The last solid tennis game was released years ago. With Tennis World Tour 2, which will be released in September, the developers of Big Ant Studios plan to make a dent. Was the game worth the wait?
After the mixed reception of Tennis World Tour in 2018, it seems that the game's successor will make up for it. In our Tennis World Tour 2 Preview, we'll let you know if the rebirth of the tennis genre has been successful or if you'll have to wait a little longer.
Quick Facts about Tennis World Tour 2:
- Developer: Big Ant Studios
- Publisher: Bigben Interactive
- Genre: Sports game
- Release: September 2020
- Players: 1-4
Tennis World Tour 2 Has Much Improved Gameplay
Developers Big Ant Studios have big plans for Tennis World Tour 2. No wonder, as the list of criticisms of the predecessor was enormously long.
Fortunately, Tennis World Tour 2 can actually weed out the biggest ones: Tennis World Tour 1 felt tame and boring. Players' movements and the trajectory of the ball were too predetermined by the AI, with little player-influence.
With Tennis World Tour 2 this is finally a thing of the past. The position to the ball and the direction of your stroke are of crucial importance, which makes for much more dynamic rallies.
The entry into the game turns out to be quite complex though. Even at the lowest difficulty level, our CPU opponents rushed us mercilessly across the court. It takes a little while to get used to the new gameplay, but once you do, you really have fun.
The gameplay of Tennis World Tour 2 is clearly based on that of Top Spin 4: Timing is crucial when it comes to hitting shots. An indicator in the game shows how good your timing is and the better your timing, the more precise and stronger the ball will pass the net. On top of that, the improved serve system gives you more control over your serves and another multitude of gameplay improvements, combined with the revised player animations and the improved stadium atmosphere, make for a much more fun game.
We are also finally allowed to play doubles. A feature that was glaringly missing in the predecessor. Now you can even team up online, however, both doubles partners have to be at the same console (or PC).
Overall, Tennis World Tour 2 plays better and is more realistic than Part 1. The Stamina system has been simplified to make it more fun to play, but, nonetheless, this game aims to be a simulation of the sport, which is also noticeable in its courts the courts:
The Courts of Tennis World Tour 2
Whether we play on grass, sand or indoors - it has a clear effect on the gameplay. On a grass court the balls don't travel as far as they do indoors and in the scorching heat of Spain, the endurance of our players decreases faster than on a breezy tennis evening in Great Britain.
We can't say much about the scope of the game yet - our preview version, only had quick matches and only four of 38 players were available. However, there are supposed to be some officially licensed tournaments that you can play in career mode on your way to the top of the world rankings.
Tennis World Tour 2 Esports?
Of course, the question of 'could it be an esports' always interests us. According to the developers, there are no plans for an official tournament now, but there are plans to have tournaments organized by official partners. Tennis World Tour 2 is designed for competitive games, after all. In the online multiplayer there will be a ranked mode and leagues in which you can organize your own tournaments.
Whether the game will also get an upgrade for the next-gen PS5 and Xbox Series X... the developers did not want to tell us yet. For the time being, the game only releases for PC, PS4, and Xbox One.
Tennis World Tour 2: Verdict
Following its lackluster predecessor, the developers are using the expertise gained with AO Tennis 2 to significantly improve Tennis World Tour 2 in all aspects. Although the new game does not quite match the playing qualities of the legendary genre kings of the past, it is on the right track.
Well... truthfully, we can only say that in regard to the game's realistic gameplay. Due to our limited playing-access, we can't say anything about the scope of the game's content and its variety at the moment. Nevertheless, what we did play, left a good impression. Sure: technically the game can't keep up with a FIFA or NBA 2K, but purely from a gameplay point of view the tennis game does a lot of things right.
If the scope, variety, and connection quality of the online mode are also on point, we have the best tennis simulation in years coming our way in September.
More news from the world of esports and gaming can be found on EarlyGame and for