Activision not bailing on Tony Hawk - Report

Publisher's CEO of publishing defends Shred's slow sales start and says the extreme sports legend has staying power on par with Michael Jordan.

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Last month it was revealed that Tony Hawk: Shred, the follow-up to the critically panned Ride that was promised to be "better," sold just 3,000 units in its debut week. That considered, publisher Activision isn't ready to bail out on Mr. 900.

Virtual Tony Hawk still believes he's number 1.
Virtual Tony Hawk still believes he's number 1.

Speaking with Industry Gamers, Activision's CEO of publishing, Eric Hirshberg, said it's too soon to deem Shred a failure. He said the company will market the title aggressively to children during the weeks remaining before Christmas.

"I think it's early to close the book on Tony Hawk: Shred, because we are marketing it to kids, and it is a great gift, and the gift-giving season has already begun," he said. "We're going to keep the pedal to the metal on that and continue to market through the holiday and hopefully we'll deliver some proponents."

Additionally, Hirshberg addressed the franchise's cover athlete. The executive expressed a belief that Tony Hawk is an icon on par, in terms of notoriety, with legendary basketball star Michael Jordan.

"The one question that I can answer, and remarkably so, is that Tony Hawk does really still have relevance and tremendous appeal for people," he said. "He is a lasting icon. He has that Michael Jordan-ish or Jordan-esque staying power, seemingly."

In related news, there have reportedly been layoffs at Robomodo, the Chicago-based development house behind Tony Hawk: Shred. According to sources, 30 to 60 staffers have been let go following Activision's decision to strip the independent studio of the Tony Hawk franchise.

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