Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 5
At E3, gamers got their first hands-on with the upcoming, old school-but-not-outdated Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 5, but what greeted them at Gamescom this week in Germany had an all new look to it. We talked briefly with one of the game's developers Robomodo (Disruptive Games is also on the project) about the 180 in the game's visual style.
When we first revealed the game earlier this year, some people didn't think the graphics were truly next gen. Robomodo CEO Josh Tsui, however, explains why the studio did it and that the change wasn't the result of any one moment, but rather "the next step in a design."
When did you make the decision to change the art style? Why was the decision made?
Josh Tsui: I wouldn't say there was a single decision, per se – this is the design we've been working toward internally for some time now. But as with everything else, it's an evolving process, and we've pushed the visual style forward in increments to balance it alongside other technical benchmarks and gameplay and multiplayer optimizations. So what you're seeing now is more the next step in a design rather than a totally new concept.
Why was this particular look chosen?
Our priority from the start has been to make sure Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 5 feels good to play. That means hitting 60 fps at 1080p, even when you're shredding with 20 people in the same session online. Once we knew we could maintain framerate with the new look – and that took a while – we fully implemented it. For us, it's fun and over the top in the way the original games were. We really want to drive home that playful energy of sharing a skatepark with a crowd of friends, and the current look of the game gets us there while balancing all the action you can pull off together at the same time.
What was the technical process to change the game's look?
A lot's gone into it, but we've definitely played with the lighting and pumped up the game's colors to add more detail to the experience. The game moves pretty fast, so we wanted to make sure effects like motion blur, depth of field, and outlining were at a place to help players focus on the most important elements onscreen at any given time.
Did the new look require any tweaking of collision or any of the gameplay?
Not really. If anything, it's the other way around, where our goal of keeping gameplay fun and fluid overall is what's driving the look and style of the experience.
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