There’s dedication, and then there’s dedication. One of those people on the Internet — you know of whom I speak — recently uploaded a collection of every start screen sequencefrom the venerable SNES console, compiled into a video for your viewing pleasure. Titled SUPER PRESS START, the video clocks in at around nine hours and follows on from a previous video, PRESS START, which covers every NES title.
Start screens of that era retain a certain quality, one that tracks their arcade ancestry quite closely. Many implemented an intro reminiscent of an arcade machine’s attract mode, while arcade-perfect conversion was still a highly sought-after feature. I contacted creator NicksplosionFX via Facebook to find out more.
Firstly, why start screens? “I only focused on the start screens because they are so iconic,” says Nick. “The music, the graphics, the nostalgia… they have everything that people who grew up with the Nintendo and Super Nintendo love and miss in modern games.”
The germ of the project began when he was testing out a new emulator while looking for screen capture software for another unrelated task. “I thought, ‘why don’t I record my favourite sequences’, which turned into, ‘Why don’t I record ALL the opening NES screens?’.” He started with American titles only, but was moved by some of the Japanese start screens to include them as well.
So, how long does it take you to record every start screen? While he didn’t have a total time for SUPER PRESS START, the previous video took roughly three months, give or take. “I was working an hour or two a night, longer on weekends,” he tells me. Any scripting? “I’m not smart enough to set up a script for this. I basically played out every single start screen.”
As to whether we’ll see other start screen sequences, the answer is a definite maybe. “I’m not sure if you can expect to see any more of these types of videos, because they do take SO LONG… but, you never know. Maybe Game Boy, or SEGA – I guess the Virtual Boy would be pretty easy ;).”