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Alternate Continuity

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Queen Serenity: Remember Fiore?
Sailor Moon: Yes! Yes I do! And I seem to be the only one who does!
Queen Serenity: Well you see, there's the series, and then there's the movies and the movies are a whole other continuity, honey.
Sailor Moon: W-what?! What are you talking about?
Queen Serenity: The movies. The whole thing with the Kissenian Blossom, and Fiore, and your future child? It's all just a whole other continuity.

Continuity is a confusing thing. Sometimes when adapting a work, writers will scrap previous continuity and write a new continuity either disregarding the old one, or painting continuity in Broad Strokes. The result is an Alternate Continuity — a story that is no less "official" than the original, but which cannot be reconciled with it with regards to Backstory or canon. It effectively lives in a different plane of existence. Sometimes this forms the basis of a Series Franchise.

Anime in particular has several diverse distribution paths in Japan, depending on its format — motion pictures in theaters, OVAs in direct-to-consumer sales, and 26+ episode-long series on television. It is not uncommon for an anime to transfer from one distribution path/format to another. This is most frequently seen in shows that enjoy great success as OVAs; they jump to broadcast, and what was once effectively a miniseries becomes a story it takes an entire season to tell. Alternately, a successful series can become a movie.


When such a move is made, it's common for the story to simply be retold in the new medium, often with radical changes in both plot and characterization, creating an Alternate Continuity.

Oftentimes, an Alternate Continuity is unintentionally started when a show based on an unfinished series of a different medium runs out of material, as in Overtook the Manga.

Sometimes an Alternate Continuity is the occasion for Adaptation Decay, which means the gradual change (not necessarily bad, just change) in the themes and characters of the original. See also Elseworld and Canon Discontinuity.

One of the meta-causes of Alternate Universe.

When a show's writers make the Alternate Continuity their new "main" Continuity while discarding the old one, it becomes a Continuity Reboot. If the Alternate Continuity and the regular one share backstory and diverge from each other at some point, that's generally an Alternate Timeline.


This is not the same as an Alternate Universe in that outside of crossovers and What If? scenarios, they generally don't interact with the "main" universe. An n Alternate Continuity will become an Alternate Universe if the characters do cross over.

Note that this trope is specifically about changes in continuity moving from medium to medium, or after a Continuity Reboot. See also The Movie, Ultimate Universe (a Sub-Trope of this Alternate Continuity), Canon Immigrant and Series Franchise. A Fan Fic which attempts to weld two or more continuities into a single story, it's called Patchwork Fic.


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  • A lot of Go Nagai's works have been revised for quite a while. Among these are the three Getter Robo OVAs (Armageddon, Shin vs. Neo, and New), the Mazinkaiser OVAs, Kotetsushin Jeeg, Gaiking: Legend of Daiku Maryu and Shin Mazinger.
  • A television series of Ah! My Goddess (which had been made into a 5-episode OVA in the early-middle 1990s) premiered in Japan in January 2005. The first episode alone makes it clear that it is an alternate continuity.
  • Ai Yori Aoshi started as a manga (now concluded after 17 volumes) that became the anime. The anime rearranged the order and details of some events, but maintained much of the same storyline. It ran for two seasons, but ended before the manga, leaving unresolved the primary Story Arc of whether Kaoru and Aoi will ever be able to publicly get together. Very roughly speaking, the anime covers much of the events from volumes 1 to 12 of the manga.
  • Black Butler has two different continuities: the ongoing manga and the 24-episode anime. The anime not only featured a few differences in the plotlines it took from the manga (such as certain key characters appearing earlier than they were supposed to), but had new plotlines, supporting characters, and main villains when it Overtook the Manga after the 6th episode. Even the supporting characters that had originally appeared in the manga had their long-term roles (Soma and Agni being recurring characters in the manga as opposed to simply disappearing at the end of their arc in the anime) and appearances (Aberline) and personality (both, in the case of Queen Victoria) changed in the anime.
  • The various versions of the series starting with the Blood: The Last Vampire OVA. There were several manga adaptions of the original concept, each with varying storylines, then the Blood+ anime took some of the basic character templates and ideas and made a series that bears only a slight resemblance to the original. This again also has several manga adaptions that take different paths. Six years later after Blood +, another TV series, Blood-C, was aired which has similar concept with the OVA but Bloodier and Gorier and it also spanned two manga adaptations and a movie which is a sequel to the show.
  • The anime adaptation of Blue Dragon all but ignores the plot of the game it was based on, only keeping the most basic elements of it intact.
  • Bubblegum Crisis does this with its sequel Bubblegum Crisis: Tokyo 2040. Ironically, while the initial hardsuit designs were more or less lifted directly off the end of The Original Series, of the characters, only Big Bad Brian J. Mason has any resemblance to his OVA counterpart. This was done for legal reasons: the team making 2040 had the rights to the hardsuit designs, but not the character designs.
  • CLANNAD: The TV anime follows the game's True End: Nagisa wins and she and Ushio both do not die, and two OVA productions featuring the two most popular girls winning (Tomoyo's OVA and the OVA for Kyou) exist, as well as the Toei movie leaves Nagisa dead and instead focuses on Tomoya's post-traumatic-stress-disorder and his relationship with Ushio.
  • The three manga adaptations of Code Geass are all Alternate Continuities of varying degrees. Lelouch of the Rebellion is mostly a straight adaptation of the show, but with no Humongous Mecha and a greater focus on humor. Suzaku of the Counterattack focuses on the Forgotten Childhood Friend to the point of combining three of the Anime's characters into a single new one to better suit the plot. Code Geass: Nightmare of Nunnally is a completely alternate take where The Hero's Ill Girl little sister becomes a super-powered Loli with a mystical mecha fighting other super-powered Lolis with mystical mecha. The fourth manga is even more bizarre. Lelouch leads the Shinsengumi and the "Black Revolutionaries" in the midst of the Bakamatsu and Geass is the power to summon Knightmare Frames.
    • Interestingly enough, at the end of Nightmare of Nunnally, Nunnally says that while touching Heaven's Door as part of Charles' god-killing ritual, she saw several different realities. One of these realities is the anime continuity, and a montage of Euphemia killing the Japanese, Suzaku in his standoff with Lelouch at the end of R1, and Lelouch's death are shown, none of which happen in Nightmare of Nunnally.
    • Let's not forget Super Robot Wars Z2, wherein, with enough Zero points, you're given the options of keeping Shirley safe and retaining the Black Knights' faith.
    • Code Geass: Lelouch of the Re;surrection is in the continuity of the recap movies, where among other things, Shirley is alive, Lelouch is revived because of C.C.'s inability to cope, and characters like Mao never appeared.
  • For Cutey Honey, we have Shin Cutey Honey (a Cyberpunk version set in the future), Cutey Honey Flash! (a more Magical Girl Warrior take), Re: Cutie Honey (a Retro Universe version), and Cutie Honey Universe (adding new forms to Honey's repotoire), as well as a few live action continuities in THE LIVE and Tears.
  • The Death Note live-action films eventually veer away from the plot as seen in the Manga and Anime versions. The American film takes place in a completely new continuity from the Japanese versions altogether. That's not even counting the original one-shot, which doesn't feature Light as a Death Note wielder at all.
    • The 2015 live-action series has a completely different setup from the manga, anime and film series. Instead of Light being a Sociopath and Villain Protagonist, he's just a troubled guy, coping with the faulty justice system and living without his mother.
  • For Devilman, these are only a few of the alternate versions:
    • the 70's anime: Akira never meets Ryou, Amon is the dominant personality since Akira dies in their first encounter, and Miki survives.
    • Devilman Grimoire: Miki gets a Devilman form of her own among other upsets.
    • Devilman Lady: The Devilman powers go instead to Jun Fudo, while Lan Asuka serves as Ryou's and Satan's counterpart.
    • Violence Jack: Not entirely, but Devilman characters do appear. Surprisingly takes place after the typical apocalypse scenario in other Devilman series, with "Jack" (an amnesiac Akira) going off the deep end.
    • DEVILMAN crybaby: Twice the gore, twice the sex, and more characters introduced to the core cast like Miko.
  • The Digimon series had at least six continuities.
    • While Digimon Adventure and Adventure 02 shared a continuity, one of the minor characters from 02, Ryou Akiyama, is also a prominent character in Digimon Tamers, which does not share a continuity with the two Adventure seasons. The continuity disconnect is not addressed in the English dub or even in the anime, but it is somewhat explained in the video games made for the Wonderswan in Japan (which never made their way stateside).
    • The Digimon franchise has five mangas, and one of them, V-Tamer has crossover specials with Adventure 02, Frontier and Ryo of the Digimon games.
    • There are also a (Japan-only) three-part novelization of the first series which, although co-written by Hiroyuki Kakudo (the Adventure director) and Masaki Hiro (a main writer), has several episodes' events play out differently than depicted in the anime.
  • Dragon Ball has quite a few. First, there's the manga itself (considered the "core" or "actual" continuity), followed by the anime continuity, which covers the manga's events and includes additional material (such as Filler, new bit-part characters, slightly different fights and some character-building moments). Each of these has its own continuation of the franchise that can actually be taken as their own continuity, to boot: the anime has Dragon Ball GT (often considered a "splinter timeline" that could occur), while the manga has the recent Dragon Ball Online, Dragon Ball Z: Battle of Gods, Dragon Ball Z: Resurrection ‘F’, and Dragon Ball Super. There's also the Dragon Ball movies that predate Battle of Gods, which are very much an "alternate reality" affair and fall into Non-Serial Movie territory.
  • El-Hazard: The Magnificent World was an OVA series that became El-Hazard: Wanderers on TV. In the process, most of the relationships Makoto had with the women in his life were altered dramatically, with his primary romantic interest shifting from Ifurita (who has only an In Name Only counterpart in the TV continuity) to Princess Rune Venus (who's significantly younger than in the OVA so as to match Makoto's age). Later, a second OVA series based on the first was produced that continued the plot, but introduced several new characters and a new "ultimate weapon of doom". That success was then followed with a 12-episode TV series which pulled an Or Was It a Dream? at the end. A final special was released for the TV series, the required Beach Episode.
  • The adaptations of Fate/stay night go all over the place with this. The first anime adaptation followed the Fate route, with some elements of the other routes haphazardly mashed in. An anime movie for Unlimited Blade Works was also produced, but it rushed through the story at lightning speed. Thankfully, the 2014 Fate/stay night [Unlimited Blade Works] adaptation gave the UBW route a proper adaptation. The final route of the game, Heaven's Feel, was adapted into the a theatrical trilogy by the same studio.
  • The Fullmetal Alchemist manga and its 2003 anime adaptation start off fairly similar, but begin to diverge more and more as they progress. Do not ask people which one is better. There is also a second anime adaptation that follows the manga's continuity much closer than the first, Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood.
  • Futakoi and the second TV series, Futakoi Alternative are a quite obvious example. The first being a fairly normal harem-type anime, while the second was much more madcap comedy.
  • GeGeGe no Kitarō is a 60's manga that gets a new anime adaptation every decade, each following a different continuity and versions of the main characters. As for the year 2018, it has six anime series plus Hakaba Kitarō (a way Darker and Edgier anime version), and two live-action films.
  • Ghost in the Shell has four alternate continuities: the original manga; the first movie and its sequel; the Stand Alone Complex television series and its sequel movie; and the Arise OVA / Alternative Architecture TV series and its sequel movie. (If you count the Hollywood live-action adaptation film starring Scarlett Johansson, there's five.)
  • Gravitation has some major differences between the manga (that came first) and the anime adaptation. Because the anime series was only 13 episodes long, one character (Maiko) is completely written out. Also, in the anime, Shuichi is already out of high school and signed to NG when he meets Eiri, but in the manga he is still a high school student whose talents are undiscovered.
  • Gundam tends to spawn a lot of these, given how many versions of the same story they have (TV series, movie trilogy, manga, novel, video game...) in addition to the seven different Alternate Universes the franchise has created.
  • Hanaukyō Maid Team. The first and second series cover slightly different ground.
  • Haou Airen: The CD drama, where Hakuron survives. Apparently, had he lived, he and Kurumi would've been Happily Married and had a daughter.
  • Hell Girl is most famous as an anime, but there's also a manga and a short-lived live-action show. The manga can more or less coexist with the anime, but the live-action show definitely can't — Hajime and Tsugumi have a different backstory and a very different ending to their storyline.
  • Though not as broken up as some others, Hellsing began as a manga and was made into a TV series. This ran for thirteen episodes and was a victim of Overtook the Manga, so the plot began just as the Manga's did, but halfway through a new Big Bad was introduced and half the characters of the original plot never got animated. (It ended on with a Cliffhanger and left a lot of loose ends.) The OVAs, on the other hand, follow the manga very closely. (And despite some rumors, there is no live-action movie being made.)
  • The Idolmaster:
  • Kimba the White Lion has the 2009 TV special that takes place in a future where man has screwed up the world's ecosystems to the point where people had to make an artificial environment for animals.
  • Kujibiki Unbalance has the OVAs included in Genshiken (consisting of episodes 1, 21, and 25 of an imaginary TV series); a radio drama based on this series; and a TV reimagining of the concept, which features very different character designs.
    • The mangaka gave a nod to this difference in the manga, in which the original Kujibiki Unbalance is discussed as though it were also a manga. The changes made in the Kujibiki Unbalance TV series is discussed by the characters in the manga as though it were the first adaptation of "Kuji-an" to video, rather than the second, as it is in our world.
  • When Kyoto Animation adapted the light novel Love, Chunibyo & Other Delusions into an anime, the resulting adaptation is practically this towards the original.
  • Lyrical Nanoha is an alternate continuity of the game and OVA Triangle Heart where her brother and sister are ninja-like bodyguards battling a terrorist group that killed their father (who is alive in Nanoha). The Nanoha franchise had since gained several of its own Alternate Continuities, such as The Movie continuity, The Movie manga continuity (which started like mere supplementary material until it veered off in its own direction), the Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha A's Portable continuity (an Alternate Timeline based on Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha A's having a different conclusion), and the Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha INNOCENT continuity (A completely different setting where instead of fighting with magic, Nanoha and friends challenge each other to a Card Battle Game).
  • The Macross franchise does this in a really confusing manner:
    • Super Dimension Fortress Macross has its movie, Macross: Do You Remember Love?. The movie tells basically the same story but with some major differences from the original, along with redesigning the look of many things in the series. Later stories take elements from both versions as canon. Word of God is that both the series and the movie are after-the-fact retellings, and the true story of what happened was somewhere in between them; the details are unimportant, only the major events should be considered when speaking of the backstory.
    • Macross Frontier adds itself to the list when it went from series to movies. The movies retell the story but the plot diverges heavily with the second film, leading to an entirely different concluding act (although the conclusion itself is quite similar between the two versions). It mainly gets confusing as to who survived the events (Mikhail Blanc and Grace O'Connor die in the series but survive the movies, while Brera Sterne gets the opposite treatment).
    • And finally, there is Macross II, a distant sequel that had no input from the original writers. Despite this, most fans feel it isn't a bad film, though not particularly outstanding either (it gets more attention in America because it was one of the few Macross products actually released there). Officially, the writers have declared it alternate continuity.
  • The first half of the Magic Knight Rayearth anime and manga are almost identical (barring a couple of Schrodinger's Cats.) The second halves for each follow the same basic premise, but diverge wildly by the inclusion of a Big Bad to the TV series, and the elimination of a minor character's true form.
    • However, the Rayearth OVA, is an entirely separate continuity: the characters are all (mostly) there, and a few of the relationships survived, but aside from their names, their Elemental Powers, and the existence of Cephiro and Rune Gods, the OVA has nothing to do with The Original Series. Not even the protagonists' personalities are the same.
  • Mazinger Z: It started as a manga. Then it was adapted into an anime. Then it got another manga at the same time the first manga and the anime were being published and aired respectively. Then both manga versions and the anime version got sequels, each one developping its own continuity and in some cases adding more backstory to the characters. Then more manga and anime were made, each one telling the story its way until the last iterations Mazinkaiser and Shin Mazinger.
  • My Hero, which takes place in a much different world than the manga it would eventually be retooled into. While there are still heroes and villains running around, it's more of a fight against monsters than other powered individuals.
  • Negima! has six separate continuities: the main manga Negima! Magister Negi Magi, Negima! (first TV series), Negima!? (the second TV series), Negima!! (the live-action TV series), Negima!? neo (manga which combines the first manga and the second TV series), and Negima (Ito) Bun (Spin-Off Babies manga that has Negi as a young man teacher and the girls as his kindergarten class).
  • In Neon Genesis Evangelion's last episode, Shinji has a vision of his life as a typical high school comedy anime (except, you know, it still has Humongous Mecha) during a Mind Rape. This concept was so popular as to spawn several Dating Sim games and the manga Neon Genesis Evangelion: Angelic Days.
    • Another Alternate Continuity titled Neon Genesis Evangelion: Campus Apocalypse goes way farther in its differences: NERV is a Catholic boarding school; EVAs are actually unique conventional weapons (i.e., Asuka wields a whip while Shinji has a handgun, etc.); Angels are instead disembodied consciousnesses that can kill and take over any body they choose; and the motivation for killing the Angels is to collect their Cores so Yggdrasil won't collapse, destroying all realities.
    • Then there's Evangelion ANIMA, published in Hobby Japan Magazine and specifically made out of Anno's desire to do a "Gundam-style" Alternate Continuity. In it, NERV made peace with the JSSDF and fought off SEELE, with the story picking up three years later and dealing with things like multiple Rei clones, space-use Evas, and other fun oddities.
    • A Lighter and Softer alternate universe based on Episode 26's "slice of life" alternate reality is in fact so popular it serves as the basis for multiple Evangelion games and spin-offs. Notably, the romantic comedy Neon Genesis Evangelion: Angelic Days and shounen ecchi comedy Shinji Ikari Raising Project are the two longest running spin-offs and they both follow this routine, with a very Tsundere Asuka and a very Moe Rei competing for Shinji's affections.
    • In addition, both the manga version of Evangelion and the Rebuild of Evangelion movie series are standard alternate continuities that retain the core elements of the story, but change a number of significant details along the way. Especially the latter which goes completely Off the Rails a bit into the story.
  • The 20th Pokémon movie, Pokémon: I Choose You!, is an alternate retelling of the first season of the anime, with several key differences: Ash has a slightly different outfit, he has two different travelling companions, he has closer ties to Ho-Oh, and meets Pokémon from all generations a lot sooner than he does in the main anime. Two sequels would follow, confirming it to be a Continuity Reboot for the films after the last two beforehand bombed.
  • The only connection between the visual novel and anime versions of Popotan is its cast, and some of the game characters were dropped for the transition (including the protagonist), while others were added.
  • Pretty Cure has over 17 series with 15 distinct continuities, and there's the occasional Bat Family Crossover (the Pretty Cure All Stars films, Hugtto! Pretty Cure's crossover event). Each one follows the same basic plot, but changes up a few elements (besides using different characters and settings) each time. Most apparently, the exact nature of being a Pretty Cure varies subtly between seasons, with some relying on Wonder Twin Powers (such as Futari wa Pretty Cure and Maho Girls PreCure) and others having a larger ensemble team. Either way, The Power of Friendship remains a universal constant.
  • Project A-ko has two continuities; the main set of OVAs, and the "Vs." OVAs, which take place in some sort of parallel dimension. In "Vs.", A-ko and B-ko are best friends instead of being arch-enemies, A-ko outright dislikes C-ko after meeting her (rather than being childhood friends), and they are both space mercenaries/treasure hunters instead of being an "ordinary" girl and a Psycho Lesbian rich genius.
  • RahXephon also made the leap to a movie from TV, attempting to cram its extensive and complex storyline into less than 2 hours while at the same time providing new Back Story. In the process, one character was completely eliminated, and several others rewritten dramatically (including putting one to sleep for most of the film).
  • Record of Lodoss War has three alternate continuities: the original novel series, the anime OVA, and the manga version of Chronicles of Heroic Knights. While the anime OVA compresses the material down and is usually suggested to be treated as if it ended about halfway in, it contains numerous continuity errors with the original novel and the manga adaptation of that part of the story. Most other manga fit into the core timeline, along with the anime series of Chronicles of Heroic Knights. The manga of Chronicles, however, inexplicably rewrites the second half of the plot completely, reaching a separate but equal Moment of Awesome, and is notable for developing secondary characters much more than the series. It's still a separate canon though. Rune Soldier Louie, since it is set on a separate continent and features no returning characters, disregards the differences between the alternate continuities. As for Legend Of Crystania, it fits into the core timeline (non-OVA), but since it came out when most people in the west didn't know of any other Lodoss continuities than the OVA, it propagated the confusion with its differences.
  • The TV series Revolutionary Girl Utena was turned into a movie, Adolescence of Utena, which attempted to retell the 39-episode story in 100 minutes by filtering it through the hindbrain of Salvador Dalí and lacing it with LSD. To a lesser extent, the manga serves this purpose as well. Although it follows the anime closer than the movie, it also introduces several of its own plot points, especially in the final volume. It's worth noting, though, that while the manga, show and movie are separate canons, they can be strung together to tell a story that symbolically carries over between continuities. And then the movie has its own manga version, with slightly differing plot elements particularly in who nearly drowned.
  • Robotech began as an alternate continuity to the original Japanese Macross series (as well as Super Dimension Cavalry Southern Cross and Genesis Climber MOSPEADA). It spawned its own Expanded Universe of comics, novels, video games, and aborted attempts at animated sequels before 2007 with the release of Robotech: The Shadow Chronicles. As early as 1986, the little known disaster that was Robotech The Movie The Untold Story (a Macekre of Megazone 23 and Southern Cross) was quickly declared by Macek himself that it was an alternate continuity. In 2006, prior to the release of Shadow Chronicles, Harmony Gold declared that only the original 85 episode series was canon with everything else being secondary continuity. If the planned live action movie ever gets out of Development Hell, this will definitely be an alternate continuity due to the Zeerust Canon nature of the original series where the majority of the action began in 2009.
    • Eternity Comics' Invid War: Aftermath series would have been a different continuity from the Jack Mckinney novel End of The Circle. And Wildstorm's prequel comics were alternate continuity to Eternity's Prelude to Macross as well as Comico's Robotech The Graphic Novel.
    • Other comics that clearly take place in Alternate Continuities
      • Antarctic Press (1997-98)
      • Dynamite Press (Robotech/Voltron crossover) (2013-2015)
      • Titan Comics (2017-)
  • Rockman EXE, also known as Mega Man Battle Network (games' title in English-speaking areas) or MegaMan NT Warrior (anime dub) is essentially an alternate version of the regular Mega Man (Classic) universe, with the major change being that the Robot Masters and other major characters are sentient programs instead of robots. Meanwhile, the games, anime, and manga of EXE are all separate continuities.
    • Also, every game since 3 has been One Game for the Price of Two. Lan seems to remember any experiences he has in either version, even when they're inconsistent; it's as if he personally experienced not one version or the other, but some quantum superposition of the two. (For instance, he remembers both Shuko and Raika after BN4.) The most jarring example is Colonel: MegaMan remembers him well in both versions of BN6, but he only met him briefly in the Team ProtoMan version of 5.
    • Interestingly, the Battle Network/NT Warrior universes and the Classic universe share a common source: Doctor Light and Doctor Wily. They branch off when the Doctor Light of the BN/NTW universe(s) went with Network Technology instead of Robotics, as happened in the Classic universe. Also interestingly, it is because of this that Wily became evil in the first place- he had a degree in Robotics, and in a world about computers and networks, nobody cared about his inventions.
    • What this means is that Wily and Light are the most significant people in the Mega Man Multiverse. What they choose as their discipline ends up revolutionizing the world and completely changing society. It would be interesting to see what would happen if they were geneticists or rocket scientists....wait. No it wouldn't. You'd either get Warp Drive or Ricardo MontalBan.
  • The anime adaptation of Rozen Maiden differs significantly from the manga - to the point that none of the events in the second season even happened in the original.
  • Sailor Moon - The Queen of the Continuities! With a manga series, a 200-episode anime series, a live-action series, and twenty-five stage productions, with only 3 occurring in the same continuity! That makes twenty-five separate continuities! And that's not counting the video games or the possible splits within the same continuities, or the 2014 anime. The idea of a Sailor Moon "canon" has become humorous to some folks.
  • Saint Seiya: The Lost Canvas start as prequel to Saint Seiya, but became non-canon due to many irreconcilable contradictions with Next Dimension. Howewer, it has some canon plot references/hints about the original manga.
  • Sands of Destruction started production as a video game, but was given an animated adaptation as a promotional boost. Aside from living in a world where Sand Is Water and beastmen rule over humans, little is shared between them; even character personalities and alignments are shifted (male characters are more consistent in their characterization across continuities, while the two female leads change dramatically). Murao Minoru was later asked to create a manga, which also shares little in common with the other two continuities. As no sequels have ever been produced, fans are left to assume that all continuities are equal in terms of canonicity, though most favor the game.
  • Sayonara, Zetsubou-Sensei: Subverted/parodied in the first episode of season 2. The episode initially sets itself up as an Alternate Continuity, but switches right back to normal half way through the episode.
  • The SHUFFLE! TV anime, which ended with the winning girl being Asa Shigure, and the manga, Shuffle!: Days in the Bloom, which had Sia as the winning girl.
    • While sequel games have been made following paths of if Nerine or Kaede won out. And the Kaede-centric game further snarls itself up, by showing Asa with long hair, which implies her ending being canon anyway for that branch.
  • The Slayers franchise is right up there with Tenchi Muyo in its own right. It originated as a 15-book Light Novel series, which has over 30 prequel novels (Slayers Special/Smash/Delicious). From there...
    • 1. A 5-season anime series: The first two are based on the first eight novels, the remaining three are original stories. Tends to heavily contradict itself, especially considering that the fourth and fifth seasons came eleven years after the third.
    • 2. The Non-Serial Movies, all based on the Slayers Special novels. While the first four (chronicling the protagonists' early adventures with a flaky sorceress who just so happens to be the long lost sister of one of her later allies) is a plausible start before the anime, the fifth is problematic, as it involves the four main characters from the tv series set in a way that could be after seasons 2 or 3.
    • 3. Most of the manga made are of their own continuity; Super Explosive Demon Story is its own interpretation of the first 8 novels/seasons 1 and 2, and there is an alternative manga to the fifth Non-Serial Movie (Slayers Premium). In addition to these, there are wholly different mangas set elsewhere, such as Slayers Light Magic (set in the future) and The Hourglass of Falces, which is the only manga featuring all six core characters (mainstays Lina and Gourry, Zelgadis and Amelia from the first novel arc, and Luke and Millina from the second novel arc) together.
    • 4. Five video games, all their own stories and officially non-canon.
  • Space Battleship Yamato: There is the original 1974 series and its 1977 movie compilation (which has two endings; one has the crew reach Iscandar and find out that Queen Starsha has died but left a recorded message. But either way, the Earth is still saved but one ending leaves no room for the events of New Voyage, Starsha's daughter Sasha, or Mamoru's later role). Then you have Arrivederci Yamato and its 1978 TV expanded version with alternate ending (allowing a logical continuation). The Yamato III series may or may not have taken place in 2205, according to some printed sources. Either way, Final Yamato takes place in 2203 so that means that the Yamato III events have either been eliminated or, given that Galman and Bolar get a brief mention in Final, the events of Yamato III might have happened in a condensed version. There are two continuations that are clearly alternate realities: the aborted Yamato 2520 and the later Yamato Ressurection. We also have manga versions of the story soley by co-creator Leiji Matsumoto that are strictly Leijiverse; Yamato freely interacts with Captain Harlock and Galaxy Express 999. Matsumoto has rights to the name Yamato and all of the visual design elements while the Yoshinobu Nishizaki estate has rights to the name Yamato, established characters and established storylines. It's anyone's guess where the forgotten OVA Dai Yamato Zero lies in terms of continuity, given its setting in the year 3199, but neither Matsumoto or Nishizaki did appear to have been involved in its production. Last but not least, we have reboot Space Battleship Yamato 2199, and as an honorary mention, it is worth counting the Westernized version of the original series.
  • Stitch! is often said to take place in a different continuity from the Lilo & Stitch movies and first TV series. The events do sorta still occur in the anime, only Stitch goes back to his old ways when he feels abandoned by Lilo as she grew older.
  • Tenchi Muyo! is perhaps the king of alternate continuities, with at least eight different alternate "worlds" (some, such as Pretty Sammy, have more than one continuity themselves). Oddly enough, the Tenchi movies are not separate continuities in and of themselves, but dovetail into one or the other of the TV series. A few of the spinoffs of the original OVA are canon to the series, including Tenchi Muyo GXP and Tenchi Muyo: War on Geminar. Dual! is the first real alternate universe to the OVA series. For bonus fun, one of the Pretty Sammy series has a minor character who is a cousin on Nanami and Jinnai from El-Hazard linking both meta-series together. Mr. Fujisawa from the same series also happens to be the teacher of Tenchi's class in Tenchi in Tokyo.
  • Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann has a set of movies that follow the plotline similarly, with different ways of major events happening. There are also a set of Parallel Works that have all the main characters in entirely different situations and plotlines.
  • The Ultima manga feature new characters and settings inspired by the main games, along with different character interpretations and personalities.
  • The Uma Musume game has alternate continuities in its two mangas and its anime. The Starting Gate! manga is the only adaptation to have a direct counterpart (it shares an introduction with the 2018 anime), though they diverge when Special Week takes a detour to watch a race rather than go straight to school.
  • X1999 was released first as a movie, then again as a TV series five years later. The movie, for reasons of length and limited information, had an extremely simplified plotline. Also, both were finished before the manga, and all three killed different characters and resolved the plot in different ways.
  • Yu-Gi-Oh!, consists of the original manga continuity which includes a Side Story Yu-Gi-Oh! R (which is of disputed canon); the Toei series continuity; the Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Monsters and GX continuity; and an alternate manga retelling of GX. There are also two Non Serial Movies (one for each anime) and the non-canonical Capsule Monsters mini-series. Then there is 5D's, which might be an Alternate Universe.
    • The Tenth Anniversary special places 5Ds 20 Minutes into the Future of GX, but the plot involves the villain trying to make a Split Timeline, so...
  • Zoids has at least nine different continuities:
    • The Battle Story. The original story, featured exclusively on the boxes of the Zoids model kits.
    • The Chaotic Century anime. A loose adaption of the Battle Story. Includes distant Sequel Series New Century.
      • The Chaotic Century manga, which went in a wildly different direction than either the anime or the Battle Story.
    • The Fuzors anime, which takes place in a more contemporary setting, as opposed to the usual Desert Punk setting that Zoids usually has.
    • The Genesis anime, which takes place After the End on Planet Zi.
    • The Zoids comic, also known as "Spider-Man and Zoids"note  or just "The UK Comic". Featured a setting and backstory unlike any other incarnation of the franchise. One of the earliest works of Grant Morrison, though he apparently doesn't like to talk about it.
    • The Z-Knights Spin-Off, which is only tangentially connected to Zoids. It involves humanity colonizing Mars and later discovering Planet Zi and its "metallic lifeforms", which are brought back to Earth and reverse engineered into humanoid Humongous Mecha called the Z-Knights.
      • The European version of the story is a much more generic "Good vs Evil" story, where the Z-Knights are warriors from video games that have been given the ability to jump into the real world via a virus.
    • The Wild sub-franchise. Announced in February 2018, stated to include a new anime, manga, and tie-in video game for the Nintendo Switch.

    Comic Books 
  • Pick any major comic book series; you'll find at least two conflicting storylines and a movie or two for good measure. Both DC and Marvel also use actual Alternate Universes. Also see Ultimate Marvel, the original Ultimate Universe. Now that both the mainstream Marvel reality and the Ultimate Marvel reality have (indirectly) interacted with the same Alternate Universe (Marvel Zombies - the original Squadron Supreme also make an appearance in Ultimate Power), you could say that they are a part of the same Alternate Universe "network" rather than two separate Alternate Continuities (indeed, it's been designated as Earth-1610, where the main universe is Earth-616).
    • By 2015, the Ultimate and Original Marvel Universes had crossed over many times, and were both destroyed in the third Secret Wars event.
  • The Punisher has several Alternate Continuities:
  • According to this interview, the 1995 archie comics of Scooby-Doo were this to the cartoons.
  • The Spider-Man comic books and newspaper comics suffer from Alternate Continuity in many ways. For instance, in 2009 Spider-Man was reintroduced as a single man for reasons unconnected with events in the comic book universe — the writer did a reverse Funky Winkerbean and went back ten years in time. A few months later it turned out to be All Just a Dream. The newspaper Peter Parker is also much more handsome than the comic book one, although why that should be so is a good question.
  • The Disney Ducks Comic Universe works like this: There is no ongoing continuity, but occasionally one specific story will reference another specific story. There are comic books and pocket books, and each have their own continuity. There are many characters that only appear in the pocket books. In the pocket books, Uncle Scrooge's rival is named John Rockerduck, while in the comic books he has no rival except for Flintheart Glomgold, who appears very rarely. In the pocket books, Donald has a secret superhero identity by the name of Duck Avenger or Paperinik, but this is only ever mentioned in stories specifically about his adventures as Duck Avenger.
  • The comic mini-series, Star Trek: Countdown bridges the continuity gap between Star Trek: Nemesis and Star Trek (2009), depicting Spock Prime along with a partial TNG cast reunion helping Nero trying to prevent Romulus' imminent destruction in the prime reality. Though Word of God decanonizes the comics, the film doesn't explicitly ignore them either leaving its canonicity up to the readers, thus rendering the mini-series' continuity ambiguous. Although it should be noted the graphic novelization of the 2009 movie officially integrates and features the events of Countdown in the scene where Spock Prime mind-melds with New Kirk on Delta Vega.
  • The Smurfs has currently four different continuities: the comic books, the 1980s cartoon show, Sony Pictures' live-action film series, and Smurfs: The Lost Village, with the upcoming 2019 cartoon show possibly becoming another new continuity. To tell apart the continuities, Greedy is the village chef in the cartoon show, while in the comic books and the movie Chef, Baker, and Greedy are separate characters. For other notable differences, read these four separate pages at the Smurfs Wiki. (Their stories in the Johan and Peewit series could be considered a fifth continuity, since their Smurf Village is located in the Cursed Land instead of the Smurf Forest.) Sometimes for the sake of merchandise like the Smurfs Village game app, there would be mixing of characters from most if not all of these continuities.
  • The Adventure Time comic book series as a whole takes place in a separate continuity that diverges from the show sometime during the fourth season. The major giveaways of this divergence being that the Lich was killed by being thrown into the sun, the missing piece of Earth has been restored, and Billy is still alive. In addition, while the spinoff Marceline and the Scream Queens shows that other vampires exist in Ooo, the series proper later revealed that Marceline is the Last of Her Kind and that she was a vampire hunter that all but exterminated vampires before being turned herself.
  • Shortly after the fifth season of Samurai Jack ended its run on [adult swim], IDW Publishing published a five-issue miniseries titled Samurai Jack: Quantum Jack, which is a self-contained story that is not in the same continuity as the original cartoon or IDW's previous ongoing comic continuation that lasted 20 issues.
  • The Comic-Book Adaptation of Dexter's Laboratory is seen as having not one, but two alternate continuities;
However, whether they are an alternate continuity or not is debated by fans, with some believing it is in Broad Strokes of the original series.
  • Spider-Man: Life Story: Zdarsky said that his insistence was to insert the different Spider-Man stories into the actual decades they were published in, as such while a version of Lee-Ditko Spider-Man (which did have real time aging and progression) definitely happened, changes and alterations happen from his depiction of the Lee-Romita era and eras after that.

    Fan Works 
  • While Calvin and Hobbes originally met Galaxoid and Nebular during the fall, in Can You Imagine That? they meet the summer after the original strip.
  • While the events of A Triangle in the Stars are set after Gravity Falls, it is only set after the events of Ocean Gem in Steven Universe. Because of this, the Cluster doesn't exist, and a few Gems are different. Not to say that there aren't minor references to the episodes afterwards, however.
  • The first Dante's Night at Freddy's story could conceivably take place in the same continuity as Five Nights at Freddy's. The sequel isn't so straightforward.
  • Sonic X: Dark Chaos is basically this trope to the third season of Sonic X. According to Word of God, the events of the Dark Chaos backstory took place in canon too. However, there are several key differences in the canon timeline according to the author. Most notably, Tsali's homeworld is never destroyed and he never becomes the Ultimate Weapon and Maledict doesn't get involved in the Metarex War at all due to the Demon Empire falling into an economic depression after his war with Cosmo's race (which in turn stops the Angels from invading the galaxy in retaliation). Thanks to these key differences, the canon Sonic X events happened in the show rather than the events of Dark Chaos.
  • RWBY Grimm Darkness ends up being this to RWBY in regards to Volume 3 and beyond, due to a few events in the latter making things incompatible with the fanfic unless a few retcons are made regarding Volume 3. A list of such changes made to Volume 3 are on the fanfic page itself.
  • Ruby and Nora is a separate continuity to RWBY that diverges from the events of Volume 1. The main differences in this continuity are that the majority of characters are gay and the story is darker, with there being a high death toll, including many well-liked characters.
  • Fatal Frame VI: Vengeance serves as this to the main Fatal Frame series as of the release of Fatal Frame: Maiden of Black Water; for starters, Miku Hinasaki married a man named Shuichiro Kobayashi and had two daughters, one of whom is Sumiko's friend Minako.
  • Tokimeki PokéLive! and TwinBee is this to the core series Pokémon games as well as the Love Live! School Idol Festival and ALL STARS mobile games, the Kirameki and Hibikino sagas of Tokimeki Memorial and the TwinBee games, with some of the differences being that the story is darker at times on the LL!, TokiMemo and Twinbee side of things while also being more lighthearted than certain points of the Pokémon games at times, Pokémon anime exclusive characters such as Risa and Margo existing alongside characters such as Hilda and Hilbert, the establishment of a Pokémon Trainer's Club at Nijigasaki High thanks to Hilda which is nonexistent in SIF ALL STARS as well as the Love Live! Nijigasaki High School Idol Club anime and new characters such as Yoko Catherine Osaka White and Elesis "Ellie" Kashiwagi Kousaka who are exclusive to PokéLive!. And excluding Coco and Margo, the other heroes/heroines are gay/lesbian or bi.
  • In EVA Sessions: Someplace Vast and Dry, the entire timeline for Neon Genesis Evangelion is shifted forward by fifteen years, such that The Event (Someplace's version of Second Impact) takes place in 2015 rather than 2000, allowing for a Setting Update.

    Films — Animated 

    Films — Live-Action 
  • Depending on how you look at it, there are either two Alternate Continuities of Highlander (each with Retcons) — the first three movies and everything else — or there are a lot of them. Let's go through it step-by-step:
    • The original movie Highlander.
    • Highlander II: The Quickening, which considers the original movie canon. Notably, the theatrical version and the "Renegade Version" Director's Cut are quite different, so could count as two separate continuities in and of themselves.
    • Highlander: The Series comes later. The series is in an Alternate Continuity to the movies (as there are still Immortals alive all over the world). It does consider the original film canon in Broad Strokes, but not the sequel.
    • Highlander III: The Sorcerer (or The Final Dimension, depending on your area), released during the series' run, which considers only the original film canon. Not Highlander 2 or the TV series.
    • Highlander: The Raven, a short-lived Spin-off from the TV series which followed the TV series' continuity.
    • Then a fourth movie Highlander: Endgame which follows the continuity of the TV series (but retcons the last season of the show) rather than that of the previous films.
    • Then a fifth movie called Highlander: The Source which follows on from Endgame.
    • Then a short film called Highlander: Reunion which accepts the canon of the TV series and Endgame, but not The Source.
    • There is a remake of the original in the works as well.
    • The anime Highlander: The Search for Vengeance.
    • The Highlander comic books published by Dynamite
    • The Big Finish Productions audio dramas.
    • Five video games which either have little plot or were cancelled due to Development Hell and budget concerns.
    • Ten novels that consist of a novelization of the original film and tie-ins to the original series.
    • The low budget 17 minute reunion special that was made to repair the damage of The Source. There's a link to it on Hulu on the Other Wiki if you haven't given up on this franchise yet.
    • The Animated Series is set into the far future and operates differently enough to be considered its own continuity, immortals giving up their immortality at will and all.
    • The web series Highlander: The Methos Chronicles, which ties into the series canon as part of Methos's backstory.
    • Each of these continuities operate by their own sets of rules. Thus something that is portrayed as Word of God in one continuity may not happen the same way in another. This only serves to further irritate fans and causes them to hate each other and fight more and more over which version of Highlander they think is best. There can be only one! note 
  • Star Wars: A famous example of this is what happened to the original Star Wars Expanded Universe, which spans over 30 years of literature and other media. After Disney acquired the franchise, almost all of the material produced under George Lucas's ownership was placed into a separate continuity called Star Wars Legends, as Disney wanted a clean slate for the Sequel Trilogy (Episodes VII, VIII & IX) and their stand-alone films like Rogue One. As such, the only non-Disney-produced media that are still canonical are the original six films (theatrical cuts) and Star Wars: The Clone Wars.
    • A few examples of the differences between current canon and Legends:
      • In The Force Awakens, Ben Solo is Han and Leia's son and only child, instead of there being Jacen, Jaina, and Anakin Solo.
      • In the current canon, Luke Skywalker never married or had kids, whereas originally, Luke married Mara Jade and the two had a son named Ben Skywalker.
      • Post-battle of Endor, Luke rebuilt the Jedi Order by settling his new Jedi Praxeum ("Jedi academy" if you will) on Yavin 4 inside the pyramid that once housed the Rebel base that was targeted by the Death Star back in A New Hope. In the current canon, Luke taught the Jedi ways in a jar-shaped temple with several wooden huts, on a unspecified planet the biome of which is significantly different from Yavin 4.
      • In Rogue One, the Rogue One team intercepts the Death Star plans, overwriting pretty much every story involving Operation Starhook in the original expanded universe, including Kyle Katarn's involvement in stealing the plans in the Dark Forces series.
      • Solo takes plot elements from The Han Solo Trilogy, but changes names and details to make a different story.
    • Within the expanded universe itself, there's Star Wars: Infinities. Each of the original trilogy movies has an alternate continuity comic, with things like Luke dying on Hoth in The Empire Strikes Back and Vader surviving the Death Star and helping the rebels find Palpatine while wearing white armor in Return of the Jedi. There was also a novel supplement in which Luke was killed by Luuke in The Thrawn Trilogy. There are also other stores put into the Infinities category that weren't compatible with canon (Disney or Legends), like Skippy The Jedi Droid.
  • Superman:
  • Men in Black had at least two continuities. The first movie ends with J neuralizing K and taking L as a new partner. At the beginning of the second, we find L quit between movies, and the first third of the movie follows J trying to restore K's memories. In The Animated Series, however, J, K, and L are all agents at the same time. There were a series of tie-in novels with J and L, but these could be slotted into the timespan between movies.
  • James Bond:
    • The Daniel Craig incarnation in Casino Royale (2006) portrays him as a new and inexperienced agent. However, it is set in modern times, and therefore after every previous Bond film, and includes several characters that were later additions to the series of films, such as the female M played by Judi Dench. While still part of the EON series, the Craig films are intended to be a separate new timeline from the classic continuity (Dr. No to Die Another Day) where James Bond is supposed to be one man despite being played by five different actors across 40 years.
      • This, however, ignores the theory that "James Bond" is a title that is passed down to the next 007. Perhaps there is one continuity.
    • The movies are also a separate continuity to the original Ian Fleming novels.
    • Never Say Never Again is also in a different continuity to the official EON films.
    • Likewise, the comedic version of Casino Royale (1967), in which the "real" James Bond is actually an elderly gentleman and ex-lover of Mata Hari, has no connection to the standard Bond continuity... or does it?? It is made specifically clear in this film that after the retirement of the original Bond, his name became nothing more than a codename for new spies - and a subtle reference is made to Sean Connery's Bond as one of his namesakes. Between Daniel Craig's Bond only *just* becoming 007, and references in both On Her Majesty's Secret Service and (more subtly) Diamonds Are Forever to Connery and Lazenby's Bonds being different people entirely, one has to wonder...
    • The American Casino Royale from 1954 could never fit into any sort of official James Bond continuity. Bond himself is an American CIA agent, and Clarence (Felix) Leiter is an English MI-5 agent.
    • Any 007 games are placed in their own continuities from the film series.
  • The direct-to-DVD Tinker Bell movie is almost a different continuity from the Disney Fairies series of books, with only a handful of characters and some concepts in common.
  • The Star Trek reboot moviesnote  a.k.a. "The Kelvin Timeline" are explicitly set in an Alternate Timeline that exists parallel to the TV shows and the first ten films ("The Original Timeline"), so it could be a prequel without being Continuity Porn or getting hated like Star Trek: Enterprise. Nero and his Narada crew as well as Old Spock are from the original timeline. An Admiral Archer is also mentioned in passing.
  • The Godzilla series has the Showa, Heisei, and Millenium series, each a separate continuity with the original 1954 film being the only thing shared between them. In addition, each film in the Millennium series is itself a separate continuity (except for Godzilla Against Mechagodzilla and Godzilla Tokyo SOS).
  • The Halloween movies were rebooted three times, making at least four different timelines.
    • The first being the "Original Timeline" a.k.a. the "Thorn Timeline" which is Halloweens 1-6, excluding 3.
      • Halloween III: Season of the Witch, is really its own thing and has eternally been put into discontinuity from the series as it abandons the Myers storyline. The series was originally meant to be an All Hallows' Eve-themed anthology and H3 was the merely the next episode and references some thematic elements seen in the first two movies. Also, a Shout-Out briefly shows a TV commercial of the first movie playing within this one, making the first two movies as Type 2 films within a film. The next installment, H4 returned to the Michael Myers saga.
    • Then there's the "H20 Timeline" with Halloweens 1, 2, H20 and Resurrection since Halloween H20 ignores 3, 4, 5 and 6.
      • While they may be in Broad Strokes, certain aspects of Halloween H20 such as Laurie's fake death and the photos of (presumably) Michael's killings in Loomis' office vaguely add credence to a connection between Halloweens 4, 5 & 6 and H20. TPTB considered canonizing the last three films, but ultimately decided to drop them to restore the franchise to form. A draft of H20 even featured a scene with Laurie vomiting after hearing the news of her daughter, Jamie Lloyd's death.
    • Then we have the "Rob Zombie Timeline" a.k.a. the "Zombie-verse" with Rob Zombie's 2007 Reimagining of the original film and its sequel, completely separate from all previous entries.
    • Now there's the Halloween (2018) reboot timeline that only canonizes the first movie.
    • There are also Halloween comics, which may or may not canonize the film series or even each other, creating multiple, ambiguous, self-contained continuities.
  • Until the release of Simba's Pride, the cub raised at the end of The Lion King (1994) was described in all tie-in books as male, as opposed to the female Kiara in the sequel. Most famously, a series of books released soon after the first movie depicted the adventures of Simba's son Kopa. The series wasn't written by Disney though. Due to the fact Disney doesn't consider anything but the initial film canon, Simba and Nala have no less than three semi-canon cubs who are supposedly the same individual: Kopa from the aforementioned books, Kiara from the sequel, and their new son Kion from The Lion Guard.
  • Cited by many with the original Planet of the Apes franchise and Rise of the Planet of the Apes, even though Word of God said it was intened to be a prequel of sorts. They also described it as a reboot, though. There are essentially five timelines:
    • The original novel Planet of the Apes.
    • The original film franchise of Planet of the Apes (1968), Beneath the Planet of the Apes, Escape from the Planet of the Apes, Conquest of the Planet of the Apes, Battle for the Planet of the Apes and the Planet of the Apes live-action TV series. It can be debated that the live action TV series is not in the continuity of the films since it's shown to take place in California while the films were near New York City, and there's a dog in the TV series, even though they were all killed in the movie timeline (which may have just been an error). The human society in the TV series also lasted until at least the 25th century, which is inconsistent with Conquest / Battle though consistent with dialogue from Escape. There's also the interpretation that Conquest / Battle changed the original timeline where the rebellion was begun by an ape named Aldo (a name also used in Battle and the TV series for unrelated characters) after centuries of apes serving man. Battle ends with a merged ape/human society and not with humans reduced to animals.
    • The animated Return to the Planet of the Apes, which is closer to the original novel (the apes have technology and live much like humans), but not part of it.
    • The 2001 remake, Planet of the Apes (2001). It takes place on an actual alien planet, not Earth All Along.
    • Rise of the Planet of the Apes, although this one is debatable, given the comments of the producers and director versus Cornelius's dialogue in the 'Escape' film. It may or may not exist in the original franchise continuity.
    • A variety of comics that fit into various continuities. The original franchise spawned a bunch, and the 2001 reboot spawned a few, as did 'Rise'. The original film's comics also crossed with Alien Nation.
    • A possible fifth universe is the POTA videogame based on the original novel.
      • Granted, some fans do debate what exists where, and there really isn't a clear-clut consensus.
  • A lot of the events in Scott Pilgrim vs. The World are different from the comic book series, so the movie must take place in an alternate continuity.
  • The Universal Soldier films make up three continuities, all springing from the original 1992 Roland Emmerich film. Two Direct to Video sequels were made back-to-back in 1998, Universal Soldier II: Brothers In Arms and Universal Soldier III: Unfinished Business, starring none of the original cast. Jean-Claude Van Damme then came back in 1999 with Universal Soldier: The Return, which retconned the previous two but was itself poorly received and became the last film in the series to be released theatrically. Two further sequels were made even later which retconned The Return as well, brought back both Van Damme and Dolph Lundgren and went the Darker and Edgier route, Universal Soldier: Regeneration in 2010 and Universal Soldier: Day of Reckoning in 2012.
  • 101 Dalmatians has almost a dozen alternate continuities.
    • Dodie Smith's Novels have Pongo married to Missus, Perdita married to Prince, Cruella being married, the Dearly’s having Two Nannies, and the two Badduns being Saul & Jasper.
    • Disney's animated film renamed the Dearly's to Radcliffe and gave them one Nanny, Missis and Perdita became one character, Cruella isn't married, and Saul is renamed Horace. This film also got an "Animated" Sequel.
    • The live-action films are closer to the animated films, however, Roger (now Dearly again) designs video games rather than compose songs, and it's set in the late 1990s rather than the 1960s.
    • The animated TV series proceeds to become a mixture of all of the above, while also being set in the U S.
    • The video game, 102 Dalmatians: Puppies to the Rescue, takes place in a completely different continuity to the film it's supposedly based on, though with the "Animated" Film Style.
    • The short-lived musical is closer to the novel, but Saul is renamed Jinx, plus there is an alternate climax.
    • Both Pongo & Cruella appear in the Show; Once Upon a Time.
    • There is also the Continuity in Descendants, which has Cruella and her Son (with Tie In Books also featuring Pongo & Perdita).
    • Then, there is the Continuity of 101 Dalmatian Street which is in Cannon with only the first of the "Animated" Films.
  • Dumb and Dumber has 3 continuities all stemming from the original movie.
  • The Terminator franchise has several different continuities, to such an extent that even the original film isn't exempt from this. Various explanations have been given throughout the years in order to reconcile the different timelines, usually as a result of a Timey-Wimey Ball.
    • The "original altered timestream" comprises the first four movies: The Terminator, Terminator 2: Judgment Day, Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines and Terminator Salvation.
    • The Universal Studios attraction Terminator 2 3-D: Battle Across Time (1996) takes place after the events of T2, in an alternate continuity where Sarah and John have been conducting hit-and-run attacks against Cyberdyne for years. At the end of the attraction, John and the T-800 successfully destroy the T-1000000. Notably, this attraction was considered to be canon (according to Cameron himself) up until the release of T3.
    • Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles takes place in an alternate continuity which splits off just after the events of T2, with John and Sarah Connor leapfrogging twenty years into the future with the help of a friendly Terminator. Apart from cannibalizing certain plot elements of T3 (Sarah's cancer, a female Terminator, Judgment Day not averted), nothing else is counted as canon from the third film.
    • T2 and T3 also have book trilogies that create yet more alternate timelines, one from each movie.
    • The RoboCop Versus The Terminator Crossover and a number of other comics make their own continuity. Terminator: Salvation Final Battle definitely does.
    • Terminator Genisys creates a complete new timeline after altering the events of the first Terminator film, erasing the "original altered timestream" mentioned above and starting over.
    • Terminator: Dark Fate (2019) is a direct sequel to The Terminator (1984) and Terminator 2: Judgement Day (1991). That's it.
  • Maleficent, despite initially being presented as a Perspective Flip to Disney's Sleeping Beauty, is this regarding the 1959 film. Particularly, the second half of the film alters much of the original's plot, with the film's Narrator outright implying that the original story is something of an In-Universe Historical Villain Upgrade. For one thing, Maleficent survives in the end.
  • Assassin's Creed (2016): Averted. This film takes place in the same universe as the games and takes pains to acknowledge the larger mythology while not causing plot issues. Also, Ubisoft liked the film's production design so much they decided to try and incorporate some, especially the redesigned Animus, into future Assassin's Creed games.
  • The first four Batman films—Batman (1989), Batman Returns, Batman Forever, and Batman & Robin—can be processed as a single continuity, despite changes in actors, directors, and overall tone, and a lack of a definite story arc from one film to the next. However, The Dark Knight Trilogy clearly contradicts the earlier films in various details (e.g. the identity of the mugger who kills Bruce Wayne's parents) and definitely seems separate from any of those earlier films.

  • Animorphs has an Alternamorphs series featured two books, The First Journey and The Next Passage. They were structured in the form of a Gamebook-type story. In the first book, the reader became part of the group that gained the morphing power from Elfangor and joined the Animorphs on their first adventure. Upon completion of this, the story continued with an adventure involving a Sario rip (rip in time). The second book involved elements from two different Animorphs stories from around the midpoint. However, the books were structured in such a way that only a single set of possibilities allowed you to continue the story. Perhaps, for this reason, the series never really caught on, has been largely forgotten, and was discontinued after the second book.
    • There's also one in Megamorphs: Back to Before, where the kids were sent back so they could go another way home instead of through the construction site where they met Elfangor. Things turn out very differently from the main series.
  • The Wonderful Wizard of Oz was loosely translated into Russian. The translator modified the story as he as saw fit. When the story became popular, he wrote a series of books based on his translation of the first Oz book. Those books went in a different direction than the Oz books written by Baum, effectively making an alternate Oz universe.
  • While The Wicked Years may technically follow some of the events in the Oz books and movies, the vast difference between it and the Oz canon makes them another continuity.
  • Dexter has so many changes in cast (anywhere from who's alive and who's dead at a given point, to who's doing what job, to the gender of Dexter's child with Rita) and storyline that it's simpler to treat the novels and the television series as Alternate Continuity with each other. Trying to reconcile the two any other way is impossible.
  • The Hardy Boys have several different continuities, as the publishers try to keep the series relevant to modern kids. There's the "Blue Spines", which is the blue hardcover books & digests (and that's broken down to the Original Texts and the rewrites of the '70s), the Casefiles, Undercover Brothers, the Clues Brothers, the new Adventures series, and the second "Case files" series which has little to do with the first. There's even three different TV continuities, The Hardy Boys/Nancy Drew Mysteries of The '70s (the best known of the TV versions), the Mickey Mouse Club serials of the 50s, and The Hardy Boys Casefiles of the '90s.
  • The T2: Future War series (written by S.M. Sterling) disregards the events of the third film and places Sarah, John and a German resistance fighter (who evidently was/becomes the base model for the T-800/850 series) fighting T-model endoskeletons in present day America, and hide out while the Future War begins.
  • Terminator 3 had the same thing with its own three book trilogy, which kept the third film events, naturally, but placed John and Kate in a different timeline than the one which led to the events of Terminator Salvation.
  • Each of the three books in the Manifold series by Stephen Baxter features three different resolutions to the Fermi Paradox.
  • The Space Odyssey Series: 2010: Odyssey Two, 2061: Odyssey Three and 3001: The Final Odyssey by Arthur C. Clarke, despite their titles, take the original 2001: A Space Odyssey film (but not the original book) as canon and take place in different continuities from each other. (The first sequel formed the basis for the movie sequel to 2001, of course.)
  • Because Roald Dahl was unhappy with the first movie adaptation of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory in 1971, he arranged that the novel's Immediate Sequel Charlie and the Great Glass Elevator (which was published in 1972) would never have a film adaptation. Most adaptations of the book into other media, such as the 2005 film of Chocolate Factory, thus end on a note of complete closure — with Charlie and his family comfortably ensconced in the factory — rather than setting up the further adventures of Great Glass Elevator and a planned third book. They also disregard the more clearly deliniated personalities Dahl gave the other grandparents in the sequel in favor of coming up with their own approaches to the characters. Thus, these are all alternate continuities.
  • Modesty Blaise has two related continuities, both written by the same author. The novels came after the comic strip, and has a different method by which Modesty and Willie start working for Tarrant. Characters are created in one continuity and show up in the other a lot (Dinah Collier and Dr. Giles Pennyfeather both originated in the books). There's a lot that can be considered part of both, but a lot that can't. Gabriel is notable for how different things are: in the comics, he escapes twice from Modesty & Willie, while in the books after their first encounter, Gabriel has obviously lost a lot of his superiority, and eventually gets killed by another villain.
  • Dick Niglet & The Shit Wizards Of Asscabin features an alternate ending to The Vagina Ass of Lucifer Niggerbastard via world jumping.
  • The five Quantum Devil Saga: Avatar Tuner novels are all an alternate take on the Digital Devil Saga series of games. Or to be more precise, what the games where originally meant to be. Even better, the games themselves are spinoffs of Shin Megami Tensei.
  • Autobiography of Red contains two modernized retellings of the story of Geryon and Herakles. In one, which is closer to the original myth, Herakles kills Geryon. In the other, he seduces him and breaks his heart.
  • The Ultima novels feature new characters and settings inspired by the main games, along with different character interpretations and personalities.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Stargate features no less than three separate continuities:
  • The Red Dwarf novels take place in a different continuity to the TV series, in many cases incorporating concepts from the TV series with a different spin (and vice versa). The first two novels (Red Dwarf: Infinity Welcomes Careful Drivers (1989) and Better Than Life (1990)) were written by Rob Grant and Doug Naylor under the collective pen name Grant Naylor. After they dissolved their writing partnership, they wrote a Red Dwarf novel separately (Last Human (1995) by Naylor, and Backwards (1996) by Grant) which each acted as third novels in the series. This split the novel series into two Alternate Continuities.
  • Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles splits the Terminator franchise by taking the first two movies as backstory and almost completely ignoring the third, apart from cannibalizing certain plot elements (Sarah's cancer, a female Terminator, Judgment Day not averted). Then a fourth movie came out after the series, which has nothing to do with it and takes the third movie as canon.
    • The constant alteration of the timeline makes EVERYTHING work.
  • Power Rangers
  • The Kamen Rider franchise tends to weave back and for between Alternate Continuity and Shared Continuity. The Showa era (ranging from the original Kamen Rider to Black RX) were their own unified universe; Kamen Rider: Skyrider was planned to be a Continuity Reboot but plans fell through and it was tied in with the other shows. The 1990s movie trilogy of Shin Kamen Rider: Prologue, Kamen Rider ZO, and Kamen Rider J were also considered continuity reboots, but didn't go anywherenote . The Heisei Era Rider series from Kuuga to Kiva were separatenote  until Decade and the Den-O movies came out, not only creating a Shared Continuity along with the Showa Riders, but also creating Alternate Continuities for the Heisei Riders AND calling the Super Sentai franchise an Alternate Continuity to the Kamen Rider franchise.
    • Kamen Rider also has some internal examples thanks to its movies. While some avert Non-Serial Movie, others cannot be placed during the span of the original show for various issues. Kamen Rider Faiz and Kamen Rider Blade have movies that ask "What If? The Bad Guy Wins?" and "What if the series ended differently?", respectively. Likewise, Kamen Rider Wars depicts another alternate version of Faiz's final battlenote  which seems to have been rewritten mainly to give protagonist Takumi Inui Survivor Guilt.
  • Even the sitcom Mama's Family is an example of this. Originally developed on the "Family" segments on The Carol Burnett Show, Eunice Higgins and her acerbic mother Thelma Harper had their story first furthered on a brief special, In this version Ed later is shown to have divorced the feisty Eunice; still later Mama has died, leaving Eunice free to pursue her dreams of becoming an actress, until she's asked to stay and tend to Aunt Fran. It was a more dramatic take on the quarrelsome Higgins and Harpers, focusing more on Eunice and her broken dreams and hopes, and Mama is more bitter then she would be on the later series.
  • RoboCop
    • Both television series split off at various points in the film continuity and base their stories on different circumstances. In 1992's RoboCop 3, the film ends with OCP ostensibly being destroyed and the Delta City project falling through its initial stage (if not outright cancelled). RoboCop: The Series follows on from RoboCop 2, and assumes that OCP has already completed the Delta City project (which was one of the underlying threats of the original film) and is having to live with the consequences, while Robo is more directly tied to OCP interests and his immediate family. RoboCop: Prime Directives (as stated by the producers) only regards the original film as canon, and assumes Robo/Murphy survived a decade in service (and his son grew up without ever seeing his father, unlike the 1994 series), while OCP never fully went through with the Delta City project, letting the city languish instead.
    • There are also at least two separate RoboCop comic continuities, and neither of them makes clear what (other than the original movie) they consider to be canonical.
  • The BBC series The Inspector Lynley Mysteries was based on the novel series by Elizabeth George. While the pilot was about as close to a direct adaptation of the first book as could be expected in trimming a mammoth paperback into a three-hour, two-episode pilot, the television series made bigger and bigger alterations to the novels with every story. The second episode of the third series, A Traitor To Memory, was the last episode to be even loosely adapted from a George novel, and the show went in its own direction from that point on, making only fitful attempts to integrate later novel canon into the storyline (as they did with Helen Clyde's death). The most notable change was turning the closeness between Lynley and Havers Up to Eleven, to a point where a romantic relationship between the two seemed not just possible but logical, despite George's decree that they would never get together in the novels. The novels and show are now considered to be almost entirely separate entities; many Lynley/Havers shippers say that while they respect George's decision with regard to the novels, it has no bearing on the television characters.
  • This trope is one of the primary arguments against the Tommy Westphall Hypothesis that argues, based on the series finale of St. Elsewhere, that if that series was just young Tommy Westphall's dream, then any work even tangentially connected to the series occurred in the same universe and was thus also All Just a Dream. The existence of alternate continuities means that just because a character appears in two works, it does not mean that they share the same continuity.
  • Doctor Who has a number of these, many from the period between 1989 and 2005 fans have nicknamed the Wilderness Years.
    • The Movie (actually two movies) starring Peter Cushing as a Lighter and Fluffier *human* version of the Doctor literally called "Dr Who". (According to a novelization by Steven Moffat, these exist in the {{Whoniverse)) as fictional accounts of the Doctor's adventures.)
    • The Eighth Doctor (played by Paul McGann) had many off-screen adventures after he debuted in a failed Backdoor Pilot TV movie. These occurred in comics, novels and audio dramas, the latter from Big Finish Productions. For the most part, fans quietly ignore the comics and novels in favor of the audio dramas, though they could potentially all exist in the same continuity.
    • The Curse of Fatal Death'' by Steven Moffat, as the Ninth Doctor (but not the Ninth Doctor as played by Christopher Eccleston), played by Rowan Atkinson, burn through four regenerations in less than three minutes. It was a mini-story this Played for Laughs.
    • The late Wilderness Years Flash animation Scream of the Shalka, written by Paul Cornell, features a Ninth Doctor unlike the later canonical Ninth Doctor. It starred Richard E. Grant as this Doctor and had then-unknown David Tennant in a small role (because he insisted on it).
  • The 1980s Casablanca TV series is presented as a prequel to the film, but diverges from its canon by having Strasser and Heinz already present in Casablanca before the timeline of the film.
  • Hannibal: The first couple seasons contradict little from the books. They have an occasional Gender Flip and have significant plot points the books' backstory doesn't mention. Around Season 3, this trope is in full force: Will Graham takes over Clarice's role in the third book, before the plot of The Red Dragon has even happened, and Clarice doesn't seem to exist.
  • After Dallas infamously made a whole season All Just a Dream to bring Bobby Ewing Back from the Dead, its spinoff Knots Landing became this, due to the fact that Knots Landing used Bobby's death as a plot point. This rendered the spinoff incompatible that Dallas from there on in.
  • Call the Midwife is split into two Alternate Continuities: the original books, and the Live-Action TV adaptation, which goes down a different path from the original.
  • Shonda Land also relies on this trope:
  • The many recent New 10s shows based on DC comics works such as Gotham, Krypton, and Titans are set in their own universes, in contrast to the CW's Arrowverse, which sets Arrow, The Flash (2014) and Legends of Tomorrow in one shared world and Supergirl (2015) on one that regularly crosses over with them (The exception being Black Lightning, which was developed separately from the aforementioned shows and may still be connected to them somehow in the future).
  • Wonder Woman: The series created some things that had never existed in the comics to that time, such as the I.A.D.C., IRAC, and most of the villains. Some were played with, such as Wonder Girl. Zig-zagged in that the series's impact on public consciousness was such that some of these elements moved from the series to the comics and have survived the test of time. Wonder Woman's transformation sequence and the, um, look that Lynda Carter brought to the part are the most notable of these.

    Puppet Shows 
  • The Secret Life of Toys is a Spin-Off of The Christmas Toy, but it has Rugby, Balthasar, Mew and Ditz living in a different playroom, belonging to children named Penny and Simon instead of Jamie and Jesse, and with an otherwise different cast of toy companions (some of them Suspiciously Similar Substitutes: for example, rag doll Raisin in place of Apple and female rocking horse Hortense replacing male scooter horse Belmont).

  • In an extreme case, none of the adaptations of The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy are compatible. There are nine versions: the radio series, its novelizations, the TV series, the movie, the stage show, the comic, the LP albums, the computer game, and the ‘’towel’’. In fact Douglas Adams once said that he deliberately went out of his way to make sure that every iteration conflicted with every other iteration.
  • The first three episodes of Blake's 7: A Rebellion Reborn are a retelling of Series 1. While the basic outcomes and characterisation remain more or less the same (Blake is sent to Cygnus, then escapes on the Liberator), there are major changes to the setting and science fiction elements. Chief among these is the elimination of the teleport, which is replaced by a shuttle as budget is no longer a restriction, and the placement of the series in the 2200s (assuming Federation history is to be trusted, Blake's 7 had 700-year-old pioneer ships).
  • Journey into Space: The standalone instalments produced take place in different continuities from each other:
    • In The Return from Mars, the Discovery is caught in a time warp after leaving Mars at the end of The World in Peril and eventually returns to Earth in 2026, decades after they left.
    • In Frozen in Time, the Ares, crewed by Jet, Lemmy, Doc and Mitch, left Earth on June 8, 1973 and began a mission of exploration around The Solar System.
    • The Host also takes place in a different continuity from the original series. The Ares was launched approximately 100 years later, at some point between 2071 and 2079.

    Tabletop Games 
  • The RPG of The Dresden Files is, for the most part, set in the same continuity of the books, but the conceit of the books (that Billy is writing it at Harry's behest to educate muggles about the supernatural) requires that Billy learn things that Dresden wouldn't tell anyone in the continuity of the books.
  • When the Star Fleet Battles game was established in 1979, it was based on the entirety of Star Trek canon that existed at the time, which is to say the original series, the animated series, and an assortment of Fan Fiction. As the canon expanded and matured over the decades, the result was that SFB, which only had a license for said pre-1979 canon, came to be an Alternate Continuity where the movies and spinoff series are disregarded.

    Theme Parks 
  • Skull Island: Reign of Kong at Universal's Islands of Adventure, despite being based heavily on the 2005 film, is set in a different continuity where the existence of Skull Island is made public years before the film took place, which eventually leads to an expedition of the island being set up and broadcast to the world.
  • Star Tours: The Adventure Continues can be considered this for the general Star Wars canon. It was initially set to take place between the prequel and original trilogies, but, as, of 2015, guests receive help from Finn and BB-8 and fly around the wrecked Imperial Star Destroyers on Jakku. Never mind the fact that C3P0 and R2D2 are working for a travel agency. It's not really meant to be taken seriously as a canonical ride, as opposed to its predecessor, the original Star Tours.
    • In fact, this can be applied to most Disney Theme Parks rides that are based off a pre-existing property but don't necessarily tell the story of that property, or when meeting characters that wouldn't really fit in the area you find them (such as Mary Poppins and Bert in Main Street, USA - a small town based on Walt's childhood in Missouri).

  • Transformers has had this since day 1; while Marvel's original cartoon and comic from 1984 share the same characters, setting, and premise, they tell completely different and irreconcilable stories, and new continuities keep sprouting to the extent that fans group them into higher-order sets to make sense of it all. Hasbro at one point canonized this with the concept of a universal stream, groups of universes that more or less correspond to the existing franchises (and also include GoBots and Robotix)... and then apparently de-canonized with with the launch of the Prime franchise, apparently because alternate universes were confusing and boring.
    • Possibly re-canonized - Unicron, Primus and the big Thirteen are back in as we know and love them (With some minor changes to specifics). In fact, it's the only mainline series to address the Thirteen (they as a group were thus far confined to collector's club exclusive comics, though a couple of existing characters were revealed to be in their ranks.)
      • The stance until recently was that universal streams and the multiverse and all that are untouched, but things in the current version of the franchise are not part of or connected to any of it. (This is problematic due to a few places where they do intersect, most notably the Rise of the Dark Spark video game, and subject to change). One suspects they did this mainly to get around the issue of "multiversal singularities", especially where the Thirteen (and Alpha Trion in particular) were concerned.note  That stance has since changed, and the current incarnation of the franchise is now treated as part of the multiverse that was blocked off from the rest until recently, according to the new version of "Ask Vector Prime".
  • Monster High has several continuities: the doll's diaries, the cartoon series, and the novel series by Lisi Harrison. The diaries and the webisodes seem to follow the same plot line, and there is some debate over whether the TV specials are part of the same continuity as the webisodes. The novels, meanwhile, follow a completely different story.
  • Every My Little Pony generation takes place in an Alternate Continuity from the others before it. G1 in particular had many AUs - My Little Pony Tales, the toys, My Little Pony 'n Friends, the different books, and the British comics.
    • The G3 cartoons take place in a vastly different continuity from the books. The books may be meant to be in the toy continuity.
    • On top of that, G3 and G3.5 are hard to reconcile. They did way more than change the animation style; Rainbow Dash gets not just a new actress but completely different way of speaking to the point of not seeming like the same character at all, and Cheerilee has gone from the leader of Unicornia to an apparently teenage earth pony from Ponyville with a sister who never existed before (and she too gets a new VA.) The main team contains a unicorn and a pegasus where before the three races lived in separate cities; if we take the "Newborn Cuties" web shorts into account, they've all known each other from the time they were were babies; they even got to watch Sweetie Belle being created. This is naturally at odds with not knowing about unicorns until Rarity accidentally teleported herself into Ponyville, or about pegasi until Star Catcher became very good friends with Skywishes and they eventually talked the somewhat xenophobic pegasi into coming out of the shadows. If you treat it as an alternate continuity, and say that Pinkie Pie's being unchanged - make no mistake, she's the only returning character who is unchanged - is a Mythology Gag similar to Peter Cullen playing Optimus Prime in G1, the film series, and Prime despite those series clearly being unconnected, suddenly it all makes sense.
    • My Little Pony Generation 4 takes place in yet another continuity, though it contains a few Mythology Gags to prior generations, especially G1. To what degree the comic fits in is unknown; it ties in to show events quite well at times but also has some contradictory elements.
  • The 1998-2002 version of the Furby toy came from Furbyland, while the 2005-2007 version of the Furby came from Furby Island. There was even a TV special called Furby Island that aired on Nickelodeon in the fall of 2005, where a family discovers the island.
  • BIONICLE has two official continuities:
    • Generation 1, which ran from 2001 - 2011.
    • Generation 2, which ran from 2015 - 2016. Gen 2 contained multiple Easter Eggs which implied a connection to Gen 1 in some way via the Mask of Time, but it was Cut Short before this connection could be confirmed or denied.

    Video Games 
  • The Double Dragon games have many plot differences between their original arcade incarnations and their corresponding NES counterparts. Every game in the series since the SNES-exclusive Super Double Dragon was stand-alone, until Arc System Works' Double Dragon IV, following the continuity of the first two games in the series.
  • DragonFable appears to be in a different timeline from AdventureQuest, since in DragonFable the Great Fire War started before Battleon was founded. This has been confirmed by the devs.
    • As well, The'Galin is never mentioned in DragonFable, and likewise AdventureQuest never mentions Sepulchure.
    • Oh, and did we forget to mention that AdventureQuest has a completely different map?
  • Most of the Final Fantasy games are set in different worlds from each other and most of the stories have nothing to do with each other.
    • Final Fantasy VII Remake is a more specific example. At the outset it looks like it's just going to be straight remake of the 1997 original with better graphics and more content, but then Sephiroth shows up much earlier than he's supposed to, seemingly possessing knowledge of the "original timeline" and trying to derail the plot to avoid his original defeat. These efforts result in the Planet sending out ghostly beings dubbed Whispers to try and keep things on track, but the game ends with the heroes being tricked into destroying the Whispers, essentially destroying fate itself — not to mention creating an Alternate Timeline where Zack Fair survived his Last Stand in Crisis Core.
  • In 2017, Warner Bros. created a subsidiary of its interactive entertainment called Portkey Games dedicated to making games set in the Harry Potter franchise. However both WB and Portkey’s official stance is that the games are only “inspired by” the universe and should not be considered canon. These games include: Harry Potter: Hogwarts Mystery , Harry Potter: Wizards Unite, and the upcoming Hogwarts Legacy RPG.
  • The Silent Hill series has one main continuity, but much Silent Hill media exists outside of it in mutually-exclusive sub-continuities. The movie exists in its own, Silent Hill: Shattered Memories exists in its own (both are divergent re-interpretations of the first game). The Play Novel and the older comics exist in their own continuities as well. Thankfully, the main continuity is given clear precedence over the splinters: hence, no Continuity Snarl.
  • The Simpsons video games:
    • The Simpsons Game is set in a continuity where The Simpsons discover they are video game characters.
    • The Reveal in The Simpsons: Hit & Run makes it clear that it cannot take place in the show's continuity. The aliens Kang and Kodos are behind the plot and they start a Zombie Apocalypse in the final level. Aliens and zombies were at most one-off gags or kept to the Treehouse of Terror episodes of the show. The last missions also suggest that Professor Frink, Snake, and Abe die sacrificing themselves to stop Kang and Kodos, when they're all alive in the main series.
  • Ultima Online is set in an Alternate Continuity wherein the Avatar never returned to Britannia after the events of the first Ultima game. This screws the countinuity around in countless ways, since he wasn't the Avatar until Ultima IV, and it is indeed possible that the Stranger in the first three games was a different person, or several different people, and the map of Britannia was completely different in each game until it finally took somewhat consistent shape in Ultima IV. And regardless of none of this happening, there's still Britannia in the shape and culture as was defined in Ultima IV, rather than the previous iterations.
  • The Metal Gear series has a few alternate continuities. There are two alternate sequels to the original 8-bit game: Snake's Revenge for NES (which was actually the first sequel released, as Hideo Kojima hadn't planned on making one) and Metal Gear: Ghost Babel for Game Boy Color (simply known as "Metal Gear Solid" outside Japan).
    • Metal Gear Ac!d is an Alternate Continuity based on Metal Gear Solid. All it really has in common is a quasi-real-world setting, and the main character, whose personality and backstory are both softened slightly. By the second Acid they'd abandoned all premise of a real-world setting and thrown in lots of cyborgs, People Jars and all sorts of mayhem. This time Solid Snake wasn't even the same character from the previous game - he looked the part and had the same name but turned out to be a biological machine made in Solid Snake's likeness.
  • In a partially successful effort to reboot the Spyro the Dragon franchise, The Legend of Spyro completely discards all continuity from the previous games except the two main characters, Spyro and Sparx, who still go through major changes in appearance and personality. The developers have gone as far as calling the first game A New Beginning to highlight this.
    • They're clearly throwing in a lot of shout outs, with Sparx in A New Beginning eating butterflies, and the appearance of Hunter - originally a character in Spyro 2.
    • Then, another reboot was attempted with Skylanders: Spyro's Adventure, which introduces as many protagonists the players can manage to get.
    • It can be argued that the post-Playstation classic era games take place in an AU from the originals, due to several continuity and characterization differences.
  • The Kirby anime (dubbed as Kirby: Right Back at Ya!) is a separate universe from the games though its overall plot can be seen as a loose adaptation of Kirby's Dream Land and Kirby's Adventure with King Dedede and Nightmare as the main antagonists.
  • The Shin Megami Tensei franchise has multiple active continuities still getting releases, with even more continuities currently lying fallow. A full breakdown of all these continuities (and how they may or may not fit together) is available on the SMT page.
  • SNK's The King of Fighters started off as a Massive Multiplayer Crossover between several of their game franchises, but took liberties in order to actually let this happen. For example, Art of Fighting took place in the late 1970snote , but KOF shifted the events up 20 years and resorted to Broad Strokes to keep the cast young and active. Likewise, Fatal Fury Big Bad Geese Howard died in that series, but is still alive in KOF. Eventually, KOF evolved into its own distinct continuity, especially as more emphasis was placed on the Original Generation characters like Kyo Kusanagi, K', and Ash Crimson. On top of that, King of Fighters EX for the Gameboy Advance and the 3D KOF: Maximum Impact each exist within their own separate continuities.
  • Tomb Raider features three distinct, main continuities and a handful of "sub-continuities":
  • Virtua Quest is a spin-off game from Virtua Fighter. It is a RPG that takes place in the future about a boy who uses "Virtua Soul" to use digital versions of the Virtua Fighters to combat Judgement Six.
  • The Pokémon franchise consists of several different sets of continuities:
  • The spin-off Klonoa titles are all set in alternate continuities from the main series.
  • Ghostbusters: The Video Game considers the original two Ghostbusters films as canon, with several references even to minor details in those films. It does not consider The Real Ghostbusters to be canonical, as most of the characters are depictions of the actors from the movies, instead of the radically different cartoon characters. However, it does borrow some ideas from the cartoon, such as the idea that all Ghosts are made of slime/ectoplasm, and they don't keep Slimer as a friend/pet, but they DO keep him in his own cage separate from the main containment facility.
  • Sonic the Hedgehog: For a long-running franchise, it managed to break the barrier of having over fifteen continuities, all within their own canon.
    • We have four separate cartoon series: The comedy and slapstick based Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog, the more dramatic Sonic SatAM, Sonic Underground, and Sonic Boom the latter of which also has two tie-in video games and a tie-in comic book.
    • The Sonic X anime series. It also had its own tie-in comic book... that is actually set in the Archie continuity mentioned below (albeit in a separate dimension).
    • A largely self-contained OVA series.
    • At least two manga series.
    • The live-action movie and its in-development sequel.
    • The long-running Sonic the Hedgehog Archie Comics which was originally based on the SatAM cartoon and later diverged into its own continuity. It has been going since 1993, including various Day in the Limelight spinoffs such as Knuckles the Echidna and Sonic Universe.
    • The recent IDW Sonic comics, despite using Sonic Forces as a starting point, are also within their own separate continuity, with game events already having happened (albeit possibly in a different way).
    • In the UK there's the Fleetway Sonic the Comic that ran from 1993-2002 and a collection of stand-alone comic strips which aren't part of that continuity. the novels, a series of Gamebooks by the same writers but forming their own continuity (which includes an Adaptation Expansion of the second Mega Drive game).
    • As for the games, those may even take place in two separate canons as the console titles and handheld titles do not seem to be happening in the same timeline and often contradict each other. That's not even counting games that may not even be considered official canon.
  • SNK/Playmore has released a bunch of Japan only cellphone games- many of them Dating Sims or Raising Sims that feature alternate versions of characters from its vast Fighting Game library. The Alternate Continuity is especially accented for example, in the games that take place in modern times but have characters from Samurai Spirits show up- quite often as the male protagonist's potential romantic interest. Or in the case of Iroha for one Raising Sim, as a plain old human version that you strive to make the damned best maid in the world.
  • Fist of the North Star: Lost Paradise features an alternate take on the Fist of the North Star mythos. Instead of wandering the wastes from one settlement to the next, the game takes place in the city of Eden and the surrounding wastes. Characters and events from the manga also appear, but how those events unfold differ from the manga series and are set against the backdrop of the game's new story.
  • Alone in the Dark: The New Nightmare is in a different continuity than the original series, but the 2008 game is a direct sequel, with Carnby having been kept in stasis by Lucifer since 1938.
  • NieR is an Alternate Continuity sequel of Drakengard. While Drakengard 2 happened in the A Ending, where the world is mostly saved, NieR's world happens after the Mind Screw E Ending, where Caim and Angelus end up in Tokyo. According to backstory, Caim and Angelus are actually responsible for devastating the world (Just like he would've wanted).
  • Red Dead Redemption was a pretty awesome Wild West sandbox game in its own right, but the creators apparently had a lot more cooked up for John Marston, because then Red Dead Redemption: Undead Nightmare came out six months later. Same Wild West setting, but Marston now has to fight zombies in an Alternate Continuity.
  • F-Zero has its main continuity with F-Zero, F-Zero X and F-Zero GX. Its alternate continuities are F-Zero: Maximum Velocity (which takes place 25 years after the events of the first game) and F-Zero: GP Legend (which takes place in 2201, as opposed to the 26th century). GP Legend was received lukewarmly by most fans in the West because of the changes despite being a clear alternate universe.
  • One of the more common explanations for why so little of PC-98 games have shown up since Touhou moved to Windows is that they're in a separate continuity. Though the PC-98 games barely had continuity...
    • The two main characters and a few other characters and (arguably) locations do return, but they're... drawn a bit differently. Theories abound, this trope being one of them.
  • Tron 2.0 was considered the sequel to TRON, until it was rendered non-canon by TRON: Legacy. The prequel comic TRON: Betrayal and Flynn Lives ARG tie-in shows computer scientist Lora Baines Bradley is alive and well by the time of TRON: Legacy.
  • Bioshock Infinite takes place in another continuity rather than the main BioShock setting. This is actually an important plot point.
  • Jeff Wayne's War of the Worlds differs from the book and the rock opera that inspired it by taking place in an alternate universe where the humans aren't quite so outmatched, and the Martians remembered to take their flu shots.
  • In Disgaea: Hour of Darkness, the good ending is considered canon but, the game Prinny: Can I Really Be the Hero? is canon from the "normal" ending. You can tell considering that Prinny Laharl shows up as a boss.
    • The Disgaea anime is a re-telling of sorts of the first game, but with countless differences.
  • Two versions of the fourth Ys game (both of which were outsourced by Falcom) were produced concurrently, Ys IV: Mask of the Sun for the Super Famicom (Falcom's previous canonical version) and Ys IV: The Dawn of Ys for the PC Engine CD. They have the same characters and places but are completely different in terms of plot. Years later, Falcom made an internally developed version of Ys IV called Ys: Memories of Celceta, which replaces Mask of the Sun, though it has more in common with that game than The Dawn of Ys.
  • The Harvest Moon games aren't known for having a steady timeline but there are several different continuities at least. The original SNES game shares a continuity with Harvest Moon 64 and Tree of Tranquility, the Distaff Counterpart versions are in different continuities with each other, Friends of Mineral Town take place in the same continuity as A Wonderful Life and DS, the two Game Boy games take place in one continuity of their own...
  • Jet Set Radio and Jet Set Radio Future most likely take place in separate continuities.
  • There are three continuities in the Twisted Metal series: the original continuity (comprising 1, 2, and Head-On), the universe Black is set in (a Darker and Edgier universe; there was supposed to be a sequel to this one called "Harbor City" but it never came to be), and the universe of the 2012 reboot (so far the only game in its continuity). 3 and 4 have been written out of continuity.
  • Devil May Cry has the original universe and the universe that DmC: Devil May Cry is set in.
  • Sword Art Online has an Alternate Continuity videogame series started with Sword Art Online Infinity Moment made by Banpresto. The game starts off with Kirito killing Heathcliff, however the game still doesn't get cleared unlike how it was in the series proper due to strange glitching in the system, and thus the players must climb up to floor 76 and beyond. It later received an Updated Re Release in Sword Art Online Hollow Fragment, which added on several more story elements, and the sequels, Lost Song and Hollow Realization, take place after the events of Hollow Fragment. Many of the differences include Leafa and Sinon being dragged into SAO thanks to the glitches, Sugo (aka Oberon) taking over as the Big Bad of Aincrad, two new heroines named Philia and Strea joining the main gang, the Alfheim arc changing thanks to Sugo going to jail early, a whole new VRMMO called Sword Art Origin coming out, and Yuuki Konno not dying like in canon.
  • According to Firaxis Games, XCOM: Enemy Unknown is a separate continuity from the original XCOM series, with 2K Marin's The Bureau: XCOM Declassified serving as a prequel to Enemy Unknown.
  • The Legend of Zelda has a confirmed 3 timelines branching from the end of Ocarina of Time: one timeline continues from the future after Link defeats Ganon and returns to his own time, leaving Hyrule with no hero (leading to The Wind Waker), one follows the past after Young Link uses the skills and knowledge he gained as an adult to stop Ganon before he gained power (leading to Majora's Mask), and one results from Link's defeat during Ocarina's final battle against Ganon (leading to A Link to the Past). Ultimately, the events of Breath of Wild will happen at the end of all these timelines.
    • Hyrule Warriors is a Dynasty Warriors-style game set in yet another Zelda continuity, with no direct ties to the other games but featuring items and characters from all throughout the franchise co-existing in a single world. Sort of like a Super Robot Wars version of Zelda.
  • The backstory to Star Trek Online borrows a number of story details from the Star Trek Novelverse note , but other details are very different. note 
  • The Castlevania: Lords of Shadow series takes place in a different continuity than the previous Castlevania games. The relationship between the series' heroes the Belmonts and the Big Bad Dracula is fundamentally different in that Dracula is a Belmont and the Fallen Hero of the first Lords of Shadow game.
  • The Matrix: Path of Neo either slightly and/or drastically alters, extends or creates all new events and endings to certain scenes from The Matrix. Plus, from the ending Neo lives, which he doesn't in the films. So, it definitely fits this trope.
  • Yu-Gi-Oh! Reshef of Destruction is an alternate version of the Yu-Gi-Oh! anime's season 4. Its prequel, Yu-Gi-Oh! The Sacred Cards, was an alternate season 2.
  • Lufia: Curse of the Sinistrals is an alternate-continuity remake of Lufia II: Rise of the Sinistrals, sharing the same general plotline but taking place in a different world with different lore. The game still includes Mythology Gags to other games in the main Lufia series.
  • Sands of Destruction started out as a video game, but while they were producing the game, they decided making The Anime of the Game would be a good way to promote it. A second team produced the anime, and was either given very old copies of game scripts, or else was told to simply do as they pleased, as even characterization is very different. The setting is largely the same, and even somewhat follows the order of places visited to a degree, but what happens in each location is very different. For example, Kyrie doesn't die in the anime. A manga was later released as well, and while it starts out seeming to follow the game, it quickly veers off in its own direction, too. Most fans consider the game to be the "real" canon, but not all of them, and arguments about the merits of the anime are Flame Bait.
  • Undertale establishes that each time the player resets the game, starts a new playthrough, or reloads, they're creating a new timeline. Oh, and some characters have Ripple Effect-Proof Memory.
  • The Neptunia series makes heavy use of this, with almost every game outside of the main entries taking place in its own continuity, as well the anime and some manga/light novels with each having its own self-contained continuity. As for the "main" series, the first game and its remake is set in its own continuity entirely (known as the "Super Dimension"), while Hyperdimension Neptunia mk2, Hyperdimension Neptunia Victory, and Megadimension Neptunia VII (alongside their respective remakes) are connected via the cast of mk2 (collectively from the "Hyper Dimension") interacting with and ending up in Alternate Universes in both Victory (known as the "Ultra Dimension") and VII (known as the "Zero Dimension" and "Heart Dimension" which are actually constructs created by a native of the Hyper Dimension). In a way, it shows off the good and bad of this trope, with the good being they can play around with gameplay and settings while keeping the core characters intact and the bad that there's a bit of plotline and character development recycling.
  • The original Super Robot Wars saga had an alternate continuity as well. The original saga was Super Robot Wars 2, Super Robot Wars 3, Super Robot Wars EX and Super Robot Wars 4. Later on, 2 and 4 had remakes, 2G and the F and F Final sagas. 2G added in Mobile Suit Victory Gundam and Mobile Fighter G Gundam while F and F Final added in Mobile Suit Gundam Wing, Aim For The Top Gunbuster, Neon Genesis Evangelion and gave us Mazinkaiser.
  • YandereDev imagines the Mission Mode of Yandere Simulator as one of these to the game proper, as in Mission Mode Yandere-chan isn't a Yandere, but an assassin for hire.
  • Batman: The Telltale Series takes some rather large liberties with the Batman mythology, as among other things, Harvey Dent becomes mayor, it's one of the times the death of the Waynes is an assassination, the Penguin was a childhood friend of Bruce's, and both Thomas Wayne and Vicki Vale underwent Adaptational Villainy with Thomas having been in league with Carmine Falcone and Hamilton Hill, and Vicki Vale being a biological member of the Arkham family, her parents being killed by Thomas, suffering abuse from her adopted parents, and leading a revolt against Gotham's elite because of these things. Also, depending on a choice made towards the end of episode five, either Alfred or Bruce himself will bear a constant reminder of the events of the game. The second season takes it even further: besides killing prominent Bat-Mythos characters like Lucius Fox and the Riddler, the player's choices determine whether Lucius' daughter Tiffany becomes the first Batgirl or a bitter vigilante willing to kill crooks, whether the Joker becomes a heroic vigilante (albeit not a very good one) rather than a psychotic mass murderer as normal, and whether Bruce will continue being Batman at the cost of his surrogate father Alfred walking away from the whole thing.
  • The tie-in games of the The Amazing Spider-Man Series ultimately became this because of The Amazing Spider-Man 2. The first game was intended to take place after the first movie and features Alistair Smythe as the main villain, Black Cat as a sidequest, and a human/rhino hybrid version of... well, the Rhino. Then despite approving of the use of those characters in the game, Sony went around and changed their minds as the second movie featured a still-breathing Smythe as pre-Electro Max Dillion's boss, Felicia Hardy as Harry's personal assistant, and a more traditional version of the Rhino at the beginning and end of the movie, so the second game retold the events, but set in the universe the first game established, with the movie's main villains Electro and Green Goblin being Demoted to Extra, Gwen Stacy being Adapted Out, and the main villains being The Kingpin and Carnage.
  • The Super Smash Bros. games have a canon all to themselves, which was first really introduced in the story mode for Super Smash Bros. Brawl.
  • Spider-Man: Shattered Dimensions sees a Broad Strokes taken with its versions of the universes present, as among other things, it shows an adult Miguel O'Hara from the regular 2099 universe, yet also with Kron Stone as Scorpion a la Timestorm as opposed to Venom, and the Noir versions of the Green Goblin and Vulture still being alive. Additionally, the DS version doesn't feature the Ultimate universe, and has different villains as Amazing!Peter fights Electro and Tinkerer, Noir!Peter fighting Boomerang and Calypso, Miguel dealing with Vulture and a still-living Silvermane, and Amazing!Peter fighting Mysterio at the end alone.
  • Spider-Man: Edge of Time sees a reality where Peter and MJ are still together, yet elements of Brand New Day are used, such as Anti-Venom. Additionally, the DS version features yet again, a different plot with some of the basic elements in common, such as trying to prevent Anti-Venom from killing Peter being removed, making the plot sorely about stopping Walker Sloan's plans, and it features more villains, including Peter meeting 2099 versions of Arcade, Big Wheel, and Overdrive, while Miguel fights the Shocker and Menace. Additionally, as opposed to Peter fighting an army cloned from Black Cat, Miguel has to protect the real Felicia Hardy; it's the Rhino who merges with Sloan and Doctor Octopus to make Atrocity in place of Anti-Venom; and there's no psychotic future version of Peter.
  • Wolfenstein is a rather confusing case. There is the original series by Muse Software, a 3D series by id Software, a reboot by id and its sequel by Raven and another series by Machinegames that acts both as a sequel to both series and as a reboot. The latter two series seem to form an alternate timeline yet the Machinegames series apparently reboots the reboot series.
  • Yo-Kai Watch has the games, the anime (and its movies which have an important plot to animated media), and the manga. Notably, some plots from the game and the anime get referenced and renditioned in each other, such as Episodes 25, 47, 77, 88, the first three movies (though loosely in this case), and the Busters T Arc. Likewise, there are special manga volumes which serve as tie-ins for each of the movies.
  • The Inazuma Eleven Ares no Tenbin series is an alternate continuity of the second game from the original series, where aliens never attacked the earth. Because of that, some things change, like Fubuki Atsuya and Kira Hiroto being Spared by the Adaptation note . Episode 27 of the anime (the episode where aliens debuted) is also be remade as a special episode named "Inazuma Eleven Reloaded".
  • Doom: The original Doom, Doom II: Hell on Earth, and Doom 64 (plus various associated WADs) all take place in the same continuity: Basically, The Legions of Hell invade the Union Aerospace Corporation space station on Phobos thanks to teleportation experiments that used Hell as an Extra-Dimensional Shortcut, and then go on to invade Earth. However, other continuities add their own twist to this.
    • The novels start out paralleling the video games. However, the monsters are alien bio-robots, controlled by a race of Plant Aliens, rather than literal demons from Hell.
    • The 2005 movie has the monsters result from a Supersoldier project conducted by pre-historic humans on Mars, which leads to a Zombie Apocalypse when it bonded to and supercharged "genetic markers for evil."
    • Doom 3 returns to literal demons from literal Hell because of teleportation fuckery, but this time the UAC base is on Mars proper. Also, the project head intentionally let them through as part of his Faustian pact with Hell, rather than the demons showing up because of a teleporter accident. Rather than a ballz-to-the-wallz action shooter, it's a System Shock-like Survival Horror game.
    • Played with by DOOM (2016) and Doom Eternal. This time, the UAC isn't messing around with teleporters, but mining "Argent Energy" from Hell in order to solve an energy crisis on Earth, only it to corrupt several of their employees into becoming Hell worshipers. There's also some new backstory involving the ancient civilization of Argent D'Nur, which fought against Hell in ages past. However, the Doom Slayer himself is revealed in Eternal to be the exact same Doomguy from the original games, just transported somehow into an alternate dimension sometime after the end of 64. Interestingly, Hell itself is now implied to connect to all dimensions across spacetime, meaning that even Doom 3 might be connected to the other games.
  • Prince of Persia has at least 5 continuities: the original trilogy consisting of Prince of Persia, Prince of Persia 2 and Prince of Persia 3D, the Sands of Time saga consisting of The Sands of Times, Warrior Within, The Two Thrones, Battles of Prince of Persia and the four different versions of The Forgotten Sands, the short lived 2008 Reboot consisting of Prince of Persia (2008) and The Fallen King, the movie and the Comic Book.
  • Grand Theft Auto has three different alternate continuities nicknamed The 2D Era, The 3D Era and The HD Era respectively. The 2D Era begins with Grand Theft Auto (Classic) and ends with Grand Theft Auto 2. The 3D Era chronogically begins with Grand Theft Auto: Vice City Stories, goes on to Grand Theft Auto: Vice City, Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas, Grand Theft Auto: Liberty City Stories, Grand Theft Auto Advance and ends on Grand Theft Auto III. The HD Era begins with Grand Theft Auto IV and has so far continued with Grand Theft Auto IV: The Lost and Damned, Grand Theft Auto IV: The Ballad of Gay Tony, Grand Theft Auto: Chinatown Wars and Grand Theft Auto V.
    • But Wait, There's More! The 2D Era also had Grand Theft Auto London 1961 and Grand Theft Auto London 1969, which are expansion packs to Grand Theft Auto (Classic), making them the two oldest GTA games when it comes to the franchise's general chronology.
  • When Ubisoft took over the Might and Magic franchise, they billed their new, entirely fantasy, setting of Ashan as a Continuity Reboot, which is true insofar as Heroes campaigns and most other spin-offs are concerned... but not always true for individual Heroes scenarios, of which multiple ones that come with the games take place in the classic New World Computing continuity. Might & Magic X implies that the new and classic continuities all are in the same Verse and simply separated by where they take place, but as Ashan does its own thing and has, if it does share the common backstory, forgotten it, effectively it acts as an Alternate Continuity.
  • There are at least four different continuities in the Rayman games:
    • The first game takes place in a surreal, cartoony world where everyone has Floating Limbs. Some characters, like the Magician, Taryazan and the Musician and his family, are even of the same species as Rayman.
    • Then there is the Rayman 2: The Great Escape universe that serves as the setting for all subsequent games (Rayman M, Rayman 3 and including the first three Raving Rabbids games, a slightly more realistic fantasy realm. There are no ties to the universe or storyline from the first game and Rayman is now the only limbless character, which is explicityl noted to make him stand out in the backstory.note 
    • Then there is the TV series which has yet another different cast and universe. The presence of Admiral Razorbeard, the antagonist of Rayman 2, suggests that it might have tied into the main universe had it been allowed to run for more than four episodes.
    • Rayman Origins and its sequel Rayman Legends, which combine elements of the first two universes (the tv series is still out of luck) as an attempt at Canon Welding. Origins was originally supposed to be a prequel, however the story and setting and up contradicting earlier games, for example by changing charcters like the Magician into a Teensie. In effect this ends up being a fourth continuity.
  • While Batman: Arkham Asylum initially seemed consistent with the history of the comics, Batman: Arkham City is where it diverged, presenting Bruce's confrontation with Hugo Strange as the first time they'd fought. Batman: Arkham Knight confirms this as all three games tell End of an Era stories about the final years of Bruce Wayne as Batman in that universe.
  • DC Universe Online is an odd one. When it first started, it was already something of an alternate universe as it took place in a post-Infinite Crisis universe with a few changes (like Barry Allen being the Flash). As of 2020, it's become a strange mish-mash of Silver Age, pre-Flashpoint and DC Rebirth eras.
  • Star Trek Online is an odd one. When the game came out, it ran on the idea that Star Trek Countdown was canon, thus continued with that path with things like Data being alive inside B4, Picard becoming an ambassador before retiring and others. However, with Star Trek: Picard, the game was firmly placed in this slot, even if canon dictated that only series on the big and small screens on canon.

    Visual Novels 
  • Giant spoiler warning for Ever17 to the extent if you know this ahead of time, story is ruined for you. Subverted. All events of the original four paths actually happen plus some stuff they leave out to avoid ruining the climax. They're tied together by happening on two different points in the timeline plus an attempted fix so that the ending would be less bittersweet/downer, depending on the route.

    Web Animation 
  • Doctor Who web animations:
    • The line often taken with Death Comes to Time is that it takes place in another continuity, due to Time Lords being Reality Warpers instead of Sufficiently Advanced Aliens and the 7th Doctor dying. Though some use this to consider the TV Movie and New Who non-canon.
    • The next web animation, Scream of the Shalka, was originally a story to celebrate the 40th anniversary with Richard E. Grant as the official Ninth Doctor. However the revival of the series meant it went into non-canon status and so is now considered alternate continuity.
  • Lobo Webseries R-rated and raunchy feel diverts away from the Lighter and Softer DCAU.
  • According to Word of God, each Bunnykill installment takes place in a continuity separate from the others.
  • SMG4's Mario Bloopers: All of it pretty much screams "Different Universe" in this series.

    Web Comics 
  • Crimson Latex was cancelled, but all the characters were later re-used for Collar 6.
  • Ultima-Java originally had a multiverse, however since January 2010, the concept of a multiverse has been removed. However the pre-reboot continuity titled Universe 2, is still considered an alternate continuity to the main comic Ultima-Java: History.
  • Dragon Ball Multiverse: Though the comic has rarely touched upon some of the more interesting stories, presumably out of suspense. One arguable point is that the author has complaints about things that didn't make sense in the original story. Now, despite having alternate universes be the ultimate fan fiction tool, Universe 3 is strange. In this universe, Bardock gets his psychic powers in a different method and leads a successful rebellion against Frieza.

    Web Original 
  • Red Panda Adventures — The original "Panda Squadron" series. It's a much hammier, wackier version featuring the Red Panda as an agent if the Canadian government fighting the Nazis. It crosses over with the main continuity in the episode "The World Next Door", when the Squadron's Baboon McSmoothie comes to the main universe to get an item necessary to fight the Nazis in his universe.
  • The rebooted Darwin's Soldiers RP on Furtopia (not the first incarnation) takes place in a different continuity than the trilogy and the original first RP. In turn, the trilogy is a different continuity than Furtopia RPs.
  • Trinton Chronicles has three so far since 1999, and rumor states may end up with a 4th.
  • MSF High Forum: The IRC channels are another place to role-play with one's characters, and things often go in a completely different direction than on the forum itself. Certain notable examples: Jax has the memory of his old life back, Robin is a Legion, Karn is actually a nice guy, and don't get us started on Demona...
  • The Reset Button is applied to the Neurotically Yours comic and now shows what the life of Germaine is like if she focused on getting a job and improving her life instead of staying in expensive city doing nothing but poetry.

    Western Animation 
  • Due to just how long the series has run (100 years as of 2019), the Felix the Cat franchise has several different continuities in it:
    • The Silent Era Felix, which is unmistakably set in a surreal, comedic caricature of 1920's urban culture, with some fairy tale and fantasy elements sandwiched in. Felix is portrayed as a nomadic Anti-Hero who acts on his own in the bulk of these cartoons, with recurring side characters being kept minimal and only sporadically appearing. The newspaper comics and comic books are all derived from this era, but there is an overlapping period between them and the Oriolo Felix due to Joe Oriolo taking over the art and writing chores for them around 1954 and running them up to the early 60's.
    • The very short lived Van Beuren Era Felix, which is set in Disney-esque, pure fairy tale settings with little of the surrealism and absolutely none of the urban nature of the Silent era shorts. This Felix is portrayed as a meek little kid who gets overwhelmed by large casts of oneshot characters.
    • The Joe Oriolo (and later, Don Oriolo) Era Felix (sometimes referred to as the Trans-Lux Felix), the longest running and most well known incarnation of the series. This era has such a different art style, tone, and set of characters and locales from the Silent cartoons that the only thing that ties them together is that they both star Felix the Cat, and even then, the Oriolo Felix has a considerably different personality than the Silent era Felix. Felix occasionally gets to use his surreal abilities from the silent cartoons (such as detaching his tail to use it as a disguise in "The Magic Bag", and morphing it into a fist to punch back arrows in "Felix Out West") but they're downplayed in favor of using the benefits offered by the Magic Bag of Tricks, which was introduced in this series. The Movie and Baby Felix & Friends are also set in this continuity.
    • The Twisted Tales of Felix series, which attempts to be an amalgam of the Silent and Oriolo eras of the series, being a retro cartoon throwback to the original Felix cartoons, as well as cartoons of the 1930s, such as those by Fleischer Studios.
    • The Betty Boop & Felix newspaper comics, where Felix acts as a normal, non speaking house pet to Betty Boop, basically replacing Pudgy the dog from Betty's own cartoons.
    • And then you have the oddity that is Felix the Cat Live!, a very obscure live-action TV show which has no ties to any of the previous continuities, and portrays Felix the Cat in live action costume.
  • Transformers, to the point where even dedicated fans still can't really keep track without a map. This is compounded by the companies responsible for the franchise in the US and Japan actually disagreeing on continuity - Transformers Cybertron (known as Galaxy Force in Japan), for instance, is a standalone series according to Takara, but Hasbro considers it to be in continuity with the previous two franchises in the "Unicron Trilogy"; Transformers Armada aka Micron Legend and Transformers Energon aka Super Link. Many toy design elements make it clear that this was the original intent, but that the Japanese makers of the animated series took it upon themselves to declare it a standalone continuity, requiring some awkward redubbing in the American version to link it back to the Trilogy.
    • The problem is also compounded by Takara attempting to stuff everything (bar the Unicron Trilogy and Transformers Animated) into the Generation 1 universe.
    • Takara later retconned Cybertron back into being a sequel to Arm/Ene. This doesn't eliminate the snarl due to the Galaxy Force characters, who were different folks in Japan, having different names even if they have the same jobs and head designs, as well as incompatible histories for the ones with the same names without the glue seen in Cybertron. Merging them... does this mean Doubleface and Noisemaze are now the one Sideways seen in US continuity? What about Convoy and Galaxy Convoy? Megatron and Master Megatron? And how is Starscream back?
    • Transformers Animated is off on its own continuity. In Japan, Word Of God places it in movie continuity, with Bulkhead renamed Ironhide (yes, Animated Ironhide did appear. He's now Armorhide.) but nothing else was changed, to the point of making the connections an Informed Attribute that really doesn't hold any water.
    • The multiple incarnations of the Generation 1 universe in the comics.
    • And all the children's books. (And even the children's books weren't afraid to take what they liked of past installments and leave the rest. Sometimes the 'cons pop up in the same drill vehicle five minutes after they used it to escape last time; sometimes Jetfire is just fine after getting a Family-Unfriendly Death You can surely bet we never hear about the whole "thousands of human slaves go 'squish'" thing again.)
    • And the Armada/discontinued Energon comic. And the other Armada comic, from the UK.
      • The snarl of continuities is enough to require classification within the work itself. According to the best in-universe sources (the Transformers: TransTech continuity, which acts as the de facto hub of the Transformers multiverse) there are at at least 15,962,782 cataloged "universal streams" (read: alternate continuities) known to exist, with 1,176,325 of those having "come to termination". Those are just the ones that they know of- the actual number is undoubtedly much larger than this.
  • ALVINNN!!! and the Chipmunks: In "Family Spirit", Dave states he met The Chipmunks seven years ago, cancelling out the events of the earlier series.
  • Word of God is that the Madagascar film and the spin–off TV series The Penguins of Madagascar are in alternate continuities.
  • Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles has had so many continuities that in the Turtles Forever special, they made it so that every continuity was actually an Alternate Dimension in a TMNT Multi Verse.
  • The 2015 episodes of Golan the Insatiable are set in a different timeline than in the 2013-2014 episodes.
  • ThunderCats has Thunder Cats 2011
  • All Dogs Go to Heaven has a TV series that is completely different from both movies. It takes place in the time of the second movie, but Killer, a character from the first movie, is in it.
  • The Emperor's New School, the spin-off to The Emperor's New Groove, retcons Kuzco's Character Development from an egotistical Jerkass, and has Kronk still working with Yzma, who has the Paper-Thin Disguise of Principal Amzy.
  • The Ben 10: Ultimate Alien episode states that all the movies, video games, alternate futures, and What If? episodes are all alternate timelines.
  • Xiaolin Chronicles. With different characterizations (one example out of many in the show would be Wuya being trapped in a slinky instead of a puzzle box like in the first show), Raimundo not being the leader of the monks (and apparently never was here), the names of the Shen Gong Wu being different, Dojo's new design, the show seems to be heading in this direction.
  • Cartoons based on movies like Beetlejuice and Jumanji seem to be in their own continuities rather than following the movies they were based on. Alienators: Evolution Continues is the one that follows the film it was based on.
  • The Real Ghostbusters is a special case, as the episode "Citizen Ghost" confirms it takes place after the first movie, but "Take Two" reveals that said movie (starring the same cast) exists in their world, as well, so any discrepancies between the cartoon and the film can be explained as artistic license taken when the film was made in the cartoon continuity. This would explain why the series didn't portray them as bankrupt pariahs like they were in the beginning of Ghostbusters II.
  • The Rainbow Magic movie ignores everything that happened after the first series of books except the girls getting the fairy lockets.
  • Scooby-Doo! Mystery Incorporated is set in an alternate continuity from previous shows and movies. However, in the finale, an Alternate Timeline is created, and it's heavily implied that the original continuity happened in this timeline.
  • The Timothy Goes to School TV series has two different alternate continuities in picture books. The Yoko and Friends beginning reader books have many of the same characters, but cast Yoko in central role and eliminate at least a couple of the characters, including Lilly. Certain stories are versions of the TV episodes, but cast different characters in the main roles and have other variations. The Yoko picture books go even further. Mrs. Jenkins is still the teacher, but most of the other major characters from the TV series are absent and Yoko's mother is depicted differently. For example, in the TV show, she reluctantly allows Yoko to bring special toys to school, only for bad stuff to happen to them. In the Yoko's Show-and-Tell picture book, her mother disallows her to bring a special toy to school, but she disobeys and it gets wrecked and has to go to a doll hospital.
  • The Boondocks television series is an alternate continuity to the newspaper comic strip it's based on. The characters' personalities are tweaked a bit, a lot of new characters are introduced; and Michael Ceasar, a main character in the comic strip, is even Adapted Out.
  • The book Charming Opal and the animated television story "Opal's Looth Tooth" from the Toot & Puddle series tell rather different stories of Opal losing her first tooth. In the book, Opal loses her tooth when she, Toot and Puddle are playing at Pocket Pond and Toot has to find it at the bottom of the pond. Then, later, Puddle dresses as the tooth fairy to leave a quarter under Opal's pillow. The animated story focuses mainly on Opal's worries about her loose tooth, i.e. "What if it never comes out?", "What if I lose it?", "What if a new tooth never grows?", etc. She finally ends up losing it in a piece of bread at dinner, then the group hurries to go to bed so that the tooth fairy can come. Opal wakes up the next morning, happy to find her quarter.
  • World of Winx is clearly this to Winx Club.
  • Total DramaRama is an alternate continuity to Total Drama Island in which the teens are now preschoolers and are all attending the same daycare.
  • Teen Titans Go! serves as the alternate reality to the original Teen Titans series from 2003.
  • It's possible that the live-action Fairly Oddparents TV Movies are this in regards to the series itself, seeing as they go on a totally different tangent then what the ending to Channel Chasers did, instead having Timmy choose to live his life exactly as he did as a kid in order to keep Cosmo and Wanda forever. In addition, Poof still can't say anything other than his name (in an episode that aired shortly before A Fairly Odd Summer, he learned to talk), Sparky isn't so much as mentioned (even in A Fairly Odd Summer, which debuted long after Sparky was introduced to the series), and the live-action movies treat Tootie as the only potential love interest Timmy ever had (Trixie, for instance, isn't even mentioned in them), among other things.
    • With Season 10 introducing a new character that Timmy has to share Cosmo and Wanda with, it's even possible that ALL the movies are now alternate continuity.
  • Similar to the Ghostbusters case above, Men in Black is an Alternate Continuity from the movies. The movie actually exists in this universe and is the story of the MIB leaked by the Worms using a human suit and the name of Lowell Cunningham. The series even mentions Will Smith and Tommy Lee Jones as the actors playing K and L and shows them (in very accurate cartoon versions) on camera.
  • The short-lived RoboCop: The Animated Series depicted an even more-futuristic and hi-tech Detroit than RoboCop (1987) and as shown in the finale, a still-living Clarence Boddicker.
  • Batman: The Animated Series, Superman: The Animated Series, Batman Beyond and Justice League exist in the same continuity. Young Justice and the various films are all separate continuities.

Alternative Title(s): Alternative Continuity, Alternate Continuities


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