In honor of this weekend’s French Open finals (vamos Rafa!), I thought I’d post mini-reviews of three of the PC Engine’s four tennis games.
1. Pro Tennis World Court (Namco, 1988)–One of the earliest PC Engine releases, if I’m not mistaken, Pro Tennis World Court deserves a few minutes of your time simply because it was the first (and last?) tennis game to include an RPG mode.
2. Final Match Tennis (Human, 1991)–Pro Tennis World Court may be unique, but in truth it isn’t a very good game. Final Match Tennis, on the other hand, is a *great* game. It’s as pick-up-and-play as you can get (each player has just two shots; typically a flat shot and a slice or a flat and a topspin shot) and it’s super fast–faster than any other tennis game I’ve played, in fact. Check it out if you like arcade-style sports games. (Oh, and if you’d rather control female tennis players, pick up a copy of 1992’s Human Sports Festival.)
3. Power Tennis (Hudson, 1993)–Well, this is a disappointment, isn’t it? Sure, it looks OK in screenshots, but in motion the game is a complete mess–with sloppy controls and (overly) challenging opponents. My suggestion: Take a pass on this sucker unless it’s absolutely free.
What’s the fourth PC Engine tennis game? Micro World’s Davis Cup Tennis. For some odd reason, I’ve never played it–or even contemplated playing it. The Brothers Duomazov‘s IvaNEC has me reconsidering that stance, though.