We comprehensively reviewed Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 1+2 back at launch and found it to be a superb return to form for the Birdman, but now we're doing things a little different with its upcoming Xbox Series X and Xbox Series S upgrade, as there are quite a few things to talk about in regards to the improvements that have been made, as well as the unnecessarily confusing pricing structure which means most players won't get it for free, which is definitely a shame.
Let's start with the positives though. Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 1+2 now supports native 4K resolution at 60 frames per-second on Xbox Series X, along with various other visual improvements for things like textures and shadows. It's immediately noticeable compared to the standard Xbox One X version, with everything looking cleaner, crisper and more detailed. You can see specs of dirt on ramps and rails, the lighting feels more realistic in general, and reflections for the likes of puddles are now much more pronounced.
It looks really good, but we're actually even more partial to the optional 120FPS mode, which drops the resolution to 1080p, but feels like a significant boost in performance and responsiveness. Tony Hawk's games have always been twitchy, with rapid camera movements at all times, and so the constant transitions benefit heavily from that added smoothness, and make the standard 60FPS mode feel quite sluggish in comparison. We'd even go as far as to say this is probably the best use of 120 frames per-second on Xbox Series X so far.
It's all very positive, then, but outside of the presentation improvements, there's nothing else particularly new. Loading times are great, yes, but the same can be said of playing the Xbox One X version on Xbox Series X. You don't get any properly new characters, levels or features, and that's where the pricing structure rears its ugly head.
Simply put, if you don't own the Digital Deluxe Edition of Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 1+2 for Xbox One, the upgrade is an extra $10 for digital owners, and completely inaccessible to anyone who bought the physical disc. If you don't have a 120FPS display and you're just getting the upgrade for improved visuals at 4K, 60FPS, it's hard to justify paying the extra $10. We've seen superb free upgrades for the likes of Marvel's Avengers and even Activision's own Crash Bandicoot 4 recently, so the lack of a free upgrade here (for most players) is undoubtedly a disappointment.
But we'll leave that choice up to you. The game itself is still absolutely great, and has added minor updates to multiplayer and the ability to replay the career since launch, which were welcome additions. It's one of the best examples of a Tony Hawk's game in over 15 years, and while the next-gen upgrade is nice, the backwards compatible Xbox One version is also still really good, so you don't need to hand over any extra cash to enjoy it.