How many times have you seen a loading screen in your lifetime? Whether it be the countless times you died in Rayman, Crash Bandicoot, Dark Souls, Call Of Duty and so many others, or you've simply walked outside in The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim, we've all seen our fair share of loading screens.
The majority of them simply feature a small little symbol rotating, fading in and out of view in the bottom righthand corner of a black screen. Maybe there's a logo in the middle, or some gameplay tips to help you not die again. But some video games dared to think bigger. These 10 are part of that elite group.
10 Examples Of Glorious Loading Screens
1. Resident Evil (1996)
Capcom used some beautifully disguised loading screens in the original Resident Evil. When you left one room and entered another, you were greeted by an eerie set of doors in the middle of an abyss. They all opened at their own pace in complete silence as the next area was loaded. But they created a wonderful sense of fear and anticipation. We had no idea what would greet us once these doors swung open. True horror.
2. Rayman Legends (2013)
Rayman Origins and Rayman Legends are two fantastic platformers in every sense of the word. But they've also got some of the most enjoyable loading screens. You can check out one example below which sees two players play a game in which they attempt to catch a little floating red bug. Can you beat your pal to it? It's an endearing loading screen and we thank Ubisoft for them.
3. Onechanbara: Bikini Samurai Squad (2009)
This is an absolutely horrendous video game. Seriously, it's woefully sexist of course, but the gameplay itself is beyond monotonous. What a terribly boring hack-and-slash "adventure". However, it does actually have a fantastic loading screen that features a funny little mini-game in which you mindlessly hack away at cute little zombies. I'll give you one point for this, the rest of the game stays at a firm zero.
4. Okami (2006)
On the PS2 version of this stunningly beautiful action-adventure title, players of Okami could actually gain an item for the main game during the loading screen. There are two versions.
The first has you pound away at the X button to make 50 paw prints appear on screen, rewarding you with a Demon Fang if you manage it before the next level loads. The second one requires timing as you need to press the X button in time to paw prints appearing along the bottom of the screen. Nice one, Clover Studio.
5. Devil May Cry 3 (2005)
Capcom return once more with a fun loading screen for a great game (anyone else a big fan of Devil May Cry?). This action-adventure title lets gamers shoot and slash at the "Now Loading" words in the bottom right-hand corner of the screen. It was a fun way to pass the time and prepare you for some more slashing and shooting in game!
6. Tekken 2 (1995)
This has to be one of the best loading screens of all time. Bandai Namco actually included a section of an old arcade game from 1991 in the middle of Tekken 2's down times. The initial loading screen features a short blast of 3D space-shooter StarBlade. And if you liked what you saw, you could even unlock the game within the "Arcade History" section of Tekken 5. Nice one, Bandai.
7. FIFA 15 (2014)
I do appreciate a loading screen that allows me to practice my skills, and the FIFA games have become one of the best examples of this modern gaming. This series has been using interactive loading screens for years, but putting you in a one-on-one situation of striker versus keeper is a great opportunity to practice your shooting, try out some dribbling, or just goof around. Look at Messi go!
8. Dirt 2 (2011)
Rather than staring at the random vehicles in this sequel, Codemasters decided to let players check out how they were progressing in Dirt 2. This loading screen provided you with your current stats: achievement progress, average race finish position, miles driven, etc. All of this presented in an attractive wrap-up screen that you could navigate with your controller. A pretty engaging and useful loading screen if you ask me.
9. Invade-A-Load (1987)
The Commodore 64 must have been an absolute blast. This particular game on the console, Invade-A-Load, allowed players to engage in a Space Invaders clone while you waited for the actual game to Load. It was a clever way to distract players from the apparently obscenely long loading times the game had. You crafty bastards.
10. Bayonetta (2010)
Bayonetta is a game that demands exemplary move execution if you really want to do well. Therefore, the game's loading screens decided to give you a place to practice all of your newly acquired combo moves. It's so beneficial for you but also a great way to kill time. Well done, Bayonetta. You get spot number one.
Special Mention: Assassin's Creed (2007)
I suppose I had to through in a little bit of [Assassin's Creed](tag:437814). Though I may not be a fan of where the franchise went or how prevalent it's become in modern gaming, I did really enjoy its loading screens as we ran around the Animus' own loading screens awaiting the arrival of the backdrop to the Third Crusade.