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Recurring Location

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"Couldn't really take in the scenery, I hadta' go fast."Top-to-bottom 

"Garwsh, this sure does bring back memories!"
Goofy, upon the party's return to Olympus Coliseum in Kingdom Hearts II

A place which is not the main hub or boss area in a series, but a minor place which appears over and over again within the same series.

Like Recurring Riff, but a place. Different from Nostalgia Level in that it is merely a recycled locale rather than a place meant to invoke memories.

Video Game Examples:

  • The Super Mario Bros. franchise mostly avoids this, the only places to feature consistently in the series being the Mushroom Kingdom, the main setting, and of course Bowser's Castle. Levels and areas often have recurring themes (such as Lethal Lava Land or Slippy-Slidey Ice World), but they're never indicated to be one and the same. There appears to be an exception to this in the form of Dry Dry Desert, a Shifting Sand Land that has featured with this exact name in at least four games of the franchise (Mario & Wario, Mario Kart 64, Paper Mario 64, and Mario Kart: Double Dash!!; plus three more appearances if you count its returns as a Classic Course in Mario Kart 7, Mario Kart 8, and Mario Kart Tour). The Mario Kart 64 version was translated into English as "Kalimari Desert", but it uses the same name ("Karakara Sabaku") in the original Japanese versions.
    • The Mario Kart games always have Mario Circuit, a beach level, Bowser's Castle, and Rainbow Road. Wario Stadium and a Donkey Kong track usually appear too.
  • The Legend of Zelda games often have incarnations of the Lost Woods, even in the games that don't take place in Hyrule. Death Mountain, Lake Hylia, Kakariko Village, and the Gerudo Desert often appear too.
  • The main Pokémon games always have a variation of Victory Road. In particular, Pokémon Gold and Silver recycles Victory Road from Pokémon Red and Blue, and Pokémon Black 2 and White 2 recycles the back half of Victory Road from Pokémon Black and White.
  • The Brookhaven and Alchemilla hospitals in the Silent Hill games.
  • In the Sonic the Hedgehog games, Green Hill Zone has appeared many times, in both older games and newer games. Likewise, zone themes like casino/carnival, tropical, desert, underwater ruins, etc are reused many times.
  • The Clock Tower in the Castlevania games.
  • The games in the Gradius series have almost always a level set in a field full of active volcanoes, an organic level, a Moai level and the mechanical Bacterion base.
  • The Tales Series has players go to the tree of Mana, Yggdrasil, in several of its games.
  • A non-video game example: The Biers pub is mentioned a lot in Discworld.
  • Playground Commons, Sandy Flats, and Dirt Yards appear a lot in the Backyard Sports games.
  • Every single Monkey Island game so far has had its own version of the Voodoo Lady's shack, generally as a one-stop shop for all things voodoo (titled The International House of Mojo in two appearances, and Voodoo & Things (formerly just Voodoo) in one). Monkey Island itself, however, appears in some form or another in every game except Tales (the climax of the second game takes place on Dinky Island, an atoll off the coast of Monkey Island, and the final confrontation occurs in the underground tunnels connecting Dinky and Monkey together).
  • Kingdom Hearts
    • Olympus Coliseum is the Trope Codifier, having appeared in all games in the franchise except Kingdom Hearts 3D [Dream Drop Distance]. And even then, one of the worlds featured in that game, Country of the Musketeers, reuses the Road to a Hero soundtrack to serve as the Musketeer theme. It's reached the point where the expansion of that world, simply called Olympus, serves as the tutorial in Kingdom Hearts III. And of the two songs from the franchise that played at the Opening Ceremony of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, both were related to Olympus Coliseum.
    • Agrabah is the runner up, appearing in six games, including the mobile game Kingdom Hearts χ [chi]. Wonderland takes the bronze prize with five appearances across the series, while Halloween Town and Neverland are tied with four visits. Neverland and Olympus Coliseum, in particular, are the only Disney worlds to be visited by all six of the main playable protagonists: Sora, Riku, Roxas, and Terra, Ventus, and Aqua.
    • As for original worlds, Radiant Garden/Hollow Bastion has appeared in every game in the series save for Kingdom Hearts: 358/2 Days, although Dream Drop Distance and Kingdom Hearts III only show it in cutscenes.
  • Metropolis (Aleero City) in the Ratchet & Clank games is the Platformer counterpart to Olympus Coliseum, being featured in three games, Ratchet & Clank (2002), Ratchet & Clank: Up Your Arsenal, and Ratchet & Clank Future: Tools of Destruction (as the tutorial). The city is also a DLC battle arena in Ratchet & Clank: Full Frontal Assault. It even represents the franchise in Play Station Move Heroes and PlayStation All-Stars Battle Royale.
    • Possibly due to the third in the series essentially being a return to the galaxy of the first in the series, Veldin, Rilgar, and Aridia appear in both games. Though in the case of Aridia, different outposts being visited: X11 as a very early location in the first game, X12 as a late-game location in the third.
    • The Blargian planet Orxon from the first game also reappears as arena in Deadlocked, still as polluted as ever, although it appears the Blarg are working to atone for Drek's actions by this point.
    • Meridian City, the capital of the Polaris Galaxy, appears in Tools of Destruction as Tachyon and the newly-summoned Cragmites wage genocide against the inhabitants. The city is mentioned a few times afterwards, and then reappears in Into the Nexus.
  • W(i/y)ndia of the Breath of Fire series.
  • The Hulle Granz Cathedral (aka Δ Hidden Forbidden Holy Ground, the area key words used to access it) in the .hack series. It is the only location to consistently show up in every single installment of the franchise, and something plot-important is practically guaranteed to happen there.
  • The World of Mana series has the Mana Tree, and the remote inaccessible land (Illucia / Pure Land / Mana Holy Land) that surrounds it and keeps it safe from human spoil.
  • Floor 60 of The Tower of Druaga.
  • Nintendo has started using Wuhu Island as a location associated with its cross-game Mii characters; it appears in Wii Fit, Wii Sports Resort, Pilotwings Resort, Mario Kart 7, and Super Smash Bros. for Wii U (both done as part of a Pilotwings stage and as a stage in itself).
  • GoldenEye (1997): The surface of Severnaya and the underground bunker within are revisited midway through the game.
  • Super Monkey Ball: Every game had at least one Space Zone and/or Eternal Engine stage. Also, Monkey Island has been the first world in all but 2 of the games in the series.
  • Final Fantasy XIV:
    • The Carteneau Flats are a PVP-only area, but it is reused for a job quest with the Summoner class and it's also where the last quest in the Heavensward story takes place.
    • Halatali is an optional dungeon from 2.0 that is later reused for a solo duty during 3.0 where you rescue Raubahn before his execution.
    • The Vault from near the end of 3.0 is similarly reused for a solo duty to rescue hostages in 3.1.
  • Each game in the Banjo-Kazooie series begins at Spiral Mountain, even if the rest of each game features a completely different Hub Level.
  • Nar Shadaa, "The Vertical City" is a location that Kyle Katarn visits in every game in the Dark Forces Saga. Thanks to its Wretched Hive status, it's generally home to informants that have information that Kyle needs. Its notorious No OSHA Compliance allows for some platforming and puzzles to traverse the levels.

Non-Video Game examples:


"It's Tatooine!"

We haven't been here before...

How well does it match the trope?

4.77 (13 votes)

Example of:

Main / RecurringLocation

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