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Has a game ever truly switched genres?

Captain Toad

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Yes, Yakuza from action, beat em up to BS, cellphone-level turn-based combat:

Yup. It got better because of it too.
 

theHFIC

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Zelda pretty successfully went from an open world action adventure to a weapon-durability management sim.
 

RAIDEN1

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Yeah Yakuza, from being a 3D final fight to then recently becoming a turn based action RPG that's some switch-over
 

ZywyPL

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Fallout series - from genuinely one of the greatest RPGs of all times into FPP open-world walking sim with one of the clunkiest combat ever made.
 
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Ludist210

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NES Battletoads. The first three levels were brawler, vertical scrolling SHMUP (or sorts), and racing (of sorts). Not to mention there are several levels with 2D platforming sections. It did a lot, and it did most of it good (not great).
 

Spukc

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Came to post this. God I loved the story and was willing to put up with the boring turn-based combat but I hit a wall and couldn't be bothered to spend hours grinding.

Hope the next one's a beat em up.
my man

Great Gatsby Movie GIF by Sony
 

22:22

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Nov 19, 2020
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Was just thinking the same thing. The halfway point of this game is so damn cool. Really special game imo

Hmm I only know of the switching from 8 to 16 bit style graphics. What else happens?
 

Saber

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Resident Evil easly comes to mind.

Survival horror - corny action game
 

Moonjt9

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Hmm I only know of the switching from 8 to 16 bit style graphics. What else happens?

The gameplay evolves too. It goes from a standard side scroller to a metroidvania. I thought it was very well done too.
 
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22:22

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The gameplay evolves too. It goes from a standard side scroller to a metroidvania. I thought it was very well done too.

Sounds right up my alley. Thanks for your response.
 

nemiroff

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I remember when Half-Life changed genre in real time and became a platformer at the end of the game. *shudders*
 

ShadowNate

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The Nomad Soul has some experimental gameplay that may fit here.
It switches from 3rd person adventure game with some mortal kombat style fighting segments to FPS shoot'em up in certain sections (some optional, some not). And then there's the whole soul switching mechanic thing that may not come to play until you are quite far into the game (but unfortunately it is enforced to the player at some point, and then at other specific points too).

I could also add here Hollow Knight which, for its "true ending" turns into an unforgivebly lengthy torture of precision platforming, which is miles different from the most challenging platforming the game had to display up to that point and which its engine does not really support, lol. Yeah, fuck that white palace shit.
 
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Sean Mirrsen

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The first Space Rangers was quite weird. You had a great turn-based space living-world space combat and trading sim to look forward to, then you go to jump between systems and drop straight into an arcade shmup arena. And then you accept a government quest and suddenly you're in a CYOA-style text-adventure doing anything from solving puzzles to making pizza and managing ski resorts.

And then Space Rangers 2 one-upped it with actual RTS segments where you have to build robots out of components and capture buildings around the map like in the classic RTS Nether Earth. And the text-quests got even more elaborate to the point of having a simplified version of the actual space-combat-and-trading game as one of the quests.
 

22:22

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I see people claiming Assassin's Creed LOL wut? Oh yeah the games everyone jokes about are cookie cutter open world?

One of the few actual answers here.

I have to admit I didn't know what to do with that town building or whatever it was back when I was.. 7? Side scrolling part was hard AF aswell in my memory.

Good times 😎
 

GymWolf

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Jun 11, 2019
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Yes, Yakuza from action, beat em up to BS, cellphone-level turn-based combat:

Lol...

The action part in the old ones was more cellphone level than the new rpg combat system now.

Unless the cellphone level thing was just your way to shit on turn based combats in general...
 
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93xfan

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Was just thinking the same thing. The halfway point of this game is so damn cool. Really special game imo
I agree. And I love the humor in it! Between that game, Hollow Knight, and Ori, we really had a great gen for the genre
 
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Lol...

The action part in the old ones was more cellphone level than the new rpg combat system now.

Unless the cellphone level thing was just your way to shit on turn based combats in general...
Yakuza is amazing, it's the best.

whether it's tedious mashy action grinding combat, or tedius turn-based grinding combat, it's the same difference either way.

By the way, there's no sarcasm here. Yakuza really is the best, despite the tiresome combat in all Yakuza games - everything else about the series elevates it.
 
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Wonko_C

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The Guardian Legend constantly keeps switching between overhead Zelda-style exploration and vertical shmup "dungeons". I've always wanted a sequel, or more games in that style.

 
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GymWolf

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Yakuza is amazing, it's the best.

whether it's tedious mashy action grinding combat, or tedius turn-based grinding combat, it's the same difference either way.

By the way, there's no sarcasm here. Yakuza really is the best, despite the tiresome combat in all Yakuza games - everything else about the series elevates it.
The only flaws of the new rpg combat is having zero challenge, but as a combat system per se, is much better than the previous 3d brawlers iterations.
 

MiguelItUp

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Right off the top of my head I think of the Resident Evil series because of the step away from slower-paced survival horror, to more faster-paced action. BACK to a slower-paced survival horror style.

Then there's Yakuza that went from the standard Yakuza expectation to an RPG with the latest iteration.

Metal Gear Solid V as well, which was a pretty bold step away from expected MGS gameplay.

The Zelda series has also seen quite a bit of shifting with Zelda 2 and BotW.
 

darkleemar

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jak II was a pretty massive change compared to jak and daxter. Went from open world platformer to third person action adventure shooter.
 
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PooBone

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Nier Automata does a lot of switching from 3d action to top down shooter.
Brutal Legend goes from action-adventure game to RTS, in a pretty staggering way.
 

sackings

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if were talking in one game only, ActRaiser and Nier I guess. For a series I'd say FF Tactics was one of the first to completely change up the gameplay. Super Mario RPG is arguable, but that was made by Square, not Nintendo.
 

Drac84

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Dynasty Warriors (fighting game) to Dynasty Warriors 2 (musso)
Starfox (flight arcade) to Starfox Adventures (3D adventure game)
Sim City (city builder) to the Sims (tamagochi)
Warcraft 3 (RTS) to World of Warcraft (MMO)
Metroid (platformer) to metroid prime (FPS)
 

FMX

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I think that the OP means changing genres during the course of the game not in the series. Someone gave the example of Actraiser which went from action for strategy game. Great game.
 

TexMex

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Was just thinking the same thing. The halfway point of this game is so damn cool. Really special game imo

Few Messenger call outs but that game doesn’t change genres, just visual presentation.
 

kuncol02

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I know there have been games that have pretty big surprises in them, but has game ever truly switched genres?
Not just playstyles or different minigames, more the entire thing. Something that would get people talking.

For example, imagine playing Truck Simulator but after an hour or so, your truck breaks down and you have to walk to the nearest town. You shortcut through some woods and find yourself at an old mansion, where the game turns into Resident Evil.

I'm almost positive nothing that extreme has been done, but what's the closest it's come?

--

Edit (repeated later down as well).

Just to clarify I'm not exactly talking about different styles of gameplay. GTA does that. But a completely different feel and expectation. Breaking the forth wall.
Imagine thinking you're getting one type of game only for it to become another -- or a game that when you start is just a button mashing hack and slash but by the end it's managed to teach you chess.

Platinum games switch genres all the time, in quite extreme ways, but you always know that is going to happen going in. It's expected because of the presentation and style of the game.
Having said that I may need to look into Neir again as I gave up halfway through.
Kojima's games are pretty extreme. Also No More Hero's with it's ultra fun waggle combat vs the stilted tank controls of the 'main game'. I always found that funny and daring.

The question might be unanswerable as there are so many different opinions as to what makes a game, gameplay or experience etc. But I'm wondering what the hardest 'genre switch' is.
I'm not talking about this happening as a series evolves, but in a single game. Something that has the potential to anger as many people as it delights.
Brütal Legend starts as typical third person action adventure and turns into strategy.