The Most Amazing Video Game Title Screens

The Most Amazing Video Game Title Screens

We did a gallery on the most awesome continue screens a few weeks ago, so it’s only fair that we give their complement — start menus and title screens — the same treatment.

Starting off at the top there is Xenoblade Chronicles, one of the best title screen experiences, especially when you’ve got the music on. But let’s continue in a chronological order and start with iconic title screens from the 8-bit and 16-bit era, finishing up the list with more recent games.

We handpicked these based on screens that had some amazing (or hypnotic, ahem Zombies Ate My Neighbours) animation, action or just set the right mood. Let’s dig in.

The Legend of Zelda (1986)

Kamen Rider Club (1988)

Dogfight Spirit (1988)

The Revenge of Shinobi (1989)

This image was lost some time after publication, but you can still view it here.

Super Mario Kart (1992)

This image was lost some time after publication, but you can still view it here.

Ultimate Air Combat (1992)

Secret of Mana (1993)

Zombies Ate My Neighbours (1993)

Super Metroid (1994)

The Incredible Hulk (1994)

Super Mario World 2: Yoshi’s Island (1995)

Chrono Trigger (1995)

Final Fantasy VII (1997)

Halo: Combat Evolved (2001)

Metroid Prime (2002)

Half-Life 2 (2004)

Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots (2008)

Brütal Legend (2009)

Wet (2009)

Vanquish (2010)

The Witcher 2: Assassins of Kings (2011)

There are other good ones out there! Storm the comments and post your picks!

sources: BrotherhoodOutcast, TheNightRune, Classic Video Game Title Screens, NeoGAF, Please Press Start, NES Title Screens, Tidal Tempest

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  • Half the images are broken.

    Do Kotaku US authors actually proof read their articles before they click that “submit” button?

    • I think you’ll find it’s the Australian site’s webcode. Ever since the redesign there’s still been the odd article here and there where the image layouts don’t translate across from the US site. I’m interested in how they do the translation from the US site because I’d have thought they’d just work from the same base data records and lay it out according to their own transformation templates. One day I’m going to find out the secrets that lay behind the Pink K.

  • I’m a big fan of the Borderlands 2 title screen, shows the games humour and artistic style at the same time, very agreeable.

  • I love a good ol’ loading and menu screen,
    the thing i love about HL2 was the fact that the background changed depending on how far you had progressed in the game so it wasnt the same old boring screen 24/7

    • Agreed.
      I also loved the Red Dead Redemption title screen. It was always a different location and you could hear all of the ambient noises: a river flowing, birds chirping, wind through the grass etc.

  • The Brutal Legend start screen, and opening, is one of the most unique I’ve ever seen, and I’d reccomend it to everyone.

    • I really did like that screen. Even after watching that intro so many times, I still couldn’t bring myself to skipping it.

      • I lent the game to a friend and even with the splash screens he wasn’t sure if I’d given him the right disc.
        This was partly due to the fact it was a grey import and had Chinese writing on it, muddying things a bit.

      • I don’t know why people didn’t like the game. I thought the whole RTS/Hack’n’Slash* thing actually played out pretty well.

        And come on, it’s Tim Schafer.


        • I think you meant RTS/Action. I actually did find that game fun. However, I did eventually find myself getting bored. It’s a very repetitive game.

          • Oh shit, yes, I was meant to say RTS/Hack’n’Slash. No idea why I said FPS (probably because it’s always RPG/FPS or MMO/FPS these days).

            This actually makes me feel conditioned and violated.

  • I enjoyed the Psychonauts title screen. It’s really unique, what with the walking on a giant brain.

  • I liked the one in the original Infamous. Just a plain old regular cityscape. Until you press the Start button mwahahahahah.

  • Some of these, such as Metroid Prime, were actually more amazing for what they did when you pressed a button.

  • I really like Persona 4 Golden’s start screen. Colourful with good music playing at the background.

  • I want to link the FFXI menu screen, but it’s always changing the background. You’ll get Gustaberg, Sanctuary of Zi’Tah, Al’Taieu (my favourite), Rivern Site A01/B01, Ru’Aun Garden, etc.

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