A lot of the people who got the Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 1 and 2 Collector’s Edition probably won’t ever put wheels on the skate deck because they don’t actually skate, but lack of talent didn’t stop one guy from gearing his special edition deck with electronics and the ability to self-kickflip, all controlled via a DualShock 4.
Activision reached out to James Hobson, aka The Hacksmith, to do a special episode of his “Make it Real” YouTube series, where he builds crazy and seemingly impossible objects and contraptions. In this episode, he takes the Collector’s Edition skate deck and not only makes it an electric self-driving skateboard, he makes it do its own kickflips. And to top it all off, he controls the entire rig via a DualShock 4 controller, even mapping the board’s kickflip to the same input in the game (Left + Square).
You can watch the full 15-minute episode below, including some failed (or TOO successful) attempts to get the board to flip using explosives, airbags, and even high-powered consumer-grade rockets (seen in the image above, deemed a touch too volatile for practical use). Eventually he lands on a dangerous-looking mousetrap-like contraption that perfectly flips the board under his feet.
Some skateboarding fans in the comments have pointed out that the Hacksmith does not actually do a kickflip; he does a heelflip. The distinction between the two is which way the board flips relative to the direction you are facing, or more to the point, which part of your feet you use to flip the board. A kickflip uses the front of the feet to “kick flip” the board around towards the skater, where a heelflip uses the heels to flip the board the opposite direction, away from the rider, with the heel the last part of the foot to leave the board. Because the board is simply designed to flip regardless of the rider, Hacksmitch technically created both a self-kickflipping and self-heelflipping skateboard, depending on which way he’s standing and/or the orientation of the board beneath his feet.
If you don’t want to go through the pain of learning to skateboard in real life or the “don’t try this at home” effort of building your own self-kickflipping skateboard, you can pick up Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 1 and 2 now to do bombastic tricks, insane combos, and crazy lines in-game that would make actual skaters envious. Our review of the revival of the 20-year-old classics called it “perfect,” praising the balance Vicarious Visions poured into both maintaining the feel of the original games and making it feel like a brand new game in 2020.
The classic revival is getting a lot of attention from celebrities and YouTube channels. Actor and musician Jack Black plays a secret character in Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 1 and 2, the series-staple Officer Dick, who can be seen harassing players in the School II level via golf cart. Black showed a behind-the-scenes look at becoming Officer Dick on his JablinskiGames YouTube channel. You can unlock him for yourself by completing all Create-a-Skater challenges, but it’s not going to be easy.
Would you ride an electric self-kickflipping (or heelflipping, whatever) skateboard controlled by a DualShock 4, or are you content to skate from the relative safety and comfort of your couch?
Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 1 and 2 is available now.