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‘Virtua Tennis Challenge’ – Shot taken? | Review

90%
Great

Virtua Tennis Challenge

The gameplay is demanding but decent, and most of the time even the gnawing controls work fantastically. Virtua Tennis Challenge achieves one key objective, even without much true-life influence: mobile tennis action. It may be more expensive than most casual games, but if you love hitting the furry green ball, your time and cash will be worth it.

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Virtua Tennis Challenge
  • Virtua Tennis Challenge

For the first time, Sega has taken its popular tennis series to phones and tablets. Virtua Tennis Challenge is just a sheared-down version of its predecessors on the console. You can’t see big-name players like Federer, Nadal, or any of the most popular women in tennis.

The mode of the World Tour is barebones and online communication is nil. Nonetheless, it compensates for what it lacks in usability and quality by providing a great tennis experience.

Controls

One of the greatest features (and only minor annoyance) of the Virtua Tennis Challenge is the control scheme. If you own an Xperia Play, you can use arcade-style controls for playing the game. You switch with the d-pad and for each shot type, you press a specific button. Fans of console tennis games are likely to be familiar with such a system as it is the same as in almost any tennis game today.

virtua tennis challenge 1

Nevertheless, touchscreen buttons differ greatly from conventional gaming style and are mostly a refreshing change. All is achieved by tapping the screen or swiping it. At first, it can be confusing (especially because it lacks a hands-on guide, and the how-to info is well-hidden), but when you get the hold of it, it usually plays beautifully.

You get 4 shots, each of which involves a specific type of action. Your strength and trajectory depend on the stroke’s distance and direction, as well as a bit of luck, so hitting the ball out of play isn’t too hard.

During motion, the controls take a little twist for the worse. You just need to tap into a stance to move your player and he’ll be heading there. The problem that arises is that swiping will also cause him to shift if he is not able to play on the ball. When you want him to loft the ball to the other side, it’s not unusual to send your player rushing to the net.

Thanks to the player running when he was needed to jump, it was considered most of the points scored against me. Such mishaps are becoming less frequent in training, but from time to time you will inevitably run into them.

Modes

The exhibition is both transparent and cooperative. You can play against the AI (or humans through Bluetooth) singles or doubles. Nonetheless, there’s not much to have to customize. The characters do not seem to have a lot of variety without statistics. Everyone has a distinctive style that offers them a special opportunity (usable at the ball by double-swiping), but they really don’t add a sense of ownership or variation.

One place where you can customize some flexibility is in the menu of options. Virtua Tennis Challenge is quite tough. The AI difficulty has 3 levels: Normal Hard, and Very Hard.

virtua tennis challenge 2

Normal is as challenging as it is, and it will end in you taking a beat more often than not to overcome the challenge. The high difficulty means games always last long by default, but in order to keep things moving, you can change the number of players and sets.

Verdict

There is not much variety and at the same time the controls can be a bit inconvenient, but the SPT World Tour feature is enjoyable enough to keep you going before you hit number one.

The gameplay is demanding but decent, and most of the time even the gnawing controls work fantastically. Virtua Tennis Challenge achieves one key objective, even without much true-life influence: mobile tennis action. It may be more expensive than most casual games, but if you love hitting the furry green ball, your time and cash will be worth it.