Tony Hawk's Pro Skater Let Its Stars Pretend They Were Superman
Rodney Mullen, Chad Muska, and Bucky Lasek look back on how they became household names after Tony Hawk's Pro Skater became a smash hit series.
Tony Hawk's Pro Skater made its PlayStation debut more than 20 years ago, and for skateboarding legends such as Rodney Mullen and Chad Muska, they can still recall just how influential the Neversoft game series was on their careers at the time.
"They had to put me on top of a van because it was so intense," Rodney Mullen said to The Verge about the fan response that he received after appearing in Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 2. "It was a sea of people — around me. And although I had a strong name from all of those years prior, this was unlike anything I had ever seen. That was my first taste of it, and it just went on. I could not believe the exposure the game gave to me."
Mullen wasn't the only skateboarder whose profile received a massive boost after appearing in one of the first two games, as icons of the era such as Chad Muska and Bucky Lasek also commented on how their lives changed after the original game became a pop culture phenomenon.
"I just remember initially it sounding surreal to me, especially then, that skateboarding was going to be in a video game that would be available on consoles across the world," said Muska.
"I can't say I imagined it blowing up as big as it did," Lasek added. "But I could definitely see that we were on to something. Overnight, it was a household name. I was a household name. And everybody else in that game became household names because of that."
Mullen, Muska and Lasek will be just some of the skateboarding superstars who'll be shredding up a storm when Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 1 + 2 launches on September 4 for PS4, Xbox One, and PC. Not just a faithful remaster of the original two games, Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 1 + 2 includes its original soundtracks, which is further enhanced by 37 new songs that feature rap, punk rock and ska heavyweights.
Tony Hawk's Pro Skater wasn't Mullen's only starring role in a video game, as he also appeared in Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon: Breakpoint as tech entrepreneur Jace Skell.
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