Skateboarding games just haven't been in vogue these past few years. Ask around, and you'll find near unanimous agreement that the genre peaked with Skate 3 back on the Xbox 360 & PS3, and has struggled to find its footing ever since. Creā-ture Studios' Session, shown during Microsoft's big E3 presentation, looks like a return to form. Unlike the EA-backed Skate series though, Session comes from humbler origins, and was kickstarted just last November to the tune of CA$162,716.
Unlike the wild knockabout fun of the Tony Hawk's Pro Skater series, Session is aiming for a more simulation-like experience in the vein of Skate. Controls-wise, this means that each analogue stick (do not even imagine for a second of playing this on mouse and keyboard) controls one foot, and by roughly imitating the motions that real skateboarders use to perform each trick, you'll be able to kickflip, ollie and grind your way around with the best of them. Or bail spectacularly, breaking every bone in your body. Both are fun.
While I'm sure the developers of Session will put their own spin on things, if it plays anything like Skate then expect a lot of very precise motions required, much like in real skateboarding. Flick an analogue stick just a few degrees off target and you may put the wrong kind of spin on the board, and before you know it, you and your trusty flat wooden steed are going in different directions off the edge of a very high ledge.
Much like real skateboarding, a key part of the experience is recording your best runs. Nail an absurdly skilled chain of tricks with all four of your limbs intact, and you'll want to switch over to the video editor side of the game, where you get to place cameras, adjust virtual lenses, tweak tracking and generally produce your own high-end (yet still VHS-styled) skate video, then upload it for bragging rights. If you're out of the skateboarding loop, you'd be amazed at how popular this turned out to be with Skate's fans.
While Session isn't due to fully release until 2019, there is an early access release planned for before the end of this year.
Check out our E3 2018 tag for more announcements, trailers, news, and goodness knows what else.