So it's come to this already? Barely six months into the Wii's life span and we're already seeing it lose one of its exclusive games, Tony Hawk's Downhill Jam. To a last-gen console, no less. But PS2 owners should be happy, especially given the barebones version of Tony Hawk Project 8 it recieved last fall. After all, every other game gets spin-offs, so why not the Birdman, right?
Even though the main series left the realm of anything resembling a simulation years ago, this off-shoot provides a far more arcade style skating experience, featuring short levels based on hyper-stylized versions of San Francisco and Machu Pitcho, as well selectable boards that enhance abilites instead of stats applied to the individual player.
In case you missed Downhill Jam on the Wii, gone are the real-world pro-skaters, thin plots and open-ended environments of previous Hawks. Instead, racing down hills at breakneck speed is the name of the game, with a little old fashioned Road Rash fisticuffs thrown in for good measure. Tricks are divvied out in the same way you remember them; grabs, flips, grinds and special moves, etc. Except this go round the Manual has tagged out to allow the entrance of the new Boost button, which can be executed when the "Zone Bone" meter reaches burning point. And the similarities to SSX don't end there. There's also a slammin' soundtrack and a fictional cast of characters so full of obnoxious 'tude you'll yearn for the heyday of master thespian, Bam Margera.