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Remake 'Tony Hawk's Underground 1+2' Already, You Cowards

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Remake 'Tony Hawk's Underground 1+2' Already, You Cowards

I'm sure you won't be surprised to learn that as a 27-year-old video game journalist who never quite grew out of his emo phase, Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 1+2 - Remastered was entirely My Shit when it released last year.

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I'm of the generation that grew up with the Tony Hawk video games. They're the reason I started skateboarding (badly), learned to play guitar (badly), and dressed like Joey in that episode of Friends where he's trying to pass as a teenager. I was aiming for skate punk, but I overshot and somehow landed on Vanilla Ice look-alike contest hopeful.

Take a look at Tony Hawk himself reacting to some in-game tricks below!

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Anyway, it was a thrill to see the first two games remade with such care and attention, to be provided with a window back to a much simpler time. I maintain Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 2 is one of the finest video games of all time, but now? Now I'm hungry for more remakes - and I know exactly where Activision should start.

The logical choice would of course be for Activision to release remakes of Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 3 and 4. To be honest, I'd be more than a little surprised if they weren't already being worked on somewhere in secret, in the corner of a studio where everybody else is being forced to eat, sleep, and breathe Call Of Duty. Seems like a no-brainer, right?

But if we are getting more Tony Hawk remakes - and that's a big if - I think we should skip the last two Pro Skaters and get right to the really good stuff. I'm talking about Tony Hawk's Underground and its sequel, affectionately referred to as THUG and THUG 2 respectively.

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Nothing against THPS 3 and THPS 4, you understand. I love both games like they're my own children. It's just that I love THUG and THUG 2 as if they were my better, more interesting children who make more money and are ultimately more likely to put me in a good retirement home.

THUG and THUG 2 took everything that made the Pro Skater games great: there are brilliantly designed 3D sandboxes that encourage players to skate on every surface and get inventive in their unending quest to rack up sick combos and outrageous high scores, same as always. But the Underground series took everything that little bit further, opening the action up considerably with larger environments and making it feel more like a real adventure with a rags-to-riches story mode. Also Shrek was an unlockable character. I'm not sure what more you could want from a game, to be honest.

Tony Hawk's Underground / Credit: Activision
Tony Hawk's Underground / Credit: Activision
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There's also a much greater focus on customisation and player progression. Granted, Pro Skater always offered some degree of create-a-skater fun and there were stats to be invested in, but there was almost this RPG element to the Underground games as you built your protagonist from the ground up and put them in a unique story that saw them meet some of the sports' great heroes.

Oh, you could also get off your board at any time, which was something of a game-changer for the series. I know that doesn't sound like much, but not having to navigate your skater to very specific points on a fiddly board just to pull off a trick was a welcome change, one that added to the games' sense of freedom.

Much like Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 1+2 - Remastered, any potential Underground remakes would need very little changing in terms of gameplay. Tighten up a few things here and there, sure, but for the most part, it only really needs a visual facelift and some new online features to extend its longevity. Make it happen, Activision. You know it makes sense.

Featured Image Credit: Activision

Topics: News, Tony Hawk's Pro Skater, Activision

Ewan Moore
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