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Some part of a game that carries over between multiple playthroughs or multiple players.

See also New Game Plus, Twinking, Player Data Sharing, and Progressive Jackpot. If it crosses from one game to another in the same franchise, it's an Old Save Bonus. Succession Game and Legacy Board Game are subcategories. Very common in Rogue-lite games, as a playthrough ends whenever the player dies, as well as Idle Games with prestige mechanics that reset your progress except the prestige currency earned from doing so or provide Reset Milestones. Despite the similar names, it's not quite the opposite of a Minigame, Microgame, or related to the Metagame.


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    Action Game 
  • Bounty of One: You gain gold after every run based on your score, regardless of success or failure. These can be used in Roger's Black Market to buy items that affect future runs, such as permanently increasing your attack by 10, or giving you one extra max HP. Spending enough gold also allows you to unlock Roger as a Secret Character.
  • Skills and upgrades you unlock in the Devil May Cry series carry over between playthroughs for as long as they are on the same save file. It's expected to finish a first playthrough with a good chunk of skills still not unlocked, but it is expected to have a character fully kitted out before tackling the unlockable, hardest difficulty modes. Later games such as Devil May Cry 4 and Devil May Cry 5 have currencies (e.g. Red Orbs, Proud Souls), consumable items (e.g. Gold Orbs), and health/Devil Trigger gauge upgrades shared by the several playable characters, eliminating the need to start over from scratch when switching between them (albeit the purchasable skills are still character-specific). This is something of an expected feature in Stylish Action games in general, with many of the other major landmark titles in the genre (like Viewtiful Joe, Bayonetta, and Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance) following the same setup.
  • The goal (if it can be called such) of NOBY NOBY BOY is to stretch your BOY to as long as possible. You can then upload your length to GIRL. GIRL's length is the total length of all BOYs submitted, and as GIRL reaches new milestones, new playgrounds are unlocked for all BOYs.
  • In a given playthrough of The Outlaw, The Drunk & The Whore, you can buy up to 5 items that boost your stats. Each item you discover is also worth a small boost which is enabled for every subsequent run.

    Edutainment Game 
  • Gravestones in The Oregon Trail are potentially shown to future parties going along the trail. These stones could be inscribed by the player allowing for some very interesting messages.
    • A particular version of the game widely circulated online has one well known tombstone: "Here lies andy. peperony and chease." For those of you who are scratching your heads, this is presumably a (misspelled) reference to a series of commercials for Tombstone brand frozen pizza.

    Fighting Game 
  • Most modern Wrestling Games include championship belts, whose holders are persistent between playthroughs. You can generally even put them on the line in multiplayer matches.
  • In Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, collected Spirits and Spirit Points are held by the game's main save file. This means that they're available to use on any playthrough of World of Light, even without using the New Game Plus feature, which is used to retain fighters and skill points. This makes Broken Bridge scenarios a non-issue after the required spirits are collected once.

  • Distinct from its New Game Plus mode, Kingdom of Loathing has had a few items carry over, such as demon summoning names. There were also some other items that depended on how many other players had, such as a particular familiar.
  • World of Warcraft has several achievements that provide benefits to other characters. In the expansion Warlords of Draenor one character can unlock the ability to fly in Draenor for all characters on that account (assuming they have the training to fly otherwise) by jumping through many achievement hoops. in Mists of Pandaria, one character reaching exalted reputation with a faction would be able to buy a consumable item that would give all the other characters 50% faster reputation gain with the same faction, to ease the pain of the triple unlocks.

    Platform Game 
  • The entire point of Jesse Venbrux's Deaths is this. Normally its just a platformer with very tricky death traps, however, whenever you play, the server loads up the corpses (blood and all) of all the last 100 players to die on that level. Normally this will just hint at where the hidden death traps are, however, in the last two levels, you have to create a pile of your own bodies in one instance to block one of the traps, and in the other, to create a hill to jump on so that you can get to the goal.
    • Another of his games, Execution, gives you the option either to shoot a man tied to a post or not. If you shoot him, you lose, and if you load the game up again it says "It's already too late." You get to the guy you're supposed to execute, only he's already dead.
      • Even worse, deleting everything and reinstalling the game won't bring him back.
  • Rogue Legacy tasks you with defeating a castle's four guardians to gain access to the Final Boss. However, your character is so weak that this will be nearly impossible. After you inevitably die, your heir will inherit the money you found in the castle, which can be used to build and upgrade training facilities to improve future characters' stats and unlock new classes and equipment, until you are strong enough to beat the game.
  • The soul chips you collect in 20XX runs are used to buy stuff for future runs, although to avert the Double Unlock problem, you generally get whatever you just bought in the next game for free.

    Real Time Strategy 
  • Mindustry lets you build a Launch Pad, which launches resources into orbit to bring back into New Game Plus later or spend on Tech Tree. After completing a scenario all your remaining resources also are launched.

  • This is the core of the Rogue-Lite sub-genre; most of your progress is erased when you die, but future playthroughs get bonus stats and feats to make the game slightly easier. Note that this trope generally restricts a game from being considered a 'true' roguelike.
  • In Abomi Nation performing well in a run will award you with Temporal Pebbles, which can be spent to unlock new areas, items, and Abomis for future runs.
  • Dungeonmans: One of the game's defining characteristics:
    • The player can deposit Proofs of Stremf to the Academy, which increases the available stat points on the current character by 2. They also increase the stat points of every newly created character by 1.
    • When Level 10 characters die, they'll return to the Academy to teach one of their learned skill-trees to future characters (3 free skill points). This also applies if a Dungeonman retires willingly.
    • Equipment that is Legendary, Set Piece, or Heroic can be stored in the Wargear Vault for future characters. Melted down equipment can also be used later on by any character to give equipment upgrades.
    • Consumables (Scrolls and potions) can be pre-identified for new characters by return books and alchemy equipment to the Academy
    • Monster knowledge (how dangerous an enemy is, max HP, etc...) can be accrued by returning monster books.
    • Pets. Even if a player dies while a pet is in their inventory, it will be returned to the Academy Ovomanser.
  • When a character dies in NetHack they have a chance of leaving a 'bones' level — a copy of the level exactly as was when they died — to be found by other players. Their corpse is still carrying all of the loot they had in life. But the bones are guarded by the old player's hostile ghost and any surviving pets, and most of the loot is invariably cursed. Also, finding a bones pile is a sure sign that whatever killed your previous character is out there to get you.
  • What little permanent progression there is in Nuclear Throne comes in the form of unlocking characters, crowns and golden weapons. You unlock characters by performing a specific action or visiting a specific area. When unlocked, you'll see them back at the campfire after you complete your run. Crowns are much harder; you must acquire them on your run and defeat the Final Boss. Since you can replace your crown in the Frozen City, you only get to keep the one you end the game with. Crowns are tied to characters; if you unlock a crown with one character, you still need to unlock it with another character. Golden weapons are easier to acquire than crowns but the way to get them is less obvious and requires more luck. However, you can only have one golden weapon unlocked per character; getting another one replaces the first.
  • In Dead Cells, you can find blueprints from enemies or secret areas and take them to the Collector in between stages so that you can spend Cells to unlock the item or mutation, which can show up in future runs. There are also a few meta-upgrades that directly benefit your runs, like increased healing flask charges, and runes found in stages to unlock more movement options. Unlocking higher difficulties involves actually taking the Boss Stem Cell from the final boss.
  • Dungeon Crawl features player ghosts as well. Most characters can leave ghosts upon dying - undead, however, cannot. When a ghost is created, it inherits the traits of the character it is based on - for example, a dead summoner will use summoning magic to fight new characters.
  • Dwarf Fortress generates a "world" with its own history and established locations at the beginning of the game. However, multiple games can be played in the same world, allowing an adventurer to visit fortresses created by the player in earlier games or for settlements to grow, be established, or be wiped out over time. Failed or abandoned fortresses can be reclaimed and recolonized, dead adventurers' possessions can be located and retired adventurers can be encountered and recruited. If your fortress manages to tame any "exotic" animals, a little bit of the knowledge gained about that species will trickle back to the fort's parent civilization. If you start over again with a new fortress with the same parent civilization, taming that same species will be just that little bit easier.
  • In Equin: The Lantern, every boss is worth a Xtoli point. Those can be exchanged for certain useful boosts and items at the start of a run.
  • In Everspace, Credits are used for the occasional trading, but more importantly, for acquiring Perks, which include pilot perks like cheaper or more efficient crafting and repairs, critical hits, and higher chance of gaining better items, and upgrades to a ship's stats. There are also blueprints for crafting and ship decals which drop from enemies, and unlockable Subroutines that can be found in locked Colonial stations and Ancient bases. Also, after completing the game for the first time, you need to collect DNA samples from other Adam clones and bring them to the lab to get the true ending.
  • Has-Been Heroes: Every time you finish a run, losing or otherwise, any souls you collected are given to the Big Good Gatekeeper, which are then exchanged for better items and more spells to find in later runs. In addition, every time you kill an elemental Ghoul, you unlock a new hero and a slew of new items associated with the corresponding element.
  • In The Binding of Isaac, a lot of items and bosses are unlocked after subsequent playthroughs.
  • Over multiple games of Shiren the Wanderer it's possible to improve the towns you visit, which in turn gains you allies and new types of items to find.
  • One Way Heroics has a Hero Point system that lets you add more perks, unlock more classes, and expand the Dimensional Vault between adventures. More perks and Classes means more replay value and challenge, and the Dimensional Vault lets you transfer items between characters.
  • Let It Die: If you get your character killed (and don't pay an entire Death Metal jewel to get them insta-rezzed), your character mutates into a "Hater", one of the monsters roaming the Tower of Barbs, forcing you to delete that character from the roster, hunt them down and destroy ALL their equipment to retrieve them, or pay a HEFTY fee in coins to retrieve them at the bottom floor. If you are playing online while this happens, your Hater can be fought by another player, and you earn a small fee when your Hater beats the crap out of another player character. You can also fight player-generated squads of Defenders at Tokyo Death Metro, which earns points that are automatically redeemed weekly into cool prizes, and if you manage to capture a Defender you can milk them at your personal prison for lithium energy and a random item.
  • Rogue Legacy lets you spend Gold you've acquired from the last run to unlock new classes and permanent stat bonuses before starting each run. You have to abandon all remaining Gold if you want to progress.
  • FTL: Faster Than Light lets you unlock new ships and new layouts for the ships you already have, but they are only available starting from the next playthrough.
  • In addition to buying new guns and items to appear in the future, Enter the Gungeon has three macrogame quests that can be done across multiple runs. The first is opening shortcuts to later Chambers, which often requires going out of your way for certain resources to provide. The second, and more important, is gathering the components necessary for the blacksmith to construct the Bullet That Can Kill The Past, which unlocks the True Final Boss for each character. The Gungeon being what it is, each component only needs to be delivered once, and once complete, every further run can claim the Bullet when they reach Chamber 5. Finally, there is a quest to return an item to the foyer, which can only be completed by finding it in Chamber 5 and sending it up one floor per run.
  • Hades has the Mirror of Night, which lets Zagreus gain permanent buffs in exchange for the Darkness resource you obtain from certain rooms in the game. Zagreus can also unlock and empower new weapon forms between runs, unlock equipable keepsakes that provide bonuses like more health or forcing a specific boon-providing god, or commission helpful rooms or challenges that can then show up in the Underworld.
  • Risk of Rain: Completing various tasks like finishing stages quickly or killing a certain number of enemies unlocks new items, characters, and (in the sequel) alternative skills for you to use during new playthroughs.
  • In Crying Suns, Kaliban will archive the DNA of any special officers you find during a run, allowing you to clone them for use in future runs. You also unlock new battleships for future runs when you complete a chapter.
  • In Revita, the soul coins and materials earned after defeating bosses can be used to unlock more relics at the Imprisoned, or build more special rooms and develop passive abilities that help subsequent runs, respectively.

    Role Playing Game 
  • Bravely Second integrates the macrogame into the story. The only real chance the protagonist ever had to stop the game's Downer Ending from unfolding was right at the beginning, but he was much too weak to put up any meaningful resistance against the opening Hopeless Boss Fight. So you should fix that.
  • Dawn of Mana lets you keep badges and money earned, bonus stages unlocked, and pets found, as well as allowing access to higher difficulty levels.
  • Once a class specialization is unlocked in Dragon Age: Origins, it remains unlocked for all subsequent playthroughs.
  • The DS version of Final Fantasy IV adds Augments. These are special abilities which you can assign to any party member (for example: 50% more HP, fast spellcasting, etc.). Once assigned, the Augment is always available to that party member across playthroughs.
  • Final Fantasy X: Al Bhed primers are found across the game that let you decode what the Al Bhed are saying, one letter at a time, and as soon as they're found, can be used by any file, so you can finally get what they're saying when you first meet them.
  • In Mass Effect, completing certain challenges unlocked bonuses for all other characters made by the same player. This ranged from unlocking Assault Rifle training for any class or the ability to buy Master Spectre gear.
  • Mordheim: City of the Damned has the Veteran system. Each warband you make has their own individual achievements to unlock in gameplay, but they all feed into a universal EXP meter; with each level up, the player gains points with which they can purchase sweeping upgrades like reduced unit recruitment and upkeep costs, better shop prices, chances to gain weapons and armour for free, and more. Once earned, these points carry over into any and all current and future warbands. In other words, don't worry too much if your first warband fails, as they've still contributed to progress and your second warband will find going much easier.
  • In Sea of Stars, once a Relic is acquired once, it remains unlocked for all subsequent playthroughs.
  • The tactical RPG Shining Force III had three "scenarios", each with the player controlling a different side of the war. However, the game still read your previous game's save files, allowing for customizable character names to carry over, special events in later scenarios that are unlocked in earlier ones, and even a climactic final battle where the player controls all three armies at once.
  • In Space Station 13, graffiti left by players on the station will be there in all subsequent playthroughs, or at least until somebody decides to erase it.
  • The PSP remake of Tactics Ogre rebalances all story battles to average party level should you replay parts of the game that occur earlier in the "timeline".
  • Undertale: The player character, Flowey and implied narrator Chara remember all actions even if they were erased by resets. Sans also has a hunch that you can travel in time, and you can confirm it to him by reloading a save from before a conversation with him and telling code phrases only he would know. Some other characters have déjà vu-like memories of the events that happened before the player reloaded the game. Mechanically, the game itself definitely remembers a decision that carries across all subsequent playthroughs: if you sell your soul to CHARA, you can't undo the decision short of unchecking backups to the cloud and then deleting the *.dll file where that choice is stored in memory
  • Breath of Fire: Dragon Quarter has a feature called "SOL Restart" that lets you restart the game from the beginning while keeping many of the improvements you've gotten, and new playthroughs even unlocked extra scenes.

    Shoot Em Up 
  • In Battle Garegga, every time the game is played, the rank (shmup lingo for Dynamic Difficulty) at the start of a new game increases. If you're playing it in the arcade in the evening, long after the machine's been on and after (presumably) many plays by other players, this can pose a problem. The only ways to initialize the rank are to reset the machine (or console, if you're in the Saturn version, or emulator, if you're playing on MAME), allow the Attract Demo to run all the way through, or use the Options menu (again, if you're in the Saturn version).
  • Stellavanity's Story Mode gives you EXP after each playthrough for leveling up. Raising your level will increase your stats at the start of the game. You can also purchase accessories to further customize your character, which can be equipped and unequipped as needed between playthroughs. Rule Mode locks you at Level 10, but lets you use accessories, and Strict Rule Mode outright averts this trope.
  • If you're playing GHOST Squad with a card on a machine that accepts cards or via the Wii port, you can unlock new weapons and costumes that you can use in subsequent playthroughs, as well as unlock harder versions of missions by completing each of them.

    Simulation Game 
  • Happens to some degree in SimCity 4: the residential, commercial and industrial demand in your cities is affected by your neighboring cities.
    • It goes a bit further than that, and leads to many exploits. You can have one city sell its power, water and landfill space to other cities on the map, but once the city is selling its "goods" you can simply avoid playing that city ever again, and so never have to maintain those service providers. This allows building adjacent cities with no power/water/trash services of their own, which costs a bit more but makes up for it with 0 pollution, 0 space taken up, and no maintenance required.
    • The Sims is similar in this regard (though not so much in The Sims 3, where switching households within a neighborhood carries a rather arbitrary penalty.)
  • Partial example in Game Dev Tycoon. As you make video games and develop game reports, you'll gather more information about how genres, audiences, platforms, and other factors interact—for example, you may learn that Sci-Fi/RPG is a good combination. This information will appear when you create further games in your current career, and also in subsequent playthroughs (unless you choose the option to turn this off, so as not to have an unfair advantage). You won't start off a new game with buckets of money, talent, or a shiny new office, but you can start with a load of valuable information about how to tailor your games that a "clean" new game wouldn't have.
  • Pharaoh: Playing the game in campaign mode lets you build a mansion for your Non Entity Governor, which stores a salary taken from city funds over time. The money saved up is carried over from level to level, and can be given back to the city in case of financial emergency or spent on expensive gifts to other Egyptian nobles to raise your kingdom rating. To prevent abuse, there are some limits built in: giving yourself a higher salary than you're allowed reduces the rating (and causes the Pharaoh to think you're The Starscream and act accordingly), the gifts cost a percentage of your total savings (so you basically cut your savings by up to half with every use), and the game forbids you from putting city funds in your account no matter how successfully you're running it, as that would be embezzlement.

    Survival Horror 
  • Your character level and skills carry over when you restart in Dead Rising. And since the entire game's on a strict time limit, it's difficult to win unless you play for a while just leveling up, then restart and play through with those skills.

    Turn-Based Strategy  
  • Super Robot Wars games will variably let you carry over pilot levels, mech upgrades, money, items, and Favorite Series (allowing you to slowly Favorite every series in the game).
    • W, at least, will automatically favorite all series on the third playthrough. W also features enemy upgrades to keep some semblance of challenge.

    Wide Open Sandbox 
  • Your galaxy in Spore is populated by creatures taken from other player's games. And your game. In fact, a number of in-game achievements require meeting your own creations when they are not under your control.

  • Around the mid-late 80s, most Pinball machines had a progressive jackpot that carried over between games. On those machines, getting the jackpot was often the ultimate goal of the game, which often required a very deliberate process to qualify it. When one player wins it, the jackpot resets to a given default value. Various accommodations can be made for tournament play, such as forcing the jackpot to some fixed value, narrowing the range of jackpot values, and giving each player an equal shot at the current jackpot value.
    • Many pinball games also have an operator setting to make the game dynamically adjust the replay score, which usually awards the player a free game for reaching it. Winning one replay will cause a dramatic increase in the replay score for the very next game (for example, to win the nth replay in a row might require earning n times the base replay score), to prevent one player from hogging a table by constantly winning replays. Over a longer period, this base replay score will gradually rise or fall in tandem with the average skill level of everyone who has played.
  • The main selling point of Risk Legacy, as well as the follow-on Legacy games such as Pandemic Legacy, is that every game played results in permanent changes to the board and the playing pieces. Continents are named; cities are built and destroyed; territory cards are enriched or destroyed; even new playable factions are unlocked while the starting factions gain new strengths and weaknesses.
  • Dungeons & Dragons Adventurers League (AL), which follows a very standardized game sanctioning process so that your character is official no matter what AL game table you play at, allowing you to play the same character under multiple Dungeon Masters.
  • Upon clearing a Success mode in any Power Pro-kun Pocket game since 6, you earn Power Points that can be exchanged for items upon starting a new playthrough. In a few games, there is a Love Interest or a series of plot-important events which won't appear unless brought in this shop.
    • Power Pro-kun Pocket 2 has a weird New Game Plus system where you can insert custom characters into other copies of the game. The custom character will lose most of his stats but retains other information such as the Relationship Values with the love interests. Through this, it is the only game with a possible Marry Them All ending.
    • In the Minesweeper mode from Power Pro-kun Pocket 3, you can enter custom characters earned from clearing the Cyborg scenario and potentially max out their stats (or lose them forever if you trip on a mine).
    • The My Pennant mode is a Baseball season mode you can only enter if you have a custom character available that hasn't gone through it yet.