Tony Hawks Pro Skater HD Review
The classic skateboarding game returns in HD
Nearly everyone will remember playing Tony Hawks back in the day on their PS1, the game seems to have faded away in recent times but now it’s back with Tony Hawks HD available from the Playstation Store. Tony Hawks HD is a high definition remake of classic levels that everyone will remember from Tony Hawks 1 and 2.
The concept of Tony Hawks is simple, you have an open world play ground in which you must skateboard around and complete various objectives so that you can earn money to improve your attributes and buy new things like skateboards and special tricks.
Racking up high scores is one of the main aims and the best way to do this is through combinations of moves. To score points you need to pull off tricks such as grinds, aerials and flip tricks, if you move seamlessly from one trick to another your multiplier is incremented and when your sequence comes to an end your score is multiplied by multiplier allowing for massive scores to be obtained if you can get big enough combinations.
When you initiate tricks like grinds or hand plants you’re challenged to maintain your composure by keeping a needle within the green area of a bar using the analogue stick.
What makes Tony Hawks so fun is that the physics are quite laid back, and so you can jump into the game with no prior experience of skate boarding games. Wiping out after tricks is no problem either you just get right back up and can try again.
The locations where you skateboard really make the game, they have an incredible amount of depth and lots of cool features as well as being expertly designed so that if you’re good enough you can zip straight through them achieving most of the objectives.
They also feature lots of cool easter eggs, take the hangar for example you can make the helicopter come to life by grinding over the blades or open the wind tunnel by grinding over the propeller blades.
You don’t need to be a Tony Hawks expert to find all of these gems either there’s a map available from the pause menu showing you the location of all the objectives and special tricks.
The load times on this game or rather the lack of them are very impressive, you can jump between menus, levels and game modes very quickly.
The real killer feature though is one that I nearly missed. The game has full online multiplayer featuring all the classic modes.
Free skate lets you mess around on any map learning its secrets whilst chatting to your friends and generally relaxing.
Graffiti requires you to claim pieces of equipment such as rails and ramps scattered throughout the map by performing a higher scoring trick on it than your opponent once the timer expires who ever has claimed the most equipment wins.
Trick attack is the standard score more points than your opponent in two minutes mode and finally there’s big head elimination where you need to keep scoring points or your head will get too big and explode!
The whole online experience is very polished and slick. It has full voice communications, private rooms and invites. Load times are virtually non-existent and the games run completely lag free.
Also, every mode and arena is unlocked from the beginning so you don’t have to slog through the single player before you can have fun online.
Overall this game is great fun, whether you want to just jump on for a quick blast or spend many, many hours digging deep into all this game has to offer and achieve all of the objectives.
By Aaron Kalair
Additional comments from Kristian Salkeld
Tony Hawks for me was one of those games that just didn't do it. If you could get high scores for face planting into the floor then I'd be top of the leader boards.
Tony Hawks finally clicked for me with Tony Hawks 3 on the Playstation 2, it was brilliant. At last I could play these brilliant games. That's when I went back to the two older games.
The HD upgrade on PS3 is a bit of a shocker, in a good way. On first booting up the game you will be taken back at how well this game has held its own. Not only have they upgraded to HD but the game has a new look. It's on par with a PS2 HD game now and runs as sweet as a nut. Controls are as tight as ever.
The best part for me is the online play. Take any of the levels and have fun online with friends. It's brilliant with no lag or connection issues.
For me personally this is an easy 8/10.
PSOnline would like to thank Activision and Robomodo for their support