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Consoles

  • Think Pong is the first video game ever? Well, our friends at That Other Wiki think otherwise. Depending on how you define "video game", the answer is different; the first on a digital computer was Spacewar! in 1961, but a missile simulator using analog circuitry and a cathode ray tube existed in 1947.
    • Speaking of which, the Atari VCS is NOT the first home game system, that goes to the Magnavox Odyssey.
      • Nor is the Atari VCS (a.k.a. Atari 2600) the first console to use ROM cartridges -- that honor belongs to the Fairchild Channel F. (The "cartridges" used in the original Magnavox Odyssey were basically just a block of jumpers that connected various pins together inside the Odyssey to select a particular game; all the games the Odyssey could ever play were already contained in the main unit. The Odyssey2, which did use ROM-containing game carts, didn't come out until a couple of years after the VCS.)
    • The first ever coin-op video game wasn't Pong either, but Computer Space (an adaptation of the early computer game Spacewar!) which was released a year earlier (by the same company, before they changed their name to Atari). However, Pong was the first successful coin-op. Atari later revamped Computer Space and rereleased it as Asteroids.
    • The EDSAC - and for that matter, the Ferranti NIMROD - both fall under the classification of digital computers, and both precede the PDP-1 in being the hosts of computer games. The first digital computer game was made a full ten years before Spacewar!.
  • Believe it or not, there were Sega titles for NES, before Sonic came to being, and LONG before the company left the console business. These, of course were ports made by other companies. Ports include, but are not limited to, Fantasy Zone, Space Harrier, and After Burner (the first by Tomy and the second two by Sunsoft or Tengen, depending on your region). These were also released for the Turbo Grafx 16/PC Engine.
  • Ghen War, a 1995 First-Person Shooter for the Saturn is a tragically unknown innovator in the genre. The game featured fully 3D environements and enemies a full year before Quake came out, extensive terrain deformation before Red Faction made it cool and an ambient soundtrack that changed depending on what was happening on the screen.
  • It has become a trend for people to give Nintendo consoles credit for innovating and coming up with new ideas when in reality, most of those "innovations" and technologies had already been used before by other game systems:
    • The Nintendo 64's gamepad wasn't the first game controller to use an analog stick; that was the Atari 5200's.
      • And PC games have enjoyed it for years before the N64 to a much better degree than the 5200.
      • The analog stick in the Nintendo 64 was operated by thumb, though.
    • The Virtual Boy wasn't the first portable console with 3D effects; the Tomytronic 3D was a extremely similar console that came out in 1983 and actually featured color graphics (in contrast the VB's monochromatic graphics).
    • The Vectrex used a light pen that allowed for touch-sensitive gaming decades before the Nintendo DS came out. The Game.Com also featured a touch screen, though in a rather crude fashion.
    • The Wii wasn't the first game system to incorporate motion controls, as there had been game accessories released in the 90's and the 2000's that featured this technology. And even before the 90's, there were the Pantomation and the Smartland SL 6401.
    • The Wii U's controller with the built-in screen and it's ability to play the console's games isn't exactly new. The Sega Nomad could play Sega Genesis/Mega Drive games and output to a TV at the same time.
    • The technology for the 3DS's glasses-free 3D screen was around since at least 2004. A notebook, the Sharp Actius RD3D used a glasses-free parallax barrier 3D screen, using the same exact technology the 3DS uses to achieve 3D. There was also a TV around the time too by the same company.
      • And guess who makes the screens in the 3DS? That's right-it's Sharp. They've had a close working relationship with Nintendo since the 1980s (as proven by the C1 NES TV, Twin Famicom, and Famicom Titler), and their portables, dating back to at least the Game Boy Advance, use Sharp LCD screens.
    • As far as wireless controllers, they've existed since the Atari 2600.
  • The Sega Genesis and SNES had online multiplayer, through a commercially failed device known as the XBAND. It was mostly Executive Meddling that killed it since nobody wanted to host the service. For portables, Nintendo had a cellphone-based service that remained in Japan, predating anything practical by two generations.
    • Before that, there was the XBAND's predecessor for the NES, the Tele Play Modem, made by the same company. Executive Meddling prevented it from ever getting released.
  • DLC is older than most people think. Atari had a service called GameLine where you could download games. And even after then, Nintendo had the BS Satelleview for the SNES. Sega also had the Sega Channel for the Genesis.
  • Unlimited Detail, it sounds great on paper. All you have to do is create objects out of "atoms" which are essentially points (from a point cloud). Except... this is not a new thing. The technology can be done either with voxels or perhaps more true to the point cloud, point sprites. Voxels have been around for decades. Point sprites have been around for at least 10 years, as a gaming benchmark tool had used it in one of their tests.
    • In fact, point sprites are used in fluid simulations, where the point sprites interact with each other like little balls. This can be done in real-time for games. And animated point sprites are something Unlimited Detail has yet to show.
  • Remember Humongous Entertainment's first batch of games? You know, Putt-Putt Joins the Parade, Fatty Bear's Birthday Surprise and Putt-Putt Goes to the Moon? Almost everyone played those off a CD-ROM under their Windows ports. Yes, we just said port. Almost no-one is familiar with their original DOS versions, let alone their first release on floppy disks.

Game Elements

  • There's a very cool article about this subject here.
  • The gaming press likes to credit Half Life with being the first FPS with a strong story that drives the gameplay, which is somewhat misleading. It may be true that Half Life was the first shooter to have a story told entirely in-game, but the idea of stories themselves in shooters was not truly new at the time. Both Marathon and System Shock placed a strong emphasis on storytelling in addition to combat years earlier, but they used a text-message-finding system to advance and expand their plots (there's an entry about it below).
  • In a strange version (both examples, the older and the newer are made by the same by the company) The Jjaro and maybe the W'rkncacnter first appeared in Pathways into Darkness, not Marathon. Though, it's likely they're in the same 'verse.
  • One of the most (in)famous examples: Metroid vs Halo. Metroid was released in 1986 and had a revolutionary sequel, Super Metroid (1994), long before Halo (2001) was released. The confusion stems from the first-person Metroid Prime (2002), which was in development before Halo even became first-person. The fact that Metroid Prime 2 and Halo 2 were released the same year (2004) and, likewise, Metroid Prime 3 and Halo 3 (2007), certainly didn't help things.
  • Tell me if this game premise reminds you of anything: Enemies are camping in a fortress made of solid blocks. You fling projectiles at said fortress, Wreaking Havok and attempting to kill all the enemies inside with as few shots as possible. Sounds like Angry Birds, doesn't it? A Flash game called Crush the Castle did it earlier, and even there, they got the idea from another game called Castle Clout.
  • Apparently, Casual games that don't require one to constantly press buttons or have a zillion shortcuts, the apparent scourge of gaming (ignore the MTV-gamers of the PlayStation and Xbox -- they don't count) are a new thing with the Nintendo Wii. What's kind of sad is that even PC gamers, supposed "smart gamers", are even saying this -- obviously they're ignoring the fact that not only have games that fit under the definition of "Casual" like Snood and Bejeweled have been around for even longer than the Wii.
    • For that matter, games that are now considered "Casual" by their simplicity have been around before many gamers were born. Most Arcade games are by most hardcore gamers' definition "Casual", as are several early games. So apparently, Casual games ruined the market forever, but if one considers the fact that Casual games have been in the market longer than most "Core games" .. damn, gaming was Ruined FOREVER before it even hit the arcade!
  • Some people have speculated that Calling Your Attacks comes from the Street Fighter video game franchise, the first Fighting Game to give names to the character's special attacks so players talking about the game could refer to them. However, Anime has been doing this since at least the early 70s (at least from Mazinger Z, if not earlier), and it has antecedents in Chinese wuxia novels throughout the twentieth century; Street Fighter came out in 1987.
    • Calling out the name of the attacks was a habit of Wong Fei-Hong a real martial artist who lived in the late 19th and early 20th century (making it Older Than Television).
      • Calling your attacks has been a standard of Kendo (Men! Do! and Te!) since the training method's creation.
  • Warcraft 3 was not the first strategy game to use RPG elements, as many of its fans believe. The concept first appeared in New World Computing's "King's Bounty" in 1990 and featured more prominently in the same company's Heroes of Might and Magic series, starting in 1995. That's also the source for the concept of W3's heroes.
  • Many people think that the Fighting Game genre started with Street Fighter, though games like Yie Ar Kung-Fu, Karate Champ, Karateka and Way of the Exploding Fist predate it by years, going back to Bug Byte "Kung Fu" on the ZX Spectrum. There are some people who think that the genre was started by Street Fighter II. These people are apparently unfamiliar with what the number 2 usually means.
  • Resident Evil is often credited for inventing Survival Horror, when all it did was invent that name for it and bring the genre into the mainstream. The Alone in The Dark series invented the actual gameplay model years earlier. Capcom's own Sweet Home -- despite being a horror RPG -- also has elements of the genre, and predates Alone in the Dark by three years, not to mention being the inspiration for Resident Evil in the first place. And if you really want to stretch, you could even trace the lineage back as far as Haunted House for the Atari 2600.
  • While we're on the subject, Resident Evil 4 causes a lot of mistakes like this. While the game brought many new features along with its revamped gameplay, it's slightly annoying to hear people discuss features that have been series mainstays as though they're unique to this game (ex: What's that? You think it's neat how fallen enemies might not actually be dead, it's annoying that you can't move while shooting, and it's funny that green herbs look like pot? Gee, you don't say...). One has to wonder if any of these new fans are aware of what the number following a title actually means.
  • Much like the Street Fighter II example above, many people think Doom was the first First-Person Shooter. Doom wasn't even id Software's first FPS (that would be Hovertank 3D).
  • Since Doom 3, any game that lets you find various logs to help figure out the story is inevitably compared to it -- although Bioshock has somehow dodged this. Doom 3 is by far the most popular game to include this, but it's far from the first. In First Person Shooters alone, the device goes as far back as 1988's The Colony, and if you include games outside that genre, the list becomes truly unwieldly, although Myst is likely the most prominent.
    • Bioshock's use of logs can most likely be attributed to its status as a Spiritual Successor to the System Shock games. System Shock was released in 1994 -- not the first to use the trope, but one of the earlier examples. The developers thought that the current technology was incapable of simulating interactions with enough fidelity not to murder any immersion. Similar reasoning probably applied to most of the early examples.
    • Also, Marathon uses this. The PC has to go through the game and get the story and missions from Terminals. That doesn't help clear up the story much, though...
    • 1998's Thief: The Dark Project and its 2000 sequel Thief II make extensive use of books, scrolls, and notes to provide clues and flesh out the back story.
    • The 1995 sci-fi adventure BioForge also uses a great number of logs and computer consoles to help move the story along.
  • Many players think that Castlevania: Symphony of the Night is the first Metroidvania Castlevania game; non-linear gameplay dates as far back as Castlevania II: Simon's Quest, although Symphony went a long ways toward polishing it (read: making it playable without a strategy guide).
    • And even before that, Vampire Killer for the MSX was broken up into multiple small Metroidvania-style levels.
      • Which was released (on October 30, 1986 in Japan) only a few short months after Metroid itself (released on August 6, 1986 in Japan), meaning that Castlevania almost did "Metroid-style gameplay" even before Metroid did it.
  • Many people who started playing World of Warcraft without playing the games before it have no idea that the franchise existed before the MMORPG. This has prompted situations like people who hear Warcraft 3 mentioned saying, "There's a World of Warcraft 3? I didn't even know about 2!" A large section of the player base wasn't even aware of the MMORPG genre before it came out, leading them to believe it pioneered far more than it did; overall, the game is a refinement of what had been done before. On top of that, the game features piles of pop culture references, many of which the fan base mistakenly believes Blizzard invented.
    • This has gone far enough that, nowadays, WoW fans will often accuse other MMOs of ripping off their favourite game for using gameplay mechanics and concepts that WoW ripped off from someone else. On the other hand, those who loathe World of Warcraft and all it stands for will make the same complaint of any other MMO with no regard to such things as "release dates."
      • It has gotten so bad you'll see them accuse anything and everything of ripping off WoW, including Dungeons & Dragons, a game which was ripped off primarily by WoW, not to mention the fact that WoW itself is a descendent of Roguelike games, which are descended from Rogue, which was an early attempt at making a computer game out of D&D.
    • Or accuse Warhammer of being a WoW rip-off, which is funny because the reverse is almost certainly true. Still Tycho of Penny Arcade says it best.
    • In fact, Blizzard once "announced" a new game as an April Fools joke: Warcraft: Heroes of Azeroth, a strategy game and prequel to World of Warcraft. The game in question was Warcraft 3.
    • The World of Warcraft expansion Mists Of Panderia is accused of knocking off Kung Fu Panda by having a race of Pandas with a new Monk class. However, the Pandaren have been around since before Warcraft III was released. It started as one of Blizzard's April Fool's jokes announcing a fifth playable race.
  • In the MMORPG Runescape, when the Tower of Life quest was released, involving a homunculus, many Fullmetal Alchemist fans assumed it was a ripoff. The Runescape homunculus bears little resemblance to the ones from FMA, and both are named for an old term for "artificial human".
    • Funny that Runescape should wind up next to World of Warcraft on the list, since there's a dedicated number of people convinced that Runescape's basically a watered down version of it. It was released several months before World of Warcraft was even announced. Wrap your heads around that for a minute.
  • Valkyrie Sky is the first MMO Shoot'Em Up? Look up again, fella. That title belongs to the now defunct Bugs Rider published by Game & Game nearly 2 year prior to Valkyrie Sky Beta. Though you may argue that Valkyrie Sky is the first MMO Vertical Shooter, since Bugs Rider is a horizontal one.
    • But even "the first MMO Vertical Shooter" may not even true if you count Lazeska: Sky Fantasy. A game that never had a chance to see the light, but it was first introduced back in 2006 while Valkyrie Sky started Beta in late 2009.
  • Several people have talked about how innovative the adjustable camera of Super Mario 64 on the N64 (1996) was. How using polygons instead of pixels in the arcade Hard Drivin' (1988) created a new look for games that had never been seen before. And how Metal Gear for the MSX 2 (1987) was the first game that had you sneaking around. However, there was a game which had all these elements and came out before all of them, but for some reason nobody gives the 1983 arcade game I, Robot credit for them.
    • It should be noted that Castle Wolfenstein (1981) was the first true stealth game, incorporating many of the elements that stealth games still thrive on. Yet it still remains in the shadow of Metal Gear.
  • For all its popularity, many people assume that Pokémon is the first Mons collection/raising game; those people forget that Digital Devil Story: Megami Tensei was released in the eighties. It also wasn't the first Mons anime; Megami Tensei had an OAV in 1987.
  • Critics and fans are quick to label any sandbox that features driving and shooting a Grand Theft Auto clone. But the original GTA games were isometric, and GTA 3 closely resembled, and has a continuing rivalry with, a game called Driver released two years prior. And then there's Hunter, which was released on the Amiga by Activision in 1991.
    • Similarly, some people believe that the series started with Grand Theft Auto III, conveniently forgetting the number three in the title.
      • Infact, GTA III isn't even the first 3D sandbox game by Rockstar. The honor goes to Body Harvest.
      • Driving freely around cities, picking up missions at will, shooting and blowing up everything. Quarantine did all that first. You didn't get out of your car and steal others, but the rest is there.
        • Arguably the ability to move around at your own pace with no need to do missions in a certain order goes back to RPGs such as the first Final Fantasy (though there may be more obscure earlier examples). The ability to not die (or at least, instantly respawn without dealing with a game over screen) was made famous by The Secret of Monkey Island, whose sequel Monkey Island 2: LeChuck's Revenge has a proto-sandbox mechanic in that it allows you to go back and forth between three different islands and complete a large proportion of the game in any order you like, without dying or having to fight anyone. There are some opportunities to affect the final ending in both games, which predates games like Soul Blade where you can do a similar thing.
  • Every third-person shooter with a cover system is doomed to be compared to Gears of War. This in spite of Gears' developers openly admitting on several occasions that they got the mechanic from an obscure Play Station 2 game called Kill Switch.
    • There was an earlier game on the N64 called Operation: Winback with a similar cover system.
    • All of this ignores that many such games featured "leaning" mechanics, allowing players to effectively utilize cover by only exposing a minimal portion of their avatar when returning fire. One early example was the first System Shock.
  • A number of people accuse Rock Band of being a rip-off of Guitar Hero, unaware that:
    • A) Rock Band developer, Harmonix, were the original developers of Guitar Hero, and
    • B) The concept predates Guitar Hero by at least 8 years: Konami's Guitar Freaks was first released in 1998.
      • In fact it was the publisher, RedOctane, that first approached Harmonix with the idea, having previously been involved in developing the instrument controllers for Guitar Freaks. Even the concept of a 5-button guitar game predates Guitar Hero; RedOctane's third-party Guitar Freaks controllers have five buttons (despite GF being only a 3-button game), and these controllers were around as early as maybe 2001 or 2002.
    • In the X-Play review for the American release of beatmania, after giving it a poor score, co-host Morgan Webb accused it of being one of many Guitar Hero rip-offs.
  • Some people feel that Sim City is a more boring clone of The Sims. Funny thing is, Sim City is over 20 years old now, and pretty much invented the sandbox-simulation genre.
    • Actually, "sandbox-simulation" games also predate Sim City for about 20 years. Hamurabi (1969) might be a good classic example. Sims, on the other hand, is somewhat similar to Little Computer People (1985).
      • Hamurabi was a management sim, not a sandbox sim (a sandbox sim is essentially a gamewhere you place all the buildings yourself).
  • Remember the trailers for Need for Speed:Hot Pursuit (2010) placing great emphasis on the moving wings and spoilers? Polyphony Digital did it first with Gran Turismo 4.
  • Think mature-themed and mature games were introduced with the Play Station?? Sorry, they already had soft-porn games in the early 80s, done up by none other than Sierra. There might have been even more made earlier too...
    • Speaking of Sierra, it was established in 1979.
      • For Hardcore Mature Material, you have Alicesoft. The Rance series has been running since 1989. Second Longest running adult series, after Leisure Suit Larry.
      • The fist adult computer game in Japan was 1982's Night Life, published by Koei. The next year brought the first obscene visual novels, including Enix's Joshi Ryou Panic and Falcom's Oooku Maruhi Monogatari.
    • There were also pornographic games on the Atari 2600 (if you can call them that), courtesy of developer Mystique. Beat 'em and eat 'em, Philly Flasher, Cathouse Blues, Jiggolo, Custer's Revenge, Westard Ho...and that's not even scratching the surface.
    • Bubble Bath Babes, anyone? What about Monster Party, which features gore? Or Bionic Commando, which has Hitler's head explode in gory detail?
  • Mario's 180 sideways somersault move in Super Mario 64 came first in the Game Boy version of Donkey Kong.
    • In fact, the opening and the whole slew of in-game moves in DK'94 clearly showed off Mario's excellent acrobatic skills (other than his high jumps) for the first time.
    • Also, Charles Martinet's first game as Mario was not Super Mario 64. It was Mario's FUNdamentals, released a year earlier.
    • Likewise, the US name "Toadstool" was changed to "Peach" not in Super Mario 64, but in Yoshi's Safari.
  • The beat-em-up Renegade (1986) is often called a "Double Dragon ripoff" (which came out in 1987) by less informed people, even though it was made by the same developer (Technos Japan Corp.) and predated Double Dragon by a year.
  • Customizing Counter-Strike servers to add the Unreal Tournament "Headshot!" "Multi kill!" "Killing spree!" etc. sound effects has become such a wide-spread practice that many CS players, unaware of the now-less-popular game, conclude that they are "CS sounds." (Note that, while Counter-Strike, in its original form, is in fact slightly older than Unreal Tournament, the use of the sound bytes in the former is the result of server mods, is not part of the game itself, and were obviously added after the release of UT.)
    • This carries over to another Valve franchise, too; in this case, Team Fortress 2. This time around, the writer of the mod was smart enough to realize that the Unreal Tournament sounds, in fact, did not originate from Counter-Strike, and attributed it to the game they came from... Quake.
  • The Create-A-Class system in Modern Warfare. While it was one of the most popular games to have such a system, it wasn't the first (Battlefield 2 and First Encounter Assault Recon, for example, both had similar class-based multiplayer components and predated CoD4 by two years).
    • And FEAR itself wasn't the first to effectively combine shooting and melee fighting (possibly among others, Oni came four years earlier), but again it was one of the most popular ones to do so.
    • Within the series, one of the things Call of Duty Black Ops became notable for was actually giving the player character(s) a face and voice. Except Finest Hour did so first. Call of Duty 2 also at least gave all of its player characters faces, and Modern Warfare 2 had one of its protagonists speaking during a cutscene.
  • Hey, Drawn to Life is so innovative, never mind that Magic Pengel and Graffiti Kingdom did that concept 5-7 years before it. In 3D!
  • Kingdom Hearts has this theme about memories, huh? Well a similar theme was done in Persona 2 a couple years ago...and that's not even counting the amounts of short stories about similar themes that have probably existed long before Nyarlathotep tried to manipulate Jun's memories....
  • Speed modifiers in Dance Dance Revolution, often thought to have debuted in DDRMAX: Dance Dance Revolution 6th Mix, appear as far back as the Dance Dance Revolution Solo sub-series and the two licensed Dancing Stage games. The "boost" modifier (which causes notes to increase speed as they scroll up) is also a feature taken from Solo.
    • Similarly, the difficulty rating of 9 (on the pre-DDR X scale) is slightly Older Than They Think. Thought to have appeared first in DDR 3rd Mix, it first appeared in DDR 2nd Mix Club Version, a version of DDR with songs from the Beatmania series.
    • The first DDR game to run at 60 frames per second is Dancing Stage feat. True Kiss Destination, which was released sometime between 2nd and 3rd Mixes. The first well-known DDR game to do so is 5th Mix.
  • Jake Hunter Detective Story was criticized for being a cheap cash-in on Capcom's Ace Attorney series by many professional critics, even though it's actually a localization of the latest installment of an older detective game series known as Detective Saburo Jinguji, which began on the Famicom Disk System all the way back in 1987. Part of the blame can be placed on Aksys themselves for cutting half of the game's content and their arguably unnecessary decision to Americanize the game's storyline (whereas Ace Attorney is filled with numerous pun-based names that wouldn't had translated well if they were kept in Japanese, the Jinguji series on the other hand has a decidedly more serious tone, as well as settings that are obviously based on real Japanese locations such as Shinjuku). They later re-released the game with a newer (but still Americanized) translation and all of the missing content restored, but the damage has already been done.
  • The difficulty name "Lunatic" appeared in the 1992 Shoot'Em Up Super Aleste, four years before the Touhou series began.
    • There are Touhou fans who dismiss other Bullet Hell shooters as ripoffs. Never mind that danmaku shooters have been around as early as Recca (1992).
  • The Cutscene goes at least as far back as Pac-Man (1980).
  • Harvest Moon is a Farmville rip-off. Yes, there are people who believe so.
    • As farming-based Flash games for Facebook go, Farmville is not even the first. Farm Town was.
  • Tactics Ogre was at one point referred to as a rip-off of Final Fantasy Tactics, a game with very similar key features. This was, of course, because Tactics Ogre was released in North America on PS 1 after FFT. The game is actually a PS 1 remake of an SNES game, pre-dating FFT two years. Also, the similarities are due to some of the same designers working on both, so really, neither one is a "rip off" per se.
    • And even Tactics Ogre wasn't the first with those features...FireEmblem predated it by a few years, and Nobunaga's Ambition and Romance of the Three Kingdoms has been around since the mid-'80s.
  • Card systems for arcade games, commonly associated with Initial D Arcade Stage (2002), date as far back as the Neo Geo arcade system (1990).
  • While the Capcom vs. Whatever series widely popularized the concept of 2-on-2 (and later, 3-on-3) Team Battles, The King of Fighters laid the groundwork for such an idea back in its 1994 inception. Admittedly, there it was more of a battle royale, "last man standing" survival affair, and it wasn't until KOF 2003 that the series included tag-ins (called "shifts"). While many fanboys are quick to note that SNK blatantly copied Capcom (which is mostly true, although both companies cribbed off of each other on numerous occasions), fighting game enthusiasts tend to overlook this detail.
    • ... although even tag battles were modeled long ago, thanks to Kizuna Tag Encounter, which was also the brainchild of SNK.
    • The Vs. series, particularly the Marvel vs. Capcom titles, is also known for the implementation of Aerial Raves, an air combos that involve launching the opponent into the air and juggling them while midair. However, 1995's Suiko Enbu (also known as Outlaws of the Lost Dynasty or Dark Legend) predates them with a similar juggling system that involves spinning knockdowns, groundbounces, and wallbounces (and this was over a decade before they became commonplace in the Vs. series). Ironically, Suiko Enbu was developed by Data East, the company infamous for being sued by Capcom over the blatant parallelism between Fighter's History and SFII.
  • Dimension-shifting in side scrolling shooters: Salamander (1986) came into mind of many gamers, but it's far from the first side scrolling shooter that has dimension-shifting. The idea goes back as far as the arcade game Vanguard (1981).
  • The Other Wiki proved that Quick Time Event didn't started with Shenmue like many gamers think. Cyberswine (1997) predated Shenmue by 2 years, and Dragon's Lair (1983) predated it by 16 years!
  • Young'uns these days credit Blizzard with creating the first MMORPG; others just as misguided will correct them and refer to Ever Quest. Ultima Online was the first game specifically referred to as an MMORPG; prior to the naming, they were called graphical Multi-User Dungeons (MUDs), the earliest examples of which date back to the 80s! The first fully graphical multiplayer RPG was AOL's Neverwinter Nights (not that one) back in 1991, compare to Ultima Online's 1997 release. Oh, it's great fun to tell stories of games prior to WoW, where players could kill other, unconsenting players and take their possessions as loot, then be hunted as criminals and banned from towns as murderers! Imagine losing stats permanently when dying, rushing back to your corpse (after someone resurrected you) before someone looted it, compared to zipping right back and popping back up, fully equipped and at half health and mana.
    • And as time passes, It Gets Worse. Many games coming out after World of Warcraft were derided as "WoW-clones" for directly copying the systems and sometimes look of World of Warcraft. There were some real problems with other companies trying to capitalize on the success but failing because they didn't actually understand what made the game great. However, it's now changed that the response to calling something a "WoW-clone" is "Well, it's an MMO! What else do you expect?" Which ignores the significant variety in games and playstyles that existed before or alongside World of Warcraft that were also MMORPGs. Raids, quests, progressively more ridiculous equipment, linear storylines, etc. are now seen as the definition of MMOs, even though some of those were in completely unrecognizable forms or nonexistent altogether before World of Warcraft. World of Warcraft may have refined a lot of things that needed refining, and ultimately made the genre accessible to a wide audience, but it also left out features that were extremely popular in games before it came out that in their own time were thought of as the definition of MMOs. The MMO genre is less of a genre than a wide variety of ideas that simply require many players connected together online.
  • Tell me if you recognize this setting: Colonists on an alien world must fight among each other for limited resources while constantly under seige by parasitic mind worms controlled by an emerging consciousness produced by the neural interconnections of the native flora. That's right, it's Frank Herbert's Pandora book series which inspired Sid Meier's Alpha Centauri.
  • There's the belief that Quake is the first fully 3D (As in, drawing all aspects of 3D) FPS and Super Mario 64 being the first full 3D Platformer when in fact a Play Station launch title Jumping Flash came before them. And it was a hybrid of sorts.
  • The Boss Rush phenomenon dates back to 1985, with Space Harrier. The last level was nothing but previous bosses.
  • The developers of The Force Unleashed spent a lot of time in pre-release interviews for the first game talking about how they'd incorporated a materials-system into their engine like it had never been done before and would revolutionize how objects in the environment react to physical force; Half-Life 2 did it four years earlier and to a much greater extent.
    • In a meta example, Jurassic Park: Trespasser featured realistic environment physics six years before Half-Life 2. That said, Trespasser's physics engine was an inspiration for the one used in Half-Life 2.
  • Remember when the NPC daily schedules were touted as innovative in The Elder Scrolls: Oblivion? Sure, they were new for The Elder Scrolls... but Ultima V already did it in 1988.
  • Back on the subject of Street Fighter (see above), it's not quite as innovative with its game mechanics as people may think, even with Street Fighter II being the fighting game Trope Codifier. Multiple-level super meters, air blocking, chain combos, EX moves, air dashing? Darkstalkers had all of that and more back in '94. 2.5D gameplay and Ultra Combos? Street Fighter EX (co-developed by Arika) says hi. The Guard Break in EX even opens up the opponent for a free attack like a charged Focus Attack in IV. Hell, some of the moves in IV were carried over from EX; Bison/Dictator's Death Tower back throw was introduced in EX, while Blanka's Shout of Earth Ultra in Super IV was originally his Meteor Combo in EX2. Street Fighter may have a lot of copycats, but even SF isn't 100% original; if they're not comparing notes with other fighters, the series is just as likely to take inspiration from Capcom's own stable of fighters.
    • And speaking of Darkstalkers, it may come as a shock to some that Morrigan's Darkness Illusion was the first move to use the button press sequence (LP, LP, F, LK, HP) that is now associated with Akuma's Shun Goku Satsu.
  • Some people consider Final Fantasy Adventure a Link's Awakening ripoff. Final Fantasy Adventure came out in June/November 1991, Link's Awakening was released in mid-1993.
  • Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare was not the first FPS to introduce a bullet penetration system. The first one (or earliest ones) to do so (albeit, improperly) was GoldenEye 007, where anything that wasn't level geometry sans windows and doors, could be shot through with the right weapon. This ranged from a low penetration of shooting through boxes and enemies, all the way up to shooting through steel doors and "bulletproof glass".
    • Another jab at Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare, it's certainly not the first game of its genre (being a modern warfare FPS). Nor the first popular one (arguably). Battlefield 2 was a "modern warfare" game released two years earlier, which was arguably based on the Battlefield 1942 mod, Desert Combat, released somewhere in 2003. And then we could claim the obsession with "terrorists versus counter terrorist" games spanning years earlier were in the same boat.
  • The Dragon Quest series may have the Slime as its Mascot Mook, but Dragon Quest I wasn't the first game to have a slime be the first and weakest enemy in the game; The Tower of Druaga and Hydlide did so before.
  • The first video game to have an Easter Egg is routinely credited to Atari 2600's Adventure (1979), but in fact Easter Eggs have been found in two Atari arcade games (Owen Rubin's initials in Orbit and Skydiver, both from 1978), and no fewer than three games for the obscure Fairchild Channel F console (Brad Reid-Seith hid his name in 1978's Video Whisball and Alien Invasion, while Michael Glass's name can be found in the 1976 Demo Cart)
  • On This Very Wiki, The page for Anomaly Warzone Earth cites the game as the first "Reverse Tower Defense" (aka Tower Offense) game. However, the first game of this type was actually Bokosuka Wars, which having been released in 1983, not only predates Anomaly Warzone Earth by 27 years, it also predates every "standard" Tower Defense game.
  • The X Universe series is often though of as a singleplayer clone of Eve Online by the uninformed, but the first X game came out four years before EVE. EVE's story also borrows heavily from EV Nova.

Other Media References

  • So many people seem to be under the impression that Bahamut being portrayed as a dragon was from Final Fantasy, but it was done in Dungeons and Dragons long before Final Fantasy did it.
    • Many people complain about D&D incorporating elements from MMORPGs into 4th edition. So many people don't realize that MMORPGs and MUDs have in fact incorporated elements from D&D into THEIR genre first, making it an odd case of a copier is being copied by the source material in order to seem more like it use to be, but game systems tend to copy each other a lot so this trope goes back a ways.
  • When you hear the name "Morrigan", what do you think of? A fighting succubus or a disapproving sorceress? But what about the ancient celtic triune goddess both characters were named after?
  • Many people who get a first glance at Iori Yagami from The King of Fighters automatically assume he's an Emo Kid due to his clothes and hairstyle. In fact, Iori debuted in 1995, years before the Internet popularized emo music and fashion. Iori's theme music isn't even rock: it's funk and jazz, primarily.
    • Needless to say, Emos existed (both as a musical genre and as a visual style) since the 1980s.
  • While one of the most recognizable quotes from Castlevania: Symphony of the Night may be "What is a man? A miserable little pile of secrets!", the (mis)quote is actually an old psychological aphorism, enough so to be refuted by French author and statesmen Andre Malraux in 1955.
    • Another popular quote from the same game is "The only thing necessary for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing." This quote is generally attributed to either Leo Tolstoy or Edmund Burke, and is probably older than either.
  • Lampshaded in Max Payne 2. A character Vinnie Gognitti wasn't aware that Maxwell's Demon, villain of the in-game comics Captain Baseballbatboy, had been invented quite before the comics. The ignorance had dire consequences for him.
    • To be fair, there was no way his answer was going to be satisfactory, considering the situation.
      • The Maxwell's Demon referred to by Vlad is actually a thought experiment intended to demonstrate something about the Second Law of Thermodynamics.
  • The iconic theme music from Tetris, "Korobeiniki", was first published in 1861.
    • Granted, it's not exactly uncommmon knowledge that the standard soundtrack consists of Russian folk music. It's not the first time a video game has used public domain tunes either.
    • The "lock delay" mechanic, thought to be an innovation of newer games in the series, has been around as early as 1988, when it was used in Sega's Japan-only arcade version of the game.
  • The Japanese neologism, "Ansatsuken" (assassination fist), aside from being misinterpreted as the name of Ryu and Ken's Ryoga-Ken style (or, as it's sometimes interpreted, Shotokan or just "nameless fighting style", is often thought as a term made up by Capcom's writers. In truth, the manga and anime Fist of the North Star (which debuted in 1983) used the term years before the first Street Fighter game was released in 1987 and its been used in other fictional works in Japan as well (it might be older than Hokuto no Ken though).
  • The Sonic the Hedgehog vs. Dragon Ball argument has been going a long time over who invented the idea of seven gems (Chaos Emeralds vs. the Dragon Balls) uniting to create 'a miracle' but in truth neither of them invented it and it is seated in ancient mythology.
    • Even worse when you find out that the whole Super Sonic thing was a Shout-Out to DBZ.
  • Gaz sure was witty with that "Don't call me Shirley" line in Call of Duty 4. It was funnier when Airplane! did it 25 years earlier.
    • There are also people who think Wallcroft's "Nothing takes five minutes!" line in Modern Warfare 3 came directly from the game, rather than being one of the series' many references to Black Hawk Down.
  • Many believe that the battle cry of "CHESTO!" was popularized by Rishu Togo (from 2002's Super Robot Wars Original Generation fame) and his students (the prime example being Sanger Zonvolt, who debuted in 2003's Super Robot Wars Alpha 2). This particular warcry was a stock phrase used by Japanese martial artists and samurai in general. Media-wise, one of the first uses of "CHESTO!" was back in 1989, where it was frequently shouted by Kousoku Sentai Turboranger's Youhei Hama/Blue Turbo.
  • At least some people think that the "Trespassers will be shot. Survivors will be shot again" joke originated from one of the Grand Theft Auto games. Apparently this is as old as the immigration rush in the US... back in the 1800s.
  • This forum post suggests that Geralt of Rivia, a character who first appeared in a short story published in 1986, is a Sephiroth clone. The thread-starter is a known Troll so this may have been deliberate.
  • Despite what the Internet seems to think, the line "Hey you, get off [of] my cloud!" did not originate from Hotel Mario. It is the title of a Rolling Stones song from 1965, before video games as we know them even existed. The line was also delievered by Verminous Skumm, in the 1980s.
  • One of the most quoted lines in Meet the Heavy:

 Heavy Weapons Guy: Some people think they can outsmart me. Maybe. (Beat) Maybe. I've yet to meet one that can outsmart bullet.

    • ...is in fact a variant of this line, in RoboCop:

Meta

  • Haters of Final Fantasy XII will probably tell you that Sakimoto is a new guy, or make the fallacy that Final Fantasy XII was his first work on the Final Fantasy series - ignoring Final Fantasy Tactics and the Final Fantasy Tactics Advance games...both of those predate Final Fantasy XII by 3 - 9 years. He's also by no means new to game development...you'll probably see his name (as well as Masharu Iwata) in the credits of any Ogre Battle games, or Revolter, which was released in 1988. Way Older Than They Think.
  • Related to the above, most people will give you the impression that Nomura first started working with Square around Final Fantasy VII, and some may tell you he was working with them with Final Fantasy VI. Ignoring of course, that he was actually hired long before those games were even in production. Did you know he was actually working with the series as long ago as Final Fantasy IV? Sure he was only a debugger there, but did you also know he was a graphic designer in Final Fantasy V, too? And Chrono Trigger? And Super Mario RPG?
  • Final Fantasy X is often credited as Squaresoft's first game on the Play Station 2 -- The Bouncer predates it by a year.
  • For a company that's known for making video games, many people are surprised when they learn Nintendo has been around since 1889. Naturally they weren't making video games all that time; they were originally a playing card company, and started with the game hanafuda. Nintendo still makes playing cards and card games, even continuing to make hanafuda cards. They didn't even get into making toys until Gunpei Yokoi joined the company in the 1960's.
    • Think of it this way. Parker Brothers is only 6 years older than Nintendo. Yes, that Parker Brothers. The one that made Monopoly, yes.
  • Most Japanese electronics giants one would consider Nintendo competitors nowadays were created only after electronics became a viable business. Sony is a relatively venerable example in this group, having been founded in 1946.
  • A relative newcomer then, given that Sega (yes, that Sega) was founded in 1940 in, of all places, Honolulu, Hawaii by three Americans to make coin operated amusements for visiting American GI's. It wasn't even moved to Japan until over a decade later, by another American named David Rosen who was associated with the company from the early 50's to the mid 90's. Even then it wasn't a fully Japanese company until The Great Video Game Crash of 1983, before which it had the same parent company as Paramount Television. Sega's name isn't of Japanese origin either. It's an abbreviation for Service Games, the original name of the company.
  • Another example is Coleco, known for creating one of Atari 2600's competitors: the Colecovision. Coleco's name is an acronym of the company's earlier name: Connecticut Leather Company. The company originally marketed leather goods to shoemakers, and first ventured over into "fun" items by offering leather craft kits featuring popular characters.
  • In a related meta-example, many gamers consider Nintendo an oddity in that they actually sell their game systems with a profit margin, instead of selling the hardware for a loss and making revenue from software licenses. In actuality, this was a standard practice for the industry prior to the Sony PlayStation.
    • In fact, it was Atari that switched to the "Sell the console at a loss" model; however, their refusal to grant software licenses contributed greatly to The Great Video Game Crash of 1983. (They sued to prevent third-party licensing of their hardware and lost).
  • Some people refer to Warrior Within as Prince of Persia 2. They're apparently too young to have heard of the original 2-D game, or its actual numbered sequel Prince of Persia 2: The Shadow And The Flame. (Warrior Within is actually the fifth Prince of Persia game.)
  • The highly addictive electronic boardgame Snake did not originate on the Nokia 5110, but it does owe its status as the most played video game in the world to its appearance on Nokia phones.
    • More specifically, the game as we know it was first ported to a home computer in 1978.
  • The street racing franchise Need for Speed did not actually start at Underground, contrary to what many people (and some gaming magazines and websites) believe. Underground was indeed the first ricer game in the franchise, but there were a few NFS games that preceeded Underground: Need for Speed 1 (+ SE), 2 (+ SE), III: Hot Pursuit, High Stakes, Porsche Unleashed, Hot Pursuit 2, an early racing MMO called Need for Speed: Motor City Online, and two rebrands of the V-Rally franchise. They were all very successful, too, until the failure of Hot Pursuit 2 prompted a franchise reboot. The key difference was that you couldn't tune your car, so they are considered "uncool" today by the fans of the franchise's later games.
    • In some of those you could tune your car. However, you can't do so in some of the newer titles, as all you can do is cosmetic changes. That people refer to that as "tuning" doesn't make it so.
  • Mario is older than some people think. Many people think he debuted in Super Mario Bros. in 1985, though he had been in Mario Bros. before that in 1983, and his true first appearance was in Donkey Kong in 1981, though he was called "Jumpman" then.
    • This is fairly common knowledge.
  • Many people believe that the first version of Hudson Soft's Bomberman was on the Nintendo Famicom in 1987. There were actually at least two earlier versions: a version for the Sinclair ZX Spectrum in 1983, released both as Bomber Man (two words) and as Eric and the Floaters (the latter being the more widely known name); and a version for the Amstrad CPC464 which Hudson demonstrated (on a smart-card system which they were also demonstrating) in 1984.
    • Likewise, in 1983 on the Speccy, Hudson also released Cannon Ball aka Bubble Buster. Never heard of it? You more likely know it as Pang.
  • You know that Title Scream in the theme for the movie adaptation of Mortal Kombat? It actually debuted in the commercial for the console ports.
  • IGN said many times that the Backyard Sports series started around the dawn of the Play Station 2 (after when the editors think games died). The series actually released its first game in 1997, a few years after the release of the PS 1 and long before the Play Station 2. (In fact, it was released around the same time as IGN's favorite games.)
  • For many years following the release of Ocarina of Time, many people thought that Zelda was a new series.
  • It isn't hard to find fans who still think Final Fantasy VII is the first ever game in the series, despite the obvious number in the title. One reason why Final Fantasy VIII sold so well when it came out and quickly developed a Hatedom from the fans, was because they thought it was a sequel. Very ridiculous, since the roman numeral "VII" stands for, well, you know... seven. Little do they know that around FFVII's release, the series has been around for ten years.
  • There are people who think Sephiroth from Final Fantasy VII is the first "effeminate villain" (and he honestly isn't even that effeminate compared to some of these examples). Obviously, you can tell who has probably never seen the art for the Emperor of Final Fantasy II. Or the troubled and manipulated final boss of Dragon Quest IV who Sephiroth appears to be an Expy of, Psaro the Manslayer.
  • This is a problem in general for poor Final Fantasy II. Beloved party members dying? FFII did it first and did it the most. Angsty and grim world or plot? FFII's world is hanging out way on the far side of that scale. A villain who aspires to godhood? If Emperor Mateus trying to (and for a a little while, succeeding in) conquer heaven and hell doesn't count, I don't know what does. A final boss that falls to a stiff breeze? Blood Sword + Emperor = two-turn victory. La Resistance fighting off the evil empire? Look at the Big Bad's title. Dragoons debuted with Ricard/Richard, not Kain. Heck, this was the first game with a real plot, bare-boned as it may be.
  • Fire Emblem has a lot of examples mostly caused by No Export for You: Many players expressed their bewilderment that Nosferatu was changed from Dark to Light magic in Path of Radiance. What they don't realize is, Nosferatu (called Rezire in the Japanese version) was actually a light magic spell to begin with, first appearing in the 3rd game. It was, in fact, the GBA games that changed it from Light to Dark, and PoR restored it. Unfortunately, since the localizers got the GBA games first, they chose a very dark magic sounding name for it, making the transition pretty strange.
    • More examples from the series:
      • The Sacred Stones giving Pegasus Knights the option to promote to Wyvern Knights may seem like a bit of Fridge Logic, but that was how the promotion path went for them in the first game. It wasn't until the 4th that Pegasus and Wyvern riders were made separate class groups.
      • The Sacred Stones' "unique" features (frequently met with They Changed It, Now It Sucks): Monster enemies, a traversable world map, replayable battles and branching promotions? All of them debuted in Fire Emblem Gaiden, 6 games earlier.
  • World in Conflict was widely praised for it's brand new original resource and recruitment system, even though the creators had previously used the exact same system for Ground Control 2.
    • Or the free style camera control, which dated back to the original Ground Control.
  • Newer gamers, or at least outsiders to the PC gaming market, seem to believe Dragon Age was BioWare's first foray into the fantasy RPG subgenre, unaware they did it a decade earlier with the Baldur's Gate saga, the Trope Codifier for all of their subsequent games, Dragon Age included, not to mention that it was infact the game's spiritual successor.
  • Most people think Fallout: New Vegas was Obsidian Entertainment's first foray into the franchise, even though the previous game was Bethesda's first game in the series, and that Obsidian was partly made up of key team members from the original developers of the Fallout series, Black Isle, and that New Vegas took place in one of the areas of what would have been the third game in the series before Black Isle closed and Bethesda bought the franchise: Fallout Van Buren.
  • There are people who think that Sonic Adventure renamed Robotnik to Eggman, making the former name the "original" one and the later a relatively recent change, which couldn't be further from truth. Not only was he always known as Eggman in Japan, but this name came before Robotnik. While Sonic 1 was released in America before in Japan, the game and its characters were created and developed entirely in Japan, with the villain being known as "Dr. Eggman" during the development. It wasn't until the game was finished that Sega of America decided to make changes to its plot, one of which involved changing the antagonist's name and personality. Sonic Adventure merely marked the point the games started using the original name overseas, like Yoshi's Safari did with "Peach".
    • Also, many gamers believe Amy debuted in Sonic Adventure or later, while her real first appearance was in Sonic the Hedgehog CD, and before that, an obscure manga.
      • One cause of this confusion might have been that Sega of America decided to call her "Princess Sally" (the name of a totally different and unrelated character who was created for one of the cartoons and doesn't even exist in the games' continuity) in the American manual of her debut game as a marketing tactic to promote the American Sonic cartoons and comics of the time.
  • A lot of people seem to think Metal Gear Online is exclusive to Metal Gear Solid 4 Guns of the Patriots. Metal Gear Solid 3 Snake Eater: Subsistence had it first, though it was shut down after barely a full year. The main-series PSP installments have multiplayer components, as well.
  • The Game of Thrones RPG is being seen as a quick cash grab adaptation of the HBO TV series - which in turn, an adaptation of George R. R. Martin's fantasy books. Contrary to popular belief, The game has in fact been in development since 2005 (much earlier than the show). Assuming the show was never produced, the game would be considered more of a RPG adaptation of a fantasy book series, like The Witcher.
  • Many people think Golden Eye 1997 is the game that popularized console FPS's (as well as the first "good" console FPS). In truth, there were several successful console FPS's before it, such as Turok: Dinosaur Hunter (released on the N64 less than six months before Goldeneye!), which also garnered a lot of critical acclaim and strong sales upon release.
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