For the most part, those swerves end up being games I really enjoy. Filling a Zelda game with sidequests for masks, a possessed kid and a countdown for a disturbing moon's gradual descent into a small town? Sounds kinda nuts, but The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask is my favorite Zelda because of its weird qualities. Its dark story and twisted take on many of Zelda's established assets struck me as a bizarrely refreshing spin on the series.
Yes, sometimes the oddball installments go wrong - I finished Metroid: Other M before harboring deep disappointment toward it - but I know there are plenty of odd sequels that actually turned out pretty well! I'd like to know which of those you've most enjoyed over the years, though if you really want to warn us against the worst examples you've stumbled into, I wouldn't hate you for it. Share your favorite left-field followups with us, right after you check out this week's Japanese hardware sales after the break!