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Mario Tennis Aces Nintendo Switch Review

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Mario Tennis Aces Nintendo Switch Review - Reviewed by Kidzworld on Jun 19, 2018
( Rating: 4 Star Rating)

Mario Tennis Aces brings one of Nintendos favorite pastimes to the Switch. Check out Kidzworlds review of the new game!

By: Max Cannon

Tennis isn't a new sport to the world's most memorable plumber, the original Mario Tennis debuted way back on the Nintendo 64, but the Switch's Mario Tennis Aces is the deepest and most fun entry yet, despite some small but noticeable hiccups. If you've been a fan of the series up till this point then you'll be happier than ever with the latest release in the franchise.

It's a shame that some of the characters from adventure mode aren't yet playable.It's a shame that some of the characters from adventure mode aren't yet playable.Courtesy of Nintendo

Serving Up The Story

The latest Mario Tennis boasts the most expansive story mode in the franchise's history that centers around a magical tennis racket. Mario, who is sadly the only playable character in the story, trots across different environments on a sizable island while testing his might with some tennis challenges. Some of these challenges are really clever and pit Mario against some visually interesting characters and bosses but sometimes these trials can just wind up frustrating more than anything. Things start out easy enough with some simple rallies, opportunities to try out your different swings, and a chance to master your trick shots but things quickly get harder with some battles that often swing out of challenging and straight into annoying. 

Some bosses from Super Mario Sunshine make a return in Aces.Some bosses from Super Mario Sunshine make a return in Aces.Courtesy of Nintendo

There are a handful of small issues that add up throughout Mario Tennis Aces' adventure mode like the lack of a "Retry" button in the pause menu. Each battle has a ticking clock running down in the corner but when you realize that you don't have enough time to complete the challenge you can either waste your time and fail the challenge or select "Quit," get bumped out to the map and speak to the challenge-giver twice, it just feels like a lot of busy work. The 5 or 6 hours to finish up the adventure mode are mostly a lengthy tutorial to familiarize players with the surprisingly deep gameplay, and in that regard, it's a success.

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Hitting the Court

What really makes Aces such a blast is how good the actual moment-to-moment gameplay is. You'll make use of multiple different swings, trick shots, motion-aimed zone shots, and the unique feeling of each player. Charging up your shots will increase your character's energy meter which allows for some flashy slow-mo strikes which need some precise timing to block. Failure to perfectly block these shots will dwindle down your finite number of rackets which will give you a victory via KO rather than by points. The online isn't currently available but it's likely that players could overuse this mechanic to beat down their opponents, we'll see when the servers go live.

Zone Shots make for some of the strongest moves in your toolset.Zone Shots make for some of the strongest moves in your toolset.Courtesy of Nintendo

The game's tournament mode isn't too tough regardless of which tier you play at, though in my experience, Star Cup is the only one to ever give me any sort of real push-back. The game also includes a Wii Sports-like Swing Mode but it currently only works with one controller at a time. A simple back and forth rally looks, sounds, and -- most importantly -- feels good to partake in. There's a wide-range of characters to choose from, so your favorite is probably there, and there are rumors that even more will be added in down the road, so while there's a good bit of content now, it seems like Nintendo could make some small tweaks and additions to really tighten up the game down the road.

Trick Shots are mostly used as dodges in adventure mode rather than swings.Trick Shots are mostly used as dodges in adventure mode rather than swings.Courtesy of Nintendo
 

Final Thoughts

The Adventure mode has moments of fun and clever design but often sits in the realm of "decent." However, the core gameplay of actually playing Tennis is probably the best we've ever had in the series, it's just a shame that the single player doesn't give enough moments to really enjoy how good playing the game actually feels. Let's just hope that the online delivers what we're looking for but there's no way to know yet as the online wasn't available during the review process.

Pros

  • Visuals
  • Fun and Deep Gameplay

Cons

  • Small Frustrations
  • Light Content in Adventure Mode

Mario Tennis Aces Game Rating:4

Mario Tennis Aces Box ArtMario Tennis Aces Box ArtCourtesy of Nintendo
 

Available now for Nintendo Switch

Have Your Say!

Are you a fan of Mario's sporting spin-offs? Will you be picking up Mario Tennis Aces? Share your thoughts below!