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Skate – my new favourite game

[intro]Enough with the shooting already. Let's skate.[/intro]My real-life skating days petered out when I suffered a broken wrist as a result of a b

[intro]Enough with the shooting already. Let’s skate.[/intro]

My real-life skating days petered out when I suffered a broken wrist as a result of a bike/skateboard/rope/water-skiing experiement that turned out to be incompatible with bumpy manhole covers. A true skater would have got straight back up and broken the other one, but I just stayed indoors and played left-handed Bubble Bobble for the next three weeks. Well, I was at that age…

The Tony Hawk games have never done it for me, but Skate is different – Skate feels like real skateboarding. The analogue sticks are used to shift your weight around the board, while you push along with the X and A buttons (on the 360 pad). Everything feels so natural. The graphics are great too – not just the design, but the way your character interacts with the scenery. Another thing I love about Skate is the sound. The music doesn’t butter my crumpet, but the sound of your board clanking and rolling over the various surfaces adds a huge amount of realism and believability. Scoot down to one of the subway stations and the ambience draws you right in.

The idea is that you work your way up from a street-level no-hoper to a pro skater, but I’m happy enough just hanging out and exploring the city, bombing down hills and bothering pedestrians. I’m still looking for the bit where you tie a rope to the back of your brother’s bike and get him to tow you to your doom. It’s got to be in there somewhere.

Skate is out now for Xbox 360 and releases on 12 October for PS3.

Horganator out.