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The Top 7... Loading screens that don't suck quite as hard as loading screens normally do

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1) FIFA 11

EA kick-started (groan) the generation with the idea of the interactive footie arena at the very start of the game and preceding each match. It's a simple concept - just you, the ball, a goal and goalkeeper. It lets you dribble the ball around and pull off insane displays of ball control before hammering a shot home past the goalkeeper as many times as you like without ever actually playing any of the main game. With replays too!

 

Of course, as soon as the match begins, all these skill moves become completely forgotten because the game just doesn't seem to act the same when the match has started. But in terms of keeping us entertained while the game loads its polygons, there's always a slight sense of 'aww, do we have to?' when the 'PRESS START TO PLAY' message flashes up. Especially as the fully loaded stadium and crowd appear magically with barely a pause, making the damn thing look even better than it did already. Come on, just one more shot…

The intellectual analysis:
The football connoisseur will appreciate the level of detail in the trick animations, the tightness of the hit boxes, fluidity of the physics and more than likely comment on how this one-v-one multiplayer mode strips football down to its purest form, creating a microcosm of everything that's great about the world's favourite sport. 

The layman's analysis:
A park kickabout without the risk of dog poo.


Right. Now we've seen the word 'loading' so many times, it's lost all meaning, so we'll load it there and let you load. Loading!

Loaded on 20 Jun, 2011

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Top 7

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51 comments

  • Its_Over_9000! - August 23, 2011 6:09 p.m.

    I used to love the loading screen for Devil May Cry 3 (or dmc 1, don't remember) ... coz you can shoot/slice up the loading bar :-3 , great stress reliever considering that the game was hard as hell
  • IPostedThis4U - June 22, 2011 5:13 a.m.

    I loved the concept of Star Wars: Battlefront's loading screen, where it zoomed in to where the battlefield you were fighting.
  • philipshaw - June 21, 2011 2:43 p.m.

    Great top 7, I would have ridge racer at number 1
  • yonderTheGreat - June 21, 2011 10:18 a.m.

    Still don't understand all the whining about the Mass Effect elevators. Would you really prefer a "loading" screen instead of a "watch well-written, witty, and sometimes awesome banter between the characters, something BioWare is famous for"? Sure... the loading screens weren't quick... but changing it to "LOADING... LOADING..." wasn't exactly going to speed things up. Give me elevators any day (but make them load faster)!
  • Dondada - June 21, 2011 6:05 a.m.

    Bayonetta wins. I played Bayonetta on the PS3 after the update and loved every single second, loading and all.
  • FauxFurry - June 21, 2011 3:15 a.m.

    What about Castlevania:Symphony of the Night's loading screens? One could manipulate the games logo. One could even make it spin! It was impressive for it's time, I can assure you! That's nothing compared to Mass Effect's elevators, though. Those were on a whole other level. They not only let one witness characterization one would have otherwise missed out on in conversations sure to lift one's spirits as surely as one's character(s), the elevators gave one a chance to think over the latest bit of story information or to go over one's strategy. Why were there so many elevator haters, anyway? They need to get off their high horses, preferably by taking a nice,long ride down on one of Mass Effect's elevators so they can have time to think about how mistaken they've been all of this time.
  • V13Dragongal - June 21, 2011 2:28 a.m.

    I loved the loading screens in Okami. They were one of the most fun ways to get demon fangs
  • Robusken - June 21, 2011 1:38 a.m.

    This isnt a good example but its what come to mind first, the DBZ fighting games always had some weird mini gamewere you moved both analog sticks while loading.
  • Camoxide - June 20, 2011 11:43 p.m.

    Seriously? Non of the DBZ games?
  • EnragedTortoise1 - June 20, 2011 10:53 p.m.

    Didn't The Darkness have some pretty cool loads too?
  • EwoksTasteLikeChicken - June 20, 2011 9:52 p.m.

    I personally like all the Assassin's Creed loading screens, at least they're interactive. I also liked most of Bioware's loading screens, especially Mass Effect 2.
  • AngryScotsman - June 20, 2011 8:35 p.m.

    I liked Okami's loading screens as each one had one of two hidden rhythm minigames. Beat the minigames, get treasure! What a system. It also helps you get used to the loading. When you start doing well in them, it's gutting for it to finish loading.
  • Kisokuiki - June 20, 2011 8:21 p.m.

    3D Dot Game Heroes should have made the list instead of Plants vs. Zombies.
  • LTS - June 20, 2011 8:01 p.m.

    I can't remember the exact title, but some EA Sports college basketball game from a few years ago let you play a game of pick up hoops on a practice court while the game was loading.
  • AntistaLovebot0069 - June 20, 2011 7:59 p.m.

    What about Test Drive for the Xbox/Playstation 2. My cousin and I reted it and ended up playing the loading screen instead of the game because it was the original Pong.
  • asspills - June 20, 2011 7:50 p.m.

    The Darkness. Each one was a monologue from Jackie, furthering the story, explaining backstory, telling a random anecdote, or sometimes, just trying to spin his guns. Until you had seen each one a few too many times, each loading screen was exciting, and really just seemed like part of the game.
  • babyhenchy1 - June 20, 2011 6:32 p.m.

    You can pause the loading screens in Bayonetta by pushing select.
  • babyhenchy1 - June 20, 2011 6:32 p.m.

    You can pause the loading screens in Bayonetta by pushing select.
  • RicePuddingUK - June 20, 2011 5:52 p.m.

    I hate interactive loading screens, just means the actual game will take longer to load because at the same time its running code for the loading screen.
  • jackthemenace - June 20, 2011 5:48 p.m.

    The Bayonetta load screens were perfect. They gave you a chance between levels to work out how to pull off the tricky combos that you couldn't while you were having your face and/or boobs smashed in by angel-birds. But, let's face it, who WOULDN'T want to see Old Snake smoking for "up to four minutes" between EVERY SINGLE ACT of MGS4?

Showing 1-20 of 51 comments

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