I’m not the busiest man on the planet, but even so, I hate having my time wasted. So when I boot up a video game and have to sit through thirty seconds of pointless splash screens, I get pissed off.
Look, I don’t mind sitting through splash screens the first time I boot up a game. But after that, I already know who the studio and the publisher are. I don’t need to be reminded every time I want to play the game. Seriously, don’t insult my intelligence; my memory isn’t THAT bad. I also don’t need to see a splash screen with the title of the game. I know which icon I clicked; I’m not a fucking moron.
I wouldn’t be completely pissed, but it’s not just company logos that occupy a game’s introductory screens; there are also legal notices. And these aren’t the mandatory FBI anti-piracy warnings that you see at the start of a movie; these are there because the developers and/or publishers wanted to put them there. Do they honestly think that most players will read them? And even if I wanted to, they’re written in such fine print and flash by too quickly for me to read them. That legal bullshit can easily be relegated to a readme file; it doesn’t need to be padding the time before I can actually play my game.
But you know what really gets my goat? A lot of games have a splash screen for video card companies, usually for Nvidia, complete with its stupid “the way it’s meant to be played” slogan. What the hell does this accomplish? I don’t give a rat’s ass if Nvidia was a “partner” in the game’s development. Plus, I’m running an AMD card. It’s not as if advertising for Nvidia is going to inspire me to rip my video card out of its PCIe slot. My games run fine on my AMD card; I don’t care if they’re “meant to be played” on an Nvidia one.
The bottom line is this: I want to be able to start playing my game as soon after the time I click its icon as possible. There isn’t such a delay when I want to enjoy other forms of entertainment. When I click on the icons for VLC or iTunes, the programs just open. VideoLAN and Apple don’t see the need to flash their logos or dozens of legal notices; why do EA and Rockstar? Video games should have skippable introductory screens, which, to be fair, about half of them do. It’s the other half that are made by people who seem to think that my time isn’t valuable.