The best video game openings perfectly introduce you to the world you’re about to explore, setting both the scene and the tone of the events that are about to transpire. There have been plenty that have stayed in the memory long after the end credits have rolled, though only a select few are worth of the title of the very best game opening ever.
The GameRevolution editorial team have shared their thoughts on the matter, and you can share your own opinions in the comments section below. As always, we’ll feature our favorite.
Paul Tamburro, executive editor: “There were games that I played before The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past, but it was the first to floor me with its sheer scale. I’d never played anything like it at the time, and first venturing out into the rainy Hyrule before rescuing Princess Zelda felt like the beginnings of a proper adventure. Nothing gets the blood pumping quite like that Hyrule Field score.”
Jason Faulkner, senior editor: “Final Fantasy 7 is probably the opening that had the most effect on me. It was the first PlayStation game I played, and as impressive as the N64 was, the FMV of Midgar blew my mind. It was the first time I really recognized that games could be on the same level as movies artistically.”
Mack Ashworth, lead editor: “The Last of Us took a tired zombie apocalypse formula and still managed to deliver a shocking start to a fantastic game. Witnessing the panic and desperation from an innocent child’s point of view was intense.”
Bradley Russell, sub-editor: “It’s not a game I’m actually all that enamored with, but I’d say Resident Evil 4. It’s a masterclass in escalation and environmental storytelling, with less is more (a mantra a few more recent games could learn from) being the key thread binding it together. All roads lead to that first open clearing. The bell. The shambling masses. The chainsaw. It’s all pitch perfect, while still giving you breathing room to learn what was, then, a completely new way of playing Resi. Absolutely unforgettable.”
Michael Leri, sub-editor: “I want to cheat and say the whole initial God of War trilogy but I think I’m going to have to pick the first God of War. While God of War 3’s intro is technically astounding and a hell of a ride, God of War’s beginning sets up the story and gives you a good sampler of the gameplay as well. It immediately grabs you with Kratos’ “suicide” and then throws you on a non-stop (but well paced) journey as you destroy the huge hydra. You learn who Kratos is, get intrigued by his journey, and learn the gameplay ropes through one of the most memorable boss fights of all time.”