Metascore
75

Generally favorable reviews - based on 43 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 27 out of 43
  2. Negative: 0 out of 43
  1. 90
    The visuals are the sickest they've ever been in a Hawk game, but that should come as no surprise--this is the 360. The player skins and massive environments are polished beyond belief, while the moves look exceptionally lifelike.
  2. 90
    THAW for Xbox 360 is a phenomenal game...if you haven't picked it up already.
  3. It’s a perfectly blend of extreme sports action with an intuitive trick system that allows you to grow with the game, and big city free-roaming adventure much like a GTA game without all the violence.
  4. American Wasteland is good, it just isn’t as impressive as it could have been considering the console’s capabilities.
  5. 85
    The story mode seems a little short. It also seemed very easy, which could be part of the reason it seems so short.
  6. The story mode is fun, funny and yet not absurd enough to wonder what drugs were abused during development time.
  7. I can't put my finger on it, the Story Mode was a great shot at changing things up a bit, it wasn't bad, but its not quite what the doctor ordered. Outside of that, the trick system, mechanics, and look are great as always.
  8. 83
    The Xbox 360 version of the game is really nothing more than a port of the current-gen versions, with upgraded textures and a bit of normal mapping... It's still a great game through and through.
  9. The chance to skate a virtual LA will appeal to Tony Hawk fans and those new to the series will find the story mode a great way to quickly learn how to be a sick video skate rat.
  10. It's one thing to be the same game and just blow you away with presentation or little tweaks to the gameplay. It's another to just be the same game. On it's merits, Tony Hawk American Wasteland is a great skateboarding game. But it is not really a next-gen game, and that's a shame.
  11. A step in the right direction for the series and certainly plays well enough on the 360.
  12. You really shouldn't even think about picking up American Wasteland before you've got "Amped 3" proudly displayed on your games shelf, because it eclipses Tony Hawk's in every conceivable way - graphics, music selection, story and cut scene presentation, and even gameplay, plus there's even more to do.
  13. An excellent skating game despite the fact that there’s very little that distinguishes this from the other console versions.
  14. The Xbox 360 version of Tony Hawk's American Wasteland is - despite the only-modest improvements - the best version of the game available on any system, and can be recommended as such.
  15. All in all, Tony Hawk’s American Wasteland is exactly the kind of fun you were expecting in such a title, and if those expectations aren’t sky-high in terms of graphical prowess on the new system than this title is for you.
  16. 80
    Hopefully when the next iteration arrives we can finally see a graphical upgrade worthy of calling it next-gen.
  17. For its time, it's not the best one (I'll leave that honor to Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 2 back from 2000), but it's still a lot of fun - as long as pro players don't mind how easy it'll be for them, nor if the newbies don't mind how hard it is for them.
  18. A definite step up from the Underground brand, but make no mistake: It's still yet another Tony Hawk game. With Activision seemingly stuck on annual sequels and Neversoft's dedication to advancement, you'll see even more bugs than before.
  19. Those expecting next-gen brilliance will only find a modified port. At least it's a good one.
  20. The level design is somewhat the same as other incarnations of the title. The moderately spruced up and polished graphics really make this effort a bit of a disappointment.
  21. Tony Hawk’s American Wasteland is the best game in terms of gameplay and graphics in the series to date. However that said, those looking for the next-generation look, feel, or features will be disappointed – there is nothing to really distinguish the game on the Xbox 360 from versions on the Xbox or PS2.
  22. If you've been away from the Tony Hawk franchise for a few games and just dropped a bunch of cash for a 360, it's time to get re-acquainted with the King of Extreme Sports Games.
  23. What’s heartbreaking is that it didn’t gain any knowledge when migrating from console to console. Sure, it has a new coat of fur, a full belly, and a smile on its face, but it’s the same bird you knew many moons ago.
  24. It's fun, just not next-gen sparkly. [Jan 2006, p.62]
  25. Maybe it's time to teach this dog some new tricks and enter the realm of hub-based platforming with fantasy elements. Now that'd be something. [Jan 2006, p.49]
  26. Neversoft needs to seriously look at what they've done right with THAW (larger environments and skating mechanics) and strip away the fat to return Tony Hawk back to what made it great: a clean, fast, and compelling sports game for those of us who aren't so much into "sports."
  27. American Wasteland is greased lightning on the 360, but is otherwise totally unchanged from its earlier release. I suppose it’s a fine purchase if you skipped out on the other versions, but keep in mind that you're just getting new wheels for the same old board.
  28. Unless you’re locked into buying a bundle when you purchase your Xbox 360 this holiday, it’s probably best to rent Tony Hawk’s American Wasteland.
  29. There isn’t so much gameplay here that you can’t beat it in a couple of days, and the fact that the levels aren’t completely free open really reduces the game’s sense of scale.
  30. A somewhat dated gameplay engine shows its age on the 360 hardware...Better looking than the regular Xbox version, but not by leaps and bounds.
  31. Not exactly groundbreaking and there are very few noticeable play alterations, but it plays well on the Xbox 360 controller thanks to the repositioned Black and White shoulder buttons (the buffers). [Official UK Xbox Magazine]
  32. The strange thing is, there is something different about this one, like it was a bit rushed, and that doesn’t reward you at all.
  33. More of the same in a different wrapping.
  34. Tony Hawk fans will probably find Tony Hawk's American Wasteland a must-buy, but I really think the franchise is starting to get as overexposed as Mega Man.
  35. American Wasteland on the 360 runs in a high-enough resolution to show off every single ugly little flaw that isn't as apparent in other versions of this otherwise-decent skateboarding game.
  36. Regardless of how it looks or sounds, American Wasteland just feels like a step backwards from previous Tony Hawk games.
  37. This is a title that fans of skateboarding games will pick up and love, due to the simple fact that for XBox 360, there isn't much of a selection of this type of game out there for them. Other people can and might enjoy it, but in the end, it fails to impress and is nothing spectacular.
  38. When only a couple of challenges require you to break the million point barrier, only the weakest players will have trouble acing the game in hours. [Christmas 2005, p.107]
  39. What there isn't, though, is a great deal new in gameplay terms, making the old-gen game desirable, rather than essential. [Issue #3]
  40. Regrettably Tony Hawk’s American Wasteland feels too much like a “by numbers” sequel; a tag that in some eyes has been hanging around the series for a while now, but most certainly manifests itself in THAW.
  41. There is absolutely nothing here that is different to the xbox version apart from minor graphical advancements. So, on the one hand there is still a great game here, but with annoyingly random game crashes (and THAW is the only game I've had crash on my 360) and the fact it's anything but next-gen I really can't recommend it to anyone.
  42. 60
    When entering the next generation you expect more and unfortunately Neversoft has delivered a very quick port.
  43. 60
    A cheap and dirty port, Tony Hawk American Wasteland is only recommendable to newbies or hopelessly devoted fans. On the 360, however, the game is not worth the extra $10. The lousy graphics, and tired gameplay makes this one a serious grind.
User Score
7.1

Mixed or average reviews- based on 19 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 3 out of 5
  2. Negative: 1 out of 5
  1. Jan 18, 2013
    9
    This was my favorite Tony Hawk game and the franchises peak. Great park creator, cool character creator, and a goofy but simple story with a predictable ending. While a large chunk of the levels are from older games ranging from THUG2 Remix for the PSP to THPS1 on the N64, I didn't know until later and still don't really care. It's a solid title and more of the same great game. Full Review »
  2. BobbyJ.
    Nov 8, 2006
    8
    I thought this game was very entertaining! Even though I thnk they should of lowered the difficulty a litlle lower beacause I found it quiet challenging. Full Review »
  3. AdamB.
    Jul 22, 2006
    7
    As a 360 game, this is a lackluster port; the only real draws are the standard 360 features such as Live, Achievements, and Soundtracks. The graphics quality looks identical to PS2 running in progressive scan, and the controller is clunkier than PS2's for nailing down the tougher combos. Still, due to the lack of Live games for 360 that allow great freedom of movement and character customization, Wasteland makes a great addition to anyone's library at the current time. As more open-ended 360 Live games are released, such as Mass Effect, Phantasy Star Universe, and presumably GTA online, I would wait until Wasteland's price dropped to around $20 before checking it out. As an original game, Wasteland feels more complete and freeing than the Underground games (and with preloading, is a much smoother experience), yet lacks some of the classic feel of the original Pro Skater series. With that said, Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 3 and 4 remain the truest and most enjoyable virtual skateboarding experiences. Pick them up for the PS2 if you can, since they don't support online play on 360. Or if you're a Hawk game fan and can't wait for your latest fix, you can't go wrong here. Full Review »