Platform: Gameboy Advance
Developer: Vicarious Visions
ESRB: E (Everyone)
Released: Q1 2002
Support AE! Buy Games Here:
Be notified of site updates. Sign-up for the Newsletter sent out twice weekly.
Enter E-Mail Address Below:
Hawk's Pro Skater 3
up to some of the best on the GBA
with the console version will need to get comfortable with
"Even if you already own the GBA version of THPS2 go out and buy this terrific title that more than does justice to the long lineage of Pro Skating greatness that has preceded it."
It's a tough enough task for GameBoy Advance software developers to port over 128-bit console games to the Nintendo handheld. It's even more difficult when the game in question is a stellar mega-hit like Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 3 (THPS3). And it's yet even more of a challenge when the development team that created the original passes over the creative reigns to another software house to handle the conversion. But don't fret THPS fans. While Neversoft has been the developers of the THPS series since its inception in the home console realm, Vicarious Visions gives all GBA gamers a worthy successor to its remarkable version of THPS2 on the GBA. They continue the proud tradition of another excellent title in the Hawk series, which has quickly become in the world of videogames one of today's best in any genre on any system.
Vicarious Visions gives a good attention-to-details look to the game, and as it did in THPS2 for the GBA manages to squeeze out some sweet 3D-appearing visuals in the 2D GBA world. Not as colorfully vibrant as its console doppelganger, the world of THPS3 on the GBA still gives off a shiny gleam of graphical excellence that stretches the rendering power of the portable Nintendo machine. Skaters have a little jagged edginess to them, almost along the lines of what you would expect from a PlayStation One game, basically average compared to some of the GBA's best titles and not as polished as THPS3's levels. To compensate for a limited camera, some of the obstacles and ramps have a transparency effect so you can see where your skater is. The game pulls this effect off nicely, surprisingly not complicating the gameplay.
Two less levels are available in the game than turn up in the console
version (three less from the Xbox), missing the Cruise Ship, Skater
Island and the Oil Rig from the Xbox version. The levels that do appear
however are large, giving a lot of room to explore considering the more
restrictive GBA format. They aren't exact copies of the console levels,
which just isn't feasible. Can you imagine the impossible undertaking it
would be for Vicarious Visions to try and match the neon-filled Tokyo
level on the GBA? Instead, what we GBA faithful get is a good
representation of the elements that make the creative console levels so
much fun. As in the console version, there are interactive obstacles in
the form of cars and pedestrians throughout each level to avoid if you
want to have a successful skate session.
multiplayer is much better than its console counterparts (the Xbox
especially) simply because each of the up to four players have their
very own screen to themselves, which makes playing much easier. This is
technically available with an Xbox multiplayer game, but only if each
player has not only their own Xbox through the system link but their own
television or monitor. Which isn't very practical without even
mentioning the large amount of money needed to be spent on four Xboxes,
four televisions or monitors, and four copies of the game. With one copy
of the game, four GBAs and one GBA game link cable you can get a great
(and affordable) handheld multiplayer game going. As usual, you have all
the more-than-one player selections that THPS is famous for: Trick
Attack, H-O-R-S-E, King of the Hill, or Tag. If you want to go it alone,
the career mode has been overhauled, including more character-specific
goals that vary from skater to skater, depending on their skating style.
Create-A-Skater is still around if you don't choose one of the 13
included pros. (Bob Burnquist leaves this year, replaced by Bam Margera
of MTV's Jackass fame).
(April 15, 2002)
Search for Related Topics: