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Ever since I saw an incredible world record run of Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 3 a few years back, I’ve been absolutely entranced by the skill required to speed run these games. I have quite a bit of nostalgia for the series as well, as both Pro Skater and Tony Hawk’s Underground were two of my favorite franchises growing up. The highly skilled speedrunner Guished absolutely tore it up during their performance at SGDQ 2017, so let’s continue our Games Done Quick marathon coverage with some skateboarding action!
Game: Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 2
Category: All Goals and Golds
Let The Games Begin
In the image below, you can see Guished’s character choice as he starts up his assault on Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 2. With a great collection of skaters (each with different stats) to choose from, Guished picks out Rodney Mullen. Due to his high speed and low air stats, Rodney’s loadout lets Guished build up speed while remaining in the air for a minimal amount of time.
The first level, Hangar, is arguably the most open in terms of choosing your route. Conversely, it’s also the most compact, stacking multiple objectives in a small overall map size. Due to this, Guished has some wiggle room to take objectives in a comfortable order while maintaining a breakneck speed. Right from the get-go, it’s obvious that Guished has a hand for Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 2.
Stat Allocation and Overall Strategy
Since Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 2 is such a quick game, there’s not too much moment-t0-moment commentary to be had. Everything flies by in a spectacular fashion, as Guished completes objectives left and right with ease. It’s something that is well worth the watch, so I highly recommend checking out the full speedrun.
For the most part, Guished upgrades his speed and ollie stats as he goes into the second level, School II. This allows him to hop higher without floating in the air, something caused by a high air stat. As he aims for gold medal scores (which require hefty amounts of points), Guished pulls off lengthy combo streams time and time again. The trick to maximizing combos is to land them with a “perfect” rating, which nets an approximate 50% bonus to your point reward. School II gives Guished a run for his money though, as he just barely finishes all of the phase one goals as the in-game timer lands on zero.
As Guished wraps up the New York City level, he uses the “retry run” option in the pause menu to warp himself closer to an objective. In addition to quicker transportation, “retrying” a run resets the point values for all tricks, restoring them to their full potential. This allows Guished to clear trick competitions without waiting for the full timer to expire.
Pro Skater Style
Most of this speedrun is pure mechanical skill and it’s something that’s impressive to watch. Like most of the runs I’ve covered at this year’s SGDQ, the theme seems to be skill over glitches (but I’m sure that’ll change as the week continues). Venice Beach, which is considered the most difficult level in the game, shows just how important conserving speed is. Guished takes a big time loss here, as he loses momentum and gets stuck on some stairs. This forces him to redo two lengthy objectives.
This gave me some very brief time to take in Venice Beach for what it is, a great summary of the Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater style. One objective in particular encapsulates my feelings and nostalgia completely; performing ollies over Ollie the Bum.
Venice Beach dissolves into Philadelphia, which I’ll admit isn’t one of my favorite Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 2 levels. The final area is another trick competition, which while impressive, doesn’t offer anything of insane note. However, Guished does pull off a massive combo in Philadelphia that puts my best combo efforts to shame.
Guished wraps up his magnificent display of tricks and skill in 16:26, a very impressive time when you consider he completed the game with 100% completion.
With the extra time left over, Guished shows us an entertaining glitch that involves fiddling with the replay feature on the main menu. By executing a few commands in the replay menu and then re-entering the career mode, the game gets quite confused. Guished picks Bob Burnquist instead of Rodney Mullen (in terms of professional skaters, I’m a Mullen fan myself), but this is has nothing to due with stats.
For some unknown reason, Bob Burnquist makes like a rocket ship and gains inhuman speed. This glitches the game out, sending Bob into a state of what I can only describe as “dimension tearing”, in which his character model gets stretched a billion ways every second. This replay glitch seems to act differently depending on the character being played as, and in a sort of poetic finality, Guished intentionally crashes the game by throwing Tony Hawk himself through a pane of glass. Oh, what a time for speed runs.
Final Time: 16:26