Follow TV Tropes


Contrasting Sequel Setting

Go To
Being comatose does so much to a man's world...
One of the reasons why sequels often fail to reach the same level of acclaim as their predecessors is that they simply retread the same ground. Many writers are aware of this and therefore try to shake things up when writing the sequel.

One common way to do this is to create a Contrasting Sequel Main Character or Contrasting Sequel Antagonist. Another thing they can do to shake things up is by creating a radically different setting.

This can have several advantages from a writing point of view. It allows for better world-building, by showing off parts of the world that were previously unseen. It can make for compelling Fish out of Water scenarios, either comedic or dramatic. Or it can be an excuse to change up even more aspects for the sequel, such as the aforementioned characters.

To qualify for this trope, a sequel has to have a setting that is not only different from its predecessor in name, but also in concept and themes. For example, this trope may or may not overlap with Sequel Goes Foreign. Case in point, if a sequel goes from taking place in a big city in one country to a big city in another without playing up or demonstrating any major contrasts or differences between the two settings, then it's not this trope. If, on the other hand, the setting changes from the city to the countryside regardless of nation, and those differences are obvious or affect the story, then this trope is in play. Similarly, if the sequel takes place in the same city, but it's drastically changed after a Time Skip, it's also a contrasting setting. A good test as to whether this trope is in play is how quickly or easily you can identify the change in setting; the more you have to rely on smaller details to identify the change, the less likely it is to be this trope.



    open/close all folders 

    Anime & Manga 
  • One of the more distinctive traits of JoJo's Bizarre Adventure is how different each part is.
    • Phantom Blood takes place in Victorian England.
    • Battle Tendency takes place in 1930s New York, followed by Venice.
    • Stardust Crusaders is an epic journey from Japan to Egypt, crossing Hong Kong, Shanghai, India, and Israel in the process.
    • Diamond is Unbreakable takes place in the small, ordinary town of Morioh-cho (residents notwithstanding).
    • Golden Wind takes place in Italy again, but this time, it's in the early 2000s, making the trip from Napoli to Roma.
    • Stone Ocean, as Jolyne calls it in an early chapter, is a women's prison in Florida.
    • The titular Steel Ball Run is a horse race from America's west coast to the east coast, which takes place in an alternate 1880s.
    • JoJolion takes place in an alternate Morioh, except that this town is much weirder; a mysterious earthquake has formed strange stone formations around the town, the ground itself has Fusion Dance properties, and there's not a single common location.
  • Yu-Gi-Oh! uses this trope quite a lot.

    Asian Animation 
  • Once Happy Heroes hits Season 6, it frequently zig-zags from some other setting that isn't Planet Xing every season back to Planet Xing itself every other season. The aforementioned season takes place on Planet Guling, which is primitive and prehistoric-themed compared to Planet Xing, a futuristic, robot-inhabited planet; Season 7 brings the action back to Planet Xing; and Season 8 takes place in a book filled with fantasy elements, with magic, dragons, and other stuff you wouldn't expect to find on a planet like Planet Xing.

    Films — Animated 
  • An American Tail, an immigrant story, takes place in gritty turn-of-the-century New York City, while An American Tail: Fievel Goes West transfers the cast to a little frontier town in Utah, and has a distinct western film vibe.
  • The first Frozen (2013) is known for icy and snowy landscapes, as the characters try to break Elsa's eternal winter curse in a setting where magic is uncommon. The sequel takes place during the colorful autumn months in a setting where magic is common.
  • The first Trolls movie sees the main Troll characters and their friends going outside their home to travel to Bergen Town, the home of the Trolls' longtime non-Troll rivals (the Bergens), and stop the Big Bad Chef. The second movie Trolls: World Tour has them travel through the homes of the other newly-revealed Troll Tribes under a similar goal.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • The Alien films go for dank and murky settings with differences - Alien is confined entirely to a spaceship, Aliens takes place on a colony, Alien³ takes place on a prison planet and Alien: Resurrection takes place on a space station.
  • Babe takes place in a rural area while Babe: Pig in the City mostly takes place in a fictional city called Metropolis.
  • Back to the Future is largely set in 1955, Back to the Future Part II goes to 2015 and an alternate 1985 before going back to 1955 and Back to the Future Part III is largely set in 1885. While all three take place in Hill Valley, California, each time period makes the town feel different in tone.
  • Die Hard takes place on Christmas Eve in sunny Los Angeles, while Die Hard 2 takes place on Christmas Eve in Dulles International Airport during a blizzard. Die Hard with a Vengeance takes place in New York during the summer.
  • New York City in The Godfather and Nevada in The Godfather Part II, where each film begins. The Corleone compound in New York feels very lively and even warm, being constantly inhabited by tons of relatives and friends. There's a definite vibe of community, closeness, and the Old World about it. Nevada, on the other hand, represents Michael's increasing distance from his Sicilian roots and his father's way of doing things in favor of Americanization—it's large and impressive, but desolate, cold, and impersonal. When there's no party, the house is very quiet and empty.
  • Glass Onion: Compared to its predecessor film, which was set in a cozy old New England mansion in fall, this film is set in a modern mansion on a Greek private island right at the beginning of summer.
  • Gremlins took place in a small American town, while Gremlins 2: The New Batch took place in a New York skyscraper.
  • Harry Potter:
    • The original film series takes place mostly at Hogwarts, except for Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1, which covers the first half of the book where the trio are hunting horcruxes throughout the British countryside. The bleak, meandering nature of these travels highlights how overwhelmed the trio is as they face the wartorn Wizarding World as adults with no guidance.
    • The Fantastic Beasts prequel series opens in New York City over half a century prior to the events of the original series, taking the films out of Great Britain for the first time, and focusing on adult wizards rather than adolescent students.
  • Home Alone was largely set in either the Chicago suburbs (specifically Winnetka) or following Kate getting back home from Paris, while Home Alone 2: Lost in New York takes place in New York City (with a few scenes in Miami).
  • Homeward Bound: The Incredible Journey takes place in the wilderness of the Sierra Nevada mountains; the sequel, Homeward Bound II: Lost in San Francisco, takes place in...well, just guess...
  • Predator 2: This movie swaps out the Central American jungle of the first film for the crime-ridden streets of 1990's Los Angeles. Not only does this change the setting's aesthetics, but it also changes the role of the protagonist (from an elite commando with a bodybuilder physique to a fairly average cop), the secondary human antagonists (from guerrilla fighters to drug gangs embroiled in a turf war), as well as raising the stakes for the final showdown: now, when the Predator threatens to use its Self-Destruct Mechanism, it's in the middle of a densely-populated city. Predators takes place on an alien planet used by the predators as a hunting ground that retains the first film's jungle setting.
  • Star Wars:
    • The first parts of The Empire Strikes Back take place on the icy planet of Hoth, as opposed to the desert-covered Tatooine where A New Hope begins.
    • In addition, Return of the Jedi spends much of its time on the forest moon of Endor, contrasting both the barren wastelands of Tatooine and Hoth.
    • The Phantom Menace introduced the lush Naboo and the mass metropolis of Coruscant. Attack of the Clones introduced the watery Kamino and another desert planet, Geonosis. Revenge of the Sith featured the rocky Utapau, the jungle planet Kashyyk and the lava planet Mustafar.
    • Broadly, while the Original Trilogy mostly takes place on harsh backwater planets with little infrastructure (the most developed location we visit being Cloud City hovering above the gas giant Bespin), the Prequels show various bustling, populated urban planets - something George Lucas already wanted to explore while making Episode VI, but limited by the technology at the time.
  • The National Lampoon's Vacation series - the first film was about a cross-country journey across America, National Lampoon's European Vacation spawned across Europe, National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation was limited to the Chicago suburbs and Vegas Vacation took place in Las Vegas.

  • Alice's Adventures in Wonderland takes place in the titular World Gone Mad. The setting is mid-Spring (May 4th); Alice accesses Wonderland through a rabbit hole; the story is largely a Random Events Plot as Alice attempts to get inside a beautiful garden behind a locked door; there is a heavy emphasis on vertical movement (best emphasized by Alice constantly changing size); and Wonderland is ruled by a suit of living cards. The sequel Through the Looking-Glass, and What Alice Found There, while also featuring a world of chaotic characters and language games, is Wonderland's polar opposite. The setting is exactly six months after the first story (November 4th); Alice reaches Looking-Glass World by traveling through a mirror; there is a clearly defined goal in the story (Alice must cross the entire country to become a Queen); the movement is almost entirely lateral (Alice stays the same size throughout but constantly changes position); and the world is ruled by living chess pieces.
  • Isaac Asimov:
    • The Elijah Baley books. The Caves of Steel is taking place in the sealed overcrowded cities of Earth, where the people are living on processed yeast scared of the very thought of going out. The Naked Sun is about a No Poverty planet where the entire population is twenty thousand people, each with an estate the size of a small country where a person or a married couple lives alone with thousands of robots. The Robots of Dawn take place in a society somewhere in the middle; a Free-Love Future world with two hundred million people and reasonable comfort for every resident.
    • Each book in The Complete Adventures of Lucky Starr takes place in a different place of the Solar Systems and deals with matters from mass poisonings to espionage and sabotage.
  • A Memoir By Lady Trent: Each book is set in a different geographical location, ecosystem, and culture. The first is in Ruritanian mountains (except for the intro, which is in not-Britain), the second in tropical not-Africa, the third is a voyage around the world visiting many different cultures, including island and mainland ones, the fourth is in a desert country, and the fifth is in her world's equivalent of the Himalayas. The Spin-Offspring sequel, by contrast, is set entirely in Scirland (not-Britain).
  • Each of the Venus Prime books takes place on a different planet in the Solar System. The first book takes place on Venus, or rather a commercial space station in orbit around Venus. The second book takes place on the Moon, now a mining facility. The third book takes place on a Mars that has been colonized by holdovers from the Soviet Union and Communist China. The fourth book takes place in orbit around Jupiter. The fifth book takes place on a Ganymede that has been colonized by Southeast Asians. And the final book takes place on Amalthea, which is revealed to actually be a world-sized spaceship, before moving back to Earth.

    Live-Action TV 
  • House of the Dragon: Contrasting "Prequel" Setting.
    • The Westeros of this series is not in the same shape as the one featured in Game of Thrones. For one, the kingdom is much more prosperous (it wouldn't be the case under Robert Baratheon even before the War of the Five Kings and all the other awful conflicts stemming from it made things even worse).
    • For Season 1, the focus is mainly on the places held by the Targaryens and the Velaryons, namely King's Landing, Dragonstone and Driftmark, and the Stepstones which the Velaryons aim at controlling. By contrast, Season 1 of Game of Thrones featured long stays in a wide array of places and climates in the Seven Kingdoms (King's Landing, Winterfell, the Vale, Daenerys' ordeal/odyssey in the Free Cities and the Dothraki Sea, etc). Essos is only physically featured via a stay of Daemon's family in Pentos.
  • Power Rangers:
  • You (2018):
    • Season 1 is set in New York, Season 2 in Los Angeles. While both are bustling cities, Joe (a born and bred New Yorker) dislikes the energy of LA. Justified — he is essentially in hiding at the start of season 2, so chose somewhere so different that the person chasing him would never think to look.
    • Season 3 moves the protagonists from the hustle and bustle of LA to the more sedate suburbia.

    Video Games 
  • Assassin's Creed uses this as part of its appeal - particularly to the part of its fanbase that is most interested in historical tourism.
    • Assassin's Creed took place in the Holy Lands during the Crusades, which are dominated by a particularly bleak atmosphere that seems to have an ever-present grey hue. The modern-day section is in a sterile lab in an unknown location that's overwhelmingly white. The cold colour palette and bleak setting combined with the almost total animosity Desmond and Altair face make for a rather claustrophobic, foreboding, and almost hopeless atmosphere.
    • Assassin's Creed II takes place in various north Italian cities during the Renaissance. The colour palette and atmosphere are now bright and warm, the cities are full of life and so are the people living in them, and the world design feels open completely unlike the overly crowded and claustrophobic feeling of the previous entry. The modern-day section is in a warehouse, which likewise now has a warm colour palette, large open spaces, and various people full of personality. The fact that Ezio and now Desmond are surrounded by allies only helps this.
    • Brotherhood, the direct sequel to the previous title, takes place in Renaissance Rome, while the modern-day section moves to the basement of the manor visited in the "past" section of the previous game. While for the most part the overall feeling hasn't changed, the comparatively more archaic setting - seeing as Rome has ancient ruins everywhere and the location of the modern setting isn't modern at all - gives a somewhat colder and more mysterious feeling.
    • Revelations takes place in the recently conquered and renamed Istanbul. Despite everything the city has gone through in the last several years - including said conquest and a recent destructive earthquake - Istanbul/Constantinople is full of life, with a very similar sensation to II - while the underlying tensions in the city and the mysterious ruins everywhere have that same mystery as Brotherhood, aided by the fact that Ezio is completely unfamiliar with this land. However, unlike the oddly similar old setting, the modern-day section sees its biggest change yet: it's a Virtual Reality space that consists of an island and some paleolithic-looking structures that are all clearly CGI In-Universe, and goes straight back to the frosty palette of the first game. The structures are gates that lead to surreal-looking and abstract representations of the settings of the previous games, maintaining basic shapes with the occasional realistic addition that makes it even more unsettling.
    • Assassin's Creed III:
      • The base game takes place during the American Revolution. Unlike the busy cities of all the previous entries, the setting here is the entire east coast of the American continent and then some, where nature is still clearly the ruler of this world, the "cities" are barely established - even the largest one give a port-town kind of feeling, and you can go for literal hours in the game barely seeing any signs of civilization. The modern-day section is startlingly different. It takes place inside a cave with advanced Precursor tech, giving it a look like TRON - complete with Tron Lines - while simultaneously having the mystery and foreboding feeling the franchise associates with the ancient.
      • The DLC, The Tyranny of King Washington' takes the same physical location, and turns it into a horror setting. It's the dead of the winter, all the cities and other inhabitable locations are dead and ruined, there are corpses hanging everywhere and Everything Is Trying to Kill You. To top it all off, there is Mason symbolism everywhere, and THE most important elements of the franchise - aka the Assassins and the Templars are completely absent. It's dark, foreboding, and creepy as hell. There are random trinkets all over the place that look like they came straight out of the Virtual Reality mentioned in Revelations.
      • Liberation is presented as a side-story to III, and takes place in the French colonies in the same time period. This time the atmosphere is much brighter and the cities are somewhat better established, somewhat resembling the "Ezio" entries. Interestingly, the game tries to Lampshade the difference between Liberation and III by having the protagonist Aveline visit Connor, the protagonist of III. That part of the game takes place in the middle of winter, with the only signs of civilization being the occasional bridge or outpost, in near-complete isolation.
    • Black Flag takes place in the West Indies during The Golden Age of Piracy. It's a world where it's perpetually summer and dominates by pirate towns, jungles, and the occasional ancient ruin, and everything is clearly in disarray. The game hilariously Lampshades this trope when the Italian ambassador - who has the same voice actor as Ezio - goes on a long rant complaining about how different, uncivilized and barbaric this place is compared to Italy. The modern section is in a fancy office building, which only looks happy and inviting - until you get to the deeper parts of the building and suddenly it's the first game and III all over again.
    • Rogue takes place during the French-Indian War. A good chunk of it is identical to III, taking place during that game's timeskip, but a very large part of the game is located in the Arctic circle, and is almost entirely naval, leaning heavily on the Mysterious Antarctica trope. The modern section is mostly unseen, but it once again happens in a fancy office building similar to the previous - this time in another country.
    • Unity takes place in Paris during the French Revolution, and the city goes from beautiful to absolute anarchy and chaos extremely fast. It's jarring to see a place that was at first so similar to the Italy of the previous entries go straight into the chaos and grey despair reminiscent of the first. The modern section is well... the player stand-in playing from the comfort of their own home. The player is also forced to see Paris in other time periods when running away from the massive glitches, and the differences are also highlighted, as one moment you are outside a medieval castle, and another trying to dodge Nazi patrols while climbing the Eiffel Tower.
    • Syndicate uses Victorian Britain London as its setting. While it's certainly busy and full of its own charm, any hints of nature present in the previous entries are completely absent and overtaken by the pollution and industrialization. The dystopian elements of the era are visible everywhere, with rampant crime, poverty and disease that were mostly absent in previous entries.
    • Origins uses Ancient Egypt during Cleopatra's reign. The setting is an open world with an architectural and cultural mashup of ancient Egypt, Greece, and Rome, which stands out on its own accord from the other settings, with its huge monuments and endless desert. The modern section is in the gravesite of the protagonist, which is an ancient Egyptian burial site, which is a stark contrast from every previous modern-day setting which was in the middle of modern civilization.
    • Odyssey takes place in Greece during The Peloponnesian War. Unlike Origins, the landscape is dominated by greenery, seas, mountains, and islands, creating a stark visual contrast to all the previous games since nothing had this level of irregularity in the landscape. The massive monuments and the small, friendly, and open cities give off a sense of awe and comfort simultaneously. The modern-day section on the other hand takes place in a warehouse much like the one in II, though there are no warm colours here to make you feel comfy - instead, everything is dark and cold to give a distant feeling.
  • Bioshock Infinite: Columbia is a bright and sunny city floating in the sky, as opposed to the dark, gloomy, and underwater city of Rapture from the previous games.
  • Dark Souls 1 is set on Lordran, a kingdom in twilight founded on the glory of a dragon-slaying lord who keeps a tomb for giants near the royal capital. Dark Souls 2 has Drangleic, a fractured but more lively land with multiple kings, the most notable of which made war with Giants but has a working relationship with the local dragon descendants. Dark Souls 3 setting goes back to Lordran's ruins, which have decayed even further and fallen into darkness with the First Flame flickering lower than ever before as you must now journey to take down the Lords of Cinder resurrected in a last ditch effort to keep the flame going just a little longer.
  • The original Dead Space is set on the USG Ishimura, a planet cracker class vessel. Dead Space 2 takes place on Titan Station, also known as "The Sprawl", a space station located on what's left of one of Saturn's moons.
  • Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare takes place in the modern day as the title suggests. This was a huge departure from the original Call of Duty trilogy, which took place in World War 2. This change happened after the World War 2 setting was starting to be seen as stale.
  • Dragon Age:
    • Dragon Age: Origins and its expansion are set in Ferelden, a Fantasy Counterpart Culture of Medieval England, with its cold climate, temperate forests, and a political balance of power between restricted monarchy and powerful baronies.
    • Dragon Age II is set largely within Kirkwall, which contrasts Ferelden in two ways: firstly, it is a single large city, rather than a vast, partially unexplored country; secondly, as an independent city-state, Kirkwall's politics are much more localized and petty than Ferelden's.
    • Dragon Age: Inquisition, while being partly set in Ferelden, places its main action in Orlais, a vast, yet centralized Francophone empire whose lands include anything from sand deserts to jungles.
  • Fallout:
    • The first Fallout game takes place in post-apocalyptic Southern California 84 years after a nuclear war, with plenty of modest, small communities trying to eke out an existence within the ruins of civilization.
    • Fallout 2 is set physically close but takes place a further 80 years in the future, and while it still has lots of ruins and small settlements, we also see civilization rebuilding itself in advanced communities and nations such as Vault City and New California Republic.
    • Fallout 3 is set even further in the future, 200 years after the war, but takes place on the East Coast in the ruins of Washington D.C., which is even more inhospitable than most of the previously featured locations due to being an important, heavily bombed target during the war. Civilization is limited to small settlements built out of scrap and people just barely surviving by scavenging. The area is infested by super mutants, raiders and heavily mutated wildlife which don't help matters. There's little vegetation and almost all the water is irradiated - the plot of the game itself is based around trying to make the place more livable by purifying the water.
    • Fallout: New Vegas, in turn, goes back west, following up on the first two games' plot points. In contrast to the Capital Wasteland, Las Vegas and the surrounding area were only mildly bombed (largely due the efforts of a super genius able to disable most nukes targeted towards it). Though most inhabitants of Las Vegas initially died out due to radiation poisoning anyway, most of the structural damage was caused by decay and disrepair rather than the immediate bomb blasts, there's plenty of vegetation and clean water (as much as there'd be in a desert, anyway), and most irradiated areas and dangerous mutated wildlife are localized. There are far more functioning communities outside of the city of New Vegas itself, with ways of life often harkening back to the Old West (with some futuristic technology, of course), with outside forces taking interest in the area. New California Republic's heartland is mentioned to have developed even further than back during Fallout 2, with some places returning to pre-War standards.
  • Half-Life is set in the Black Mesa Research Facility, while Half-Life 2 is set in City 17, a Combine-controlled city in Eastern Europe.
  • Jak and Daxter: The Precursor Legacy takes place in a jovial High Fantasy setting with some Steampunk elements. Jak II: Renegade takes place in a gritty Cyberpunk Wretched Hive. There is a big wham moment in the last mission of the first act, where Jak and Daxter are given a mission to travel to the ruins on the edge of the city to clear some Metal Heads away from a sacred site, and then they go there and see the sacred site themselves: It's Samos' hut from the first game, run-down and forgotten. This is the moment where the heroes realise that they are in a Bad Future.
  • Kirby:
    • Kirby: Triple Deluxe takes place in Floralia, a pastel-coloured Floating Continent full of flowers and other plant life. The next main series game, Kirby: Planet Robobot, takes place on Pop Star's surface, which has been overrun with machines and industry.
    • Kirby and the Forgotten Land doesn't have any gameplay on Pop Star at all; it only appears in cutscenes. It takes place in a more realistic-looking alternate dimension called the New World, which is filled with urban ruins.
  • While Klonoa: Door to Phantomile took place in Phantomile, a world powered by dreams with kingdoms representing different elements, Klonoa 2: Lunatea's Veil instead takes place in the eponymous Lunatea, a world powered by emotions each represented by a kingdom.
  • The Legend of Zelda:
    • The first three games take place in the medieval fantasy kingdom of Hyrule, but Link's Awakening broke tradition by taking place on a Denser and Wackier tropical island filled with Mario cameos and modern-day technology.
    • The two games starring the Hero of Winds, The Wind Waker and Phantom Hourglass, take place on open seas where Link must sail between islands. Spirit Tracks, set 100 years later on the same timeline, takes place on a single landmass where the main method of transportation is steam trains.
  • In contrast to the starkly geometric military/industrial settings of 1 and 2, Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater is largely set in a sprawling jungle environment.
  • Most Metroid games take place in a large planet that Samus has to explore in full. Metroid Fusion takes place in an isolated space station and forces Samus to take care of the problems Adam tells her to, resulting in the games' most linear 2D installment.
  • Persona utilities this trope quite a bit.
    • The first game takes place in the town of Mikage-cho, where the only notable thing is SEBEC's division.
    • Sumaru City in Persona 2 is a full-blown 90's city of weirdos where rumours become reality, filled to the brim with celebrities and foreigners from all over the world, and high crime rates.
    • Persona 3 focuses solely on Gekkougan High School and the surrounding area, the modern and high-tech Tatsumi Port Island.
    • Persona 4 takes place in a small rural town that seems to be a Shout-Out to Morioh, and is a stark contrast to Tatsumi.
    • Persona 5 takes place in modern-day Tokyo, a real location as opposed to the fictional ones of previous games.
  • Pokémon does this a lot when creating new regions each generation.
    • Johto from Pokémon Gold and Silver is said to be more traditional and cultured than the Kanto region from Pokémon Red and Blue, which is said to be more modern. While Kanto is a center of business, technology, and science, Johto features more cultural and historic sites. This distinction largely derives from their respective real-world inspirations, the Kansai and Kanto regions of Japan.
    • Hoenn from Pokémon Ruby and Sapphire is said to be to the south of the previous regions, and thus has a warmer, even tropical, climate. Sinnoh from Pokémon Diamond and Pearl is to the north of the other regions and thus features a much colder climate. This also matches up with their real-world counterparts, Kyushu and Hokkaido, which are the southernmost and northernmost of Japan's major islands respectively.
    • Pokémon Black and White takes place in Unova, which contrasts all of the previous main series regions: it's based on New York instead of a region of Japan. As a result, it's more urbanised than Kanto, and the series' oft-parodied use of Free-Range Children is addressed; the player characters look like teenagers, and Bianca's father is hesitant to let her go on a journey.
    • Pokémon Sun and Moon take place in the tropical Alola region, which is sparsely-populated. The player's quest is the island challenge, a rite of passage that involves venturing into the wilderness. The next original games, Pokémon Sword and Shield, take place in Galar, which is industrialised with many cities. The player's quest is the gym challenge as per usual, but this time it's a major spectator sport.
    • While most Pokémon games take place in a time period similar to The Present Day where people and Pokémon live in harmony, Pokémon Legends: Arceus takes place centuries in the past, when most people were afraid of Pokémon and trainers were few and far between.
  • Quest for Glory:
    • First game: Spielburg. Northern Europe. Mountains and forests.
    • Second game: Shapier and Rasier. Middle East. Deserts and so forth.
    • Third game: Tarna and Fricana. Africa. Jungles and savannas.
    • Fourth game: Mordavia. Central Europe edging into Russia. Similar to Spielburg except fewer mountains and more swamps.
    • Fifth game: Silmaria. Ancient Greece and the Mediterranean. Boating is required and the islands allow for wider variety.
  • The first three main entries in the Resident Evil series were set in or around Raccoon City, a fictional American metropolis. Resident Evil 4, by contrast, is set in an unnamed European country and opens in a rustic village.
  • Slime Rancher's ranch was located in the Dry Reef, a desert dominated by yellow and orange hues. Slime Rancher 2's ranch is a glass-dome conservatory in the predominantly blue and green Rainbow Fields.
  • The first two Splatoon games take place in Inkopolis, a bustling city inhabited by Inklings and many other species, but not Octolings (prior to the Octo Expansion). Splatoon 3 takes place in Splatsville, a desert town where Inklings and Octolings happily co-exist alongside everyone else.
  • Spyro the Dragon (1998) takes place in the world of dragons, while Spyro 2: Ripto's Rage! takes place in a world where no-one has seen a dragon before.
  • Streets of Rage takes place within a modern city with various locales such as the city streets, the beach, a warehouse, and so on. The sequel, while still having city locales, puts the heroes in a more exotic setting by having them visit an amusement park, a baseball stadium with a hidden fight club underneath it, and a jungle that hides the syndicate's secret robot factory. The third game tones it down slightly by having a more even mix of modern and exotic locales.
  • Super Mario Bros.:
  • The first four expansions of World of Warcraft all set themselves in distinctly different locations than the last.
    • The Burning Crusade, is set in the wholly alien and mostly desolate world of Outland, contrasting the base game's more grounded fantasy-earth setting.
    • Wrath of the Lich King follows that up by being set in the Grim Up North realm of Northrend, which primarily consisted of tundras, glaciers, and at best a snowy forest and even the underground zones were primarily blue.
    • Cataclysm is set all across the now-changed continents of the base game, culminating in a set of zones with a strong fire/earth thematic to contrast its predecessor's cold blues.
    • Mists of Pandaria is set in the lost world of Pandaria, which is the first to be dominated by a mostly friendly race, the Pandaren, and much of the game, especially the early areas, are set in lush jungles and fertile green farmlands in opposition to the ravaged terrain of Cataclysm.
  • The Ys series involves Adol Christin's adventures all over the world and so most of them take place on different continents, with only one actually taking place on the eponymous floating island.
    • Ys: Ancient Ys Vanished ~ Omen takes place on Esteria, an island nation home to the fabled Tower of Darm. Esteria is known for its rolling fields and mines full of the magical Cleria metal.
    • Ys II: Ancient Ys Vanished – The Final Chapter is on Ys proper, a hidden magical floating island with a bit of a Patchwork Map design with fields, ruins, icy glaciers, and lava-filled caves resting right next to each other. Also features a thriving Monster Town.
    • Ys III: Wanderers from Ys and its remake Ys: The Oath in Felghana take place in Dogi's homeland of Felghana where an evil Count terrorizes the land. Felghana is home to a huge mining complex, a volcano, a massive mountain range, and a beautiful palace.
    • Ys IV: Mask of the Sun, Ys IV: The Dawn of Ys, and their remake Ys: Memories of Celceta take place in the uncharted Great Forest of Celceta which is home to the last Eldeenian and the powerful artifacts he protects.
    • Ys V: Lost Kefin, Kingdom of Sand takes place in the city of Xandria on the wild continent of Afroca. Xandria and the eponymous Kefin are situated in a vast arid desert.
    • Ys VI: The Ark of Napishtim takes place on the Canaan Islands, an archipelago hidden by an endless whirlpool. It is home to the native Redah tribe and an ancient weather control machine.
    • Ys Origin returns to the Tower of Darm 700 years ago.
    • Ys SEVEN is on Afroca again in the military kingdom of Altago. Altago is plagued with natural disasters and is watched over by five great dragons.
    • Ys VIII: Lacrimosa of Dana takes place on the deserted island of Seiran, which was once home to the Eternian society. Seiran is mostly tropical with jungles, beaches, and an enormous mountain in the center.
    • Ys IX: Monstrum Nox takes place in the Prison City of Balduq, a major city located in the Gllia-Erdlingen region, which is a Romun province located on the northeast Esterior peninsula on the continent of Eresia. Balduq is an enormous city surrounded by mountains and ruins.

    Visual Novels 

     Web Comic 

    Web Video 
  • The first campaign of Critical Role takes place primarily in Tal'Dorei, a continent drawing heavily from traditional Western European High Fantasy tropes. The second campaign takes place in Wildemount, a continent drawing from different cultures and folklores (for example, the Dwendalian Empire is very German, the Menagerie Coast has a Mediterranean coast feel to it, and the Kryn Dynasty has a Romanian feel). The third campaign takes place in Marquet, a continent loosely drawing inspiration from the Middle East and northern Africa.

    Western Animation 
  • In Avatar: The Last Airbender, the Gaang travelled around the world constantly and rarely stayed in the same place for long. The first book of the sequel series The Legend of Korra takes place almost entirely in Republic City, a cosmopolitan metropolis that features all of the latest cultural and technological developments, in order to showcase how much the world has changed since the previous show ended. The other books avert this, however, with the cast traveling around the world much like the bulk of the previous show.
  • My Little Pony:
  • Transformers:
    • The Transformers started out on Earth set during the '80s and ends in the far-flung future of 2005. After the failed attempt at reviving the franchise with Generation 2 (using edited versions of select episodes of the G1 cartoon), the next sequel series Beast Wars sets the action completely on a prehistoric Earth with the only sources of technology being the Transformers themselves. The sequel to Beast Wars, Beast Machines, took place on the dark and dreary Transformer homeworld of Cybertron.
    • Transformers: Animated took place in an urban setting of Detroit in the future. Prime generally takes place in a rural setting around Nevada in the then-present.