The enduring Tony Hawk brand made its videogame debut in 1999 with Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater, a PlayStation title developed by Neversoft and published by Activision. The game was a major hit, and following its release Neversoft worked almost exclusively on new games for the series, with occasional breaks for games like Spider-Man and Gun. But recent releases like Tony Hawk’s Proving Ground have earned less than stellar marks, and after MTV acquired original Guitar Hero developer Harmonix in 2007, Neversoft shifted its focus to that franchise with the release of Guitar Hero III: Legends of Rock.
The studio followed up with the release of Guitar Hero: Aerosmith and Guitar Hero World Tour, and is now working on Guitar Hero: Metallica, scheduled for release later this year. But the ongoing success of the series has apparently left little time for anything else, as co-founder and president Joel Jewett told the Great Falls Tribune that Neversoft would no longer be handling Tony Hawk games. “It’s probably best for the franchise,” he said. “It’s time for someone else to add fresh ideas to it.”
Jewett didn’t reveal who that “someone else” might be, but Giant Bomb says it’s likely to be Robomodo, a startup studio put together by the former heads of the closed EA Chicago studio. No details have been released, but Robomodo is reportedly working on a “high-profile extreme sports title for Activision Blizzard,” a apt description for the Tony Hawk pedigree.