The Tony Hawk Pro Skater series, at one time, was the standard by which “x games” series gaming titles were measured by. When it first launched in 1999, it was quite literally a genre defining game. Great gameplay, graphics and a soundtrack that had people moving in their collective seats. There have been many releases across many systems over the years but none of them ever had the same kind of critical acclaim as the first 2.
When this remaster was announced earlier this year, I was pretty excited for the game to reach a whole new generation of gamers but at the time I struggled to get excited about it for myself. The grindiness of the game was great for me when I was in college but my tastes and life has changed dramatically so as much as I wanted to play it, I didn’t think it would offer enough to me to want to jump in but the reviews kept rolling in from people I know and respect greatly. Was I missing out? Then my awesome Activision rep offered me a copy late in the day on Friday and suddenly my excitement began to build again. So how was my time with Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 1+2 Remaster?
The first thing you’re going to notice is this game was literally rebuilt from the ground up. Graphically Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 1+2 Remaster, is nothing short of stunning. From the textures on the pavement right down to the puddles the art team has really outdone themselves. Controls are modern but tight. Pulling off tricks and combos, while challenging, are exciting and feel natural when pulling them off after much practice.
The feeling of nostalgia while dropping into the levels was strong. And this is where the game is sure to be a massive hit with some people. Some people will be whisked away to their childhood while others will be reminded of college days in a friends apartment blasting the soundtrack while playing and throwing back a few wobbly pops.
The levels, from my recollection, are there and intact from my recollection. They felt both familiar and foreign at the same time and it was a real treat going through the stages seeking out the various collectibles while shredding jumps, wall rides etc. I have to admit though.. it took me a LOOOOOONNGG time getting some of these challenges complete but I had a great time doing it.
As a refresher for those of us who may have fuzzy memories, from a gameplay perspective, the levels are locked away behind a series of tasks under a 2 minute time restriction to complete tasks. You’re never going to get all tasks complete in the 2 minutes.. At least I know I never will but the fast frantic pacing of the game is still just as enjoyable in 2020 as it was in 1999.
If there’s anything to complain about, it’s the lack of a photo mode which I don’t normally spend much time in, but I can see there being some major disappointment in that because I think that was a huge missed opportunity for those enthusiasts. This game/sport screams high action and should have a photo mode. Aside from that one small omission, this is pretty well as perfect a remaster as anyone can get.
Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 1+2 Remaster is out now on PS4, Xbox One and PC.
Graphics are outstanding
The soundtrack is just as enjoyable and infectious as ever
High replay value
Split-screen and online gameplay is a ton of fun
Controls are responsive and pulling off combos feels awesome
No camera mode feels like an oversight
*note* Activision provided us with a review copy of the game on launch day