Quit scoffing, mister. The Tony Hawk games have a damn good track record even when scaled down to Nintendo handhelds. And even if you didn't like last year's incline-oriented Downhill Jam, Tony Hawk's Proving Ground marks a return to form, offering a truly classic game of skate to the Nintendo DS.
Traditional Hawkers listen up, because the portable Proving Ground packs in everything that's made it great to be an armchair skater all these years. If you never cared for past versions' plot, analog controls, or the greatest sacrilege - getting off your board - then this is the one to get. That's right, classic mode makes a triumphant return to two minute glory. Oh, there's still a story mode, but it's less emphasized and text based so you can briskly skip to the real meat of the game with no load times. In other words, it's worth your time.
The branching goals found onnext-gen version are little more than just objectives of varying degrees here on the DS. Rigger has been reduced to occasional ramp placement, but a consistent meter will measure your affinity towards either Career or Hardcore progression. To be honest, we couldn't really tell the difference between the two. But we found them all fun, and thismeans you don't have to complete everything in order to advance.