Super Tennis review - Super Nintendo
Fancy yourself as a bit of a Becker? Or perhaps the top-ranked super skills of Steffi graf are more your style. This latest Super Famicom cart enables couch potato armchair athletes to participate in the sport where grunting loudly in a very unsettling manner is every bit as important as winning the points.
Super Tennis provides you with every manner of tennis court known to man, along with cute players, ball boys and umpires, along with computerised opposition (if you're playing in one-player mode). Also included are digital representations of the top players in the tennis world, so look out for the likes of Obekka, Lendou and Guraffe (no prizes for guessing the names of their real life counterparts). Plenty of lesser players are also included, some of whom only appear in the Grand Slam tournaments.
With the aid of an excellent control method, just about every kind of shot is possible in Super Tennis. It's down to you to master it!
What the Mean Machines staff thought
with its intuitive controls, fast action and utterly fantastic gameplay, Super Tennis is the finest simulation of the sport ever produced. It's got great graphics and sound (the caricatures are brilliant - my fave's Wagassi), but it's the sheer pace and playability that makes this a classic sports game. It's horribly addictive in one-player mode, and for two-player thrills and spills it ranks alongside Kick Off 2, John Madden's and Ice Hockey as one of the best. It caused the entire office to grind to a standstill, with constant challenges being issued and grudge matches being played (even now, as I write this I can hear Rich cussing his head off with frustration because he's getting his monkey ass busted by Gary). I don't think I need to tell you this, but I will anyway - if you're a Super Famicom owner, get it.
Super Tennis looks and plays very much like Final Match Tennis on the PC Engine, which is no bad thing as that was the best tennis game ever. I say 'was' because Super Tennis is vastly superior in a number of aspects. First of all, the Famicom's 3D chip is used to good effect to give a brilliant tennis court that features stunning scrolling. Add in the myriad of extra options and you've got the greatest tennis sim ever. The vast amount of players to choose from is also a welcome addition and the two-player option also adds an extra special ingredient. Serving an ace to the outrage of your 'pal' has a particularly satisfactory feeling, especially if it's Gary Harrod you're playing (ha!). The icing on the cake is the exclamations the players make. After winning an arduous rally, players scream 'yeah', but if they muck it up they say something a bit ruder...Super Tennis is yet another essential but for the Super Famicom, and ranks highly in a league featuring all the classics, including John Madden Football, Kick Off and EA Ice Hockey.
Tennis as a pastime has never really appealed to me. However, it's made one of the most successful transitions to videogame format of any sport. 'Pong' is basically tennis, and since the release of that game there have been many versions on many different machines. Super Tennis sticks in my mind as one of the best examples of the genre. The single-player mode I'm not too fussed about - it's the two-player section which really sets this game apart. It is the most fantastically competitive multiplayer sports title. The range of buttons on the SNES pad are used to full effect to produce a variety of different shot types, all of which can be introduced to change the flow of a rally and force your opponent off-guard. More recently we've been treated to the delights of Sega's Virtua Tennis series, and as great as that is, I still firmly believe that Super Tennis is the best representation of the sport on any gaming platform.
Have your say about this review
Dan - 25 Feb 2009, 17:11 GMT
Simple, addictive, effective and a game that lasted forever, especialy in 2 player mode.
mitzibishi - 22 Jul 2009, 03:34 GMT
if you don't like tennis, its a great flowing game and in 2 player it excels. plays like a dream. the only thing that i can say lets it down is its source material
dave mead - 16 Oct 2009, 19:02 GMT
Memories are made of this - the best tennis game ever.
Mark - 24 Feb 2010, 18:03 GMT
Would have loved to see this on the DS with wi-fi modes.
Gabriel West - 05 Jan 2013, 20:34 GMT
To play Super Tennis SNES Online Tournaments (Meet the best human players around the planet) - Visit SNESOT.com - You just need this stuff to participate - Emulator: ZSNES 1.42, rom: "Super Tennis (U) [!].smc", a program to connect with your opponents (very secure): Hamachi (Logmein Hamachi) See you guys in tournaments on SNESOT.com !!
Gabriel West - 05 Jan 2013, 20:36 GMT