After Tony Hawk Pro Skater 4 came out, you could tell that there was a definite shift in development style and direction in the franchise. Starting with Underground, the Tony Hawk games began incorporating story into the campaigns. In my opinion, this was a major mistake. Part of what made the early Pro Skate games entertaining wasn't the story. It was the fact that you had a two minute clock to work with. When you first unlocked a level, you'd use that time to explore, figure out the place. Then you'd spend the next dozen or so attempts trying to clear as many goals as possible. So, following these guidelines, my wish is for Tony Hawk HD to incorporate that style of gameplay. Ditch the terrible story writing, nobody cares about that in skating games.
One of the best ways to make a reboot shine is to make it feel new and novel while still giving the old fogies a nostalgia trip. That way, the new content gets equated with the nostalgia of the old. Keep that sense of awe when we first unlocked Spider-Man. Keep up the crazy stunts to get the secret tapes. But at the same time, make us explore the areas we used to shred up. Make us stumble upon new areas. Once we get into that realm, we will want to explore. We will have that experience that we had when we were young and first trying out these games.
|Don't mess with me, I'm Spider-Man!|
When Mark Rosewater, head of R&D for Magic: The Gathering, created the Time Spiral block, he wanted to pay homage to what had come before. He wanted to recognize the good and bad of prior eras, and bring it all together. Once he had brought everything together, he iterated, and then innovated, on it. With Planar Chaos and Future Sight, he effectively created a Past, Present, and Future, scenario. That was his plan. He recognized what worked, and built upon it. And that, ladies and gentlemen, is what Activision needs to do with the mighty Bird-Man.