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Archive for the ‘PS2 Reviews’ Category

Review: ESPN X-Games Skateboarding (PS2)

Posted by rapaleeman on July 7, 2008

Well, so I really wanted a new skateboarding game, but realized there aren’t any.  So I flipped through my collection and found this gem.  So continueing my classic random reviews here is one for ESPN X-Games Skateboarding.

Everyone think back.  Way back.  Back when the PS2 has just come out.  It is brand new.  In your home.  Yearning for some skating goodness.

Yes friends it is the year 2001.  It’s August and your board (get it, sorry, no more puns).  That describes me at the time.  I was in college, and wanted a skateboarding game.  Well Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 3 was a long 2 weeks away so I picked this up.  Wow, was I surprised.

So having played every PSOne skating game (Thrasher: Skate and Destroy was my favorite from that time) I wanted something better.  Not just mechanically, but graphically.  Well I got something like that.

Sort of an amalgom of Thrasher and Tony Hawk, ESPN was something special.  First off the graphics were fantastic for the time.  It shouted ESPN from everything.  The overlays, commentator, and feel felt like I was watching the X-Games.  The other courses were ok, but I spent most of my time in the X-Games mode.  Something I wish skate. had today.  A mode where you only compete in the X-Games.  Having that as a minigame in skate. would be a great idea. 

Anyway, the skaters, boards, and environments looked great.  Especially for a PS2 title.  The skaters all looked real and had their appropriate advertising on along with their gear.  Nice touch.  Bob Burnquest and Colin McKay highlighted the crew, of relative unknowns.  Their moves looked good too. 

The soundtrack was hot.  12 tracks all good, though Linkin Park’s, “A Place For My Head” repeated a little too much.  The board sounds worked.  Same with the commentator.  Not annoying, just kinda there.  Like he should be.

Now the bad.  The game was stiff and slow to respond.  Again, this wasn’t Tony.  You had to plan your lines and runs.  I like this approach.  It made the game harder, but worth the trouble of learning.  Once I got the timing, the game was great. 

Too bad THPS3 came out two weeks later.  ESPN went into the pile and only emerged to stop the boredom yet again.  At least it is still fun and difficult now.  Great game just not perfect.



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