LT Panel
RT Panel
Just Visiting
Saturday | August 18, 2018
Popular Review Links:
Tony Hawk RIDE (X360 & PS3)

Tony Hawk RIDE (X360 & PS3)

Tony Hawk Pro Skater was a huge hit in the past and propelled the sport to a whole new gaming based audience. Activision have released the latest Tony Hawk game which instead of directly targeting EA’s Skate is geared to add a new dimension to the franchise by including a fancy skateboard peripheral. We are all for immersive and realistic sports games but with an asking price of $120 it needs to offer a lot of ‘game’ to be worth the cash.

Tony Hawk Ride is a very different game when you compare it to others in the franchise because you can no longer use a traditional game pad, you have to get off the sofa and use the new skateboard shaped controller. The board is covered in sensing equipment that detects which way you are moving and leaning and it does seem to be pretty tough into the deal, which is important as we would assume they will be getting a lot of abuse.

While most people might find the thought of playing a game with a Skateboard a little ‘off putting’ we can assume that the target audience would be the younger skating audience who can play when they don’t want to go outside (or can’t due to weather conditions). Unfortunately in reality it isn’t quite as impressive as the idea seems. On lowest setting the game does most of the hard work for you, players only need to decide when to jump and perform tricks. On higher levels the assists are disabled which unfortunately leaves us with a game which is too easy for most people or too difficult for everyone but the real life skaters (but more on this later). I have skated a lot in my younger years so I adapted quickly to it but a couple of my friends found the difficulty levels either much too easy or just too difficult.

On the easiest settings the game really does tend to play itself by you simply moving the board about however performing a specific move is more difficult than it should be. Turning it up to a harder level for finer control means sometimes the board seems hyper sensitive with the on screen character performing exaggerated motions when compared with what you are doing in the room.

Unfortunately the range of issues don’t just end with the sensitive board because we noticed quite a few problems with the collision detection not working the way it really should do. A few times parts of our Skaters went through objects which ruined the overall feeling of doing this ‘for real’ – which is the whole focus of this particular title. When this is combined with camera issues it really makes me feel that the game could have benefited from a few more months play testing and fine tuning.

The single player campaign has around 6 cities from throughout the world and it combines several different game play styles. You can race against time to win, or perform tricks and get as many points as possible within a time limit. There are also games you can play to unlock new equipment and pro skaters to choose from.

Sadly the presentation of the game is also rather confusing and sadly lacking – you don’t really seem to earn any real reward for progressing through the game. Sure, sometimes screens appear to tell you that you just won new gear but they don’t actually say what it is and why they decided to give you it. There are also a plethora of videos showing skaters performing tricks and telling you that you are doing a great job, but it all feels disjointed and ‘tacked on’.

The level design also is in need of an overhaul as the environments are rather boring and this is my biggest issue with the game as an overall product, the developers seem to not really have cared that much to immerse the gamers into something exciting and are instead relying on the board to be the main selling point. To make matters worse there really aren’t that many levels to play with either which is very disappointing.

Another key problem for me were the load times on both the Xbox 360 and the Playstation 3, they are painful to live with and when you look at the presentation, quality and nippy load times for something like Assassins Creed 2 you begin to wonder if the designers and coders were really paying attention during the development of TH: Ride. Shockingly the menus are full of advertisements which always leaves a sour taste in my mouth, I don’t mind it on websites or newspapers, but you don’t pay $120 to visit your favourite websites either.

I would love to get into some good points of the interface but if I told you that you had to get off the skateboard and find a traditional game pad to circumnavigate the menus would you feel happy about that? The Skateboard has a DPAD and face buttons on the side but they don’t seem to work in very many of the menus. Don’t ask me why not, I have no idea. They do work on the Wii, but I am not reviewing that version today so I will just leave it at that.

The multiplayer section of the game is also very disappointing because the load times ruin the fun – you can play with other people in the room but by the time the game loads between rounds and you find a game pad to get around the menus you are all just itching to do something else. Both PS3 and Xbox 360 versions have online options however the community is dead and it doesn’t take a massive amount of intelligence to figure out why, there is no reward for winning and players have very little interaction between each other. Up to four people can play however I failed to find four people online during my testing period.

We applaud the idea of giving the Tony Hawk franchise a new concept and focus, if it was handled right it could even have been a great game. As it stands however it has turned into an almost unmitigated disaster which could have been avoided with more playtesting, more development time, more content and most importantly, more care to the details in all areas. The board is actually well made and would add a lot to the genre, if it was used right and the coding was sorted. I would recommend you avoid this, unless you have a wad of cash burning a hole in your pocket.


Shocking in all areas.
Utterly uninspired.
Decent soundtrack.
Not a lot of content, no one is playing multiplayer and the board while well made just doesn’t work the way it should.

Maybe next time.

About Author

Stuart Davidson

It appears you have AdBlocking activated

Unfortunately AdBlockers interfere with the shopping cart process

To continue with the payment process can we ask you to

deactivate your AdBlocking plugin

or to whitelist this site. Then refresh the page

We thank you for your understanding

Hardwareheaven respect you right to employ plugins such as AdBlocker.
We would however ask you to consider whitelisting this site
We do not allow intrusive advertising and all our sponsors supply items
relevant to the content on the site.

Hardwareheaven Webmaster