Culture. Media. Skateboarding.

Skateboard Games – A History of Skateboarding Video Games


If you’re a skateboarder, there’s a huge chance you’ve played a skateboarding video game.  Heck, even if you’re not a skateboarder, you’ve likely played one or two at some point in your life.  What you might not know is that skateboarding has been in video games for a LONG time.  Here’s a look at just some of the many skateboarding video games and arcade games that have been released over the past few decades:

720 skateboarding, arcade game, atari games, video game720° – Arcade game by Atari, 1986
Perhaps the start of it all, 720 Degrees was an arcade game by Atari.  Named after the trick, which of course was the most rotations done on a skateboard at that time (of course invented by Tony Hawk).  There is still some working 720 arcade game consoles out there.  You might have to go on a mission to find this, but it will probably be worth it.




atari, skateboarding, gameSkate Boardin’ – Atari 2600 VCS, 1987
Very possibly the first skateboarding video game in existence made for home consoles.  So old that “skateboarding” as a single-word term was still not widely accepted.  But hey, you gotta give credit where credit is due.  And if you’re going to be the first of something, we’re usually going to give you a lot of credit, no matter the graphics.




california games, video game, skate, skateboardingCalifornia Games – Many Platforms, 1987
The first widely released video game that featured skateboarding and many stereotypical “California Sports”.  California Games was definitely a fan favorite.  Finding a copy of this game shouldn’t be hard as long as you can get the owner to part with it.



town, country, surf, designs, skate, video gamesTown & Country Surf Designs: Wood & Water Rage – NES, 1988
Yeah, not a great name for a video game.  But come on, doesn’t this take you back?
Now that we think about it, there was a good chance you weren’t alive.  You gotta give it nostalgia points though!  Oh and they eventually made a sequel where you can skate through the jungle!




skate or die, video game, skatingSkate or Die! – NES & PC, 1988
You gotta love the music.  Or how about “Skating To The Pool Joust” at the 2:44 mark… “Aggro’ Eddie” and “Poseur Pete”?  This is just awesome.




skate or die, skateboarding, video gamesSkate or Die 2: The Search for Double Trouble – NES, 1990
From Wikipedia,
“At the start of the game, the player is armed with a paintball gun and a handful of weapons to throw at his enemies.”
How is that not the gnarliest thing ever?







tour de thrash, game boy, skate, nintendo, gamesSkate or Die: Tour de Thrash
A Game Boy entry of the Skate or Die series, though it didn’t carry much over from the console versions.
Still notable in it’s own right as being the first real handheld skateboarding video game.



x games, skateboarding, video gameESPN Extreme Games / 1Xtreme – PlayStation, 1995 & MS-DOS, 1996
Like California Games, ESPN’s Extreme Games (renamed to 1Xtreme later on) featured a variety of game modes.  As it’s name suggests, the sports were based off those included in the 1995 Summer X-Games (held in Rhode Island that year).    In addition to skateboarding, Extreme Games featured street luge, BMX, and *sigh*… rollerblading.
This game eventually spawned two sequels, 2Xtreme and 3Xtreme.


Top Skater – Arcade game by Sega, 1997
This one definitely drew crowds.
Was it just like skateboarding?  Haha.
Did it make any sense?  Not really.
Was it realistic in any way?  Not at all.
But if this game got at least one kid to say “This was fun, maybe I’ll try real skateboarding”,
then we’re glad that it was made.

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