Ok, so here I am shamelessly copying Stoo and looking back at some of my favourite game intros. I might just put a break in for those of you on the front page though, so all these embedded videos don’t slow down the site… *picks up hammer and chisel*


There we go. Right. Well, the first thing to say is that this list is dominated by a lot of the earliest games that I chose to cover for FFG. Whatever I might think of those early reviews, I have a strong nostalgic attachment to the games themselves: they were, after all, the ones that first motivated me to write.

 Blade Runner, 1997

Some of the character animation is a bit ropey now, but this still hold up well. In 1997, it was pretty amazing, particularly the bits that directly recall the opening scenes of the film. Clovis is a great bad guy, and I like McCoy as the rookie Blade Runner. I’m still not sure about the cringey exchanges between him and Steele at the end though. A trailer for this came with the Command and Conquer: Red Alert discs, and, despite not having seen the film, I knew I wanted the game straight away. In fact, I’m almost tempted to give it another go now.

Command and Conquer: Red Alert, 1996

Speaking of Red Alert, I love the intro for this one, too. Despite a budget of about £10 the opening scenes do a serviceable job of setting up the main premise (“I vunder if eet vill be raining…”) before segueing into some classically memorable music to get you into the mood for the action itself. How exactly does Einstein kill Hitler with a handshake, though?


Wing Commander III: Heart of the Tiger, 1994

I’m going to cheat a bit here: this isn’t the (rather long) introduction movie for WCIII, but a promotional trailer. I remember the very first issue of PC Zone I bought came loaded with a bunch of videos and behind the scenes interviews for the game, including this trailer. My first thoughts were: I must buy this game! I guess it’s a bit dated now (the music is a bit cheesy in particular), but at the time, this was unlike anything I’d ever seen before. The trailer does a good job of mixing up some of the key scenes and different paths the game can take without giving too much away.


Full Throttle, 1995

Another cheat, and another trailer. Before I got the full game I played through the demo for Full Throttle obsessively. Once you finished it, you got this trailer, which just made you want to go out and get the full thing. The demo and trailer were so good that it ultimately seemed a little disappointing. No gravelly-voiced Ben here, it’s biker-rock all the way.


Wing Commander II: Vengeance of the Kilrathi, 1991

Ok, so the static characters, MIDI music and stilted acting on display in this intro obviously don’t compare well with WCII’s big-budget sequels, but you can certainly see the origins of the ‘interactive movie’ approach here. I still really love the story in WCII, and if I wasn’t so bad at the main game I’d play it through again. This is my own video because most of the others on YouTube seem to cut off before you see what happens to your character, the disgraced hero. Something I’d never noticed before: the guy had to spend ten years behind a desk before he was allowed to fly again?


TIE Fighter, 1994

I think on balance I probably prefer the X-Wing intro, but I’ve mentioned that before, and TIE Fighter is the better game, so I’ll go with this. Lots of the DOS Star Wars intro sequences were great, once you got over the initial disappointment of the MIDI rendition of the main theme – I was also umming and ahhing about Dark Forces, which is another good one (and miles better than the embarassing FMV of Jedi Knight).

Brilliant as the game was, it could never live up to the experience promised here. It does earn extra points though for making use of Grand Admiral Thrawn, one of the better characters from the expanded universe (soon to be obliterated by the new films, no doubt).


Interstate ’76, 1997

I don’t think Interstate ’76 was ever a great game, but it had some really cool bits, particularly this TV-style intro sequence, which has always stuck in the memory.


Pro Evolution Soccer 4, 2004

Believe it or not, there have been some decent football game intros over the years, from the catchy music of Dino Dini’s Goal!, through the memorable self-indulgence of Sensible Software’s music videos for “Goalscoring Superstar Hero” (SWOS) and “Football Is Our Love” (Sensible Soccer ’98), to the predictable slickness of EA’s FIFA releases. My favourites, though, have to be from Pro Evolution Soccer: although they were never that visually impressive or particularly glossy, they did manage to capture the excitement and the essence of the real sport in a way that made you excited to play the game itself – which, fortunately, did the same. Even at the height of my Pro Evo rivalry with PG, we would actually watch these intros as part of the pre-match ritual. It all went downhill with PES 5, though, when they decided to license some music by Kasabian (an idea since repeated by roughly 10 million other companies and ad agencies) for the intro.


Day of the Tentacle, 1993

And a funny one to finish. This isn’t the full intro, it just stops at the killer line, which I prefer. All together now: “I feel like I could…like I could…TAKE ON THE WORLD!”