SEGA Superstars Tennis Wii
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Released on 20/03/2008
Sega Superstar Tennis includes several of the most memorable Sega characters including Sonic The Hedgehog, AiAi from Super Monkey Ball fame, Ulala of Space Channel 5 and Amigo from Samba De Amigo, each of whom have their own unique attributes, and superstar tennis skills. Sega Superstar Tennis' arcade style matches are played out on courts based on environments from Sega games of the past such as the lush tropics of Sonic’s Green Hill Zone or the street fair fiesta of Amigo’s Carnival Park to name a few.
With hilarious cameos and comical guest umpires from SEGA’s rich gaming history, Sega Superstar Tennis is a fun-filled tennis party guaranteed to be a smashing good time for the whole family!
Sega Superstar Tennis Features:
- Zany SEGA Characters with Superstar Abilities: Each of the 16 characters in Sega Superstar Tennis has their own superstar alter-ego which gives them the winning edge on the court.
- Ten Fantastical Themed Courts: Guest umpires in Sega Superstar Tennis will supervise the action on a wide variety of colorful courts, from Sonic’s lush Green Hill Zone to Ulala’s galactic Space Channel 5 world, to name a few.
- Four Action-Packed Tournaments: As Sega Superstar Tennis players slice their way through the competitive tournaments they will unlock loads of bonus content!
- Easy Addictive Fun! Developed by SUMO Digital Ltd. - makers of the acclaimed Virtua Tennis 3 - Sega Superstar Tennis' intuitive controls enable gamers to jump right in and serve it up, SEGA style!
Sonic and co. get back into the swing of things...
Following last year's stunning Virtua Tennis 3 and the ongoing successes of Wii Sports Tennis, Sega Superstars Tennis must have been a no-brainer for the ideas guys at Sega HQ. In the vein of Nintendo's Mario Strikers and the Mario Tennis series, Sega Superstars Tennis combines favoured company mascots (in this case Sonic, Tails, AiAi and co) with themed areas and pick-up-and-play sporting gameplay, delivering online play on next-gen versions and motion-sensing control on Nintendo's console.
It's that unique control which saw us look at the Wii version of Sega Superstars Tennis first. Using the Nunchuk to move your character and the Wiimote to swing is a first for a Wii tennis title (Wii Sports moves the players for you), and will be many people's preference, as well as being Sega's recommended way to play Sega Superstars Tennis.
But that's actually a bit of a false promise, because playing with the Nunchuck-Remote method, Sega Superstars Tennis has you aiming shots with the Nunchuk analogue instead of the Wii gyroscope – so arm movements merely replace the act of pressing a button. It's a tradeoff really; the Wiimote feels less like a tennis racket, but being able to guide your character around the court is welcome.
The Wiimote-only control method is a bit of a mixed bag, too. Gyroscopic aiming makes Sega Superstars Tennis feel like Wii Sports, and there's an added option to use the D-pad to move your character – but alas, Sega don't seem to have mastered the Wiimote as Nintendo did, so shots in Sega Superstars Tennis aren't as responsive; while moving with the D-pad just confuses when you're swinging the Remote. Both modes have you holding the A button to lob and B button for drop shots, but for our money the Nunchuk option is the more enjoyable.
Sega Superstars Tennis feels like a colourful, novelty-filled and easier to play version of Virtua Tennis 3.
The third option sees you turn the Wiimote sideways, using the d-pad to move and 1 and 2 for top spin and slice shots; pressing both together to lob. You can also plug in a GameCube pad or Classic Controller if you choose, mimicking the control method for the other console versions of Sega Superstars Tennis – which themselves are based upon the tried and tested Virtua Tennis formula.
Indeed, Sega Superstars Tennis feels like a colourful, novelty-filled and easier to play version of last year's tennis great. While rallies aren't as deep or tactical, characters are still based on individual traits, in this case speed, power, spin, control or good all-round play, with the eight initial competitors joined by eight unlockable ones from Sega's past, such as Golden Axe's Gillius and Alex Kidd. Each has their own superstar move, accessible after enough successful shots, and using these at the right time can prove pivotal during rallies.
The courts, meanwhile, simply ooze the feel of the games they're based on. From the sandy, cacti-framed Samba de Amigo court and its Samba de Janeiro soundtrack to Sonic's Green Hill Zone inspired play area, Ulala's futuristic Space Channel 5 setting and more, Sega Superstars Tennis a wonderful tribute to Sega's heyday.
A wonderful tennis timesink
As are Sega Superstars Tennis' many minigames. Like those in VT3 they're based around much more than mere tennis – but like the courts and characters, these are themed on Sega games of old and will delight Sega fans with their gameplay novelty, from the zombie-bashing Curien of the Dead to tennis ball target practice with the Virtua Cop minigames and much, much more.
It's just a shame that Superstars mode, the main singleplayer game which unlocks you more minigames as you progress, lacks VT3's statistical character-building element. That said, it mixes minigames, tournaments and has enough variety to be a wonderful timesink which Sega fans and particularly younger players will get great value from. Add to that the next-gen online modes, multiplayer support and some inventive Xbox 360 Achievements and ignore a bit of slowdown during doubles matches, and you'll find Sega Superstars Tennis delivers hours of lighthearted tennis fun.
- A fantastic ode to Sega's best titles of years gone by.
- A fun, simplified, easy to play version of the Virtua Tennis engine with many of your fave Sega mascots as players.
- Minigames and superstar moves ensure Sega Superstars Tennis is filled with variety.
- Selling Points: On Wii, shots are directed by the Nunchuk, not the Wiimote. On next-gen versions, finding people to play with online can be an issue.
- Nowhere near the depth and tactical rallies of Virtua Tennis 3.
- Some slowdown in doubles matches.
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