Ranting While Playing: Tony Hawk’s American Wasteland


I’m really amazed by how ugly some of the early xbox games were.  Did they forget that this was a new, more powerful console?  If you’re going to use the same polygons, fine, but you could at least render the textures properly.  There’s just no excuse for pixelated faces in this generation.

Why does every character other than me have the same skateboard?  And why does said skateboard have the name of the game on it?

It’s really shocking just how rarely the subtitles match up with what people say.

So the art style of the game is the girl’s sketching? But it pops up everywhere…including photographs! My head hurts just thinking about how that could make any sense at all.

Bikes are the spawn of the devil.  The idea of changing the entire control scheme just for a minor vehicle is moronic and half the time the controls are completely unresponsive.  There’s a challenge where Matt Hoffman is going back and forth on a half pipe with a skateboard doing tricks where you’re expected to do five different tricks while flying over his head on either side.  The game doesn’t give you access a list of bike tricks, so I sure hope you memorized at least five.  They’re nowhere nearly as simple to “make up” as those on a skateboard.  You’re pretty much guaranteed to fall several times, which makes you completely lose track of him as he’s going back and forth so you have to stop completely and waste time until you can line yourself up with him again.  Just to make things worse 90% of the time when you actually do a trick over his head the game doesn’t bother noticing.  This is all a perfect example of why games shouldn’t include half-assed, tacked on gimmicks.

Classic Mode is great fun.  It really reminds me of why I liked the THPS series in the first place.  It’s too bad that it’s incredibly short.  There’s six levels that each take about 10-20 minutes to complete.

THAW has a horrible tendency of not telling you things.  You can hold down ‘A’ to maintain the speed of your manual?  That would have been useful information before those 30 attempts to climb that hill for a gap!

To get the final achievement you need to find all 400+ gaps in the game.  That takes so long compared to the rest of the game it’s almost comical.  I was hoping to finish the game before Rock Band 3 comes out, but fuck it.  It’s much to tedious to do all at once.  This on will be sitting in the backlog for a few weeks before I look at it again.

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