Spin-off games can be a really mixed bag. For every excellent Ace Attorney Investigations or Crisis Zone, there’s a rubbish Shadow The Hedgehog or Death By Degrees waiting to sucker you out of cash. But some spin-offs are so good that they genuinely overshadow the games they were spun off from – here’s a look at six of them…
Given that it’s one of the most popular puzzle game variants, everyone must have played at least one Puyo Puyo game – match the colourful blobs and watch them disappear. Easy. But how many of you have played Madou Monogatari, the Japanese RPG from which the Puyos originate? Exactly.
It’s true – more people are buying Mario’s racing spin-off than his platformers at this point, and that’s been the case for over a decade. Mario Kart Double Dash was the first to surpass the platformers, selling 7 million compared to Super Mario Sunshine’s 6.3 million. Since then the only Mario Kart to be beaten in sales by a Mario platformer on the same system is Mario Kart DS.
Now, this one requires a bit of explaining. Back in 1997, Koei released a fighting game about historical figures from the Three Kingdoms era called Sangokumusō (or Dynasty Warriors, in English). Then in 2000, the company did a hack-and-slash spin-off called Shin Sangokumusō – but in English, it was called Dynasty Warriors 2. The hack-and-slash series has thrived, but Koei never went back to the fighting game well.