|System: DS, Wii||Review Rating Legend|
|Dev: Exient||1.0 - 1.9 = Avoid||4.0 - 4.4 = Great|
|Pub: Electronic Arts||2.0 - 2.4 = Poor||4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy|
|Release: Nov. 19, 2008||2.5 - 2.9 = Average||5.0 = The Best|
|Players: 1 (2 Online)||3.0 - 3.4 = Fair|
|ESRB Rating: Everyone||3.5 - 3.9 = Good|
However, perhaps the mode that adds the most replayability is "My Spot," in which you can design your own skate park using stock items, plus items you've unlocked. It's easy enough to use: just select a location with the stylus, touch an icon that looks like a plus sign, and pick out the item you want to place. There are plenty of items available, and plenty of space in which to place them. It's fun in a SimCity kind of way, and it's a blast to perform on your own creations.
Graphically, though, Skate It faces a problem common to many DS titles: the videos are about as close to photorealistic as the DS will ever manage (they were made using the awesome ACT Imagine video codec), but the actual world in which the game happens lacks detail. The character models are the worst; when we changed our guy into a girl in the creator mode, we had to look closely to see if it worked. The faces and bodies, while they're animated fluidly, have no semblance of personality whatsoever. The items in the environment look pretty bland, but thankfully, the images are never so poor as to distract from the gameplay or make it unclear what's what. Basically, you won't be running into things because you didn't see them, and you won't be running into things because you got caught up looking at the pretty scenery, either.
In terms of sound, the developers took advantage of EA's access to licensed tunes, sprucing things up with (guess!) hip-hop and modern hard rock. The playlist isn't as diverse as one would expect on, say, a Burnout game, but it fits the mood of the title, and even when you hear the same songs too much, it's not all that annoying. The sound effects are fine; they don't stand out as being particularly good, but they're not ridiculous or fake, either.
Again, skateboarding games aren't for everyone, and Skate It most definitely won't change that. Its hard realism makes it a fan-only pursuit, and its bland graphics similarly do little to entice newcomers. However, this is a great opportunity for boarders and the gamers who love them to learn an innovative control scheme, pull off some tricks, and design their dream skate parks.
CCC Freelance Writer