Tubular: Wave hello to Surf World Series

You either surf, or you fight. And while there’s plenty of the latter in this multicoloured monster of an industry, there’s less of the former. The noble sport of surfing has been underrepresented by games, say developers Climax Studios, of Silent Hill: Shattered Memories fame. So they’ve decided to make Surf World Series [official site], an “arcade-style” wave-rider with five of the world’s best surfing destinations, such as Hawaii and Portugal. You can come and look at a trailer, if you like flickering edits and sloshy, salty water.

There’ll be 45 singleplayer challenges and three modes of 16-person mutliplayer, all allowing you to rank up and customise your character, say the devs. It’s coming out at some as-yet-unknown point in 2017. I’m not sure how far the “arcade” element is going to go – I can spot no sharks or silliness – and some of those surfer dude animations look less gnarly and more gnarled. But the developers have a point about the under-representation of the sport. This year delivered the disappointing Steep to slake our extreme winter sports thirst but the only surf ’em up of 2016 that I can think of is the free and undersung multiplayer arcade slicer Surf Shogun.

My own interest in surfing extends only as far as the madness of Lieutenant Colonel Bill Kilgore. But it’s interesting to read that the recurring surf legend Kelly Slater has won more world championships than any other sportsperson, even beating professional drug-taker Lance Armstrong. He was both the youngest to win the World Surf League Championship at twenty and the oldest to win, at 39. What.


  1. Pich says:

    The idea intrigues me but’ll wait to judge when there’s a trailer not made entirely of instagram filters

  2. colossalstrikepackage says:

    No. Just no. As somebody who has gotten pretty good at falling off boards, I really think it’s not possible to capture the essence of falling off boards on a computer’s games.

    • lglethal says:

      Ah come on, you just need someone standing behind you with a bucket of water, and everytime you wipe out, they throw the bucket of water over your head! what more do you need? :P

  3. baozi says:

    Kelly Slater’s Pro Surfer 2? :D

  4. soul4sale says:

    Yes, but can you play as a cat in a tuxedo?

  5. Shazbut says:

    Looks ok, but it’s a shame that the sport can’t be portrayed realistically. The moves in that trailer look like things that no surfer has ever been capable of doing, even that Kelly Slater guy. Maybe the tech is not at the point where an actual surfing simulator is feasible

    • Hedgeclipper says:

      I suspect the trouble is that it would be impossible to capture the feel of surfing and its just not that interesting to look at so they need something to make the game.

  6. racccoon says:

    A lot of game players just do not understand how hard it is to create a perfect wave in gaming. Its virtually impossible to create its force and its unpredictability. Loads of surf games haven’t made their mark because of this problem in 3d graphic physics modelling, a few/lot of surf games have fallen too, & this looks like another one, with only tricked waves set in, that really don’t look or feel like one.
    On waves we are talking about crashing waves created in 3d not general code for sine waves which do not have physics with interruptions.

  7. sewers-of-mars says:

    The best parts of surfing are setting up a good takeoff on a nice wave, a nice turn, lining up a barrel, making a section.
    Some of the best surfers in the world don’t even do aerials – or at least I don’t :'( lol

  8. Legion1183 says:

    Those movements – especially the stunts – look choppy as hell in that trailer. Like a crappy arcade game or something. This does not look good at all…

  9. bill says:

    Kelly Slater’s Pro surfer is one of my favorite games.
    It’s probably not a great game (more limited than Tony Hawk and nothing like real surfing) but it has an excellent vibe.

    It’s weirdly relaxing and zen to surf down an endless wave while listening to chilled out Jack Johnson and a good soundtrack.

    I actually dug out my old gamecube version a few weeks back… still fun.