There are people out there who don’t play Tony Hawks Pro Skater like you and I. Where I’m content with getting the high score goals at every level, more serious players have pushed the boundaries of the series for years to earn millions (and sometimes billions) of points. With the release of Tony Hawks Pro Skater 1 + 2I reached out to one of the remaster’s more prolific high score achievers to learn her secrets.
We got our first taste Tony Hawks Pro Skater 1 + 2 through a pre-release demo that allowed players to try out the game in two-minute sessions at the warehouse level. While there wasn’t much for a goal-oriented gamer like me, scoring-minded players quickly set out to put together huge combos and get massive scores before the full game was even available. This is how I got to know prevzzy, whose videos took off on social media as the excitement for the remasters grew.
Prevzzy, reached by email, tells Kotaku that they started to pursue high scores in Tony Hawks Pro Skater 3rd. “When I realized that the more tricks you do in a combo, the more points you get, that quickly became my only goal in the game. This is mainly because I couldn’t understand any goal in the game that needed to be achieved because the game was only in English and I’m not a native speaker. I remember once getting a million points combination by going around the level in a combination. I think that was my very first high score. “
Prevzzy would move on at some point Tony Hawks American WastelandMeet several like-minded people via the online modes of this game. When shutting down the servers, the community switched to third-party alternatives like OpenSpy and THUG Pro, a popular mod that changes each level from previous entries in the franchise to the Tony Hawks Underground 2 Engine, complete with online game. After years of learning the art of highscoring, prevzzy released their first video in 2009.
“When I started playing online and came to terms with players a lot better than I did, I was just trying to copy everything they did,” prevzzy said. “I would also look for combo videos on YouTube and try to copy them. I was absolutely thrilled with how many points people got. To this day, I think that trying to copy lines and tricks from better players as best as possible is the best way to progress. After a while I finally got this kind of combos myself.
Tony Hawks Pro Skater High scores, prevzzy explained, are the result of careful planning. Instead of improvising like a real skater, highscore players focus on developing “lines” or paths through levels that allow them to continue combos indefinitely. These lines are optimized to collect as many tricks and multipliers as possible while keeping grinding and manual time to a minimum to avoid having to keep the balance bar, which often leads to long combos be destroyed.
I’ve always assumed that special moves – big tricks like the 900 that require building a special gauge and more complicated inputs – would form the basis for high score runs, but prevzzy said it doesn’t. Rotations are often more important than the actual tricks, as every 180 degree rotation increases the total score of a move. From there, the real thing is to squeeze as many tricks and twists into the airtime you can get and find a way back to the beginning of the line you created.
“In any case, your return route needs to be optimized so that you use as little grind and manual as possible,” added prevzzy. “You want it to be manageable for as long as possible. Therefore, nobody ever uses special manuals or special grinds in high score runs. If you really want to benefit from a dedicated manual or grind, you will likely have to hold it for around 20 seconds, which basically means you will be breaking your balance. In addition, spinning air specials could score the same number of points in about three seconds. “
As the newest game in the series Tony Hawks Pro Skater 1 + 2 has caught the attention of high score players with an interesting caveat that goes against the community’s own rules for landing combinations. Getting into the remaster leaderboards means landing your big combos while the high score scene has never really seen this as an important part of the process. Some of the greatest combos in history, like the 37-minute monster with 12.7 billion points, actually ended up with obliterations.
“It wasn’t about landing, it was about getting the absolute maximum that you can get out of the combo and so no one has ever thought of landing them on purpose,” prevzzy said. “Bail or landing essentially meant the same thing: not holding your combo. The only thing that would change was the color of your score at the bottom of the screen, but that wouldn’t make that score irrelevant. “
This is a good setting when trying to improve your scores.
“Even if you find yourself in a dire situation that requires a really risky move to keep your combo alive, there is always a chance that you will pull it off and your combo will continue,” prevzzy explained. “When trying to get higher combos, never land on purpose and always try to keep your combos from ending. This is the only way you can get used to adapting to random situations while maintaining your combo. “
Tony Hawks Pro Skater 1 + 2 contributed to an explosion of high score videos. Players like Bullet SiN, idunno, andyTHPS, and drthps regularly share their best runs, but more importantly, they also do a lot to teach new players how to develop lines and improve combos.
While the game’s online mode may be absent – especially pointed out during our conversation about missing features like text chat – the definition of core gameplay by developer Vicarious Visions means gamers new and old are getting back to the series, and high -Score Veterans do a lot of work to make sure they stick with it long after the official level goals are met. As always, it comes down to the love of the games rather than the potential for money to be won.
“I think most people will agree that it’s just for the best Tony Hawks Pro Skater since American wasteland“Said prevzzy.” I’m just very glad that my favorite game series is finally back to life. “