Tony Hawks Pro Skater 2 was a childhood classic of mine so I was ecstatic when THPS HD was first announced. When I finally got the chance to play it however, I was more than a little disappointed.
First of all, the game has NO SPLITSCREEN! The highly competitive Horse and Graffiti mode are also missing. Playing Horse with your friends back in the day and changing the word to insult the loser made THPS2 the game that it was, a fun and goofy gaming experience.
Instead, the game features 2 different game modes, Hawkman and Big Head Survival. Hawkman sees you collecting different coloured orbs while skating on a specific line; however it felt more challenging then fun. Big Head Survival on the other hand is a true Pro Skater experience! Players have to score points and keep combos going or their character’s head will inflate until it explodes in a hilarious fashion.
Compared to more recent games in the series, the gameplay feels kind of dated. The more hardcore fans would argue that it stays true to the original, but without the ability to revert off a ramp and continue a manual or level out when airborne; combos can be ended pretty quickly.
Career mode sees you scrambling around the maps collecting letters and objects while preforming tasks and scoring points. Players will be spending most of their time on the classic Hangar and School II maps. But after these however, it feels dragged out and unsatisfactory. The Projectives mode is unlocked when the main career goals are all completed. This is basically a hard mode; where the only difference is you have to collect C-O-M-B-O instead of S-K-A-T-E.
THPS HD is a fun trip down memory lane, but not much else. I only recommend getting it for purely nostalgia’s sake. New players would find the gameplay clunky and unappealing. The lack of Create-A-Skater and Park Editor (which where IN Pro Skater 2!) are another thing missing from a game that could have been so great. Someone seriously dropped the ball. That being said I highly encourage you to download the demo and check it out for yourself, or cut out the middle man and pop Pro Skater 2 into the PSOne.
Review Score : [starreview tpl=16]
Title : Tony Hawks Pro Skater HD
Format : XBLA/PSN/PC
Developer : Robomodo
Publisher : Activison
Release Date : Out Now on XBLA. PSN/PC to be announced
*Activison provided SlimGamer.com with a review code.