When we heard the Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 1 + 2 remaster would be hitting shelves in September, we knew we’d be in for one heck of a flashback. Our early hands-on with the Warehouse demo confirms that everything we loved about the original titles are back in full force. (Just try not to melt into a puddle of gooey nostalgia when Goldfinger’s “Superman” soundtracks your first noseslide). Interestingly, though, developers Vicarious Visions revealed to OGN that the game features one major change: Every character in the game will know that the Iraq War happened.
“Obviously, we wanted to do justice replicating all the amazing details that make the original so beloved, but we also knew we wanted to mix things up by making sure in-game characters like Bob Burnquist, Kareem Campbell, and Tony Hawk are all aware of the United State’s decision to invade Iraq in 2003,” said senior developer Christian Santos, describing the agonizing hours spent to make sure each character model reflects the grim realities of an eight-year invasion with unclear goals that left half a million Iraqis dead. “Officer Dick is back as an unlockable, too. We spent so much time getting the slump in his stance just right to show how—even though he’s ollying and grinding his way through kickass levels such as Roswell—his faith in national institutions has been completely shattered from the sustained campaign of lies about Saddam Hussein’s possession of weapons of mass destruction.”
“You can see it in these characters’ eyes: These are skateboarders living in a world where America’s role on the world stage has become deeply ambiguous,” he continued.
Going on to explain that his team had paid painstaking of recreating fan-favorite levels like New York City, Santos stressed that the remake took liberties only when strictly necessary such as when skaters grind toward the September 11th Memorial and spontaneously shout lines like, “How the hell did this invasion even factor into the War on Terror?” and, “4,424 American soldiers dead—do Rumsfeld or Rice even care?” and, “Skateboarding just doesn’t feel the same in a post-Iraq War age.”
Welp, color us impressed. We already couldn’t wait to manual our way around some of our favorite skateboarding levels of all time. But it sounds like Vicarious Visions has given this remake just the dash of spice to make us even more intrigued. Rock on, gamers!