In the Beginning…
Picture this…the year is 1999, and you’ve just got home from school; life is good. You pop a game into your PS1 and hear that unmistakable load up sound. Then the Rage Against the Machine music kicks in, which can mean only one thing: Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater!!
Today, I’m going to be taking a look at the remake of the two classic Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater games. Now, many kids today probably won’t even know who Tony Hawk is. But for those pushing 30 (like myself) there wasn’t a child in school that wasn’t talking about this game.
My First Experience
The very first Tony Hawk game was released by Neversoft waayyyyy back in 1999 and has since spawned many sequels and variations of this skateboarding gem, from Pro Skater to Underground to American Wasteland.
I have been a huge fan of the series since release, and being able to review this game collection has brought back many amazing childhood memories. The second the intro to the game loaded up, the hair on my arms immediately stood up on end. The feeling of nostalgia, for me, is unreal.
But seeing how old those original 8 skaters have gotten has made me realise how old I am. And I’m not happy about that LOL! As well as the original skaters, such as Tony Hawk, Chad Muska, Rodney Mullen and more, there has also been some fresh meat added to the already awesome roster: Tyshawn Jones, Leo Baker and Ryley Hawk, just to name a few.
Would You Look at That…
The amount of detail that has gone into creating this remake really shows, from aging the legendary skaters to the revamping of the maps.
There are 3 game modes for you to choose from: Skate Tour, Multiplayer and Create a Park. The premise of Skate Tour is simple, you play over a series of levels with increasing difficulty, and each level has 10 objectives to perform within a two minute period.
Grab a Friend
Multiplayer allows you to play multiple game modes, such as combo challenge, free skate and time attack, both online and locally. And Create a Park is pretty self explanatory…you can create your very own skate park.
The game’s improved appearance isn’t the only thing that’s impressive, so many amazing songs I had completely forgotten about came rushing back into my memory. Now, remembering the lyrics to every song is good, but being able to remember where all the secret tapes are in each level is even better.
Each level of Skate Tour has a few of the same sorts of challenges: collect SKATE, find the secret tape, score X amount of points…you get the idea.
It’s Like I Never Left
Now, gameplay-wise, it feels like it may be a bit tricky for newcomers to the series to get the hang of these games. I don’t think I’ve played a Tony Hawk game since Proving Grounds was released, but for veterans such as myself, it’s like I’d never stopped playing. From the infamous Hangar level to Skate Heaven, mastering the controls was a walk in the park.
The fluidity of the gameplay is unreal, but it’s also astonishing to look at. Looking at how crisp and clean it looks now, it’s strange looking back and seeing how it looked back in the day, as well as feeling how janky the controls were.
BUILD ALL THE RAMPS!!
Create a Park mode is also nothing short of creative, with plenty of various ramps, rails and decor to choose from. You can literally spend ours (like I did) creating the park of your dreams: Heaven really is a half pipe.
All in all, from soundtrack to skate parks, Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 1+2 is the blast from the past that fans such as myself need, as well as welcoming newcomers for hours of rail to fail fun. So put on your pads and grab your decks, people, those secret tapes aren’t going to find themselves.
Developer: Vicarious Visions
Platforms: PS4, Xbox One, PC
Release Date: 4th September 2020
Gaming Respawn’s copy of Tony Hawks Pro Skater 1+2 was provided by the publisher.