Nostalgic gamers rejoice! Tony Hawk Pro Skater: 1+2 have been remastered and are out now for PC, PS4 and Xbox.
I've had a few hours to play the game (and many more on the original versions). With that in mind, here are my undisputed, totally correct, scientifically crafted, perfectly curated, undebatable top ten skater power rankings in Tony Hawk Pro Skater 1+2 Remastered.
10. Create a character
Kind of an odd choice to start this list (and will be an odd way to end this list also, but more on that later). Credit to Activision and Vicarious Visions for how they handled the create modes. They are easy to follow, with enough choices to make it feel like your human will be unique, but not enough that you are spending seven hours figuring out how long you want your character's nose hairs to be. It felt in the "just good enough" zone to be acceptable to me. You don't start with the best stats, but that's alright -- you have a character to call your own!
9. Geoff Rowley
This is purely a style pick. The THPS original looks imposing in the selection screen, just daring you to select him. Holding his board in front of him, checkered shirt fully buttoned up all the way to the collar, jeans and Vans, tattoos prominently on the arms but not a full sleeve ... he just looks great.
8. Kareem Campbell
Another THPS original, I always happened to get a trick I had been working on in the game first with Kareem. I don't know why, but Kareem was my good luck charm in the game. I have no doubt this trend will continue in the remaster.
7. Rodney Mullen
Rodney joined for THPS 2 and has been a mainstay ever since. He is one of the few characters in the game that have an 8/10 in an attribute category -- in his case, Manual Balance and Spin -- so you can have a lot of fun shredding while controlling Rodney.
6. Chad Muska
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If I had to pick only one person to hang out with from the entire cast, it would be Chad Muska. He just seems so crazy and fun to be around. He also has two 8/10s in Ollie and Rail Balance, so that gives you a cool variance in terms of skaters for different levels. Chad's abilities come in handy in many parts of the game.
5. Tony Hawk
The game is literally named after him. Need I say more? Tony himself has said that he plays as himself in the game, which is delightful. He also gets challenged all the time -- and why wouldn't you when you have a game with your name on it? There are skaters with better stats in the game, but you got to have a healthy amount of respect on the titular character, no doubt.
4. Riley Hawk
My main motivation for putting Riley at No. 4 is so that he is ahead of his dad on the list. Now he can say "yeah I'm in a game that has my dad's name on it, but I beat him on an extremely official never disputed ESPN rankings list! Hah!"
3. Lizzie Armanto
Lizzie is a seven in air and hang time, the two stats that matter to me the most. So, for my playstyle, where I just want to be soaring through the skies as much as possible, Lizzie is my go to skater. I'm glad she's in the game because her debut was tony HAwk's Pro Skater 5, which wasn't the most revered title in the series and came right as the Tony Hawk/Activision relationship ended. Now with the hype around this remaster, more people will get to be properly introduced to some of these characters, including Lizzie.
2. Bucky Lasek
Bucky has the same stats in air and hang time as Lizzie, but he's an OG. He was in all five original THPS games, so I give him the nod in respect to where it all started. Probably a bit of nostalgia, too, because I played Bucky a great amount in the original two games.
1. Any upcoming DLC skaters
OK, I get it. This sounds like a cop-out. I didn't even pick a definitive No. 1 as my No. 1. But before you flame me on social media (@Arda to make it easy for you), hear me out.
Tony Hawk has a long and storied history with amazing, weird and downright confusing collabs. From Darth Maul and Jango Fett to Spider-Man and Wolverine, Doom Guy and even Shrek ... there have definitely been some outside the box and creative guest skaters. I spent hours rocking out to Metallica and skating around as James Hetfield in Tony Hawk's Pro Skater HD.
We have already had some fun reveals. For example, Jack Black as Officer Dick. We are 99.9% certain that there will be some great DLC surprises on the way -- any athlete or celebrity from any genre that grew up in the 90s will want in on this action. I imagine people's DMs and emails, from Tony Hawk to the developers, having flooded inboxes with requests from agents, managers and even the celebrities themselves.
Can I picture LeBron James, Master Chief, the Kool Aid Man, Amanda Nunes, Megan Rapinoe, Stephen A Smith, Ninja and The Rock in the game? Of course I can. Not because I think it's going to happen, but because it could happen. The sandbox is wide and expansive for collaboration and I'm here for it.
Catch a full interview I did with Tony Hawk about the game and its legacy (and maybe more new THPS games after this?!).