Wednesday, January 11, 2017

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

A good title screen puts the player in the mood to enjoy the game. It's memorable, it's iconic, and just looking at it even without the actual game name on it can remind of you that game. With SuperPhillip Central's relatively new series on the best title screens in gaming, these titles bring out great memories of even greater games. To check out the first entries in this series, look no further than this link. After checking out SPC's picks, which title screens from gaming's past and present do you consider the best and most memorable?

Mass Effect 3 (Multi)

We begin our journey through great title screens with one from Mass Effect 3 that really sets the stage for the game. While the ending might have had much ire from fans, the title screen of the game is one that is hard to dislike. With pieces of debris and countless asteroids falling to the planet's surface, this Mass Effect 3 title screen is so easy to get lost in, gazing at each falling piece of debris as it smashes into the planet's surface.

Xenoblade Chronicles X (Wii U)

Xenoblade Chronicles X's title screen shares a common theme with Mass Effect 3's in that it's quite easy to get lost in. The world of the game is full of behemoth beasts both docile and threatening, and this title screen shows multiple flying beasts as our cast of heroes stands tall on a mountaintop gazing over them. The giant, hulking Skell standing next to them impresses as well, and the idea that players will be able to eventually hop inside one to take on these imposing beasts makes for one engaging title screen.

Kingdom Hearts (PS2)

Unlike Mass Effect 3 and Xenoblade Chronicles X's title screens, what Kingdom Hearts offers is a more relaxing and subdued title screen. Beautifully done artwork of series protagonist Sora rests on the right side of the screen as the logo takes up the majority of the screen's real estate. All of it is cast against a gentle white background, but the piece de resistance that blends it all together so splendidly is Yoko Shimomura's Dearly Beloved theme that plays over it. Soothing and pleasant to the eyes, this is the Kingdom Hearts title screen.

New Super Mario Bros. Wii (Wii)

Going from subdued to more energetic, New Super Mario Bros. Wii's title screen shows off our heroes of the game, Mario, Luigi, Yellow Toad, and Blue Toad sauntering through a idyllic landscape full of small mountains and gigantic polka-dotted hills. This is all the while this peppy and upbeat tune plays. The title screen shows the first taste of the New Super Mario Bros. series on a console as well as the main draw to the game other than the terrific level design, the crazy, zany, and ultimately fun local multiplayer for up to four friends to enjoy.

Sonic & Knuckles (GEN)

This title screen begins with Sonic falling downward with Dr. Robotnik's Death Egg smashing into a mountain in the background. As Sonic's feet meet the ground, planting firmly next to Knuckles' location, the Sonic & Knuckles logo pops up from the bottom of the screen. Now, both a 3D-looking model of Sonic as well as Knuckles perform their own modest idle animations as players choose between taking on the game as either the Blue Blur or the echidna that unlike Sonic, doesn't chuckle. It's an energetic and for its time, impressive title screen that really hits home that Sega Genesis owners were in for one exciting platforming adventure.

Streets of Rage (GEN)

Streets of Rage's classic title screen brings players with a nighttime view of a '90s era city, full of criminals and thugs to beat down and brawl. The three protagonists, Axel, Blaze, and Adam, all ex-cops, position themselves on the title screen, taking up top billing as the Streets of Rage logo manifests on the screen as well. Between the gorgeous city background, the impressive and large ixel and sprite models of our three heroes, and the Yuzo Koshiro soundtrack that backs it, this title screen for Streets of Rage is absolutely old school cool.

Super Metroid (SNES)

Going from old school cool to cool in general, Super Metroid's title screen is chilling in every sense of the word. Showing fallen bodies on both sides of the baby Metroid from Metroid II: Return of Samus that is held in captivity, the cold choices of color, the flashing of the computer monitors on both sides of the Metroid, and tense, mysterious music that plays while players look on all add up to one ambient title screen that is as memorable as it is alarming.

Mega Man 2 (NES)

Wrapping up this installment of the best title screens of gaming's long history, we go very retro with this one. After the opening scrolls up the side of a building, we see Mega Man without helmet standing at the top with his hair blowing wildly in the wind. The iconic Mega Man 2 logo presents itself, and players realize that they're in the cusp of greatness. Mega Man 2 is not only one of the greatest games on the classic NES, but it also possesses one of the most memorable title screens that the system has ever seen-- And as we've seen, one of the most memorable title screens in gaming history,

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