: Warhammer, it becomes a fully playable, independent faction separate from the Chaos Warriors, with its own separate gameplay mechanics and unit choices, many of which were created for the game.
    • The Tomb Kings, upon their debut in Total War: Warhammer II, received several new units, namely Nehekhara Swordsmen (to address their lack of mid-tier infantry) and Nehekhara Riders (to address the same concern, but this time for cavalry). Additionally, the Hierotitan finally received a model and is one of their special construct units.
    • The Vampire Coast is the second game's version of Norsca, being relegated to some fluff and a few Vampire Count units in the tabletop game. Here, they receive an entire roster, with four legendary lords — two taken from Dreadfleet, while one was created for the game.
    • The Daemons of Chaos were a single army in the tabletop, but here, they're four different armies, with each incorporating units that normally belong to the Warriors of Chaos.
    • Kislev is Total War: Warhammer III's version of Norsca and the Vampire Coast — only mentioned in the tabletop game, they're a full faction here, complete with Legendary Lords (one a Canon Foreigner), new units, and a new Lore of Magic.
    • The Empire of Grand Cathay from the third game. In the thirty years since Warhammer started, Cathay has never been portrayed on the tabletop, meaning quite literally everything in their roster had to be created wholesale for this game.
  • One of the more notable and well-received features in SPV3, a Custom Campaign that serves as a re-imagining of the original Halo: Combat Evolved campaign, is the addition of level extensions to the missions The Pillar of Autumn, Halo, Assault on the Control Room, Two Betrayals and The Maw. These extensions have revitalized many of the level layouts that dedicated fans have become familiar levels. Many fans have stated that because of how well these extensions flow with the existing level layouts, they could easily be mistaken as part of the original level design.
  • Heroes of Jin Yong, a game based on the works of Jin Yong, has a 2022 remake that expands greatly on the original, to the point where the game is now thrice as long. In comparison, the 1996 version mostly focuses on seven of Jin Yong's iconic novels note , the remake on the other hand amalgamates almost all of Jin Yong's works, with at least 21 novels included.
  • Pokémon remakes all tend to do this to some degree.
    • FireRed and LeafGreen adds the Fame Checker, an item that stores various trivia about sixteen of the game's most important NPCs. Most importantly, there's a whole new area called the Sevii Islands, where a lot of the newer Pokémon are located, and is host to an extended postgame where the player has to disband a branch of Team Rocket that is unaware of Giovanni ending Team Rocket's current operations.
    • HeartGold and SoulSilver elevates the Kimono Girls to plot relevance, with their roles bolstered to have their presence needed for meeting their respective versions' mascot legendaries. The game also introduces the Pokéathalon, restores certain areas that were cut down or removed in the original like Viridian Forest, and expands upon Crystal's Suicune subplot.
    • Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire greatly expands upon Teams Magma and Aqua, giving the admins and leaders more distinct personalities when they were nearly identical in the originals. There's also more backstory given on the Abandoned Ship, and the postgame Delta Episode actually goes out of its way to expand upon and explain the series' timeline and universe.
  • Fire Emblem Gaiden received this with its 2017 remake, Echoes: Shadows of Valentia. More specifically:
    • In the general, the vast majority of the original's characters have far more presence, whether it be through more presence in the main game, base/village conversations, or the series' now-standard Support Conversations. There are also a few new characters, and Memory Prisms allow the player to view flashbacks expanding on various new and old characters' backstories.
    • Exposition given both late in the main story and via DLC flashbacks clears up the matter of Alm obtaining the Falchion at Duma Temple when the sword would logically be in Marth's possession (and, later, passed down among his lineage) by explaining the Valentian Falchion to be a separate weapon from its Archanean counterpart, forged by Naga from another one of her fangs (and presumably long before the events of the Archanean games) as a countermeasure should Mila or her brother Duma — established in the remake as fellow members of the Divine Dragon Tribe — ever fall prey to the degeneration all dragons are susceptible to, thereby providing stronger links between the first three games of the series.
    • The postgame dungeon, Thabes Labyrinth, ended up giving a full backstory to Grima, the Big Bad of Awakening, revealing him and the Risen to have been created by the forbidden experiments of a "demon alchemist" named Forneus. In response, the Thabean Council sealed away Forneus and his creations in the confines of his workshop, and the player can confront a younger, weaker version of the Fell Dragon at the very bottom of the labyrinth. (This also implies Alm and Celica may have inadvertently released Grima onto the world by removing the seal on Forneus' workshop. Whoops.) Thabes itself originally only had an offhand mention in Mystery of the Emblem, described as an ancient civilization residing in the Mamorthod Desert.
  • The Legend of Zelda:
    • The 3DS remake of The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask adds tons of previously-absent details to certain shops and buildings, such as the Bomb Shop Owner's single note about bomb-powered moon travel being expanded to multiple rocket sketches littering the entire store, or the house at Romani Ranch now having UFO pictures hanging on the walls to foreshadow the arrival of "Them".
    • The Switch remake of The Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening fleshes out the minigames that were minor parts of the original game, including the Trendy Game (now a full physics-based claw game), the fishing spot (more fish to catch and multiple lures), and the raft-riding game (which now uses the Hookshot and has an additional time trial mode). They also provide more rewards.
  • Dragon Quest:
    • Dragon Quest IV: Aamon is given more development in the remake, which adds a new chapter to firmly establish he was behind Rose's murder and Psaro's descent into madness.
    • Dragon Quest V:
      • Bishop Ladja gets considerably more screentime and involvement in the plot in The Remake than in the original. To elaborate, he's the one who petrifies you and your wife instead of Kon (as a last-ditch effort before kicking the bucket). Also, instead of being killed in Talon Tower as in the original, he survives to personally execute King Korol for his failure to defeat the party and ends up being fought at the entrance to The Very Definitely Final Dungeon.
      • Party chat will also flesh out your human party members since all of them will have something to say nearly every time you talk to someone, visit somewhere, or after an event.
    • Dragon Quest Builders 2:
      • The game is pretty much "Adaptation Expansion For Dragon Quest II: The Game" and expands especially on Malroth and the nature of the Children of Hargon enormously.
      • In the original game, Hargon and his minions had absolutely no motivation for being opponents beyond "we're the villains"; here, the nature of their Religion of Evil is expanded on tremendously and it deals with the way monsters in general tend to see themselves and their place in the world (and how Hargon exploited that).
      • Similarly, Malroth in the original game had basically no characterization whatsoever, being basically just being a big scary demon for you to fight at the end of the game since Dragon Quest had established the tradition of needing a bigger foe at the end; in the original game, and especially original English release, Malroth was barely even mentioned prior to his appearance. Here, the Malroth you meet at the start is a Jerk with a Heart of Gold who gradually becomes friends with the Builder, and exactly what the Master of Destruction is, and what his relationship with the idea of Creation (as personified by the Builders) is a central theme of the game. Malhalla and the final sequences of the game in general also up his Villain Pedigree tremendously. In the original game, he was one of Toriyama's far less inspired designs and wasn't terribly threatening (looking more like a low-tier Dragon Ball villain than anything); the Malhalla sequence repackages God!Malroth as a deific Reality Warper whose limbs can manifest out of nowhere and gouge out massive chunks of terrain, can manifest black holes which visibly suck blocks away into nothing, who can get big enough that his sheddings can be used as building materials, who can spawn "shadow fiend" versions of monsters that are pure automatons of Destruction and his proper god form is way more threatening than it ever was in DQII.
      • As a side note: the game takes that whole "Malroth is barely mentioned" thing from DQII and actually makes it a plot point. It comes up that barely any members of the Children of Hargon actually know the "holy name" of the Master of Destruction, which is why the various members of the Children you meet don't take much note of Malroth at first. Pastor Al is clearly starting to wonder about him toward the end of Furrowfield, and the King of Moonbrooke similarly seems to have some suspicions; it's the high-up members you meet in Malhalla who actually know who Malroth might be, and by that time, you're trying desperately to find him.
      • Even Hargon gets a bit of this, despite being seemingly dead thanks to the events of DQII. It turns out the illusory Midenhall was a lot more than the Scions of Erdrick ever realized, and it's part of Hargon's Batman Gambit to cheat death if defeated; he essentially re-created himself and a whole little world outside of the castle area by using the Creation side of the duality that Malroth's power represents. While it's essentially illusory and will fade in time without extraordinary intervention, it would still give Hargon just enough time to re-empower Malroth and have him shed any remaining shreds of mortal attachment he might have, turning Malroth into a true avatar of pure Destruction. He did not, however, reckon on the attachment Human!Malroth would form with the Builder, despite wanting a Builder in the illusion to draw out Malroth's urges toward Destruction.
  • Mario Kart 8 keeps the series tradition of bringing back tracks from previous games remade with newer graphics. But whereas previous games tried to recreate those retro tracks in every detail, Mario Kart 8 takes many creative liberties, adding plenty of graphical details that weren't in the originals, as well as changing the layouts and gameplay elements to accommodate for the newer mechanics. The tracks that got the most changes were ones taken from the SNES and GBA games, as those games were 2D but used Mode 7 to simulate 3D at the cost of requiring completely flat terrain, so the remakes would ditch the flat terrains in exchange for more ups and downs. The tracks Cheese Land and Ribbon Road look almost nothing like the originals even if you compare them side to side. Here's a comparison of all the tracks.
  • The PC Engine CD version of Emerald Dragon added in some story details and extra sections that weren't in the PC version. These changed mostly carried over to the SNES version.
  • Hearts of Iron:
    • The mod Hearts of Iron: 1984 uses Hearts of Iron's engine to simulate a world war based on Nineteen Eighty-Four. Since every country is playable yet the original material has a very limited scope (Nineteen Eighty-Four is entirely told from the perspective of a single character living in a specific part of Oceania), the modders imagined various details to fill the blanks:
    • There are counterparts to Big Brother for the other super-states. Eastasia is led by Immortal Father, who uses a portrait of Mao Zedong, while Eurasia is led by Mother Russia, who uses a portrait of Valentina Terechkova)
    • The "disputed zone" is split between five playable countries (Free Africa, Free Arabia, Free India, Free Indochina, and Free Indonesia), who all have their own leader.
    • To make the game more manageable by AI or human players, the mod features an alternate mode where each of the three super-states are split into five (technically independent) allied playable countries with their own borders, names, and flags. For instance, Oceania consists of Airstrip One (UK and Ireland), Thirteen Sectors (Eastern coast of USA and Canada, flyover states), Gran Pacifica (Western coast of USA and Canada, Texas, Central America), Gran Columbia (South America), and Frontier (South Africa, New Zealand, Australia).
  • Equestria at War fills in the blanks for the setting of My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic with three new continents (Equus, Griffonia, and Zebrica) worth of countries, cultures, religions, histories, and characters.
  • Frogger: The Great Quest: The PC version has an entire new level set between "Dark Trail Ruins" and "Starkenstein's Castle", simply called "The Dark Trail", where you have a boss that was not in the PlayStation 2 version.
  • The first Nancy Drew PC game were based on actual Nancy Drew books; the first five were adapted from the Spin-Off Nancy Drew Files series, with the next few coming from the primary Nancy Drew Mystery Stories. They drifted back and forth between the two series after that, including adapting both the very first book (The Secret of the Old Clock) and the most popular book (The Secret of Shadow Ranch.) Somewhere around The Legend of the Crystal Skull, they started writing their own stories.
  • The original Half-Life was the original Trope Namer for Disappointing Last Level (known then as Xen Syndrome), because the final levels in Xen were noted as being boring and lacking many of the puzzles that made the rest of the game interesting while providing nice breaks from combat. The Fan Remake, Black Mesa, took extreme pains to make the Xen chapters far more vibrant and interesting, adding in new maps and enemies while expanding on what was already present. At least one developer at Valve admitted to finding Black Mesa more fun than the original Half-Life, and Valve allowed the mod to be put up for sale by the Crowbar Collective with only two restrictions.
  • One Piece: Pirate Warriors adds more from its source material.
    • You actually get to fight Akainu as Luffy and kick his ass.
    • Also Whitebeard's use of Conqueror's Haki was an Informed Ability in the manga and anime, whereas he actually uses it in this game.
      • Taken even further in the fourth game, when the special system was changed to give every character a list of possible specials, from which they can use up to four at time. Now, every character confirmed to have Conqueror's Haki is capable of using it as a special, even characters who have yet to be shown using it.
    • Up until dishing a Curb-Stomp Battle against Kid, we've never seen Shanks properly fight in the manga or the anime. Thus to make him a playable character in 3 and 4 they had to come up with a moveset from the ground up, one involving liberal use of charging his weapons with Haki to mow down armies with lightning fast speed and literal lightning, courtesy of his well-developed Conquerer's Haki.
  • A Little Lily Princess is Romance Game based on A Little Princess. To allow all the routes to be a full story past the Point of No Return, each of them is a mix of material from the original novel and material that was to added flesh out each character in a way that is consistent with their portrayal in the novel. This is especially true for Alpha Bitch Lavinia, her best friend Jessie, and Mariette, whose permanent departure from the story is part of the Riches to Rags moment in the novel.
  • Toy Story 3: Several levels in the story mode are based on scenes that don't appear in the movie, such as a brand new Imagine Spot with Bonnie and an entire aside level where Rex plays the Buzz Lightyear game from the Fake-Out Opening of the second film (which itself also undergoes expansion from what we see in the film). And that's not even mentioning Haunted Bakery...
  • The SpongeBob Movie Game does a lot to stretch out the plot of the film, as scenes generally never stayed in one location for long.
    • There are entire levels based on the otherwise brief scenes of SpongeBob's dream at the beginning, the aftermath of SpongeBob and Patrick's ice cream bender at Goofy Goober, and the duo leaving Bikini Bottom in the Patty Wagon. SpongeBob and Patrick traveling through the desert after getting carjacked is two levels.
    • Plankton's mass mind control plot unfolds after the above instead of after SpongeBob and Patrick escape the Thug Tug. Both desert levels involve thwarting Plankton's attempts to lure more people to Bikini Bottom to build his army.
    • The scenes of SpongeBob and Patrick sneaking into the Thug Tug get their own level which greatly expands on the interior of the building, them escaping in the reclaimed Patty Wagon is another, and the frogfish is a proper boss fight.
    • The musical sequence in the trench is now three levels, one of which is another mission to stop Plankton's advertising, and a fight against Dennis, followed by an entirely new Dream Sequence level to represent what SpongeBob and Patrick dreamed about after being taken to Shell City.
    • The escape from Shell City itself is its own level, followed by another fight against Dennis, which is easily the least changed from the film.
    • Rather than getting launched directly into the Krusty Krab 2 at the climax, SpongeBob and Patrick have to fight through Planktopolis in one level, followed by one last vehicle level where the Patty Wagon is magically restored (after being eaten earlier) and a two-phase Final Boss fight against a Brainwashed King Neptune.
  • Darm in Ys II was very much a Flat Character, being little more than a mindless force of destruction. This is not the case in the prequel Ys Origin, however, as it actually elaborates on his backstory quite a bit.
  • Star Wars: Obi-Wan, released in 2001 for the Xbox, is set before and during the events of The Phantom Menace. In addition to beginning with various missions on Coruscant and other planets unrelated to the film, the game also includes a mission on Tatooine in which Obi-Wan has to rescue Queen Amidala from Tusken Raiders. (Note that he's actually rescuing her decoy, since Padme is safe with Qui-Gon.)

    Web Animation 
  • The classic Creepypasta "Genetic Memory" is written as a theory exposed to the reader. The illustrated version contained in this video adds a frame story and a Twist Ending.
  • FTL: Kestrel Adventures This whole series is based on a playthrough of the game. In episodes 18-21, the Kestrel ends up in Kaban the planet where the Rebellion was formed.

  • The original Final Fantasy is a game that's pretty short on story; most characters have no discernible personality and the overall plot is little more than a stream of Fetch Quests broken up by the occasional boss battle. 8-Bit Theater loosely adapts the plot of the game, but turns it into over 1200 strips. Consequently, characters who had maybe two to four textboxes of dialogue are now major recurring characters, the Light Warriors have any character at all, and the plot is a much more complex, with twists, characters, factions, and ideas that weren't even implied in the original, turning the rather generic D&D-esque storyline into a full-on Crapsack World.
  • To Prevent World Peace was originally intended as a short story about Magical Girl villains. It, er, blossomed out of control. At last count, the author planned for sixteen chapters and was thinking of creating other short stories around the same characters.
  • Knights of Buena Vista adds extra scenes to Frozen, such as a battle against pirates and Anna thwarting robbers on the street.
  • Five Kids at Freddy's expands on the story of the missing children incident hinted at in the original games. It is planned to follow all five kids trapped in the pizzeria, with the story stretched out over three days.
  • Erstwhile adapts lesser-known stories by The Brothers Grimm. Most just follow their version, with the occasional name or exposition thrown in; "Snow-White and Rose-Red," however, adds two new scenes to set up the Official Couples and ending better. (One where Snow White talks to the bear, and another when the girls go in town, see a poster about the missing prince and meet his brother.)
  • This fan comic retelling of Ib expands both the story and the characters some (e.g. letting Silent Protagonist Ib talk) so the story will flow better in its new medium.
  • NEXT!!! Sound of the Future is a Vocaloid fan comic. Vocaloids have almost zero canon personalities or backstories, making almost every world building and character detail completely original. The comic takes the basic concept of vocal synthesizer software with character images attached and turns them into full fledged sentient androids with fleshed out character arcs.

    Web Original 
  • angelarts' VA Let's Play Earthbound:
    • There are several scenes in the Let's Play that were not present in the original game. For example, at one point during Part 31, Ness receives a phone call from Giygas in the middle of the night, giving him an Implied Death Threat before hanging up.
    • If the Christmas Episode is to be believed, Giygas is explicitly stated to be the one possessing Claus in addition to having cybernetic enhancements to him. There is no indication of this happening in Claus' home series.
  • The original "noedoleckiN" concept was comprised of poorly-made logo edits created by younger creators. In The Noedolekcin Archives, the anomalies have actual backstory in the form of an otherworldly entity wreaking havoc at the hotels in Universal Orlando Resort.

    Western Animation 
  • Batman: The Brave and the Bold:
    • "Night of The Batmen!" is based on issue #13 of the show's tie-in comic. The writers had to add a lot of padding to stretch the story out into a 22-minute TV episode.
    • "The Super Batman of Planet X!" does this for the Batman of Zur-En-Arrh. In the comics, the only details revealed about him were that he was an alien scientist named Tlano who was inspired to become a superhero after observing Earth's Batman. The cartoon actually shows his personal life and gives him a love interest, supporting cast, and even an Arch-Enemy.
  • The cartoon adaptation of The Bear gives backstory as to how he ended up in the girl's town in the first place (followed a bird, got stuck on an ice flow and taken to a zoo by a cargo ship), along with sending him back to the Arctic at the end. It also gives him a reason for visiting the girl, to return the teddy bear she dropped. In the book, he just comes and goes from the house and there wasn't a sequence with a bear made out of stars.
  • How the Grinch Stole Christmas!. If you read the original book, you'll notice that it lacks Seuss's whimsical naming conventions. According to legend, he wrote it on a dare that he not use his signature made-up words. In the cartoon, with the bet no longer an issue, entire verses are added with the names in full effect.
  • The children's book The Little Engine That Could has had it done twice; once as a 30-minute movie in 1991, then as a full-length CGI film in 2011, with an All-Star Cast. The first was more true to the book than the second.
  • Fox's Peter Pan & the Pirates massively expanded on the mythos of Peter Pan. All the characters — Peter, Wendy, John, Michael, all the Lost Boys, Tinker Bell, Jane, Hook and all his pirates, the mermaids, Big Chief Little Panther and Tiger Lily — are all greatly fleshed out in terms of characterization, and all get a Day in the Limelight at one time or another, as well as some extra characters who were made up just for the show, like Hook's brother Captain Patch, Tiger Lily's brother Hard-To-Hit, the fairies and their King and Queen, and many others.
  • While the second Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles cartoon's adaptations of comic book stories are usually paced to correspond to their source material — one issue will almost always translate into one episode — two exceptions stand out. The first is the arc composed by the episodes "The Search for Splinter," "Turtles in Space," and "Secret Origins" multi-parters, which take five issues' worth of material and expands it into ten, while the second is its adaptation of "Sons of the Silent Age," which, after completing a mostly faithful adaptation of the comic book by the fifteen-minute mark, fills out the rest of the episode with a plot about preventing an uncared-for nuclear power plant from spilling radioactive material into the river which was the setting for the story.
  • The original ThunderCats cartoon had an open-ended conclusion that left us hanging on an epic battle between Lion-O and Mumm-Ra. However, Wildstorm made several faithful comics to profoundly extend and conclude the story — with a few non-canon adventure comics thrown in for good measure.
  • The classic Rankin/Bass Christmas specials based on preexisting songs and poems all feature this trope in spades:
    • Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer expands the plot from "a reindeer is bullied because of his shiny red nose, but then saves Christmas by guiding Santa's sleigh" to "a reindeer is bullied because of his shiny red nose, runs away from home, teams up with Hermey the dentist-elf and Yukon Cornelius, visits the Island of Misfit Toys, faces the Abominable Snow Monster, and then saves Christmas by guiding Santa's sleigh".
    • Frosty the Snowman expands the story beyond "Frosty is brought to life by a magic hat, plays with the kids, and then leaves" to include his special friendship with little girl Karen, their attempts to travel to the North Pole where Frosty will be safe from melting, the villainous magician Professor Hinkle who originally owned the magic hat and wants it back, Frosty's Disney Death when Hinkle locks him in a greenhouse to melt, and Santa Claus's saving the day in the end.
    • The original song of The Little Drummer Boy just has a poor boy visiting the baby Jesus, having no gift to give him, playing his drum for him instead, and the baby smiling at him. All the other details found in the special (the boy's name being Aaron, his parents' murder and his resulting misanthropy, the details of how he arrives at the manger, all the other characters' roles, etc.) are new.
    • The basic plot of the original The Year Without a Santa Claus poem is that Santa doesn't feel like delivering presents this year, the kids gets whiny about it, but one kid named Iggy Heppelwhite tells his classmates that Christmas is about giving, the kids take his word to heart and give presents to Santa, and that cheers him up and gets him to go on his annual trek. Rankin/Bass' version added in the subplots about people not caring about Christmas anymore, and Mrs. Claus sending elves Jingle and Jangle to look for Christmas cheer, and of course, the Miser Brothers. In fact, Iggy Thistlewhite is the only character in the special who originates from the poem (besides the standard Santa characters, of course).
  • The BBC's Christmas adaptations of Julia Donaldson picture books do this, mostly adding extra scenes which emphasise plot points (the carnivores exchanging notes and realising they were tricked in The Gruffalo) or character notes (establishing why all the animals would like to travel with the witch in Room on the Broom, and that the cat isn't keen on the idea), while leaving the actual story as it is.
  • The Toot & Puddle special I'll Be Home for Christmas is this of the original book, adding in a number of new subplots and other material to fill a 45 minute special.
  • The original six Madeline specials are highly extended versions of the Madeline books. The subsequent cartoon series, which ended up running four seasons, took the expansion further with new, original stories.
  • The Zipi y Zape 2003 animated series introduced some of Zipi and Zape's classmates that were never seen in the comics, such as Invi, Evilina or Wanda.
  • The Super Mario Bros. Super Show! and its sister cartoons had to take characters from the source material who really had nothing in the way of personality or development and write a show about them. Their characterization of Luigi being a Lovable Coward is also largely considered by fans to be the inspiration for Luigi's personality in newer games as well.
  • Tie-in SpacePOP books show how Geela took over, and mention that Tibbitt is a present from her late father. They also go into more detail about the princesses, Geela, Chamberlin, and their lives, as well as the episodes' content.
    • The cartoon expands on Juno's reality TV experiences, as well as adding a scene after an interview where Geela tries to arrest the princesses and the crowd helps them escape.
  • The Magic Pudding: Bunyip Bluegum's quest to find his parents was invented for the movie to provide the story with some structure; in the book he just sets out to see the world with no particular aim in mind.
  • The Animated Adaptation of The Duckling Gets a Cookie?! (a Pigeon Series book) from Scholastic and Weston Woods has an added scene at the end. In it, The Pigeon sees the Duckling with the second cookie, without nuts, that he got after asking politely for it. He gets angry that the Duckling got another cookie and thinks that the Duckling's cookie, without nuts, looks tastier than the one with nuts that the Duckling gave him.
  • Quite a bit of this happens across various episodes of Superbook (2011). Some examples:
    • The Bible generally portrays the rebellion in Heaven in only one short statement: "And there was war in Heaven: Michael and his angels fought against the dragon (Satan); and the dragon fought and his angels, and prevailed not."note  In the episode "In The Beginning", we get to see a short but action-packed portrayal of that battle, with Lucifer and Michael going for each other in the clash before Michael personally throws Lucifer out of Heaven (while paraphrasing Isaiah 14:12-15 for good measure).
    Michael: How you are fallen from Heaven, oh Lucifer, son of the morning. How you are cut down to the ground, you, who weaken the nations. Yet now you are brought down to the lowest depths of the pit.
    • In the Bible, the battle between David and Goliath is depicted as a Curb-Stomp Battle in David's favor when he knocks Goliath out with a stone to the head (and then cuts off the giant's head with his own sword). Here, in the episode "A Giant Adventure", the confrontation is drawn out a little with David having to dodge Goliath's attacks prior to slinging the stone. Additionally, the episode explicitly shows David's older brother Eliab as being ready to challenge the Philistines, only to immediately draw back when Goliath first appears (in the source material, while Eliab is part of the Israelite army, he's not specifically pointed out except for when he scolds David for being at the battlefield).
    • The first half of "Jesus Feeds the Hungry", which is about Jesus's miracle of turning water into wine at the wedding of Cana, tells the story from the viewpoint of the servants, who the kids and Gizmo are working with in the kitchen area (in the source material, the only time we hear about the servants is when Jesus gives them instructions for the miracle to happen). Prior to the discovery of the wine having run out, Chris learns about the local wedding culture from the son of the wedding's steward, while the steward and Gizmo discuss how to maximize the quality of the food while using smaller portion sizes per guest.
  • Stretch Armstrong and the Flex Fighters takes a well-known novelty toy with little worldbuilding to it and revamps it as a superhero animated series with its own supporting cast of allies and villains, a setting with its own lore, and major story arcs.
  • Green Eggs and Ham, the Netflix Animated Adaptation of Green Eggs and Ham book turns what was originally a simple misadventure wherein Sam-I-Am tries to get a grumpy guy to try the eponymous food(s) into a buddy comedy wherein Sam-I-Am and the grumpy guy must team up and go on an odyssey across a Seussian world to return a rare bird to its natural habitat, with many different parties out to stop them.
  • The Rotten Ralph animated specials The Taming of the Ralph (adapted from the first book) and Not-So-Rotten Ralph (adapted from the book of the same name) had more content added to the stories to fill out a half-hour running time, with the former including a conflict where Ralph is prevented from going home to his owner Sarah because the alley cats Fleabag and Lulu hold him prisoner and refuse to let him go until he helps them finish a song they are writing as well as the latter having Ralph's misbehavior escalate a bit before Sarah's family sends him to Mr. Fred's Finishing School.
  • Fangbone! expands greatly upon the content of the Fangbone! Third Grade Barbarian books, adding a much larger cast of characters and building upon the setting of Skullbania. Notably, Venomous Drool is actually a much more prominent character in the show than he was in the original books.
  • Thomas & Friends:
    • Series 1-2 and 4 (and half of 3) were based on the Railway Series books, but the other half of Series 3 and Series 5 onwards have been original. Ironically, not every story in the Railway Series has been adapted to television, but since the books and TV series are now completely different from each other there is little chance of these stories making it to the screen. However, Season 20 adapted the book Small Railway Engines. Yes, 25 years later, more stories were adapted.
    • In 2015, a special entitled The Adventure Begins was released, which retold the first two books but added slight additions: Specifically Thomas' first day on Sodor, Thomas getting his blue #1 paint job for the first time, the original #1 Glynn the Coffee Pot, Thomas helping Henry with his fear of rain, Annie and Clarabel originally being James' coaches before they were given to Thomas, and most notably an extra scene being added to the "Thomas and the Breakdown Train" chapter where Thomas tries to save James during his runaway before he derails.
  • Franklin did an entire season based almost entirely on material from Paulette Bourgeois and Brenda Clarks' original picture books, but then went on to air six seasons as well as a CGI spinoff of original material. The first two movies, however, were also based loosely on elements from the books, the first movie more than the second.
  • Hilda: The graphic novels that the show is based on contained only five books when the first season went into production, and the fifth had to be omitted due to ending on a cliffhanger that wouldn't be resolved for another few years. Meanwhile, the four books they did adapt only provided enough material for five episodes, so several new stories had to be created to get a complete 13-episode season.
  • Watership Down (1999): After the show runs out of source material from the novel at the end of season 2, it uses original storylines for its third season.
  • Mr. Benn: With one exception, the television series adapted all the original books, and even had a one-off revival to adapt a later novel. Later books, in fact, adapted episodes of the television series.

  • Merchandise-Driven works almost always are this. A cast and crew will, in a nutshell, be handed some toys and maybe a bit of a back story and told "advertise this". Other than that and some Executive Meddling along the way they're basically free to do whatever they want with it.
  • Works based on The Lord of the Rings add details not present in the books, including naming the unnamed Nazgul, adding new towns, expanding the world map, adding new characters or adding detail to minor characters to the point of becoming new characters.
  • The ad campaign Microsoft cooked up for Microsoft Office XP did this for Clippy, the Microsoft Office Assistant. Not only is he Suddenly Voiced, he also becomes an Adaptational Jerkass with a Dysfunctional Family and gets a story arc of dealing with his impending unemployment. Not bad for a digital assistant whose sole purpose was to guide users through Microsoft Office.


Video Example(s):

Alternative Title(s): Adaptational Expansion, Overtook The Series


James' Runaway and Crash

James is pushed by the Troublesome Trucks and cannot stop because of his wooden brake blocks which catch fire, and eventually crashes. Note that this is a new scene created for the runaway that features Thomas trying to save James before the crash.

How well does it match the trope?

5 (9 votes)

Example of:

Main / RunawayTrain

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