Review by Decimor

Reviewed: 01/06/02 | Updated: 01/06/02

Great game with Great Drawbacks

Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 3 is a great game with great drawbacks.

I'll tell you right off the bat, if you're a die hard THPS fan, the decision is completely your's to make if you're gonna buy it or not. I've read many a review saying buy it or don't buy it. I hate it. I don't know if it's just me or someone else thinks it too but this is an unbiased review of THPS 3. I'm not going to tell you to buy it, I'm not telling you not to buy it. All I'm doing is merely giving my opinion and what I have observed during the game. Well time to stop wasting time here's the review.

Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 3 is a game that is really beauty in the eye of the beholder. Although the game has a great many drawbacks it will still be more than attractive for those of you who love skating games. I'll admit that in my eye's it's not as good as the first 2 but it's still a great game. I honestly think that Neversoft made a mistake letting Shaba Games develop THPS 3. With the way the first 2 hit I was very suprised the way this one impacted me. Although I haven't played any other of Shaba's games, I can honestly say that I certainly wouldn't rent another one of 'em. I'm not dissin' Shaba. I'm fairly certain that Shaba makes good games. What I am saying is that Shaba didn't use a lot of common sense when making this game. In my opinion the first thing they should have done is incorporated Neversoft's programming code into their graphics. The first 2 THPS games blew the eyes out of my head with graphics. Didn't happen this time. Although the graphics aren't bad and are actually far from it, they could have been better. I don't know if Shaba wanted to say, ''HA! We put in our own code and look how good it is!'' or what but they certainly didn't do as good a job as they could've. Who knows. Maybe they were scrunched for time. No matter what the cause it didn't come out as good as neversoft had intended it to. Well now I'll give you a quick summary of how I think the graphics are in this game. Like I said earlier this is just my opinion.

Graphics: 6/10
The reason I'm giving this a six outta ten is not because the graphics were bad and in fact they were very good. But the graphics just aren't as good as they could have been and honestly I don't think Shaba put in any real effort to meet or exceed the standards set by the earlier THPS games. One experience I've had with the graphics is I was riding the edge of the pool in Suburbia and my dude got stuck and all that happened was my shadow bounced all over the screen.

Well if you've made it thus far through my review then you will probably go the rest of the way. Now I will give my opinion on the gameplay.

The gameplay in THPS 3 are certainly not up to standard to what the others where. I was very suprised when I started the game for the first time and one my very first run I must have completed at least half of the level. Now I am a well established player in the THPS games but this is ridiculous. The game's simplicity is beyond understanding. For a game that even started to get developed by Neversoft Shaba did a terrible job. The level design almost threw me out of my seat (in a bad way). When I took my first look at the Foundry level I was like, ''What is this?'' I decided to press on and see what the rest of the level looked like. I was apalled. Now after a while the level started to grow on me and I learned to tolerate it but it's still bread crumbs compared to the first levels of the other two THPS games. Although I will admit the Hanger in THPS 2 wasn't as good as the Warehouse in the first THPS, I still hold it in higher regard of many of the levels in the third THPS. Another thing that I though Shaba really screwed up on was taking out a school level. In the first 2 games there were school levels that were huge and really awesome. What do I get for a school level? Los Angeles. Not that I have a problem with that I was just really disappointed. The competition levels on the game were terrible when I remembered what they were like in the first 2 thps games. I remember free skating for hours on the chicago level of an earlier thps game. Although the skater island level was still pretty good rio de janiero and tokyo just flat sucked. Especially the lights in Tokyo. The goals in the game were also a let down. Of course there were the score goals and collect s-k-a-t-e, find the secret tape and 100% goals, cash, etc. But when it came to the others I was apalled once more. The most annoying of which was snag the flags in the airport level. I was so frustrated I wanted to hurl my controller at the tv and smash the game. Yea that's how annoying this game can get. The tricks were also quite annoying. In the first two THPS games, the tricks looked really cool and you could pull them off quickly. Not so in this game. I was shocked when I learned the disappearance of the classic indy trick that i so dearly loved in the earlier THPS's. Many of the tricks were also misleading. One is the One Foot Japan. That trick has ruined so many of my 100k+ combos it's not even funny. They certainly took their time with the trick speed on this game. I also didn't like the fact where you earned the stats n decks through the levels instead of earning cash to buy them. I was very disappointed. The cash aspect added a bit of challenge and forced you to plan and budget for stats, decks and tricks. Not so In this one. You just earned the stats n the level which really annoyed me because you could only get 5 when back in the other THPS's you could get 6 or 7 out of 1 level.

Gameplay: 8/10
I know a big rating for the slamming that I just gave above but you also have to realize that overall the gameplay was great. Sure it was annoying at times but overall it's really sweet. However I found it disconcerting when I can beat this game in an hour starting from scratch with Mr. Hawk(one of the worse players in the game in my opinion. His ollie is a minor 2 and it is very difficult to get it above 4 within the first level and thats only focusing on ollie as your stat increase.

Well I guess now you're thinking ''Ok this guy has some good points but he's starting to ramble.''
I'm gonna fix that. The fact is, this is a review that's intended to get my full opinion out to the world.

Now I'll talk about the sound in this game. The soundtrack was horrible and terribly catchy. There were only 2 tracks that I liked and thankfully alien ant farm was one of them. The other was that gambling man song. Otherwise I couldn't stand it. The one I despised the most was that hygiene song. It was stuck in my head the first time and kept me awake when I was trying to sleep when that ''Gotta wash you ___ if ya must, gotta wash yo hands if you must...'' going in my head was about to the point where I was gonna call a nut clinic for admission. Thankfully it was 4 in the morning and I was so tired I finally fell asleep. Of course this did nothing for me the next day. The sound effects I though were very appropriate though. Except for that grunt when you fell. If I had fallen on my nuts when my board slid out from under me while doing a lipslide I would say a lot more than ''ungh''.

So you see, I give the sound a 3/10. The reason it gets such a high rating is because it had that alien ant farm song in it.

Controls, don't need much of an opinion. It was basically the same as the last 2 games except occasionally it would do a nosegrab when i wanted to one foot japan. I'll let you judge the controls for yourselves.

Well that pretty much sums it up. I know I haven't mentioned much positive things about the game in this review because all the positive things to say about it you would also say exactly the same for the last two games. I'll let you find out for yourself what good things and bad things there are in this game. Anyway what I would do instead of jumping out and buying it is first renting the game and then deciding if it's worthy of your 40 bucks(that's what it is at wal-mart anyway). Thanks for reading.
Although I can't post my email address if you want to comment on this review please feel free to do so. Hehe thanks.

Rating:   3.5 - Good

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