Friday, May 29, 2009

Game of the Week: Virtua Tennis 2009 - Just in Time for the Culmination of Clay Court Season

If you’re anything like me, you’re passionate about tennis.

If you’re not that much like me, but you are a gamer, then there’s a good chance you love a good tennis video game, even if you have no interest in the real sport. And if your tennis affiliation lies in the virtual world, then you should hit your local game retailer this week – Virtua Tennis 2009 releases June 2nd!

Now, don’t you worry – I’m not going to start talking about the French Open that is going on at Roland Garros right now. I won’t mention that Andy Roddick isn’t fooling anyone by getting in to the 3rd round, or that it doesn’t matter as Rafa Nadal is unbeatable in France (and don’t talk to me about Federer beating him in the last tourney, Nadal owns him and you know it). I won’t talk about the women’s game, or about how I want Serena Williams to show the rest of the ladies in the world who is boss.

Instead, let’s talk about gameplay and how Virtua Tennis always delivers great gameplay like a slicing second serve by Nadal himself – easy to get a bead on, but with so much English on it that it takes a long time to master. The controls in the Virtua Tennis games are simple enough to pick up and play by just about anyone almost immediately. You can pop the disc into the tray of your console of choice (the game releases across all major platforms), and can start playing and having fun within minutes. At the same time, though, there are nuances and skills to be learned, and mastery of the game is a rewarding experience. And skills will be learned – there are 12 mini games to play, in the ridiculous style of past iterations of the franchise. All the fun (and they are FUN) to be had with them will build you skill for the career mode, where online rankings can have you compete with players around the world.

I love this franchise for its fun, arcade take on a great sport – anyone planning on getting it to challenge me on Xbox Live?

- Goodchild

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Anonymous May 31, 2009 at 12:45 PM  

who would believe? Nadal is out!! OMG. I played the previous version (virtua tennis 3)and it's looks like the same gamplay this year. the same moves. i'm anticipating every animation after point winning. disappointing. I HOPE, verdasco is also included in this game at least.