Tony Hawk

It was not love at first sight. Tony thought of the skateboard as just another toy. Slowly over the next year though he began skating more and more. One weekend the mother of one of tony's friends took the neighborhood kids to the skate park. After that tony wanted to go every weekend he nagged his parents to drive him there. He started to get good around 11 and this was when he was able to start competitions.

Tony Hawk was 14 when he signed with the powell peralta professional team and starred in the famous bones briade videos. Though Hawk was an accomplished street skater, his reputation rested on his skills as “vert” (vertical) skater. During the 1980s and 1990s he dominated skateboarding competitions. In early 1980s, Hawk started birdhouse, a skateboarding and accessories manufacturing and blitzz, a skateboard product distributor. Soon after he quit competition for good.

In 1990 Tony married Cindy Dunbar, his long time girlfriend. They had a son, Riley, in 1992. After a few years, Cindy and Tony realized that married life wasn't working for them and divorced. But the remain friends and shared equally in Rileys life. By the time Riley was 4 years old, he to had fallen in love with skateboarding. He went on tour with his dad at the age of 6 not just to watch Tony. He skated in front of all the people who came to see Tony. Riley traveled all over the country and visited Australia, Japan, and Europe.

Tonys first big out of town contest for powell was in Jacksonville, Florida. He fell during his run and was so upset that he refused to talk to anybody afterwards. His skateboarding teacher stacy made a great coach and with his help and hours of practice, Tony improved even more quickly than he did before. Before one local skating contest in 1982, Stacy turned to Tony and asked him if he wanted to turn pro. Tony shrugged and said yes. He skated well. Despite his early skateboarding successes,Tony had a problem. He needed more weight to generate enough momentum to fly above the ramp.

1. Tony Hawk negotiated with two other game developers before signing on to Activision, one of which made the Thrasher game. When Activision approached him with a rough draft for THPS, Tony saw that they were on the right track. Tony signed on under the condition that he would be heavily involved in its creation. The game was released just over a year later.

2. About a year before striking a deal with Activision, Tony had two meetings with Midway, the makers of 720, the original skate arcade game of the ’80s. He unsuccessfully tried to convince the president of the company that a skate game was a good idea. Tony was sent on his way after being told, “There isn’t an audience for a skateboarding game.”

3. 411 issue #36 showed footage of Tony skating in a spandex body stocking with Ping-Pong balls connected to all the pertinent areas. This was a motion-capture suit, designed to assist in “mapping” his movements in order to create a digital rendition of his skating. Despite suffering through the humiliation of skating in an outfit reminiscent of something worn by an Ice Capades performer, it was all for naught. The process turned out to be too time consuming.

4. After ditching the motion-capture suit, the programmers referred to pre-existing video footage to animate the game-allowing them to give each featured skater his or her own style.

5. Although recent sales figures are not available for THPS 4, the last tally for the three previous games came in at more than 15 million sold. Activision’s early forecasts for sales were only at a few hundred thousand copies.

6. When asked how board sales compared to game sales, Tony said, “They don’t. I couldn’t have bought my house without THPS royalties.”

7. Tony landed his first 900 at the ’99 X Games, one month prior to the launch of THPS, causing sales to shoot through the roof.

8. When the THPS was released in Europe and Australia, Activision called it “Tony Hawk’s Skateboarding,” due to the fact that the word “skater” could have mislead youngsters into thinking the game was made for ice skaters.

9. When Tony plays the game, he admits he plays his own character, but only because he’s “Familiar with all of the button combos for the moves.” Apparently, his kids aren’t as familiar with their dad’s button combos. While Riley chooses the Geoff Rowley and Andrew Reynolds characters, the younger Spencer has taken to creating his own characters, with colorful hats and shoes.

10. During the development of THPS 3 in ’01, part of the game included terrorists taking over the airport and stirring up all kinds of trouble for Tony and company.



Created with images by tinou bao - "tony hawk" • djfpaagman - "Tony hawk" • Ben_Kerckx - "man people skating" • Ben_Kerckx - "skating sports people"

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