Remember when Tony Hawk games were awesome? When the countless sequels that followed part 2 (which I still feel is the best of the bunch) failed to innovate or simply excite, most simply went on with their lives, though a few of us found solace in the vastly superior when all was said and done Skate from EA. Well, with a limp franchise on its hands, Activision decided to inject the series with a massive dose of plastic, since it obviously worked so well for Guitar Hero. And the verdict?
Didn’t work. The critics have basically confirmed everyone’s assumptions, that being the game is just plain awkward and not at all fun to play. And what’s the reaction of the man whose name is attached to the game? Not fair he says: “They were ready to discredit it before they even tried it, and if it didn’t play exactly how they imagined it… then they passed it off.”
According to The Sudbury Star Hawk was actually heavily involved in the game, hence the hard feelings he’s exhibiting. Most of the complaints revolve around, not surprisingly, the controller, which elicited this response: “I don’t agree with people who say the board’s not responsive… I think that they’re just not giving it a fair shake. And I think a lot of them came into it with an attitude that it’s going to suck.”
Well, it’s not completely unreasonable to believe that many are not giving it a fair shake. Then again, many of those folks who were determined to hate the Wii at first, due to bizarre control mechanics that seemed so foreign at the time, were eventually won over. How? Because it was actually good, and since we’ve already seen good examples of decent motion control, people now have enough to draw from when listing complaints. Plus, overall, gamers are far more open-mind and receptive to new forms of gameplay experiences.
Hawk also thinks that everyone had already made up their minds well before the game came out, maybe because people have a habit of turning on something that’s been at the top for too long. This happens all the time actually; sometimes a once hot red musician or actor’s fans will immediately turn on their person they used to cherish and worship. It’s one of the funnier things about people. But in the world of video games? Gamers are fickle, that much is certain, though loyalty when it comes to a particular video game series or brand is not as strong as some would like to believe.
The last quote sticks out the most: “I know that (RIDE) is super fun, and I think there’s a misconception that I just stick my name on a game… I brought this idea to Activision, and I saw it through, I’ve been playing it every step of the way and I am very proud of it.” And its genuinely nice to know that he was an active participant in the game creation process. I personally figured that his name was slapped on the project for a nice sum and that was it, so color me misinformed. But sometimes, you just have to leave the game making to the game makers.