About a month ago we were able to get a first impression of Tennis World Tour 2 and from the preview, it was already quite positive. Now the sports game is finally on the shelves and we have once again entered Centre Court. Can we finally expect a good tennis game once again?
For our Tennis World Tour 2 review, we got all dressed up and took our own pro with ponytail, short-shorts and a pink polo shirt onto the court.
Quick Facts about Tennis World Tour 2:
- Developer: Big Ant Studios
- Publisher: Bigben Interactive
- Genre: Sports game
- Release: 24.09.2020
- Players: 1-4
Tennis World Tour 2's Gameplay
In our preview, we could only play fast games, but the final full version unlocks all game modes. The core of contemporary sports game is the extensive career mode.
We start with a custom created pro, which we get to design based on an array of characteristics. We browse through the annual tennis calendar in order to participate in various tournaments, fast games or training sessions. But the breaks are just as important, because the more we play, the more exhausted our pro becomes. With regular relaxation, the exhaustion indicator empties, but if it reaches a critical value, the risk of injuring ourselves in a game increases.
We complete tournament after tournament, game after game, and equip our players with new rackets, grips or outfits. With gained experience, we move up in rank, whereupon we improve the pro in three skill categories.
However, is that in the first stages you are hardly able to successfully return a ball at all. So we have to repeat many games in order to even win at the lowest level of difficulty. Frustration is inevitable for newcomers to tennis.
In the Tennis World Tour 2, the noticeably improved gameplay makes playing matches fun, but it's not really motivating in the long run. Nevertheless, we regularly return to the court for a few matches as the graphics are quite enjoyable.
Timing Is Crucial
Compared to the predecessor, this time position to the ball, timing and direction of our stroke are decisive, so the games feel noticeably more realistic. However, we shouldn't expect too much variance, because most of the matches in Tennis World Tour 2 are played in the same way. Unfortunately, the title does not succeed in highlighting the strengths and weaknesses of the 38 professionals (including Roger Federer and the current world number one Ashleigh Barty). The pros feel largely the same on the course.
What we are missing most of all are special movements such as pike jumps or lunges to be able to successfully return a distant ball. After only a few games we can't get rid of the feeling that we have already seen absolutely everything a sport's game has to offer.
But that doesn't change the fact that Tennis World Tour 2 is really fun. Especially the combination of timing and the skill cards is great. We are allowed to store a maximum of five cards in one deck in order to receive short-term bonuses during matches. These range from increased precision, to more bounce, to restoring our stamina. A fun arcade touch in an otherwise realistic game feeling.
Nice Technique and Places
There is nothing to complain about from a technical point of view. Okay, the soundtrack of Tennis World Tour 2 is neat and tidy, without adding any significant accents. But the graphics are really impressive and flicker over the TV at a great frame rate.
The detailed models of the licensed professionals are also convincing, but they shine a little too much and therefore look like plastic figures. What a pity! Our own players cannot quite keep up with the details and in comparison, they fall off visually. However, we particularly like the varied courts, which are not only visually chic but also have a direct impact on the gameplay of Tennis World Tour 2.
On a clay court, the felt ball doesn't bounce as far, on grass, the ball becomes more unpredictable. But climate and time of day also have a direct effect on the game. Logically, the stamina of the players decreases more quickly in hot weather.
However, we can't talk about the online multiplayer, in which four players could theoretically participate and even create their own leagues. Unfortunately, no games could be found during our test time. We will deliver the verdict of the online mode at a later date.
Conclusion on Tennis World Tour 2
Fans of the sport had to wait a long time for a successful new video game, Tennis World Tour 2 finally skillfully reproduces the sport. Even if without quite reaching the quality of the big names like Top Spin or Virtua Tennis. Instead, the title simply lacks variance, variety and long-term motivation.
Nine years after the legendary Top Spin 4, the developers have succeeded in eliminating the biggest points of criticism of the first title. Finally, we can play doubles, even the automated strokes are a thing of the past. With the timing display and necessary precision, Tennis World Tour 2 provides additional realism, while the skill cards enable exciting tactics.
If you're ever in the mood for a game of tennis, Tennis World Tour 2 will serve you well - but with a weeping eye, we still look back at the two top dogs of the genre, whose quality remains unattainable.