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From the first time I played Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 1 + 2 last year, I was besotted by it. The way Vicarious Visions managed to capture the feel of the original THPS games, yet somehow bring them into the modern day with more fluid movement and gorgeous graphics, is nothing short of amazing. But old VV weren't done impressing, were they? The cheeky devils have now brought the remaster to Nintendo Switch, and the result is awe-inspiring.
It's no secret that Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 1 + 2 is a great game. Reviewers across the board love the game (including our own Mark Foster), and fans almost unanimously feel this is a truly excellent remaster. As such, I won't be discussing the game in full here. Instead, this is a test of how the game handles on Switch, although I haven't tried multiplayer yet.
Watch Tony Hawk himself react to impressive Pro Skater gameplay
Loading the game up, I was a tad concerned by some framerate drops on the intro developer credit screens. Luckily, this jarring visual experience ends here. The intro video sequence runs perfectly, and that's much more telling of the actual gameplay of Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 1 + 2, in both handheld and TV modes.
Playing handheld, I was slack-jawed. I know it's nothing new to see current-gen games running on Nintendo Switch, but when I'm busting combos and finding secret tapes on a tiny screen while lying in bed, I can't help but feel stunned with joy. The idea of playing Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 1 + 2 next time I'm on public transport actually has me excited to get all squished on a filthy train while people around me refuse to wear masks as they cough up the majority of their lungs. I guess that's a good thing on the whole.
Maybe there's an element of nostalgia here, as I loved THPS games as a kid. After all, the series was a cultural phenomenon back in the day, something I spoke to professional skateboarder Eric Koston about. It's not just that, though. The game runs so smoothly, with each level gleaming immaculately. The free-flowing movement of each character as they tear through skate spots is a sight to behold. This may be the most immersive way to play Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 1 + 2.
When playing on the TV, Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 1 + 2 runs just as well as it does on my PlayStation 4. Don't get me wrong, you can tell it's on a slightly less powerful console, but the experience never really suffers for it. The arcadey gameplay of THPS games never needs overly polished graphics anyway, and when you're vibing to the banger-after-banger soundtrack, it's impossible not to have a good time.
It would've been nice to properly test out the multiplayer. After all, as the Switch doesn't have a dedicated party chat feature, the experience could feel inferior to playing on other platforms. There's always Discord for that, though.
In short, Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 1 + 2 on Nintendo Switch is a masterstroke. Playing handheld is more immersive than any other platform, while TV mode holds its own as a single-player experience. If you own the game on another system already, I'd only suggest adding this version to your collection if you don't get much big screen time. However, if you've yet to invest in this game, now is the time.
Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 1 + 2 is out on June 25th for Nintendo Switch. The game was tested with code supplied by the publisher. Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 1 + 2 is also available for PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S and PC.
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