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A form of Call Back in which a level or area in a video game is designed in such a way as to evoke memories of a previous game in the series. There are various ways in which this can be done: the level may simply use graphics or music from the original, or it may have the characters return to a location visited earlier in the series. In extreme cases an entire level may be reproduced exactly using updated graphics.

Also, if a game has a Level Editor, even if it has no official Nostalgia Level, you can expect fans to make plenty of remakes of iconic levels from older games in its series, and even some complete Video Game Remakes. It's a common idea when originality is a bit low.

Compare Video Game Remake, which is basically a Nostalgia Game, the Remember Me Level flavor of All the Worlds Are a Stage, where a level or section from a previous game is included among a newer game's final area's "past challenges", and Embedded Precursor where an earlier game is included in its entirety. Often brings a series' protagonist back Where It All Began.

Examples of Nostalgia Level include:


Nintendo Edit

  • Modern Super Mario Bros. games revel in this.
    • One of the e-Reader levels in Super Mario Advance 4: Super Mario Bros 3 is a remake of World 1-1 from Super Mario Bros. The Japanese version also released remakes of the rest of World 1 as well as 2-2.
    • All the Super Mario Kart tracks are unlockable in Mario Kart: Super Circuit (though they are arranged in five cups of four tracks each rather than four cups of five, to match the newer tracks- this also leads to ruining the pattern of the first three cups ending with a Bowser Castle track followed by a Mario Circuit track). Mario Kart DS, Wii, and 7 also include returning tracks from previous games.
    • Mario & Luigi: Superstar Saga included at least a couple of top-down 2-D sections riffing on the original game's side-on 2-D levels.
      • It also had a quirky remake of the original Mario Bros, as does almost every other Mario game on the Game Boy Advance.
    • Super Paper Mario had 1-1, 1-2, 6-2, and the famous 6-2 Coin Heaven mixed in there somewhere.
    • Furthermore, the whole idea for Super Paper Mario came from the between-chapter minigame in Paper Mario the Thousand Year Door where you played a typical Super Mario Bros game, except as Bowser, where you collect pieces of meat to get bigger.
    • Super Mario Galaxy 2 has even more references, including Throwback Galaxy, a remake of Whomp's Fortress from Super Mario 64. It also has more old music but fully orchestrated. It's even called "Nostalgic Fortress Galaxy" in the Japanese and Spanish versions.
      • Several bosses from the first Galaxy make a reappearance. (One boss (Bugaboom) appears in a secret mission, while 5 other bosses (Dino Piranha, King Kaliente, Major Burrows, Bouldergeist, and Fiery Dino Piranha) are in the Boss Rush level.)
      • Luigi's Purple Coins ("Luigi's Purple Coin Chaos" in Mario Squared Galaxy) and the Cyclone Stone (Stone Cyclone Galaxy) both return from the first game. They're both harder. The latter is a lot harder.
      • The Rolling Coaster Galaxy is reminiscent of both Rainbow Ride and Rainbow Road.
      • Tall Trunk Galaxy has a slide like those in Super Mario 64, complete with the appropriate music. Again, it's much harder than the original.
      • Starshine Beach Galaxy is a nod to Super Mario Sunshine.
      • World S also has another nod to Super Mario Sunshine. The Twisty Trials Galaxy is a remake of one of the FLUDD-less "secret" levels, specifically mission 4 of Ricco Harbor. Yet again, it's much harder than the original. Galaxy 2's physics engine is much less generous regarding how slanted the surface of the rotating blocks has to get before you fall off. And if the level still isn't difficult enough for you, the prankster comet makes the blocks rotate twice as fast, and places the power star above a rotating block rather than a stationary platform.
      • Supermassive Galaxy is a nice throwback to a level in Super Mario Bros 3 where everything was huge.
    • Even one older Mario game had this: In Super Mario Bros 3, Mario and Luigi could fight for items in an area based on the original Mario Bros arcade game.
    • Yoshis Island DS is chock-full of these, from one-upping The Very Loooooooong Cave with The Cave That Never Ends to having twin Berts instead of one as the first boss, and even an imitation of Bowser's giant transformation through magic.
      • Not to mention that the game begins with direct remakes of the tutorial level and first level of the original game.
    • New Super Mario Bros Wii takes the first part of 1-1 for its 1-1 and aspects of the Airship from Super Mario Bros 3 for Bowser Jr's Airship.
      • One of the levels in Coin Battle mode IS the original 1-1... With absolutely wonky physics. Prepare for the blocks to spin around on you, and to fall through several platforms on the grounds of them being fake.
    • Super Mario RPG has a room in Booster's Tower where you can turn into the original, 2D version of Mario temporarily. For some reason.
      • Not to mention all the games from the Paper Mario series have a similar section.
    • The DS remake of Super Mario 64 has a small tropical island world that uses the music from Super Mario Sunshine's Delfino Plaza.
  • The second-to-last level of Kirby's Adventure for NES has black-and-white graphics (Kirby is the ONLY THING still colored) and looks like the original Kirby's Dream Land for Game Boy. This is unusual among Nostalgia Levels in that Kirby's Dream Land was only released one year earlier. When Kirby's Adventure was remade as the Game Boy Advance game Nightmare In Dream Land, that level was included intact, where it made somewhat more sense, since the GBA was not only the Game Boy's successor but was backwards-compatible with its games.
  • Super Metroid has the old Mother Brain room and the first few rooms of Brinstar (one of which was the escape shaft) from the original Metroid.
    • The Aurora Units from Metroid Prime 3 were clearly meant to remind players of Mother Brain from the 2D games, in terms of both looks and the music played when they appear. One trailer explaining the history of the Auroras even used the Mother Brain room from the first game as a background image. The similarity is such that it was surprising that the game never explicitly stated a connection between the two.
    • By the same token, many areas of Metroid Zero Mission (which also classifies as a Nostalgia Game) are throwbacks to Super Metroid, since a few of them didn't exist in the original Metroid.
  • The Legend of Zelda: The first dungeon's map in Oracle of Seasons was shaped exactly like Level 1 from the first game, and the entrance sat in an old tree in the center of an island connected by a bridge to the right, just like in the original game. And the treasure room was shaped exactly like those in Zelda 1. Oh, and seven of the eight dungeon bosses in that game were remakes of Zelda 1 bosses. As you may have figured out by this point, the game was originally planned as a remake of the first game.
    • The entrance of the Temple of Time in Twilight Princess was very familiar to anyone who played Ocarina of Time.
      • This stands to reason, since Word of God states that Twilight Princess is a direct successor (several generations later) to Ocarina.
      • In fact, you are apparently going into the Temple of Time as it existed while the other Link was out fighting Ganondorf. When you go into the Master Sword chamber, it is replicated exactly, the pedestal has no duplicate sword.
      • Arguably the Sacred Grove area in Twilight Princess was a one of these due to the resemblence it had to The Lost Woods of Ocarina of Time level wise and song wise.
      • Not to mention the Sacred Grove looking much like it would in A Link To The Past.
      • Also, the Hyrule Castle sections of both Twilight Princess and Wind Waker have remixed versions of the Castle theme from A Link to the Past. The former even has a bunch of puzzles that involve using your lantern to light things, the lantern being the quest item in ALttP.
  • The final area in Mother 3 contains a movie theater playing clips from Earthbound, its predecessor. The whole final stage is largely intended to be a nostalgia trip, with one of the very last areas the player goes through containing a museum filled with items and characters (or replicas of them) from Earthbound, with the sprites being directly ripped from the previous game. Between the proportions and the palette differences between the SNES and GBA sprites, a lot of the sprites were particularly jarring (most notably a certain someone's spider mech being sized to match Earthbound's battle sprites rather than the overworld's). The music in the looooong alley preceding that particular room is the same as the title screen of the first opus, the very first tune you'll hear in the entire series!
    • Heck, the whole final chapter counts, what with there being a theatre screening a movie made of the major events of the second game. A snack bar has robot female servants modeled after a certain Dung Beetle-hating rich cold-hearted woman, complete with the same quotes! The villain room in the Thunder Tower has the Teddy Bear, and various other easter eggs. You can even engage in an optional Bonus Boss battle for an equippable "Friend's Yo-Yo"!
    • The Saturn valley!
    • The nostalgia factor actually has relevance to the story, symbolizing the villain's own nostalgia for and the folly of living in one's past.
  • Super Smash Bros. levels are often reworks of levels of the original games the fighters came from. In Super Smash Bros. Brawl, there are near-perfect copies of the original Mario Bros. arcade game, and one of the Donkey Kong stages, amongst others.
    • Let's be honest here. Smash Bros. is a Nostalgia Series.
    • Melee and Brawl also has stages taken directly from the respective previous Smash game.
  • After becoming the Champion in Pokémon Gold, Silver, and Crystal, you are given a boat ticket to Kanto, the entire setting of the first generation. You can then collect the original games' badges there, though the Gym Leaders are much tougher and several things have changed in three years. After getting these badges it is even possible to fight against the protagonist of the first game.
    • HeartGold and SoulSilver take this even further, not only containing all of the Johto and Kanto areas from Gold and Silver but also restoring Viridian Forest, Seafoam Islands, and Cerulean Cave (which weren't available in Gold and Silver), complete with Articuno and Mewtwo still in the latter two; further, a fight has been added against the Big Bad of Red and Blue. Oh, and they brought back the Battle Frontier.

  "Your Pokémon seems to be smelling a nostalgically familiar scent..."

    • The fifth generation Pokemon were designed specifically by Game Freak to remind longtime players of old pokemon. Watchog is Raticate, Unfezant is Pidgeot, Garbodor is Muk, Bouffalant is Tauros, Vanilluxe is Weezing, Liepard is Persian, Stoutland is Arcanine, Woobat is Zubat, and so on.
  • Donkey Kong for the Game Boy starts off with the same four levels from the original arcade version of Donkey Kong (made significantly easier because Mario has many more tricks and can fall from greater heights safely). Later, he has to contend with running through several of the levels that he forced Donkey Kong, Jr. to deal with in the latter's game while trying to dodge Junior's interference - fittingly, the last stage with Junior is the last stage of Junior's game (with the difference being that Mario is locking Junior up instead of Junior rescuing his father from Mario).


Other Games Edit

  • Getting all 180 emblems in Sonic Adventure 2 unlocks a 3D version of Green Hill Zone from Sonic the Hedgehog.
    • Sonic Advance 3. Sunset Hill Zone. The level isn't a copy of a previous one, but the music is.
      • Sonic Advance also features a Nostalgia mini-Boss Rush in the final level, as Eggman's first two forms mirror those that he used in the first boss areas of Sonic 1 (ship with wrecking ball) and Sonic 2 (car with drill bit), complete with the boss music from their respective games.
    • The last hidden island in Sonic Rush Adventure is a replica of the first level from Sonic Rush.
    • Then there's Sonic Chronicles, which not only re-used old levels, but hides an old Egg-Robo enemy and a Mega-Drive (Genesis in the US) in one of the level art, recycles old music in some of the stages, puts old sound effects to use (albeit in inappropriate places), and brings back enemies from the non-game canon. Chronicles doesn't contain so much as a nostalgia level, as it is chock full of nostalgic moments for the fans of all Sonic canons.
    • Mario And Sonic At The Olympic Games's Dream Alpine level uses the first stage, and one of the more difficult enemies, from Sonic Heroes, right down to the music.
      • Dream Bobsleigh, despite being named after an area of Sonic Chronicles, is the bonus stage from Sonic Heroes.
      • Many of the dream events in the game are like this. Dream Snowboard Cross is Radical Highway from Sonic Adventure 2. Dream Ski Cross is a Mario Kart pastiche, right down to the opening fanfare and countdown.
    • Sonic the Hedgehog 4 takes the first part of Green Hill Zone for Splash Hill Zone.
    • Game Land Act 1 from Sonic Colors has a layout similar to that of Sonic 1's Green Hill Zone.
    • Sonic Generations is basically a whole game of Nostalgia Levels.
  • In Apollo Justice: Ace Attorney, the flashback to Phoenix Wright's last case uses graphics and music from the first game. It's a little jarring when Klavier makes his appearance, because of the graphical leap between the original Ace Attorney and this game. This is followed by an investigation sequence using Phoenix's gimmick from the second and third games, Psyche-Locks, as well as a new twist on that old classic: Black Psyche-Locks..
  • The final area in Mega Man X 5 is intended to evoke all of Mega Man history, leading up to the climactic end of the series...shame they messed it up by releasing three more games.
    • They also messed it up by trying to evoke nostalgia for Quick Man's level. And at the end of that section, you fight That One Boss from Mega Man 1.
    • And one of the most iconic fortress bosses from the X series returns in the second final stage: the wall-mounted face machine, Rangda Bangda, complete with a remix of the Vile/Fortress Boss theme from X.
    • Part of Mega Man ZX's Area D is a remake of the highway stage from the first X game. Several of the stages in ZX Advent are based on ZX stages, notably Queenbee's stage, which has the same overall structure and appearance as the final stage in its predecessor.
    • The Undernet 2 area of Mega Man Battle Network 4 looks almost exactly the same as the Undernet 2 area of Battle Network 2. The most noticable difference is that the portal to the (relatively speaking) friendly Undersquare is now a giant black hole of doom leading to a (completely unrelated) Bonus Dungeon swarming with even more evil.
  • The Classic tribe from Lemmings 2: The Tribes has a tileset themed around the Roman pillar stages from the first game, has the same set of skills as the first game in each level, and even has Lemmings explode in the same manner as the first game (while they ordinarily just explode as soon as their countdown timer reaches 0, here they hold their head, shake violently, and explode).
  • Before the action begins in Myst III, you can snoop around Atrus' office and find the original book of Riven, which belonged to the Big Bad of the second game: you can open it, and you can even touch the linking window, though nothing happens.
    • In Myst IV, you can cause an optional flashback to an FMV from Myst III.
    • Uru: Path of the Shell features the Myst library and K'veer. And in Myst V, the player can visit a dilapidated version of Myst island in the bad endings. Myst V also returns you to the Great Shaft seen in Uru: To D'ni previously. And Uru also includes several locations mentioned in the books, such as the Cleft.
  • The Rogue level in Nethack.
  • Turok 3 had a level set in a ruined version of the first level of the original game.
  • The last level of Halo 3 is set on a rebuilt version of Installation 04 from Halo: Combat Evolved.
  • A flashback level in Tomb Raider: Legend has young Lara wearing her outfit from the original game.
  • Ultima Underworld 2 had a level done in white line drawn graphics meant to mimic the style of Akalabeth, the precursor to the Ultima series.
  • After you defeat the Many in System Shock 2, you end up in a rebuilt Medical level of Citadel Station, the first stage of System Shock. Well, except for the random geometric shapes floating around.
  • It's only an Easter Egg, but Prince of Persia: Sands of Time, as well as including the original POP game, also has the first level of it rebuilt in 3D.
  • Metal Gear Solid 2 Sons of Liberty features the Torture Room from the previous game within Arsenal Gear. There was a very good reason why, as most of the events in the game were orchestrated to remind Raiden (and the player) of the first game.
    • This was spoofed in Merry Gear Solid 2: Ghosts of Christmas Past, when after being captured, Snake wakes up naked in 14015 Hideo Drive, the setting of the original Merry Gear Solid, and has to retrace the steps of Santa with epic Christmas music playing.
    • Metal Gear Solid 4 Guns of the Patriots also goes so far as to recreate most of the entire setting of the first Metal Gear Solid with a major next-gen overhaul for Act 4. Complete with audio and visual flashbacks and numerous winks to the first game's fandom ("A surveillance camera!?"). Unusual in that the purpose is not so much evoking fond nostalgia as stabbing you in the heart.
      • The nostalgia gets even thicker fighting Crying Wolf in the same area as Sniper Wolf, and a melee battle on top of REX.
    • Metal Gear: Ghost Babel averts this for most part, despite being set in a rebuilt version of Outer Heaven called Galuade. There's a part of the game which plays this straight though: the wreckage of the TX-55 Metal Gear from the first game can be found when the player reaches the 100th basement level of the final building in a room similar to that from the game.
  • One of the later levels of Drakengard 2 is one of the first levels of Drakengard, but in reverse. Instead of entering the castle and ascending it, you start from the top and work your way down.
    • Which is exactly what you do in the Free Exploration version of that mission in the first one.
  • There was a bit in Half-Life 2 designed to remind you of the intro to the first game, except that the one in the second game was in the Combine lair rather than Black Mesa.
    • Yet players see that room in the first Half-Life that the resonance cascade happened in.
    • The tech-demo, non-canon "Lost Coast" level on Steam is said in the commentary to be a gameplay callback to the cliffside fight with the marines from Half-Life 1 in the Surface Tension chapter (in that much of the combat involves you looking almost vertically at enemies)
    • Speaking of the cliff in HL1, some of its level architecture was ripped fresh into Nova Prospekt. When you get past the beach bunkers and start climbing the cliff, note the similarity of the pair of pipelines coming down. The only difference is that you approached it from the side and passed above it in the first game instead of climbing along it from the bottom up. Even the stinger that lurked just inside the exit tunnel was brought back (as a fast zombie instead of an ordinary headcrab, though).
  • Doom 2 had two secret levels set in Castle Wolfenstein, where the player had to kill Nazis. The second of these required the player to kill four Commander Keens to finish the game.
    • More specifically, the warp took you to E1M1 of Wolfenstein. Anyone with a memory knows that buried towards the end of that level is the secret exit to Wolfenstein's E1M10, the episode's secret level. Taking this secret exit takes you to Wolfenstein's E1M9, the Boss Level - with a Cyberdemon replacing Hans Grosse. That level auto-ended when you ran across a certain spot in the last room in the original; that room is now where you find the Commander Keens.
    • The second-to-last level of Doom 3: Resurrection of Evil was a remake of the second area of Doom 3, except that the whole area was ruined and constantly shaken by dimensional shockwaves.
    • The Classic mod for Doom 3 reproduces all of the levels from the first episode of Doom 1 using the Doom 3 engine, weapons, and monsters.
    • The music in Doom 1s E2M2 is a remix of Wolfenstein 3D's E2M10 music. Additionally, one of the Episode 1 maps was supposed to have some machinery in the shape of a swastika (only obvious when looking at it in the automap), though they were forced to change it before release.
    • Rather than a reference to a different game, the secret level of Doom 1's Episode 3 is a carbon-copy of the episode's first level, though with a few nasty surprises once the player reaches the original exit.
  • The first level of Marathon Infinity was designed to remind players of the dark, convoluted first level of the first game. The game also featured a trip into Durandal's core recycled from Marathon 2.
    • Not to mention the Vidmaster Challenge levels, which consisted of the hardest level from each game made even harder by noted modder Frigidman.
    • "G3 Sunbathing at 300 MHZ" from the Game Mod Marathon RED, an homage to the infamous "G4 Sunbathing" from the first game. It's worse this time, as there are no oxygen supply stations.
    • Earlier that in Marathon 2: Durandal, there is a point in which you are sent to Durandal's ship, the one he hijacked from the Pfhor in the first game. The textures in this level are new, but the geometry is a copy of the part of the ship that the player first visits in the original.
    • The Marathon Infinity Game Mod Return to Marathon involves revisiting the now abandoned colony ship, and the levels are mainly remixed areas from the first game.
  • Featured multiple times in the Suikoden series:
    • Suikoden II had you visiting the city of Gregminster and the battle music in that area even uses the one from Suikoden I. Have an Old Save Bonus with 108 Stars, and you even get a dinner scene that mirrors the one near the start of the first game.
    • In Suikoden IV, the mushrooms and mint that can be grown in your ship can engage in a strategy battle of the type found only in the original Suikoden.
  • Unreal Tournament 2004 has a few levels which are upgraded versions of levels on the original Unreal Tournament. The level Deck-17 goes even further - not only is it a remake of the overly popular Deck16 from UT, but at one place there's an entrance, closed off, through which the original level Deck-16 from five years ago can be seen, in darkness. A sign next to it says something like "DECK 16 CLOSED FOR REFURBISHMENT".
    • There are levels carried over from the original to 2004 (Facing Worlds/Face Classic), levels carried over from UT2004 to Unreal Tournament III (Torlan Delta, retooled from Onslaught to a Warfare map), and even some from the original, resurrected in UTIII after being passed over for 2003/04 (Coret Facility and Hydro). And that's not counting the hordes of fan-made remake maps for the latter games, including (for some reason) Deck-16 for 2004 (Then again, '04 had no built-in jump boots.).
  • We Love Katamari had the Cowbear level, which references the Tauros and Ursa Major levels of the original game. However, for most players the sigh of nostalgia was replaced by either a shriek of terror at recalling having to roll up the biggest cow or bear in a level full of them, or a sigh of relief that this version of the stage was relatively easier.
  • The first Xenosaga game had an 'escape' sequence where you are chased by automated attack drones through a sewer, duplicating a scene from the Spiritual Predecessor Xenogears.
  • The entry hall part of the first level in the original Castlevania has made numerous re-appearances throughout the series. And the ascent to Dracula's throne room is practically the same in almost every Castlevania game since the beginning. The ascent even makes up the Castlevania section of I Wanna Be the Guy, albeit with less safe place to stand, and more enemies.
    • Every level of the original Castlevania, as well as several from Castlevania III, appear in most of the subsequent 2D versions of the game - however, as many people never got far in the game, they're not as immediately recognized.
    • Castlevania Dawn of Sorrow's Julius Mode is an example of this. The entire mode is supposed to be an homage to Castlevania III Draculas Curse. Julius takes the place of Trevor, Yoko takes the place of Sypha, and Alucard... replaces himself. There was evidence found in the game's files that Hammer, the shopkeeper, was meant to be a playable character as well, meaning that he would probably take the place of Grant Da Nasty. Adding in a Crowning Music of Awesome, The song "Beginning" from the first level of Castlevania III plays in the Lost Village (the first area of the game) and the song "Bloody Tears" from Castlevania II: Simon's Quest plays in The Dark Chapel.
    • Harmony of Despair with Chapter 10: Origins. It's a remake of the entirety of the first Castlevania 1986, and it has the retro enemies and bosses, and even all the breakable walls and other secrets from the original. Beating it once also unlocks all the original 8-bit tracks, making it even better.
    • Symphony's Clock Tower and Castle Keep are very similar to their counterparts from Rondo of Blood, with a few new areas.
  • Pinball example: The classic The Twilight Zone pinball machine had a quick multiball mode which featured, as it was counting down the available timer, clips from the designer's (Pat Lawlor's) prior games: The Addams Family, Funhouse Whirlwind!, Earthshaker!, and Banzai Run.
    • Another machine, Junkyard, had a bonus mode that randomly started a mode from an earlier pinball machine, including but not limited to The Addams Family, Creature from the Black Lagoon, and Attack From Mars.
    • Also, the playfield layout for Steve Ritchie's 1995 game, No Fear: Dangerous Sports, is described as a hybrid of High Speed (and its sequel The Getaway: High Speed II), Black Knight 2000, and Terminator 2: Judgment Day, with a ruleset based on Star Trek: The Next Generation.
    • The third game in the Pin Bot series, Jack Bot, is a reworked version of the first game, using the same playfield layout but with a casino theme, revised rules and updated electronics.
  • The main hall and first few rooms of Resident Evil are recreated, in real-time 3D, no less, in Resident Evil: Code Veronica. This is, of course, before the Gamecube remake came along and blew them both out of the water with its gothic overkill.
    • Resident Evil Zero in turn features a Reverse Nostalgia Level (making it a Foreshadowing Level) by having Rebecca stop by the main hall of the Umbrella Underground Facility from Resident Evil 2 at one point.
      • Not to mention Resident Evil 3, which has Jill visit the police station from Resident Evil 2.
        • The Outbreak crew visits the police station again in File #2, and Birkin's lab in the original, including previously inaccessable areas.
      • And the Resident Evil 5 Expansion Pack Lost in Nightmares is a flashback with Chris and Jill searching through Spencer's presumably new mansion. Chris even remarks "Takes you back, doesn't it?"
        • Hell, you can actually turn on the fixed camera angles in those areas to REALLY throw you back.
  • Mega Man 7 features a level taking place in a museum featuring statues (actually the actual deactivated bodies) of past Robot Masters. Dr. Wily steals one of them, Guts Man, who Mega Man later fights after Dr. Wily has finished modifying him into a hulking super-robot. This short level also has a medley of various old MM songs as its BGM.
    • Mega Man and Bass (originally Rockman and Forte) begins with another museum level, this time having the player play through rooms based upon levels from previous games (i.e. Metal Man's, Toad Man's). On top of this, the level's boss is Green Devil, the second of the recurring Gel Devil bosses that appear throughout the series. Green originally appeared in Mega Man 8, but he was a nostalgia boss of the Yellow Devil from the original and Mega Man 3. Mega Man X 5 did this with the Black Devil boss, and Mega Man Zero had the Rainbow Devil.
    • Mega Man 9 is designed with an overall Retraux aesthetic. Some of the random sections in the Endless Stage DLC are copied and pasted directly from the first two games.
    • Mega Man 10 features a more obscure Nostalgia Level; Special Stage 1 is based off of the first fortress stage of the first Game Boy installment of the series (with some alterations), up to and including the boss fight with Enker. And in the main game, the Weapons Archive is a Nostalgia Boss, imitating one boss from each of the first nine numbered Mega Man games.
  • The Flash adventure game series Prawn to be Wild, made as a prequel to the events of the popular Flash animated series On The Moon, ends with the events of the first episode of On The Moon... which the player must replicate exactly. The player must complete a multiple-choice quiz in order to make the main character say exactly what he originally said.
  • Crash Twinsanity opens with a jungle level, which very much evokes the mood of the (usually early-found) jungle levels of the first two games in the franchise.
  • The second game of Thief takes the player back to both the Lost City and the Maw levels of the first game... but now with 100% less lava!
  • Diablo II had one quest which ended with a return to the town of Tristram, where the first game took place. Except that, typically for the series, everyone had been turned into zombies. The developers even took the time to position corpses where each of the NPCs from the first game were standing.
  • Banjo-Kazooie: Nuts & Bolts has Banjo Land, which is set in an enormous museum filled with remnants from nearly every level from the previous games. The background music of Banjo Land is also a medley of various level tunes from the previous games.
    • 2 of Banjo-Tooie's first person levels are taken from Golden Eye 1997 (by the same company).
  • Final Fantasy IX has several, calling back to dungeons of the oldschool games of the franchise:
    • The Ice Cavern early in the game was originally in Final Fantasy I, as was Mount Gulug, which shares music and revamped bosses from the first game's Gurgu Volcano.
    • Pandemonium Castle, Garland's fortress, was the capital city of Hell in Final Fantasy II. The BGM is, again, a rearrangement of the original Pandemonium theme.
  • One of the custom maps in Warlords III: Reign of Heroes is the exact same map that the original Warlords played on.
  • There are plenty of areas in World of Warcraft which allow you to visit areas from previous Warcraft games. You can even still see the blood stains on the floor from events at the end of the Alliance campaign of Warcraft 3.
    • Also, the Caverns of Time are seemingly designed for this, with one of the instances in the Caverns placing the player in the midst of the Battle of Mount Hyjal, which was the final level of Warcraft 3.
  • The first level in Crisis Core is entirely made of various screens from the first Mako Reactor attack at the beginning of Final Fantasy VII.
  • The Time Crash segment of Chrono Cross ends in a temporally-displaced version of Leene's Square from Chrono Trigger.
    • You also have the option of using Kid's memories to travel back in time to her orphanage, which is Lucca's old house.
  • The third bonus level (the appropriately tittled "Reminiscence" ) of the Shoot Em Ups Star Soldier: Vanishing Earth takes place in a 3D remake of the first level of the original game. Two of the bosses of Star Soldier are also fought, with one quipping "This is the first game in a long time."
  • Almost every Gradius game has a volcano stage and a Moai stage. Worth mentioning is Stage 7 of Gradius Gaiden, which starts off as an innocent-looking volcano stage...that gets sucked into a black hole as you progress.
    • The volcano stage in IV turns into a Lethal Lava Land halfway through.
    • The second stage of Gaiden is a junkyard full of wrecks of Core bosses from previous Gradius games, some even partially functioning and trying to avenge themselves.
    • The Boss Rushes generally contain upgraded versions of bosses from previous games.
  • Magic: The Gathering has Time Spiral as its Nostalgia Block. Time Spiral and Planar Chaos are chock-full of nostalgia, and Future Sight has... future nostalgia.
    • Also, Scars of Mirrodin is a block where they revisit the first world that they visited when they started visiting new worlds each block. It doesn't end well for Mirrodin, though, as the world becomes the new homeworld for one of the game's once-thought-to-be-dead Big Bads.
  • Dreamcast game Ecco the Dolphin: Defender of the Future includes two hidden levels that play like the 2D Genesis games from earlier in the series; one of them is actually called Passage from Genesis. Slightly more subtle are the Hanging Waters levels, which harken back to the water tubes from the second Genesis game.
  • The final dungeon of StarTropics 2 is the same as the first dungeon from the original game, only with updated graphics and an extra boss fight at the end.
  • The Flashback Map Pack for Gears of War 2, which consists of ports of five multiplayer maps from the first game.
  • The Quantum of Solace game includes the Facility multiplayer map from the N64 Golden Eye 1997.
    • Perfect Dark Zero has DLC of a few Golden Eye 1997 and Perfect Dark maps, including Facility.
    • For its part, Perfect Dark had a couple of Golden Eye 1997's multiplayer maps, including - you guessed it - Facility.
      • Although in Perfect Dark, the name of the map is changed to Felicity... clever.
  • Rainbow Islands: The Story of Bubble Bobble 2 had a couple of Shout-Out levels based on other Taito games, but the last of the three secret islands that truly close the story is a true nostalgia level, where Bub (and Bob) have to yet again fight against their old enemies on Bubble Island, a huge throwback to Bubble Bobble. Unfortunately, they're already red and their attacks have been expanded. This time.
  • Likewise, Parasol Stars: The Story of Bubble Bobble III had the eighth planet being based on Rainbow Islands, complete with a rematch of that game's True Final Boss (that is, the one from Bubble Island, not Dragon Island). And that's the last stage unless you did certain actions during a certain point in the game, at which case the game continues with two extra levels, both being nostalgia levels: the first of these is based on Bubble Bobble itself, with the boss being Super Drunk, the last boss of that game. The world after that, the true final world, is based on Bubble Bobble's spiritual precursor, Chack'n Pop. It's filled with nothing but Stoners, Belugas, Hullaballoons, (If you ain't fond of Woolseyisms: Mightas, Monstas, and Pulpuls respectively) and evil Chack'ns. You even rescue Chack'n himself in the end!
  • Bubble Bobble and Bubble Symphony reference the first level in Chack'n Pop. Symphony goes further by having Nostalgia Levels based on other games in its TV Machine world, including the aforementioned Chack'n Pop level.
  • On a further note, the first boss of Bubble Symphony (no matter which of the first 3 doors are chosen) is a severely nerfed Super Drunk who is mainly easier, though reverts to his old Bubble Bobble pattern when he Turns Red. Even the level is a direct copy of Bubble Bobble's level 100. The True Final Boss lets an even more pathetic puppet version of Super Drunk fight you before revealing himself to be Hyper Drunk.
  • The DS remake of Diddy Kong Racing included a new secret world evocative of Donkey Kong Country, which the original lacked--two of the levels play variations on the classic DKC theme. Also, while it cut the Silver Coin Challenge mode from the main game, it included it as an unlockable extra.
    • Speaking of Diddy Kong Racing, Jet Force Gemini included one of its tracks for its own racing minigame.
  • Any Bomberman game that features a battle mode will almost always feature a stage that visually resembles the identical stages from the very first Bomberman game.
    • The Japanese-only Super Bomberman 5 takes this to ridiculous extremes: There are five zones in the game, and the first four are each dedicated to the preceeding four games in the series, complete with the same graphics and enemies.
  • Satori Komeiji in the eleventh Touhou game, Subterranean Animism, is a Nostalgia Boss as all of her spell cards except for the first are directly lifted from your current partner's previous appearance as a boss in preceding games.
    • Stage 4 in Imperishable Night, the eighth game, is sort of a throwback to Lotus Land Story, the fourth game. The enemy patterns present are similar to those in LLS, and the boss is Reimu or Marisa (depending on who you're playing as), just like in LLS. The package is completed with nostalgic music for either boss.
    • Undefined Fantastic Object has a Nostalgia Attack, the aptly named "Great Magic: Devil's Recitation" If only Shinki was the one using it...
    • The Extra Stage of Ten Desires calls back to the previous EX-bosses in the series. The boss attacks with red humans (Flandre) green foxes (Ran), red birds (Mokou), teal frogs (Suwako) blue humans (Koishi) and the Extra Midboss is Nue, who even preserves an attack from the EX stage of Touhou 12.
  • Generations Arena is a class-based Quake III Arena Nostalgia Mod featuring five classes that aim to replicate the weapons. physics and mechanics of Wolfenstein 3D, Doom and the first three Quake games (well, actually, the Quake III class IS "vanilla" Q3 left unchanged (duh) except for the BFG and the Wolfenstein class is best described as a loose adaptation for obvious reasons.). Of course, it also includes some Nostalgia Levels to go with the premise.
    • Speaking of Quake series, just when you thought the multiplayer of Quake IV couldn't get even more familiar (sans the addition of the nailgun), this installment actually has a couple of levels remade straight from Quake III Arena. Including the fan-favourite The Longest Yard.
  • The R-Type series absolutely loves this. For instance, there is always a stage that revolves around slowly destroying a massive enemy warship, in homage to the third stage of the original, and occasionally sections of levels will be modeled after particularly memorable past areas. Not to mention Dobkeratops, Stage 1 boss of the original, who has appeared in some form or another in every single game save Leo (Gomander, the Stage 2 boss, makes frequent appearances as well). But the best example is likely Stage 5 of Delta, which is made up entirely of enemies and ruined architecture from the original game, ending with a Boss Rush against the Ring of Turrets, Gomander and its Outslays, and the giant warship from Stage 3 split in half.
  • Blood II's expansion, The Nightmare Levels, features levels that are essentially the characters' personal hells. The first level is an amalgamation of three or so levels from the original game's second episode, complete with the original Cultist enemies and their peculiar speech.
  • La-Mulana has a hidden area based on the first level of Maze of Galious, the MSX game it was inspired by.
  • Stage 8-10 of Giana Sisters DS is a remake of the entire original Great Giana Sisters. Of course, to unlock it, you'll have to beat the game without getting a game over.
  • A side-quest in Kingdom of Loathing is written and played in old Interactive Fiction style, as many of its fans (not to mention creators) were playing back in those days.
  • The Contra series had plenty of these.
    • The final stage in Contra III: The Alien Wars had you facing against bosses from the first two games (both arcade and NES versions) in alien womb similar to the original game.
    • The fifth stage in Contra: Shattered Soldier is set in the jungles of Galuga Island, the setting of the original Contra and has the first stage theme from the original game as a background music.
      • The first half of Stage 2 is a throwback to the first part of Stage 4 from Contra III, and the second half is based on a level from Hard Corps.
    • Many of the levels from Contra 4 were shout backs to the early games (including Operation C).
    • Contra Rebirth is a Nostalgia Game, with the entire soundtrack being comprised of remixes from previous games. Area 2 and Area 5 in particular bear strong similarities to Contra III: The Alien Wars, which make certain bosses a homage to a homage.
  • Rolling Thunder 3 for the Genesis featured a cobweb-filled version of the Warehouse from the first game as a hidden level.
  • Double Dragon Advance features the Chinatown and Truck stages from Super Double Dragon, as well as a new stage based on the Cavern stage from the first NES game, and a temple resembling the Mansion of Terror from the second NES game.
  • Katamari Forever includes a host of levels from past games in the series, played out in the King Of All Cosmos' mind as he suffers from amnesia.
  • The Advance Wars series recycled most of the maps from the earlier Famicom Wars games in the War Room modes for each game. At the very least, you can always expect to find some version of Bean Island in each game, which was the very first map in the original Famicom Wars.
  • Level 11 of A Boy and His Blob for Wii is a remake of the beginning of the NES game, complete with orchestrated music.
  • Steele Stadium is an arena in Backyard Baseball 2005, looking exactly like it did in the original.
  • Monkey Island did this at least twice, although these are easter eggs and don't actually allow much gameplay. In the second game, during the last sequence in the underground tunnels, if you go up the lift you can exit to a back alley on Melee Island (from the first game). In the third game, you can stick your head in a wall at the crypt on Blood Island and it'll "pop out of the ground" in the middle of the forest on Melee Island (complete with the original MIDI music that accompanies that scene in the first game).
    • There's also the LeChuck doll in the third game. What makes it a borderline example is that the doll uses the same sprites as LeChuck himself in Monkey Island 2, causing it to stand out against the more cartoony graphics of The Curse Of Monkey Island.
    • Well, it's probable that Escape from Monkey Island intended the Melee Island and Monkey Island sequences to be nostalgia levels. The Scumm Bar, the giant clock in town, Carla and Otis and Meathook, then Herman Toothrot, the banana picker, and the giant monkey head. Too bad it was done poorly.
    • The Curse of Monkey Island features The Flying Welshman who looks almost identical to Bobbin Threadbare from the game Loom. The only difference is he's wearing a lifejacket and has a different voice (Loom had a talkie version, rare at the time)). Loom is a game from around the time of The Secret Of Monkey Island which is even advertised within the game. As Loom had no sequels, Lucasarts clearly put this in for people wondering what Bobbin was up to.
      • In reference to the Loom advertisement in the first game, The Curse of Monkey Island advertises Grim Fandango in a similar way, with Guybrush encountering the advertiser in a restaurant. The only difference is that the character who does so is the lead character from that game, Manny Cavalera...who doesn't speak to Guybrush on account of being dead.
  • Rainbow Six 3: Athena Sword reprises "Steel Wind" from the first game and "Sargasso Fade" from Rogue Spear.
  • Space Quest 4 has a section where Roger Wilco travels back in time to Space Quest 1. The backgrounds are low-res, 16-colour graphics as in the original, while Roger and his time machine are in high-res 256-colour graphics. When Roger enters the bar, he is beaten up by some monochrome NPCs who are jealous of his VGA graphics.
  • Space Quest 6 Roger's quarters has a number of inventory items he collected in all of the previous games, some of which were ironically consumed during the course of the game, and leaves one to wonder how he reacquired the item.
  • In a flashback in Assassin's Creed 2, you get to play as Altair, the main character from the first game.
  • In one of the levels of Fire Emblem: Radiant Dawn, you replay a bridge level from Path of Radiance, to which Radiant Dawn is a direct sequel, but going in the opposite direction. The same thing happens between Sword of Flame and "Sword of Seal.
  • In Knights of the Old Republic II:The Sith Lords, the return to Dantooine and the Jedi Enclave may have been this.
  • The second mission of Max Payne 2 takes place at the Vodka club, the same place where the climax of the first chapter in the original Max Payne took place (only then it was called Ragnarock), after Vladimir Lem bought it out, renamed it and started renovating.
  • The second Shinobu level in No More Heroes: Desperate Struggle is the now-abanonded Backdrop Studios from the original game. The music is "Cashmere Cannonball" from the first game's soundtrack, as well. Appropriately, the boss is New Destroyman - Destroyman was the boss of Backdrop Studios the first time.
  • In Descent III, there's a level taking place on the Moon. The moon was the location of the first level in the first Descent. You can fly into the ruined remains of that first level, fight a single example of the very first enemy you encountered (albeit reduced to little more than a Kamikaze drone), and park your ship in the very spot your ship first appeared when you first played Descent as a kid.
    • Several levels in the Mercenaries Expansion Pack are remakes of levels from Descent II and its Vertigo expansion pack.
  • In Dreamfall, you revisit a 3D versions of Venice and Marcuria which have gone to seed since the first game.
  • The awesome Super Mario Bros 3 hack Mario Adventure has a world with giant versions of classic levels.
  • One remarkable example from the Super Mario World ROM hack Super Demo World is a level in modeled after parts of World 1 from Super Mario Bros 3, including the bizarre secret from 1-3.
  • And then there's Syobon Action, whose levels are patterned after the original Super Mario Bros. but with all sorts of nasty Platform Hell surprises added.
  • One mission later in Grand Theft Auto San Andreas is set in Liberty City, the setting of Grand Theft Auto III
    • Heck, Vice City had a recreation of a street from Grand Theft Auto III in an in game movie lot. Since Vice City is set in the 80s, I guess they were shooting a science fiction movie?
  • Valkyrie Profile 2 has plenty of these, although it's justified because it is a prologue instead of a sequel. Which makes this an Inverted Trope.
  • Level 5 of DoDonPachi: DaiOuJou looks like a Darker and Edgier version of level 1 from DoDonPachi and the bosses of levels 3, 4, and 5 appear as a Boss Rush.
    • In DoDonPachi: DaiFukkatsu, bosses from both DoDonPachi and DaiOuJou can appear as midbosses, depending on how well the player is doing. If they do, a slightly different version of the BGM that includes a lietmotif from a song from DaiOuJou is played instead of the regular version.
  • The Time Splitters games reused old arenas in the sequels, with the Chinese Restaurant being in all three.
  • Sector 8 of Jumper Two consists of a selection of levels from original Jumper. Namely: 6-1, 2-5, 4-4, 6-4 and 3-4.
  • The subway levels in Syphon Filter 3 and The Omega Strain are throwbacks to the first game. The former is in fact the same subway in DC as the one in the original.
  • Being based around Time Travel, the Legacy of Kain series has fun with this, often revisting locations from the first game Blood Omen, sometimes even at the same time.
    • In Soul Reaver, the second game which takes place in the far future, Nupraptor's keep is revisited, which has long since dropped from its cliff.
    • Also in Soul Reaver, the Chronoplast is directly under the Oracle's cave.
    • The Sarafan Stronghold visited in Soul Reaver 2 and Defiance is explicitly modeled on the building seen in Blood Omen's intro cinematic.
    • Defiance also revisits Kain's mausoleum, Vorador's mansion and Avernus Cathedral.
  • Ace Combat 5's arcade mode takes place over the same continent the previous game, 04, was set in. Most notably, the hardest version of stage 6 takes place over the island from the first mission in 04. In turn, Zero reuses a number of maps from 5 for missions taking place in Belka.
  • Pick any Star Wars flight simulator where you play as the Rebels. Odds are there will be a Death Star trench run or a level where you go inside a large ship and blow up a reactor.
    • There will also, almost invariably, be a Hoth level that involves bringing down AT-ATs with a Snowspeeder. It got to the point that, when World War II games like the older Medal of Honor and Call of Duty games got really widespread, some started to say that "Normandy is the new Hoth".
  • When The Sacrifice is downloaded for Left 4 Dead 2, you also get the ported Left 4 Dead campaign No Mercy.
  • Gothic II: Night of the Raven features a Nostalgia Quest to guide Diego to the entrance to Valley of Mines, which is the place where you met in the very beginning of Gothic. After getting there, you receive a chunk of XP referred in-game as "nostalgia bonus".
    • Valley of Mines itself mostly qualifies as Nostalgia Level.
  • The Tony Hawk series of skateboarding games revel in Nostalgia Levels. The PC version of the second game started the trend by including a few stages from the first game and then the Xbox Enhanced Remake went all out and included every stage from the first game (even letting you complete the original game's career mode). Since then every game up to Project 8 has included a number of throwback stages with the exception of THPS4 (which instead had a cameo level from another Activision extreme sports game).
    • Tony Hawk's Underground 2 starts you off in a Nostalgia Level (the first game's first level) but then allows you to break into a whole new area left of the original stage.
  • In Medal of Honor: Allied Assault's fourth mission, you visit the area that Patterson traversed in the original's first mission, rescuing the pilot of the deceased G3 officer, and Manon Batiste also has a cameo appearance. The next level is in the area where the Greta railroad cannon was destroyed.
  • Dead Space 2 does this near the end with the player revisiting the Ishimura, complete with revisiting the medical section of the ship making it the third time you've played through that area over the course of the main games.
  • A rare Gamebook example: the starting area of Return to Firetop Mountain's titular dungeon is exactly the same as it was in the first Fighting Fantasy book. Same layout, same corridors, same traps and most rooms are still there including the remains of the mobs that were in them the first time around and empty chests that have already been looted by the previous adventurer.
  • In Lufia 2 Rise Of The Sinistrals, the final stage is reminiscent of the opening of Lufia And The Fortress Of Doom complete with a remix of its impressively inspiring score.
    • This trope is somewhat lampshaded because not only is the final stage reminiscent of the first from the original, it IS the same accounted for by the fact it is a PREQUEL, in which the characters from the second game were included in the first at the very beginning as a Tarantino-esque pre-emptive recap of sorts. Whew.
  • Several Tales (series) games contain games that are very similar but not identical to early Namco releases. For example, Tales of Destiny contains a Bonus Dungeon based around The Tower of Druaga, and Tales of the Abyss has Dragon Buster instead starring the main game's protagonist.
  • Vindictus, the ultraviolent prequel to Mabinogi, features a Nostalgia Boss Battle in the 8th episode (currently available only in Korea) in the form of the episode's raid boss, who is none other than Glas Ghaibhleann, the final boss from Generation 1 of Mabinogi. And if you thought he was tough in that game, he is utterly hardcore here!
  • The first area of Wonder Boy in Monster World right after leaving your house is just like the beginning of Round 1 of Wonder Boy in Monster Land. Things change once you reach the castle.
  • The background of Bit.Trip FLUXs final level, Catharsis, is based heavily on the background of BEATs first level, Transition. There's a reason for this.
  • The first chapter of Portal 2 takes place in dilapidated versions of test chambers from the original Portal, specifically Test Chambers 00-05 (With 04 and 05 having been combined into one chamber, followed by two new chambers), 07, GLaDOS's chamber, and finally Test Chamber 19 (Starting backwards from the empty Fire Pit). Author commentary states that the objective was not only nostalgia, but also introducing the players to the updated graphics.
  • Ever since Trilogy and the fourth game, the Mortal Kombat series tends to bring back older stages from the original trilogy, complete with remixed music. Sometimes these stages include Call Backs to previous events, but they're usually there for nothing other than Rule of Cool. The usual offenders are The Living Forest and Goro's Lair.
    • This is actually Justified Trope in the case of Mortal Kombat 9, a Continuity Reboot spanning the events of the first three titles. As such, almost all of the stages reappear, and most of the ones that don't are merged with pre-existing arenas.
    • Past Mortal Kombat arenas also reemerge in Armageddon.
  • One level of Fatal Frame III is essentially the first game all over again, complete with (an older and wiser) Miku as the protagonist, near-identical settings, familiar objects and puzzles, and a Boss Battle starring the Rope Shrine Maiden.
    • A similar level contains areas from the second game, albeit with the former protagonist's uncle chasing after her rather than her chasing her twin sister. It also reintroduces the Kusabi for a few chase sequences and a Boss Battle.
  • Team Fortress 2: 2Fort and Well are call-backs to the maps of the same name in Team Fortress Classic.
  • Fable II has the return to the (now destroyed) Oakvale, as part of the Wraithmarsh. It was the birthplace of the original hero from Fable I.
  • Deus Ex: Invisible War has a level in the UNATCO building of the first game as well as some other locations. There is also a point in Deus Ex: Human Revolution where the Music for the Hong Kong level can be heard.
  • Hitman: Contracts has 47 reliving past missions as flashbacks during a near death experience. Many of these are recreations of missions from the first two games, and the first level is 47 escaping from the aftermath of the climax of the first game.
  • Sorcerian had one scenario which was effectively a shortened remake of Romancia: Dragon Slayer Jr.. Curiously, the localized version by Sierra changed the dialogue and music to make the reference to Romancia less obvious, though Romancia was never released outside Japan.
  • In Fire Hawk: Thexder The Second Contact, the opening of mission 2 looks a lot like the beginning of Thexder.
  • Fixation, being a prequel to The Company of Myself, naturally has one in "Chapter Five: The Meadow", which is visually designed after the setting of the original game. Then you get to the final level, and it is completely dark. You move to the right of the stage, and the darkness disappears, revealing that the level is actually Level 17 from the original game. The premise of the level is even the same -- you deactivate the barrier that blocks Jack (using a smoke ring instead of a lever, due to the game's mechanics), followed by Jack activating a switch that allows him to progress... but also drops you down a pit.

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