Lights out - guerrilla radio!
January 30, 2017 5:27 PM   Subscribe

Estimating strictly by the fact that I had nothing but free time as a teen, THPS 1 & 2 are the video games I have probably put the most number of hours into, combined.

Also I just today asked a friend to pick up a PSP for me so I can, in part, play THPS on it because the PS3 HD port is ... not great about so many things.

Also good to know Tony Hawk and I have the same high score strategy.
posted by griphus at 6:04 PM on January 30, 2017 [1 favorite]

As a friend and I joked somewhere around THPS3, it was gonna take a downturn when you started to have "bosses" to kill at the end of stages, and I believe they did actually have something like that. The PC versions of Playstation game controllers were awful, so this is also the game that got me to buy a weird Chinese USB to chunky-plug-thing adapter for my Windows PC so I could use a DualShock. I wore THPS2&3 out. But when...

How big of a competition was EA’s Skate series?
It was definitely a competition and it’s a really good game, so that accelerated the decline of it all.

You could say that. I just played Skate 2 again for a couple months straight within the last 6mos. It's still so great. I still have my THPS games and boxes somewhere in the back of a closet.
posted by rhizome at 6:26 PM on January 30, 2017 [1 favorite]

Sadly no mention of California Games.
posted by rhizome at 6:29 PM on January 30, 2017 [8 favorites]

Nice title. All the songs from the soundtrack take me right back to the game. When we were in college, my then-boyfriend and I would play horse obsessively (where one player does a trick, and then the second player has to beat the first player's score with one trick), but we felt that "horse" made too short of a competition, so we played mongoose instead.

Also, I did in fact ask him, since he was a Rage Against the Machine fan and I was not, why the gorillas had a radio, and why they had to listen to it in the dark. He mocked me slightly for it, but I'll tell you what, I never let him forget about how neither he nor they could pronounce "guerrilla" properly.
posted by chainsofreedom at 6:44 PM on January 30, 2017 [2 favorites]

I still can't quite get the hang of Tony Hawks nor its imitators but I definitely respect the way it invented/popularised a whole genre, just as Pac-Man, Space Invaders, Tetris, Street Fighter, etc did. Expressive play is an important element in games for me and the skateboarding genre is pretty much all about that writ large.
posted by comealongpole at 8:24 PM on January 30, 2017 [2 favorites]

Wait, is this site actually called Jenkem? Ha!
posted by comealongpole at 8:27 PM on January 30, 2017 [5 favorites]

I literally lived most of my life less than 200 yards from Tony Hawk's residence. Never played the games or skated though.
posted by Drumhellz at 10:35 PM on January 30, 2017

I've got THPS 2 installed on an old iPod Touch. Every couple of years I feel the need to play the whole thing through - every skater, every level 100%

The best bit comes around the second contest level, when you've maxed out your skills and you can start spending money buying daft "special" tricks.

Elite is the only other game I've spent so much time playing... Or maybe Ninjatown.

My wife really doesn't understand, but my son and nephew think I'm super gnarly.
posted by ZipRibbons at 12:47 AM on January 31, 2017 [3 favorites]

Drumhellz: "I literally lived most of my life less than 200 yards from Tony Hawk's residence. Never played the games or skated though."

And I used to have a friend when I lived in Santa Barbara that dated him. Of course, she pretty much dated everyone vaguely famous, but they were sort of an item, for a while. This was right before his pro career really started off.
posted by Samizdata at 4:49 AM on January 31, 2017 [1 favorite]

I was one of those kids in the early 2000s - too uncoordinated to skate in real life but happy to do it at home via Playstation controller. These games made me a lifelong lover of punk music.
posted by capricorn at 8:37 AM on January 31, 2017 [2 favorites]

Man, that was a great game. The controls were great, the secrets were everywhere and the learning curve was perfect. I remember playing it in my college days which was the best time to have a game with depth like this.

To me it always felt like the spiritual successor of Skate or Die (for the C64) from the attitude to the upgrades to the focus on music, though most of that probably came directly from skateboarding culture.
posted by lubujackson at 10:06 AM on January 31, 2017 [2 favorites]

That was a pretty nostalgic trip back. Friends and I played the hell of out of THPS 1 and 2 (after that, our video game playing declined a bit or moved to other games, notably GTA3). Good times.

It did lead to spending one summer of trying out skateboarding with an old wooden board that my dad must have bought at a garage sale, and I gave up after from the sheer difficulty of it, accomplishing no more than perhaps an ollie.

The article's comments are tolerable and includes an anecdote of the increased exposure of Burnside (an informal skate park in Portland); I never realized that Burnside was, to my understanding from the comment, DIY and without any city authorization.
posted by fizzix at 10:10 AM on January 31, 2017

Loved this game so much. Friends and I played it when we were supposed to be in class in my first and second year of university, so it is one of those skills that I (used to) really surprise people with - I would classify it as pretty much the only video game I'm good at (okay, maybe also DDR, which is my other random surprising skill).

I tried the Wii version and the controls were so difficult that I ended up getting rid of it really quickly afterwards. I was disappointed... and now I kinda want the originals for playstation so I can play them again. Great games.
posted by urbanlenny at 10:27 AM on January 31, 2017

That THPS HD game from 2013 was sure crappy, wasn't it? I was looking forward to it big time and bought it the day it came out. Absolute trash, especially in a post-Skate marketplace. (There are recent rumors of Skate 4 by the way.)

Haven't played THPS 5 but it is full of bugs and has a rating in the mid-20s on Metacritic.

For my money, the best way to play is THPS 2x for the original Xbox (which is also playable via backwards compatibity on the 360.) THPS PS1 is a little too low-res for me.
posted by porn in the woods at 5:47 PM on January 31, 2017

Skate 4 has to be getting into Level Boss territory. I don't think they can improve the mechanics of the game, so what's left?
posted by rhizome at 6:10 PM on January 31, 2017 [1 favorite]

Tony Hawk was the game that finally made me buckle and buy a PlayStation. (GTA3 was what made me get a PS2).
posted by old_growler at 6:35 PM on January 31, 2017

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