Tony Hawk (professional skater) and Michelle Bresaw (Activision) were the keynote speakers at the Esports BAR+ Americas 2020 event. Tony and Michelle discussed the future landscape of skating and esports, and made a special announcement regarding upcoming DLC content for Tony Hawk Pro Skater 1 & 2 Remaster.
When asked about esports and the Tony Hawk Pro Skater (THPS) series of games, Tony exclaimed: “We’ve finally come of age, and it’s finally a possibility”.
Tony shared his excitement about seeing the online community for THPS sharing their scores and best plays online. Tony sees the opportunity for THPS games to be part of the esports community.
“…we’ve lined it up to be part of the esports community, and something that will transcend more competition and people getting into it”, Tony stated.
Tony shared that he has been enjoying jumping in on Twitch streams over the last few weeks, and he can see how the reach of games has changed.
Michelle discussed that there is a lot of community interest in developing esports leagues for THPS.
“We’ve been digging into Reddit and we’ve actually found that there are some fans that are already starting to think about kicking off their own pro-skater league.” She continued, “This game has all the right components for an esport … it’s so watchable and enjoyable”.
Michelle and the team at Activision will be looking to support those communities to help the grassroots growth of the esports scene.
Tony also added that THPS was one of the first online games on console. He is excited at the continued opportunity to support the online THPS community.
When speaking about the next generation of skaters, Tony said he hopes the game “…inspires a new generation to skate.” Tony sees the inclusion of skating as a sport at the Tokyo Olympic Games, and the release of his game, as instigators to encourage more kids to pick up a skateboard and hit the skate park.
Tony discussed an upcoming DLC for THPS and while all details aren’t available yet, Activision have partnered with The Skatepark Project for it’s release. The DLC will benefit the foundation in some way, however we will have to wait for the official announcement from Activision sometime soon.
The Skatepark Project (formerly known as the Tony Hawk Foundation) helps to develop skateparks across the globe. For 18 years the foundation has helped with fundraising, and cutting red tape, to help build skate facilities.
Tony shared that he would love to see all the previous THPS games remastered, but is incredibly excited to see the game engine used to create a new entry in the series.
The Esports BAR+ Americas 2020 conference continues until the 25th of September. You can still join the event to watch panels with esports experts live and to join scheduled networking events by signing up on the Esports BAR+ Americas website.