The Final Say!
- reviewed by Tory Favro
Distributed By: Microsoft
Being a fan of the game I was really looking forward to this title when it was
released to the Australian public. It promised so much, yet I was apprehensive
as to how much of a contender it would be to the king of tennis games, Sega's
Virtua Tennis had it all as far as tennis
buff's are concerned and this upstart to the crown surely couldn't have what
it takes to topple the original. Well, I am pleased to tell you that it
certainly can and did quite easily and it was with some resignation that I
finally realised there was a new champ and it was this title.
The very first thing that will strike you is how damn good this game looks.
Every little thing you could think off is there and is as sweet as possible,
leaving nothing to chance. This is one game that on occasion you would be
forgiven for setting up your XBox to have it play against itself whilst you
just sit back and watch. It's simply that good to play and look at, and that's
something that in the past I would have only associated with a Madden NFL
title where often I'll set the teams up and recreate games or try to simulate
the Superbowl to see how it would come out.
Control is key in tennis and this game
would have to have the most intuitive yet indepth player control I have had
the pleasure of coming across in a sport title. Your buttons are assigned to
different types of racket strokes and you can also use the triggers on the
left and right of the controller in order to perform specialised shot that in
the past would have been a nightmare to perform. It's a simple matter of
deciding what you want to do and then deftly using the control to make it
happen. Complex or simple, Top Spin's control system is going to provide the
goods for all.
Whilst it seems like an easy enough task to
just smack the ball around where you want it, Top Spin counters that by
essentially making it a bit risky to start doing specialised hits by
introducing a meter that many fans of golf games will be familiar with. When
pulling on a trigger, a power meter will fill and you must let go at the right
time or the game will cause you to err to your detriment as you would in real
life by overhitting the ball out of bounds or dropping short of the net. It
just makes for an even more immersive experience than I'd had with Virtua
Tennis in the past and I was extremely impressed.
Getting into the spirit of the sport is
just as easy as choosing one of the following sixteen players and getting your
Lleyton Hewitt, James Blake, Tommy Robredo,
Jan-Michael Gambill, Michael Chang, Gustavo Kuerten, Meghann Shaughnessy,
Sebastian Grosjean, Anna Kournikova, Daniela Hantuchova, Martina Hingis,
Barbara Schett, Ashley Harkleroad, Elena Dementieva , Amanda Coetzer