In a move that many people likely saw coming, Tony Hawk has announced that 2012 will indeed see the release of yet another title in the skateboard franchise bearing his name. But the next game, Tony Hawk Pro Skater HD will be taking a different route than the last few, reviving portions of the series' golden age for an updated, HD release presumably on XBLA and PSN.
Avid fans and critics alike have been wondering how much gas was left in the Tony Hawk tank, due to the skate legend's time away from the current sport, and to the lackluster performance of both Tony Hawk RIDE and SHRED. So when tony Hawk confirmed he'd be making an announcement at tonight's VGAs, there were plenty who worried that history may repeat itself once more.
In an interesting turn, Joystiq managed to squeeze a few details from the Birdman about the release, and it looks like players hoping to get more use out of their skateboard peripheral may be in for some bad news. According to Hawk, Pro Skater HD will be taking some, not all levels from the first two installments of the game, with only 'School' and 'Downhill' confirmed to be among them. In the tradition becoming more and more common, the aforementioned stages will be given a new update to make the most out of the 'digital platforms' they'll be released on.
Considering that those games, and indeed those maps in particular, were the source of the enthusiasm that all but gave birth to skating games, the move makes sense. It's been quite a while since the new king of the genre Skate 3 dropped some novelty on digital thrashers, so the timing could be right if Hawk's release date of 'early 2012' holds true.
With the skate genre one of the few areas where Activision has actively lost ground to publishing competitor Electronic Arts, and with momentum lost, it was going to be interesting to see what they had up their sleeve. As it turns out, it's nostalgia. Reminding fans why they love the series could go along way in making up ground, and it's hard to not be pleasantly surprised that such a beloved remnant of the past consoles will be on its way to digital marketplaces before long.
What do you think of this move to smaller digital release? Think it's better overall for the type of game it is, or do you think this is just an appetizer while a full Hawk release is designed?
We'll keep you posted when more details and a trailer are likely released, but for now it seems that Tony Hawk Pro Skater HD will be coming to XBLA and PSN in early 2012.
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