Hands-onTony Hawk's Pro Skater 4

Activision debuts the San Francisco level of its upcoming skateboarding game.

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Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 4
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Activision stopped by the GameSpot offices today to show us an updated build of Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 4 on the GameCube, Xbox, and PlayStation 2. All three versions appear to be roughly at the same point in development, and at this stage, all look and play nearly identically. This version contained the college level that we previously reported on, as well as a new level based on San Francisco.

The game features a totally redesigned career mode, one that takes away the standard two-minute time limit and instead applies time limits as you discover and start goals. Level goals are hidden in the new game, and some goals appear on the level only after certain previous goals have been completed. Also, the game will have multiple tiers of goals. Completing all of a level's amateur goals will unlock a pro challenge. Each skater will have a different pro challenge that is suited to fit that skater's career. The pro challenge is designed to be much more difficult than the standard goals. One of them will have a skater moving around to different parts of the level, doing a specific trick on a piece of scenery, all within a certain time limit. Once this challenge has been completed, a new set of pro goals will open up on the level.

The twist in Tony Hawk 4 is that you won't have to complete every goal with every single skater. Outside of the pro challenge, completed goals are counted so you could conceivably go through the game once with one skater, then go back and complete the pro challenges with every other skater to complete everything the game has to offer.

The San Francisco level featured the same type of goal structure as the rest of the game, though it didn't seem to be as beginner-focused as the first set of goals in the college level seemed to be. In San Francisco, you'll have to skate around and find five packages, save a man from four hungry seals, manual all the way down a pier, and of course, accomplish the standard score and spelling goals. Portions of the level's look and design are inspired by Fisherman's Wharf.

Activision still isn't talking about any online plans for the game, beyond reminding us that the PlayStation 2 version had online support back at E3. Also, other details, such as the skater list and soundtrack info, are still up in the air. We'll have more details on the game soon.

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