If you like to go underground and slide down the rails, we have found the game for you. Released more than a year and a half ago on devices that receive Apple Arcade, Skating city Released May 6 on PC, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, and next-gen consoles via backward compatibility. Developed by the studio Agens Games Based in Oslo, Norway and published by Snowman, the game takes us on a global road trip to try out the best possible routine in a 2.5D game with a sleek design. We allow ourselves to be tempted by this port full of promise, but what is it really worth?
Test conditions: We have traveled the 3 cities proposed by the title from top to bottom, unlocked the improvements and completed more than 60 challenges offered in the experience with 3 stars each, and a large part of the objectives proposed in infinite mode, to a total of 5:30 hours of gameplay on PlayStation 5 (via publisher-provided copy of PS4, therefore not including next-gen enhancements).
Grinder, always grinder
Who has not spent hours on the first work of the license? Tony Hawk’s professional skater ? Without pretending to want to overcome it, Skating city proposes to immerse ourselves in the controls of a young skater in the clutches of the best score in various cities around the world. After a short tutorial showing you the basics of the game’s controls, you land in Los Angeles, the first city to host your Street art. To keep going, you will have to complete a ton of challenges (almost 60 all categories combined per city) in order to accumulate enough points to buy the other available cities: Oslo and Barcelona.
Don’t expect any scenery in Skating city, There is not. You play as this young skater and that’s it. The game offers two game modes to choose from: an endless mode in which cities can be explored endlessly without interruptions and specific challenges. The challenges offered are of various types: racing against other skaters, policemen fleeing behind you, achieving the best possible score or even a sequence of several imposed figures.
Each challenge offers 3 different levels that grant you 3 rewards in the form of points (or money) that allow you to buy anecdotal cosmetic items, abilities and other special figures in an optional (and too hidden) but useful shop in particular for the abilities once . We found it.
What a challenge to test the three stars for each of these challenges and it is one of the strengths of the game. The game pushes you to improve yourself by promising to increase your reward if you manage to get an additional star in each challenge. Even if it means frustrating the player with challenges where escaping the police and achieving a very good score is sometimes a miracle.
Because be careful, despite its pastel appearance and apparent accessibility, Skating city However, it is demanding and will require a lot of learning before it is fully revealed to you. The drops will be numerous and will reinforce the realistic side of the title. In short, on PlayStation consoles, the joysticks will be used to make figures according to their inclination, the X key will allow you to accelerate and the triggers will allow you to bring a variation of your figures or other types of figures. And that’s it. However, we would have liked other keys to be used to make the figures.
We think in particular of the X button, used for acceleration but located right next to the right joystick, used for specific figures. It is not easy then to combine the two in order not to lose speed but also not to lose their imposed figures. After this initial lockdown, what a joy to achieve rotations, Ollies, since Pop shove it and others grind Y manuals in truly successful scenarios.
An artistic direction with small onions.
One of the strengths of Skating city lies in its pastel-colored cityscapes. The dynamic weather combined with the day / night cycle in the endless mode are really successful and immediately immerse the player. The animations of our character are also successful for a very solid set and we cannot complain about anything. The three cities represented have characteristic elements. Let us think in particular of the MACBA, the Museum of Contemporary Art of Barcelona, whose façade is accompanied by a long railing perfect for grind of legend.
If you want to immortalize some of your most beautiful footage, know that there is a recording mode, where you can adjust the zoom, slow motion, and other filters. These sequences, once captured, can be recorded and then shared or even sent to your “sponsors” to accumulate additional points. A great find that can sometimes be very expensive depending on the figures made. A location mode also allows you to place your player where you want in cities to reset a specific location if the requested figure was lost, for example. A welcome freedom that avoids all the frustration of a wasted moment.
Please note that in our tested version, Skating city worked very well, no errors, freeze or another alias while offering almost non-existent load times. Plus, the controls are responsive (most of the time) and promise dozens of different tricks to discover on your own based on your curiosity. To help you, a 30-figure guide is available on the menu that explains the beginnings of what you can achieve.
Overall, the in-game feel is very good. We like to play a few tens of minutes in this Skating city unpretentious between two important game sessions. But the observation remains the same as for other games in its category: we spin around quickly. With a lifespan of around 6-7h if you want to complete everything, the set will lend itself more to small relaxing sessions accompanied by an elegant, rhythmic and remarkable but without being exceptional soundtrack, rather than try hard where boredom can quickly point the tip of the nose.