Thursday, September 17, 2015

Title Screens That Say A Thousand Words: Gaming's Best - Part One

The title screen-- it's been with us for countless decades now. Whenever there is a game, there is a screen that shows what the name of it is. For the first time on SuperPhillip Central, we'll be taking a look at some of the best title screens in gaming history. Since there are so many good ones to choose from, this is but part one of what I plan to be a long-running series. Whether they're animated, offer some interaction, or are just plain cool looking, these title screens are what SuperPhillip Central considers to be the absolute best of a big bunch.

Super Mario 64 (N64)

We start off with a title screen that is an attraction screen as well. Super Mario 64 revolutionized the industry with its masterful use of 3D gameplay that was never as well executed until the game came out. It also has plenty of Easter eggs in it to keep players coming back for more. I remember spending ages tooling around outside of Princess Peach's castle, but I also recall messing about a bunch on the title screen, amazed I could pull Mario's nose, ears, hat, mustache, and more in crazy ways and amalgamations. 

The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time (N64)

Listening to the soft and tranquil piano title theme play as coming and going hoof beats pass the player by, The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time is a wonderful ride through a peaceful Hyrule Field. Adult Link rides his friend Epona through the countryside, stopping at streams, riding across hills and scenes of green, and greeting the dawn with virtuoso horse riding skills.

The Last of Us (PS4, PS3)

A direct contrast to the ugliness that the game presents players, The Last of Us's title screen is a serene one with gorgeous sunbeams shining through a garden-side window. You'd think that this title screen was for a completely different game, and not one where bashing bricks through enemy skulls, being bitten and consumed by infected human beings, and seeing the true horrors that humankind can bring unto the world.

Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty (PS2)

A colorful title screen with Metal Gear Solid's main artist, Yoji Shinkawa, delivers the supreme style that Hideo Kojima's series is known for. The title screen is sleek, stylish, and yes, even a bit sexy, if a title screen could be such a thing. It gets you primed for the excellent tale and spy thriller that awaits you. The title screen offers two versions: one with Solid Snake, as pictured, and one in blue with Raiden.

Metroid Prime (GCN)

An awesome looking title screen from the gang at Retro Studios and Nintendo, Metroid Prime's title screen gives a look inside cells with a microbiological setting. All style AND substance, pressing start presents players with a deeper look at even more cells and science, really wowing viewers in the process.

Xenoblade Chronicles [3D] (Wii, New 3DS)

Whether you're playing the original Wii or the New Nintendo 3DS version, Xenoblade Chronicles's title screen is similar to The Last of Us's in that presents a very tranquil environment. However, Xenoblade's world isn't as hopeless or as macabre at Naughty Dog's entry. Regardless, this scene shows Shulk's foreseeing Monado blade resting inside a grassy field with the wind blowing ever so gently. It's a calming title screen made even more so by the excellent theme that plays during it.

Super Mario World 2: Yoshi's Island (SNES)

Yoshi's Island's title screen shows off a flyover of the eponymous island, revealing all of the lovely locations that the Yoshis and Baby Mario will traverse. From plains to towers, castles to caves, Yoshi's Island offers many locales to travel through while giving the player a fantastic Koji Kondo composed soundtrack in the process.

Pokemon Red and Blue (GB)

The final title screens of this first edition of the best title screens in gaming goes nostalgic with the very first duo of Pokemon games, Pokemon Red and Blue. You get the Pokemon Championship theme to roll around in your ears, as well as a look at trainer Red and a parade of Pokemon appearing one by one across the screen. It's the perfect way to get into the mood to go about catching 'em all!

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