The intro video for any SC league is one of utmost importance. It sets the tone for the entire league. If your league has a shitty opening, chances are fans are going to be turned off until the Ro8/Ro4. This has certainly happened many times. And of course, us rabid fanboys are always eager to shed our worthless opinions about how awesome/shit an intro video is. At the end of the day, there are approximately 6 original intro videos per year for the OSL/MSL (less in the MSLs case actually) and about 1-2 for Proleague and 3 for GOM. Sometimes they produce special ones for finals - those have been excluded from this ranking.
The intro video has come a long way in 10 years. In the beginning, they all pretty much looked the same. Here is one such example.
Anyway, it took a while to break the mold - but it did eventually happen. To the best of my knowledge, the first intro video to break that mold made the top ten. It's fucking amazing with all due respect. We've come a long way since 2003 and well, the intro videos are looking better than ever. There are still a number of continual trends though, one in particular is the fact that year in year out the MSL simply has worse intro videos than the OSL.
I cannot stand the Avalon MSL intro video, which is basically a carbon copy of Lost Saga MSLs opening (which I also despised). On the topic of current intro videos, the OSL intro hype was certainly not justified. Sure its a new direction to take the OSL, but it was poorly executed and honestly, the progamers look stupid. There is that bizarre cut to Hwasin mostly naked for about 0.5 of a second as well - what the hell is up with that? Although I must say, it is certainly not the worst intro to come out of OGN (who do take home the prize of worst intro video ever - bottom three will be listed!!) so I suppose this intro is passable.
But enough of me rambling, let's see some of the best intro videos that the SC scene has had the honor of viewing.
SKY Proleague 2007 Round 1 (OnGameNet)
There was a string of good Proleague intros around this time. Some really interesting themes were used, and this one comes off as one of the better polished and better executed ones. The lightening theme is nice, and the soothing blue color works extremely well with the music choice. This is an example of how much better they are at making intros today (at least on the whole). Nada looks so sick in this as well. Excellent execution of a simple, but effective theme
Shinhan Bank OSL Season 3
This is a very very good intro - fully worthy of being the intro to the OSL that Savior won. This has excellent music choice and everything happens right on cue without any cutting of the original song. Thematically though, this is a rip of Shinhan Bank OSL Season 2 which comes as no surprise really. It didn't really push the boundary at all - it leeched off the previous seasons success. Standalone though, it is an excellent intro hence why it finds itself at #9.
GOMTV MSL Season 1
This intro perfectly captures the essence of the MSL. The gritty feel of this intro correlates perfectly with the overarching MSL theme which runs through the Offlines, Survivor and the MSL itself. The song is kind of annoying though, songs that abrasive in their opening don't tend to make good songs for intros. A more gritty/grainy song would have been a better choice. Nevertheless, the theme has been executed to perfection and the finished product looks amazing. An excellent effort by the MSL, but not quite their best!
Shinhan Bank OSL Season 2
Does this look familiar? It should, because this looks just like the intro for Season 3. This intro ranks higher for a number of reasons. Firstly, it broke the OSL mold - this was the intro that spawned a new dawn for OSL intro videos. Gone were the full on serious introductions that had dominated the OSL intro video space for the past 6 years and the new breed of fun loving, fangirl oriented, intros was born. The choice of music for this groundbreaking opening is excellent - it sets the mood for this OSL perfectly. Indeed, this OSL was groundbreaking on another level - Nada won the golden mouse during this OSL. An excellent intro video to match up with an excellent OSL.
Pringles MSL Season 2
In my opinion, this is the best intro video that the MSL has ever made. Honestly though, I find the use of greyscale in this to be quite peculiar, and I despised this opening when I first saw it. With that said, it has grown on me since then. It's a very peculiar theme, but its one that I have never forgotten - a must have factor for any great intro. The song choice, as with most MSLs, isn't the best - but it's probably the best matchup they have ever done. The one scene from this that stick with me the most is Savior's amber colored eyes just glaring at you - truly a sight to behold. Nevertheless, this was a groundbreaking MSL opening and sore to height that the MSL has not reached since. I really like this opening, and I hope it grows on you as much as it grew on me.
I tossed places 5 and 6 around so much it is no longer funny. In the end IOPS clinched it because its badass factor is through the roof. There are so many epic moments during this intro - like Reachs manly stare and the Lim-Jin death stare. The choice of song was perfect (despite the fact they cut it terribly) and although the theme was exactly the same as the seasons before it - this one had so much epic win in it that the boring theme is simply forgotten. This was easily the best intro from 2005 or before... Well that's what I thought before TL hosted the old vod night last year when I saw...
SKY Proleague 2004 Round 3
Since I first watched this on Old Vod night - I can't stop thinking about it. Indeed, this is (to the best of my knowledge) the first intro video to break the standard formula for an intro and wow, it does an amazing job. Not only does it breathe a huge fucking breath of fresh air into the progaming seen but its the first intro where XellOs footstomps the camera - this is now his trademark move. This is such an epic intro and it breaks my heart that I couldn't rank it higher (it certainly deserves it), but the top three are just too amazing.
The Worst of the Worst
Now that you are all eager anticipating what the top 3 are going to be, you can sit back and watch some of the worst openings known to man kind.
3. Sky Proleague 2005 Round 1 (OnGameNet)
In between two of the best intros there has ever been there lies this disgusting abomination. The song choice in this song is so so so wrong. Back in the day, I used to love this song, but it is just so terribly used in this song. Having viewed this intro many many times I am now completely sick of this intro and I hope that I never see it again. Oh, to top it all off, the vast majority of clips used in this are stolen from other intro videos. How amazingly bad is that? Bleh.
2. SKY Proleague 2005 Round 1 (MBCGame)
I didn't know how you could make an opening worse than the previous one, but wow, MBCGame managed to do it - DURING THE SAME SEASON. This is an excellent example of a failed concept. The theme itself is actually pretty good - the whole sketching thing. But honestly, the music to accompany this is absolutely terrible and completely out of place. In addition to that the intro gets boring, really fast. I cannot stand to watch this intro any more. Impressively though, MBCGame did not make the worst intro (and this is by far the lowest they've sunk on the intro scale). That prize goes to none other than...
1. EVER 2005 OSL
Need something new? Yes we fucking do. It's like some moron found the mirror tool on his video editor and went - WOW THIS WOULD MAKE AN AMAZING OSL INTRO. Unfortunately, this amazing plan did not work out and the final product is the Progaming intro equivalent of an aborted fetus. This intro makes me sick just watching it =[.
Bacchus OSL 2008
Believe it or not, but this intro was universally hated by the entire community. Over time it grew on us, but this intro is more than deserving of third place. This truly is a fan girl opening, and they went all out to appease them. Bisu looks sexy as hell. Jaedong looks like he's going to rip your fucking heart out. Savior looks like a fucking god - the intro has it all, even the legendary XellOs foot stomp (timed perfectly with the music mind you). This intro was another revolutionary opening and broke any remaining rules for creating intros. At the end of the day there is a very good reason why this intro was hated so much; but I can't talk about that just yet.
Shinhan Bank OSL Season 1
This was not an easy decision, I tossed number 1 and 2 around countless times try to get it right. This is easily one of the most brilliant OSL intros I've ever seen. Every little facet about this opening is perfect. Exilia make the intro about five times more epic with Lifegame and it's an incredible experience. I've seen this intro so many times and it still gives me the chills when I watch it. There is so much epic win about this intro, the badass factor is probably the largest of all intros. The only weakpoint is theme and originality, but with an intro this good, those two hardly matter. As a small aside, all three Shinhan Bank OSLs from 2006 made the top 10 - they must have done something right!
+ Show Spoiler [Bonus] +
This intro was so good they even did a parody of it when they visited the KOR team house and did a team vs Coach thing
EVER 2007 OSL
Amazing on every level. This intro matches the last on every point (except perhaps music) aside from theme. The theme chosen for this intro is the best that has ever been chosen. So good, that the TSL used a theme inspired by this very opening. Part of the reason why Bacchus was hated so much was because it came after this brilliant and inspired opening. Words cannot describe how great this opening is, and I'm sure you'll agree that it deserves the #1 spot.
So there you have it - Plexa's top ten intros from all of progaming. I hope this was enjoyable and I hope it brought back some warm fuzzy feelings of nostalgia for you .
Poll: What should have been #1?
(Vote): EVER 2007
(Vote): Shinhan Bank OSL Season 1
(Vote): Bacchus OSL
(Vote): SKY Proleauge 2004 Round 3
(Vote): Pringles MSL Season 2
(Vote): IOPS OSL
(Vote): Shinhan Bank OSL Season 2
(Vote): GOMTV MSL Season 1
(Vote): Shinhan Bank OSL Season 3
(Vote): SKY Proleague 2005 Round 2
(Vote): Other (please post in comments)