Tony Hawk's Pro Skater series

This is where you can deliberate anything relating to videogames - past, present and future.
Post Reply
User avatar
JaySevenZero
Admin
Posts: 2108
Joined: August 27th, 2012, 2:28 pm
Location: Liverpool, Europe, Earth
Contact:

Tony Hawk's Pro Skater series

Post by JaySevenZero » November 23rd, 2015, 12:12 pm

Here's where you can write up your thoughts and opinions for any of the Tony Hawk's Pro Skater core series (1-5)

User avatar
seansthomas
Member
Posts: 662
Joined: March 31st, 2015, 6:10 am

Re: Tony Hawk's Pro Skater core series (1-5)

Post by seansthomas » February 15th, 2016, 8:10 am

THIS IS WHAT ITS LIKE WHEN WORLDS COLLIDE!!!

I loved Tony Hawks 2. It is the perfect 'one more go' videogame. I've never liked skateboarding, many of the bands on the soundtrack or combo based games and yet THPS2 remains up there with some of the best gaming memories I have. I spent hours on it replaying section after section to find hidden achievements or finally grind that aeroplane propeller.

The controls were super tight, the levels struck that fine balance of being open and experimental but hid secrets and alternate routes cleverly and there were pay offs which rewarded every minute invested. If developers could bottle the learning curve, unlockables and fun of this title, they'd always be onto a winner.

I also made one of my best friends through it. I sensed early on in our wasted Uni hours together that he didn't initially like me very much, but rather my copy of this game and my female housemate. Many evenings were spent taking it in turns playing this and after a while - and a drunken moment between him and her - he spent more time in my house than I did. We've since become close friends, living together for years, and the aforementioned couple went on to even greater things, producing a wannabe Tony Hawks Junior themselves.

I tried to connect with latter games in the series but they always yielded diminishing returns. I think they just got so much right in number 2 that I was done with the genre almost instantly. Jumping out of that helicopter and nailing the perfect combo or grinding across that whole school level remain achievements few games have bettered since.

A product of its time I suspect, and one I've never returned to, but a true PSOne classic.

3 word review: Grinding I endorse

User avatar
Alex79uk
Member
Posts: 5095
Joined: September 2nd, 2012, 10:36 am
Location: Redditch, UK.
Contact:

Re: Tony Hawk's Pro Skater core series (1-5)

Post by Alex79uk » February 15th, 2016, 9:56 am

My love for skateboarding games goes right back to both 720° in the arcades and the brutally difficult half pipe section in seminal summer classic, California Games. I remember the demo of the first Tony Hawk game hitting the disc of the official Playstation magazine back in the day and just playing it over and over again. It was amazing. You were giving the entire first stage, and by the time I got my hands on the full game I had become something of a Tony Hawks master. Both of the first two games in the series were genuine PS1 classics - everything about them seemed to have been designed specifically for what I was in to at the time, from the grimy industrial aesthetic to the punky soundtrack (which seemed to become slightly more commercial with each release) and I absolutely lapped it up.

I think I bought every iteration of the game right up to Project 8 (including the GBA and DS releases) and I rinsed every last bit of enjoyment I could possibly get out of all of them. I think I'm probably one of the few people who actually thought the game improved when they introduced more of an open world, did away with the timer and let you get off your board. And besides, that original classic game mode was still in the game as an individual mission, so you could still enjoy that time limited letter collecting or high score chasing, just as part of a much larger and more varied game.

The game took a bit of a swerve when it introduced the Underground games to the series, featuring characters from Jackass and ridiculous stunts - I think you could even ride a mechanical bull at one point, but again - I loved it all!

I've not played a Tony Hawk game for some time, and I suspect returning to 1-3 after all these years might be something of a nostalgia breaker, but I'm willing to bet 4 onwards still hold up fantastically well. Absolutely fantastic games, and I real shame that the series just kind of went a bit crap in the end. But still, those old games, they were brilliant.

Three word review - SKATE OR DIE!

User avatar
Addman
Member
Posts: 11
Joined: January 7th, 2016, 2:21 pm

Re: Tony Hawk's Pro Skater core series (1-5)

Post by Addman » February 15th, 2016, 11:19 am

Before the Tony Hawk games, I had never really been interested in skateboarding. After a brief stint on the first game via demo disc, I was instantly hooked. I was left wondering if the crazy stunts that these virtual skaters could perform were achievable in real life.

The Tony Hawk's Pro Skater series arrived while me and my friend were at an impressionable age. We would spend hours desperately trying to beat each other's high scores, sometimes staying up until the early hours of the morning. We had a friendly yet fierce rivalry, and while we played other games together, the Tony Hawk's series was always a staple of our teenage years. Horse was a specific highlight where we would enter increasingly insultive words, raising the stakes (and our vocabularies) considerably and casting eternal shame upon the loser.

Our love for the series reached its peak with THPS3. The addition of reverts really accelerated the craziness of our combos, with scores reaching several million on near-perfect runs. The soundtrack was exceptional, especially the inclusion of Del Tha Funkee Homosapien. Also, Rodney Mullen's skate video is still one of the skate videos I have ever seen.

While the series started to fall out of favour with us after Tony Hawk's Underground, I think that the first four Pro Skater games helped to inform and influence our interests at a young age. The recent fifth Pro Skater game failed to ignite that spark again, but still, we'll always have THPS3.

User avatar
TheEmailer
Member
Posts: 48
Joined: October 5th, 2015, 8:46 am

Re: Tony Hawk's Pro Skater core series (1-5)

Post by TheEmailer » April 3rd, 2016, 9:47 am

Simple and compact is best.

Looking back over the series, to when I lost passion for it, three things come to mind.
The more complexity to the controls the series added it took away from the simplicity of the challenge. Hit the jumps right, perform a trick and land it where you want to. Make that jump up to the hidden area.
The compact levels of the early games that were dense with challenges work better than sprawling levels that require commuting. On a compact level, you weave between intertwined goals, trying to fit as much in. For a large level, on a single run you can't see half the map. I guess this is why I never got into EAs Skate series.
Storytelling, or character arcs in the later games really weren't needed or frankly any good. Being openly, frankly a video-game with goals to get just because was good enough.

User avatar
NeoGazza
Member
Posts: 18
Joined: December 11th, 2015, 9:23 am
Contact:

Re: Tony Hawk's Pro Skater core series (1-5)

Post by NeoGazza » July 13th, 2016, 5:25 am

Instead of talking about the series, the ONE that stands out obviously is nr. 2 - the one that changed the series. By God, I don't want to know how much time I wasted trying to make the longest trick combo. Unlike the SKATE series (which represented true skating in a much better fashion in my opinion), Hawk was all about having ridiculous fun. I didn't even care about unlocks or high scores, they were implicit rewards from just having fun.
The memories I have of this game are fantastic and therefore I would never ever go back to playing it again since I am sure that it has aged horrendously. Man, I feel old now :(

User avatar
hazeredmist
Member
Posts: 1190
Joined: June 25th, 2013, 10:45 am
Location: The DMZ
Contact:

Re: Tony Hawk's Pro Skater core series (1-5)

Post by hazeredmist » July 28th, 2016, 11:08 am

I once broke my friends PS1 controller trying to do the "Holy Shit!" grind on Tony Hawk's Pro Skater. True story!

I did the grind in the end :D

User avatar
TheEmailer
Member
Posts: 48
Joined: October 5th, 2015, 8:46 am

Re: Tony Hawk's Pro Skater core series (1-5)

Post by TheEmailer » September 4th, 2016, 10:51 am

TheEmailer wrote:Simple and compact is best.

Looking back over the series, to when I lost passion for it, three things come to mind.
The more complexity to the controls the series added it took away from the simplicity of the challenge. Hit the jumps right, perform a trick and land it where you want to. Make that jump up to the hidden area.
The compact levels of the early games that were dense with challenges work better than sprawling levels that require commuting. On a compact level, you weave between intertwined goals, trying to fit as much in. For a large level, on a single run you can't see half the map. I guess this is why I never got into EAs Skate series.
Storytelling, or character arcs in the later games really weren't needed or frankly any good. Frankly a video-game with achievements for achievements' sake was good enough.

User avatar
Sam Worms
Member
Posts: 4
Joined: September 12th, 2016, 6:10 pm

Re: Our next-but-one podcast recording (22.9.16): Tony Hawk's Pro Skater core series (1-5)

Post by Sam Worms » September 12th, 2016, 8:07 pm

I have incredibly fond memories of hurrying home after elementary school and popping Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 1 into my friend's N64. I remember the opening cinematic with the guy going around the loops and can still hear the rockabilly guitar screech like it was yesterday. We loved playing game after game of "HORSE" and trying our best to power though the main story so we could challenge each other on new maps.

I remember playing the sequel and thinking it was basically the same game but with a different soundtrack. Again, countless hours challenging my friends to games of "HORSE" and Trick Attack. I don't even want to think about the amount of Mtn. Dew we consumed.

I don't know why but I skipped the 3rd in the series. The 4th may be my favorite - I easily spent the most time with it. The Alcatraz level sticks out most in my mind. Particularly the mission where you had to do the tricks called out to you by the ghosts in their prison cells. The best part was the Xbox allowing me to download music to the console that could be used in-game. Nothing quite like zipping through the streets of London listening to The Beatles whilst grinding on double-decker buses.

After that, I lost interest in the franchise. I specifically remember reading the reviews for TH Underground and the new feature of being able to hop off your board and run around on foot. I recall being turned off by the concept -it became less about doing tricks and linking combos and more about bull runs and tomato fights. (Plus, I always thought Bam Margera was kind of a douche)

Jump ahead 14 years. I started hearing buzz about THPS 5 and began to feel nostalgic. I was reluctant to try it because of how much the series diminished in my mind so I decided to wait on the reviews. With an abysmal 32 on Metcritic, I decided to avoid the game entirely and keep my childhood memories untarnished. To me, Tony Hawk will always remain a staple in my personal gaming journey. I hope that someday they will be able to recapture the magic of the first few games and finally do them justice on current consoles.

Three Word Review: Use the D-pad

Image

User avatar
ThirdMan
Member
Posts: 763
Joined: May 22nd, 2016, 9:00 pm
Location: Ireland

Re: Our next-but-one podcast recording (22.9.16): Tony Hawk's Pro Skater core series (1-5)

Post by ThirdMan » September 13th, 2016, 2:15 pm

Snip.

User avatar
TacoTruckSpill
Member
Posts: 2
Joined: September 15th, 2016, 6:09 pm

Re: Our next-but-one podcast recording (22.9.16): Tony Hawk's Pro Skater core series (1-5)

Post by TacoTruckSpill » September 15th, 2016, 7:48 pm

The Tony Hawk series defined my high school years. I've spent more time playing 1-5 than any other series, which solidified a lot of my closest friendships as we completely immersed ourselves in skateboard culture. We'd skate around our small town on weeknights and weekends, then watch 411 Video Magazine tapes and take turns skating single sessions on the PS1 classic while trying to one-up each other with high scores. I remember closely studying the character animations in order to replicate them in real life.

A close friend of mine and I played the THPS1 level, Chicago, to the point where we'd make up challenges for each other ie. flipping off the upper level into the lower transition of the pool or hand-planting up in the rafters above the halfpipe, which we thought was a cool glitch—if it even was one.

It was like Christmas morning when gaming magazines would first unveil images of the next Tony Hawk game. Our minds would be blown as we learned about the real-world locations being featured that we'd seen so many times in skate movies, along with the new characters and tricks.

The soundtrack was also an important pillar of the series, exposing us to punk and hip hop that we may have never been exposed to that all fit so well with the gameplay.

I have fond memories of when THPS2 first landed, I rented it with a close friend and we stayed up until the following morning, our eyes bloodshot but still wide and demanding more. The addition of the manual, tail slides and blunt slides completely opened up new gameplay and ways to improvise tricks in certain parts of the levels, i.e. doing a manual down narrow, long ledges or making huge vert transfers. It was truly empowering and when you landed a challenging trick proposed by a friend, the satisfaction was almost as if you had landed it in real life.

I will always look back fondly on the Tony Hawk series, not just for the entertainment value but for the culture it created and the social platform it provided as common ground for building a stronger bond with friends that continues to strive to this day. Thank you, Neversoft.

User avatar
InsrtCoins
Moderator
Posts: 271
Joined: July 28th, 2013, 4:26 am
Location: Seattle, WA, USA
Contact:

Re: Our next podcast recording (22.9.16): Tony Hawk's Pro Skater core series (1-5)

Post by InsrtCoins » September 22nd, 2016, 7:13 am

Lovely stuff, all. Happy to hear all of these fun stories.

User avatar
hazeredmist
Member
Posts: 1190
Joined: June 25th, 2013, 10:45 am
Location: The DMZ
Contact:

Re: Tony Hawk's Pro Skater series

Post by hazeredmist » October 4th, 2016, 6:49 am

Great podcast lads. Superman at the start took me back

User avatar
TacoTruckSpill
Member
Posts: 2
Joined: September 15th, 2016, 6:09 pm

Re: Tony Hawk's Pro Skater series

Post by TacoTruckSpill » October 4th, 2016, 4:40 pm

Great episode! Thanks for reading my post :)

User avatar
Scrustle
Member
Posts: 1869
Joined: November 18th, 2012, 5:02 pm

Re: Tony Hawk's Pro Skater series

Post by Scrustle » October 5th, 2016, 5:29 pm

The only Tony Hawk's game I've owned was Project 8. I was kind of surprised to hear what little time it was given on the podcast was so negative. Didn't expect that it would get much attention at all, but I thought it was one of the more fondly remembered of the later entries in the series. I thought the consensus on it was just a more straight-forward Tony Hawk's game, without too many silly gimmicks, and was mostly true to the originals, if a bit unambitious. I had fun quite a bit of fun with it back in the day. Although, since it's the only one I've owned myself, I guess I don't have that context of having played the others to know how that one felt "wrong". But still, without that context, just taken on its own merits, I think the game felt good to play and handled well. And as for the gimmick it did have with that thumbstick flip trick thing, I quite liked that too. It kind of reminded me of the Uber tricks in SSX. Especially in On Tour, where they used the right stick for them. I also thought it was fun to pull of some insanely impossible intricate trick like that, with the control method being very natural and intuitive. Almost a precursor to the Skate control scheme in a way.

Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 10 guests