When Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 1 & 2 made a rather surprising appearance last year, millions of old school fans were quick to question whether or not Activision would remaster the other games in the timeline. Sadly, as much as followers pleaded — the skateboarding kingpin refused to make shallow promises. Instead, we were handed the two incredible Pro Skater games and left to reminisce over our younger years. Of course, that’s all well and good — but we’d love to see the series rebooted in full someday.
Many have stepped up to bat in the skateboarding scene — but none have quite reached the same level of acclaim as the Tony Hawk’s series. It’s ludicrously OTT, fast-paced and totally outrageous — and that’s we love it. And, if it were up to us — we’d remaster the entire library for next-gen consoles. However, if we had to choose five and five only — it’d have to be these icons.
5. Tony Hawk’s American Wasteland
While not possessing the most ambitious storyline in the world, American Wasteland did introduce certain aspects that previous chapters lacked. Not only did the Wasteland entry showcase some rather pleasing visuals and stylised embellishments — but also introduced BMX’s to the fold, too. That’s when we knew the Hawk series was taking a turn for the better.
Although not exactly a gripping tale packed full of twists and turns, American Wasteland did exactly what it said on the tin. It gave players a skateboarding experience and an almighty, although expected, soundtrack that suited the Hawk series to the ground. That’s really all we can want from the iconic franchise — and we think American Wasteland would make for a fantastic remaster.
4. Tony Hawk’s Proving Ground
Proving Ground followed on from the rather monotonous entry, Project 8, which, thankfully managed to resurrect the beloved timeline. Again, not exactly shoving mind-boggling plotlines down your throat, but still maintaining an enticing feel through gameplay — Proving Ground still managed to find a home through new approaches.
While building an empire on the street is the primary goal to the game, players can also choose a path of either career, rigger or hardcore routes to branch out from. That proved to be a quirky change in pace compared to previous instalments. Of course, by implementing various routes, Proving Ground became an entry that we wanted to replay a few times over to explore other options. And, you know — we’d play it again in a heartbeat.
3. Tony Hawk’s Underground 2
In terms of plot, Underground 2 seemed like a rather simplistic journey with very little to entice the skater. On the gameplay side of things, however, being inducted into a global skating tour couldn’t have been more of a gripping experience. Although somewhat basic in terms of having to acquire points by completing death-defying stunts and wacky lines, Underground 2 still managed to draw the player through hilarious cameos and open-end gameplay.
As the second chapter to the Underground series, we had super high expectations from Activision. We crossed everything in the hopes the skateboarding fanatics would pull through with a new take on the franchise. And, well — they captured their niche rather flawlessly, to be honest. Tony Hawk’s Underground 2 is still very much considered to be one of the best in the series — and we totally get that. Activision — are you listening?
2. Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 3
After the launch of the Pro Skater 1 & 2 remakes last year, it truly is only a matter of time before the third and fourth are delved into as well. After all, Pro Skater 3 managed to surpass the previous entries’ expectations tenfold after releasing in 2001. By sticking to the same best-selling algorithm that captured the hearts of Pro Skater fans in previous years, Activision was able to strike thrice with even more skating carnage.
Again, following the same simplistic design with familiar goals, Pro Skater adapted to new levels and maps while keeping the niche at the forefront of the experience. Collecting SKATE, or having to locate that iconic secret tape — it was all there and more. You could even call it timeless in the skating scene — and that’s why we think it deserves to be brought up to 2021. Plus, as this year will mark its twentieth anniversary — it would sort of make sense to bring it back. But we’ll be keeping an ear to the ground on that one. They’ll listen eventually, right? Right?
1. Tony Hawk’s Underground
Yes — it’s another Underground game. And yes — we think it deserves the top spot on the list. Why? Well, where do we start? Underground was the very beginning to a whole new journey within the skateboarding universe. After steering the ship away from repetitive goals and two-minute sessions, Activision looked to evolve on the series as a whole. That, of course, meant actually implementing a genuine story where players could create a skater and craft a legacy from the streets of New Jersey to the leaderboards in Tampa.
Tony Hawk’s Underground was able to gift players with a well-rounded four or five-hour story that never strayed too far from the much-loved original elements. Skating was just as much fun as the Pro Skater series, and navigating the open-world levels with no time restraints amounted to relaxed sessions with unlimited possibilities. That, on top of a pretty charming band of characters, resulted in a one of a kind entry. We’re just hoping the Hawk himself will set the wheels in motion on this one. Fingers crossed, hey?