This title was reviewed on PS4, but is also available on Xbox One, Nintendo Switch and PC.
When I bought my brother’s Wii U, one of the games that came with it was Splatoon, and man what a game it was, it was fast paced, fun and colourful. My favourite game series growing up had to have been the Tony Hawk series, which i’m sad to see pretty much dead after the latest entry was… mixed to say the least. What do these two seemingly random facts have to do with each other? Well, Outright Games and Climax have seemingly put these two together in Crayola Scoot, a game that mixes the extreme sports climate of the Tony Hawk/Skate franchises (albeit on a scooter) with the colourful paint-splashing gameplay of Splatoon. Does it work? Let’s find out.
The graphics on offer here are sub-par. Crayola Scoot goes for a cartoony look complete with cel-shading on the player models, but it just looks bland with flat textures and the like. However, the game does have some great looking paint, albeit not as good looking as the paint in Splatoon. The effects and the way it splashes is well done, and if you stay in a stage long enough, the bland textures will get covered in splashes of colour and begin to look appealing. Maybe that was intentional?
When I said this was Splatoon meets Skate/Tony Hawk, I wasn’t kidding. You scoot around various levels performing tricks and racking up points, but in a Splatoony twist, every trick you land causes splashes of paint to erupt from your character and cover the levels. The usefulness of the paint varies across the game’s six game modes and 12 levels. Some modes like Trick Frenzy and the capture the flag-esque Crazy Crayons don’t use the paint at all, whereas it’s a key mechanic others, like Splatoon turf mode-style Colour Frenzy. The paint can also affect levels, as there’s paint traps and mechanics that can change the levels when splashed with paint, such as the first level summoning a paint-launching Zeppelin. As mentioned, there’s 12 levels, but spread across a lot of events, meaning it can get repetitive after a while, although the various game modes do alleviate this.
The game also, like any extreme sports game, has a character creator. You earn coins as you play through the levels, allowing you to purchase different clothing types. It nowhere near reaches the complexity of Tony Hawk or Skate (even Pro Skater 5 has a more complex system), but it’s something at least.
My main gripe with Crayola Scoot besides the repetitive levels is the controls. I don’t know what it is, but they just feel off. It seems to go for a more Skate style with the right analogue stick ollying and tricking, but it feels weird. The rest of the controls also feel less refined. Maybe that’s just me, because honestly spending nearly 2 decades on Tony Hawk and Skate has made me accustomed to their control schemes. This scheme does work after a bit of practice, but I still yearn for the former two’s controls.
The audio here is mediocre at best. The sound effects are bland and generic, and the same can be said for the music. There’s no licensed tracks or any memorable ones (like You’re a Squid in Splatoon) so the whole thing feels lacking.
Crayola Scoot is an enjoyable but flawed game. It does a decent job of taking Skate and adding Splatoon elements to it, and there’s a bunch of varied and fun game modes to tackle. However, the levels do get repetitive as there’s only 12 spread across a ton of events, the character creator is limited, controls are dodgy and the graphics and sound are mediocre (although the graphics look better after you paint the levels a bit). Once you get used to the controls however, there’s fun to be had, although it probably won’t tide you over until Skate 4 eventually sees the light of day.