Very few children in the nineties don’t remember the eyeball with the Neversoft logo as a reaction to it.
Over time, the irreverent discovery of cult games has become synonymous with PS1.
Everybody was playing. It belonged to everyone. And everyone loved it. It was a bomb, as the kids might have said at the time.
And with such success, Activision continued to play one radical game after another almost every year until… Until when?
You don’t hear much about the show these days. But this series has been intense in the past and has marked the history of the games.
Join me on a tour of the franchises of the past 20 years, following the ranking of every game and exploring the highs and lows of the Tony Hawke video game series.
16. Tony Hawke’s Attraction (2009)
One of the elements that made Tony Hawke lose interest was the Robomodo developer, who took over the franchise.
Ryde was the first of his contributions. And for some, the beginning of the end.
Tony Hawk’s Ride, released for the Xbox360 and PS3 consoles, has left the traditional controller to focus on a skateboarder that allows you to move the skateboarder while balancing on it.
Honestly, it didn’t work. And that only made the game difficult and uncomfortable.
At the beginning of the game there wasn’t much content either.
It would be a periphery, and while it might have been fun to try it first, the novelty soon went crazy and left you with a bad attempt to buy back the madness of traffic control and the insult to old fans.
15. Tony Hawk Scrap (2010)
The next game Robomodo developed was essentially the same as Ride, except that it now has some content for snowboarding.
Of course the peripherals worked much better than the skateboard.
But the whole concept of the game remained the same malicious attempt to revive the franchise with a trick control.
14th professional figure skater Tony Hawk 5 (2015)
Robomodo’s most serious crime should be professional skater Tony Hawk 5. The game that ended the franchise.
It was released on Xbox One and PS4 and promised to return to its roots to relaunch the franchise.
Nothing could be further from the truth.
For Activision, this was just the last attempt to buy Tony Hawke’s name before his rights expire at the end of 2015.
It was a rush job that used the return to basics as an excuse to abandon the need to develop a historical regime and many other important features that the fans were expecting at the time.
The graphics were mediocre for the name of the new generation, the combo system was simple and uninspiring, and even the steps (there were few) were soft and painfully simplified.
In general, the term disappointment is far from describing this game.
13. Tony Hawke’s Movement (2008)
Considering that skateboarding is such a dynamic and fast sport, it is not surprising that Activision found it a good idea to use her skateboard franchise as a guinea pig to control the movement.
Tony Hawk’s Motion, developed by Creat Studios for the Nintendo DS, revolves around a cartridge that acts as an additional accelerometer for the console. This allows the player to control his character by turning and rotating the PDA.
Junky, a clumsy control that should never have been there.
In addition, the Creat Studios team invests all of its resources in the development of add-ons and operating systems rather than in the creation of content for the game.
They left with an excuse for a release that is more of a proof of concept than a game with so little content.
The only reason I put it on Ride is because you would have spent a lot less money on it than on skateboard peripherals.
12. Tony Hawke (2006)
After Tony Hawk’s American Wasteland failed to achieve the commercial success that Activision had hoped for in 2005, the company hired toy developers for Bob to relaunch the franchise and transfer it to the Wii console.
His answer was Downhill Jam. A game that brought the show into town.
Unlike the previous entries in the list, this game is not really that bad.
It has colorful graphics, acceptable controls and can be very entertaining. …just as entertaining as any racing game.
And that’s what Downhill Jam is all about. Although it’s not a bad Tony Hawk game, it’s not like Tony Hawk’s game.
This puts aside what was special about the franchise, which has already been improved by other games such as SSX : Delicate games and snowboarding in general.
11. Tony Hawke Skate Jam (2018)
About games that aren’t so badly talked about, here’s one you should definitely check out now if you have a smartphone.
Skate Jam is the last release under the name Tony Hawk and the first release after Activision, where the rights to the name will expire in 2015.
It was developed and published for iOS and Android systems by Maple Media. Maple Media has a long history in developing skateboard games for mobile devices.
The game is essentially an enhanced version of its predecessor, Skateboard Party, which itself was inspired by the classic THPS series.
Despite the fact that the controls sometimes seem somewhat clumsy, the game offers an entertaining experience that reminds us of the good old days of franchising.
10. Tony Hock Pro Skater HD (2012)
One of Robomodo’s good ideas was simply to create an HD remake of classic franchise games for the Xbox360 and PS3 systems.
Although the game is not perfect, this attempt to return the original charm of the series with updated graphics was a step in the right direction.
And it’s a great option if you want to survive the glory days, but can’t handle the outdated graphics of the PS1/PS2 era.
9. Tony Hawke Test Site (2007)
The last part, developed by Neversoft, appeared for the Xbox360 and PS3 based on the premise of having the largest environments that the series has known so far.
Proving Ground – a pretty solid game and a decent farewell to the Neversoft franchise.
The career mode follows the player as he tries to establish himself as one of the three types of skaters: Career, hardcore and rigging. Each of them focuses on different aspects of the sport.
The most important addition to the game formula is : extended areas where you can skate, which contains several steps from previous games integrated into a larger space.
Although he’s funny at first, he doesn’t contribute much to the game, which makes him seem a little uninspired and distracted in the end.
Overall, it’s a solid game, but not the best. It’s worth playing if you have time.
8. Tony Hawke Project 8 (2006)
Prior to the review of the reasons, there was Project 8.
It came from the same year as the Downhill Jam. But unlike Bob’s toys, Neversoft has managed to revive the franchise by building it from scratch.
Physics seemed sweet and natural. And all in all, the game was better than ever.
One of the most important changes is the addition of the Nail-The-Trick mechanism, a mini-game in which the right and left sticks are moved during large air moments to … Well, to put my finger on the trick.
Unfortunately, the game was not as good as it could have been commercially, which was largely due to the fact that the series lost a lot of power at the time.
7. Tony Hawkes U.S. Brownfield (2005)
The American wasteland was the moment in the series when it became clear that Neversoft no longer knew where to get the franchise.
It is designed for PS2 and other 6th generation consoles. Generation is out and offers a solid experience with Tony Hawk.
But there was nothing new in the game that Underground 2 didn’t have, except the possibility of BMXing. It sounded like an excuse to say there was something new.
Not another bad name, but maybe not the most memorable one here.
6th professional figure skater Tony Hawk (1999)
Finally, there is the original PS1 game, in which ushered in the revolution that would determine the future of extreme sports games as we know them.
It’s a game that Neversoft saved from disintegration at the time. What drove them to use all their passion, sweat and tears to create the best possible game.
This selflessness is expressed in her creativity, enthusiasm and, to put it simply, her humour.
Tony Hawk came up with the idea in 1998, and has been involved in the development of the game as a consultant and tester.
The famous skater undoubtedly contributed to giving a sense of authenticity and a true reflection of the skating culture.
The levels were fascinating and designed in such a way that you always have to face a new challenge, another crazy thing to land, and another secret to find.
All this was accompanied by what could have been the best soundtrack of theera.
Punk masters like Dead Kennedys and Suicidal Tendencies filled the game with rebellious energy and charm, while Superman Goldfinger made you do the scenes again until he was first on the playlist.
The gameplay was simple and intuitive for all ages. And although physics seemed somewhat unnatural from a modern point of view, it was more than enough for its time.
Just load up, drive around in circles, grab some glasses, sharpen the rails and you’re done. That’s all it took.
5th Professional figure skater Tony Hawk 2 (2000)
For the second part of the series, Neversoft simply captured what they liked in the first game and brought it to perfection.
Where the first was experienced, there was an order in the second.
The addition of a levelling function has been greatly improved and has easily added hundreds of hours of repeatability.
The soundtrack continues to distinguish itself, with artists such as Papa Roach and Rage Against The Machine helping to determine the identity of the franchise.
It was this game that brought the series into the collective consciousness of the masses. And it’s probably the one that has had the biggest impact on pop culture, revived interest in skating and inspired shows like Rocket Power (where Tony Hawk even played cameo’s at one point).
4th professional figure skater Tony Hawk 4 (2002)
Never before had the company created, refined or perfected the concept of the THPS game with the three previous parts. This time the experiments with a somewhat absurd combination system are back.
This system has taken air time to a new level, so it’s a welcome change. But the development team also took the bold decision to give up the stopwatch in career mode.
The level of design remains excellent, even for popular gems such as the Alcatraz escape scene.
It also builds on the online capabilities of its predecessor by adding additional modes such as King of the Hill, my favorite.
3. Tony Hawke Underground (2003)
After a short experimental exercise on the THPS4, Neversoft decided to take a step forward and reinvent the franchise.
This has been achieved through bold innovations such as off-board mobility and a new RPG style development for your skater.
The graphics have also been greatly improved and made more colourful to give the background its own unique style.
The game has a fascinating story that follows your character as he tries to become a figure skater as famous as Tony Hawk.
The level of game design has maintained the high quality of the series, but has added a whole new level of depth with the freedom for developers to move around on the board.
It is a game that has marked the era of the 6th generation of consoles. The generation in the series is really defined.
2. Tony Hawke underground 2 (2004)
After the resounding success of Underground, its successor has improved the new formula by adding more content and improving the engine.
It is considered by many technical masterpieces to be the only best Tony Hawk game for this experience.
To be honest, this game is probably just as good (if not better) than the first place on my list.
If it weren’t for the fact that the whole marketing plan for him was extremely… business for him.
Underground 2’s career path revolves around Jackass’ celebrity Bam Margera, and the whole game essentially follows the concept of the Jackass series, but on skateboards.
Running around in the name of a celebrity to sell your game is a bit debatable, but it’s fine if you do it tactfully.
But it’s very cheap to use a real TV star as an extra commercial profit. Although he is a professional skateboarder, he only took a small step back from a perhaps brilliant game.
1st professional figure skater Tony Hawk 3 (2001)
After commercial success and reviews, THPS2 Neversoft was put up for sale (read: moolah).
Probably all his employees were drunk when they did their due diligence. All that energy and drive has been used to develop their first game for the next generation of consoles, including the PS2, Gamecube and the original Xbox.
The THPS3 will remain the ultimate of the Tony Hawk Pro Skater experience in its most challenging form.
The game featured flawless graphics, the smoothest gameplay of the time and some of the best phases of the series, such as the creative suburbs and the visually impressive level of Tokyo.
The soundtrack, with artists such as Red Hot Chili Peppers and Xzibit, was also well chosen to accompany the skateboarding experience of the time.
This game may not be the most innovative, but it is a game where nothing seems useless or inappropriate.
Even if you play it today, you will notice that it is not as old as some of the new items in the list. If you want a THPS correction, look no further than this masterpiece.
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