Super Tennis (SNES Review)

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Did no one get the memo re: wearing white?

Did no one get the memo re: wearing white?

The NES was short on tennis sims, that’s an understatement. So Super Tennis was an obvious launch title for this genre on the SNES although there’s not much super about it.  The presentation looks pretty good and the development team clearly want you to know that they’ve been perfecting the panoramic zoom in, zoom out technique (to reveal the full court).  It’s colourful and Nintendo rejoice in the SNES’s larger palette.  Then it all starts to go a bit wrong.

 

PLEASE GOD NO!!!

PLEASE GOD NO!!!

The game has three modes, solo exhibition, two player exhibition and the circuit “career” mode.  The players have no visible attributes (if they’re there then I’m clearly going blind) so when you’re choosing your character in any of the three modes it’s a complete toss-up as to how they’ll fare.  There’s no progression in career mode.  I wanted to choose someone easy to pummel in practice mode but I just couldn’t find one!  Which brings me to the courtside action.

 

The stadia and sprites all look very nice, there’s actual animated spectators too.  The players are well animated but as soon as you start playing you uncover Super Tennis’s main flaw – poor collision detection.  The ball doesn’t hit the racket, in fact the sweet spot is a few millimetres off the end of the racket.  Once you’ve gotten used to that and some baseline rallies are going pretty well – every other shot is impossible to pull off.  It’s also extremely difficult to serve and keep your thumping baseline rallies in play, meaning you need to hold back somewhat.

 

Look, I’m not using a bigger one!

Look, I’m not using a bigger one!

The CPU doesn’t hold back, oh no.  Whichever opponent you choose, or are pitted against in career mode will have the serve variation of Ivanisevic, the return of Agassi and the agility of Borg all rolled into one pummelling after another. Good tennis sims will only punish you if you’re timing is off or button press is way too long, Super Tennis punishes you all the time.

 

There’s not enough here to warrant anything other than playing against your mate because at least then you can both laugh about how bad it is and have a competitive game.

 

Super-Tennis-snes-review

4 Comments on “Super Tennis (SNES Review)”

  1. Great review! For Fans: You can compete this great game also with other nerds in online tournaments on SNESOT.com. Currently the biggest SNES online community. You just need four things for that (all is free): 1) ZSNES 1.42 emu, 2) The game, 3) Hamachi, 4) a free account on snesot.com. cheers

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