Wednesday, October 20, 2021

Tony Hawk Pro Skater 1+2, Nostalgia on wheels

Tony Hawk Pro Skater 1+2 is a remake of the first 2 Pro Skater games that were on the original Playstation. The originals were developed by Neversoft and published by Activision. While the Publisher is the same, Neversoft had went defunct in 2014 so the game was developed by Vicarious Visions. That name should ring a bell because they also helped in the development of the second Pro Skater game.

Tony Hawk Pro Skater 1+2 launch trailer.

Pro Skater 1+2’s Maps

The maps are remade versions of the originals designed to be as close to the originals as possible. But this is a remake so the maps still offer something new. Such as better lighting, graphical updates, and making each level feel even more unique than before. This is shown in the warehouse level very easily, where in the original if it wasn’t for the tiny windows it could be any time of day. But now that they made these windows larger, the area feels for open and fun and more memorable.

The layouts are all the same so your combo lines remain untouched and fully functional. I enjoyed how downhill jam has drones flying past you when you get to certain areas. Or how the Mall map tells a mini story, where in the original it was on it’s last legs but in the remake its completely abandoned and the vegetation is starting to creep in. This to me was supposed to signify the two decades between the originals and Pro Skater 1+2.

Original Tony Hawk Pro Skater’s warehouse (left) compared to the remake’s warehouse (right).

Gameplay

One of my favorite things about Pro Skater 1+2 is that they refined but kept the same gameplay. The controls feel smooth and responsive but still maintaining the original’s charm. Like how when you hit the button to grind on a rail your character snaps to it and sticks to the weird shapes like glue. The combo mechanic is obviously present in the remake and they added more insane moves you can do.

Along with the new moves they brought back create-a-skater with a massively expanded creation tool. While the body type cant be customized anymore, there are tons of apparel to swap around, grip tape patters, etc. I had fun creating a character and taking them to try and get the highest combos I could manage. Park builder also returns for the remake, allowing you to create custom skate parks with parts you unlock in the base game and placing them for some insane ramps, combo lines, and whatever else you could dream of.

Along with those comes split screen for a nice heavy dose of nostalgia. Allowing two people to share a copy of Pro Skater 1+2 and skate together. But of course they didn’t stop there, they added in a whole multiplayer mode. Allowing you to compete in the global leaderboards and skate with others no matter the distance.

Skaters

They also added 8 new skaters to the game such as Leticia Bufoni, who is a five-time X games gold medalist. She was also planned to be appearing in the Olympics, with this being the first time skateboarding was a part of it. They also added Tyshawn Jones, the 2018 Thrasher Skater of the Year. He also Co-founded Hardies Hardware/Apparel where they sell bolts for boards, they have a unique deck shaped in their logo, and clothing like tees and hoodies.

Another skater that I was particularly excited for to be added to Pro Skater 1+2 was Riley Hawk. Some just call him Tony Hawk’s son but he is more than just the son, he is his own figure. Where Tony is known for his Vert style, halfpipes, ramps, and other aerial maneuvers, Riley is known for Street skating. Parking lots, sidewalks, and other flat areas that tend to have rails or stairs. This makes Riley especially stand out from his dad and he deserves all of that credit. He has also sustained some injuries that would end many others careers but he recovered to continue. Some so bad even his father said would’ve made him toss in the towel.

Finishing thoughts

But lets forget about my appreciation for these skaters and talk about what I think of Pro Skater 1+2. As you could probably tell, I love this game. And not only due to the nostalgia I have for the originals but because of how well this game was made. They took a rough game and made it into something more engaging and interesting than the originals. It is very difficult to take such a beloved game and improve it to these lengths.

While some things are questionable in choice like removing the blood in falls, they bring something that has plenty of style in return. Such as the rewinding effect after you fall, or the redesign of the second game’s helicopter, making it fly around the secret area. This remake wears it’s age on it’s sleeve and is dripping with flare and it is worth every penny.

It is on sold on Xbox One, Playstation 4, and on the Epic Games launcher on PC. It is sold for $40 usd on all platforms. And since there are two games in this remake, along with create-a-skater, park builder, and multiplayer it is absolutely worth the $40. I highly recommend any fans of the originals to grab Tony Hawk Pro Skater 1+2 immediately.

Nathan Lambias
Amateur Writer and Reviewer. I enjoy a wide variety of game genres but my favorites are First Person Shooters, Role-playing games, and occasionally Puzzle games.

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