Review

Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 1 and 2 Review – Once again nailing the trick

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Forget about the weird peripherals, bad sequels, and questionable ports that defined Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater in the later years of the series. Instead, remember the glory days of the late 90s and early 2000s, because that’s where you go with Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 1 and 2. Going back to the first two games in the franchise and modernizing them with changes big and small, developer Vicarious Visions reminds us why we fell in love with this series in the first place. The overall structure remains completely intact: you select levels based on different locations in the world, then get on your skateboard to achieve goals like getting the highest score before the time expires, collecting letters to spell “skate” And do specific area tours. Vicarious Visions keeps much of the best parts of the game intact, but various improvements, including a larger arsenal of cheats, take these classics to new heights. Pairing figures is amazing thanks to smoother controls, and modern visuals look great on the move. While these games are fun regardless of the nostalgia, as a fan of the original games, I loved how this version continually gives nods to the classic versions. With all of the real-life skaters from those first two games, an improved skater creation mode, and nearly every song from the classic soundtracks, this is a set of remasters that will be enjoyed by everyone. Stepping back into Tony Hawk’s shoes and smashing a halfpipe as Goldfinger’s “Superman” hits my speakers made me smile. However, this set also adds several current skateboarders and a huge selection of new songs. By masterfully mixing the old and the new, Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 1 and 2 land on an ideal spot. All levels of the original games are also available, with nice makeovers for current technology. I have always been impressed by the beauty of these new environments. The scenes are true to the versions you played 20 years ago, while simultaneously showcasing the appearance of new creations. Perhaps most surprising is how the levels hold up today; Skating the streets of San Francisco and New York is always fun, and the timeless designs of Warehouse, Hangar and Chicago Skatepark keep me coming back time and time again. The levels feature fun paths on which you can string together massive combos, as well as huge ramps to launch, countless rails and ridges to grind on, and plenty of items to pierce. The only downside to these steps is that some of the items you’re supposed to destroy, like school bells or “No Skating” signs in Minneapolis, can be harder to spot because there is a lot more going on. with the visuals now. If you are looking for new places to skate, you can design the park of your dreams. With a huge selection of elements to choose from, including smart objects that you can bend at multiple points of articulation, the intuitive authoring tools make it easier than ever to bring your mind park to the screen. Once you’re done, you can upload your creation to share with other players. I loved exploring the community functionality; my favorite created parks ended up being wacky ideas, like an automated roller coaster so you could get around, rather than more traditional skateparks. Unfortunately, sometimes I get stuck inside objects in created parks because the pieces don’t fit together as perfectly as in the levels created by the developers. Besides sharing your parks, you can also participate in online matches. In the frenetic and fun online sessions, you participate in a random objective playlist of quick matches where eight players vie for first place. These objectives are as simple as getting the highest score within the time limit or landing the best single combo, or as offbeat as graffiti mode, where you try to score as many objects as possible by performing tricks on them. I love how you’re basically in the next match as soon as you’ve finished the one before it, with players able to seamlessly join and drop without everyone needing to go back to a lobby. While I enjoy the structure of the online game, the experience wears off quickly due to repetitive goals and the inability to play some of the local multiplayer offerings like HORSE- and Tag online. Despite making some money to spend on cosmetics in the skate shop, I didn’t feel motivated to stick around for more than a few laps at a time. Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 1 and 2 make the experience of playing these games fresh and current again. With contemporary graphics, smooth gameplay, and the iconic soundtrack you remember, the Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater franchise could once again have a bright future thanks to this formidable blast from the past.

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